Situated firmly in the middle of Romania, Serbia, Macedonia, Greece and Turkey, holidays in Bulgaria are becoming increasingly popular for explorers and holiday-makers alike. Being a neighbour to some of these other high profile destinations, it is fast becoming a must-see stop along the South-Eastern backpacker trail of Europe. On the whole, the country enjoys a temperate climate, with hot summers and cold winters although the weather will depend on where you are; the Balkan mountains will be chillier regardless of season, whereas the Black Sea coast hosts a gentler temperature whatever the weather.
Amongst other things, the Bulgarian cuisine scene is a particular treat, and visitors to all over the region will get to sample the many local culinary delights. A variety of traditional dishes will feature heavily in pork, fish and chicken, although you will also find veal and lamb recurring frequently in restaurant dishes. Beef, however, is not so prominently featured, although you will encounter an abundance of dairy products squeezed into every course, particularly different variations of yoghurt’s and cheese. Be sure to keep an eye out for “sirene,” which is a Bulgarian white brine cheese, commonly found in salads and pastries. Bulgaria is also home to its own nationally fermented wines and spirits; look out for Rakia, Mastika and Menta.
Although you will find a number of internationally influenced restaurants, if it’s a true taste of the local palate you’re after, you will be spoilt for choice. Some popular Bulgarian restaurants to start at are La Skara in Bansko, Chardaka in Bansko, The Black Cat in Borovets and Chevermeto, which all serve up a vast selection of authentic dishes.
Of course, eating isn’t all there is to in Bulgaria. With its awe-inspiring landscape and picturesque views, venturing out into the great unknown will leave you with endless possibilities for adventure. Why not try your hand at rock climbing in Veliko Tarnovo? Or a quad biking safari in Bourgas? Or you can even embrace your inner goat herder and part-take in a guided goat hike through the mountains of Radomir. Don’t forget your walking stick!