Experience in Sofia, Bulgaria by Radina

Published by Asssi Bossi — 7 years ago

0 Tags: Erasmus experiences Sofia, Sofia, Bulgaria

What is it like to live in Sofia? Would you recommend it? What is the city like?

Sofia has it all. You can start by exploring the small streets in the center, where you can stumble upon recently uncovered ancient Roman buildings and roads, take a stroll along the bustling pedestrian street Vitosha, visit the books market on Slaveykov square, or just relax at one of the many cafes and restaurants.

Sofia has all the amenities you can expect from a European capital – large shopping malls, 24/7 supermarkets and kiosks, huge selection of restaurants, bars, and clubs.

The city is quite lively and most of the year it enjoys nice, sunny weather. It is the only European capital located at the foot of a mountain, which highest peak is 2290 m.

What is the student lifestyle like in Sofia?

There are tens of thousands of students in Sofia. Many of them come from all parts of Bulgaria, and there are foreigners as well. Student life is great, especially in a neighborhood not accidentally called Student City, where most of the student dorms are located.

How much does it cost to live in Sofia?

Here you get the best bang for your buck, period. There is no other place in Europe where you can match price and quality better. Accommodation, eating out, clubbing, taking a cab – all of these are affordable more than in any other European capital.

Is it difficult to find accommodation in Sofia? Is there any advice you can give?

It’s not difficult at all. There has been plenty of development in recent years, so you can easily find a place in a brand new building with brand new furniture.

Check out Airbnb, there are plenty of listings in Sofia. In general, avoid hostels. You can get a normal hotel room with private bathroom for around 15 euros.

What is the food like? What are your favourite dishes?

Try the typical Shopska and Shepherd salads, both of them with plenty of fresh vegetables and cheese (which taste great). Most restaurants offer a variety of chicken, fish and pork dishes.

Also, try the typical shkembe soup! You don’t need to know what’s inside, just try it. It’s quite common for the locals to consume it after a night out drinking. You will feel great the next day!

What places would you recommend visiting in Sofia?

Explore the central area on foot – there are many small streets filled with nice places to eat and shop. Take a walk around the South Park and Borisova Gradina – both of them are huge and located in the central part of the city. Visit some of the shopping malls (most of them have entertainment areas, not just shops). Go to Vitosha mountain for a day.

Is it good to eat out in Sofia? Can you tell us your favourite spots?

Absolutely. Prices do not vary much, so sit anywhere you like, you will not be disappointed. For university students, popular spots include Ugo, Divaka, Krivoto and Happy – all of them are chains and can be found around the city.

Avoid fast food chains. The money you will spend in most of them will be enough to have a great meal in a nice restaurant with service!

Is the nightlife good in Sofia? Where is good to go?

When the night comes, you can dive into a nightlife like no other – while you can find all the typical European clubs and bars playing anything from house, hip-hop to jazz and rock, you must experience a night out in clubs that play local music, the so called popular folk. A cultural shock at first, it might well turn out to be your funniest night ever! Also, dancing to this type of music, while challenging for Westerners, is fun by itself.

What advice would you give future students headed to Sofia?

Socialize with the locals. We do not get as many visitors and tourists from abroad as other European capitals and most Bulgarians will be quite happy to walk you around and help you with whatever they can! Also, most of us speak English, and many speak German, French, Spanish and other languages.

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