Plovdiv is famous for its picturesque Old Town, its delicious restaurant scene, and its beautiful Roman ruins. But unlike some museum cities, Plovdiv doesn’t shut down after dark! In fact, Plovdiv nightlife is vibrant and easily accessible. Here are our picks for the best things to do in Plovdiv at night to make your trip even more enjoyable!
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Where to Stay in Plovdiv
If you’re still not sure where to stay in Plovdiv, don’t worry – we’ve done the legwork for you! Here are our top picks for each budget category in Plovdiv.
Budget: When I stay at a hostel, there are a few things that I look for: privacy curtains, personal reading lights, and outlet space for each bed. Bonus points if the hotel lobby is modern and inviting – and if the kitchen is well-stocked and beautiful to cook in to boot, you might as well move in. Pijama Hostel has all of this and then some. Perks include board games, coffee and tea makers, and a central Kapana district location!
Mid-range: This is the hotel I chose for my most recent trip to Plovdiv, and I am obsessed with it! The Stay Hotel Plovdiv feels like a luxury hotel but at budget prices, and it’s located at what might be the single best spot in the city. The staff is friendly, the views are great, and the beds are comfortable. I’m seriously in love. My favorite part was that our room had a sleek couch that was a great place to relax after a long day of sightseeing and a long night out.
Luxury: The first five-star hotel in Plovdiv, if you’re seeking a spot of luxury in Europe’s 2019 Capital of Culture, you should check out the Residence City Garden. The rooms are refined and stylish – we’re talking spacious rooms and high ceilings (some rooms with chandeliers!), antique-style furnishings, and impeccable attention to detail. The bathrooms are beautiful and extremely modern, with lovely bathtubs that you can soak in to rest your feet after a long day of exploring Plovdiv.
The Best Things to Do in Plovdiv at Night
For such a small city, there are a surprising number of options for what to do in Plovdiv at night. Here are our favorites!
Go on a Pub Crawl
I’ve been a huge fan of the Sofia pub crawl for years, but the Plovdiv Cultural Pub Crawl just started. I was excited to see how it would compare to the one in Sofia. I’m happy to report that it was awesome.
If you’ve never gone on an organized pub crawl on your travels, the concept might be unfamiliar. Basically, a local guide shows you four or five of the most interesting bars in the city, teaches you about local alcohol and drinking customs, and shows you how to have a good time in the city.
During the tour, you meet other travelers, so by the end of the night, you’ve made some new friends, learned a ton, and get to skip that awkward feeling of trying to figure out where to go in a new city at night. I
I have been on quite a few, but it was the first time my fiance went on one. He had a blast (especially playing Foozball).
>>Book the Plovdiv Cultural Pub Crawl online or check tour reviews.<<
Watch the Sunset from Plovdiv’s Hills
The city of Plovdiv is famous for having seven hills, which means there are seven different spots from which to watch a glorious Plovdiv sunset. You can walk up to the Alyosha Monument, see it from the ancient fortress, or even walk up Youth Hill. For a great overview of Plovdiv’s hills, check out this website which covers them in detail.
See a Show at the (Ancient Roman) Theater
What could be a more unique way to enjoy your night in Plovdiv than by seeing a show at the world’s largest preserved Roman theater? While most who come here visit during the day to explore the ruins, there are performances held frequently here.
To see if there’s a show that will match your travel dates, check out this calendar. Sometimes there are even free performances, so make sure to get tickets early!
Of course, the Roman amphitheater isn’t the only venue in town. You can also see if there’s a performance at the State Opera or one of Plovdiv’s other theaters by checking here.
Sip Craft Beer in the Kapana
The Kapana is a great place to be at any time, and that includes night. Formerly the home to the artisans and craftworks of the city, the modern era left the neighborhood in neglect.
However, this has changed and the neighborhood has seen a more recent renaissance with the opening of craft beer bars, artisanal leather shops, and hip cafes.
Our favorite places to sip a beer and enjoy the night air are at Kotka & Mishka (Cat & Mouse in English) and Bar Craft.
Watch the Singing Fountains
Tsar Simeon Gardens are a great place to explore during the day, but they’re just as beautiful as night! That’s because the Singing Fountains put on a beautiful water light show,
The gardens have been newly restored to their late nineteenth-century glory, including the reconstruction of the original Viennese pavillion.
There’s even a performance held every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 9 pm called “The Fountain’s Special Dance.” This is an especially great activity for anyone who wants something to do in Plovdiv at night with kids.
Hit the Clubs
If you want to go dancing, there are a few different clubs to pick from. We stopped by No Sense, which had a metal-ish vibe. However, there are tons of clubs in this area to pick from, so you can either go bar hopping and then go to a club, or you can choose to go to a few clubs in a row.
Stroll Knyaz Alexander I
This boulevard is the main pedestrian street downtown, lined with beautiful buildings and shops. At night, you’ll find people walking up and down it, along with street performers and people headed to some of the bars on the street like Temple Bar.
If you’re longing to get a picture in front of the Together Monument with the statue of Milyo, this is a great time of day to come. While there might be a few people around, the crowds are much smaller than during the day!
This is also the starting place for the Plovdiv Cultural Pub Crawl, so come a few minutes early to grab some pictures if you want to do both.
Have a Drink on Stefan Stombolov Square
The area around Stefan Stobolov Square is full almost all the time (especially when the weather is nice). However, you can enjoy a nice drink or a gelato here after dark when it’s a (tad) quieter.
Some of my favorite buildings in the city are on the square, but really you come here for the Gelatto. If you come to Bulgaria and don’t go to a Raffy, did you really come to Bulgaria at all?
Find the Night’s Hot Karaoke Joint
This one is a bit tricky since it changes from night to night. However, if you love karaoke, you’re never too far from a microphone in Plovdiv. Check with your accommodations or ask around at the different bars to find out which Plovdiv bar will be the home for karaoke that night.
Drink Bulgarian Wine at Plovdiv’s Best Wine Bars
We love Bulgarian wine, and the region outside of Plovdiv is one of the best wine regions in Bulgaria!
If you’re looking to do some serious wine tourism, you’re going to have to start drinking during the day. However, if you’d like to just get a taste, then head to one of the city’s best wine bars, Vino Culture, or you can book a tasting at Enoteca Regional Wine.
Note: Planning a wine trip to Plovdiv? You’ll need to use at least an entire day. We recommend this wine tour that visits three wineries and includes a traditional Bulgarian lunch and transportation.
Enjoy Fabrica’s Beer Garden
Another craft beer bar, Fabrica is a bit outside of the center (but a very easy walk). The highlight here (beyond the delicious craft beer) is the beer garden. Cozy and intimate, it’s a great place if you want to be able to chat with your friends or if you’re traveling with your significant other.
Make a Reservation at Japonica
If you want to eat something phenomenal, but you’re dying to get away from the other tourists, make a reservation for the garden at Japonica. Plovdiv’s newest (and only) Japanese restaurant, it’s full of locals every night.
While it’s away from the tourist centers of the city, getting here is an easy five leva cab ride (less than $3 USD), and you’ll be blissfully away from crowds. However, the staff here speak great English and can help you with anything you need.
I absolutely adored my gyoza and spider roll. If you want to eat something delicious, be surrounded by locals, and you need a break from Balkan cuisine, I highly recommend this place.
Scarf Down Some Late Night Eats
If you’re out late and need a quick bite to eat, there are a few places around that serve Doner kebab or Egyptian food. The key here is to have cash, as these quick places don’t tend to take a credit card. Also, hit the first one you see, since many of the spots that look like they might be open late actually close fairly early.
If you get stuck for a late night snack, there are a few non-stop markets around, or you can ask your accommodations what’s open late nearby.
Plovdiv Nightlife Tours
More Plovdiv Travel Resources
Headed to Plovdiv? If this will be your first time in the country, then start with our guide to planning a trip to Bulgaria.
If you’ll also be visiting Sofia on your trip, we have guides on how to get from Sofia to Plovdiv and from Plovdiv to Sofia, plus recommendations for what to do in Sofia and the best Sofia nightlife and our favorite restaurants and bars.
You will also want to check out our overview of Balkan currency, which describes Bulgarian leva and how to tip in Bulgaria.
Don’t Forget About Travel Insurance
It’s always a good idea to travel to Bulgaria with a valid travel insurance policy. Travel here includes outdoor activities and travel to highly touristed sites. It’s great to be covered in case you have an accident or fall victim to theft. Travel insurance can help you recover your expenses and continue to enjoy your trip.
For travel insurance, I use World Nomads. I’ve been a happy customer of theirs for almost three years, and I’ve never had an issue when making a claim. I’m happy to refer them to anyone I meet.
Pin This Plovdiv Nightlife Guide for Your Trip to Bulgaria
Stephanie has been living in and traveling around the Balkans for the past three years. She’s written for National Geographic Online, appeared on CNN Arabic and in the New York Times, and ridden more Balkan buses than is good for a person.