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Guest post: Bulgaria

In this week’s guest post, we take a dip in the Black Sea of Bulgaria, at a string of beach resorts in the country’s north. Taking us there is Katya of Great Places in Bulgaria.

NORTH ALONG BULGARIA’S SEASIDE

I said goodbye to noisy resorts five years ago. They are just not right for me anymore. Now I am happy to discover secluded, tranquil places in Bulgaria which are hardly scarred by civilization. And because it’s summer, and because it’s hot, and because it’s time to chill, I am taking you to Bulgaria’s northernmost seaside spots.

Bulgaria’s coastline is comprised of 354 kilometers of seashore, including 120 kilometres of beaches — a gift from the Black Sea to Bulgaria. We, Bulgarians, have not been the best keepers of this treasure over the years. We’ve turned beautiful golden sand beaches into a jungle of buildings and charming fishing villages into crowded resorts. So those of us who prefer to listen to the sound of the sea rather than disco music should head up north, just a few miles from Romania.

Kaliakra Cape
On your way north, stop at Kaliakra Cape, a steep stretch of coast with vertical cliffs reaching 70 meters down to the sea. The area is rich with history from Thracian, Roman and medieval times. You will see the remains of three fortresses and hear the most curious legends. All this makes me wander why so many people over the years insisted on settling exactly in this super-windy place. One look at the sea view and I am done wondering. Instead I look for dolphins, frequent visitors in this vast sea field.

The Coast of Seals

Going up north you’ll reach the small fishing village of Tjulenovo. The name comes from ‘seal’ in Bulgarian. The rocky coast used to be the perfect habitat for the monk seal. Ask a local to take you out on a boat. They’ll charge about 10 to 20 levs per person. That’s the best way to take a good look at the steep reddish rocks with wondrous shapes and caves. And if you didn’t see dolphins by Kaliakra Cape, here you’ll have a better chance.

Krapets
We move up north to the village of Krapets, our target. Admittedly, Krapets is not exclusively charming — no old architecture or narrow paved streets. It is not directly by the beach either; you’ll have to walk about twenty or drive five minutes to get there. It’s just a small laid-back settlement close to miles of lonely beaches with no bars or restaurants, no fast-food dining, ice cream stands or children attractions. Just beaches… If you want to enjoy them though you’ll have to clean up your beach area a bit. Yes, the sea eventually returns what we throw in it.

Looking north from the beach in Krapets you’ll see the Romanian resort Mangalia in the distance. It’s less than 20 miles away but the situation there is totally different — people crammed in like sardines on the small beaches. See the difference?

In Krapets you can rent a house at a decent price or you can camp beachside. If you don’t feel like cooking your own food there is one single place I can recommend for eating out. It is the local pub, cafeteria, restaurant — all in one. You can’t miss it. It’s right in the center of the village and it’s always full in the evening. They have the best grilled fish, called “karagyoz” in Bulgarian. Delicious with a capital D! Simple food and quiet beaches. I’m good for now.

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