Bulgaria’s mountains are an affordable and less crowded alternative to the Alps with cable cars, thermal springs and glacial lakes providing walkers with a wealth of options above and below the pines. Find out what Responsible Travel recommends, including the best time go, in our Bulgaria walking holidays guide.
BEST TIME TO VISIT BULGARIA
Long, hot, summer days send Bulgarians to Black Sea beaches. In August, especially, you’ll find the streets of Sofia and the parks of Plovdiv a lot less crowded.
In winter, Bulgaria's alpine areas are covered in snow although public transport still seems to run on time, ferrying folk to and from ski resorts close to Sofia and Plovdiv. Summers can get very hot, particularly at lower levels, making the Black Sea the place to be for local holidaymakers. Although autumn is marked with cooler temperatures, it's one of the best times to visit Bulgaria for country walks and city sightseeing. Spring can get a tad damp so waterproofs are advisable. However, glacial lakes, mountain streams and waterfalls are at the peak of their powers at this time.
WHEN TO VISIT BULGARIA & WHEN NOT TO
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If you'd like to chat about Bulgaria or need help finding a holiday to suit you we're very happy to help.
OUR PICK FROM THE BULGARIAN CALENDAR
International Bagpipe Festival, Gela village
During the first weekend of August, the village of Gela, deep within the Rhodope Mountains, comes alive to the strains of the pipes. Bagpipes – or as they’re called in Bulgaria, kaba gaida – have long been a part of traditional folk music here and clans gather from far and wide to listen, dance and sing along as part of an uplifting weekend away.
More about Bulgaria
Our Bulgaria travel guide lifts the lid on an intriguing nation that’s bordered by five countries and the Black Sea and features the tallest point within the whole of the Balkans, Mount Musala in Rila National Park.
If you're interested in travelling in Bulgaria then check out our map and highlights page before you go.
Bulgaria has long had a reputation as one of Europe's most affordable winter sport destinations, but this is also a country that boasts more thermal springs than the whole of Hungary.
Once famous for its dancing bears, Bulgaria is now a sanctuary for the gentle giants that like nothing better than to rummage the gothic forests and gorges of the Rhodope Mountains.
Explore Bulgaria's most expansive mountain range, the Rhodope Mountains, as part of a small group or on a tailor made self-guided tour and get ready for a wonderful world of waterfalls, thermal spas and gentle, forested mountain slopes.
Bulgaria boasts the highest peak in the Balkans as well as more thermal springs than Hungary, which is good news for walkers wishing to scale new heights before plunging into the depths of a warm bath for a jolly good soak.
Although Bulgaria may not immediately spring to mind when thinking about family holidays, you might be surprised at just how refreshingly simple things can be when travelling in Bulgaria with kids.
Find out what our friends in Bulgaria rave about.
Bulgaria has just as many positive and negative examples of tourism as anywhere else in Europe.
In the 1990s, a Bulgarian geologist established a network of ‘eco trails’ in Bulgaria to draw people away from the Black Sea Resorts and into the woods.