In the center of Sofia stands a monument to Russian Tsar Alexander II in gratitude for the liberation of Bulgaria from the Ottoman Empire in the mid-19th century.

The Ottomans hanged revolutionary Vasil Levski in a square in Sofia, the most famous Bulgarian in the polls.

Bulgaria sided with Germany in both World Wars, resulting in Sofia being bombed by the Allies.

The mausoleum of the first communist leader was destroyed in 1999. There is also a decrepit communist spaceship.

One of 2 countries (the other being Latvia) in Europe with a current population smaller than in the mid-20th century.

In the 70's a song with traditional Bulgarian bagpipes was sent into space on the Voyager spacecraft.

Delicious food. Great bread with spices. The main salad "Shopska salad" is a copy of the Greek salad, but the feta is cut into shavings. The main salami sausage is lukanka. There is unique kitchen appliance to roast peppers – Чушкопек. Apparently Bulgarians also invented yoghurt. Rakia is a brandy made from grapes, plums, or peaches, about 40-60% alcohol.

Cyril and Methodius Day (Alphabet Day) is a public holiday. Unlike the Russian Cyrillic alphabet, the Bulgarian alphabet does not have the letters "э", "ё", "ы".

Cool contemporary Bulgarians:


Lots of bookstores ("книжарница") and theaters.

There are more cats than dogs.

There is a train from the airport to the city center, manufactured by the Russian Метровагонмаш in 2013.

People don't pester you to buy something or solicit you into restaurants like in Istanbul.



Plovdiv is longest continuously inhabited city in Europe.

It takes three hours to get from Sofia to Plovdiv on a shabby train.

We stayed at Boutique Hostel Old Plovdiv.