This is how we locals survive during winter time! We want to pass this insight onto you, our lovely visitors. Keep in mind thought that you might just fall in love with Sofia and decide to make it your new home 😉
Depending on what region of the world you hail from, the moment you poke your face out from your cozy hotel/hostel/airbnb room, it might feel like a warm spring kiss, or a bone chilling North Pole slap in the face! Either way, we’ve got you covered, and will give you our top five picks to make your winter visit to our lovely city as enjoyable as possible!
It’s all about the powder a.k.a the snow! That’s right you saw it as you were landing – our beautiful Vitosha mountain! And yes we are totally going to brag that once work is over during the winter season we can drive up the mountain and do some night skiing. You are an early riser? You can get on those slopes as early as 8:30am. Due to the changing weather conditions, it is wise to check what time the lifts are open.
We have a less extreme outdoor activity. It’s the outdoor ice-skating rink at Ariana lake. It is open late into the night. It is situated at the entrance to the Borisova Garden park. Near the intersection of boulevards Evlogi i Hristo Georgievi and Tsarigradsko Shose. Once you have discovered the massive white tent, you will be ready to rent your skates. Make sure to hold onto that receipt! Sometimes there are discounts given at the nearby restaurant. Only because you were brave enough to get on that ice 😉 Don’t worry! You don’t need to be an ice-skating champion to put on those skates. If it is your first time, and you are not the most coordinated person, you might spend the majority of your time inspecting the ice on the ground, i.e. get ready to fall a lot, but trust us you will have tons of fun.
Perhaps you made some new friends last night at your hostel, but the outside temperatures are a bit snippy and you are not too keen on exploring the city. Don’t fear! There is a solution! You will be able to do something with your new bffs. How about some board games in a cool renovated old house that has a bar! Stop by Abordage or Karkason and you will see what we are talking about. That’s right board games, drinks, and a great company! That’s one way to escape a harsh winter day in Sofia!
You should definitely visit the Sofia Opera and Ballet and take advantage of the incredibly low prices. Yes, as low as 12 levs or around 6 euros, and increasing in gradation up to 50 levs or 25 euros, for the best seats. You can even book your tickets online, by first creating a profile. We advise you to do that so you can avoid the potential language barrier at the ticket box while personally selecting your seats from the comfort of your home.
Look no farther than The View! It is one of the best restaurants, if you want to enjoy your lunch (the reasonably priced lunch menu is uploaded everyday on their fb page and it lasts from 12pm-3pm) overlooking the entire city.
We hope you find these suggestions helpful. However, if you do enjoy walking in the cold wintery mornings or nights, we have a bonus suggestion for you. It’s the Free Sofia Tour! The very friendly, young, and energetic tour guides will graciously take you for a leisurely two hour sightseeing walk. Feel free to join us every single day of the year in front of the Palace of Justice (November – March: 11am, 2pm & 6pm; April – October: 10am, 11am, and 6pm). See you soon!
Author: Free Sofia Tour Guide – Nina Nikolova