Bulgaria’s second largest city, Plovdiv (Пловдив) has more obvious charms than Sofia, which locals tend to look down on. The old town embodies Plovdiv’s long history – Thracian fortifications subsumed by Macedonian masonry, overlaid with Roman and Byzantine walls. Great timber-framed mansions, erected during the Bulgarian renaissance, symbolically look down upon the derelict Ottoman mosques and artisans’ dwellings of the lower town. But this isn’t just another museum town: the city’s arts festivals and trade fairs are the biggest in the country, and its restaurants and bars are equal to those of the capital.

Plovdiv centres on the large ploshtad Tsentralen, dominated by the monolithic Hotel Trimontium Princess.

Travel offers; book through Rough Guides

Bulgaria features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

A first-timer's guide to Central and Eastern Europe: 10 places to visit

A first-timer's guide to Central and Eastern Europe: 10 places to visit

Central and Eastern Europe are among the culturally diverse parts of the world, preserving a plethora of deep-rooted traditions. What’s more, large tracts of …

12 Dec 2016 • Jonathan Bousfield insert_drive_file Article
Budget trips: 20 of the cheapest places to travel

Budget trips: 20 of the cheapest places to travel

1. Thailand There’s a reason why Thailand remains so popular with backpackers – it’s got idyllic islands, a rich culture, beach-huts aplenty, tantalising…

21 Aug 2015 • Emma Gibbs camera_alt Gallery
10 reasons to visit Plovdiv, Bulgaria

10 reasons to visit Plovdiv, Bulgaria

Billed as the oldest continually inhabited city in Europe, Bulgaria’s second city of Plovdiv is also one of the continent’s brightest upcoming stars. As wel…

09 Feb 2015 • Jonathan Bousfield insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right