Europa dell'Est & Russia
Visit the world famous Boyana Church which can be reached by public bus, Sveta Petka Church which is surrounded by the Sheraton Hotel. So a half-day walk through
is enough to visit the most important sights -- if you want to do more, a full day is all right. Please note that you have to purchase and punch a second ticket for your backpack. I saw fellow travelers who got fined by paying 7 leva (a single ticket is 0,70 leva). This is still usual in some other eastern European countries, not only in Bulgaria. The "Inspectors" or "Kontrol" only speak Bulgarian and are mostly elder people. Be careful when you enter the street tram at Sofia railway station or some stops before it.
is the capital city of Bulgaria. Its traditions are based on the 800 year old war between Bulgarians and the Turks. Now the Bulgarians are busy reconstructing their country and to be a part of the European Union.
I went to
in the winter and it was pretty boring from a young person's perspective, as well as quite gloomy (and freezing). But there are a few sights, although they looked totally deserted. It was somewhat depressing.
Varna is about 6 hours away (by train - maximum 30 leva) from
. It has clean beaches and lots of character - lovely people and very cheap. Varna's night life is great, eating out is very cheap.
I'm a Bulgarian living abroad and every time I go to
I'm amazed by how fast the city changes in a positive way. Bulgaria's citizens still don't receive European salaries and local people can't still consume import products, even if there is a real hunger for that. Otherwise Varna is a very nice holiday place with nice beaches, very nice walking central area, and intense night life. Last but not least, the prices are still very low compared to countries from the region like Greece and for the same quality, if not better.
-- we stayed there while getting our house finished in Arbanassi. We love the place.
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