Bulgaria is hitting an economic boom! The tech sector is growing and is the main focus of the country’s start-up activity, with the capital Sofia at the centre.
Sofia’s grey communist-era of the cityscape is slowly vanished and gives the place to shine to beautified golden Orthodox domes, leafy parks and the grandeur of the surrounding mountains. There are plenty of lively bars and restaurants too.
The cathedral of Sofia is called The St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral. It is the center of orthodox religion in Bulgaria, built in Neo-Byzantine style in 19 century. The cathedral was created in honour to the Russian soldiers who died during the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878, as a result of which Bulgaria was liberated from Ottoman rule.
Everything in Sofia is aligned with the cathedral as the center of citizen’s life. That’s the reason we find the several sites around it. I. e. bulgarian Parliament called The National Assembly of Neo-Renaissance style. The slogan on the facade above the entrance “Obedinenieto Pravi Silata”, loosely translated means ”United we are strong.”
On the left side of the main Cathedral is a flea market with lots of old goods from communist period. Definitely something to get lost in time. My brother – the old coins collector was stunned and spent entire Sunday morning there.
Then again to it’s right is a nice orthodox church that we never managed to find out the name of it. The reason is that my brother and I were in Sofia in 2010 when no tourist office existed yet. When we asked in the street a certain passenger for a tourist office, he asked: why? We said we need a map. Remember in 2010 there were no smartphones yet.
However, the church:
Every street corner had this window store in the level of a sidewalk with empty bottles and sacks as the exhibits of items to sell. (I am not saying anything here) o.O
Anyways, my brother Martin and I continued to visit the Archaeological Museum with the ancient heritage and the heritage from the time of Thrace especially the Thracian gold. I found the Lapidarium with ancient remnants of concrete columns very attractive and mystique as the fog was coming down on them.
There is a bar on every corner in the centre of Sofia and in certain residential areas, such as ‘Studentski Grad‘ (Students’ Town), where simply sitting for a coffee, dinning or having a great night out is just the way to spend the time in Sofia. 🙂 For some reason Martin and I choosed the Budha bar that had something a little different to offer – style, good music and that certain something … well, if you ever meet my brother – ask him… and had a great time!