Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Road Trip!

Our friend Dan, the best man in our wedding, came to Bulgaria to spend almost 2 weeks with us.  We spent time in Bulgaria, visited a neat Bulgarian town, hit up Istanbul, and spent a weekend on the Black Sea coast of Bulgaria.  There was A LOT of driving!

We spent Dan's first couple days in Sofia.  It literally rained every day.  Because of this, we did most of our adventuring at night.

We had traditional Bulgarian fare his first night (forgot my camera that night), the second night we went on a pub crawl that takes you to Sofia's most unique places and the next night we made reservations at this "club" that was really no more than a dingy smokey bar (f you ask me.)  The last night in Sofia we went to our favorite restaurant to pig out on Turkish food (again, forgot my camera.)

The photos below are only from our pub crawl night.

 Dinner before we head out to the park to meet up with the pub crawl folks. 
 Park where we meet up.  This pub crawl takes place every single day of the week.  It's really great if you are just visiting for a few days and need to know the best spots to go to.  This was our second time on the pub crawl, each new stop is a "surprise" and they always get a kick out of seeing if my husband knows about each new place.  Of course,  there are never any surprises for him :)
 Our first stop, a brewery

There is a bar that is solely lit by candles (although they have electricity.)  It's called The Barn and feels like you are in a barn.  There is always this old lady there with this cool dog.  Our friend befriended the dog this night and carried him around on his leash. ha.
 Our next stop was The Apartment which is literally an old apartment.  Albiet it must have been a rich persons apartment because it's pretty big.  It's quite "hipster"-ish with all sorts of different rooms that you can "hang out" in.  Ours had it's own old school Mac computer that we could control the music on.  One time someone told me this used to be some sort of "secret" apartment...maybe like the neighborhood communist headquarters or something?  My history is so terrible

 The last stop on the Pub Crawl was to a Rock and Roll club.  We literally got table service, had our own seating, everything that you would expect of a regular "club" except they play LOUD rock and roll music.  It was a nice change from hearing non stop techno music like you do everywhere here but it was too LOUD for me.  Maybe I'm old?!?
After our weekend in Sofia we hit the road for Veliko Turnovo.  Veliko Turnovo was the "original" capital of Bulgaria but I believe they had a hard time guarding/protecting it so it was move to Sofia, which happens to be set in a valley surrounded by mountains.  Anywho, I've been wanting to visit VT since we arrived in Bulgaria but had very LOW expectations since most things in this country are of poor quality, especially outside of the big city.  I was completely SURPRISED at how lovely this town was! AND it was POURING down rain during our time there.

Matt rented us a $38/night suite at this hotel.  It was definitely a pleasant surprise as well.  Definitely not the Ritz, but could have been SO much worse.

 It was raining SO hard and the "walking street" just at the entrance to the fortress was completely torn up. We literally had to wade through mud (sans my Wellies!) to get to the fortress. 

 We were even surprised by a FABULOUS meal in this quaint little town.  There was literally white glove service.  I dont think I've ever eaten at a "white glove" restaurant.  I would definitely go back here because the food definitely exceeded expectations.  Which, if you ever come visit us in the neck of the world, you'll understand that food quality is just not that of the US.  We have found things that we love and have become our favorites but people fresh off the plane think is just mediocre. 

Tomorrow I'll hit our Istanbul trip (driving there is Bananas!) and our Black Sea trip. 


  1. What fun! That pub crawl sounds cool! I bet ya'll love having friends come and visit :-)

  2. I'm SOOOO jealous! What an awesome trip and sounds like fun...even with the rain. Can't wait to see more pics.