Sofia is the capital of Bulgaria and the largest city in the country. It is located in Sofia Valley and surrounded by the slopes of Vitosha mountains. The region where the capital is located has been inhabited since 7000 BC. Nowadays Sofia turns to a cosmopolitan city. It is home to many cultural and commercial activities. Sofia is famous for its start-up ecosystem, as in 2013 was even nominated as one of the world’s top 10 best places for start-up businesses in information technology.
Bulgarian is the official language in the country. It is written with the Cyrillic alphabet, which is the basis of alphabets used in various languages, especially those of Orthodox Slavic origin, and non-Slavic languages influenced by Russian. The Cyrillic alphabet is based on the Early Cyrillic alphabet developed during the 9th century AD in the First Bulgarian Empire. As of 2011, around 250 million people in Eurasia use it as the official alphabet for their national languages. Cyrillic became the third official script of the European Union, following Latin and Greek, with the accession of Bulgaria to the European Union on 1 January 2007,
English is the most common second language in the big cities, such as Sofia, Plovdiv, Veliko Turnovo, Varna, Burgas etc where a wide range of facilities are available for English-speaking visitors. Some people may also speak German or French. In the villages you'll hardly find any people speaking English. However our team will assist you while traveling around the country.
The Bulgarian Lev is the currency of Bulgaria, as its code is BGN, and the currency symbol is лв. Payments are always done in Leva. Hotels, restaurants, taxi drivers and shops accept payments in Bulgarian Leva only. It is easy to make a calculation, because the local currency is pegged to the EURO at a fixed rate 1 EUR = 1,95 BGN. Some prices are often published in Euro, but this is to facilitate the experience of all visiting foreigners.
You can use your credit or debit card in Bulgaria with no problems. Mastercard, Maestro, Visa, Diners club are widely accepted. American Express may not be accepted everywhere even if there is a sign saying that the shop accepts it. However we recommend to have some cash as well.
Bulgaria’s climate is a combination of continental and Mediterranean influences. The country has four quite well-defined seasons (spring, summer, autumn and winter) and temperatures vary dramatically in different times of the year. In general, you can expect summers to be quite hot and dry and winters to be snowy and cold, with spring and autumn providing a transition between the two. The warmest parts of Bulgaria are in the southwest, where the Mediterranean climate effects in the valleys are particularly strong. The seaside has a mild subtropical climate heavily influenced by the Black Sea’s presence. The plains and lowlands in the north and south experience continental weather (with the south usually a bit warmer) and the mountains are known for their Alpine climate conditions.
Bulgarian spring rolls around March and ends in early June. The minimal temperature vary from 1°C to 10°C, as the maximum temperatures are from 15°C to 25°C. As a rule, during the summer period which takes place from June to early September, the weather is wonderful, and the sea temperature may reach 26°C. The hottest months are July and August, as the sun is usually very strong especially at midday. Temperatures can sometimes exceed 35°C and approach even 40 °C. By mid-September the summer tends to end and the temperatures start steadily decreasing. The autumn in Bulgaria is a great chance to extend the summer. September and October are still quite sunny, warm and pleasant, however in October it usually gets colder and the temperatures are around 10-25°C. Winter approaches by the end of November and early December, when temperatures begin to drop below zero. From December to mid-March abundant snowfalls may occur throughout the country, as the temperature vary between -5°C to -15°C. Although the cold weather, the days remain clear and sunny.