How To Get From Sofia To Plovdiv (& Plovdiv To Sofia)

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Post author Drita

Written by our local expert Drita

Drita is a shy Albanian girl. Her Mom is from Kosovo, her Dad from Serbia. She loves to travel & share travel trips to help first-time travelers exploring Albania & the Balkans.

This detailed transportation guide tells you how to get from Sofia to Plovdiv and how to travel from Plovdiv to Sofia.

Bulgaria Travel Blog_How To Get From Sofia To PlovdivDuring a visit to Bulgaria, you might be surprised at how easy it is to get around the country. That’s great news because it means you can see far more during your stay and get to experience plenty of the authentic way of life.

The majority of people arrive in Sofia when visiting Bulgaria. The main international airport is in Sofia, and it is also the capital city. Sofia is packed with plenty of history, and it’s also a very scenic place to visit.

You’ll see countless examples of architecture and old ruins dating back to the Greek, Roman, and Ottoman eras and beyond. There is a beautiful blend of history and the modern-day in Sofia, which means plenty to see and do. But, if you want to head somewhere else for a few days, you’ll find Plovdiv very accessible.

Plovdiv is located in the country’s south, famous for being built on and around seven hills. There is a lot of history in Plovdiv too, and the Ancient Theatre of Philippopolis is a must-visit. You might even be able to catch a show as regular musical performances are held there.

So, how can you get from Sofia to Plovdiv, and of course, back again?

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How To Get From Sofia To Plovdiv (& Plovdiv To Sofia)

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In either direction, there are three main options when traveling between Sofia and Plovdiv.

Bus Sofia To Plovdiv (& Plovdiv To Sofia)

Several providers have regular Sofia Plovdiv bus services (and also Sofia Plovdiv): however, some only run once or twice weekly. You can purchase tickets on any of their websites or at the central bus station in the center of Sofia. The best providers to choose for standard services are MetroTurizm (4 times per day), Valeross (twice per day), Union Ivokoni (twice per day), Municipality of Stara Zagora (4 times per day), and Karat-S (four times per day).

The journey time varies depending on the service you choose and the time of day, but the average is around 2.5 hours.

The same information stands when traveling back from Plovdiv to Sofia, with the addition of another company called BG Razpisanie, which runs three times per day and takes just over 2 hours.

Sofia To Plovdiv By Train (& Plovdiv To Sofia)

Things To Do In Plovdiv - Old theatre ruin in Plovdiv, Bulgaria

The train is a very scenic way to travel between Sofia and Plovdiv and back in the opposite direction. The train takes an average of 3.5 hours, depending upon the service you choose, and is run by Bulgarian Railways.

The train leaves Sofia Central Station and arrives at Tsentraina Gara, also known as Plovdiv Central Railway Station. There are 12-13 services per day, and trains are very comfortable. You can purchase tickets online or at the station itself.

Driving To Plovdiv From Sofia (& Plovdiv To Sofia)

3 Days In Bulgaria - National theatre Ivan Vazov, Sofia, Bulgaria

It is possible to take a taxi from Sofia to Plovdiv (and back again), and the journey should take around 1.5 hours. However, the cost will vary, and it is the most expensive way to get between cities. However, this is an option if you want to sit back and enjoy the ride.

If you want to drive, the journey will take you the same – 1.5 hours, traveling on the A1 road. The distance between Sofia and Plovdiv is 143.5km.

So, now that you know how to get to Plovdiv from Sofia, we wish you safe travels.

Comments (4)

  1. Do you need to book bus tickets in advance, or are you generally safe to just show up at the bus station?

    1. In peak season you should book in advance for sure. Plus, if you are certain of your travel days, book them to avoid disappointment.

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