Bulgaria although up and coming still offers some great skiing that is not only perfect for beginners and families but also offers exception value for money.
Borovets nestles at the base of the ski area of the Rila Mountains and with its pine clad surrounding provides more than a little winter magic that will appeal to even the most jaded of travellers.
The friendly atmosphere and the sense of fun that can be found at Borovets is in no small way due to its absolutely perfect location for those that not only want to learn to ski but want to have lots of laughter doing it, it is impossible to stress how laid back this resort is and how it suits every member of the party whether they ski or not; for a budget break in the snow Borovets stands out as a real contender.
With a snow range of 1300-2500m the resort itself at 1300m sits just below the 58kms of slopes and offers a varied programme of sports activities, there is of course the great ski runs but with the added attractions of night-skiing, snowboarding, skidoo and ski jumps all which add a little bit extra to an already fun filled holiday.
There are 25 runs in the Borovets area of which the majority are classed as intermediate although four of them are considered to be challenging, the additional 35kms of cross country skiing does also add some much needed variety to this reasonably small resort. Just beyond the resort centre is an excellent ski school that has seen many beginners pass through its doors, the great instruction and experience of the staff shines through and most beginners will be confident enough to quickly move on to the intermediate slopes.
The intermediate runs are of a great standard and with a well organised network of lifts are easily reached with the minimum of fuss, they may not be the most exciting slopes in the world but they are consistently good albeit limited in number. Advanced skiers have little to interest them apart from the excellent off piste and cross country skiing, however the Yastrabets area does have some quite challenging runs which may be of interest.
There is no disputing that many people visit Borovets for its renowned nightlife, from low key bars to all out live music and dancing venues most people are in the resort to enjoy themselves, and enjoy themselves they do; dining out is also popular with great value meals served throughout – it may not be the finest cuisine in the world but like everything else in the resort it is fun filled and lacks any pretension whatsoever.
Activities away from the skiing include horse drawn sleigh rides through the magical woodland areas which have more than a hint of Narnia about them, bowling alleys, swimming pools, and spa facilities at some of the larger hotels; those looking for something more cultural will find the Bulgarian capital Sofia close enough to enjoy a day or evening out that will satisfy their craving for something different.
The excellent value of the resorts extends into the wide choice of accommodation and whilst it may not be filled with luxury chalets the resort offers hotels that are more than adequate as a cost effective base for your holiday. This resort is all about simple and comfortable and nowhere does this better then the Hotel Flora, wonderfully cheap and yet wonderfully welcoming it has a wide range of facilities including incredibly sensibly priced self catering apartments that operate alongside the traditional hotel rooms.
The ski season runs from mid December until Mid April and although the snow is not always reliable there is 45% snow making to compensate; although not necessarily the resort for more serious skiers Borovets is an excellent resort for those wanting a great time on the slopes with a price that won’t break the bank.