Places You Must See In Bulgaria This Winter
Sofia, Bulgaria -
Now that we’re nearing the beginning of the winter season, the nature of tourism around Europe is going to shift. People will be looking for charming towns to visit, beautiful places to see (or ski) and places with reliable indoor entertainment, where they might be able to escape cold conditions without simply holing up in a hotel. Winter tourism can be a little challenging sometimes because of these same conditions, but ultimately the season can lead to some wonderful discoveries as well.
As far as a visit to Bulgaria is concerned, these are some of the places and sights you must see during a winter trip.
Bansko Ski Area
Many don’t think of Bulgaria as a ski destination simply because the Alps in Western Europe tend to overshadow everything else on the continent. However, Bansko is something of a hidden gem within the international skiing community. Now said to be one of the destinations that rivals the Alps, it’s known as a dynamic resort area with slopes ranging from beginner to high-level, regularly excellent conditions, and a lively town full of aprés-ski attractions. Naturally it’s one of the best places to see in the whole country during the winter.
Many countries throughout Europe are famous for their Christmas markets, and Bulgaria is no exception. In particular, the German-style Weihnachtsmarkt in the town of Sofia is recommended as a charming winter attraction. The town is quite cold over the holiday season, but the Weihnachtsmarkt warms it with charm in the form of twinkling lights, decorations, and a festive collection of stalls for comfort food, drinks, and goods that can be bought as gifts.
Nymphes Princess Casino
Casino culture has become increasingly dynamic throughout Europe. Certainly, new trends within the industry are worth keeping up with as internet and mobile casinos take off across the continent. That said there’s still something wonderful about finding a classy casino that exists in real, physical space! Plus, it’s a nice option for some late-night, indoor entertainment no matter how cold it is outside. There are a few casinos throughout the country, but the Nymphes Princess Casino is the best of them.
Sticking with indoor attractions, it’s never too cold or wintery to visit a beautiful museum. Located in Sofia, the Bulgarian National Gallery holds over 50,000 pieces of art that are specifically of Bulgarian origin. Not to mention the building itself is stunning. The gallery occupies the former royal palace in Battenberg Square, and it itself one of the prettier sights in the country any time - winter included.
Natural hot springs exist throughout much of the country, and naturally make for excellent places to escape to when the weather cools off. There are multiple options, but Velingrad is sometimes referred to as the spa capital of the Balkans, and with good reason. Suffice it to say a beautiful, modern spa resort area has sprung up in response to natural hot springs in the area, making for one of the country’s most enjoyable winter recreation spots.
Plovdiv Old Town
The city of Plovdiv has a famous Old Town that is spread across three hilltops. Granted, that makes it somewhat inaccessible if there is snow or ice on the ground. However, the Old Town’s inherent charms are amplified during the winter, when there’s a certain quaintness to touring through buildings that date back hundreds of years.