Lifestyle & Inspiration

5 insider tips how to get to and spend great time in Sofia, Bulgaria

If you find yourself answering “yes” to these questions, as I do, keep reading this short post and let me convince you to put Bulgaria’s capital – Sofia on your bucket list.

Find your low-cost flight from 12€ and hostels from 9€ 

Yes, yes, it’s true – to fly to Sofia is cheaper than take a city train to the airport (at least in Munich). Use travel search engines likeSkyscanner and Google Flights or take a look at my favorite low-cost flight companies directly – Wizzair (33 flights to Sofia),Ryaniar (22 flights to Sofia), EasyJet (4 flights to Sofia).

Love meeting new people? Then hostels are the best choice for you. Check “Be my guest” Hostel right at the center of Sofia at Ivan Vazov street. You will have house keeper sleeping all night on the sofa at the reception and enjoying some spiritual drinks by the end of the working day. It’s Eastern Europe, babe!

Take a free city tour run by locals 

If you are short with time, it’s the thing you should really do is to take a Free Sofia Tour - a free of charge English language sightseeing walking tour, organized by young guides and volunteers. These guys not just take you to touristic places and have tons of knowledge on historical events, they share their personal stories and make you feel this city.

Make your own pub crawl

There is an organized pub crawl for tourists and I checked it out, of course. And I cannot say you should go for it. If there are too many people attending, you can’t get inside the best tiny bars, drinks propose with the ticket are not so great and you actually learn nothing about the place (it was promised as a cultural tour).

So here I made for you a list of really great authentic places where you will meet locals:

- Hambara – secret bar, so it’s not easy to find. Searching for it, you will first see green building and behind it a place with a wooden door and no name. If it’s locked, knock hard. Enter the paradise of candles – no electrical light creates unforgettable cozy feeling. In Western Europe this place would be just forbidden, don’t think it is at odds with safety instructions.
Adress: ul. "6-ti septemvri" 22

- SpeakEasy Bar – another secret bar in Sofia. No sighs, you should open the door leading to cellar and find another door! Find the key numbered with the day of your visit and come in.

They serve amazing cocktails (try belegzija, bold fashioned and clover club) made by professional bartenders. And as real bartenders they will become your friends for night or life.
Adress: ul. "Tsar Shishman" 15

- For lovers of alternative clubs:
Friday Bar (ПЕТЪК)
Adress: ul. "General Yosif V. Gourko" 21

- Terminal 1
Adress: ul. "Angel Kanchev" 1

- Beach bar – nothing to do with the beach, but definitely a great bar!
Adress: ul. "Ivan Vazov"

- Rakia Raketa Bar – this bar could be in NYC or Paris, my friend said, amazing design and delicious food.
Adress: bul. "Yanko Sakazov" 17

Visit 10+ churches 

Even during the guided tour, it was said that Bulgarians are not extremely religious. Still, they have a great heritage of churches.

The oldest building in Sofia - Sveti Georgi church, build in 4th century you will find going inside the arc of presidential building and is something you will not find in another country.

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral – symbol of Bulgaria, second biggest orthodox church on Balkans. Insider tip: walk down from the cathedral to green park area and visit small market, where you can buy handmade souvenirs, antiques and hand painted icons from 5€.

Try traditional food 

You haven’t been to Bulgaria if you haven’t tried banitsa (баница) – Bulgarian bakery traditionally served for breakfast (find on Shishman street) and Rose Lukum – traditional Bulgarian sweet with rose petals.

If at some moment you will not know where to go or what to do, ask a local! They are very nice and speak English pretty well!

About The Author

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Tetiana Kralko

Tetiana Kralko is a Ukrainian young professional living in Munich. Curious and outgoing, she has always been interested in exploring different cultures. She discovers new things though living in various countries, traveling and talking to people.