Founded on the crossroads between West and East, North and South, civilizations and cultures, the key word for Bulgaria is variety. High mountains, deep valleys, lakes and rivers, green forests, grassy foothills, fertile flatlands, sea coast bays and sandy beaches can still be discovered unspoiled by mass tourism. Modern cities, rural villages, fancy cars, donkey-pulled carts, old monasteries and ancient ruins make Bulgaria a bridge between a rich past and fascinating future. In a rapid period of change Bulgarians are hospitable and helpful. It's easy to strike up a friendship with the local people.
Located in the southeast part of Europe, Bulgaria enjoys four different seasons: energetic spring, adventurous summer, colourful autumn and enigmatic winter. The sunny and dry climate pushes the cloudbase higher. The refreshing northerly winds make the thermals stronger. The uncrowded airspace and the epic flying conditions will help you to explore the limits of nature.
Paragliding in Bulgaria may wake up the spirit of ultimate freedom dreaming inside you.
Many people who visit Bulgaria never want to leave; The comments below from different skynomads explain why:
Johannes Damisch, Austria: Bulgaria is the best kept secret of Europe. Asking people in west Europa something about Bulgaria can make you sure of this quotation! This fact has good and bad sides: Bulgaria's economy suffers from west European cliche, stereotypes and unknowing! The benefits: perhapes nowhere in Europe you will find such authentic mystics, cultures, traditional surprises and untouched nature like in Bulgaria. In Bulgaria are one of the oldest tracs of european and human cultures! In flying matters:As a member of the RENEGADE ACROTEAM I've seen many places for good flying, but Bulgaria is one of the best; you can have every kind of flying, soaring along the Black sea, flying softly cross-country over Bulgaria's flatlands, or even fight with strong thermics along the high mountains (between 2.000and 3.000m). There's something for everybody at any time of the year!
It is strongly recommendet once to see this country and look behind its secrets...
Mendo Veljanovski, Macedonia: I have been flying in Bulgaria from 1987 both hangliders and paragliders. The terrains in Bulgaria provide great flying time. There are great abillities for XC flying and make new records... Bulgarians are very hospitable people, especially people from the villages. If you land close to their house they will not let you go without having a drink or salad. As for flying itself the thermals are everywhere: above the mountains and valleys as well. This sport rapidly grows. There are better and better pilots...
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Do I need a visa to come to Bulgaria?
A: Bulgaria is part of the European Union and citizens of all European countries, US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and some other countries can stay without a visa. The rest should obtain a tourist visa (around 30 euro) from the closest Bulgarian embassy.
Q: Is it safe there?
A: Yes. Bulgaria is a geopoliticaly stable, with harmonious relations with the neighboring countries and world forces. After the breakdown of Socialism in Eastern Europe and a big change to a market economy the country is member of the European Union and NATO. Despite some Bulgarians who plant viruses in the Matrix (car theft, prostitution, money faking, drug traffic ) the crime rate in Bulgaria is low and normal safety precautions will make your stay trouble free.
Q: What are the people like?
A: Hot blooded and emotional. Normal and different. In big cities you will find more stressed hard workers. In the countryside you can enjoy space and contact with friendly and welcoming people.
After the post-socialism changes about 1 million (the population of Bulgaria is 8 million) mostly young and skillful people emmigrated to the western world and richer countries. Some remained there and some returned bringing investment and ideas. Many of the people who stayed in Bulgaria (mostly middle aged and older) were disappointed by the change and many still live with little money. In order to survive many people returned back to nature and in the countryside you can still see people using horses for pulling carts or working the soil. Others pick up herbs and develop alternative and traditional medicine (to complement medical treatment). Every year many destill alcohol from the grapes and fruits they produce... The wild spirit in the mountains still escapes the globalization.
Q: What is the food and drinks like in Bulgaria?
A: Tasty and natural! The founders of the Bulgarian state hit bingo because except the variety of landscape, Bulgaria enjoys a very fertile climate and soil: corn, grain, rice, bean, potatoes, grape, tomatoes, peppers, melons, cherries, rose berries, strawberries, blueberries, apples, pears, plums, figs, peaches, apricots, walnuts, peanuts and many other full -flavor vegetables and fruits.
If you have an opportunity try the famous Bulgarian red wine, yoghourt and cheese. In many restaurants you can find some traditional dishes like: "shopska salata" (tomatoes, peppers and cheese salad), "tarator" (cold soup with yoghourt, cucumber and garlic), "mish-mash" (peppers, cheese, eggs...), "kavarma" (meat with vegetables), "drob sarma" (lamb liver with rice), "musaka" (meat, eggs, potatoes)...
Beer is also good and goes well with fried tzatza (small fish from Black Sea)
Q: Is it expensive in Bulgaria?
A: Visitors from Western Europe and America find prices in Bulgaria 2-3 times cheaper. For example a beer is about 0.5 €, a bottle of excellent red wine is 3 €, a dinner in a good restaurant is 5 € per person. Craft souvenirs, textiles, shoes etc. are also a good purchase.