A winter date night series: Exploring the night in Sofia

Do you love wandering cities by night?

Written by Anna Kerezsi, edited by Mila Boshnakova, photos by Unsplash

There are two types of people: those who hate winter because it is cold, wet, and icy, and those who love the falling snow and the special lights that this white layer reflects back to the sky. Indeed, winter is a period of slowing down. Mother Nature is sleeping, our bodies are less energetic, and we cannot get enough sunshine. But it doesn’t mean something bad. Winter is the perfect period of the year to evaluate our lives, to look inside, and reach inner peace. There are still a lot of things to do for those who feel active and can’t wait to go outside. I would like to give you some examples of what to do as a couple if you are ready to explore the winter atmosphere of Sofia.

Vitosha Street is not the only interesting one in the Bulgarian capital. I can give you 20 more reasons to put on your shoes and explore the city: 10 most beautiful streets in Sofia - Part 1 and 10 most beautiful streets in Sofia - Part 2.

The Love Bridge
"Next to NDK, there is a bridge over a highway that overlooks McDonald’s. Not very romantic at first glance, or a second and third glance. But the non-official name of it does all the magic: the Love Bridge. Technically, it’s Bridge of People Who Are in Love, but Love Bridge is shorter for SEO purposes. The name derives from all the young couples who meet up there on their first dates.”
(excerpt from our article 5 places to be on Valentine’s Day)

Ice skating
“In Sofia, the most popular rinks are located at the Winter Sports Palace, the Slavia Ice Centre, and Lake Ariana in Borisova Gradina. Many other well-maintained ice rinks are also available in the ski resorts, as well as in all major cities like Varna, which hosts the indoor Black Sea Ice Arena, and Plovdiv usually opens a nice one in the city center next to the Tsar Simeon Garden.”
(excerpt from our article Sports you can do in Bulgaria this autumn and winter)

Let’s see the checklist:
-Eating dinner in a popular restaurant, done.
-Have a nice walk in the city, done.
-Slip on the ice while holding each others’ hands, done.
What’s next?

Now is a perfect time to choose a good movie, buy some popcorn, and enjoy the moment. Most of the cinemas are reachable by metro from anywhere in Sofia, but some of them are a bit further. It can be a good experience to try all of them and compare which one is better. In the following list you can see them in the order of recommendation. 

Cinema City
in Paradise Mall (Vitosha metro station) is a luminous, well-maintained movie theater. It can be very crowded on the weekends and a bit harder to clean up the popcorn between the movies. However, you can take advantage of IMAX and 4DX screenings and check their straightforward, informative website for more info.

Ciné Grand in Park Center (European Union metro station) is known for its super large, reclining seats. People say it is the most relaxing place even if the movie is not that good, and the temperature of the room is perfect.

Kino Arena, in Bulgaria Mall (15-20 minutes walk from Bulgaria metro station) and in The Mall (15-20 minutes walk from Mladost 1 metro station). Both shopping centers are a bit far from the city center but definitely worth a try. Their website is available in English, although you have to register if you want to select a specific screening.

Lumiere Cinema in NDK doesn’t have too much to offer these days if you are looking for a wide selection of the newest films, but the location is perfect and there are a lot of other cultural events around which you should check if you are nearby. 

Cinema House is one of the oldest cinemas in Sofia and kept its retro ambiance. It is located in the heart of the city, next to the Sofia History Museum. You can watch both the latest movies and some specially picked international films from festivals. Check their schedule, they might have a movie in your language!

For those who are confident in Bulgarian and a bit tired of going to a giant shopping mall for a good movie, G8 is in a former cultural monumental building with a garden and a café (they are also working on a project discovering and representing the history of cinemas in old Sofia). They screen every movie in its original language and with Bulgarian subtitles if needed. Indeed a tiny but cozy place in vintage style.  

We wish you all lots of wonderful moments, romantic memories, and a joyful year to come!

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