Surrounded by sprawling parkland, Sofia, thecapital and largest city of the Republic of Bulgaria, lies at the foot of popular ski mountain, Vitosha. With a history that stretches over seven millennia, ruin-rich Sofia is one of Europe’s oldest cities. The National Historical Museum is one of Eastern Europe’s most extensive. Wide, cobblestone boulevards, charming boutiques and truly electrifying nightlife star in this city of 1.3 million. Trolleys, trams and buses traverse the dynamic city.
The city is located at a strategic crossroads. The route from Western Europe to Istanbul passes through Sofia via Beograd and Skopje, then through Plovdiv to Turkey. Sofia also connects The Near East and The Middle East, lying between the banks of The Danube and the shores of The White Sea on the one hand, and between The Black Sea and The Adriatic on the other. Sofia has something for every taste. There are a great many luxury hotels, including those that are part of international hotel chains. There is also a wide variety of hostels and smaller family guesthouses. There are a multitude of discotheques, restaurants, bars, folk clubs, taverns, soda fountains, and many other kinds of entertainment. One of Sofia’s favourite spots for both visitors and residents is Vitosha Boulevard. Here thee are shops carrying world-famous brands, and since it’s a pedestrian zone, it a very pleasant place for strolling and relaxation. In general, the capital is a shoppers’ delight, since Sofia is still one of the major crossroads on the Balkan Peninsula for trade of all kinds
Sofia preserves many valuable monuments to its long and storied past. Visitors exploring the city’s streets can see remnants of The Eastern Gate from the days when Sofia was Serdika and Sredets, dating from the 2nd-4th centuries CE. These remains are exhibited in the underpass connecting the Presidential Palace and The Ministerial Council, surrounded by shops selling traditional Bulgarian souvenirs and rosewater.
Sofia’s parks are a favourite place for rest and recreation. Borisov Park is right in the centre of the city, and South Park is next to the National Palace of Culture. The Sofia Zoological Garden in the southern part of the city is the country’s largest zoo. It is a favourite place for a day’s outing for young and old alike.