Bulgaria : BDZ
The national rail network of Bulgaria is operated by the Bulgarian State Railways.
- Balkan Express
- Express trains
Description of train operator
The Bulgarian State Railways (Bâlgarski Dârzhavni Zheleznitsi) offers excellent connections to neighboring countries. Train travel is easier and quicker from the eastern to western part of Bulgaria than the north-south connection. This is due to the Balkan mountain range.
Some of the major routes in Bulgaria are the Sofia to Varna rail network and Sofia to Bourgas railway line. A high-speed network is planned for the coming years.
Bulgarian State Railways offers a wide array of discount passes. City Star, Interrail and Rail Plus are passes that can be purchased from Bulgaria’s Rila travel agencies. Bulgaria, being ideally situated on the western side of the Black Sea at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, makes it easy to explore the picturesque region with a Balkan Flexi Pass. The Flexi Pass allows you to travel to Turkey, Greece and Montenegro. Popular international train routes are Sofia-Thessalonian-Athens, Sofia-Istanbul (Balkan Express) and Sofia-Bucharest.
Bulgarian State Railways also operated retro trains. The retro trains range from reconditioned French coaches with onboard buffet to the Corona Express, featuring pre-WWII furnishings, which had been specially made in Germany.
Travellers do not need any advance reservations on most of the Bulgarian State Railways train. It is however recommended to have a reservation for Express trains. The Sofia-Plovdiv, Sofia-Varna and Sofia-Burgas routes are served by Express trains. When in Bulgaria, simply ask for a "zapazeno myasto" which means reservation in Bulgarian.