Running in the Land of Roses: Must-Try Routes for Every Runner in Bulgaria

justrt
4 min readJan 5, 2024

Bulgaria, nestled in the heart of the Balkans, is a treasure trove for runners of all levels. From the majestic peaks of the Rila Mountains to the sun-kissed shores of the Black Sea, the country’s diverse landscapes offer breathtaking scenery and challenging terrain to ignite your passion for the run. So, lace up your shoes and get ready to explore the best running spots in Bulgaria!

For the City Slicker:

  • Sofia’s Green Oasis: Immerse yourself in the vibrant energy of Sofia, Bulgaria’s capital, while running through its sprawling parks. Borisova Gradina, the largest park, boasts forested trails, lakes, and open spaces, perfect for a scenic jog. For a historical touch, weave through the ancient ruins of Serdica, the Roman predecessor of Sofia.
Borisova Gradina Park, Sofia, Bulgaria
  • Plovdiv’s Hilly Charm: Plovdiv, Bulgaria’s cultural gem, offers a unique running experience with its ancient Roman theater and cobbled streets. Climb the Youth Hill for panoramic views and a challenging incline, or explore the Kapana district, a maze of colorful houses and artisan shops, for a more leisurely run.
Youth Hill, Plovdiv, Bulgaria

For the Nature Lover:

  • Seven Rila Lakes: Embark on a breathtaking journey through the Rila Mountains, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Seven Rila Lakes trail, winding past glacial lakes and emerald meadows, is a moderate challenge with stunning scenery. Refuel at one of the charming mountain huts along the way.
Seven Rila Lakes, Bulgaria
  • Rhodopes Revelation: The Rhodopes, a mountain range spanning Bulgaria and Greece, are a paradise for trail runners. The Hrabrino-Zdravets trail, with its dense forests and rocky outcrops, offers a challenging adventure. For a gentler option, explore the rolling hills and wildflower meadows around Smolyan, a picturesque mountain town.
Rhodopes Mountains, Bulgaria

Check out my video about the Top Spots to Run in Bulgaria

For the Beach Bum:

  • Black Sea Bliss: Let the sound of crashing waves be your soundtrack as you run along the golden sands of Bulgaria’s Black Sea coast. Sunny Beach, Nessebar, and Sveti Vlas offer endless stretches of beach for a refreshing run, while the historic towns of Balchik and Sozopol provide scenic coastal paths with ancient ruins to admire.
Sunny Beach, Bulgaria
  • Varna’s Seaside Charm: Varna, Bulgaria’s maritime capital, boasts a beautiful seaside park with dedicated running paths and stunning views of the Black Sea. Combine your run with a visit to the Sea Garden, a sprawling park with museums, botanical gardens, and a dolphinarium.
Varna, Bulgaria

Bonus Tip: Don’t forget to factor in the seasons when planning your runs. Spring and autumn offer pleasant temperatures and blooming landscapes, while summer can be hot and humid, especially along the coast. Winter brings a magical snowy wonderland to the mountains, perfect for a challenging run, but be sure to check weather conditions and wear appropriate gear.

Whether you’re a seasoned marathoner or a casual jogger, Bulgaria’s diverse running scene has something for everyone. So, lace up your shoes, breathe in the fresh air, and discover the unique beauty of this Balkan nation on foot!

P.S. Don’t forget to share your Bulgarian running adventures with us in the comments below!

I hope this blog post inspires you to explore the incredible running routes Bulgaria has to offer. Remember, every run is an adventure, so get out there and discover your own hidden gems in the Land of Roses!

Check out my video about the Top Spots to Run in Bulgaria

--

--

justrt

Every step is a thank you, every beat of my heart a celebration. This blog is where gratitude meets grit, where fitness fuels passion, and where stories unfold.