Trip to Bulgaria, Trip Planning and initial research on travel

bulgaria stone bridge

Hello traveling girls and guys! Its time to get down to brass tacks on my interest in visiting Bulgaria. I personally have never been but on the map its close to my current location in Tirana, so I’m going to do some research and see what I can find out. I start by first looking at the cost, but I discussed this in another blog post related to travel expenses here, so the next few things I look at are geography, crime, and transportation, then after that the fun stuff we can do while there.

Is it a safe place to visit? Too much violence esp. if anything is directed against tourists like over in Cancun this is a no go for me. Lets check Bulgaria. The homicide rate for Bulgaria on Wikipedia is listed at 1.9 and on Nationmaster, 2.3, whereas the US is at 5. This gives me some idea of the level of violence in a country. Next we take a look at total crimes per 1000, Bulgaria is at 18.93 whereas the USA is at 41.29. Research over, this is low enough for me….

See my note at the bottom related to crime against tourists…

Now on with the tour of Bulgaria, crime is good, next I took a look at local bus prices. I’m fine spending a few hours on a local bus without AC if gets me from A to B. Prices on these $15 to $33 as of June 2022. They just reinstated the international bus lines between Skopje, Macedonia and Sophia, Bulgaria. Check with or

Geography, population, GDP of Bulgaria – In terms of area Bulgaria 42,500 square miles so we can assume something like 235 miles wide by 180 miles tall, basically shaped like a rectangle. That’s about the same size as Tennessee. From what I’m told Bulgaria is greener than the surrounding countries so that means many forests, its somewhat mountainous like other countries in the Balkans. The population is 7.15 million, so about twice as large as Albania and roughly the same size as Serbia. Now the GDP of Bulgaria is $21,800 versus $12,500 for Albania and $15,100. In my experience GDP per capita is roughly related to cost of living.

The fun stuff, tourist attractions in BulgariaI like to mix it up, so i might choose some architectural sites, a city marketplace, museums, beach relaxation, mountain hikes, or historic ruins, exercise or some of each, here’s the list for Bulgaria, but subject to change …

  • #1. Boyana Church, Sofia,
  • #2. Alexander Neevsky Cathedral, Sophia,, green and gold plated dome, most famous in Bulgaria,
  • #3. Veliko Tarnovo, city with old architecture,
  • #4. Nesebar, ancient ruins, along the coast near Varna,
  • #5. Sunny Beach, north of Bergas, beach town/resort area,
  • #6. Krushuna Waterfalls, town of Krushuna, 183 km east of Sophia
  • #7. Plovdiv, Ancient ruins, amphitheater
  • #8. Ruse, small town along the Danube, 19th century architecture,
  • #9. The stone desert, near Varna
  • #10. Belogradchik, near mountains, castles.

Crime against tourists… Here’s one thing I’ve learned as a traveler, petty crime like pickpocketing or stealing low priced items is something that can go on wherever, whenever; check out my tips for onebag travel safety in another post here.