The Blessed Rock of Demir Baba

Demir Baba Teke
Demir Baba Teke | © Камен Ханджиев/WikiCommons
Maria Angelova

Bulgarians are mainly Orthodox Christians, with the second largest religion in the country being Islam. However in some particular religious sites, everyone is welcome regardless of their beliefs. Demir Baba Teke is one of these places, and has been considered holy for more than 3,000 years.

Loved by over 40s

Demir Baba Teke is a mausoleum, located at Razgrad Province in northeastern Bulgaria, dedicated to a 16-century Alevi saint called Demir Baba, whose body is believed to still lie in the tomb inside the main building. Demir Baba healed people and spread his wisdom while he was alive, while nowadays his relics are considered sacred and to work miracles. Alevism is a mystical branch of Islam, which doesn’t require it’s followers to visit a mosque or observe too many rituals, the focus being more on the inner belief and pilgrimage. It is known for being very tolerant of all other religions. The word ‘teke‘ stands for a sacred Alevi place with a mausoleum, which means the Demir Baba Teke is a place for people of all religions to worship and reflect.

Demir Baba Teke

Facts and mythology

Archaeological research has found that the Alevi teke was built on top of an earlier Thracian sanctuary. This is a fairly common practice all over Bulgaria – one religion’s place of worship pops up on top of the previous one. There is a small museum house where documents and information about Demir Baba and Alevism are exhibited but most people don’t come here for the history. The teke and the water spring inside its yard are rumored to have healing powers. As you wander around the buildings, you will see many pieces of clothing, socks, and handkerchiefs tied to tree branches. This is due to the local belief that if a sick person ties a piece of cloth at a sacred place, their sickness will remain with the cloth and they will leave healthy.

The mausoleum at Demir Baba Teke with the grave of Demir Baba himself

There are many rituals people perform when they visit Demir Baba Teke but two of the most important are drinking from the spring and walking with their eyes closed to a special place where their fingers should fit into two openings on the wall (this one is called “pricking out the eyes of the witch”).

Visiting Demir Baba Teke is free of charge and it doesn’t have specific opening hours – normally it will be open every day until sunset.

What else to see

The Thracian Tomb of Sveshtari is located just 1.5 miles (3 km) along the road from Demir Baba Teke. This UNESCO-protected site features impressive bas-relief female figures decorating the walls of what was designed to be the eternal home of the body of an ancient Thracian king.

Sveshtari Thracian Tomb, Bulgaria

Demir Baba Teke, Bulgaria

culture trip left arrow
 culture trip brand logo

Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip

meet our Local Insider


women sitting on iceberg


2 years.


It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.


I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!

culture trip logo letter c
group posing for picture on iceberg
group posing for picture on iceberg

Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.

map of volcanic iceland trip destination points
culture trip brand logo
culture trip right arrow
landscape with balloons floating in the air


Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world

Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.

Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.

Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.

Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.

We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.