Top things to do for FREE in Sofia
1. Get to know the city with the Free Sofia Tour
This is a really fantastic way to get to know the city quickly and make some friends at the same time! The Free Sofia Tour operate daily walking tours of the city at 11am and 6pm showing you all of the sights as well as giving you some inside information and tips to ensure you have the best stay in Sofia!
2. Spend an afternoon in South Park
There are some lovely parks in Sofia and South Park is one of my favourites. It’s a beautiful big park with so much space to enjoy, even when it’s busy. Aside from the luscious lawns, you’ll find a lake, a mini funfair for children and lots of street performers. You can take a slow stroll, play some sports, or simply soak up the sun with an ice cream.
3. Train at an outdoor gym
Gym membership isn’t too expensive in Bulgaria however when the weather is so good, why not take your workout outside. You’ll find some really cool outdoor gyms in Sofia, one of my favourites is located at Park Hipodruma, next to the wedding registry building (or Ritual Hall as it would be described here). It has great bars for pull ups etc and some equipment for abs and legs. There’s also a nice park so you can combine your strength training routine with a jog around the area. You can watch a cool video of a street workout competition held here this year!
4. Climb Mount Vitosha
You can’t really come to Sofia and not explore Mount Vitosha, it would be a real shame. This beautiful mountain is the backdrop of almost every place you’ll go to in Sofia. You can either go for a gentle stroll around the foot of the mountain, or, if you’re feeling a bit more adventurous, you can hike to the Black Peak (or Cherni Vrah in Bulgarian), which is the highest point at 2290m. You can drive, take a bus or even a chair lift most of the way, but if you want to have a completely free day out you can hike from the bottom following the marked routes. Just remember to take plenty of water, some snacks for the journey and some warm clothes for when you reach the top. There are some nice restaurants located in the mountain too if you want to stop half way for lunch, a favourite of mine is Hija Planinec, you’ll get some great, cheap home cooked Bulgarian food here. Depending on what time of year you go you may also find some lovely blueberries along the way.
5. Read a book in Doctors Garden
The Doctors Garden (or Doctorska Gradina in Bulgarian) is a pretty garden situated in the heart of the city centre, close to the National Library and Sofia University. Take a book and a blanket and spend an hour or two reading in the late afternoon sun.