Bulgaria’s Sofia: From Roman Ruins & Soviet Architecture to Turkish Baths & Food

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Bulgaria is a country that is both ancient and modern.  You will find Roman ruins and Soviet style buildings and architecture everywhere.  This post is going to describe the dynamic city of Sofia, Bulgaria.  Sofia is the capital city of Bulgaria.  Located in the western portion of Bulgaria, it is the most populated city in the country.  You will find ruins and monuments all over Bulgaria.  The photo to the right is of the Turkish Baths.  This isn’t the only Turkish bath in Sofia, but this is the largest Turkish bath and it is behind the largest mosque in Sofia.  Bulgaria was occupied for over 500 years by the Ottoman empire and there is a large presence of Turkish culture in the food and ancient architecture in Bulgaria.  As you continue down the center of Sofia you will find many sights and sounds that are familiar and also very distant.

I have been living in a small town in Eastern Bulgaria for the last year and Sofia can be overwhelming at times for this reason.  As an American I can take comfort in knowing that I will have a little piece of America when I am in Sofia.  This is why I must visit the McDonalds or theStarbucks when I am here.  There are a total of 5 McDonalds in Bulgaria, and 3 of them are in Sofia.  Travel on buses and trams can be confusing for many, and even more confusing if you can’t read the Bulgarian alphabet.  I like walking when I am in Sofia and only take the trams when I absolutely have to.

Hostels are really nice in Sofia, between 15 and 20 leva a night, that is between 7 and 10 euro.  When in Sofia you must visit the national cathedral called the Alexader Nevski Church.  This church is in the center of Sofia, you can see the gold roof gleaming for miles on sunny days.  The church is open to the public to visit on non national holidays and has limited hours on Sundays.

The inside of this church has some of the most beautiful religious artwork I have ever seen.  And this building dominated the center of Sofia.  The other thing you must do is go to the presidential palace/house andwatch the changing, or rotating of the guards.  Every half hour the guards either rotate from one post to the other or change from one group of me to another.  Sofia is so dynamic that you will find something for you to do, from shopping to cultural to museums.  While Sofia doesn’t represent Bulgaria as a whole, not to any stretch of the imagination, Sofia represents Bulgaria moving into the 20th century while trying to hold on to its culture and tradition.

Guest Blog Post by Jacqueline Scott

Renee Blodgett
Founder
Renee Blodgett is the founder of We Blog the World. The site combines the magic of an online culture and travel magazine with a global blog network and has contributors from every continent in the world. Having lived in 10 countries and explored nearly 80, she is an avid traveler, and a lover, observer and participant in cultural diversity.

She is also the CEO and founder of Magic Sauce Media, a new media services consultancy focused on viral marketing, social media, branding, events and PR. For over 20 years, she has helped companies from 12 countries get traction in the market. Known for her global and organic approach to product and corporate launches, Renee practices what she pitches and as an active user of social media, she helps clients navigate digital waters from around the world. Renee has been blogging for over 16 years and regularly writes on her personal blog Down the Avenue, Huffington Post, BlogHer, We Blog the World and other sites. She was ranked #12 Social Media Influencer by Forbes Magazine and is listed as a new media influencer and game changer on various sites and books on the new media revolution. In 2013, she was listed as the 6th most influential woman in social media by Forbes Magazine on a Top 20 List.

Her passion for art, storytelling and photography led to the launch of Magic Sauce Photography, which is a visual extension of her writing, the result of which has led to producing six photo books: Galapagos Islands, London, South Africa, Rome, Urbanization and Ecuador.

Renee is also the co-founder of Traveling Geeks, an initiative that brings entrepreneurs, thought leaders, bloggers, creators, curators and influencers to other countries to share and learn from peers, governments, corporations, and the general public in order to educate, share, evaluate, and promote innovative technologies.
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