Partial is this Friday and we want to welcome you to early autumn, yet still sunny Sofia! ☀️ We’re going to talk about the local currency, how to get to the venue and sightseeing in Sofia.
While Bulgaria is in the EU, it’s hasn’t adopted the Euro. Our currency is called Bulgarian Lev and is bound to the Euro around the rate of 1.96 Leva for 1 Euro. Most of our ATMs support Visa and MasterCard and they can be your easier way to get levs. If you have America Express, you may try converting money in a bank.
Public transport in Sofia is cheap. There are three types of it - buses, trams and underground railway (Metro). We recommend using the Metro for your visit here, as it should be the easiest way for you to get to and from the venue.
The ticket machines at the Metro stations only sell single-ride tickets, at the price of 1.6 Leva, or 80 Euro cents. While most of them accept only coins, you can use paper money at some of them. Make sure you have banknotes of 2, 5 or 10 leva, as they do not accept banknotes of 20 and above.
Also, if you are traveling with bulkier luggage (if the dimensions exceed 60х40х40 cm), make sure to take another ticket for your luggage.
There are only two lines of underground trains in Sofia - Line 1 (red), and Line 2 (blue). Line 1 connects the districts of Lyulin and Mladost, while Line 2 connects the Obelya and Lozenets districts.
The conference venue, Hilton Sofia is on the blue line. If you are coming directly from the airport, you should change at Serdika station (red) and take the train in the Lozenets (blue) direction. You will need to get at the station European Union, that’s the closest one to Hilton.
If your flight arrives late, your only option might be taking a taxi to the city center. You may want to avoid taking a taxi from the drivers right at the arrival section. On both terminals, there are regulated taxi stops. It might be better to use them. Take a look at the prices (usually located on back seat window), and make sure that the “TRANSPORT (leva per km)” price is not more than 1.00 lv.
Sofia is an old city, inhabited as early as 7000 BC. For centuries, this has been the city of Thracians, Byzantines, Slavs and Bulgars. It has been the residence of Roman emperors, an administrative centre under the First Bulgarian Kingdom, and a capital of an Ottoman province. You can see a monument of almost each historical era inside the city.
If you are interested in sightseeing, and you won’t go to a workshop, we have organized a Free Sofia Tour with a professional tour guide! We’ll start at 14:00 on Saturday, September 23rd from the entrance of the conference venue, Hilton Hotel Sofia.
We think this may be a fun way to both communicate with the attendees and the speakers in a casual setting and learn something about Sofia as well! Make sure to put your name on the Free Sofia Tour board we’ll have in the conference lobby, so we know how many tour guides we’ll need.
This is it, folks! Can’t way to see you all in Sofia! 💙