Flight and hotel Sofia
Sofia: A city of surprises
With a population of close to 1.5 million people, unsurprisingly Sofia is the largest city in Bulgaria. Being also one of the oldest cities in Europe, Sofia is bound to charm you with its timeless beauty. A long and rich history has marked its urban landscape, making it a place where churches from the 3rd century coexist with Soviet-style concrete apartment blocks. Surrounded by three mountains, Sofia is a good choice for a city break and a nature getaway. One thing is certain – you will not be bored here.
Practicalities of Sofia
There are daily scheduled flights from London to Sofia International Airport, but if you prefer, you can also fly to Sofia from Manchester a couple of times per week. The flight takes thee hours and local time is two hours ahead of the UK. Remember that you need some local currency (Bulgarian lev) during your stay. You can exchange currency before your flight to Sofia or at any local bank office. The best way to get to Sofia from the airport is by metro or taxi. Local taxis only accept cash payments. The local language is Bulgarian, but getting around with English is easy.
When to visit Sofia?
Sofia’s climate is diverse throughout the year. Winters can be very cold, with temperatures up to -14C, and summers turning the heat of up to 40C. For a more moderate experience, the best time for city breaks in Sofia is April to June or late September to October.
What to do in Sofia?
- Discover the nightlife of with a weekend in Sofia – it has something for everyone. In a romantic mood? Try the Royal Piano Club (in the National Palace of Culture) or Piano Bar Chicago. If you want to explore young local bands, head to Swingin’ Hall. For the brave-hearted, a visit to a local pop-folk nightclub might be thrilling – try Plazza. Party crowds are friendly and closing times are known to expand proportionally to the fun of the night.
- With Vitosha Mountain accessible by public transport, car or taxi, there is always an outdoor activity on hand. In winter, skiing and snowboarding opportunities are the biggest attraction for visitors on city breaks to Sofia or on package holidays in Sofia. In summer, you could take the Simeonovo lift and hike in nature.
- If you are not a night owl or a hiker, you can enjoy the cultural side of a weekend in Sofia. With a variety of museums and cultural initiatives, Sofia is never quiet.
Must-see destinations in Sofia
After booking your flight and hotel in Sofia, make sure to plan time for these attractions:
- Saint Alexander Nevski Cathedral – emblematic of the city, this church will impress you with its architecture and atmosphere.
- Church of St. George – the oldest building in Sofia, built in the 4th century by the Romans. Already impressive on its own, its location in the city centre makes for a beautiful contrast with the urban surroundings.
- Vitosha Boulevard – a shopping paradise, this pedestrian boulevard is also great for people watching. With many cafes on the street, you can enjoy a hot cup of tea with a view of Vitosha Mountain.
- Ivan Vazov National Theatre – another iconic Sofia building, the theatre is also a gathering place for young people and families on hot summer days. The garden and big fountain in front of the theatre provide a good photo opportunity.
- Sofia City Art Gallery – if you don’t have much time in Sofia, this gallery will give you a taste of contemporary Bulgarian art.
What to eat in Sofia?
Book a flight and hotel to Sofia and you'll be sure to fall in love with the cuisine. With tasty vegetables, grilled meat and aromatic herbs, it has a homely feel. Your three must-tries are:
- Banitsa – a favourite Bulgarian pastry with cheese. Ideal for breakfast or brunch. It goes well with a glass of Ayran (salted yoghurt diluted with water)
- Kebapcheta – the local meat speciality, usually served with a big salad or boiled potatoes.
- Pyrlenka – oven-made bread.
What to bring back?
Traditional for Bulgaria and surprisingly affordable, rose products are a great present. Original and affordable local art can also be a nice souvenir – have a look at the artists’ market in front of Alexander Nevski Cathedral.