Burgas, Bulgaria

Travel Guide to Burgas, Bulgaria

Burgas is located in eastern Bulgaria on the Black Sea. As the fourth largest city in Bulgaria and the largest port in Bulgaria, it is an excellent destination for tourists. There are more than 225,000 residents within the city.

The bustling port and wide array of industries ensure that the city offers plenty of dining and nightlife. Burgas is one of Bulgaria's busiest cities, so you are guaranteed to find plenty to see and do.

  • Province Burgas (transliterated as Bourgas)
  • Population 259,985 (Year 2005) )
  • Altitude 30 metres)
  • Postcode 8000)
  • Area Code 056)
  • Geographic Coordinates 42° 30' North, 27° 28' East)
History

A number of artifacts have been found within Burgas that date back to the Bronze and Iron ages. Many ruins also prove that Thracians inhabited the area in times B.C. The name Burgas does not appear in written documentation until the year 1306 when a Byzantium poet included Burgas in a poem. Burgas or the tower was then a thriving Roman seaport.

Burgas is built from the ancient towns of Pirgos, Kastiacion, Skafida, and Rossokastron. Pirgos was famous for its Greek watchtower, hence the city's name.

In 1903, the Burgas railway station opened. This helped expand the area's already thriving trade industry. Trains allowed many people to easily come in and out of the city from other cities and countries.

Site Seeing

The District Museum of History opened in 1925. The exhibition halls display a number of items dating back to the Romans. Meanwhile, the Ethnographic Museum offers a look into the clothing, accessories, fabrics, and embroidery work from the past.

The Museum of Nature and Science is another popular attraction. More than 1,300 varieties of insects, fish, reptiles, and plants are on display. Endangered species are included in these displays.

The Art Gallery opened in 1945. The exhibition halls display many Bulgarian artists works of art. There are statues and paintings from many eras hanging throughout the gallery.

A couple of area churches will delight tourists. Methodius Cathedral is located near the marketplace. The cathedral is popular thanks to its marvelous frescos and the pleasing wooden altar. The Armenian Church, built in 1855 by the local Armenian minority, is an amazing sight to see.

Also located within Burgas, tourists can spend time at the Burgas Philharmonic Hall, the Burgas Opera House, the Burgas Drama Theatre, and the Burgas Puppet Theatre. There are many theatrical performances throughout the year.

If you do not mind taking a short walk from the city centre, the Sea Garden is located on a hill overlooking the Black Sea. The park is packed with things to see and do from the casino to the zoo. An open-air theatre is home to the yearly International Folklore Festival. In addition, a staircase leads people from the park to the sandy beaches of the Black Sea.

Twenty kilometers north of Burgas, Pomorie is a Lake which is surrounded by salt mines. The waters contain a high mineral content that brings many people to the health spas in the area. Atanassovo Lake is in the same area and is home to a large nature reserve where many fish and birds (pelicans, ibis, herons, and more) can be viewed.

Three miles east of Burgas is Saint Anastasia Island. The island houses a church that was used during the exiles of revolutionaries and anti-Fascists during the early 20th century.

Accommodation

The Aqua hotel is located in the city centre and is a five minute walk from the Sea Garden. Seventy-two double rooms, six single rooms, seven family suites, six handicap accessible rooms, five apartments, and one presidential suite. All rooms offer satellite television, room service, private baths, and telephones.

The Hotel Bulgaria offers a buffet breakfast, swimming pool/fitness room, and comfortable lodgings. There are a number of double rooms, single rooms, and suites on site.

Five minutes from the city centre is the Hotel Prestige which is 400 meters from the beach. Rooms are reasonably priced. All guests are welcome to a free buffet breakfast. The hotel offers double rooms or suites.

There are many other hotels in Burgas. Rates can vary greatly depending on the hotel's age and location.

Industry

Besides being Bulgaria’s largest seaport, Burgas happens to have a thriving manufacturing industry. Manufacturing plants, package foods, produce cable, and building machines. There is also one of Bulgaria's largest oil refineries in the port area; Neftochim EAD employs many area residents.

Thanks to the creation of a duty free zone in 1989, trade in Burgas thrives. Close to 87% of Burgas's revenue comes from the manufacturing/industry, and another 7% comes from trade. The remainder of the area's revenue comes from tourism.

Gastronomy

Burgas has many area restaurants and cafes that serve traditional Bulgarian or Serbian cuisine. Meals are usually inexpensive. Creating a travel budget for meals is easy in Burgas.

Royal serves Serbian and Bulgarian cuisine. Drinks and Meals are reasonably priced and include an appetizer, entre, and dessert. Entrees range from Chicken Pletenica to Beef Fillet.

Kehlibar is incredibly inexpensive.

Grolsch is a restaurant based on the popular beer. A bottle of Grolsch is cheap and meals range from calamari to meatball stew. There are three different Grolsch establishments in Burgas, so you are guaranteed to find one close to your hotel.

Evropa specializes in wood grilled pizzas. Live music is always in the establishment with guitarists coming right to your table.

Nightlife

In Burgas, a large number of bars and discos are open until the early morning hours. Burgas is an excellent spot for fun-loving tourists and residents.

Among the numerous discos, one can find spots dedicated to karaoke, live music, and DJ spun dance music. If you enjoy singing, head to Karaoke or Spasso. There the music varies greatly and a good time can be had by all. Live music is the norm at Party Club. Otherwise, a number of dance clubs bring in a different DJ to spin some of today’s best dance tunes. Alibi, Jim Beam, Roxy Club, Silver Club, Shock, Cool Brother, and Excess are open nightly and usually have a great crowd in the house.

Cadife-Silk is a piano bar where a quieter atmosphere delights the older crowd. Melody is a comfortable establishment with nice decor and a friendly staff. Dover Strait has both indoor and outdoor seating. Dover Strait is not fancy, but the reasonable drink prices and pleasant staff make it a popular spot.

Summary

Thanks to the sunny location, temperate weather, gorgeous sea views, and busy city centre, Burgas is an excellent tourist destination. Visitors to Bulgaria can stay in Burgas where dining is inexpensive and shopping is more than reasonable, yet the location and proximity to great train service allows tourists to stay in the city while visiting all the surrounding countryside.