Bulgaria’s capital city has an interesting history, friendly people, and many truly unique buildings that are guaranteed to wow even the most jaded of world travellers. There is simply too much to see and do in Sofia to possibly do justice to with a short travel guide. This means that this blog is just a brief introduction to the fun activities you can do in and around Sofia and we encourage you to spend a little more time reading through our blog and discovering more about the city and about Bulgaria as a whole. And if anything piques your interest, you may like to consider one of our Private Bulgaria Day Tours. Whatever your plans, keep reading to discover some great fun activities you can do in Sofia!
Explore Sofia’s top Shops on Vitosha Boulevard
If you love shopping in boutiques and trendy clothes stores, then Vitosha Boulevard is going to be a very fun time for you. The boulevard takes its name from the epic mountain that is clearly visible to the southwest, and even if you aren’t partial to shopping, you will enjoy taking in the bustle and ambience of one of Sofia’s most important streets and its cafes and restaurants. Be careful, though: if you spend too much time admiring the mountain at the end, you may be overcome with the urge to climb it…
Climb Vitosha Mountain
Perhaps this option feels like we’re cheating as Vitosha Mountain isn’t strictly in Sofia, but bear with us… Anyone who has visited Sofia knows that Vitosha Mountain stands above it and it is clearly visible from any part of the city. In this way, Vitosha Mountain very much feels part of Sofia, and anyone capable of climbing a 2,200m mountain who spends more than a few days in the city will find themselves itching to climb this majestic hunk of rock and to look down on the city. Besides, it’s relatively easy to get to Vitosha Mountain as there are a variety of options using public transport. You can find detailed information in several languages on the website of Nature Park ‘Vitosha’. The time it takes to climb to the top of the mountain depends on your route, but expect to hike between 2 and 4 hours to reach the top. And then there’s the descent. Vitosha is also quite popular with the local rock-climbing community as its crags are suitable for both pros and beginners alike. If you’d like to know more about climbing in Bulgaria, check out our blog titled 5 Reasons to Climb in Bulgaria.
Visit St Alexander Nevski Cathedral
While visiting landmarks isn’t everyone’s idea of fun, taking in the vast scale of this epic Cathedral will be the highlight of many visitors’ Sofia trip. However, as impressive as this cathedral is from the outside, it looks even better on the inside — but you aren’t allowed to take pictures of it, so you will need to discover it for yourself… This cathedral dates back to the 1880s where it was built almost immediately after the Ottomans were overthrown, and it was dedicated to the Russian soldiers who died liberating the country. You can also delve into the cathedral’s crypt where you’ll find a fascinating collection of icons.
Go Stand-Up Paddle Boarding FROM Sofia
While Bulgaria certainly isn’t the country that comes to mind when you think about stand-up paddle boarding, thus fun activity is getting extremely popular in Sofia. The Bulgarian capital can’t boast kilometer long city canals like Amsterdam or numerous river channels like Berlin, but there are a number of great SUP locations around Sofia that you can reach within an hour or so. The active SUP season occurs between April and November. You can opt for an organized SUP daytrip, a SUP training session or simply rent the equipment and decide what to do on your own. If you are interested to learn more, get in touch with us and we will answer all your questions.
Visit Kuklite – An Art House for Dolls
Whether you’re travelling with kids or you’re simply always open to new, slightly strange experiences, you are guaranteed to have fun at Kuklite, the doll and puppet art museum. You’ve never seen anything like this before, as there are over 3000 different dolls and puppets in the museum, made from many different materials in various different styles. Some may find the thousands of little cloth and porcelain characters unnerving, while others will find them charming. But whichever emotions these little wonders illicit in you, you’re guaranteed to have a fun time.
That’s all we have time for today. This guide only scratches the surface of Sofia, but we hope it has at least inspired one or two readers to visit our great capital city in the future. If you’d like to get more out of your visit, consider taking Excedo Travel’s Discover Sofia Walking Tour and read our blog about why you should visit Sofia if you’d like to learn more about this wonderful city. If you have any questions whatsoever, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.