Sofia (meaning the holy God’s wisdom), the capital city of Bulgaria, is one of the most affordable central European destinations to host a corporate travel incentive in.
Sofia makes for a great extension trip for a corporate incentive or group tour visiting Istanbul. There’s a short 90 mins. flight or, the more exciting, six hour drive that goes straight through Bulgaria’s second largest city, Plovdiv, originally a Thracian city, conquered by Philip II of Macedon in the 4th century BC and later invaded by Persians, Greeks, Celts, Romans, Goths, Huns, Bulgarians, Slav-Vikings, Crusaders and Turks.
A day tour through here would be a great history lesson! Read more here .
And last but not least the fact that Sofia is not among the well known incentive & meeting destinations makes it even more attractive because it offers better value for money.
Sofia has a humid continental climate with an average annual temperature of 10.2 C (50.4 F). The best time to visit Sofia are the months of July and August as these two summer months have the maximum hours of daylight and the gardens, parks and all the scenery come alive and look their best.
Here's a quick guide to planning a 3 day trip for a group tour
or travel incentive for employees, dealers, distributors and doctors.
Sofia is a compact city and the best way to see it is on foot. This non-profit company organises a free 2 hrs. walking tour, covering about 35 sights, for small groups of individual travellers. For larger groups, get in touch with them in advance to work out the logistics. Pictured below is their route map and the sights you should expect to see in sequential order.
Experience a rafting adventure on the Struma river - a great team building activity in Sofia.About 130 kms. (2 hrs.) south of Sofia is the Kresna Gorge, the launch point for rafting trips down the Struma river. This activity operates everyday at 10 am, 1 pm and 4 pm. The activity is suitable for beginners as well as experienced riders. The 11 kms. track takes about 3 hrs. to descend. Each boat, captained by a professional instructor, accommodates 6-8 persons.
Finish off the activity with a barbeque lunch or some cocktails while taking in the view and reliving the experience!
On the way back to Sofia, take a small detour to the Monastery of Saint Ivan of Rila.The Rila Monastery is the most famous Eastern Orthodox monastery in Bulgaria. It is situated in the southwestern Rila Mountains, 117 kms. south of the capital Sofia.
Here are some tips for your last day in Sofia. If you haven't already bought those all essential souvenirs to take back home, head towards the small shops in the subways.
The market in front of Alexander Nevski Cathedral is popular for the antiques from the communist era, icons and hand made home decoration.
The Mall is Bulgaria's largest shopping mall and also has a Carrefour store.
Vitosha Blvd. is Sofia’s main shopping street. The retail outlets of many western brand names are concentrated on the stretch between Patriarch Eftimii Blvd. and St. Nedelya Square (Sheraton Hotel). This is in general an expensive shopping area.