Best Places to Stay in Sofia, Bulgaria

Where to stay in Sofia? The best places to stay in Sofia are in the city center, and in this post we will analyze the Bulgarian capital and its districts

The best places to stay in Sofia are in the area close to the Vitosha Boulevard, the main shopping street in the city. This post explains this and other areas in Sofia, including a cost of travel analysis of Bulgaria.

where to stay in sofia
Vitosha Boulevad. Photo by Stella.

Tourism in Sofia: Overview

Sofia is the capital of Bulgaria and a very interesting city for its history, architecture and also eateries. Tourism is Bulgaria is growing exponentially since the country joined the European Union in 2007, and even if most tourists prefer the coast, Sofia is also becoming more attractive.

One of the reasons behind the growth of tourism in Sofia is the expansion of low cost carriers to the country. In 2016, the Sofia Airport experienced a growth of 21% in passenger traffic. The city itself is also improving its infrastructure to accommodate tourists better. The renovations in the Vitosha Boulevard gave a new atmosphere to the center of the city.

Where to Stay in Sofia

The best areas to stay in Sofia are in the city center, and the Lozenets district. In the city center, the area around the metro station Serdica offers great options.

City Center

The city center of Bulgaria is rather big, and there are many options you can consider for your stay in Bulgaria. The area around the Largo, one of the most iconic buildings in Bulgaria, is ideal for its convenience and attractions.

The Vitosha Boulevard (булевард Витоша), the most famous street in Sofia, also crosses the city center of the Bulgarian capital.

Vitosha Boulevard

The Vitosha boulevard is the main shopping street in Sofia and also the most beautiful one, right in the city center. This area is ideal for basically al activities, including shopping, restaurants and nightlife.

From the Serdika (Сердика) metro station to the Park National Palace of Culture you will have plenty of good hotels for all budgets. The area is also one of the best for walking tours and everything you need is reachable by foot.

Lozenets District

The Lozenets district can be a good option if you want to stay in a residential area of Sofia. Lozenets is one of the best districts in the capital, and there are some great options to stay near the European Union (Европейски съюз) Metro Station.

Budget Accommodation in Sofia – €

Budapest Hotel – an excellent choice close to the Sofia Central Station and also to the Lavov Most Metro Station (one stop to the Serdika station).

Best Western Lozenetz Hotel – a great option in the Lozenets district from one of the most well known hotel chains in the world.

City Avenue Business Hotel – an affordable hotel close to the Opalchenska metro station.

Reasonably Priced Accommodation in Sofia – €€

Central Hotel Sofia – located close to the Serdika and also the Opalchenska metro station, this hotel offers a great value for money in the Sofia city center.

Premier Thracia Hotel – a great hotel in one of the most privileged locations in the city center, just a few meters to the Vitosha boulevard.

Luxurious Hotels in Sofia – €€€

Sense Hotel Sofia – a luxurious hotel in the city center, close to the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral.

Arena Di Serdica Hotel – an elegant and refined hotel a short walk to the Largo and the Serdika metro station.

Cost of Travel in Sofia Bulgaria

If you are doing an Eurotrip or a weekend get away, you will notice how Sofia is pretty inexpensive. It is in fact the cheapest European Union capital for tourism, with affordable transport, accommodation and food.

find a job in bulgaria
Photo by Francisco Anzola.

Getting to Bulgaria can be quite cheap, if you are traveling within Europe with a low cost airline. You can also get to Bulgaria by train or bus, but the journeys are quite long in most cases. If you are coming from Macedonia, the bus or driving are the best options.

Sofia public transportation is pretty reliable and inexpensive, especially the metro. Ideally, you should consider accommodation options with easy access to the metro, mainly if outside the city center.

Accommodation is also pretty affordable in the capital, but there are options for all budgets. There are many accommodation options in the city, for a fraction of what a hotel room cost in Western Europe. The options are varied and numerous, from budget hostels to luxury hotels.

Best Time of the Year to Visit Sofia and Bulgaria

The capital of Bulgaria has a humid continental climate with rather defined four seasons. Considering its relatively high altitude for an European capital (550m) Sofia has a cooler climate than most parts of Bulgaria. This brings its advantages and disadvantages, depending when you visit the city and your personal taste.

Winter is great in Bulgaria if you are coming for skiing. The Vitosha ski resort is pretty close to the city and is also affordable. Bulgaria is one of the cheapest ski destinations in Europe.

Spring and the beginning of autumn are great for sightseeing, and prices are very inviting. For those coming in summer, the weather is usually warm yet pleasant, however, some weeks can be extremely hot.

Other Resources for Traveling in the Balkans

If you are traveling to the Balkans you might be interested in the best places to stay in Belgrade. For those coming to Sofia via Macedonia, you can also check where to stay in Skopje.

You can also check our guides to retire in Bulgaria and how to find a job in Bulgaria.