Sofia

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The National Palace of Culture



Sofia (София) is the capital of Bulgaria.

For information about travelling to Sofia see also the Lonely Planet Tips about Sofia.

Couchsurfing community

Sofia has the biggest Couchsurfing community in Bulgaria. As of August 2009 there are 1,753 members. The monthly meeting is held on the 13th of every month and is announced in the Sofia Group.

Check the Sofia CS Google Calendar for more events.

Getting there and away

By plane

  • Information about the Sofia Airport (SOF) on Wikipedia.

From the old airport (Terminal 1) take Bus 84 to the City Center. From the new airport (Terminal 2) Take Bus 284 to the City Center.

By train

By Bus

Popular Destinations

Istanbul

There is one train leaving Sofia at 19h, but it takes 13 hours. Buses are much faster and more flexible. Bus ticket is between 40 and 50lv for a oneway trip, 75-95lv for a round trip.

Bus Companies serving Istanbul:

  • Metro Plus [1] Going at 09:00, 12:00,17.00, 20:30, 23:00 from Central Bus Station
  • Has Turizm [2] Going at 10:30, 22:30 from Bus Station Serdika (You can buy Tickets from Air Kona Office]
  • Alpar Turizm [3] Going at 22:30? from Serdika Bus Station (Buy Tickets from MATPU-96 Office, they also have the exact timetable)
  • Materik Going at 9:00, 21:00 from Central Bus Station

More Companies see Turkey Travel Planner

Wien

Possibilities i tried:

  • By Bus with Air Kona. The Bus goes daily from Vienna-VIB/Erdberg to Sofia "Trafik Market" (The old bus stations between the rail station and the new bus station). The tickets can be bought via Eurolines.at or at the Air Konu office at Trafik Market (Attention Eurolines.bg is a different company, of which i have heard not so good reviews).

A two-way ticket is 98EUR/190lv, a one-way ticket is 61EUR/120lv.

  • If you for some reasons can't take the Air Konu bus, there is the Union Ivkoni Bus. It starts daily in the Netherlands and goes via various german cities to Vienna. It arrives in Vienna at around 4.00am at the touris bus stop "Belvedere" at Landstrasser Guertel on the opposite site of Südbahnhof. One way ticket is 56EUR and in my case included a free lunch sandvich at a serbian restaurant (huge white bread with lots of hot, fat, spicy meat).
  • Bulgaria Air. The flight goes to and from the new Airport in Sofia (Terminal 2). The included food is very basic, but you can get bulgarian wine if you like it. When i was there the bus stop at Terminal 2 was not where the signs say but in front of the entrance.

Possibilities i have not tried:

  • Train. It is slower than the bus, 20hour versus approx 13hours.

Hitchhiking

Getting around in Sofia

  • The Sofia Public Transport Company operates one metro line, ca. 20 Tramway lines, ca. 10 Trolleybuslines and ca. 100 buslines. Tickets can be bought on the vehicle and at kiosks near the stops.

Staying in Sofia

Sights

  • Parliament
  • Presidential Palace
  • Sofia University
  • National Palace of Culture (NDK)
  • Ivan Vazov Theater
  • National Library
  • Mineral Baths

Religious Buildings

  • Alexander Nevski Cathedral
  • Hagia Sophia Church
  • Sv. Nedelya
  • Sv. Georgi
  • Russian Church
  • Boyana Church
  • Banya Bashi Mosque
  • Sofia Synagogue

Parks

  • Borisova Gardina
  • City Garden
  • Vitosha

Eating

Typical Bulgarian food includes: