Holidays to Nessebar line up all the very best bits of Bulgaria’s Black Sea coast. You’ll get to discover a UNESCO-protected old town one day, and Blue Flag beaches the next.
Pearl of the Black Sea
Dubbed the ‘Pearl of the Black Sea’, Nessebar is a Balkan beauty spot with a spectacular old town poking out from its coastline. Over 3,000 years of civilisation have left their mark here, from the Romans to the Ottomans. But you won’t just find ancient history. It’s a bubbling beach town, too. Its seafront has a row of modern hotels stretching out in front of a pristine beach.
New Nessebar Beach is a Black Sea favourite. It’s a 2.5-kilometre arc of fine shingle backed by a long promenade. Awarded a prestigious Blue Flag award, it has firm family credentials, with gently deepening waters, a roll call of watersports, plus restaurants and bars on tap. For something more secluded, try the beach on the north side of town, where you’ll find a swathe of soft golden sand, backed by rolling dunes. It eventually leads to Sunny Beach, Bulgaria’s biggest – and loudest – resort. It, too, has Blue Flag status.
The old town
Connected to the mainland by a narrow strip of land, Nessebar’s old town is on a small, lozenge-shaped peninsula. It crams in 44 churches, plenty of Roman ruins, traditional Bulgarian houses, not to mention an Archaeological Museum and an Ethnological Museum. It’s little wonder UNESCO made it a World Heritage Site. But if you’re all cultured out, there’s a harbour filled with seafood restaurants on the west side of the islet.
The new town
In the new town, the benefits of being out of the eurozone quickly add up once you’ve made your way around the restaurants and cafés. There’s also Bulgaria’s number-one waterpark, Aqua Paradise Nessebar, on your doorstep. And when you’re in need of a little more excitement, the shopping centres and nightclubs of Sunny Beach are only 5 minutes’ drive away.