Septemvri-Dobrinishte narrow gauge line Panorama, Bulgaria

The Septemvri–Dobrinishte narrow-gauge line (Bulgarian: теснолинейка Септември – Добринище, tesnolineyka Septemvri–Dobrinishte) is the only operating 760 mm (2 ft 5 1516 in) narrow-gauge line in Bulgaria. It is operated by Bulgarian State Railways (BDŽ). The line is actively used with four passenger trains running the length of the line in each direction per day. The journey takes five hours through the valleys and gorges between Rila and Rhodopes.

The route leads from Septemvri on the mainline Sofia–Plovdiv to Dobrinishte, passing Velingrad, Yakoruda, Razlog and Bansko, linking the western part of the Upper Thracian Plain with the Western Rhodopes, Rila and Pirin mountains. Due to the characteristics of the route through the mountains, the narrow-gauge line Septemvri–Dobrinishte is also known as the Alpine railway in the Balkans. Avramovo station, situated at 1267 meters above the sea, is the highest station in the Balkans.

The railway was built in several stages between 1921 and 1945 with total length of 125 km (78 miles). The Varvara–Pazardzhik branch line, which was closed in 2002, was 16.6 km (10.3 miles) long.


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