What to Expect From a Visit to Bulgaria


Bulgaria has a strong national identity that was formed as a result of its unique history. Its ethnically and culturally diverse population was united under a common language, alphabet and religion which formed the national consciousness. Its contribution to humanity continues to this day.

Food in Bulgaria

Most dishes feature meat or poultry, but a number of vegetarian options are available as well. Yoghurt is a popular addition to many recipes, as is the yogurt made with the microorganism “Lactobacillus bulgaricus” (which gives Bulgarian yoghurt its characteristic taste).

Vegetarian dishes include a wide variety of soups and stews, including traditional Ribena chorba, which is filled with fish, onions, carrots and potatoes. It’s often served with a side of salad or bread.

Salads are another staple, and many restaurants serve a special kind of snezhanka, which is a yoghurt-based dip with cucumbers, walnuts, garlic and dill. It’s often topped with black olives or kashkaval, a yellow mild cheese, similar to mild cheddar.

Cold cuts and sausages are also popular. Lukanka, a semi-dry salami from pork, veal and spices with a distinguishable flattened shape, is one of the most popular. Pastirma, air-dried beef with a similar texture to Italian bresaola, is also popular.

Aside from savory dishes, Bulgarians love to have sweet treats as well. The country produces an impressive range of honeys and bee products with high nutritional value, especially acacia, herbal and pine honey.

Drinks in Bulgaria

A wide range of beverages are consumed in Bulgaria, including wine, beer, fruit juices and alcoholic drinks. The national drink is rakia, a dark rum-based cocktail with a touch of lime and mint. Other popular drinks are kava, a strong coffee-based drink and kumis, a fermented milk drink.

The country has a rich agricultural tradition, with most land being owned by individual farmers. After the fall of communism in 1997, most pre-collectivization landholdings were restored to former owners or their heirs.

During the communist era, people lived in a rural society with little contact with other individuals, so there were few formal social groups. However, there are still some kin groups that have formal structures. The inner circle of kin is called blizki, and in some cases these groups can be found in both rural and urban settings.

Verbs in Bulgaria have a wide array of forms, depending on the subject, number, voice, aspect, tense and gender. There are simple and compound forms as well as hybrid forms that combine aspects and tenses, but some form of the imperfective and perfective are not always used.

Pronouns are also complex in Bulgaria, with different types exhibiting grammatical case inflection. Personal, relative, reflexive, interrogative, negative, indefinitive and summative are among the most common pronouns.

The Bulgarian language is a member of the Slavic family of languages. It is a tonal language and possesses lexical and syntactic distinctions compared to other Slavic languages such as Czech and Polish.

Word order in Bulgarian is neutral, but there are other orders possible. The subject-verb-object word order is the most common, but other permutations exist. The order is primarily determined by topic and focus.