The ABC of Why You Should Visit Bulgaria

visit bulgaria

Dive into the magic of a far far land, a place full of mystery and wonders.. Alright, alright, just kidding.. (or maybe not?). Let’s get back to reality.

How many of you have ever thought about visiting Bulgaria? How many actually know where it is located on the map? Probably just a few. What if I told you that after reading this article you will not only be a pro on all things Bulgaria, but you are also going to want to book your ticket ASAP.

So shall we begin..

Let me introduce you to the ABC of why this small Eastern European country should be your next holiday destination (a.k.a. the 26+ reasons why you should Bulgaria right now).

[A]: One of Bulgaria’s most attractive features for tourists is how affordable it is. As of 2007, Bulgaria ranked first as the cheapest country in the EU according to Eurostat’s price level statistics. The comparisons were made between all 28 EU countries on a variety of consumer needs, such as housing, transportation, food and services. And if a good deal isn’t enough to make you add Bulgaria to your bucket list, keep on reading.

[B]: The beautiful beaches on the Bulgarian Black Sea coast have turned into a magnet for people from all around the globe in the past years. Sunny Beach, one of the country’s most popular beach resorts on the Black Sea, has been named the cheapest beach getaway in Europe for the fourth time in four years by the Post Office. Pack your bags and enjoy your summer days off in one of the many beautiful coastal towns. Recommendations coming up.

[C]: Another top destination in Bulgaria is definitely the capital. If I had to give my honest opinion, this is not the prettiest city in the country, but you definitely shouldn’t miss out on it. I mean, it’s the capital for a reason. Read about my top recommendations on what to see in Sofia right here. The city is full of history, beautiful monuments and interesting places to explore, and it combines the modern spirit of a European capital with a pinch (very big one) of old communist vibes.

[D]: If you’re a true travel lover, you must have come across a photo of this place at some point. Welcome to the setting for the Hollywood blockbuster “The Expendables 2”! The Devetashka cave is a natural phenomenon, located in the northern part of Bulgaria, close to the city of Lovech. Its size and beauty are impressive, to say the least. The entrance fee is only 3 BGN (less than 2 euros). Secret tip: If you happen to go there, don’t forget to go see the Kroshuna waterfalls nearby. They’re gorgeous!

[E]: Even though Bulgaria has been becoming a more and more popular destination, it is still a place that can be defined as off the beaten track. Consider it your escape from the tourist crowds and all those mainstream cities that everyone wants to go to. Be cooler than that!

[F]: One of the things foreigners fall in love with about Bulgaria is the FOOD. Welcome to the land of shopska salad, banitsa (the most traditional breakfast) , kyufte (Bulgarian meatballs), moussaka (a heavenly potato-and-minced-meat dish), lyutenitsa and so on. No matter whether you’re vegan, vegetarian or a meat eater – there is something traditional for everyone to try, and you’re going to love it.

[G]: Let’s face it, Bulgaria’s scenery is downright gorgeous. High mountains, crystal blue lakes, mighty rivers and a beautiful sea coast – all of this within the borders of this small country. It’s something you need to go see at least once in your lifetime.

[H]: The Balkan region is home to a specific type of folklore dance, which has different variations in every country on the peninsula. The Bulgarians are remarkably proud of their horo – it is being dance on pretty much every occasion, but often also without such. No New Year’s Eve or wedding is complete without it.

[I]: Without a doubt, Bulgarians are quite an interesting bunch. So many traditions and beliefs that no one else understands, reverse nods and what not. (Remember: a ‘no’ there might mean ‘yes’) Besides, which other country has a tradition of pouring water on the doorsteps and walking over it for good luck for the first day of school!?

[J]: Not sure if this is a thing in other countries, but July Morning is an important day in Bulgaria. In the days before the 1st July, people from across the country would travel to the Black Sea coast to welcome the first sun rays of this exact month. The tradition includes gathering in the evening around fires, playing music and waiting for the sunrise.

[K]: All my Slavs out there know what kompot is. This is a sweet homemade juice, that contains the fruits it is made of. It is usually made in summer and put into jars, so it can be enjoyed all winter long. A great way to have strawberries, raspberries and peaches even when they are not in season.

[L]: The locals are some of the friendliest people you could ever come across. Especially if you go to a small town, you will most probably get invited into someone’s home and you will be offered some food and drinks. They don’t do it out of politeness or because they want something from you. They are just incredibly hospitable.

[M]: If you visit Bulgaria around in March you’re going to come across something you’ve probably never seen before. All markets and shops are selling armbands, pins and everything possible in white and red colours around this time of the year. This is one of the many traditions Bulgarians have and they just love it. Every year on the 1st March people exchange these so-called martenitsas with their friends and family as a sign of the arrival of spring. They are also believed to bring one health and prosperity during the new year. You can only take them off when you see a stork or a blooming tree, and you need to put them on a blooming tree as well. This is why by the end of March/ beginning of April most blooming trees in Bulgaria are covered in white-and-red armbands. It’s quite cool.

[N]: Let’s talk about the seaside and Nesebar – a gorgeous little seaside town. It is often referred to as ‘the pearl of the Black Sea” and since 1983 it’s included in the list UNESCO World Heritage Sites. This comes as no surprise since the city carries a long and rich history, starting from as early as the era of the Thracians. The largest and most famous Bulgarian resort – Sunny Beach, is located immediately to the north of Nesebar. I know everyone has heard of and wants to go to Sunny Beach, but if you want to get a real feeling of Bulgaria, my recommendation would be to go to Nesebar instead.

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Read also: 25 Gorgeous Places to visit in Bulgaria (apart from Sofia)

[O]: If you’ve ever had an argument with a Bulgarian, you’d know how overly-temperamental they are. I mean, this is a common feature amongst people living in the southern parts of Europe. The further south you go – the ‘worse’ it gets. Their temperament can be compared to the one of Italians, Spanish or Greek people. Arguments can get pretty heated, things will get loud, and the truth (and sometimes overreactions) won’t be spared. But this isn’t always a bad feature. Their attitude can definitely shake things up and make life more interesting.


[P]: Plovdiv – the second biggest city in the country – is considered one of the most beautiful ones as well. Its spectacular Old Town is a UNESCO World Heritage. The Roman theatre of Plovdiv is one of the world’s best preserved ancient Roman theatres, which is currently still being used to host concerts and other events.

[Q]: Especially abroad, Bulgarians are very picky when it comes to their fruit and vegetables, because they know what quality tastes like. Try a ‘Bulgarian pink tomato’ (no, it’s not really pink in colour, it’s just the name of the sort) and you will know what I am talking about. You’ve most probably never tasted such richness and deliciousness in your life.

[R]: There are two major things that must be mentioned here. The first one being the traditional Bulgarian alcoholic drink rakia. Every person has at least one relative who brews their own home made rakia, and this thing is strooong.

The other thing is the Seven Rila Lakes. This is a group of lakes, situated in the Rila mountains between 2,100 and 2,500 metres above sea level. The hike to the highest lake takes a few hours, but the view from there is so worth it.

[S]: One of my favourite resorts on the Black Sea Coast is Sozopol. Its Old Town has preserved the spirit and atmosphere of ancient Bulgaria and it’s going to make you forget we’re living in the 21st century.

[T]: Talking about traditions, Bulgaria is full of interesting ones that have been preserved throughout the history of the country. From dancing barefoot on fire, having an ‘egg fight’ on Easter, putting a coin in a homemade bread on Christmas Eve, to ‘beating’ your parents and grandparents with a wooden stick so that they give you money on the 1. January.. *finally breathes out*. Yeah, I know, quite unusual.. and the list doesn’t even stop here.

[U]: Bulgaria still hasn’t turned into a strongly industrialised country and big part of its countryside and pristine nature has remained untouched. This factor definitely contributes to its vast beauty and picturesque sights that are to be seen all across the country.

[V]: – The old capital – Veliko Tarnovo – is one of the prettiest cities in Bulgaria. The houses, stacked on top of each other, situated on the steep hills of the town, make the place look quite different from the other cities in the country. A must-see when in Veliko Tarnovo is a medieval fortress called Tsarevets, which has remained from the time of the Second Bulgarian Empire (1185 – 1393) and offers its visitors some interesting ruins and a great view of the whole city.

[W]: Women. Wine. Fast Wi-Fi. Seriously though, ask pretty much any guy that has been to Bulgaria what he thinks about the women there.

For the wine part, Bulgaria is one of the biggest exporting countries in the world. The wine production in Bulgaria has a long history dating back to Thracian times.

The country also has one of the fastest internet connections across the globe.

[X]: – It’s a common fact Bulgaria uses the Cyrillic alphabet. But things can get really amusing when you try to translate them from one language to the other. This X-Men poster is a good example of that, or it might just be Bulgarians’ overall opinion about the movie *mehh*:

[Y]: One of the things Bulgarians are really proud of is their yogurt – one of the most traditional Bulgarian foods you can try here. Everybody knows about Greek yogurt – but how many of you have heard of Bulgarian yogurt? It’s kind of similar, but better. 😉 It is made out of the bacteria Lactobacillus bulgaricus, which can only be found in Bulgarian air. Incredibly rich in probiotics and low in carbs, it is considered one of the healthiest dairy products worldwide. But be warned – it tastes a bit different from the yogurt other countries have to offer. Bulgarians also like to mix it with water and drink it while eating banitsa – best combo ever, amirite?

[Z]:The Zheravna folk festival is something you wouldn’t experience anywhere else. Anyone who wants to attend the festival must be dressed in traditional Bulgarian folk-costumes, otherwise you won’t be allowed in. It is also prohibited to bring in modern-life objects. The purpose of all this is that all participants have the opportunity to take a leap back in time and get a feeling of how Bulgarians used to live hundreds of years ago. It is definitely an experience to remember.

It’s time to wrap up this long post about all these reasons why Bulgaria should be put on your Bucket List. If you learned something new from it, or found out something that intrigued you, share it with me in the comments below. See ya soon!



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You may also enjoy:

25 Gorgeous Places to visit in Bulgaria (apart from Sofia)

The 13 Best Beach Resorts and Towns in Bulgaria (and which to avoid)

7 Top Things to do in Sofia, Bulgaria

Hand-picked city guide: 27 Awesome Things to do in Plovdiv

18 Traditional Bulgarian Foods and Drinks to try on your trip

22 Unmissable Things to do in Tryavna, Bulgaria

How weird are Bulgarians? – 21 Unusual Things Bulgarians Do

12 Things to do in Borovets for non-skiers

28 Delightful Things to do in Bansko for all seasons

Things to do in Pomorie – Bulgaria’s Spa and Wellness Resort

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1 Comment

  1. Kristine
    February 16, 2019 / 2:25 pm

    A very interesting post, will save this for later! 🙂 I love Balkan countries 🙂

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