The 13 Best Beach Resorts and Towns in Bulgaria (And One to Avoid)

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Are you looking for the best beach resorts in Bulgaria? Wow, thats actually spectacular! Im so happy youve decided to spend your holidays in Bulgaria rather than in Greece or Turkey - the neighbouring countries that usually overshadow our beautiful seaside.

I understand why these places draw so much attention, but Bulgaria has its charm as well - its still undiscovered, its relatively cheap (this might be debatable with the recent inflation) and it offers a wide variety of options - from old historic towns and family resorts, to campsites and beautiful rocky formations.

If youre still unsure which beach town or resort in Bulgaria is best for you, heres a list of my top 13 choices. Ive visited all beach towns in Bulgaria (though some of them only as a kid) and Ive definitely picked my favorites. So lets dive right in.

How to get to the seaside in Bulgaria

By car

By far the easiest and most convenient way to reach the Bulgarian seaside is by car. A car rental provider Ive personally used and can recommend is Top Rent a Car. Even the smallest vehicle is better than nothing, so be sure to check their prices and rent one if it fits your budget - it will save you a lot of hassle!

By bus

Getting to the seaside by bus is not impossible, but unless you have direct transport, it could be a waste of time.

Recently a friend of mine from the UK was visiting Bulgaria and really wanted to visit Sozopol - one of the prettiest beach towns here. She was in Bansko and she didnt have a car, so public transport it was. After some research we found out she had to travel around 16 hours (with 2 changes and a long transfer time), so it just didnt seem worth it.

However, this might not be the case with you, especially if your starting point is a larger city! For example, you can get from Sofia to Sozopol by bus (without any changes) in about 6 hours and by the time of writing this, it would cost you around 20 euros.

Union Ivkoni is one of the biggest bus companies in Bulgaria, so just check if it would be suitable for your route of choice. For this purpose you can also use Google Maps!

Hitchhiking

Hitchhiking is quite common in Bulgaria and drivers are more or less used to it. But always be on the lookout when doing it, especially if youre a solo female traveller. Not everyone might have your best interest in mind, and for these cases catching the bus would be the safer option.

Well, if hitchhiking is your thing, theres nothing better than travelling for free and hearing the stories of locals!

Beach resorts in Southern Bulgaria

1. Sozopol

I start this list with my personal favorite, and probably most peoples for that matter, beach resort in Bulgaria - Sozopol. With its cobbled streets and Revival architecture, this small town transports you back in the 19th century.

The old town of Sozopol was declared as an architectural and historical reserve in 1965 and to this day you can see the old, densely-built houses in the typical Revival style. This is also one of the Black Sea Coast towns in Bulgaria, dating back to 7,000 years ago.

There are several beaches in and around Sozopol, so its very convenient even if you dont have a car. Keep in mind that this is also one of the busiest seaside resorts in Bulgaria during the summer months, so be sure to book your stay well in advance.

 

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Beaches in and around Sozopol

  • Central Beach
  • Harmanite Beach
  • GoldFish Beach
  • Kavatsite
  • Smokinya Beach

2. Nessebar

Settled on a rocky peninsula on the Black Sea Coast, the more than 3,000-year-old town of Nessebar was originally inhabited by the Thracians. Later, in 6th century BC, Nessebar became a Greek colony, which explains the remains that originate mostly from the Hellenistic period, including the acropolis, a temple of Apollo, an agora and a wall from the Thracian fortifications.

In Nessebar you can also see traditional wooden houses built in the 19th century that are typical of the Black Sea architecture from this period. Be sure to visit some of Nessebars most important sights, such as the St. Sophia Basilica and the the resorts emblem - the wooden windmill beside the road to the old town.

Nessebar was included in the World Heritage List in 1983 thanks to its unique historic value. Nowadays, the Old Town attracts tourists with its romantic atmosphere, picturesque cobbled streets and interesting landmarks.

Beaches in and around Nessebar

  • South Beach
  • North Beach
  • Old Town Beach
  • Nessebar Beach
  • Spectrum Beach
  • Rich Beach

3. Burgas

Burgas is the fourth largest city in Bulgaria and the second biggest city along the Bulgarian Black Sea Coast. Being so much bigger than the rest of the places on this list, naturally its atmosphere and overall feeling is much more different. But dont cross it off your list so quickly, as there are still some interesting places one can visit.

Travellers are often drawn to Burgas by the famous Pink Lake, also known as Lake Atanasovsko. This is certainly one of the citys biggest attractions, but dont forget to explore the centre as well.

The city has a beautiful sea garden and a really long beach line that stretches over two kilometers. The sand has black grains in it and is characteristic only of this beach.

The city also has plenty to offer when it comes to entertainment. There is a wide variety of restaurants, cafés and bars to choose from and the best are scattered in or along the sea garden.

Beaches in and around Burgas

  • Irakli Beach
  • Kavatsite
  • Perla Beach
  • Harmani Beach
  • Arkutino Beach

4. Pomorie

Pomorie is a small town along the southern Black Sea Coast in Bulgaria, mostly known for its SPA and healing treatments which attract many visitors from all around the world. The local Grand Hotel Pomorie is one of the best hotels in Bulgaria for a SPA vacation, offering different lye and mud treatments.

Along with going to the beach and visiting the SPA, be sure to also explore the Old Town of Pomorie. Here you will find some beautiful houses in traditional architectural style, which still carry the authentic Bulgarian spirit of the past. You can also get familiar with the salt production in this region at the Salt Museum.

I have a dedicated post about Pomorie and my stay at Grand Hotel Pomorie, as well as some recommendations for places to visit here, so be sure to read it here.

Beaches in and around Pomorie

  • Central Beach
  • East Beach
  • South Beach

5. Chernomorets

 

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Chernomorets is a quiet resort located approximately 10 km north of Sozopol. The resort is situated over a rocky formation protruding into the water in such a way that it creates three distinct bays.

Chernomorets is also a great alternative to Sozopol for accommodation during the busiest summer months for a smaller price, perfect if you have your own transportation and can easily move around. Its considerably less busy while still offering plenty of good restaurants and calm beaches. Most of the accommodations are guest houses which are best suited to families and small groups.

One of my favorite places to eat is called Myastoto (The Place). Its a restaurant emerging every summer along the coast of Vromos bay. Make sure to ask locals for directions as it may have changed location since last year and definitely give them a call to book a table. Youll find some simple Bulgarian salads and dishes on offer prepared with highest quality vegetables and fish. Thats definitely worth a try even if you are staying in some of the neighboring resorts.

Beaches in and around Chernomorets

  • Chernomorets Beach
  • Vromos Beach
  • South Beach (Camping Chernomorets)

6. Camping Gradina (Garden) – paradise for camping lovers

Camping Gradina is nested between Sozopol and Chernomorets. It has a near unique location on our seaside in that the beach is facing north, unlike most of the resorts, that are facing east. Hence, you can enjoy the warm sunshine from the crack of dawn until around 8PM. The beach is shallow and water is calm, making it perfect for families. It has been a campers favorite for decades, but in recent years it has been enjoying a surge in popularity. That has been mainly driven by three beach bars that have created a great scene attracting young people from across the country even just for the weekend.

A few smaller campsites have emerged right next to Gradina and can offer everything from caravans and campers for rent to luxury bungalows, quiet campsites on the edge of the forest to caravans within walking distance from the bars.

No matter if your thing is basic camping or glamping, Gradina and its neighboring campsites can cover for you. If you would like to sleep in a tent or in your car, I would suggest going for the campsites closer to Sozopol as those are closer to a forest and offer some cool shade.

7. Primorsko

 

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Primorsko is located approximately 20 km south of Sozopol. The small city was built on a rocky peninsula right in the middle of two bays. Primorsko is also the place where the Strandzha mountain range meets the sea.

The resort has the second longest beach on our coastline and theres quite a lot of nature to be seen around. You could choose between the shallow bay of Perla beach with its gold sand, the North and South beaches and the Devils river mouth. If youre willing to drive several kilometers up north, you can visit the Ropotamo river mouth and its beach, the untouched beach Arkutino,the nature reserve Dyuni (Dunes) with its Drivers beach and Alepu swamp.

You may also visit the ancient Thracian sanctuary Beglik tash, and for those Instagram profiles in need of a new pic - some stunning panoramic photo spots.

One of the other strong points of Primorsko is that its not that commercialized like the resorts north of it. Still, the town has a wide range of accommodation types starting from small guest apartments to large hotels.

Beaches in and around Primorsko

  • Perla Beach
  • North Beach
  • South Beach
  • Arkutino Beach

8. Lozenets

 

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Lozenets, also referred to as LUXozenets (get it?), is actually a really normal quiet place that was just frequently visited by the rich and famous of Bulgaria of the 90s. The resort is on the smaller side and is never too crowded. There are, however, some very nice restaurants and bars to visit with the Coral beach and Arapya beach in close proximity.

A place that is also drawing many young people is Hacienda Beach bar which is easily the best party place south of Gradina. Put simply, this is a two-story beach house, conveniently situated right next to the water with much of its sea-facing wall missing. However, the balconies are left intact for those moments when you need to cool down a bit and savor the view. The beach in front of Hacienda is also available by day.

Beaches in and around Lozenets

  • Central Beach
  • Coral Beach
  • Camping Yug
  • Oasis Beach
  • Mechata Dupka Beach (Bears hole)

9. Tsarevo

Tsarevo is more of a family-oriented beach resort in Bulgaria, which offers tranquility and serenity. This coastal town is distinctive for its quiet and calm atmosphere and beautiful beaches - both sandy and rocky.

There are a few interesting places to visit in and around Tsarevo, such as Sea Garden, the Old Church of the Assumption and the lighthouse at the harbour, which is actually the southernmost harbour on the Bulgarian sea coast. The town centre is newly renovated and its the perfect open space to have your children run around and play.

There are also several beaches around Tsarevo - Central beach, Nestinarka, Popski beach and Arapya. Make sure to read my full guide on more detailed information about Tsarevo.

Beaches in and around Tsarevo

  • Central Beach
  • Nestinarka
  • Popski beach
  • Arapya
  • Oasis

10. Sinemorets

 

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Sinemorets is the southernmost beach resort on this list and its quite close to the Turkish border. Its also the place where Veleka river flows into the Black Sea, making for a picture perfect location thats worth visiting.

The town attracts many tourists thanks to its pristine natural beauty and excellent beaches. Its also very close to the Strandzha Nature Reserve which provides many trails if you want to escape the summer heat in the mountains.

Sinemorets is small and quiet, and it has two main beaches - the Bytamyata Beach and the beach at the mouth of the Veleka River.

Veleka Beach is one of my favorite beaches on the whole Bulgarian coast. The sand is surrounded by water from both sides - one is from the Veleka river (still, shallow and perfect for children to splash around) and the other one from the Black Sea (which gets deep quite quickly). This beach also offers different opportunities for water sports, such as SUPs and catamarans, which I  recommend a 100%.

If youre into more secluded places, then I definitely recommend Lipite beach - youd need to do a short hike there, but the views are definitely worth it. Keep in mind that this is a nudist beach, though when we were there, we didnt come across any nudists.

Beach in and around Sinemorets:

  • Butamyata Beach
  • Veleka Beach
  • Lipite Beach

Beach resorts in Northern Bulgaria

11. Varna

Varna, also known as the sea capital of Bulgaria, is the third largest city in the country and the largest one along the sea coast. Varna is easily accessible by plane, as there are a couple of airlines (low-cost included!) that land here.

If youre planning the city for a few days, make sure to check out my guide on the best things to do in Varna. Thanks to its rich history and interesting landmarks, the city has a lot to offer throughout all seasons. So if youre coming here for a summer holiday, make sure to spend at least a few hours away from the beach, exploring the sights within the city.

The most remarkable thing about Varna is that here you can see the oldest processed gold ever found in the world. The treasure dates back to 4400 - 4200 B.C. and is now exhibited in the Archeological Museum in Varna. Other interesting places include the Roman Baths, which are one of the most preserved architectural monuments from the ancient period in Bulgaria, the Cathedral of the Assumption of the Virgin and Sea Garden.

Beaches in and around Varna

  • Rapongi Beach
  • Asparuhovo Beach
  • Central Beach
  • South Beach
  • Officers Beach
  • First buna Beach
  • Trakata Beach

12. Balchik

 

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Going north of Varna, after about 31km you will find Balchik - a small, yet quite popular seaside town. For a long time it has been known as the White Tow because of the mainly white colour of the lime rocks.

One of the places that draws the most tourists here is the Botanical Garden of Balchik, which is  home to around 3000 plant species. You can see over 250 types of cacti, making it Europes second most important collection, after the one in Monaco.

The other popular place in Balchik is the Palace, which  dates back to 1942 and is the former summer residence of the Romanian Queen Maria Alexandrina Victoria De Edinburgh (1875 - 1938). There are other interesting sights in Balchik, but still the town is most popular for its possibilities for sea tourism. You can find beautiful beaches in the region around the town, and its the perfect spot if youre travelling with kids.

Beaches in and around Balchik

  • Central Beach
  • Nomad Beach

13. Tyulenovo

Tyulenovo is a hidden gem along the Northern Bulgarian Seaside. The place is famous for its unique stone formations, caves and crystal clear water. I might disappoint you that there are no sandy beaches here, but its beauty is very much compensating for this.

The town has pretty much remained untouched as tourism is not so popular in the northern parts of the Black Sea Coast in Bulgaria. Its great for fishing and extreme sports, such as rock climbing and scuba diving. You can rent a boat from the locals and go deeper into the waters for fishing or a trip to the caves.

The coast is ideal for adventure lovers whod like to stay in a tent directly on the rocks. The place is also a favorite for climbers, as the rocks are especially picturesque. However, if you want to go to Tyulenovo to experience the beauty of the coast without opting for a wild experience, there are several hotels and guest houses in the village to accommodate you.

Be sure to have dinner at Restaurant Delfina and enjoy a picturesque view over the famous arch formation along the coast. P.S. Bring some repellent - the mosquitoes here are ruthless!

Beach resorts in Bulgaria to avoid

Theres just one that I can put on the list - Sunny Beach.

Most of the times when I tell people Im from Bulgaria, most often I get the reaction Oooooh, Sunny Beach!. Yes, Sunny Beach is a beach resort in Bulgaria, and no, I do not like or recommend it.

Why, you may ask!? After all, its one of the most popular places in the country. Indeed it is, and this is why its filled with foreigners, mostly Brits and Germans, who come there just to party and get drunk.

I feel like Sunny Beach has turned into this party destination that doesnt really have much value, or any value whatsoever. Unless your only goal is to drink till you pass out, of course. No judgment if thats your case! It just isnt mine.

If you really want to visit Bulgaria, the real Bulgaria, then Id advise you to avoid Sunny Beach at any cost. Above Ive given you 10+ recommendations for some lovely beach resorts in Bulgaria you can choose from for your summer vacation (with Sozopol and Nessebar being my favourite!).

I hope this list is helpful and gives you a good idea of where youd like to spend your holiday. Dont hesitate to share in the comments your experience at the Bulgarian seaside, which places youve visited and what you liked or disliked about them!

 

Would you like to support my work and help me create more useful content like this? You can now buy me a virtual cup of coffee through this link. It would mean the world to me!

 

Travel Resources

For travelling in Bulgaria, I highly recommend renting a car so you are able to visit as many places as possible without being dependent on buses and trains. One of the biggest and most reliable car rental companies is Top Rent a Car. Ive used their services and was very happy with them, so I can definitely recommend them. Click here to discover car rental options.

You can find the best accommodation options at Booking. They have many discounts and excellent customer service. Click here to look for a place to stay in Bulgaria. 

Organized tours can spare you the hassle of planning the full trip by yourself. You can find a great selection of tours at Get Your Guide - click here.

Make sure to have the offline map always installed on your phone, as they can save you so many troubles. I always use the free app Maps.Me.

 


Plan your trip in Bulgaria even further:

11 Marvelous Things to do in Varna in a Weekend (Bulgarias Sea Capital)

Things to do in Pomorie - Bulgarias Spa and Wellness Resort

The Best Things to do in Tsarevo, Bulgaria - A Weekend at the Seaside

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- This article contains affiliate links. If you purchase through one of these links, I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. This helps me keep the blog going and provide even more useful information to you. Thank you! -

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