Bulgaria is fast becoming a popular destination for those of us that love to indulge in the pleasure of winter sports. But this ex-communist country has far more to offer than many people think and you will be surprised by the many hidden jewels found in this corner of Eastern Europe. With low cost airlines such as Ryan Air now flying into Plovdiv it is easy to get to any of the ski resorts in Bulgaria even in the depths of winter. The flight time from the UK is approximately 3 hours so you can enjoy even a short break without having to lose days travelling. Bulgaria has been rated in the top 8 ski destinations across Europe due to it’s affordability and facilities.

Best known are the resorts of Bansko, Pamporovo and Borovets which all have great facilities for winter sports holidays, but there are also many other smaller places where skiing is permitted and the prices could well be lower. Of the resorts I’ve visited I found that Uzana was the best place for a budget ski break, maybe it’s not quite as glitzy as the larger resorts but when funds are limited it’s ideal for that last minute break away. Situated in the Stara Planina mountain range Uzana is almost in the centre of Bulgaria, the resort is open all year round and offers horse riding, hiking and rock climbing during the warmer months. The area is totally stunning and with a covering of snow becomes like a scene from a movie, a magical winter wonderland where anyone can enjoy their favourite winter sports without lots of fuss and commercialism

There are 8 ski runs in Uzana, suitable for varying abilities and covering 3km in total. Just 22km from the pretty town of Gabrovo and also close to the revival town of Tryavna you can find many things to see and do if you decide to take a break from winter sports to explore more of the local area. The ski runs at Uzana may not seem as popular as other ski resorts in Bulgaria but it can still get busy, especially at the weekends when locals take advantage of the snow and low prices. For around 10 Leva a day ( a little over £4) you can use the ski runs and lifts and also take in the beautiful scenery that the Stara Planina mountain range has in abundance.

The winter sports season in Bulgaria is just about to start but you still have time to book a bargain break and flights. Accommodation is varied but usually the hotels are quite small and well equipped, eating out costs very little and the people are exceptionally friendly. Bulgaria is a land steeped in tradition and culture with many monuments and festivals, it’s also a land of very few people for the size of the country so you don’t need to feel penned in or overwhelmed by the frantic pace of life and can get out and about in the country and enjoy the fresh air. Having visited Bulgaria a few times myself over the last decade I can not imagine a nicer place to spend Christmas and new year, it certainly features high on my list of places to visit and explore and I hope you will love it too.

This post was written on behalf of Jeff at http://www.worldadventuretravel.co.uk