The Bulgarian shoreline framing the west coast of the Black Sea is changing into increasingly more well-liked with vacationers on the lookout for an off-the-beaten-path European seashore vacation spot.
Many come as a result of this space doesn’t see the crowds or excessive costs of different well-liked European seashores.
Although it sees hundreds of thousands of vacationers from each inside Bulgaria and overseas every summer season, the Bulgarian coast continues to be comparatively unknown to American vacationers.
One part of almost 80 miles of sandy beaches and resorts is known as the Bulgarian Riviera, and I used to be fortunate sufficient to spend 2 months having fun with this space in the summertime of 2022.
Here Are 7 Things That Surprised Me Most About My Time In The Bulgarian Riviera:
1. Bulgarian Hospitality
After being fortunate sufficient to spend a protracted time period touring all through many of the western Balkan states, I believed I used to be ready for Bulgaria.
Despite my earlier expertise with that well-known Balkan hospitality, I used to be nonetheless unprepared for the extent of friendliness that I obtained from Bulgarians. It appeared that it doesn’t matter what our interplay was or irrespective of their age or background, they have been all very good and welcoming.
I say this as an American who has traveled to many international locations and has not at all times been greeted with probably the most welcoming of attitudes.
Overall Bulgarians handled me with nothing however kindness and heat, particularly so once you confirmed the slightest indication of willingness to partake of their conventional meals and drinks!
2. The Beautiful Beaches
With the common summer season season beginning in late May and going till mid-October, the Bulgarian coast sees over 300 hours of sunshine in each July in addition to August. The water is ideal for swimming with a median temperature of round 79 levels Fahrenheit, with often calm and delicate waters close to the shoreline.
Sunny Beach is taken into account among the finest seashores, however remember it’s very commercialized and geared towards English vacationers. That being mentioned, the sand is tender and stretches without end, and their lifeguards watch the waters, so it does have its deserves. Saxa Beach in Burgas and Town Beach In Sozopol are additionally good choices should you don’t thoughts a crowd however need some good eating places and different facilities.
For these occasions you’re on the lookout for a wild and pure setting, head to Boloata Beach in Kaliakra Cape, which is a part of each a nature and archeological reserve. One of the few wild seashores left, Itakli Beach is a superbly peaceable place to take pleasure in some alone time, as long as you don’t thoughts the occasional nudity; it is a pure seashore, in spite of everything.
3. Where Is Everyone?
Most of Bulgaria’s vacationers come from Romania, Turkey, Germany, Russia, Greece, and Ukraine, a undeniable fact that’s not too stunning given these international locations’ proximity.
However, you will notice many British individuals right here on vacation as effectively, because of low-cost airways’ common and low cost flights connecting the UK to Varna and Burgas.
One factor that you just most likely gained’t see a lot of is Americans. In truth, I by no means met one other American in my two months right here, and most of the Bulgarians have been a bit shocked once they came upon I got here from the States.
When I returned again house after my time in Bulgaria, I spoke so extremely of it that I’m positive I should have satisfied another Americans to test it out for themselves.
4. The History
Bulgaria itself has a protracted and interesting historical past, and the Black Sea area is not any exception. Towns equivalent to Sozopol and Nessebar boast stunning outdated cities and historic structure, and cobblestone streets to discover.
The cities alongside the coast right here have been necessary as buying and selling ports, and a few date again to the Bronze Age. One enjoyable undeniable fact that I discovered whereas I used to be out wandering the streets of Nessebar (my private favourite city alongside the coast), is that this UNESCO World Heritage city is essential to the historical past of cash, because it’s one of many first locations on this planet to begin making cash.
Ironic as I discovered this whereas I used to be out spending manner an excessive amount of cash on the many stalls and handicraft retailers tucked away within the alleys.
5. Let’s Eat
Let’s simply say this proper off the bat, the Bulgarian meals scene on the Black Sea coast is likely to be one in every of my favorites that I’ve ever skilled. It’s the right mix of grilled meats, greens, and cheeses, with soups and stews, salads, and contemporary seafood including completely to the combo.
Rakia is the nation’s favourite drink right here, and when you have tried it, you already know that it may be hit and miss in some international locations. I’ve to say that Bulgarian Rakia is kind of good, much more so when combined as a Rakia bitter.
Some of my favourite meals recollections of this area are consuming plates of fried smelt whereas sitting within the sand with a chilly beer or having the standard Shopska salad of juicy Bulgarian tomatoes and cucumbers topped with white cheese. (simply keep in mind to protect your meals in opposition to the relentless seagulls!)
6. Cheap or Not Cheap, Up To You
I’ve to be sincere, once I determined to spend my summer season on the Bulgarian coast on the Black Sea, I had examine how low cost this vacation spot was over and over. Ok, it CAN be low cost, sure, and it’s for positive a fraction of the worth that an Italian or Greek seashore vacation spot is, but it surely’s additionally straightforward to splurge right here.
The city we have been primarily based in is named being one of many costlier areas, and people who are on the lookout for low cost and cheerful head over to Sunny Beach, the place you will get an English breakfast and a pint of beer for beneath $5.
Of course, how a lot you spend is completely as much as you, and whereas I did benefit from the frequent low cost and scrumptious road snacks, I used to be usually tempted by the superb waterfront or poolside eating places with their cocktail specials, cozy bean baggage, and world-class freshly caught seafood.
7. Have A Seat
Being from America, the thought of paying for seashore lounges continues to be a tad overseas to me. Now, I’ve gotten used to this idea after spending a summer season on the seashores of Albania, Montenegro, and Croatia, but it surely hit a bit in a different way in Bulgaria.
As our base was within the vacationer city of Sveti Vlas, the clientele is a little more upscale (except for us in fact), and the seashore is generally taken up by enormous fancy seashore golf equipment, providing every thing from easy loungers to luxurious seashore tents with beds and private concierge.
On the very uncommon event, I did splurge for a seat, it was mere seconds after I sat down that somebody came to visit trying to acquire. I saved cash by nearly at all times simply mendacity my towel in an empty little bit of sand and by no means having to fret about theft or my private house.
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This article initially appeared on TravelOffPath.com