Best things to do in Sofia
Find out more about those top places in Sofia
Sofia the official capital of Bulgaria is one of those cities that has managed to stay hidden from the eyes of tourists but has turned out to be a gold mine for those who have managed to discover it.
Sofia a small but busy city with about 1.7 million citizens is located at the western part of the country, below Mount Vitosha. Distinguished by its architectural beauty, beautiful scenery and hospitable citizens, it has been able to fuse both its old culture with the modern style of today. From visiting cathedrals to museums to bars, one is sure to have a swell time in Bulgaria’s capital.
Completed in 1912, the cathedral has a Neo-Byzantine style and has the capacity to hold about 5,000 people. The building is a monument for the Bulgarian and Russian men who lost their lives for the liberation of the nation during the Russian-Turkish war of 1878-1879. Named after prince Alexander Nevsky who was a 13th century King before he was later declared a saint. The cathedral domes are covered in gold and has 12 bells that were made in Moscow. It also has a crypt where a small museum dedicated to Christian art can be found.
A trip to the national History Museum will surely buff up your knowledge of Sofia and Bulgaria. Established on 5th may 1973 the museum features over 650,000 archaic items from the Stone age to Middle age to modern times. Separated into five different halls each representing different significant times in Bulgaria’s history. Some items on exhibition include weapons, maps, documents from the national revival, traditional clothes and jewelries.
The communist-era retro looking bar is one of the top destinations for tourist visiting Sofia. Raketa is home to the famous national beverage “Rakia”. The bar is located just across Zaimov park’s main alley, it is decorated with some Bulgarian memorabilia to give it that homely feel. It also doubles as a restaurant, so visitors can get a taste of the local delicacies as well. Raketa Rakia Bar is easily a great place to get a feel of the Bulgarian culture and meet locals.
For a breath of fresh air, step away to the Borislova Gradina, the park is the biggest and oldest in Sofia. Named after Bulgarian Tsar Boris III it was constructed in 1884 by three different successful gardeners; Joseph Frei, Daniel Neff and Georgi Duhtev for over 50 years. The park also features the Borislova Gradina TV Tower, a 14 story building which was the headquarters for the first Bulgarian National Television broadcasts in 1959.
If you love shopping, then the Bitaka Flea Market is for you. Located at next to the St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, the market is full of vendors selling different items. Some items you can find in the market include jewelry, clothes, old photographs and bags. It is a wonderful place to get some souvenirs to remember your time in the city.