Wednesday, September 24, 2008


We went to Bulgaria earlier this month to celebrate our 4th wedding anniversary, Nathaniel's first birthday, and just to take it easy after a summer full of conferences, camps, and other activities.
I've been wanting to go to Bulgaria for quite some time now. I even wrote a blog about it way back in 2006.
We had a really great time, and we'd recommend it to anyone who is considering traveling there. The beaches were nice and the accommodations were affordable. We'll probably go back someday.

Here are some of our impressions of Bulgaria:
  • Its really hot.
  • Hungary is hot too, but in a different way. The part of BG we were in, near the Black Sea, has a Mediterranean climate, and its very hot and very dry. On one hot day I asked a shop owner if the weather was normal, or especially hot - he said that they have blazing hot weather from June to September. But, I have to say, that everywhere we went in Bulgaria there was air-conditioning. Even in small little shops and restaurants. That was nice, because we needed it!
  • It reminded us a lot of Mexico.
  • And I mean that in a good way. We like Mexico; we went on our honeymoon in Veracruz, Mexico. There were many things in Bulgaria that reminded us of Mexico, from the dry climate to the sandy beaches and warm sea, from the attitudes of the taxi drivers to the food.
    There were even a lot of Mexican restaurants in Nessebar. There was one next to our hotel, even with a guy in a sombrero trying to talk people into coming inside. We were thinking pretty seriously about it, until the guy told us that they only serve pizza and spaghetti! But there were other restaurants there that served real Mexican food.
  • Great food.
  • We really enjoyed the food in Bulgaria. Rosemary ate a lot of shopska salad, I ate a lot of grilled meat.
    I especially ate a lot of kavarma - a stew kind of thing with tons of spices. I like spicy food, and Bulgarian food made me sweat - which in my book is a good thing.
    They also, like Hungary, are a wine-growing nation, and they had grape vines everywhere. Living in Eger, we don't drink wine very often, but we have gotten to know a bit about wine, and what constitutes good wine - and I was really impressed with Bulgarian red wine, especially one called Thracian Gold.
  • They shake their heads for yes, and nod for no. That's super confusing.
  • At least once a day we got confused by this. Like in a restaurant - you ask for bread and the waitress just shakes her head and walks away. You think for a second, "Man, that waitress is rude!", and by that time she puts the bread on the table. Or at one point I ended up in this small village, almost out of gas, and with no cash - and I was asking if there was a gas station, an ATM, and if I could pay with a card at the gas station. The girl just kept nodding and shaking her head, and I was just terribly confused for a few minutes until I got it straight!

These are just a few general impressions. I'll write a bit more later.
If you'd like to see our pictures from BG, then click here.

And here's a map of our route:

View Larger Map

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