Bansko Travel Guide

  • Things to Do
    by mirchica
  • View from a bungalow, Hotel Katarino
    View from a bungalow, Hotel Katarino
    by mumymama
  • beaut landscape to make hay while the sunshines!
    beaut landscape to make hay while the...
    by angiebabe

Bansko Things to Do

  • Trip to Rila Monastery

    Just came back from a week full of excursions in the Pirin mountains around Bansko. A great place for hiking and excursions with the family. We booked an all-in-one package and the hotel took care of everything, the tranfers, the accomodation, the food. It was a week and everyday a different trip and a different experience. We visited various...

  • Snowshoeing around Bansko

    Bansko is surrounded by mountains - not only Pirin Mountains, where the big ski area is located, but also Rila and Rhodope Mountains. They are all reachable for a day walks and the snow shoes allow us to do a numerous hikes in the wild country in winter. It is a good way to escape the busy ski resort for a day and enjoy the snow, nature, rural life...

  • downhill from the top!

    pro: less peoplecontra: it's scary!!!have a coach before !!!first time I nearly cried when looked down, then - enjoyed the downhill (note: I am a northern girl, so cross-country skiing was part of my school life)


Bansko Hotels

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Bansko Restaurants

  • Best Restaurant in Bansko

    This was my second time in Bansko but i did not know about the Amvrosia restaurant. What i can say is that this is a must restaurant if you visit Bansko. Very good service, the food is just excellent and the restaurant has a nice chic and romantic atmosphere. Dont miss the angus beef and the chocolate sufle. Very impressed!!! Black angus beef.

  • The Big Daddy

    Large traditional Bulgarian restaurant with talented musicians - for a change! If you've had your ears hammered by too loud and tone deaf musicans, you'll be pleasantly surprised. Staff were very welcoming and attentive considering the size of this busy mehana. We were pleased with the menu which had options to suit everyone (BBQ, salads, soups,...

  • Local food and vegetarian options

    An attractive restaurant with an open fire inside serving local dishes including local meat dishes (roast lamb on the spit, kapama etc), soups and salad. Unusually for a local place, this one offers vegetarian options. Because of the relatively small size of the restaurant, it feels quite homely. Try the bean soup, but ask for condiments (garlic...


Bansko Nightlife

  • Gorgeous waitresses !!!

    We found this "Attractive" waitress in a restaurant just down from the Happy End,she provided Billy with somewhere to rest his tired head !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Please enjoy the other photos.

  • Magic Cafe

    Nice place for a drink. During off season you'll easily see the same customers at night and early in the morning for some coffee

  • Nikola Vaptsarov square

    Together with a French student, who stayed at the same hostal, we tried the Bansko nightlife. We think that nightlife, in summer, is especially concentrated along the terraces around the Nikola Vaptsarov place. Its relax hanging around at the terraces and try some of the Bulgarian beers, vodka’s and local wines. Things close around 2 o clock....


Bansko Transportation

  • Bansko by Train - My Personal Preference

    If you enjoy a good train journey then this certainly is one of Europe's most characterful. Travelling from either Sofia or Plovdiv (or anywhere else in the Country) by mainline train services you have to change at the village of Septemvri. From here you join Bulgaria's only narrow gauge railway which then takes you on a winding tour up into the...

  • Bansko Bus Station

    Bansko is well connected to the major cities of West Bulgaria by buses. This page in Bulgarian (the link is under Google Translate) lists all departures to and from Bansko and also fares. Note that buses to Sofia co to either the Central Bus Station or to Bus Station Ovcha Kupel (which Google translates as Sheep Fonts) in the western parts of the...

  • Getting To Bansko By Bus

    Bansko really is in the middle of nowhere, almost 1,000 metres up in the mountains and 150 km and 170 km respectively by road from from Sofia and Plovdiv. The town's bus station is located on the main Patriarh Evtimii road, about 5 minutes walk north of the centre, and is served by regular buses from Sofia (about 7 a day) and less regularly from...


Bansko Shopping

See all 9 Shopping in Bansko
  • Another Lidl as you arrive in Bansko

    When Im driving around Europe as many times as I do by rental car its really handy seeing a Lidl (as much as I dont use them when Im home in London as I prefer to support British rather than importers from Europe - also Ive been told their work and staff ethics are a bit to be desired) - theres always parking so its easy to just drive in and then...

  • Looking For A Bansko Apartment - Look No...

    Bansko is currently undergoing a craze of real estate development and almost every new building, even those that don't look like they'll ever be completed, seems to have "For Sale" signs. This one though - hmmm, I'll have to think about!! 400 euros per square metre does look like a bargain tho'!

  • Not Keeping Up With The Trend

    This is one that caught my eye just after I'd passed the rows of ski hire places with their multi-flourescent ergo-dynamically engineered offerings. I reckoned that these would go perfectly with my designer ski outfit - pic #2 Well obviously skis but a tuba and a "parp-parp" horn might come in handy too? No Idea - but I bet they're not cheap!


Bansko Local Customs

  • Banski starets

    Banski starets(Бански старец) is kind of sausage very popular for that region and it has some specific spices. They use it as an appetizer as well as it participates in some main dishes.A funny story about the name:Try to put "бански...

  • Is There Really A Beach At Bansko?

    I know that the town is looking at every possible way of selling itself outside the winter season but according to my maps the nearest Bulgarian beach is 466 km away at Bourgas.

  • Cheapest Coffee In Town!

    In the centre of Bansko expect to pay about 2 leva for a "cafe normal" and expect to be surrounded by other yabbering tourists showing each other their photos on their digi cameras.However if you just fancy a quiet, cheap, coffee then get across the Tsar Simeon bridge and look out for this little place on ul Vasilak, looking over the river (via a...


Bansko Warnings and Dangers

  • No dangers or warnings for Bansko

    There are no dangers or warnings to describe for Bansko. Its a very relaxed village with friendly people. Of course there are many kidnappers in the park of the village at midnight masked in a clownsuite, but since they dont speak any other language then Bulgarian they are not able to contact and approach foreigners.

  • Avoid national holidays

    The place is overcrouded from 29 Dec to 4 January, from 1st to 7th Feb. because of national holidays - you will be waisting your time in a terrible line to get to the gondola lift. I have started skiing after 12.00

  • Getting stucked in snow and traffic jam...

    I am in hurry to tell about this because of my own bad experience. There is a great amount of cars, which get stucked in non-expected big snows. That's why every car or bus going to Bansko and the whole area in winter must have a complect of wheel-chains. It would be usual if in a likely conditions you lose several hours more to get out of the...


Bansko Tourist Traps

  • bansko mehanas

    Sadly, almost all Bansko's 70-odd mehanas are now little more than tourist traps, complete with predatory waiters, horrible touts mangling cockney english, mediocre food and unpleasant surprises on your bill. the few places that are still honest are crowded - you will have to book. and don't trust the 'ask a local' approach - who are the locals in...

  • unfair pricing in the Sofia airport...

    At the Sofia airport's cafeteria they pretend Leva 1 = Euro 1, when you pay Euro instead of Leva, while the official rate is 1 Euro= 1.95 Leva, so, you pay a double price. We were charged Euro 7 for a sandwich which costs Leva 7 Keep some Bulgarian money (Leva) for the airport before your departure (specially in case of your plane's delay (which...

  • Beat the queues

    During hale term,or any other busy period,I`d recommend paying a few pounds extra and buying a VIP ski pass,this way you just walk past the queues.


Bansko What to Pack

  • ger4444's Profile Photo

    by ger4444 Updated Mar 7, 2004

    Luggage and bags: You dont have to bring extra things whith you, in the expectation that these are not available in Bansko. There are enough stores and shops to buy necessary things you might need for usual dayly life.

    Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: If you need Equipment for skiing, it can be hired at Pirin sport (Gen St Kovachev street nr 8). Hiring equipment costs 20 lv a day. Equipment can also be hired at Intersport (Pirin street nr 71) an at several hotels.

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Bansko Off The Beaten Path

  • Predela - Pirin Pee Festival

    Predela is the saddle between two mountains - Rila to the north and Pirin to the south. Every two years there is a folk music festival 'Pirin Pee' (meaning Pirin Sings) that takes place on the meadow in Predela.The first issue of the festival was in 1962. The next one will be in 2008.

  • Blagoevgrad

    Since, coming probably from Sofia or returning to Sofia, you will anyhow pass Blagoevgrad by bus. You can, waiting for the bus to sofia/Bansko, explore this town then anyway. The city is not that historic as Bansko, but it has a rather open athmosphere, since its an international University town. So, it has a lot of nightclubs and pubs and some...

  • Bansko Hotels

    121 Hotels in Bansko

    3 Reviews

Bansko Sports & Outdoors

  • Where To Catch The Footie - Lions Pub

    The Lions Pub is a sports/party bar, popular mostly with the younger crowd. Its target market seems to be the English youngsters with English beer and the main Premiership football games shown on big TV's, details of the day's games are posted on a blackboard.Its open 24 hours and is renowned for its all-day breakfasts. Not my personal cup-of-tea...

  • Skiing in Bansko

    Take the full joy out of the 70 km of perfectly prepared and efficiently secured snow tracks. The Bansko snow factory with its more that 160 cannons blasting snow day & night, gives you reliable snow coverage from December to May. 25 km of speedy and comfortable lifts at your disposal. 1 gondola lift, 6 four-seat chair lifts, 1 tree-seat chair...

  • Wonderful skiing

    I havent been skiing for 20 years,and what a wonderful place to recapture my skiing skills,and for Billy to learn. In the Gondola station theres a rental area,but the staff are`nt freindly at all,they just give you the boots and skis not bothering to show you how tight they shoud be,how to get on and off your skis.I found them abrupt and...


Bansko Favorites

See all 11 Favorites in Bansko
  • Who's The Guy On The Other Square?

    This is another of Bansko and Bulgaria's favourite sons, Nikola Vaptsarov, a latter-day Levski. Vapstarov was a naval machinist and part-time poet who was actively involved in the communist partisan movement against Boris III and the Germans during the Second World War. He was executed in Sofia by the Germans in 1942.One of his most famous poems is...

  • Who's The Guy On The Main Square?

    This is the Bulgarian Saint Paisii Hilendarski who was reputedly born here in Bansko in 1722. He is generally regarded as having laid the foundations for the Bulgarian National Revival with his publication of the Bulgarian/Slavic history "Istoriya Slavyanbolgarskaya" in 1762, the opening line of which reads: "Why are you ashamed to call yourself...

  • A Bansko Freebie

    Whilst most things in Bansko tend to be more expensive than the rest of Bulgaria at least the water is free. The shops, restaurants and bars will all try to sell you overpriced spring water in plastic bottles but all you need is the bottle. The spring pictured is in the middle of the main Pirin Street and there's also a couple of others around the...


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