About Sofia

Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria, is the largest city of the country and lies at the feet of the Vitosha mountains. Spanning around 492 km² and sitting 550 meters above the sea level, this city is home to 1.26 million Sofians. The city has vast historical importance as human habitation started around 7000 B.C. Since its inception, the city has been witness to many shifts in power. Roman, Turkish, and Bulgarian influences over the city are evident through various monuments and landmarks. With scattered Onion-domed Churches, Ottoman mosques, and Red Army monuments, the visitors are often left spell-bounded. Beyond its historical monuments, Sofia offers its visitors many recreational and party spots throughout the city.

Public Transport System

Bus, trams, metro, and trolleybuses are the primary means of public transportation in Bulgaria. The services run from 5:30 a.m. until 11:00 p.m. every day. Taxis are also available for rent.

Cleanliness and Efficiency

Cleanliness: High, Efficiency: High

Mode & Cost of Transports

Bus, trolley bus, metro and tram tickets cost 1.60 LEV and can be bought from the machine just behind the driver's cabin.

Taxi fare starts from as low as 0.80 LEV.  

Basic Items & Cost

Name Price
Water Bottle USD 1.21
Cup of Coffee USD 1.21
Milk Carton Pack USD 1.21
Rice/Kg USD 1.21
White Bread USD 0.61
Eggs (12) USD 1.82
Combo Meal USD 4.85
Fine Dining USD 30.30
Bottle of Coke or Pepsi USD 1.21
Domestic Beer USD 1.82
Imported Beer USD 1.82
Bottle of Wine USD 6.06
Cigarettes (20 Pack) USD 3.64
Taxi ( 1 km ) USD 0.61
Ticket in local transport (Single way). USD 1.21
Rent ( One Bed Room) USD 413.29

Do(s)

  • When using the local currency, acquire it from an ATM, as other currency exchange centers might charge extra.
  • To avoid a penalty, buy an extra ticket for your luggage in case you decide to travel downtown by bus from the airport.
  • If you use a public toilet, buy toilet paper first, as they don’t offer toilet paper.
  • Be careful with beggars--some of them can be troublesome or even pickpocket.
  • Keep this in mind to avoid confusion: "Yes," is conveyed through shaking the head and a "No," through nodding the head; this is opposite to most practices around the world.
  • Keep your wallets and other belongings safe, especially while in crowded places or on public transport.
  • Contact the police in an emergency or when lost.
  • If you are visiting in winter, bring lots of woolen clothing, as the temperature can drop as low as -5°C.


Don’t(s)

  • Don’t visit pedestrian subways located far from the center at night, for the safety reasons.
  • Avoid using public toilets, as they might not have proper facilities installed.
  • Don’t carry any firearms.
  • Don’t trust hotel star ratings, which can often be misleading.
  • Don’t expect a smoke-free place as almost everyone smokes.
  • Avoid taxis as an alternative means of transportation, as their condition might not be up to the mark.

Night Life

Sofia nightlife is amazing--with the number of people bar-hopping regularly, the city truly comes alive at night. With few restrictions, the nightclub scene in Sofia has a fun and liberated atmosphere. Bars can serve alcohol around the clock in the city because of lenient licensing laws and parties generally take over the club until 6:00 in the morning. Due to the prevalent ‘Underground’ culture, there are plenty of opportunities to see live music. Thursday, Friday, and Saturday are the best nights to party in Sofia. Apart from going to clubs, one can visit strip clubs in the city which offer drinks at an affordable rate. The strip clubs do not provide sexual services.

Must See

  • Visit Vitosha Mountain for a beautiful and peaceful experience.
  • Visit the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral for a religious and spiritual experience.
  • Visit Banya Bashi Mosque to relive the Turkish chapter in the city.
  • Boyana Church, one of the UNESCO World Heritage, lies at the base of Mount Vitosha and must be visited.
  • Experience opera and ballet in Sofia.
  • Sofia’s Puppet Theater is another must-see for families traveling with children.
  • Alexander Nevsky Antiques Market is a must-visit for travellers.
  • Visit many museums to engage with the city’s culture and history.
  • Visit Sofia Live Club to enjoy the city's largest live-music club.
  • Enjoy the Underground experience to witness events ranging from classic rock to metal concerts.
  • Visit strip clubs for relaxation.
  • Visit Raketa Rakia Bar to relive the Communist-Bulgarian era.

Experiences

  • Move your feet along to techno, house, disco, retro and pop music.
  • Taste freshly baked cakes and bread at Vila Rosich.
  • Go for an air-tour in Sofia.
  • Tempus Vini Wine Point serves amazing wine. 
  • Serdika Mall gives you an economical shopping experience.
  • Go pub-hopping to enjoy Sofia's nightlife. 

    Activities

    SwissSki
    Ski
    ul. Kazbek 59, 1680 Manastirski Livadi, Sofia, Bulgaria
    Distance From City Center
    4.4 Kms
    Casino Princess
    Casino
    131 Maria Luisa Blvd, Sofia 1202, Bulgaria, Sofia 1202, Bulgaria
    Distance From City Center
    4.2 Kms
    Casino Sofia
    Casino
    pl. Narodno sabranie 4, 1000 Sofia Center, Sofia, Bulgaria
    Distance From City Center
    2.7 Kms
    Ski Track Vitoshko Lale
    Ski
    ul. Stefan Stambolov, 1444, Bulgaria
    Distance From City Center
    12.2 Kms
    Ski Service
    Ski
    ul. Samokov 28, 1113 g.k. Iztok, Sofia, Bulgaria
    Distance From City Center
    3.9 Kms
    Golf Klub Ibar
    Golf
    Sofia, Izgrev, Ul. Anton Pavlovich Chehov 69, Bulgaria
    Distance From City Center
    6.3 Kms
    St. Sofia Golf Club & SPA
    Golf
    2129 Равно поле, Bulgaria
    Distance From City Center
    23.7 Kms
    Royale Palms Casino
    Casino
    14 Todor Alexandov Blvd | Anel Hotel, Sofia 1233, Bulgaria
    Distance From City Center
    3.3 Kms
    Zoo Sofia
    Zoo
    ul.Srebarna 1, Sofia 1407, Bulgaria
    Distance From City Center
    3.6 Kms

    Shopping

    No data available

    Ethnic garments, jewelry boxes, dolls, ceramic plates, Gyuvetch pots, Tsarvuli or Opintsi shoes, rose oil, rakia (local liquor), Martenista (traditional Bulgarian souvenir), Kukeri masks, rugs, gramophone, Russian fur hat, army and war medals, Soviet military watches, hand-knitted socks, communist memorabilia, Bulgarian white cheese, lavender products, traditional and modern Potteries, vintage kitchenware. 

    Official Language

    Bulgarian

    Other Language

    Turkish, Romani, English, and ... Read more

    Spoken Language

    Bulgarian, the local language,... Read more

    Currency

    Bulgarian Lev (BGN)

    Population

    1.26 (Millions)

    Weather Icon

    Weather

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    Clock Icon

    TimeZone

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    Ambulance Icon

    Ambulance

    150

     

    Police Icon

    Police

    166

     

    Electric socket

    Type C
    Type C ( 220 V 50 Hz)
    Type E
    Type E ( 230 V 50 Hz)
    Type F
    Type F ( 220 V 50 Hz)
    Airplane Icon

    Airport Name / IATA Code

    Sofia - SOF

    Best time to visit

    March, April, May, June - The climate during these months of the year is pleasant and you can enjoy the snow on a fine sunny afternoon. June is the peak of the holiday season, and there is a rise in tourists and accommodation prices during the month.

    Moderate time to visit

    July, August, September, October, November - The temperature is on the higher side, but it is quite bearable. By October, rainfall is to be expected, so if you are planning outdoor expeditions, it is best to keep a rain check.

    Worst time to visit

    December, January, February - With temperatures dipping as low as -5°C and the average lowest temperature fluctuating around -1°C to -5°C, it can be difficult to cope with the climate during this part of the year. Some small towns are closed to tourists during this time.

    Taxi

    Start Tariff: BGN 0.80

    1 Km. Tariff: BGN 0.80

    1 Hour Waiting Tariff: BGN 13.20

    Available service

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    Monthly Average Temperature & Rainfall

    Local Services in Sofia (Contact directly)

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