5 Best Places to Visit in Sofia, Bulgaria

Sofia is the Capitol of Bulgaria. It is located in the skirts of the Vitosha mountain and is a place which one million people call their home. Even though it is considered overcrowded by Bulgarian standards, it still has its own personal charm, which is hard to deny.

The small homes on the outskirts, giant buildings before them and typical early 20th-century architecture in the centre, make it a mix of culture and technology worth visiting.

Metro Station Serdika

When it comes to tourism and exploration, the last place which comes to a person’s mind is a metro station, but in Bulgaria, things are different than what you expect from the rest of the world.

The town has ripe 7,000 years of history and often one will unintentionally stumble upon it. While digging the tunnels for the metro system, construction workers found remains of Roman buildings. Now, when walking through the station, one can see and touch the remains of an ancient legacy.

While waiting for the train car to come, visitors can check out antiques which have been placed in glass boxes, just like in a museum.

The best part of it is that the metro ticket is times cheaper than a visit to a museum.

For those who do not fancy the subterranean experience of the metro, there is a solution too. The whole area around the Serdika metro station is filled with remains of ancient architecture spanning from the President’s residence to the St.Nedelia church.

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral

After the Russian-Turkish war for the liberation of Bulgaria was over, this monument was established in commemoration of all the people who died for the freedom of the country.

It is the biggest cathedral on the Balkans and a testament to architectural and iconographic mastery.

Everything from the heavy wooden door, the tall portraits of saints, the tzar’s throne and the image of Providence drawn upon the ceiling are a must-see for every cultural or religious tourist who finds himself in the city of Sofia.

Sofia University

Sofia University is the first institution of higher education to have been established during the third Bulgarian tzardom.

The rectorate building is both a functioning educational facility and a Bulgarian cultural monument.

A single look at it gives viewers the impression of a building with a history. The typical late 19th-century architecture, combined with the giant statues of the brothers Hristo and Evlogi Georgiev who financed the creation of the building, is an impressive work of art. This is not all, as the interior of the building is just as magnificent as expected. Giant marble stairways, beautiful paintings and the creaky wooden doors all reveal a story, which is worth listening to.

Beautiful Nature 

Those who prefer nature’s calm embrace are always welcome in Sofia. There are series of big parks within city’s limits, which are all impressive. The southern park has all forms of urban delight like snacks, entertainment and its own music scene, all placed among the threes.

Those who prefer a more calm relaxation can go to Boris’ garden, which offers a large variety of plants, monuments and even its very own observatory.

For those who seek the completely wild and untamed experience of nature, Vitosha mountain is always as close as a single bus ride away.

National Palace of Culture

The National Palace of Culture is one of Sofia’s most emblematic buildings. Built-in 1981 as part of Bulgaria’s celebration for 1300 years of Bulgarian history, it remains the biggest congress centre in South-Eastern Europe.

It houses 13 halls in which different cultural events take place. Music concerts, art exhibitions, art performances, folklore performances, The Day of the Book, and many others find their place under the roof of this building. The building holds an area of 123,000sq metres, has eight floors and three underground levels. The first hall alone can hold about 3,400 people, which means that everyone can find something for themselves between the walls of this cultural mastodon.

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Bozhidar Lazarov

Bozhidar Lazarov is a freelance writer, hobbyist programmer and an aspired novelist. Feel free to follow him on https://www.minds.com/seriousways for his latest articles and personal projects.

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