Wednesday, 9 September 2009

Bulgaria's Black Sea Coast

Thursday 27 August: Arrive at Varna's eager to please Yo-Ho Hostel, beach busy with local townsfolk but good Archaeological Museum and Art Gallery featuring, once again, the work of Vladimir Dimitrov. His portrait of a Peasant Girl particularly impressive. Shaded cliff-top Primorski Park stretches a couple of miles east to the dolphinarium. Intriguingly named Sold Bride House of Wine restaurant a good fınd, near the hostel, but not in any guide books.
Sunday 30: Down the coast to Nessebar, rich in ruined churches but nearby "Sunny Beach" jam-packed towel-to-towel with package tourists. Stayed en-suite in Hotel Tony in the UNESCO listed old town above on the peninsula.
Tuesday 1 September: en-suite room in private wooden house in the old fortified peninsula town of Sozopol then on to Burges to await the Friday night midnight coach to Istanbul. Small Archaeological Museum, quiet beach with long Soviet style pier and monument to match but with good atmosphere and restaurants. Refreshing and delicious meal of Tarator (chilled cucumber and yogurt soup garnished with chopped walnuts and dill) with freshly-baked bread, olives and garlic butter followed by pear, blue cheese and walnut salad then chocolate topped cheesecake and white (clear) local grape brandy at Monte Cristo's, despite what the guidebooks say, the best restaurant in town.
Photos of Varna, Nessebar, Sozopol and Burges.
Bulgaria summary:
Water: Delicious and free mineral water from public drinking fountains and spouts.

Drinks: Wine - very drinkable whites and reds particularly Melnik and Mavud. Beer - Stara Zagora's brewery produces a decent bottled dark beer but their Zagorka lager is uninspiring. See Sofia entry for Bulgaria's best ales. Tea - wide selection of delicious fruit and herb teas.
Toilets: Upright, clean and free at places to visit (M=Male, a spider-like Cyrillic symbol=female, most also have a graphic) otherwise a small fee (about 0.5 lv) is payable.
Leva (currently £1 = 2.4 lv).
Language: Dobber Den is hi/hello/good day, molyuh is please, merci is thanks, Chao is bye, da is yes, ne is no and Nazdrave! is Cheers!.
TICs: Helpful if you ask with free local town maps and guides. Will book accommodation for you.
Accommodation: Can be B&B or bed only
so you need to ask.
Food: Good variety of local dishes and, of course, both pizza and kebaps - usually rolled up wıth French fries. Taratore (cucumber and yogurt soup) delicious.
Supermarkets: Small mini-markets mostly, some called Maxi, larger unnamed ones tend to be hidden-away in the basements of larger shopping complexes.
Transport: Trains are comfortable and cheaper than buses. Return tickets are double the single fare.

Medical: Health Centres or private doctors, in most towns, will treat visitors on the same basis as nationals.

No comments:

Post a Comment