What to expect when you travel to Bulgaria for the first time

travel to Bulgaria

Bulgaria is an underrated travel destination. The southeastern Europe is a land that is just now being explored by the vast majority of travellers. And for a good reason.

Bulgaria is an affordable country in Europe and has pretty much everything Earth has to offer to its inhabitants: mountains, seaside, rivers, high and plain lands. Although the country itself it’s not very big, the change of scenery after just a few hours of driving is amazing.

I was in Bulgaria years ago, twice to the seaside and once passing by on my way to Greece. Most Romanians travelled to Bulgaria for the same reasons. But that is not how a traveller gets to know Bulgaria.

travel to Bulgaria

Why is Bulgaria underrated?

As a Romanian, travelling to Bulgaria was always on the list of travel destinations. Bulgaria is most known for its all-inclusive seaside resorts, but there’s more than cheap food people need to know about.

Past the recent years, many winter lovers started to spend their holidays there as well, because of the very developed high quality and affordable ski resorts.

And even so, travelling to Bulgaria is still underrated, as many Bulgarian travellers have stated numerous times. Got me wondering: why is Bulgaria underrated?

I don’t have the entire answer to this, but I can share my experience of travelling to Bulgaria. The transport infrastructure is the one that first hits you. As poor, bad quality and hard to understand. The available information in English is available in limited amounts and the different alphabet is not making the communication any easier.

I believe communication is one simple step we all need to make to improve our relationships and to become better, save time and energy. Unfortunately, here’s where I cannot help the Bulgarian tourism. The language barrier is a huge one at this point. And it’s a pity because it’s easy to travel there, it’s close and all the shortcomings can be more easily overcome when there is a clear and concise communication.

There are efforts being put into this, bloggers and travel agencies have content written in English, but it would really help if there was an English version of the transport sites, that offer means to get there.

travel to Bulgaria

How to get to Bulgaria?

Take a plane to Sofia, train or bus. There is a good bus system, the main downside is that it is in Bulgarian. And most information desk personnel can not help you too much. That’s why travelling to Bulgaria was never on top of my list. I don’t want to bother too much. And because there is no info, I don’t even know what I should be struggling with.

I might sound like a complete ignorant traveller, but the thing is I will never look for information that I have no idea that exists. And I am so sorry now because after experiencing Bulgaria, it’s such a pity I had this perception.

travel to Bulgaria Bansko

Why travel to Bulgaria?

From the outside, Bulgaria feels cold and unfamiliar, because I have no idea what those people are saying, talking about, eating or thinking. Complete strangers to me. And they are so close, I can drive to a Bulgarian city.

From my short visit there, as a curious traveller, I realised I don’t know much about the Bulgarian culture. And I realize I still have more things to discover, but I can tell you this:

travel to bulgaria

Good food

I believe food is an important aspect of a culture, and Bulgaria is part of that rich Balkanian culture and yes, it involves a lot of tasty foods.

 

Amazing nature

Bulgaria has some amazing mountains. I bet you had no idea. Me neither. While I visited Bansko, I admired the best landscape from my hotel room and went on a short hike nearby. No words can describe that place.

 

Friendly people

I cannot complain in any way, I felt blessed, meeting the nicest people a traveller could. Sometimes you won’t be able to tell, since they cannot speak English, but they are so friendly, and young people have very good level of English. You will be just fine. Once you get there.

 

travel to Bulgaria

History treasure

Bulgaria has old roots, like all the European Populations and has many Russian and Turkish influences because of it. I would call it a land of history and culture, a gem to be discovered.

Travel to Bulgaria Sofia

 

The Takeaway?

Bulgaria needs to be discovered. Travel to Bulgaria to discover beautiful nature, fascinating history tales and great food. A link between the boring European civilisations and the gate to Orient.

3 Replies to “What to expect when you travel to Bulgaria for the first time”

  1. Wonderful post, Julia! Fantastic photography! For me, part of the appeal of places like Bulgaria is that they are still “off the beaten path” for most of your common tourist crowd. So, although the lack of tourism information in English, French, German, etc. makes it difficult to navigate, you have to admit, the fact that it keeps away the tourist crowds helps preserve some level of authenticity.

    1. Thank you! Yes, indeed the lack of public info will help preserve the untouched feeling that place has. I am always thinking about this, and it’s hard to decide if I would have it full of tourist or unexplored.

If you want to share your thoughts, it would mean the world to me!