Bulgaria holidays

With traditional beach resorts and glorious nature all around you, it’s no surprise that Bulgaria holidays are becoming more popular. This wonderful country has beach holidays for all tastes, tons of water sports, and some incredible scenery to explore. Whether you’re looking for a romantic getaway or an escape for the whole family, we’ve got lots of holidays in Bulgaria that’ll suit you.

Where is Bulgaria?

With Turkey and Greece to the south, Bulgaria is on the easternmost edge of Europe. It’s coastline is edged by the Black Sea with Romania directly to the north. This coast has miles and miles of beautiful golden beaches.

Bulgaria may be new as a tourist destination, this beautiful country actually sits at a crossroads of Ancient European culture, and is a real hidden gem that you should seriously look at if you love something a little different from the usual ‘tourist hot spots’.

So perfect is Bulgaria’s position in south-eastern Europe that it’s the site of many historic trade routes, and the coastal city of Varna was an exceptionally important trading port. This rich history gives Bulgaria much of its deep and fascinating culture.

Thanks to the sunny beaches in the east and the high mountains in the west, Bulgaria has the ideal geography for beach holidays as well as snowy winter escapes, making it an all-year-round destination. From snowshoeing and skiing in Bankso to sunbathing and swimming on the Black Sea, Bulgaria sits in a part of Europe that is undeniably magical and a fabulous destination for a holiday, winter or summer.

Things to do

There are so many things to do here, many first time visitors will wonder why they’ve never thought of visiting this amazing destination before! With water sports, sunbathing and luxury resorts on the Black Sea coast - this is destination you definitely need to add to your list of must-see places.

You’ll find rich and varied history here with ancient artefacts, sprawling medieval cities, and remote churches. You can easily have a perfect family holiday in Bulgaria, with a blend of warm sandy beaches and touring the cobbled seaside historic towns of Nessebar and Sozopol. 

Explore the beautiful Bulgarian landscape

If you love spending your holidays getting back to nature, there are all kinds of landscapes to explore in Bulgaria. Take a trip through the countryside, through wild woodlands and quaint villages, or put on your hiking boots and go trekking in the vast mountain ranges.

Along the coast, the golden sands give way to the waters of the Black Sea for the ultimate in beachside relaxation. The coastline here is rugged and beautiful with cliffs and fields giving way to long, uninterrupted beaches. There are plenty of watersports on offer at Sunny Beach, so hop on a boat trip and see the coast from the water. Children will love a visit to a waterpark, and parents can grab a cocktail and lie back in the sunshine while the little ones have fun.

During the winter months, the ski resorts in Bansko come to life as powder descends on the quaint cobbled village. The slopes are forested, with snow resting heavily on the branches of the pine trees all winter long, creating a picture-perfect winter wonderland.

Bulgaria’s astounding history

Steeped in ancient history, Bulgaria has some fascinating historic sites to explore. From traditional monasteries to Byzantine churches, you’ll uncover stunning architecture at every turn. At Beglik Tash, you can get up close to the mystical rocks at the ‘Bulgarian Stonehenge’.

After exploring the ruins of Bulgaria’s bygone eras, head back to the towns and cities to browse modern shopping centres, eat at family-run restaurants, and catch a glimpse of traditional folk festivals. In capital Varna, don’t miss a trip to the cathedral, where you’ll be greeted by a huge Orthodox building topped with dazzling golden domes.

Embrace the local cuisine

Your holiday to Bulgaria wouldn’t be complete without tucking into the delicious local food. Inspired by its Greek and Turkish neighbours, traditional dishes are a wonderful fusion of Middle-Eastern and Mediterranean flavours.

For lovers of a great mixed grill, try Meshana Skara with its delicious meat skewers and classic kyufte (meatballs). Moussaka is another firm favourite in Bulgaria, especially with a dollop of Bulgarian yoghurt on the side. With cheese pastries, Bulgarian Sirene cheese and spicy cured sausage, the food in Bulgaria will tickle your tastebuds and introduce you to some new and exciting flavours.

Places to stay

With its miles of golden sands and variety of bars and hotels, Sunny Beach certainly lives up to its name; this huge resort has everything from waterparks for the kids, to all-night clubbing for party-loving adults, and a fabulous beach for soaking up the warm rays. From here, it’s easy to explore the rest of the Black Sea coast, including the peaceful resort of Duni, to the cultural cities of Burgas and Varna.

More Travel Guides

We also have travel guides available for destinations including: Bansko | Borovets | Duni | Golden Sands Resort | Sunny Beach Resort

Map of Bulgaria

world_map
26-28 ℃

Relax on the beach during the warm, dry, sunny summers on the Black Sea coast.

3 to 3.5 hours

If you’re going to the warm Black Sea resorts, Bourgas airport lies 35km south of Sunny Beach and 40km northwest of Duni.

Bulgaria is best for...

Sun seekers: Enjoy a relaxing swim in the Black Sea and all-day sunbathing on Sunny Beach.

History lovers: Bask in the late afternoon sun, as you stroll around the historic town Nessebar with its 5thcentury church and Byzantine-era baths.

Fast facts for Bulgaria

Language: The language spoken here is Bulgarian.

Currency: The official currency is the Bulgarian Lev (or Leva) and although you might see prices in Euros, this is only for reference.

Local time: Bulgaria is 2 hours ahead of GMT/UK time.

Fly to: Bourgas Airport or Varna airport. Transfers to the city take around 1 hour. 

Flight time from UK: The flight time to Bulgaria is 3–3.5 hours.

Tourist information: More information on holidays to Bulgaria can be found at https://bulgariatravel.org.

Visa / health: Before you travel, visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/bulgaria for recommendations and advice on visas and health for your holiday.

 

Getting around Bulgaria

By bus: Travelling by privately-run buses is a great way to get around on a budget. These high-speed routes allow you to explore far and wide in comfort, without hitting your wallet too hard.

By hire car: Rent a car to really get off the beaten track. Explore the country’s many hidden villages, although bear in mind that most signs are in Cyrillic. Take a map and have a truly adventurous holiday to Bulgaria.

By train: Seeing this country by train is a wonderfully romantic way to get around. This destination has great domestic train lines as well as buses that cross international borders to Turkey, Greece, and Romania.

By taxi: Taxis are easy to find and very affordable, but make sure the meter is switched on. Ask your hotel to write your destination in Bulgarian script in case the driver can’t speak English.

Events in Bulgaria

Easter: During Orthodox Easter, families head to local churches and play games with coloured eggs on Holy Saturday. This traditional event gives visitors a great insight into the culture here.

Varna: In historic Varna, throughout the summer there’s music, theatre and folklore in outdoor stages across the city.

Folklore festival: The ancient capital, Veliko Tarnovo, holds its annual Folklore Festival when it comes alive with singing, dancing, and acts from all over the world.

Roses are red: Harvests are widely celebrated, and you can enjoy one of these traditional events in June’s with the Rose Festival in Kazanlak in the centre of the country.

Bulgaria weather

Temperature: 26 (°C) to 28 (°C).

Bulgaria holidays have the perfect summer sun at the Black Sea resorts, with temperatures up to 28 (°C). This means you can sunbathe, swim, and play beach games without getting too hot. Rainfall tends to increase a little over summer, but it soon dries out in the sun. Temperatures hover in the mid-teens during the spring and autumn, making these seasons perfect for trekking.

Best hotels in Bulgaria

Popular Bulgaria holiday resorts

Similar destinations