For many people, Bulgaria has often been viewed as simply a cheap and cheerful destination, and is often overlooked when considering European ski options. There is much more to the area than meets the eye. We don’t want you to miss out, so if you’re unaware of the potential that Bulgaria has to offer for your ski holiday, read on.
In the second of our series of blogs – where we highlight some of the reasons why ‘We love Bulgaria’ – we look at why Bulgarian resorts are a great choice for families. Bulgaria has always had a reputation as a destination for young people and partygoers – thanks to the incredibly cheap price of alcohol – but the country offers so much to families. As well as childcare facilities, we look into the range of activities that Bulgaria has to keep the kids entertained, and some more luxurious options for Mum and Dad.
Pamporovo has long been a favourite with families, and the resort has some great value hotels, a good choice of bars and some delightful traditional restaurants. At the ski centre there is a highly rated, pre-bookable Independent Ski Kindergarten, where children have ski lessons in a special fenced off ski garden, complete with child friendly mini drag lift. They look after any children who do not want to ski by entertaining them with playtime and group games.
Pamporovo offers the best priced ‘First Time’ ski and snowboard packages available and ski equipment is provided for the children. An efficient lift system and a free shuttle bus service manage to link the hotels and ski lifts together. In addition to the abundance of sunshine in resort, their snow record is good, which is perfect as no-one wants the little ones to get too cold.
- Suggested hotel: The Hotel Perelik is the only ‘All-inclusive’ hotel offered in Bulgaria – it’s great for families looking to budget ahead and ensure you don’t spend too much on drinks or other extras. Located in the resort centre, it’s got plenty of good sized family rooms. To keep the kids entertained, they have a large indoor pool, a games room and even a bowling alley.
Borovets understandably has a great reputation for people looking for nightlife on their ski holiday, yet plenty of families still flock to this resort. They love the fact that it’s so compact and that the skiing is on the doorstep of virtually all the hotels. They also enjoy the range of non-ski activities for families that are available in resort, such as horse drawn sleigh rides, bumboarding, skidoo safaris, quiz nights and even talent contests. You could try the ‘Flying Doughnuts’, where you slide down the mountain on an inflatable ring, which is great fun for all, whether big or small.
There’s also some traditional entertainment. At Bulgarian evenings you can experience some great regional cuisine and Bulgarian dancing is performed in national dress.
Parents should check out some of the hotel’s Spa prices – they are usually at least 1/2 the price of the UK’s, and Mum and Dad’s need a holiday as well!
There are large swimming pools in Rila and Samokov hotels and a there’s also a Bowling alley located in the Hotel Samokov.
- Suggested hotel: Stylishly decorated throughout, the Alpin Villas are a great choice for families, as the villas can sleep up from two – seven people. The nearest ski slope is also just a few steps away from your villa.
Bansko has some of the very best hotel accommodation to choose from and with the largest ski area in Bulgaria, it often attracts more intermediate skiers and boarders. Beginner skiers and boarders are also well looked after by the excellent local ski school. There is a Junior Ski club, where children will be looked after for the day, with some ski lessons and fun play time in the snow. The recently built high quality hotels in resort, all offer great swimming pools and spas, ideal for Mum and Dad to relax in once they’re off the slopes. In the evenings, take a stroll in the old town and visit some traditional shops and restaurants serving some great local specialties. In the town of Bansko, there are close to 100 restaurants or “Mehanas” offering a variety of Bulgarian and international cuisine, so there is something for even the most picky eaters.
- Suggested hotel: The Hotel Lucky Bansko is a high quality 4 star hotel, located in a central area of Bansko. The family rooms are superb and the food is excellent. There’s a children’s playroom (with supervision for 2-6 year olds for virtually the whole day). There’s also a games room for older children and an indoor pool. Besides the pool, there are some great spa facilities, ideal for when parents have some precious moments to relax.
If any of your family has never skied or snowboarded before or you’re looking for a fun winter holiday with a difference, then Bulgaria has to be top of your list. It has a range of activities on offer, and is incredible value. We’d love to hear from you if you have stayed or are considering staying in Bulgaria for your ski holiday. Let us know in the comments or on our Facebook page.