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Sofia, which offers glorious views of Mount Vitosha to boot, has everything one might need for a fantastic few days in Europe...
Over recent years, modern elements have sprung up across this ancient capital city, situated in the west of Bulgaria. Shining shopping malls and top-class five-star hotels are ushering in a new era for Sofia, which continues to climb the tourism popularity charts. And while many holidaymakers have had Bulgaria on the radar for beach breaks and ski holidays for a while, Sofia has rightfully clawed its way on to the scene with museums, galleries, restaurants and a wealth of architectural treasures.
This evolution has prompted the arrival of a clutch of excellent new hotels in Sofia.
It’s easy to find great-value Sofia accommodation when you use the TravelSupermarket search tool. To make even bigger savings, book your hotel in Sofia as far in advance as possible.
TravelSupermarket compares prices so that you don’t pay over the odds for your Sofia hotel. So where will you stay?
Luxury hotels are plentiful, with imposing grand hotels competing for business with exclusive boutique hotels at the top end of the market. But Bulgaria is a good-value destination, and even in the capital budget hotels and mid-range accommodation are easy to come by, with many cheap Sofia hotels enjoying prime positions in the city centre.
That's good because the central part of Sofia, which is crammed with tourist attractions, is the most attractive area to stay in. Roughly bordered by a ring road, this is the area where you'll find most of the city's hotels, as well as lush tracts of parkland that ensure you'll never feel claustrophobic in Sofia.
The inner neighbourhoods of Oborishte, Vazrazhdane, and Krasno selo are also good options, while for internationally recognised brands, look out for Sheraton, Radisson Blu, Hilton, Best Western, Holiday Inn, Kempinski and Park Inn.
Most visitors make a beeline for these top attractions, though you’ll soon discover that Sofia has plenty more to offer...
Top five attractions
St Alexander Nevski Memorial Church
The imposing golden domes of this church dominate the Sofia skyline, making it a must-visit on any sightseeing itinerary.
Church of Saint Sofia
This remarkable church is a popular symbol of modern Bulgaria and very different to the plain buildings surrounding it.
National Art Gallery
More than 50,000 Bulgarian artefacts are housed in this enormous museum; you need almost a whole day to explore everything worth seeing.
Watch the impressive changing of the guard ceremony on the hour, every hour.
Vitosha National Park
The expansive area of resorts and parkland at the base of dome-like Mount Vitosha is perfect for a relaxing stroll.
Find out what’s on when with our pick of the best annual events in Sofia…
Sofia International Film Festival; March: This major movie event has grown massively in popularity over the years and now attracts more than 70,000 visitors annually. Hotel rooms are at a premium, so book well in advance.
International Folklore Festival; July: A mesmerising, council-run event that takes over many of the streets of central Sofia. There are shows, performances, food and drink – much of which is completely free.
International Jazz Festival; November: Dedicated to jazz in all its forms, this musical event attracts talent from across the globe.