From Bucharest to Sofia

We always used to say that if you arrived in Bucharest by bus then something, somewhere, had gone very, very wrong. This, after all, is a city with no real, central bus station, in a country where many inter-city buses are little more than glorified minibuses.

In some parts of the In Your Pocket empire the bus (or coach, as we tend to call it in Britain) is in fact the best way to get around. The Baltics, where trains are as good as non-existent (railway lines up there were built to go to and from Moscow) has a famously good coach service, with many of the coaches being positively luxurious, such as the VilniusRiga Express:

Anyway, last week we got a call from a friend who will be travelling from Bucharest to Sofia next month for In-ger-land’s European Championship qualifier there on September 1st. He was adamant that he did not want to take the train (because, as is the wont of trains in these parts, it takes a circuitous route to its destination), while flying was out as prices for a return trip were already north of €300. He didn’t fancy driving either.

So he asked us if we knew of any buses which did the Bucharest – Sofia trip. We didn’t then, but we do now.

As it turns out, the fastest (and by far cheapest) way to get by non-airborne public transport from Bucharest to Sofia is in fact by coach. There is a daily service, the coach leaving Bucharest at 16:00 and arriving in Sofia just under seven hours later. The only stop (border checks excepted) is at Ruse.

The price is €18 single, €35 return. The Bucharest departure point is the Double T bus stop at the very end of Calea Victoriei (where it meets the river). In Sofia the coach arrives and departs from the city’s huge bus station, itself next to Sofia train station.

Though the route is operated by a Bulgarian company and not Double T, their office at Calea Victoriei 2 (next to where the coach stops) will sell you tickets for the Sofia coach.

As we have not done the journey ourselves yet, we can’t tell you anything about the coach itself. If anyone has, do let us know.

There is more on getting from Bucharest to the capitals of other neighbouring countries here.

  • Bojan Hadziev

    I want to go from Bucurest to Sofia, becouse i missed the airplane in Kiev and don’t have enought money must go auto-stop some km. I hope on wendsday to be in Bucurest. Did i have chance to back in Sofia with some bulgarian or other bus ?

  • Mariana

    I want to go to Bucharest from Sofia in December 30. Do you think it is ok? I have no idea about the road conditions because the winter. How is the best option: train or bus?

    Thanks

    • Bus is the best option. The train is only an option if you take the overnight one and get a sleeper.

  • The bus is operational, and the latest details on times and price can be found here: http://www.travelingwithcookies.com/taking-the-bus-from-bucharest-to-sofia-and-on-to-skopje – I just took it a week ago, and it was easy, once I found the information. 😉

  • Have another way to Bulgaria- speedy, easy, comfortable…
    transfer-ruse-bucharest.com

    :-)))

  • Mr Rearguard

    I’d rather pay north of 1K.Euro than take a rotten bus.

    • Parmalat

      I think I saw some kind of taxis doing Bucharest – Sofia, or rather Sofia – Bucharest because they were labeled in Bulgarian…

      • There are a number of taxis which do Bucharest – Ruse, mainly for Bulgarians using Baneasa airport. For people living in Ruse, Baneasa is their closest airport.

        • Parmalat

          Oh, now I understand why those Bulgarian taxis in Bucharest! Thanks for enlightening me, for a few years I was confused about it :))

  • Craig,

    let me know should you have any deliberations re Sofia I can assist in.

    BR,
    Emil

  • Parmalat

    Are you sure they still operate that route?? Because a few months ago I tried to find one myself and the Double T was the only one I could find, but they said something that the route is not operational anymore.

    Maybe they introduced it again.

    Yes, getting from Bucharest to Sofia is a pain in the ass, just dare to take the train…

    • I spoke to Double T yesterday and yes, the bus runs every day. But note: it is not their bus, although they will sell you tickets for it.

  • Fritz

    I can only comment on the drive to Sofia, never tried a coach or train,
    It’s an easy drive, but can be very long (6hrs to 8hrs) because the speed limit is 80kph on national roads, and you either slow down or anticipate negotiations with the police (spaga works but its price varies).
    There is a motorway stretch close to Sofia (picturesque, through the mountains)

  • And the best way to get from Bucharest to Sofia is… http://bit.ly/qZbAfQ