The best places to stay in Sofia, Bulgaria

best area to stay in sofia bulgaria

Where to stay in Sofia, Bulgaria: a full guide for the best places to stay in Sofia

best area to stay in sofia bulgaria

I love living in Sofia. It was a love at first sight. The city is my home for the last 15 years. It is the perfect base for a traveller – cheap with a lot of history and great nightlife. Sofia is an awesome destination for a long weekend escape, too.

Choosing where to stay in Sofia, especially if you are visiting the city for the first time can be a little bit confusing. Usually, when I book a hotel for any trip I take care to choose something right in the city centre. However, this rule doesn’t apply to Sofia. There are few areas in the centre that it’s better to be avoided.

Where I would stay

If I’m visiting Sofia for sightseeing I’ll definitely choose a place right in the city centre. Sofia is not a small city, but the main tourist attractions are packed in an area that you can tour by foot. Bulgaria is a pretty cheap country, so the hotels are not expensive, even the ones right in the heart of the city.

The City Centre

St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral
St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral

If you are visiting the city for a day or two choose the centre of Sofia. All main landmarks, restaurants and bars will be under your nose. You can walk everywhere and avoid using any public transport at all. Just step outside your hotel and feel the atmosphere of the city. Most of the hotels are also located here.

Yet there is one flaw, this area could be a little noisy at night. It depends on where you are staying exactly.

In any case avoid the central parts around Lavov most (Лъвов мост), the Central station and Pirotska Street. There are a lot of immigrants, the areas look quite shabby and they are not safe. Check out the map at the beginning of the post to see which central parts are good to stay in.

Choose the area

If you’re short on time or want to be on a few minutes walk from all clubs and bars.


  • All the must-see sites are in the city centre and you can skip the public transport.
  • Just in case if you need to use the underground, the two metro lines M1 and M2 cross here at Serdika station. Thus you can easily reach any part of the city, even the Sofia Airport.
  • Visit St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral and the Russian Church. Learn more about the history of the city in Sofia History Museum. If you are an art lover go to Square 500.
  • The area is full of small lovely restaurants: Made in Home, Made in Blue, Skara Bar 2, The Little Things.
  • Confetti – the best place for ice-cream in Sofia.
  • Memento – a great spot to start your day with a coffee and finish it with a tasty cocktail while watching the world go by.

The best places to stay in Sofia city centre

Luxury & boutique hotels

Sofia Hotel Balkan – a 5-star luxury hotel with a great location right next to Serdika metro station. The building is a part of the President’s Palace complex. A historical Roman fortress lies beneath its foundation! You can see part of the remains around the hotel.

8.1/10 Rating – See reviews and images of the hotel 

Sense Hotel Sofia – a boutique hotel with an amazing panoramic rooftop bar. The large floor-to-ceiling windows of the rooms reveal stunning views over St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral. It’s one of the best hotels to stay in Sofia!

9.0/10 Rating – See reviews and images of the hotel 

Mid-range hotels

Les Fleurs Boutique Hotel – a 4-star stylish hotel with an excellent location right in the main shopping area of Sofia.
8.9/10 Rating – See reviews and images of the hotel 

Central Hotel Sofia – a 4-star hotel with modern rooms, tasty breakfast and an underground parking. Also, there is a mall only 300m away from the hotel.

8.7/10 Rating – See reviews and images of the hotel 


Vitosha Apartments – comfy apartments with a perfect location, close to the main shopping street, Vitosha Boulevard.
9.1/10 Rating – See reviews and images of the apartments 

Vitosha Downtown Apartments – spacious apartments in an area full of shops and restaurants.
9.0/10 Rating – See reviews and images of the apartments 


Park Zaimov
Park Zaimov

It is a very little nice area quite close to the centre of the city. The area is residential and calm, full of cute little restaurants. There is no metro connection to the city centre, only buses. If you prefer to walk you will need 15 minutes by foot to reach the centre. I really love this area, it has some kind of an old charm.

Choose the area

If you are looking for a quiet central place, not far from the tourist sites.


  • Two great parks are on hand: Zaimov and the Doctor’s Garden.
  • HleBar – try the local delicacy – banitsa.
  • Raketa Rakia Bar – the best place to try the local “whisky” called rakia.
  • Skara Bar 1 – one of the top places for meatballs.
  • Sputnik – my favourite cocktail bar in Sofia.

Where to stay in Sofia, Oborishte

Mid-range hotels

Sofia Residence Boutique Hotel – an exquisite 4-star hotel, close to the city centre on a quiet street with embassies.
8.9/10 Rating – See reviews and images of the hotel 

Crystal Palace Boutique Hotel – a 4-star elegant hotel next to the famous Doctor’s Garden.
9.1/10 Rating – See reviews and images of the hotel 


Sofia Style Apartments – nice and cosy apartments with fully equipped kitchen.
9.0/10 Rating – See reviews and images of the apartments 

Things to do in Sofia

What to do in Sofia in one day

Discover some of the hidden bars of Sofia

Take a day trip to the famous Rila Monastery.

Explore the beautiful Seven Rila Lakes.

How to get from Sofia airport to the city centre

Sofia-Vrazhdebna Airport (Летище София-Враждебна) is located about 10km from the city centre. You can reach it using the public transport. There are two terminals, which are not within a walking distance from each other.

Low-cost companies like Wizz Air and Easyjet use Terminal 1, while all others use Terminal 2. There is a free shuttle transfer between the two terminals every 30 minutes.

The best area to stay in Sofia – map


Further reading for your trip

Visitors often combine Sofia with:

If you’re planning to rent a car, compare the car rental prices in Europe.

What is the best area to stay in Sofia for you?

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Where to stay in Sofia, Bulgaria - The best places to stay in Sofia

About the author
Avatar Milena Yordanova
I'm a travel blogger based in Sofia, Bulgaria. Travelling has always been my passion and I love to discover new places and cultures. I want to show you how easy it is to organize your vacation all by yourself.

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