The pretty Balchik: destination for a weekend
I heard too many opinions about the “boring Bulgaria” and its so crowded resorts. Let’s do some justice and give the little fresh town Balchik its charm back. First of all, Balchik is very different from the rest of other seaside resorts on the Bulgarian Black Sea coast. Maybe because of its fishing port huddled below white-chalk cliffs, maybe because of wild vegetation lining on the long road following the sea shore, maybe because of the narrow streets in the town or its beautiful castle and botanical garden or the delicious smell of roses.
Where to stay: Hotel Mistral is a good choice, as well as Regina Maria Spa Design Hotel (from both you can have a beautiful view on the sea). If you don’t want to stay in the city, try a golf club a few kilometers away. My choices: Thracian Cliffs (for the beautiful rocky view over the sea and the most amazing beach I’ve ever seen on Black Sea) or Lighthouse Golf&Spa Resort (the pool is big, and the beach bar worth taking the lunch by the sea). As a plus: both resorts have golf fields (you can take some lessons or you can watch the professional tournaments).
Where to eat: I will always recommend the mussels and the Bulgarian salad, shopska, on Francis Drake restaurant’s terrace (in front of Mistral hotel). I like them even more than those from well-known Dalboka mussel farm in Kavarna. For desserts: try the Regina Maria hotel’s restaurant. I also became a fan of Bulgarian rosé wine (whites and reds are quite nice, but the rosé is perfect!): No Man’s Land and Mezzek are quite good in terms of quality/price.
What to do if you are not so much fan of sunbathing:? Try a walk in the beautiful gardens of Queen Maria castle and a tour through the botanical garden. Or, if you brought your bike, you can take a tour, by the seaside (the road is great, paved, wild on the side, with no vehicles on the way) to Albena and back. The alternatives: golf lessons, therapeutic massages at the hotels’ Spas, a day on the yacht or a relaxed walk in the city of Balchik, admiring the old houses’ architecture and the interesting species of trees (yes, I saw olive and fig trees!). Or you can try an afternoon trip to Cap Kaliakra (the view is simply amazing and the wild figs just tasty, like you never saw them in supermarket!).
To take with you at home: a bottle of wine (try a rosé or the Ice Wine, a nice variety of wine, very sweet, produced from grapes that have been frozen while still on the vine). Or a jar with some roses cream (it smells delicious on the skin).
Not convinced yet? Look at the pictures!