Balkans Cat Ski Tour
8 Nights I Includes 2 Days Catskiing
February 15, 2020 to February 23, 2020
$3200 Per Person
Join us in Europe this winter for our Balkans Cat Ski Tour, where we visit Bosnia & Herzegovina, Serbia and Macedonia. Throughout the tour you’ll be led by our local guide and hosted by the team at Mint Tours.
The trip will commence in Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia & Herzegovina, from here we’ll visit the mountains of Jahorina and Bjelasnica, which were locations for skiing events in the 1984 Winter Olympics. From here, make our way to Serbia, where we’ll ride the resort of Kopaonik, one of the largest and most modern resorts in the country. We’ll spend our last 3 days of the tour in Macedonia, experiencing a state-of-the-art Cat-Ski operation run out of Popova Shapka, which is sure to be a highlight of the trip. Not only will you get to spend many days on-snow, you’ll also get to experience the best culinary and cultural experiences the Balkans has to offer.
2 Days Cat Skiing in Macedonia
Included in the tour is 2 full days catskiing at Popova Shapka, located on Shar Mountain. The natural shape of the mountain allows easy access for the snowcat to reach the peaks and ridges from were long faces are waiting for the ultimate powder freeride experience.
Cat Ski Terrain
The backcountry terrain we ride is separated into 2 zones – the higher zones are from 2100m to 2600m and the lower zones sit below 2100m but not lower than 1700m. Most of the time you will be riding the north face of the mountain where huge quantities of powder can be found. From wide open faces to narrow couloirs and natural pipes, the nature of the terrain gives maximum pleasure to all levels of riders. On a day with good visibility, there are no restrictions. Basically, you can ride everywhere where the ski guides will find good snow. You can do long lines from top to bottom ranging from 500 to 850 vertical meters per line. If the visibility isn’t ideal, we will ride the lower elevations in the trees. Here you will find deep snow, and widely spaced trees and the powder stays protected from the wind.
Local Guides & Local Experiences
For a genuine experience, our local guide shows us the best of the local culture and provides insights into the places we visit. You’ll get an authentic experience with visits to local towns, restaurants, and après-ski.
This is a small group tour with a maximum of 6 people. When we are on mountain our guest to guide ratio is 1 : 3. This allows a more personal experience between our guests and guides. This ensures you get the most out of your time with us, and keeping the groups small means less time waiting and more time riding powder!
Snow & Conditions
Our tour is scheduled to run during peak snow season in the Balkans. The resorts are quiet and in great condition, with all pistes open and top to bottom riding. You can expect anything from perfect bluebird days through to riding powder. Even if we don’t get fresh snow overnight, the altitude and our local knowledge will ensure you’ll be able to ride light dry snow days after a storm.
8 nights 4-Star Accommodation
We make sure all our guests stay in quality accommodation that’s in the best location. Throughout the tour you’ll stay in 4 star hotels which have great facilities lncluding thermal spas. Our comfortable twin share rooms are equipped with 2 single beds and each room has a great heating, private ensuite bathroom, TV, and free WiFi. Breakfasts and dinners are included throughout the tour.
This is an 9 day tour where we visit Bosnia & Herzegovina, Serbia and Macedonia.
Arrival day is 15 February, 2020
Departure day is 23 February, 2020
15 February, 2020 – Arrive
We’ll meet you at Sarajevo Airport, and transfer you to our hotel. In the afternoon, we’ll regroup and go on a guided tour of Sarajevo Town, visiting some of the most famous places and monuments of this historic city, including the Turkish district of Bascarsija with traditional houses & shops. We’ll head back to the hotel for a group dinner where you can get to know your hosts and fellow guests, then you can either head out in town, or get a good night of rest before the first day on snow
16 February, 2020 – Ride at Bjelasnica Resort
We’ll meet at the hotel restaurant for breakfast, where you can fill up on a range of foods before we get in our private van and transfer up to the resort of Jahorina. With 11 lifts and 25km of slopes, there’s plenty of terrain to explore. We’ll spend the morning getting to know the resort and warming up the legs before stopping for lunch on the mountain. After lunch we’ll head out for some more riding, before transferring back to the hotel. You’ll have some downtime before dinner where you can unwind at the hotel’s spa facility, walk around the neighbourhood or simply relax in your room. We’ll regroup for dinner at the hotel, then you have the option to join us on a night out in the old town, exploring some of the bars in the lively town of Sarajevo.
17 February, 2020
After breakfast at the hotel we’ll head up to the resort of Bjelasnica. We’ll get to know the mountain in the morning, stop for a quick lunch, then in the afternoon we have the option of exploring some of the off-piste terrain if you’re feeling adventurous, or just stick to the resort, there are options for everyone! Once we’re done riding for the day, we’ll transfer back to the hotel for dinner, then have the option to head out again for our last night in Bosnia & Herzegovina.
18 February, 2020 – Transfer & tour of local village
We’ll meet in the morning for breakfast, before departing Sarajevo and head towards Serbia. We’ll make a short stop over the border and visit a village for a scenic visit and some lunch, before continuing our journey over the Zlatibor National Park, and arriving at the biggest ski resort in the area – Mt Kopaonik. We’ll have free time in the evening before meeting for dinner, then in the evening we can head to one of the many bars or have a quiet drink at one of the cosy mountain huts.
19 February, 2020 – Ride at Mt Kopaonik
We’ll have breakfast at the hotel, before hitting the slopes of Kopaonik. This modern resort is famous for its great snow conditions and is part of the biggest mountain range in Serbia. With 24 lifts, and 62km of terrain to explore it’s sure to keep us busy all day. We’ll have a brief stop for lunch, before heading back out for the afternoon. You’ll get some downtime before dinner, where you can relax in the hotels spa centre, before regrouping for dinner with the group.
20 February, 2020 – Transfer & tour of Leskovak
After breakfast at the hotel, we’ll head south towards Popova Shapka in Macedonia. Our lunch stop will be in the must visit town of Leskovak, which is the Balkans capital of barbeque, we’ll have a group lunch at one of the restaurants, before continuing over the Macedonian border. Explore the hotel, or the local area before we regroup for dinner and a drink in the hotel bar.
21 February, 2020 – Cat Ski
We’ll have breakfast at the hotel, and then head to the meeting point for our snow-cat tour. We’ll load up the cat with our gear and head up to the Shar Plania freeride areas. We’ll spend the day using the snow cat to access some of the best terrain in the area, stopping briefly for lunch but making the most of the terrain and conditions. In the late afternoon we’ll head back to the hotel, and have some free time to relax – rest in your room, grab a drink, or relax in the indoor pool. Join us for a group dinner and we’ll debrief on the days adventures, and the best bit is doing it all again the next day.
22 February, 2020 – Cat Ski
After breakfast, we’ll head out on the snow cat again, spending the morning accessing some more great freeriding terrain, before grabbing some lunch. In the afternoon we have a transfer to Skopje, the capital of Macedonia. We’ll have a group dinner before heading out to explore the city centre.
23 February, 2020 – Depart
It’s our last day in the Balkans! Grab breakfast with the group, swap photos and stories and start planning the next adventure, before we transfer back to Skopje International Airport.
- 2 days cat skiing at Popova Shakpa with local guides
- Avalanche safety equipment for cat ski days (ABS backpack, beacon, shovel & probe)
- 1 guided day at Bjelasnica Resort
- 1 guided day at Mt Kopaonik
- Private transportation throughout the tour
- Walking tour with local guide in Sarajevo
- 3 nights twin share accommodation in Sarajevo
- 2 nights twin share accommodation in Kopaonik
- 2 nights twin share accommodation in Popova Shapka
- 1 night twin share accommodation in Skopje
- Breakfast & dinner every day of the tour
- Hosting & guiding by Mint Tours