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Top recommendations from locals

From sightseeing to hidden gems, find out what makes the city unique with the help of the locals who know it best.

Church
“The St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral (Bulgarian: Храм-паметник "Свети Александър Невски", Hram-pametnik "Sveti Aleksandar Nevski") is a Bulgarian Orthodox cathedral in Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria. Built in Neo-Byzantine style, it serves as the cathedral church of the Patriarch of Bulgaria and it is believed to be one of the top 500 largest Christian church buildings. It is one of Sofia's symbols and primary tourist attractions.[3] The St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral in Sofia occupies an area of 3,170 square metres (34,100 sq ft) and can hold 5,000 people inside.[3][1] It is believed to be one of the 50 largest Eastern Orthodox Cathedrals and ranks in the top 500 largest church buildings in the world, third-largest Orthodox Cathedral located in Southeast Europe, being surpassed only by two new and not yet fully completed Cathedrals - the Romanian People's Salvation Cathedral in Bucharest and the Church of Saint Sava in Belgrade.[4] Some people believe that from 1931 until 1992 it was the largest finished Orthodox Church in the world, and until year 2000 was the largest finished Orthodox Cathedral.”
  • 97 locals recommend
Theatre
“NATIONAL THEATRE SOFIA The National Theatre “Ivan Vazov” in Sofia is the largest and most influential theatre in Bulgaria and the small park in front is a favourite hang-out spot for Sofia residents and tourists alike. THE BUILDING Save Unlike similar buildings in many other European capitals, “The National” is brick-red in color, which makes it particularly photo-friendly. The building was completed in 1907 in the Classical architectural style typical of the times. It has been the permanent home to the National Theatre company ever since. The theatre is named after the Bulgarian literary patriarch, Ivan Vazov, but residents refer to it simply as “the National”. The theatre’s opening ceremony in 1907 did not go uneventful. Envisioned as a celebration for the masses, it turned political when angry university students booed the King upon arrival. In retribution, the King, and his government, closed down Sofia University for six months. THE AREA Save The small park in front of the National Theater is a favorite late-night hangout spot for the young crowds. In the warm summer months, this is a great place to stop by for a drink at one of the several open-air cafés. Save Backgammon players in front of the National Theatre During the day, the area turns into a chess and backgammon battlefield, attracting slightly older visitors. ”
  • 58 locals recommend
Art Gallery
“The National Art Gallery is situated in the former royal palace of Bulgaria. In the halls where once ministers and royalties took decisions, today you can make a historic run through the artworks of Bulgaria’s most prominent artists. Be sure to not miss the bright winter garden, dedicated to temporary photographic exhibitions. Behind the gallery/palace is a small and quiet park.”
  • 24 locals recommend
Shopping Centre
“Big shopping center, with a lot of shops and restaurants. Great place to spend time on a rainy day. ”
  • 30 locals recommend
Bar
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“Located in a house, a cultural monument of the city, One More is one of Sofia’s most beloved and visited bars. In spring and summer the garden awaits you with refreshing plant life and light cocktails. In the cold months the stylish interior, mix of history and adventurous contemporary design, provides various hot drinks and fine tunes. Also: the taste and quality of the appetizers and sandwiches here would make most restaurants envious.”
  • 30 locals recommend
Park
“Great place for families with kids. Zaimov is another one of Sofia’s numerous gardens. The fountain and the buildings around it bear a nice nostalgic feeling towards the middle of the 20th century. It is a pleasant urban oasis in the middle of the city offering plenty of entertainment — table tennis, actual tennis and vast lawns on which you can crash with a cheap local beer in hand.”
  • 19 locals recommend
Gastropub
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“Step back in time at Raketa, a restaurant that teasingly harkens back to the era of socialism in Bulgaria with its Communist memorabilia and other retro decor. You'll want to explore the extensive selection of rakia, a traditional Balkan spirit similar to brandy. Take recommendations from your server if you feel overwhelmed, and perhaps stumble over to Sputnik next door afterwards to continue the night with some offbeat, unique cocktails. Reservations recommended.”
  • 39 locals recommend
Restaurant
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“Literally the restaurant is hosted by a beautiful, a 140 years old, blue house. For me, every time I walk into their little cosy garden or enter in one of their rooms is like going inside a fairy-tale - a promise of mysterious story or a hidden secret. As if Tim Burton was hired to do the interior, almost animated, but at the same time arty and retro. I can't explain the food there, except for one word - tasty! It is a mixture of what you think you know, but find out you had no idea. The menu is short and seasonal and totally affordable. It has just a pinch of the pretentiousness of a fancy restaurant sprinkled over wholesome meals and full plates. Do not miss!”
  • 33 locals recommend
Restaurant
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“The Little Things actually spreads itself across two floors and a shared yard of an old house. As promised, here you’ll find plenty of details, antiques, old books and furniture. Thankfully, the same principles are applied to the varied and tasty menu. The food bares homely and provencal feel with a careful balance between vegetarian and meat recipes.”
  • 25 locals recommend
Church
“This beautiful church is known for the crypt, located beneath the main floor of the church itself, housing the remains of Saint Archbishop Seraphim, where people often go to write letters with prayers and wishes.”
  • 18 locals recommend
Park
“At the centre of this neat garden there is a monument, dedicated to the medics, who gave their life in the Russo-Turkish War (1877-1878). Hence the name. The garden’s lawns are always well trimmed, with beautiful hedges, many benches, plenty of lights, and even ancient ruins. Favorite place for parents and children during the day and a cool spot for beer or two at night. We predict that the Doctor’s garden will be a trending spot in 2016. ”
  • 20 locals recommend
Modern European Restaurant
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“Can you think of something more appropriate than spending a Friday night than having a party in bar Friday? I can’t either. Located right in the centre next to National Theatre ‘’Ivan Vazov’’ provides you with the chance to turn your chilly afternoon to a wild night with your friends.”
  • 21 locals recommend
Park
“ However, probably the most crowded one of them all is the City Garden. Also known as “the garden in front of the National Theatre” it truly is one of the most social places in town. Enjoy a drink or two with your friends in this great outdoor environment! ”
  • 20 locals recommend
Opera House
“Grand opera house & local landmark opened in 1953, hosting global opera & ballet stars.”
  • 7 locals recommend
Church
“The Oldest church in Sofia. The city takes its name from it. There are beautiful mosaics and early Christian tombs underneath.”
  • 25 locals recommend
Diner
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“when you like many people, plenty of dishes, back ground music and dynamic ”
  • 14 locals recommend