The Balkan mountain range is a mountain range in the eastern part of the Balkan Peninsula. The range runs 557 km from Vrashka Chuka Peak on the Bulgarian-Serbian border eastward through central Bulgaria to foothills reaching Cape Emine on the Black Sea. The highest peaks of the Balkan Mountains are in central Bulgaria. The highest peak is Botev at 2,376 m, which makes the mountain range the third highest in the country, after Rila and Pirin. The mountains are the source of the name of the Balkan Peninsula.
All, but its eastern foothills and a western gap, is the watershed between the Black Sea and Aegean Sea drainage basins. The western gap is, spectacularly narrow, Iskar Gorge, a few miles north of the Bulgarian capital, Sofia. The karst relief determines the large number of caves, including Magura, featuring the most important and extended European post-Palaeolithic cave painting, Ledenika, Saeva dupka, Bacho Kiro, etc. The most notable rock formation are the Belogradchik Rocks in the west.