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What are my options to get from Bucharest (ROM) to Sofia (BUL)?

I tried searching for a bus, but I only get 100€ option - link. This can't be the only one. I can see the train option on dbbahn, but no price, and the ride is at least 11 hours. Any help?

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4 Answers 4

up vote 6 down vote accepted

One option is Trianastar(BG). There is a daily bus in 16:00 from Bucharest(Filaret), 22:00 in Sofia. One way ticket costs 52 BGN (26 EUR), return ticket costs 82 BGN (41 EUR)

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This seems like the best option. Its relatively fast (compared to train) and cheap. Thanks! –  noobtraveler Feb 16 '13 at 7:33

You can indeed take the train. However it cannot be booked online. According to the Man in Seat 61, the price is 25-30 GBP.

Source: http://www.seat61.com/Bulgaria.htm

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It must be cheaper - one way ticket from Ruse to Sofia costs 10 EUR (razpisanie.bdz.bg) so I think from Bucharest to Sofia will cost no more than 20 EUR, but...travelling with by train in Bulgaria is really not a good idea –  Dirty-flow Feb 15 '13 at 21:53
    
Two points. 1. Crossing a border by train can be expensive. It is often more than just the sum of two national legs. 2. I think that the prices quoted by Mark Smith apply to tickets booked from abroad. If you by them on the place, they might be a bit cheaper. –  PERSONA NON GRATA Feb 15 '13 at 21:58
    
But anyway, we are all very far from the 100 EUR quoted above. That's a lot. I have found one way flights (for next week) for ~ 130 EUR. –  PERSONA NON GRATA Feb 15 '13 at 22:04
    
I found some information in bulgarian forums, it says that the ticket from Bucharest to Ruse is about 10 EUR, and from Bucharest to Pleven(between and Sofia) is 17 EUR. It can be even cheaper, if the OP buy a ticket to Ruse, and then in Ruse buy another one to Sofia(if he has enought time of course) –  Dirty-flow Feb 15 '13 at 22:08

Since i couldn't find any conclusive information on the rumor that splitting the trip from Bucharest to Sofia makes it cheaper i decided to do some empirical research so here goes:

Direct train from Bucharest(from Bucharest Nord) to Sofia costs 140 ROM (35euros) lei and there are few departures per day, 12:55, 23:55 that i am aware of. Direct bus costs 52 Bulgarian Lev (26 Euros) according to http://www.etapgroup.com/?lang=_en making it a cheaper option.

However if you split the trip: Train: a ticket from Bucharest to Giurgiu by train is 36 ROM (8.50 euro) and a ticket from Ruse to Sofia by train is 18.90 Bulgarian LEv (cca 8.50 euro) Making it 17 euros to Sofia. Bus: Although i took a train i got a qoute for a minibus in Giurgiu (to Bucharest) for 15 lei(3.5 euro) The bus from Ruse to Sofia costs more then train and is around 24 LEV(12 euros)

So to sum it up, if you take a minibus(fairly frequent) from Bucharest Filaret station to Giurgiu and then train from Ruse to Sofia you will get the cheapest option = 12 euros.

Giurgiu to Ruse note - IMPORTANT It is possible and quite normal to walk across the Danube bridge. I asked the locals as well as border police and they both said it was legal. Furthermore the pedestrian part is perfectly safe although the height might make some people uneasy.

That being said all in all it is a long walk from Giurgiu to Ruse. In order to be most effective take the bus to Giurgiu because train station is few kilometers further out and it will save you walking time. Follow the road to the bridge and ask for bridge to Bulgaria frequently to make sure you are on the track. It is in the same direction as Astra Football stadium. Once you are on the Bulgarian side, there are local buses that cost 1 lev which can save you about 10 km walking to the train station.

Ruse itself is worth a day visit and makes a pleasant break of the journey. Giurgiu is much smaller but still nice to see.

I was told that there are no minibus option for Sofia on the bus station in Ruse and got offered big more expensive buses, but that info could still be worth checking....

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The best way is to take a train from Bucarest North to Giergiu Nord and then walk 4km and take a Bulgarian train from Ruse to Sofia

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Could you add details of train rides, or train station gps coordinates. I doubt anyone would try and walk 4 km to switch trains just based on a short sentence. –  Vince Aug 27 at 9:43

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