An Introduction to Bulgaria’s Capital City
Sofia is Bulgaria’s capital city and is home to 1.2 million people. Sofia was once a Thracian settlement over 2,000 years ago and was formerly Serdica, one of the most important cities in the Roman empire. Since, Sofia’s been passed between nations and empires — Byzantine, Magyar, Ottoman, Russian — until Bulgaria achieved full, complete independence in 1908.
The 20th century was not kind to Sofia, or Bulgaria for that matter. The Balkan Wars, World War I, a devastating terrorist attack by the Bulgarian Communist Party, World War II (in which the city of Sofia was heavily bombed), and a prolonged period of Communism challenged the growth of the newly independent nation of Bulgaria and its capital city.
But despite dark spots in Bulgaria’s past, Sofia has a bright outlook. Public transportation is extensive and efficient. Efforts are being made to preserve important markers of the city’s history and architecture. Countless new restaurants, bars, and cafés are opening regularly, breathing new life into an already dynamic city.
Sofia is full of gardens and green spaces which are host to picnics and late-night beers in summer and blanketed with snow in the winter. The city is nestled at the foot of the massive Vitosha Mountain, which at 2,290 meters is one of the largest mountains in close proximity to a European capital city. Vitosha is home to skiing and snowboarding in winter and astounding hikes in the summer.
No matter what your interests, there’s something in Sofia that will charm you, and we’re here to help you find it.