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Sofia city guide for students

Useful students guidebook about city of Sofia

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral
Alexander Nevsky Cathedral
The gold-domed Alexander Nevsky Cathedral was built in the early 20th century in memory of the 200,000 Russian, Ukrainian, Belorussian and Bulgarian soldiers, who died in the Russo-Turkish War, 1877–1878. It is one of the largest Eastern Orthodox cathedrals in the world. The cathedral’s gold-plated dome is 45 m high, with the bell tower reaching 50.52 m.

Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski
Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski
The St. Clement of Ohrid University of Sofia or Sofia University is the oldest higher education institution in Bulgaria, founded on 1 October 1888. The university’s edifice was constructed between 1924 and 1934 with the financial support of the brothers Evlogi Georgiev and Hristo Georgiev, whose sculptures are now featured on its façade, and has an area of 18,624 m² and a total of 324 premises.

National History Museum
National History Museum
Founded in 1973, the National Museum of History in Sofia contains more than 650,000 exhibits and is one of the largest history museums on the Balkans. The aim of the museum is to provide a comprehensive view on Bulgarian history from the prehistory to present, in as broad an European context as possible.

Vasil Levski National Stadium
Vasil Levski National Stadium
National Stadium Vassil Levski is a all-seater multifunctionalstadium in the heart of Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria. It’s the biggest venue in its class and it hosts all the games of the National Football Team of Bulgaria. The arena is named after Vassil Levski, the most famous bulgarian hero from the Bulgarian Revival.

Boyana Church
Boyana Church
The Boyana Church, in the eponymous Sofia suburb at the foot of Mt. Vitosha, is one of the few complete and perfectly preserved mediaeval monuments testifying to the significant contribution of Bulgarian monumental painting to European culture in the Middle Ages.

Ivan Vazov National Theater
Ivan Vazov National Theater
The Ivan Vazov National Theatre is Bulgaria’s biggest theatre, as well as the oldest and most stand out and most imposing theatre in the country. This theatre is one of the major landmarks in Sofia due to its prime location and grandiose architecture.

Sofia Opera and Ballet
Sofia Opera and Ballet
50 years have passed since that particular autumn day in 1953 when in Sofia was officially opened the new National Opera, comfortably sheltered into the friendly arms of the Monumental House of BZNS [The Agrarian Union of Bulgaria], named “Alexander Stambolijsky”after the name of its popular leader.

Arena Armeec
Arena Armeec
The main function of Multifunctional Sports Hall Arena Armeec Sofia is to provide to bulgarian athletes the best conditions for performing sport activities. The hall complies with all regulations in operation of the international federations and their rules for organizing and running world and European championships as well as high level commercial tournaments like World League etc.

National Gallery for Foreign Art
National Gallery for Foreign Art
The National Gallery for Foreign Art in Sofia is the only one of its kind in the Balkans. It posseses an unique collection of Christian sculpture of the Indian province of Goa which can be found only in Great Britain and Portugal. Here is the Poetic Reality collection which no other museum has, etc.

The Bells Monument
The Bells Monument
The Bells monument is situated 14 km eastwards from the center of Sofia at the foot of Vitosha Mountain. Children from all over the planet built into the unique monument their faith in the good and bright days without war and violence to come.

National Palace of Culture (NDK)
National Palace of Culture (NDK)
The National Palace of Culture abbreviated in Bulgarian as NDK is the largest multifunctional congress, conference, convention and exhibition center in Southeastern Europe.

The Presidency building
The Presidency building
In the history of modern Bulgarian State, the functions of head of State have been performed by a monarch, a Regency Council and, later on, by collegial bodies like a Presidium of the National Assembly and a State Council. The institution of President of the Republic has a relatively recent history and is associated with Bulgaria’s transition to democracy and with the new structuring of institutions within the context of this transition.

Sofia Airport Terminal 2 (SOF)
Sofia Airport Terminal 2 (SOF)
Terminal 2 was officially opened on 27 December 2006 with the symbolic arrival of Bulgaria Air flight FB 408 from Brussels. The modern architectural design is resembling a spaceship landed amid the Sofia plain.

Palace of Justice in Sofia
Palace of Justice in Sofia
The edifice of the Palace of Justice, being among the most remarkable buildings downtown in the city of Sofia, is situated in the beginning of the pivotal boulevard named Vitosha.

St. Nicholas the Miracle-Maker
St. Nicholas the Miracle-Maker
Walking down Tsar Osvoboditel street you will see the beautiful gold domes of the so-called ‘the prettiest church in Sofia’. Its high dome, surrounded by four smaller domes, all made of gold harmonize perfectly with the roof of the church which is covered with green majolica tiles.

National Academy of Art
National Academy of Art
Today the former Drawing School is called National Academy of Art, which till this very day is still considered to be the most prestigious Bulgarian institution for training professional artists in the field of fine and applied arts, design, conservation and restoration and history and theory of art.

Sofia Zoo
Sofia Zoo
Sofia Zoo is the best place of interest for the kids of Sofia. The capital’s Zoo was found in the beginning of 1888 and is a great place for spending your time with your children. Initially, the zoo was located in the park of the former royal palace, with the primary attraction being a Eurasian Black Vulture caught in Bulgaria and exhibited in a cage in the garden.

Military Academy Sofia
Military Academy Sofia
Rakovski Defense and Staff College is the oldest higher military institution in Bulgaria. It was founded with an Act of the 15th National Assembly of Bulgaria in 1st of March 1912.

St. St.Cyril and Methodius National Library
St. St.Cyril and Methodius National Library
The St. St. Cyril and Methodius National Library is the National Library of Republic of Bulgaria. It is the biggest greatest library in the country and the oldest cultural institute after the Liberation of Bulgaria.

Central Military Club
Central Military Club
The Central Military Club in Sofia is among the masterpieces of the Bulgarian early 20th-century architecture, which still adorns the city center of Bulgaria’s capital city. It is one of the earliest monumental buildings erected after the re-establishment of the Bulgarian state after centuries of Ottoman government.

City Garden
City Garden
Take a break from pounding the city streets and rest up in the leafy Sofia City Garden, with its cafes, swings, flower beds and lovely fountain, where old men gather to play chess.

Borisova garden
Borisova garden
Borisova garden or Knyaz-Borisova gradina translated as Boris’ Garden or Knyaz Boris’ Garden is the oldest and best known park in Sofia. It is certainly well worth a wander, especially to escape from the ubiquitous infernal-combusting engined machines for a short while.

The Council of Ministers building
The Council of Ministers building
The Council of Ministers building is where the Bulgarian government meets every week and where the Bulgarian prime-minister is working. The prime-minister office’s windows are facing the Presidency which outstands on 100 meters from the Government building.

Central Bus Station
Central Bus Station
The Central Bus Station in Sofia, Bulgaria, is a busy national and regional road transport hub, with tens of thousands travellers passing through each week. Bus companies from throughout Europe operate services through the station, reaching destinations in every corner of the continent, from Alicante to Zurich. The station is open seven days a week, 24hours a day.

National Museum of Military History
National Museum of Military History
The National Museum of Military History (NMMH) is a state museum, which is a structure of the Ministry of Defense (respectively the Ministry of War and the Ministry of National Defense). The museum has existed under various names and subordinate to various institutions since 1 August 1914 (in practice since 4 July 1916). It investigates, preserves, processes scientifically and popularizes cultural valuables connected with the national and European military history.

Ariana Lake
Ariana Lake
Ariana lake a medium-sized artificial lake in Borisova gradina (Boris’ garden) in Sofia, Bulgaria. The lake is “B”-shaped, 175 m long and 75 m wide, with a small island at its narrowest point. It is located at the westernmost corner of the park, between the Eagles’ Bridge and the national stadium.

National Art Gallery
National Art Gallery
The National Art Gallery houses over 50,000 pieces of Bulgarian art. It is located on Battenberg Square in the capital city of Sofia, occupying most of the historic and imposing edifice of the former royal palace of Bulgaria.

Diana National Sport Complex
Diana National Sport Complex
Diana National Sport Complex is called by Sofia citizens ‘The Little Olympian’ for its variety of sports and services.The complex is used for carrying out camp-meetings of national and club teams of different sports.

Sofia Art Gallery (City Gallery)
Sofia Art Gallery (City Gallery)
The Sofia Art Ggallery is a museum with longstanding traditions. Its role is to present the facts of Bulgarian cultural history in an analytical and modern way and to actively intervene in art developments by original and impressive projects.

South Park Sofia
South Park Sofia
South Park in Sofia is one of the most beautiful and popular parks in Sofia. It has numerous cafes and places to eat, asphalt paths for walking and bicycle paths between trees suitable for extreme riding.

Inter Expo Congress Center Sofia
Inter Expo Congress Center Sofia
Inaugurated in 2003 the Congress center completed the possibilities of the exhibition complex Inter Expo Center in Sofia for providing the business and public with professional conditions for exhibition participation as well as for organising different types of meetings and forums – congresses, conferences, pressconferences, general meetings, symposia, seminars, presentations, trainings, companies’ celebrations etc.

Alexander Nevsky Crypt Icon museum
Alexander Nevsky Crypt Icon museum
In the construction of St. Alexander Nevski Cathedral they planned the ground floor be a tomb for the Bulgarian kings. But none of the kings was buried there. Therefore in 1965 the space under the church was converted into a branch of art National Art Gallery for Orthodox art.

The Synagogue of Sofia
The Synagogue of Sofia
The Central Synagogue of Sofia has justly been described as the pride of all Bulgarian Jewry. It has symbolized the Jewish community of Bulgaria for almost a century. It is the second largest Sephardic (Spanish-Jewish) synagogue in Europe.

Sveti Sedmochislenitsi Church
Sveti Sedmochislenitsi Church
Looking at the pretty church that stands in the middle of the park, it is not obvious that this was once a mosque. It’s current name is in reference to Sofia being liberated on the feast day of one of the Holy Seven Saints: Sveti Naum.

Saint Sofia Statue
Saint Sofia Statue
If you happen to pass the Sofia city center, you will definitely notice the Statue of Saint Sofia standing on a column in the middle of a bussy crossroad. Her golden face look upon the Batemberg square, where TZUM, The presidensy and the Government houses are situated.

Banya Bashi Mosque in Sofia
Banya Bashi Mosque in Sofia
Once there were 70 mosques in Sofia, but today the Banya Bashi Mosque is the only one still functioning. It was designed in 1576, by the greatest of all Ottoman architects, Mimar Sinan, who also built the Sultan Selim Mosque in Edirne and the Blue Mosque in Istanbul.

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