Bulgaria Travel Guide

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Bulgaria Information

Population: 7.35 million

Time Zone: GMT/UTC +2

Driving side: Drivers drive on the right hand side of the road.

Languages: Bulgarian, Turkish, Romany

Religion: Bulgarian Orthodox 85%
(Muslim 13%

Emergency #: Police: 166
Fire: 160
Ambulance: 150

Bulgaria Culture

Bulgaria has a dark and oppressive past and its transition to democracy has been troubled. Although in the throes of social and economic chaos, the people are hospitable and friendly.

Still strongly bonded to Russia, with Russian being the second language most spoken, the Bulgarian people cling to their legends and fables of times gone by and it is only the younger people who are most likely to be able to speak a strange form of English.

Meat, potatoes, beans, salads and cheese are the favoured food of the people and everything is washed down with alcohol.

Bulgarians waggle their heads from left to right to mean yes and nod to mean no. Try to remember this as things can get very confusing when trying to explain yourself.

Bulgaria Popular Destinations

Sofia The capital of Bulgaria, this compact city with its mix of architectural styles was largely rebuilt after WWII. Fortunately not all the beautiful old buildings were destroyed and today all who care to visit can appreciate them.The city's largest cathedral, Sveta Nedelya, was restored after a 1924 bomb attempt killed most of the cabinet. The 14th century church of St Petka Samardjiiska with its lovely frescoes in the nave is a 'must see', so too is the National Museum of History. From churches and mausoleums to fashionable avenues and parks this lovely city has something for everyone.

Nesebar - Once an active trading post, today this little town survives on fishing and tourism. Located on a rocky peninsula connected to the mainland, the cobbled streets are lined with stone and timber houses. Due to its quaintness and relaxed atmosphere, the town is filled with tourists during summer.

Rila Mountains Having the highest mountain in the Balkan Peninsula, Musala Peak, these mountains are a hiker's dream. Rila Monastery nestled in a narrow valley 74 miles from Sofia, helped to keep Bulgarian culture alive during the Turkish rule of the area from the 15th to the 19th centuries. The magnificent Church attached to the monastery has three great domes, 1200 frescoes depicting biblical figures and gilded iconostasis depicting biblical scenes.

Veliko Tarnovo Picturesque houses cling to the cliffs of this university city as the Yantra River winds through a gorge in the city centre. Seeped in history and tradition with its churches, museums and cobble streets, it is also a buzzing and exciting town with its huge student population.

Bulgaria Beaches

Varvara - Every summer the beach in this tiny fishing community is transformed when artists and alternative lifestylers move onto the fields above to spend their holidays in stick and leaf shelters. Buying their supplies of fish and vegetables from the locals, the beach is turned into a 'hippie' party all summer long.

Moving Around Bulgaria

The bus and train networks are cheap and extensive but totally illogical. Timetables often do not correspond with arrivals and departures, there are mysterious cancellations and the office staff can be rude and unhelpful. In spite of this, as long as you're not holidaying to deadlines these modes of transport are the best way to get around. Look past the filthy seats, the soft-porn wallpaper and the pop music from yesteryear. You will arrive at your destination, eventually.

National festival and holidays

Christmas 25th and 26th December - Religious Bulgarians were forbidden to practise during Communist rule, so they invented a secular celebration on the following day. Since the collapse of Communism the original Christmas Day is now celebrated along with the invented one and nobody seems to be complaining.

Trifon Zarezan 14th February Ancient festival of winegrowers. Vines are pruned and sprinkled with wine to ensure a bountiful harvest.

Kukeri A spring festival celebrated in the Rodopi Mountains, participants wear traditional clothes and masks and perform ancient dances to drive away evil spirits and ask the good spirits for a plentiful harvest.

The Festival of Roses Celebrated at Kazanlak Karlovo with folk songs and dances on the first Sunday in June, is another festival seeped in ancient history.

Useful Bulgaria Links

Your Holiday Planner in Bulgaria!
Get some useful information if you decide to visit Bulgaria.

Bulgaria Coast Info
Bulgariacoast.info is a very useful guide for the budget conscious traveller who wants to discover something of the magic of the 'real' bulgaria.

Bulgaria Travel Guide
Explore the most beautiful tourist locations in Bulgaria: world heritage sites, national parks, seaside resorts, monasteries, castles etc.

Traveling Guide and Tips in Bulgaria
get tips for your traveling and visit in bulgaria,just for your happy travel

Bulgaria Tours

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