7 days in Sofia Region, Plovdiv Province & Bansko Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Bulgaria trip planner
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Sofia — 1 night

Kick off your visit on the 28th (Wed): make a trip to Saint Sofia Monument, then examine the collection at Museum of illusions Sofia, then admire the landmark architecture of Catedral de Sveta-Nedelya, and finally explore the world behind art at The Red Flat. On your second day here, get in on the family fun at Kokolandia Adventure Park, then look and learn at Muzeiko, and then take an in-depth tour of National Institute of Archaeology with Museum.

To see maps, other places to visit, photos, and tourist information, you can read our Sofia route planner.

If you are flying in from Malta, the closest major aiport is Sofia Airport. In December in Sofia, expect temperatures between 7°C during the day and -3°C at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 29th (Thu) so you can go by car to Plovdiv.
Museums · Childrens Museums · Historic Sites · Theme Parks
Find places to stay Dec 28 — 29:

Plovdiv — 3 nights

City of the Seven Hills

Step off the beaten path and head to "St. st. Konstantin and Elena" Church and National Astronomical Observatory at Rozhen. Family-friendly places like Old Plovdiv Retro Photo and Hisar Kapia will thrill your kids. Change things up with these side-trips from Plovdiv: Chepelare Ski Center (in Chepelare) and Spree Ski & Snowboard School (in Pamporovo). And it doesn't end there: view the masterpieces at Andromeda Art, don't miss a visit to artnewscafe, admire the landmark architecture of Bakalova House, and examine the collection at Art Gallery Philippopolis.

For where to stay, traveler tips, photos, and other tourist information, refer to the Plovdiv online vacation planner.

Getting from Sofia to Plovdiv by car takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: take a shuttle; or take a bus. In December, daytime highs in Plovdiv are 10°C, while nighttime lows are -1°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 1st (Sun) to allow enough time to drive to Bansko.
Museums · Outdoors · Winter Sports · Historic Sites
Side Trips
Find places to stay Dec 29 — Jan 1:

Bansko — 2 nights

Kick off your visit on the 2nd (Mon): contemplate the long history of Neofit Rilski Museum, then hit the slopes at Ski Park Kartala, then admire the striking features of Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Church, and finally get to know the fascinating history of Varosha Ethnographic Complex. On the next day, take in the architecture and atmosphere at St Teodor Tiron and Teodor Stratilat Church, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Holy Trinity Church, make a trip to Velyanova House, then look for gifts at Bulgarian Factory Store, and finally relax and rejuvenate at Erma Spa & Hammam.

To see where to stay, traveler tips, maps, and more tourist information, go to the Bansko trip planner.

Drive from Plovdiv to Bansko in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Traveling from Plovdiv in January, things will get slightly colder in Bansko: highs are around 3°C and lows about -7°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Tue) so you can go by car back home.
Historic Sites · Parks · Outdoors · Winter Sports
Side Trips
Find places to stay Jan 1 — 3:

Sofia Region travel guide

Architectural Buildings · Room Escape Games · Nightlife
Boasting nearly 300 protected natural areas, the Sofia Region draws a growing number of hikers, walkers, cyclists, and birdwatchers. The regional and national capital Sofia, a city known for its architecture and laid-back atmosphere, serves as the gateway to the region's popular resorts and pristine natural parks. Beyond the lively capital spreads Bulgaria's timeless countryside, a land of verdant hills, rugged mountains, and quaint villages making up in traditional hospitality what they lack in modern tourist amenities. Join the locals for a chat and a glass of local brandy called "rakia," or soak up some local culture by learning the age-old methods for producing the region's aromatic fruit jams and tangy brine cheeses.

Plovdiv Province travel guide

Landmarks · Ruins · Specialty Museums
The heart of Bulgaria, Plovdiv Province stretches along the foothills of the Balkan mountain range, its fertile plains continuously inhabited for nearly 5,000 years. Rich in World Heritage-listed archaeological sites, the region contains the so-called "Valley of the Kings," an area dotted with over 1,500 ancient burial mounds. The biggest attraction remains the city of Plovdiv, one of Europe's oldest urban settlements. Steeped in history, the walkable city feature a pleasant Old Town packed with bohemian cafes, modern galleries, and many reminders of the region's Thracian, Roman, and Byzantine past. Base yourself in the city and spend your vacation exploring the nearby villages and monasteries, which preserve the country's age-old traditions and culture.