Dancing Up a Storm In Sofia

Trip Start Feb 01, 2005
Trip End Dec 31, 2020

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Where I stayed
Hotel Robina

Flag of Bulgaria  ,
Tuesday, May 31, 2011

 Our friend Marisa from the last Busabout trip had said "You must do the folk dancing night in Sofia" It was an optional extra but we are so glad we took her advice! 

After arriving at the lovely Hotel Robina, with a piano bar on the 17th floor (more about that later) we quickly got ready to go out on a casual city walking tour. We were amused to see a changing of the guard, a little similar to the one we saw in Athens, with strange steps and uniforms with lovely long feathers on the hat. This time however there was a hilarious twist. One of the guards couldn't keep the straight face as he was supposed to. In the end he had a huge grin on his face, as the more he tried to get back to a blank face the more we laughed and the more the other guard frowned at him! It was such a hoot. 
Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria, is lovely! Beautiful old buildings surrounded by green parks, statues and fountains, are at the foot of a large Mt. Vitosha. It seems more 20th century than most Eastern European cities we have seen.

After our walking tour, we continued on foot to the place where we were to have an ethnic  dinner and show. We sat on a long table and huge platters were brought out, of flat bread with BBQ'd vegetables, dips and salads. Drinks were quite cheap and before long a floor show was underway of singing and dancing. Main course was huge platters again, this time of hot meats and vegetables. The floor show took on a faster pace as belly dancers took to the floor and guests were picked to dance. Before long we were all standing on our (very sturdy!) chairs and dancing to the hypnotic beat of Bulgarian folk music. It was a brilliant night and still all in a party mood, we all taxied back to the Hotel Robina and up to the 17th floor piano bar where excessive, drinking, dancing, singing and laughing continued. We were among the last to head off to bed.

Next morning we had a rare free morning. We hopped in a taxi and went off to see the UNESCO World Heritage listed Boyana Church, then wandered around Sofia. We were charmed by their little streetside shops, (see pics) where you have to bob down to see inside.

Our bus had a flat battery when it was time to leave for the city of Plodiv, so we had a little more time in the end to enjoy the foyer of the Robina Hotel and use the free internet.     
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