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Bulgaria Travel Tips: A Guide For Christian Travelers

Welcome, fellow travelers, to a journey through the enchanting landscapes and rich cultural heritage of Bulgaria, seen through the lens of Christian faith. Join us as we uncover the wonders of this Southeast European gem, delving into its unique geographical features, rich history, and vibrant spiritual tapestry.

Discovering Bulgaria's Unique Geography

Bulgaria, nestled in Southeast Europe, boasts a diverse landscape bordered by Romania, Serbia, Macedonia, Greece, and Turkey. Despite its relatively small size—slightly smaller than the U.S. state of Tennessee—Bulgaria offers a wealth of natural wonders to explore. From the majestic mountains to the sun-kissed coastlines, Bulgaria experiences four distinct seasons, each offering its own unique charm. Summers are ideal for mountain adventures, while the coastal regions beckon with warm breezes and azure waters.

Bulgaria Bible Verse

Matthew 5:16 - "In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.

Reflection Questions

  • If you had the chance to explain your faith to someone from this country, what aspects or teachings might resonate most deeply given their cultural background? Which might be new to them?

  • How might visiting this country give you a new perspective on your own culture and faith? What assumptions might be tested?

  • How do you think the history of Christianity in this country has shaped the expression and practice of faith there today? What might Christians elsewhere learn from this?

Faith and Culture in the Bulgaria


  • The official language of Bulgaria is Bulgarian. However, many people also speak Russian, and English is becoming more common, especially in tourist areas.

Religious Dynamics

  • 69.5% Easter Orthodox Christian

  • 10.7% Muslim

  • 5% No religion

  • 4.7% Anthiest

  • 4.4% no religion

  • 8% didn’t specify

  • Remainder a mix of religions

Christian History in Bulgaria

Christianity came to Bulgaria in 864 when Tsar Boris I adopted Byzantine Christianity for the region during the First Bulgarian Empire. He stepped down from his throne for a time, but when his son tried to return to the Pagan religion, he uprooted his son from the throne.

Muslims View of the Trinity

In previous blogs we have explored Islam in more depth, but today we are going to focus on some of their confusion regarding the Christian Trinity.

Like Christianity, Islam is monotheist - believing in only one God. However, they city our view of the Trinity (3 persons, 1 God) as proof of the corruption of Scriptures. They also cite the split between Western and Eastern churches over the topic of Jesus being Son of God and Son of Many, as further proof that we don't believe in one God. They take this a step further by claiming the Nicene Conference where the Eastern and Western church split was a political scheme by Constantine to change the understanding of Christians view of the Trinity. The Virgin Mary is another point of contention, as she is often deified in Catholic circles, where they believe she shouldn't be worshiped.

In contrast, Muslims believe the Holy Spirit, as mentioned in the Qa’ran is the not part of the trinity – but is the archangel Gabriel. That Jesus was only a physical man, and that some other many was killed in his place.

Talking points:

If you have the opportunity to share your faith with a Muslim:

  • Ask the Lord to bless and guide your conversation

  • Ask questions about their faith

  • Don’t insult Muhammad or dwell on difference

  • Focus on similarities (virgin birth, jesus did miracles, etc.)

  • False hope in salvation by law, law condemns

  • John 1:1-14, Jesus is the eternal Word of God

  • Don’t say son of God (they view that as physical)

Bulgarian Cultural Etiquette

Understanding Bulgarian cultural norms, such as punctuality, honesty, and the value of socializing over meals, enhances our ability to connect authentically with the local community. A few things to note:

  • Shaking your head means “yes” and nodding means “no”

  • Punctaulity is highly valued

  • Dinners can take a couple of hours as they prefer socializing during a meal

  • They value honesty and can seem blunt

  • It’s customary to stand during an entire church service

  • Coffee shops and social spaces are a big part of their culture

Top Destinations in Bulgaria

Rila Monastery

Nestled within the Rila Mountains, Rila Monastery is a UNESCO World Heritage site and a spiritual haven. Founded in the 10th century, its stunning architecture and vibrant frescoes in the main church tell the story of Bulgaria's rich Orthodox Christian heritage. Experience the tranquility of the surroundings and marvel at the cultural and religious significance of this ancient monastery.

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral

In the heart of Bulgaria's capital, Sofia, stands the majestic Alexander Nevsky Cathedral. This iconic symbol of Sofia, with its golden domes and intricate interior, is a masterpiece of Bulgarian architecture. Explore the spiritual atmosphere within the cathedral, appreciating the blend of history and faith that it represents.

Plovdiv Old Town


Plovdiv, one of Europe's oldest cities, boasts a charming Old Town with cobblestone streets and well-preserved Roman ruins. Immerse yourself in the rich history of the region, wandering through the Revival-era houses and visiting the ancient Roman Theater. Feel the echoes of the past in this vibrant city that seamlessly blends antiquity with modern life.

Pirin National Park


Head to Bansko, a town nestled in the Pirin Mountains and a gateway to the Pirin National Park. This natural haven offers breathtaking landscapes, with alpine meadows, pristine lakes, and diverse flora and fauna. Experience the beauty of God's creation as you explore the hiking trails and take in panoramic views of the mountainous scenery.

Tsarevets Fortress

( Tare.uh.vets)

Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria's medieval capital, is home to the Tsarevets Fortress. Perched on a hill, this fortress is a testament to Bulgaria's medieval history. Wander through the ruins, envisioning the tales of royalty and battles that unfolded within its walls. The Sound and Light show in the evening brings the fortress to life, offering a captivating experience of history and culture.

Bulgaria For Christian Travelers

Faith-Filled Travel to Bulgaria

As we contemplate future travels to Bulgaria, we're inspired to incorporate our faith into our journey. Spending time in the mountains, attending local church services, and praying for the youth and unity among churches enriches our travel experience and deepens our spiritual connection to the land and its people.

Closing Thoughts: Will You Visit Bulgaria?

As our exploration draws to a close, we invite you to reflect on the wonders of Bulgaria and consider embarking on your own adventure to this remarkable country. Will you answer the call to explore Bulgaria's breathtaking landscapes, delve into its rich history, and connect with its vibrant culture? Join us as we journey together, guided by faith and curiosity, into the heart of Bulgaria's spiritual tapestry.

Would you visit Bulgaria with other Christians? We're building a platform to help Christians easily meet up, find worship, and build like-minded community wherever your travels take you - whether it's backpacking through Europe, road tripping across America, or cruising the Bahamas. And we need your help to make this vision a reality! Get early access!

Learn more about other countries on our blog, or access the full itinerary available to our members.

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