Places to Visit in Bulgaria

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Bulgariainfo-icon is an Eastern Europeinfo-icon country situated in the Balkans. The relief of Bulgaria is various and you can enjoy both a seaside experience and a trip to the mountains. There are plenty beautiful places to visit in Bulgariainfo-icon.

The Black Seainfo-icon with golden beaches, ancient history, and popular modern resorts, the Danube River at its most imposing part, the Balkan mountains with a lot of adventure opportunities are only some of the Bulgarian touristic offers.

Besides natural landmarks, you should get to know local food, traditional costumes, music, and dances, and explore a crafts fair. Bulgaria has a lot of stories to tell.

Sofiainfo-icon

The capital city of Sofia

Sofia has very old roots, it is mentioned in history before the Romans invasion. The homeland of the Getae, part of the Roman Empire, and attractive for Slavs and migratory Bulgarians, the territory of Sofia, once known as Serdica, keeps alive the legacy of those times. Archaeological sites from nearly 2,000 years ago and well-organized museums will show you the rich history of this country.

But Sofia is more than just a place of history and museums. It is a green city, due to its many parks, a modern city in full development, an exponent of the Soviet architecture, and an Orthodox life keeper.

While in Sofia, you could not miss the Orthodox Churches with round colorful domes. St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral is situated right in the center of the city and it is one of the largest churches in the world. Try to find Boyana Church as well. This is a very little XIVth century church, but it is a UNESCO World Heritage site for its very well preserved murals.

But not only Orthodox Churches are well represented here. Mosques and Catholic cathedrals have their places. Actually, the name of the city comes from a VIth century mosque, Hagia Sophia Church.

If you want more than a city break, Sofia has a solution: Vitosha mountain. Only 20 minutes away from the city center there is a mountain with ski resorts, hotels, and everything you need for an escape from the city. You can get there by bus.

Enjoy hiking, alpinism, skiing, a natural park, mineral springs, Bulgaria's longest cave, and breathtaking views.

Nesebarinfo-icon

Nesebar beach by night

When you say Bulgaria you say “Let's go to the beach!” This is the touristic image of the country. But what would you say if on the list of places to visit in Bulgaria would be a city-museum called “The pearl of the Black Sea”? This city is Nesebar, situated in the Burgas Province.

Nesebar roots are older than 3,000 years. It is an ancient city, almost entirely composed of historical buildings. Nesebar is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The city is split in two by an isthmus made by people. The old part of the city is on a peninsula, while the new modern town is on the mainland part. Nesebar is a mix of large modern resorts and archaeological sites.

It would be hard to decide what to do: go to the beach or visit a museum. Some say that Nesebar has more churches per citizen than any other city in the world.

Varnainfo-icon

Places to visit in Bulgaria

Varna is also a mix that will not disappoint you. The third largest city in Bulgaria, Varna is an important port and commercial hub, but also a highly appreciated seaside resort and a historical city.

The oldest artifacts found here were dated in 4,200 – 4,600 BC. Greeks were no strangers to this place. The culture of Varna started with the Thracians and continued with Greeks, Celts, Romans, Slavs, and so on. The glory of Varna never faded out. The strategic position has provided an important place throughout history.

Today, you can do so much in Varna that it for sure deserves a place among the best places to visit in Bulgaria. Museums full of history and art, stunning parks and a botanical garden, incredible architecture, both old and new, cathedrals and churches, and a huge beautiful beach. For a small return in time, visit Varna's Roman Baths, some of the largest therme that survived the times.

The rocky landscape of this area gave us to beautiful places, perfect for a photo session: The stone forest (the only desert in Bulgaria covered in stone columns as a result of some strange natural phenomenon) and The Wonderful Rocks (ten stone needles, about 50 meters high, standing proudly as some castle's towers on the river).

Plovdiv

Plovdiv old town

The oldest continuously-inhabited city in Europeinfo-icon and the 20th on the list of the oldest cities in the world is Plovdiv. A large city today, a famous city in Thracians and Romans times, Plovdiv has a lot to offer. For example, you could attend a concert in the Roman-era Ancient Theater of Philippopolis. Or you could walk the seven hills, admiring old buildings, visiting museums, and enjoying a romantic atmosphere into Tsar Simeon Garden.

The garden was designed by the Swiss landscape architect Lucien Chevales in 1892. Its landmarks are the Lake with the Singing Fountains, the fountain on Goddess Demeter, and a Viennese pavilion with metal artwork.

On the list of places to visit in Bulgaria, there is something for everyone. If you want relaxation and a typical summer holiday, choose a seaside resort. If you want a city break full of stories and experiences, choose one of the great Bulgarian cities. If you want both of them, Bulgaria has the place for you. Explore, learn, and be curious.

Don't forget to check out the postcards from my journey through Bulgaria!

Monica Radulescu a freelance writer for aSabbatical.com
Travelling is a joy. It's a way to become a better and wiser person. Mountain paths and road trips are my favourites.

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