Bulgaria is the latest EU nation to reopen for tourists outside the European Union and is now allowing visitors from over 80+ countries to enter for leisure travel, including Canadians and Americans.
Just like their forward-thinking neighbors Greece and Croatia, Bulgaria has decided not to wait for the EU’s ‘Digital Green Certificate’ expected to launch sometime in June and has instead declared the country is open for tourism effective immediately.
While they still have a few entry requirements to satisfy, Bulgaria has decided on a ‘a la carte’ system of entry rules, which allows the tourist to pick the one that best suits their situation. Incoming travelers can either show proof of a recent negative covid test, proof they’ve recently recovered from the virus, or proof of vaccination.
Below we will go over in detail which countries can visit, an expanded look into entry requirements, and why Bulgaria should be on your 2021 bucket list!
Bulgaria is now open for tourists from the following countries
- Bosnia and Herzegovina
- Burkina Faso
- Central Africa
- Cote d’Ivoire
- New Zealand
- North Macedonia
- San Marino
- Sierra Leone
- South Korea
- South Sudan
Tourists from the above countries can now enter Bulgaria for the purposes of non-essential leisure travel.
Testing or Proof of Vaccination for Entry into Bulgaria
Bulgaria is giving visitors 3 options of how they can safely enter the country. Tourists can choose one of the following three options:
Negative Covid Test: PCR or Antigen accepted. The passenger will need to show proof of a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours of arrival, or a negative Antigen test taken within 48 hours of arrival
Proof of Recovery: The passenger can show a positive PCR or Antigen test, taken 15-180 days before entry to prove a recent recovery from the virus.
Proof of Vaccination: 14 days must have passed from the final shot. Passengers can be fully vaccinated with: J&J, Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca, Sinopharm, Sinovac, Sputnik, and Coviesheild.
Travelers can see all of Bulgaria’s entry requirements here
Are masks still mandatory in Bulgaria?
Indoors, yes. Outdoors, mostly no.
Masks are required inside enclosed indoor spaces and outdoors if 1.5 metres of social distancing cannot be maintained. Masks are not needed while dining, exercising, on the beach, and other outdoor activities.
Bulgaria is an easy stop for a summer tourist, especially vaccinated Americans. Since vaccinated Americans get easy entry to Croatia and Greece just by showing their CDC vaccine card, Bulgaria is another option with the same simple entry requirement.
Affordable beach cities. Bulgaria has great beaches on the Black Sea and is perfect for travelers on a budget, especially when compared to neighboring Greece. Check out Varna, Sozopol and Nesebar.
Lots of businesses and services are open – especially for those wanting to enjoy their vacation. Restaurants are open in Bulgaria for both indoor and outdoor dining, which is great once the heat of summer fully kicks in. If it’s your thing, nightclubs and discos are open at 50% capacity, something you might not find in many other EU nations right now.
Quick and cheap flights: If you want to add on Bulgaria from Greece, you can fly in directly from Athens, Corfu, Zakynthos, Thessaloniki, Mykonos, and Santorini for as cheap as $17 USD.
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Disclaimer: Current travel rules and restrictions can change without notice. The decision to travel is ultimately your responsibility. Contact your consulate and/or local authorities to confirm your nationality’s entry and/or any changes to travel requirements before traveling. Travel Off Path does not endorse traveling against government advisories