Sofia

Sofia is a capital of the Republic of Bulgaria. It is located at the base of the extremely popular among alpine skiers mountain, called Vitosha. Sofia, which history runs over seven millennia, is one of the oldest cities in Europe. It is the very sophisticated cultural center, the fusion point of eastern and western cultures, a city full of contrasts and beauty. It can offer for observation numerous historical buildings and churches.  

SAFETY INDEX

See others cities in Bulgaria

Violent crime almost doesn’t exist in Sofia. Most common crimes are theft, pick-pocketing and another financial-motivated offense as in the rest of the country. However, there are places that you’d better not visit or be more careful while passing through them.

Safearound wants to make your trip to Sofia as smooth and relaxed as possible, thus we compiled information concerning all possible risks in Sofia’s neighborhoods. SafeAround will allow you to see on a map the city’s safest and most dangerous areas, details on scams and other possible risks, as well as some useful travel advice in order not to let anything spoil such a wonderful journey to this charming, vibrant city.

 

Warnings & Dangers

Mid Priority-96 OVERALL RISK : LOW

Mugging is another occurrence each tourist should be aware of. The best way to be safe is to stay with a crowd and do not be heavily intoxicated late a night. Kidnapping is a rare phenomenon, but it still exists.  

Mid Priority-96 PICKPOCKETS RISK : MEDIUM

The most common scams are ripping off in taxis.  Drink / Food spiking is known. Many persons in Sofia will try to help you, but some of them might be scammers.  

Mid Priority-96 MUGGING RISK : MEDIUM

Mugging is another occurrence each tourist should be aware of. The best way to be safe is to stay with a crowd and do not be heavily intoxicated late a night. Kidnapping is a rare phenomenon, but it still exists.

Mid Priority-96 SCAMS RISK : MEDIUM

The most common scams are ripping off in taxis.  Drink / Food spiking is known. Many persons in Sofia will try to help you, but some of them might be scammers.

Mid Priority-96 TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : LOW

Risky behavior on the road is common. Locals drive aggressive and traffic is very hectic. Pedestrians we recommend to be very careful crossing the street.

Mid Priority-96 NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : LOW

Bulgaria has experienced earthquakes, but a majority causes little damage. In the winter period the avalanches possible in the mountainous region. We advise following the weather forecast on the National Institute of Meteorology and Hydrology website, where up-to-date information about all weather warnings for Bulgaria is provided.

Mid Priority-96 TERRORISM RISK : LOW

Though the threat from terrorism is low in Bulgaria. In light of frequent terrorist attacks in Europe. We recommend to be vigilant of suspicious activity and abandoned subjects all the time.

Mid Priority-96 WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : LOW

Bulgaria is safe for women travellers. However, the assaults may occur, although relatively rare. If possible try to avoid public drunkenness places if you are alone.  

Carte

WHAT TO DO?

The Center

All main landmarks are here. It is the main spot for pickpockets, especially take care of your belongings on the Central Station and Pirotska Street. Some parts of the central area are a bit seedy and they may be unsafe during the night, hence we advise to be vigilant all the time and follow common sense.

Lozenets

This district is among favorites among locals to live in. Very calm, safe and away from all hustle and bustle. However, you may need to use public transport in order to get to the city center.

Jenski pazar (Women’s market)

The largest open market in Sofia. It is located in the city center and we advise to be cautious when going there because you can meet a lot of pick-pockets.

The lion’s bridge (Lavov most)

This bridge is another hot spot for tourists. During both day and night pickpockets and hookers operate there.
On the top of the mentioned above, we advise avoiding abandoned areas, outskirts of the city. Another danger that you can enforce, is street dogs. Unfortunately, they are numerous on the streets. In the city center they are friendly, however, in remote neighborhoods, they might be aggressive and unpredictable.  

Useful Information

U.S., Australian, European, Canadian visitors may stay in Bulgaria up to 90 days within any six-month period without a Bulgarian Visa. Visit the Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs for more information on the entry and exit requirements for Bulgaria. Make sure your passport has at least six months’ validity from your planned date of return to the country you’re visiting. www.doyouneedvisa.com is a useful website that can help you know if you need a visa or not based on your nationality and the country you’re visiting.
The Bulgarian Lev is the currency of Bulgaria. SafeAround advises to exchange money at exchange bureaus or banks, and never exchange money on the street.
Mexico City and other large cities can be visited year long. Between December and April is the country's high season, particularly in the Yucatan peninsula. Cabo is best visited between October and March.
As in any country, we advise travelers to get a travel insurance that covers not only medical problems but also theft and loss of personal items. Learn more on our travel insurance page