The 5 Best Things to Do in Sofia

Sofia, the capital city of Bulgaria, is a hidden gem waiting to be explored. With its rich history, stunning architecture, and vibrant culture, there is no shortage of attractions and things to do in this beautiful city. From ancient ruins to modern art galleries, Sofia has it all. Whether you’re a history buff, art lover, or simply looking for a good time, this post will guide you through the best attractions and activities the city has to offer. So, without further ado, let’s dive into the fascinating world of Sofia!

The 5 Best Things to Do in Sofia

  1. Valley of the Thracian Kings Hidden Treasures
  2. Tour to Lovech Devetaki Cave and Krushuna Waterfalls
  3. Stob Pyramids and Rila Monastery Private Hiking Tour from Sofia
  4. Plovdiv History and Craft Beer Tour
  5. The Essential Western Bulgaria in 4 Days

The 5 Best Things to Do in Sofia

1. Valley of the Thracian Kings Hidden Treasures

Dive deep into Bulgarian history on a 10-hour guided group tour to the Valley of the Thracian Kings region. Travel comfortably in round-trip transportation from your Sofia accommodation and enjoy free admission to all attractions. Along the way, listen to mysterious stories about Orpheus and Spartacus. Explore the UNESCO listed Tomb of Kazanlak, the Ostrusha Tomb and the Golyama Kosmatka Mound. Discover a mythical side of Bulgarian history and take a break from the hustle and bustle. The tour includes a professional guide and hotel pickup and drop-off. The pickup point is flexible and can be arranged from any point in Sofia. Visit museums and historical sites, including the Iskra Historical Museum. Learn about Bulgarian history and culture from the knowledgeable tour guide. Our tour provides a comprehensive itinerary that lets you cover many destinations in a short amount of time. Don’t miss the Valley of the Thracian Kings hidden treasures.

2. Tour to Lovech Devetaki Cave and Krushuna Waterfalls

If you’re looking for a perfect day trip from Sofia, Lovech Devetàshka cave and Krushuna Falls tour is an excellent choice. The tour is designed to give you a break from the busy city life and let you explore the rural region’s natural beauty and culture with a professional guide. You’ll not have to worry about transport as the tour includes hotel pickup and drop-off in an air-conditioned vehicle.
During the tour, you’ll get to admire the stunning views of northern Bulgaria’s natural landscape, and your guide will provide you with insightful information about the region’s history and culture. As it is a small-group tour, you’ll get a more personalized experience.
The Lovech Devetàshka cave and Krushuna Falls tour is inclusive of local taxes, a professional guide, hotel pickup and drop-off, food and drinks, and gratuities.
The tour starts at 8:00 a.m. with hotel pickup from any location in Sofia.
One of the attractions included in the tour is The Covered Bridge, where you can spend 20 minutes admiring the unique architecture and beautiful surroundings.

3. Stob Pyramids and Rila Monastery Private Hiking Tour from Sofia

Discover the unique natural wonder of Stob’s Pyramids on a private hiking tour led by a knowledgeable guide. Wander among the striking rock formations and take in the stunning scenery while learning about their fascinating geological history. Afterward, uncover Bulgarian culture with a visit to the Rila Monastery, Bulgaria’s largest monastery and a UNESCO World Heritage site. Admire the intricate frescoes and learn about the religious significance of this important landmark. Sample delicious homemade “banitsa” pastries and enjoy the convenience of private, door-to-door transport. Please note that entrance fees and lunch are not included in the tour. Hotel pickup is available at 9 am.

4. Plovdiv History and Craft Beer Tour

Immerse yourself in Bulgaria’s long and impressive past with the Plovdiv History and Craft Beer Tour. This comprehensive full-day tour departs from Sofia and travels to the ancient city of Plovdiv, where you’ll have the chance to explore the Old Town, see Roman-era ruins and discover the city’s best-known ancient landmarks. After lunch (at your own expense) and some free time to explore, you’ll visit Bulgaria’s oldest brewery for an in-depth tour and tastings of six of the country’s finest craft beers. The tour includes round-trip transit from Sofia via air-conditioned vehicle, as well as admission fees to all scheduled sites. Get ready to experience the best of Bulgaria’s history and beer on this unforgettable tour.

5. The Essential Western Bulgaria in 4 Days

See the best of western Bulgaria in just four days with this small-group tour. Up to 15 participants can enjoy an intimate experience, with accommodation and transportation included. Highlights of the tour include visits to the UNESCO-listed Rila Monastery, Boyana Church, and the fortress in Veliko Tarnovo. You’ll stay in comfortable 2 and 3-star hotels with the option to upgrade, and breakfast is included every day. Please provide your hotel for pick up on the first day, and expect to start at 9:00 AM. Personal expenses and meals/drinks are not included in the tour.

Most Frequently Asked Tourist Questions About Sofia Answered

As the capital city of Bulgaria, Sofia has become an increasingly popular tourist destination in recent years. However, travelers who are unfamiliar with this Eastern European gem may have a few common questions before planning their trip. In this article, we will answer the most frequently asked questions about Sofia to help you get the most out of your visit.

1. Is Sofia a Safe Place to Visit?

Many tourists ponder over the issue of safety in Sofia, especially if they come from countries with high crime rates. However, Sofia is known for being comparatively safe for travelers. Like with any big city, visitors should still take necessary precautions like keeping an eye on valuable belongings. However, you should feel safe walking around most parts of the city, even at nighttime.

2. What Language is Spoken in Sofia?

The official language of Bulgaria is Bulgarian, and this is the most commonly spoken language in Sofia. However, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that many locals also speak some level of English or Russian. Most street signs, restaurant menus, and even public transport timetables are written in both the Cyrillic alphabet and Latin script. Additionally, some locals speak Turkish, Romani or Serbian.

3. What is the Best Time to Visit Sofia?

Sofia experiences four distinct seasons, each offering its own unique charm for visitors. However, the best time to visit Sofia is during the spring and autumn (April – May and mid-September – October). During these months, the weather is mild and pleasant to explore the city’s many outdoor sights. Alternatively, if you are a winter sports enthusiast, it’s worth visiting Sofia between December and March, when the city is covered in snow, and you can enjoy activities such as skiing, snowboarding, or sledding.

4. What are the Must-See Attractions in Sofia?

Sofia offers a wealth of attractions for visitors to explore. Some of the most popular must-see attractions in Sofia include:

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral

This iconic Orthodox cathedral is one of Sofia’s most famous landmarks. With its striking gold-plated domes and intricate murals, the cathedral is a must-visit for anyone traveling to Sofia.

Vitosha Mountain

Vitosha is a beautiful nature park located within easy reach of the city. It is a popular destination for hiking, skiing, and picnics in the summer months.

National Palace of Culture

Known locally as NDK, this imposing Brutalist-era building is the largest conference and exhibition center in Southeastern Europe. The complex is a popular meeting spot for locals and tourists alike.

Free Sofia Tour

For those who want to go deeper into the history and culture of Sofia, taking a free Sofia tour is a must. The walking tour visits many of the city’s famous landmarks and is led by local guides.

5. What is the Currency Used in Sofia?

The official currency used in Bulgaria is the Bulgarian Lev (BGN). ATMs are widespread throughout the city, and most establishments accept credit cards. However, it is always wise to exchange your currency to Bulgarian Leva for small expenses, especially in more traditional establishments like street food joints or small boutiques.

6. How Easy is it to Get Around Sofia?

Getting around Sofia is both cheap and straightforward. The city has a reliable public transport system consisting of buses, trolleybuses, trams and a metro line that operates in two directions. These services run frequently, and visitors can buy single-journey passes at the price of 1.60 BGN from metro stations or ticket counters in larger stations.

7. What is the Local Cuisine Like?

Bulgarian cuisine is a blend of influences from the Ottoman Empire and local traditions. The staple of Bulgarian cuisine is dishes made from locally-roasted meats, fresh vegetables, and cheese. Some of the must-try Bulgarian dishes include:


Banitsa is a traditional pastry filled with feta cheese, eggs, and served with yoghurt. It is a delicious breakfast option.

Shkembe chorba

The popular Bulgarian soup is made from tripe, garlic, and spices, and is a popular hangover cure. It can be served with fresh red pepper or vinegar


These are spicy grilled meat sticks made from beef, pork, or mixed. They often come with French fries, salad, and a delicious tomato dip.

How to Spend Your Time as a Tourist in Sofia: A Comprehensive Guide

If you’re planning a trip to Bulgaria, the city of Sofia should definitely be on your itinerary. Being the capital of Bulgaria, Sofia has a lot to offer, from its rich history, delicious food, incredible architecture, and lively nightlife. Here’s a comprehensive guide on how to spend your time as a tourist in Sofia.

1. Visit Alexander Nevsky Cathedral

The Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, one of the most iconic landmarks in Sofia, is a must-visit place for tourists. It’s an Orthodox cathedral that was built in the early 1900s to commemorate soldiers that died fighting for Bulgaria’s independence from the Ottoman Empire. Once you step in, you’ll be awestruck by the breathtaking gold-domed roof and beautiful interior. It’s free to enter, but visitors are required to dress appropriately and be respectful of the Orthodox religion.

2. Discover Bulgarian History at the National Museum of History

If you’re a history enthusiast, then the National Museum of History is the place for you. It’s located in Boyana, a suburb of Sofia, and holds some of the most important artifacts in Bulgaria’s history, including ancient gold treasures, rare pottery, and weapons. The museum has audio guides in English, so you won’t miss anything important.

3. Explore Vitosha Mountain

If you want to escape from the hustle and bustle of the city, take a trip to Vitosha Mountain. It’s only a short bus or taxi ride from the city center and offers beautiful views of Sofia from the top. Whether you want to hike, trek, or ski, Vitosha Mountain has something for everyone.

4. Sample Bulgarian Food

One of the best things about traveling is trying new and exciting foods. Bulgarian cuisine is known for its hearty and delicious dishes. Don’t miss out on trying banitsa, a pastry made with eggs, feta cheese, and filo dough, and kavarma, a stew made with meat and vegetables. If you’re a meat-lover, then try the traditional Bulgarian dish of grilled kebapche, meatballs made with beef, pork, and spices.

5. Visit the National Palace of Culture

The National Palace of Culture is a multi-functional building that hosts different cultural events, exhibitions, and concerts. It’s an impressive piece of architecture that looks magnificent at night. If you’re lucky, you’ll catch a show or exhibition during your stay.

6. Wander Through the City Center

The city center of Sofia offers a blend of old and modern architecture. Take a walk through the city center and visit the famous landmarks, such as the Sofia Synagogue, Banya Bashi Mosque, and the Saint Sofia church. Don’t forget to stop at the Alexander Battenberg’s Palace and Presidency to admire the beautiful architecture.

7. Experience Bulgarian Nightlife

Sofia has a vibrant nightlife scene with plenty of bars, clubs, and pubs. Whether you prefer live music or international DJs, there are plenty of places to dance the night away. Venture into the city’s neighborhoods for a more authentic experience and get to know the local crowd.

8. Shop at the Central Market Hall

If you’re in the mood for shopping, then head to the Central Market Hall. It’s a covered market that sells fresh produce, meats, cheeses, and bread. You can also find handmade souvenirs, ceramics, and jewelry. It’s a great place for foodies and souvenir hunters.

Final Thoughts

Sofia has something to offer for every type of traveler. From history enthusiasts to foodies to party animals, you’ll find plenty of things to do and see in Sofia. Use this guide to plan your itinerary and make the most of your visit. Remember to stay respectful of the local customs and traditions, dress appropriately, and have fun.

The 5 Best Things to Do in Sofia