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A Detailed Overview of Bulgarian Telephone Phrases

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Can you imagine the world today without smartphones? 

Thanks to these useful devices, people can speak to each other regardless of existing distance or time barriers. 

In recent years, texting and instant messaging have surpassed phone calls in popularity—but knowing how to communicate over the phone is still an essential skill! 

As a language learner, you should familiarize yourself with the most common Bulgarian telephone phrases for effective communication. To give you a headstart, BulgarianPod101 has prepared this in-depth overview of key phrases and dialogue examples.

After studying this extensive list of Bulgarian phone call words and phrases, you’ll no longer have to be afraid of the language barrier when picking up the phone. Knowing these phrases will give you the confidence you need to have a fulfilling conversation with any native Bulgarian speaker who may call: a friend, a neighbor, a landlord, or even an employer!

Become Confident Leading Phone Conversations with Bulgarians!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Bulgarian Table of Contents
  1. Useful Words and Phrases for Your Phone Call
  2. Beginning the Phone Conversation
  3. Phone Conversation Parts
  4. Ending a Phone Call
  5. Sample Phone Conversations
  6. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn the Bulgarian Language

1. Useful Words and Phrases for Your Phone Call

You might find it helpful to start by learning the basic words, phrases, and terminology related to phone calls. Take a look: 

Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish
телефон telefonphone
мобилен телефон mobilen telefonmobile phone
смартфон smartfonsmartphone
батерияbateriabattery
зарядноzaryadnocharger
телефонът звъниtelefonat zvanithe phone is ringing
вдигам телефонаvdigam telefonato pick up the phone
говоря по телефонаgovorya po telefonato talk on the phone
свързвам се по телефонаsvarzvam se po telefonato connect by phone
обаждам се по телефонаobazhdam se po telefonato call on the phone
приключвам разговораpriklyuchvam razgovorato end the conversation
затварям телефонаzatvaryam telefonato ring off / to hang up
зареждам телефонаzarezhdam telefonato charge the phone
оставям съобщениеzatvaryam telefonato leave a message

2. Beginning the Phone Conversation

Do you know what to say after picking up the phone to a Bulgarian speaker? Let’s start with the very first phrases you could say and what you should expect in reply.

The first phrase after picking up the phone

Informal Bulgarian phone phrases

Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish
Ало!Alo!Hello!
Моля!Molya!Hello!
Да, моля!Da molya!Hello!
Ало, кой е?Alo koy e?Hello, who is this?
Ало, кой се обажда?Alo, koy se obazhda?Hello, who’s calling?

Formal Bulgarian phone phrases

Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish
Добър ден, слушам!Dobar den, slusham!Good afternoon, I’m listening!
Компания Графити, добър ден!Kompaniya Grafiti, dobar den!Graffiti Company, good afternoon!
Компания Графити, с какво мога да Ви бъда полезен/полезна?Kompaniya Grafiti, s kakvo moga da Vi bada polezen/polezna?Graffiti Company, what can I do for you?

Please note that the masculine and feminine forms are different in that last question. Here are the individual phrases, for your convenience: 

  • Компания Графити, с какво мога да Ви бъда полезен?
    Kompaniya Grafiti, s kakvo moga da Vi bada polezen?
    Graffiti Company, what can I do for you?

    – when the speaker is male
  • Компания Графити, с какво мога да Ви бъда полезна?
    Kompaniya Grafiti, s kakvo moga da Vi bada polezna?
    Graffiti Company, what can I do for you?

     – when the speaker is female

Introducing yourself

Introducing Yourself during the Phone Call

After the initial greeting, the next thing to do is introduce yourself. Let’s see the informal and formal ways to do this, respectively. 

Presenting yourself (informal)

When you call your friend or someone else you’re closely acquainted with, here’s how to introduce yourself:

Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish
Здравей! Обажда се Петър.Zdravey! Obazhda se Petar.Hello! Peter is calling.
Здрасти! Петър е.Zdrasti! Petar e.Hi! It’s Peter.


Presenting you and your company (formal)

Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish
Добър ден! Казвам се Петър Петров и съм представител на компания Графити.Dobar den! Kazvam se Petar Petrov i sam predstavitel na kompaniya Grafiti.Good afternoon! My name is Petеr Petrov and I am a representative of Graffiti Company.

Asking if it’s convenient to speak

Regardless of whether the conversation is formal or informal, it’s polite to ask whether the person you’re calling is available to speak or not. Here are some Bulgarian phone phrases to help you do this:

Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish
Удобно ли е?Udobno li e?Is it convenient?
Удобно ли е да се чуем?Udobno li e da se chuem?Is it convenient to talk?
Имаш ли малко свободно време?Imash li malko svobodno vreme?Do you have some free time?
Можеш ли да ми отделиш пет минути?Mozhesh li da mi otdelish pet minuti?Can you give me five minutes?
Можеш ли да говориш сега или да се обадя по-късно?Mozhesh li da govorish sega ili da se obadya po-kasno?Can you talk now or shall I call you later?

Now, let’s add some of these phrases to the greetings and introduction phrases we saw earlier:

(informal)

Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish
Здравей! Обажда се Петър. Удобно ли е?Zdravey! Obazhda se Petar. Udobno li e?Hello! Peter is calling. Is it convenient?
Здравей, Петър! Да, удобно е.Zdravey Petar! Da udobno e.Hello Peter! Yes, it is convenient.
Здрасти! Петър е. Удобно ли е да се чуем?Zdrasti! Petar e. Udobno li e da se chuem?Hi! It’s Peter. Is it convenient to talk?
Здравей, Петър! Разбира се.Zdravey Petar! Razbira se.Hello Peter! Of course!

(formal)

Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish
Добър ден! Казвам се Петър Петров и съм представител на компания Графити. Можете ли да ми отделите пет минути?Dobar den! Kazvam se Petar Petrov i sam predstavitel na kompaniya Grafiti. Mozhete li da mi otdelite pet minuti?Good afternoon! My name is Petеr Petrov and I am a representative of Graffiti Company. Can you give me five minutes?
Здравейте, съжалявам, но в момента съм зает. Обадете се по-късно.Zdraveiyte, sazhalyavam, no v momenta sam zaet. Obadete se po-kasno.Hello, I’m sorry, but I’m busy right now. Please call later.

3. Phone Conversation Parts

Now that you know what to say after picking up the phone and how to present yourself, it’s time to proceed with the different parts of the phone conversation.

Starting with the reason for the call

  • If you’re returning a call, you could say:

(informal)

Търсил си ме.Tarsil si me.You have called me.

 (formal)

Търсили сте ме.Tarsili ste me.You have called me.

After this phrase, the other person usually takes their turn to explain their reason for calling.

  • If you’re calling someone for a certain reason, you could start with:

(informal)

Обаждам се да ти кажа, че…Obazhdam se da ti kazha, che…I’m calling to tell you that…
Търся те, за да говоря с теб.Tarsya te, za da govorya s teb.I’m calling to talk to you.
Търся съвет за…Tarsya savet za…I’m looking for advice on…

 (formal)

Обаждам се да Ви представя новия ни продукт…Obazhdam se da Vi predstavya noviya ni produkt…I am calling to present to you our new product…
Обаждам се да Ви попитам кога е удобно да се срещнем.Obazhdam se da Vi popitam koga e udobno da se sreshtnem.I am calling to ask you when it is convenient to meet.

If you’re interested in how to invite a person somewhere, you can take a look at this lesson.

  • If you’re not calling for a specific reason, but just to hear the person, you can say one of the following phrases: 

(informal)

Обаждам се само да те чуя.Obazhdam se samo da te chuya.I’m just calling to hear you.
Обаждам се само да те чуя как си.Obazhdam se samo da te chuya kak si.I’m just calling to hear how you are.

This is typical only for informal situations.

Asking to speak to someone

Speaking on the  Phone

If you understand that the person who picked up the phone is not the one you want to talk to, then you can ask:

(informal + formal)

Мога ли да говоря с Иван?Moga li da govorya s Ivan?Can I talk to Ivan?
Търся Иван.Tarsya Ivan.I’m looking for Ivan.

You could receive different answers to this request. Here are three possibilities:

Разбира се, един момент, моля!Razbira se, edin moment, molya!Of course! One moment, please!
Съжалявам, в момента го няма. Обадете се след час.Sazhalyavam, v momenta go nyama. Obadete se sled chas.Sorry, he is not here at the moment. Please, call again in an hour.
Имате грешка, няма такъв.Imate greshka, nyama takav.There is a mistake, we don’t have such a person here.

If you receive that last answer, you could ask whether you’ve dialed the correct phone number:

Това 0877/523-642 ли е?Tova nula osem sedem sedem pet dve tri shest chetri dve li e?Is this 0877/523-642?
Не, набрали сте грешeн номер. Тук е 0877/523-652.Ne, nabrali ste greshen nomer. Tuk e nula osem sedem sedem pet dve tri shest pet dve.No, you dialed the wrong number. It is 0877/523-652.

    → If you’re not yet confident in your ability to say or comprehend a phone number in Bulgarian, make sure you check out our lesson on Bulgarian numbers

Then, you could apologize as follows:

Извинете.Izvinete.Excuse me.

Leaving a message

Now, let’s imagine that your interlocutor has said that the person you’re looking for is not currently there. They may ask you whether you would like to leave a message for them. Here’s a sample dialogue for you: 

(formal)

Съжалявам, в момента го няма. Искате ли да му предам нещо?Sazhalyavam, v momenta go nyama. Iskate li da mu predam neshto?Sorry, he is not here at the moment. Would you like to leave a message for him?
Да, ако обичате предайте му, че го е търсил Петър.Da, ako obichate predayte mu, che go e tarsil Petar.Yes, please tell him that Peter was looking for him.
Добре, ще му предам.Dobre, shte mu predam.Okay, I’ll tell him.
Благодаря.Blagodarya.Thank you!

Asking someone to wait

Asking someone to wait during a phone call happens frequently in formal conversations. Here are some ways you might be asked to hold on when you call a company.

(formal)

Изчакайте малко, ако обичате.Izchakayte malko, ako obichate.Wait a minute, please.
Един момент да проверя…Edin moment da proverya…Just a second to check…
Изчакайте така, докато Ви прехвърля…Izchakayte taka, dokato Vi prehvarlya…Please wait while I transfer you…

Speaking with a Phone Operator

Asking for clarification

Sometimes, due to connection issues or the language barrier, you might not understand what your interlocutor has said. How can you ask for clarification? Let’s see:

(formal)

Извинете, можете ли да повторите?Izvinete, mozhete li da povtorite?Excuse me, can you repeat please?
Не Ви чух добре, бихте ли повторили?Ne Vi chuh dobre, bihte li povtorili?I didn’t hear you well, would you repeat?
Връзката е лоша и не Ви чух добре.Vrazkata e losha i ne Vi chuh dobre.The connection is bad and I didn’t hear you well.
Бихте ли повторили, ако обичате?Bihte li povtorili, ako obichate?Would you repeat if you may?
Разбира се.Razbira se.Of course.

4. Ending a Phone Call

There are a few ways you can end your Bulgarian phone conversation. We’ll explore both informal and formal phrases below.

Saying Goodbye to Finish the Phone Call

(informal)

Дочуване!Dochuvane!See you soon!
Хайде, чао!Hayde, chao!Okay, bye!
Ще се чуем пак.Shte se chuem pak.We’ll talk again.
До скоро!Do skoro!See you soon!

(formal)

Много благодаря за информацията! Дочуване!Mnogo blagodarya za informatsiyata! Dochuvane!Thank you very much for the information! See you soon!
Благодаря, приятен ден!Blagodarya, priyaten den!Thank you, have a nice day!
Много благодаря за съдействието! Всичко най-добро!Mnogo blagodarya za sadeystvieto! Vsichko nay-dobro!Thank you very much for your cooperation! All the best!

Please note that the word Дочуване! (Dochuvane!) is typical for ending a phone conversation. Although it’s translated as “See you soon!” its literal translation is “Hear you soon!”


5. Sample Phone Conversations

It’s time to see some sample phone conversations in Bulgarian. We’ve provided both an informal and a formal sample to give you a good idea of how to use the phrases you’ve learned so far.

Sample informal phone conversation

Imagine that a person calls his friend to invite him to a birthday lunch together at a restaurant. Let’s see how this phone dialogue might sound:

– Ало!
(Alo!)
Hello!

– Ало, Иване здравей. Петър е.
(Alo, Ivane zdravey. Petar e.)
Hello, Ivan! It’s Peter.

– Здравей, Петре, как си? Какво ново?
(Zdravey, Petre, kak si? Kakvo novo?)
Hello, Peter, how are you? What’s new?

– Добре съм. Всъщност ти се обаждам да те поканя на рожден ден в ресторант “Синчец” тази неделя. Ще празнуваме двамата. Разбира се, аз черпя.
(Dobre sam. Vsashtnost ti se obazhdam da te pokanya na rozhden den v restorant “Sinchets” tazi nedelya. Shte praznuvame dvamata. Razbira se, az cherpya.)
I am fine. In fact, I’m calling to invite you to my birthday party at the Sinchets Restaurant this Sunday. We will celebrate the two of us. Of course, my treat.

– О, звучи прекрасно. От колко часа?
(O, zvuchi prekrasno. Ot kolko chasa?)
Oh, that sounds great. What time?

– Какво ще кажеш за 17 ч. вечерта?
(Kakvo shte kazhesh za sedemnayset chasa vecherta?)
How about five p.m.?

– Тогава съм зает. Може ли да го оставим за 18 ч?
(Togava sam zaet. Mozhe li da go ostavim za osemnayset chasa?)
I’ll be busy at that time. Can we leave it for six p.m.?

– Разбира се, сега ще се обадя в ресторанта да резервирам маса.
(Razbira se, sega shte se obadya v restoranta da rezerviram masa.)
Of course, I am calling the restaurant to book a table.

– Благодаря много за поканата. До скоро!
(Blagodarya mnogo za pokanata. Do skoro!)
Thanks a lot for your invitation. See you soon!

– До скоро! Ще те чакам в неделя в 18 ч. пред ресторанта.
(Do skoro! Shte te chakam v nedelya v osemnadeset chasa pred restoranta.)
See you soon! I will be waiting for you on Sunday at six p.m. in front of the restaurant.

Sample formal phone conversation

Now, let’s imagine that Peter from the phone call above calls the restaurant to reserve a table. Let’s look at how this formal conversation might go:

– Ресторант “Синчец”, добър ден!
(Restorant Sinchets, dobar den!)
Sinchets Restaurant, good afternoon!

– Добър ден. Обаждам се да резервирам маса за двама за неделя.
(Dobar den. Obazhdam se da rezerviram masa za dvama za nedelya.)
Good afternoon. I’m calling to book a table for two for Sunday.

– Да, за колко часа?
(Da, za kolko chasa?)
Okay, at what time?

– За 18 часа.
(Za osemnayset chasa.)
At six p.m.

– Моля, изчакайте момент да проверя… Имаме две свободни маси за този час—едната на балкона, а другата вътре до прозореца. Коя предпочитате?
(Molya, izchakayte moment da proverya… Imame dve svobodni masi za tozi chas—ednata na balkona, a drugata vatre do prozoretsa. Koya predpochitate?)
Please, give me a moment to check… We have two available tables for that hour—one in the balcony and the other one inside by the window. Which one do you prefer?

– Предпочитам тази до прозореца.
(Predpochitam tazi do prozoretsa.)
I prefer the one by the window.

– Добре, отбелязвам. Вашето име?
(Dobre, otbelyazvam. Vasheto ime?)
Okay, I am noting it down. Your name?

– Петър Петров.
(Petar Petrov.)
Peter Petrov.

– Резервацията Ви е приета. Благодаря!
(Rezervatsiyata Vi e prieta. Blagodarya!)
Your reservation has been set up. Thank you!

– И аз благодаря. Приятен ден!
(I az blagodarya. Priyaten den!)
Thank you, too. Have a nice day!

– И на Вас! Дочуване!
(I na Vas! Dochuvane!)
You too! See you soon!

Booking a Table at a Restaurant

BulgarianPod101 has prepared the following lesson on making a phone call in Bulgarian, in case you’d like even more phrases and insight!

6. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn the Bulgarian Language

We hope that you found this detailed overview of Bulgarian telephone phrases helpful and that you’ve gained the confidence you need to handle phone calls like a native. Once you have the phrases memorized, you can start piecing them together to form unique conversations for any situation. 

If you want to learn even more Bulgarian and gain access to study and practice materials, make sure to create your free lifetime account on BulgarianPod101.com

To dive even deeper into the linguistic and cultural specifics, you can turn to our MyTeacher service for Premium PLUS members. This service allows you to choose a private Bulgarian teacher who can assist you, provide specialized learning materials, and review your work. 

Finally, don’t hesitate to share your thoughts and feedback with us! Will these Bulgarian phone call expressions be enough to get you through your upcoming calls, or did we leave something out? We’ll get back to you at the earliest!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Bulgarian

The 200+ Most Common Bulgarian Words for Beginners

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Learning a new language is like building a new house—you need to have a solid foundation to build upon. 

If you’re new to the Bulgarian language, then you’re in the right place! 

BulgarianPod101 has prepared this comprehensive list of the most basic Bulgarian words for beginners. By learning these essential words along with their pronunciation, you’re giving yourself a proper base upon which you can start accumulating new language skills. 

Once you’re comfortable using most of these words, you can proceed further with your studies and start picking up even more advanced words. 

There are a few strategies that can help you memorize these words more easily:

  • Write these words on labels and place them on the corresponding items in your home. This way, you can see them each time you use the item. 
  • Make long lists that have the Bulgarian words on one side of the paper and their meaning on the other side, and try to memorize them several days in a row. After getting used to them, try to practice them at least once a week to save them in your long-term memory.
  • Use flashcards and think of a fun game to play with them; people memorize much easier while playing games.

Are you ready to start? Let’s look at the most common Bulgarian words for beginners!

Have You Just Started Learning Bulgarian? Then This Guide Is Just For You!
Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Bulgarian Table of Contents
  1. Bulgarian Pronouns: Saying Me and You
  2. Let’s Count to 10 in Bulgarian
  3. The Most Common Noun Categories
  4. Bulgarian Verbs: Add More Activity to Your Knowledge
  5. Describe Emotions with Bulgarian Adjectives
  6. Bulgarian Conjunctions
  7. Other Must-know Bulgarian Words
  8. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn the Bulgarian Language

1. Bulgarian Pronouns: Saying Me and You

The first set of words you should add to your Bulgarian vocabulary are the pronouns. These words will allow you to talk about yourself, refer to others, and have conversations about places or objects—even if you don’t know the exact word for what you’re talking about! 

There are four pronoun categories we’ll look at: 

  • Personal pronouns
  • Demonstrative pronouns
  • Interrogative pronouns
  • Question words

Personal Pronouns

There are nine personal pronouns in the Bulgarian language. In a sentence, a personal pronoun takes the place of a noun. Here’s an example: 

  • Мария обича да работи.
    Mariya obicha da raboti.
    Maria loves to work.
  • Тя обича да работи.
    Tya obicha da raboti.
    She loves to work.

PersonBulgarian pronounBulgarian pronunciationEnglish
1st person sg.азazI
2nd person sg.ти / Виеti / Vieyou (casual / formal)
3rd person sg.той / тя / тоtoy / tya / tohe / she / it
1st person pl.ниеniewe
2nd person pl.виеvieyou
3rd person pl.теtethey

Demonstrative Pronouns

Demonstrative pronouns are helpful when you need to ask about a specific item that you don’t know the name of: 

  • Какво е това
    Kakvo e tova?
    What is this?

  • Това е кола.
    Tova e kola.
    This is a car.
  • Какво е онова
    Kakvo e onova?
    What is that?

  • Онова е стол.
    Onova e stol.
    That is a chair.

Car and chair could be replaced with any other noun. 

    → Why not try it yourself? Answer the questions above by replacing the objects with some of the nouns listed in the section of this article titled: The Most Common Noun Categories.

Now, here are the Bulgarian demonstrative pronouns:

NumberBulgarian pronounBulgarian pronunciationEnglish
Singularтози
тази
това
tozi
tazi
tova
this (masculine)
this (feminine)
this (neuter)
Singularонзи
онази
онова
onzi
onazi
onova
that (masculine)
that (feminine)
that (neuter)
Pluralтезиtezithese
Pluralонезиonezithose

* As you may have already noticed, only the singular demonstrative pronouns are classified by gender. In plural, they have only one form.

Knowing How to Say What Is This? in Bulgarian Could be Helpful!

Interrogative Pronouns

Interrogative pronouns make it easy for us to ask questions, so it’s useful to learn the most common ones early on. Please note that, unlike interrogative pronouns in English, those in Bulgarian are classified by gender and number. Let’s see some examples: 

#1 Who?

NumberBulgarian pronounBulgarian pronunciationEnglish
Singular


Plural
кой
коя
кое

кои
koy
koya
koe

koi
who (masculine)
who (feminine)
who (neuter)

who (plural)

In the following examples, the demonstrative pronouns we mentioned earlier are used along with the interrogative pronouns:

  • Кой е този човек?
    Koy e tozi chovek?
    Who is this person?
  • Кои са тези хора?
    Koi sa tezi hora?
    Who are these people?

* Note that the gender/number of the interrogative pronoun is determined by the noun it’s used with. Човек is masculine, so the masculine form of “who” is used: кой. In the second example, хора is plural so we use the plural form of “who,” which is кои. The same rule also applies to the following interrogative pronouns.

#2 What?

NumberBulgarian pronounBulgarian pronunciationEnglish
Singular


Plural
какъв
каква
какво

какви
kakav
kakva
kakvo

kakvi
what (masculine)
what (feminine)
what (neuter)

what (plural)

  • Каква е тази кола?
    Kakva e tazi kola?
    What is this car?
  • Какви са студентите?
    Kakvi sa studentite?
    What are the students like?

#3 Whose?

NumberBulgarian pronounBulgarian pronunciationEnglish
Singular


Plural
чий
чия
чие

чии
chiy
chiya
chie

chii
whose (masculine)
whose (feminine)
whose (neuter)

whose (plural)

  • Чия е тази книга?
    Chiya e tazi kniga?
    Whose book is this?
  • Чии са тези книги?
    Chii sa tezi knigi?
    Whose books are these?
Whose Books Are These?

Question Words

Unlike interrogative pronouns, Bulgarian question words have only one form; they do not change for gender or number. This means they’re easier to learn! 

Bulgarian question wordBulgarian pronunciationEnglish
как kakhow
къдеkadеwhere
когаkоgawhen
защоzashtowhy
колкоkolkohow many/much
накъдеnakadewhere to
откъдеotkadewhere from

  • Накъде отиваш?
    Nakade otivash?
    Where are you going (to)?
  • Откъде идваш?
    Otkade idvash?
    Where do you come from?

Can’t wait to start asking questions in Bulgarian? Then make sure to study our vocabulary list Top 25 Bulgarian Questions You Need to Know.

2. Let’s Count to 10 in Bulgarian

Numbers are another essential component of Bulgarian for beginners. We use numbers every single day, whether we’re jotting down a phone number or checking prices at the grocery store. To get a nice headstart, study the list below! 

NumberBulgarianPronunciationEnglish
0нулаnulazero
1едноednoone
2двеdvetwo
3триtrithree
4четириchetirifour
5петpetfive
6шестshestsix
7седемsedemseven
8осемosemeight
9деветdevetnine
10десетdesetten

Let’s practice them with a phone number:

+359 / 896 544-271

три пет девет / осем девет шест   пет четири четири  – две седем едно
tri pet devet / osem devet shest      pet chetiri chetiri – dve sedem edno

Learning Bulgarian Numbers Has Many Practical Applications.

3. The Most Common Noun Categories

Once you have the pronouns and numbers down, you should focus your efforts on picking up as many nouns as you can. Nouns are a crucial set of Bulgarian beginner words to learn, as they can be used alone to get an urgent point across or used with a verb to form a complete thought.

Below, we’ve grouped the most essential nouns into categories for your convenience.

Time

No.Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish 
1часchashour
2минутаminutaminute
3секундаsekundasecond
4денdenday
5седмицаsedmitsaweek
6месецmesetsmonth
7годинаgodinayear
8сутринsutrinmorning
9следобедsledobedafternoon
10вечерvecherevening
11понеделникponedelnikMonday
12вторникvtornikTuesday
13срядаsryadaWednesday
14четвъртъкchetvartakThursday
15петъкpetakFriday
16съботаsabotaSaturday
17неделяnedelyaSunday
18времеvremetime
19часовникchasovnikclock

People

No.Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish 
1професияprofesiyaprofession
2господин / г-нgospodin / g-nMr.
3госпожа / г-жаgospozha / g-zhaMrs.
4госпожица / г-цаgospozhitsaMiss 
5роднинаrodninarelative
6семействоsemeystvofamily
7приятелpriyatelfriend
8бащаbashtafather
9майкаmaykamother
10братbratbrother
11сестраsestrasister
12бабаbabagrandmother
13дядоdyadograndfather
14чичоchichouncle
15леляlelyaaunt
16братовчедbratovchedcousin (male)
17братовчедкаbratovchedkacousin (female)
18съпругsaprughusband
19съпругаsaprugawife

Family

Places Around Town

No.Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish 
1центърtsentarcity center
2кварталkvartalborough
3магазинmagazinshop
4училищеuchilishteschool
5болницаbolnitsahospital
6общинаobshtinamunicipality
7аптекаaptekapharmacy
8паркparkpark
9университетuniversitetuniversity
10библиотекаbibliotekalibrary
11църкваtsarkvachurch
12градgradcity
13столицаstolitsacapital
14държаваdarzhavacountry

School/Office Essentials

No.Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish 
1тетрадкаtetradkanotebook
2учебникuchebniktextbook
3химикалhimikalpen
4моливmolivpencil
5гумаgumaeraser
6линияliniyaruler
7папкаpapkafolder
8столstolchair
9бюроbyurodesk
10компютърkompyutarcomputer
11клавиатураklaviaturakeyboard
12мишкаmishkamouse
13екранekranscreen
14лаптопlaptoplaptop
15дъска daskaboard
16маркерmarkermarker
17пастелpastelcrayon
18рафтraftshelf

Body Parts

No.Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish 
1окоokoeye
2ухоuhoear
3устаustamouth
4главаglavahead
5косаkosahair
6зъбzabtooth
7ръкаrakahand
8пръстprastfinger / toe
9лакътlakatelbow
10рамоramoshoulder
11коремkoremabdomen
12кракkrakleg
13мускулmuskulmuscle
14нокътnokatnail
15носnosnose
16брадичкаbradichkachin
17гръбgrabback
18кръстkrastwaist
19бедроbedrothigh
20вратvratneck


Food

Food
No.Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish 
1хранаhranafood
2хлябhlyabbread
3месоmesomeat
4яйцеyaytseegg
5сиренеsirenecheese
6кашкавалkashkavalyellow cheese
7млякоmlyakomilk
8плодplodfruit
9зеленчукzelenchukvegetable
10ябълкаyabalkaapple
11крушаkrushapear
12портокалportokalorange
13мандаринаmandarinatangerine
14диняdinyawatermelon
15пъпешpapeshmelon
16ягодаyagodastrawberry
17черешаchereshacherry
18малинаmalinaraspberry
19морковmorkovcarrot
20картофkartofpotato
21зелеzelecabbage
22тикваtikvapumpkin
23цвеклоtsveklobeets
24карфиолkarfiolcauliflower
25броколиbrokolibroccoli


4. Bulgarian Verbs: Add More Activity to Your Knowledge

Add More Activity to Your Knowledge

There are many different verbs that Bulgarian beginners will benefit from learning early on. We’ve created two lists: one for verbs you might use to describe your daily routine and another for miscellaneous verbs you’ll hear often.

Daily Routine Verbs

No.Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish 
1събуждам сеsabuzhdam sewake up
2ставамstavamget up
3мия сеmiya sewash up
4закусвамzakusvamhave breakfast
5обядвамobyadvamhave lunch
6вечерямvecheryamhave dinner
7работяrabotyawork
8учаuchastudy
9отивамotivamgo
10връщам сеvrashtam sereturn
11пазарувамpazaruvamshop
12купувамkupuvambuy
13обличамoblichamdress
14събличамsablichamundress
15обувамobuvamput on shoes
16събувамsabuvamtake off shoes
17мисляmislyathink
18мечтаяmechtayadream
19творяtvoryacreate
20готвяgotvyacook
21чистяchistyaclean
22прибирамpribiramclean up
23разхвърлямrazhvarlyamscatter
24слушамslushamlisten
25гледамgledamwatch

Other Common Verbs

No.Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish 
1четаchetaread
2пишаpishawrite
3вземамvzemampick up
4обичамobichamlove
5харесвамharesvamlike
6мразяmrazyahate
7давамdavamgive
8правяpravyado
9ходяhodyawalk
10разхождам сеrazhozhdam setake a walk
11карамkaramdrive
12пияpiyadrink
13ямyameat
14питамpitamask
15отговарямotgovaryamanswer
16усмихвам сеusmihvam sesmile
17търсяtarsyalook for
18намирамnamiramfind
19бягамbyagamrun
20разбирамrazbiramunderstand
21показвамpokazvamshow
22научавамnauchavamlearn
23говоряgovoryaspeak
24мълчаmalchakeep silent
25искамiskamwant


5. Describe Emotions with Bulgarian Adjectives

Learning the most popular Bulgarian adjectives will allow you to describe different people, things, feelings, and emotions more easily. We’ve divided them into four different groups.

Adjectives that describe people

All the adjectives in this section are presented in two forms; the first form is masculine and the second is feminine. For example:

  • красив мъж (krasiv mazh) handsome man
  • красива жена (krasiva zhena) – beautiful woman

No.Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish 
1красив / красиваkrasiv / krasivabeautiful 
2симпатичен / симпатичнаsimpatichen / simpatichna cute
3мил / милаmil / milakind
4добър / добраdobar / dobragood
5висок / високаvisok / visokatall
6нисък / нискаnisak / niskashort
7строен / стройнаstroen / stroinaslender
8дебел / дебелаdebel / debelafat
9слаб / слабаslab / slabaslim
10умен / умнаumen / umnaclever
11глупав / глупаваglupav / glupavastupid
12работлив / работливаrabotliv / rabotlivahardworking
13мързелив / мързеливаmarzeliv / marzeliva lazy

Adjectives that describe objects

All the adjectives in this section are presented in three forms: masculine, feminine, and neuter. Unlike in the English language, nouns in Bulgarian are assigned grammatical gender and the adjective used with that noun must agree with it in gender. For example:

  • голям стол (golyam stol) – big chair
  • голяма топка (golyama topka) – big ball
  • голямо легло (golyamo leglo) – big bed

No.Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish 
1голям / голяма / голямоgolyam / golyama / golyamobig
2малък / малка / малкоmalak / malka / malko small
3дълъг / дълга / дългоdalag / dalga / dalgolong
4къс / къса / късоkas / kasa / kasoshort
5пъстър / пъстра / пъстроpastar / pastra / pastro  colorful
6широк / широка / широкоshirok / shiroka / shirokowide
7стъклен / стъклена / стъкленоstaklen / staklena / staklenoglass / made of glass
8метален / метална / метално metalen / metalna / metalno metal / made of metal 
9чуплив / чуплива / чупливоchupliv / chupliva / chuplivofragile
10нов / нова / новоnov / nova / novonew
11стар / стара / староstar / stara / staroold

Adjectives that describe emotions

All the adjectives in this section are presented in two forms: masculine and feminine. It will be useful to know both forms as emotions are usually attributed to people. For example:

  • щастлив мъж (shtastliv mazh) – happy man
  • щастлива жена (shtastliva zhena) – happy woman

But you should still keep in mind that some person-related words are neuter gender. For example:

    момче (momche) – boy
    момиче (momiche) – girl

In the case of the first adjective in the table below, you could easily make the appropriate neuter form of the adjective by changing the ending “-a” from the feminine form to “-o.” For example:

  • щастливо момче (shtastlivo momche) – happy boy
  • щастливо момиче (shtastlivo momiche) – happy girl

No.Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish 
1щастлив / щастлива shtastliv / shtastlivаhappy 
2весел / веселаvesel / veselacheerful
3тъжен / тъжнаtazhen / tazhnasad
4замислен / замисленаzamislen / zamislena thoughtful
5угрижен / угриженаugrizhen / ugrizhena  worried
6самотен / самотнаsamoten / samotna lonely
7изненадан / изненаданаiznenadan / iznenadanasurprised
8усмихнат / усмихнатаusmihnat / usmihnata smiling

Adjectives that describe the weather

We present here only the form for neuter gender, because the word време (vreme), or “weather,” is a neuter noun in Bulgarian. For this reason, when describing the weather outside, we use only adjectives in neuter form. 

Examples:

  • слънчево време (slanchevo vreme) – sunny weather
  • Навън е слънчево. (Navan e slanchevo.) – It is sunny outside.

No.Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish 
1слънчевоslanchevosunny 
2дъждовноdazhdovnorainy
3облачноoblachnocloudy
4ветровитоvetrovitowindy
5хубавоhubavonice
6снежноsnezhnosnowy
7мрачноmrachnogloomy


It's Rainy.

6. Bulgarian Conjunctions

Conjunctions are short words that link together, oppose, or separate other words or phrases in the sentence. Here are some Bulgarian conjunctions that are useful to know:

No.Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish 
1иiand
2ноnobut
3аabut
4илиilior
5обачеobachehowever
6защотоzashtotobecause
7въпреки чеvapreki chealthough / even though
8тъй катоtay katoas

Here are a few samples of their usage:

  • Не исках да те обидя, а да ти покажа грешката.
    Ne iskah da te obidya, a da ti pokazha greshkata.
    I didn’t want to offend you, but I just wanted to show you the mistake.
  • Аз те обичам, въпреки че понякога не слушаш.
    Az te obicham, vapreki che ponyakoga ne slushash.
    I love you, even though sometimes you don’t listen to me.

If you’re looking for even more practical everyday Bulgarian words for absolute beginners, check out our list of 100 core Bulgarian words and get studying!

7. Other Must-know Bulgarian Words

To conclude, let’s look at a few helpful lists of Bulgarian beginner words related to the local culture!

Bulgarian National Holidays

Here are some of the most common Bulgarian holidays:

No.Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish 
1Нова годинаnova godinaNew Year’s Day
Celebrated on January 1
2Свети Валентинsveti valentinSt. Valentine’s Day
Celebrated on February 14
3Денят на Освобождението на Българияdenyat na osvobozhdenieto na balgariaThe Day of Liberation of Bulgaria
Celebrated on March 3
4Денят на женатаdenyat na zhenataWomen’s Day
Celebrated on March 8
5ВеликденvelikdenEaster
Celebrated on a different date each year
6Денят на трудаdenyat na trudaLabor Day
Celebrated on May 1
7Денят на българската писменостdenyat na balgarskata pismenostThe Day of Bulgarian Culture and Literacy
Celebrated on May 24
8Денят на народните будителиdenyat na narodnite buditeliThe Day of the People’s Awakeners
Celebrated on November 1
9Бъдни вечерbadni vecherChristmas Eve
Celebrated on December 24
10КоледаkoledaChristmas
Celebrated on December 25

    → In this lesson from BulgarianPod101, you’ll learn even more about Bulgarian national holidays.

Bulgarian National Holidays

Must-try Foods in Bulgaria

If you visit a Bulgarian restaurant, it’s definitely worth knowing the words listed below. These are the must-try dishes that you wouldn’t want to miss during your stay in Bulgaria!

No.Bulgarian PronunciationEnglish 
1баницаbanitsabanitsa pastry
2кисело млякоkiselo mlyakoBulgarian yogurt
3тараторtaratorcold yogurt soup
4шопска салатаshopska salatashopska salad
5луканкаlukankatype of dry sausage
6боб чорбаbob chorbabean soup
7погачаpogachaceremonial bread
8пълнени чушки с оризpalneni chushki s orizstuffed peppers with rice
9печено агнеpecheno agnegrilled whole lamb

Bulgarian Cold Yogurt Soup - Tarator

The Most Popular Bulgarian Cities

You may already have heard about the Bulgarian capital, Sofia, but what are the other major Bulgarian cities you might want to visit? Here’s a list of some popular cities in Bulgaria that are preferred tourist destinations.

No.Bulgarian Pronunciation
1СофияSofia
2ПловдивPlovdiv
3ВарнаVarna
4БургасBurgas
5Велико ТърновоVeliko Tarnovo
6ГабровоGabrovo
7СмолянSmolyan
8ТрявнаTryavna
9БанскоBansko
10СозополSozopol
11БалчикBalchik


8. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn the Bulgarian Language

We believe that this guide to the most common Bulgarian words for beginners will help you build a solid foundation upon which to build your Bulgarian language skills. 

The goal of BulgarianPod101 is to help absolute beginners advance quickly. For this reason, we ensured that this article contained the most essential words in a variety of categories! Once you memorize these words, you should be able to understand native speakers in more beginner-level situations. 

If you create a free lifetime account with us, you’ll gain access to tons of practical lessons that take a fun approach to learning. We even have an entire series of Bulgarian lessons for beginners, which we highly recommend you check out first. 

If you would like to speed up your learning progress even further, you can turn to MyTeacher. This Premium PLUS service allows you to work with a native Bulgarian language expert. He or she will help you learn the basics of vocabulary, grammar, conversations, sentence structure, etc., so you can really start communicating in Bulgarian! 

We’d be happy to hear your feedback about this lesson. Please do not hesitate to share your thoughts with us in the comments below! Which of these words did you find most useful, and what are some words you’d still like to learn?

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Bulgarian

Bulgarian Filler Words: Start Speaking Like a Native

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Fillers are those unnecessary words that people sometimes use without even realizing it. They’re usually associated with slang or lack of education. These parasitic words or expressions interrupt speech and sometimes make it more difficult to understand. The English language is full of filler words, but what about Bulgarian?

There are many Bulgarian filler words, too! BulgarianPod101 has prepared this extensive overview to get you acquainted with them, as you’ll encounter them often in your daily conversations with Bulgarians. It’s interesting to note that fillers in the Bulgarian language are influenced by modern language tendencies and change over time. For the purpose of this article, we’ll be covering some of the most common Bulgarian filler words used today.

Conversation Filler Words
Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Bulgarian Table of Contents
  1. What are filler words and why do we use them?
  2. The 10 Most Common Bulgarian Filler Words
  3. Filler Words in Business Jargon
  4. Cons of Filler Words
  5. How to Get Rid of Filler Words in Your Speech
  6. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn the Bulgarian Language

1. What are filler words and why do we use them?

If you’ve ever spoken with a Bulgarian, you’ve probably heard some words said so quickly that you didn’t understand their meaning. These filler words bear different meanings, and our goal is to help you better recognize and understand them so that you’ll be more prepared for real-life conversations.

It might sound strange, but filler words are multifunctional. People use them in different situations and for various purposes. Here are some of their most common functions and properties:

    ➢ These are parasite words that have no specific meaning. If you remove them from a sentence, it will become more clear and understandable.
    ➢ They do not change the meaning of the sentence.
    ➢ They help people express their emotions more succinctly.
    ➢ Filler words are sometimes used to give the speaker time to think about what to say next.
    ➢ They reveal a kind of linguistic weakness, and are usually used by people who would like to say much more than they actually can.
    ➢ They help the speaker gently approach delicate topics and predispose the listener to them.
    ➢ They are also used to emphasize important points and ideas.
    ➢ Filler words may be used to repeat the same idea again in different words.

Taking into account the various uses of filler words, it’s easier to understand why we’ve dedicated an entire article to them. Let’s now look at some specific filler words in Bulgarian and their English meanings.

2. The 10 Most Common Bulgarian Filler Words

#1

BulgarianLiterallyEnglish Equivalent
Ами… (Ami…)“Well…”

You’ll hear this filler word quite often during conversations with Bulgarians. It’s usually placed at the beginning of the sentence, especially if the speaker is about to give a negative response and isn’t sure what to say next. It can be used before phrases like “I don’t know,” “I can’t,” “alright then,” etc.

A:
Здравей, свободен ли си днес следобед? 
Zdravey, svoboden li si dnes sledobed?
“Hi, are you free this afternoon?”

B:
Ами, не знам още. Трябва да си проверя графика. 
Ami, ne znam oshte. Tryabva da si proverya grafika.
“Well, I don’t know yet. I need to check my schedule.”

A:
Ами, добре тогава. Ще ти се обадя по-късно. 
Ami, dobre togava. Shte ti se obadya po-kasno.
“Well, alright then. I’ll call you later.”

#2

BulgarianLiterallyEnglish Equivalent
Абе… (Abe…)“Well…”

Another frequently used filler in Bulgarian, абе (abe) is quite similar to the previous word we looked at and is placed at the beginning of a sentence or expression. While the previous one could go unnoticed, this filler is quite annoying and typically used in “low culture” speech. 

Абе, ти сега не ми ги разправяй на мен тези неща! 
Abe, ti sega ne mi gi razpravyay na men tezi neshta!
Well, don’t tell these things to me!” / “I know better!”

Абе, аз зная по-добре какво да правя. 
Abe, az znaya po-dobre kakvo da pravya.
“Well, I know better what to do.”

Абе, ти няма ли най-после да проумееш това! 
Abe, ti nyama li nay-posle da proumeesh tova!
“Well, won’t you finally understand this!”

Won't You Finally Understand This!

#3

BulgarianLiterallyEnglish Equivalent
Значи… (Znachi…)“So…” / “Then…”

This Bulgarian filler is used unintentionally by a speaker who is trying to explain something or describe a situation. It can be inserted at any point in a sentence. 

Note: The filler word значи should not be confused with the verb значи, which is translated in English as “means” for the third person singular. Be aware that this word, therefore, can be used either as a filler or as a word with actual meaning. 

Отивам значи вчера на магазина и купувам значи две бири. 
Otivam znachi vchera na magazina i kupuvam znachi dve biri.
“So, I went to the store yesterday and so I bought two beers.”

Значи днес не можеш да излезеш с мен на разходка? Добре, значи, ще отида сам. 
Znachi dnes ne mozhesh da izlezesh s men na razhodka? Dobre, znachi, shte otida sam.
“So you can’t go out for a walk with me today? Okay, then I’ll go alone.”

#4

BulgarianLiterallyEnglish Equivalent
Нали… / Нали разбираш… (Nali… / Nali razbirash…)“You understand…”“You know…” / “You see…”

These Bulgarian filler words are quite common and are normally used when the speaker is searching for affirmation or confirmation from the listener. Note that the filler нали can be replaced by the previous filler значи, as they have nearly the same meaning.

Нали разбираш, не ми беше много лесно. Nali razbirash, ne mi beshe mnogo lesno.“You see, it wasn’t very easy for me.”
Разхождам се нали в парка и изведнъж нали пред мен застава Силвестър Сталоун. Razhozhdam se nali v parka i izvednazh nali pred men zastava Silvestar Staloun.“You know, I’m walking in the park, and suddenly, you know, Sylvester Stallone is standing in front of me.”
I'm Walking in the Park...

#5

BulgarianLiterallyEnglish Equivalent
Виж… / Виж сега… (Vizh… / Vizh sega…)“Look…” / “Look now…”“Look…” / “Here’s the thing…”

Both of these Bulgarian fillers are used to attract the attention of the listener. They’re usually placed at the beginning of the sentence in order to emphasize the importance of what’s about to be said.

Виж, не искам да те обидя. Vizh, ne iskam da te obidya.“Look, I don’t want to offend you.”
Виж сега, минаваш по този път, завиваш наляво и си на точното място. Vizh sega, minavash po tozi pat, zavivash nalyavo i si na tochnoto myasto.“Here’s the thing, you should go this way, then turn left and you’ll be in the right place.”

#6

BulgarianLiterallyEnglish Equivalent
Всъщност… / Фактически… (Vsashtnost… / Fakticheski…)“In fact…”“Actually…”

While these Bulgarian fillers are perfectly fine to use in speech, they can become irritating to the listener if used too much. These fillers cannot be used at the end of a sentence; the speaker adds them when he would like more time to form his thoughts.

Аз всъщност исках да кажа друго. Az vsashtnost iskah da kazha drugo.“I actually wanted to say something else.”
Фактически до сега нищо не съм постигнал. Fakticheski do sega nishto ne sam postignal.“In fact, I have not achieved anything so far.”

#7

BulgarianLiterallyEnglish Equivalent
Сещаш се… (Seshtash se…)“You guess…”“You know…”

This filler aims to keep the other party interested during a conversation. It’s very close to нали / нали разбираш above. By using it, the speaker wants to make the other party empathetic to what they’re saying and to provoke more interest in it. Using this filler too often is indicative of a low culture of speaking.

Here’s how this word might be used in a phone conversation: 
Вчера бях, сещаш се, в ресторанта и там дойде управителят и сещаш се какво ми казаче съм уволнен. Vchera byah, seshtash se, v restoranta i tam doyde upravitelyat i seshtash se kakvo mi kazache sam uvolnen.“Yesterday I was, you know, in the restaurant and the manager came there and, you know, what he told me—that I am fired.”

You might be interested in studying more about how to make a phone call in Bulgarian.

You Are Fired!

#8

BulgarianLiterallyEnglish Equivalent
Викам… (Vikam…)“I shout…”“I intend to…” / “I tell…”

This Bulgarian filler is typically used to replace the verbs смятам (smyatam) – “I intend” and казвам (kazvam) – “I tell.”

Викам да направя една баница. Vikam da napravya edna banitsa.“I plan to make banitsa.”
Обаждам се аз по телефона на мой приятел и му викам да излезем заедно, а той ми вика, че не може. Obazhdam se az po telefona na moy priyatel i mu vikam da izlezem zaedno, a toy mi vika, che ne mozhe.“I called my friend and told him to go out together, and he told me that he can’t.”

#9

BulgarianLiterallyEnglish Equivalent
Човек… / мен… (Chovek… / Man…)“Human” / “Man”“Man…”

These two filler words are equivalent in meaning and are comparatively new, used mainly by young adults and teenagers in Bulgaria. It’s obvious that the filler word мен is the transliteration of the English filler “man,” which probably entered the Bulgarian vernacular via American movies. Both fillers are used to address the interlocutor.
* Note that the filler word мен should not be confused with the personal pronoun мен.* Note also that there are regional variations with the same semantic meaning. For example, people in Sofia could use the filler word брат (“bro” / “brother”), while people in Plovdiv prefer the expression майна (“dude”).

Човек, да знаеш какво ми се случи вчера! Chovek, da znaesh kakvo mi se sluchi vchera!“Man, you know what happened to me yesterday!”
Вървя си по пътя, мен, и изведнъж чувам познат глас зад мен. Varvya si po patya, men, i izvednazh chuvam poznat glas zad men.“I’m walking down the road, man, and suddenly I hear a familiar voice behind me.”

#10

BulgarianLiterallyEnglish Equivalent
В смисъл / тоест… (V smisal / toest…)“I mean…” / “In other words…”

These Bulgarian filler words are similar to всъщност and фактически. They’re used to make something more clear, but when they’re used too often, it can become irritating for the listener.

A:Трябва да започнете да учите повече! Tryabva da zapochnete da uchite poveche!“You have to study more!”
B:В смисъл? V smisal?“What do you mean?”
A:В смисъл, че ви предстоят изпити. V smisal, che vi predstoyat izpiti.“I mean that you will have to take exams soon.”

Вчера излизам от вкъщи, тоест не на разходка, а до магазина и разбирам, че парите не са в мен. Vchera izlizam ot vkashti, toest ne na razhodka, a do magazina i razbiram, che parite ne sa v men.“Yesterday I left my house, i.e. not for a walk, but to go to the store, and I found out that the money is not with me.”
You Have to Study More!
  • BulgarianPod101 can help you prepare for your approaching Bulgarian proficiency exam with thousands of useful lessons.

Bonus Filler Word

BulgarianLiterallyEnglish Equivalent
такова… (takova…)“this” / “that”

We present here the most universal Bulgarian filler word you’ll hear in your conversations with Bulgarians. Locals can use this filler in place of any word they’re struggling to remember.

In place of a noun
Трябва ми такова… сол. Tryabva mi takova… sol.“I need that… salt.”
In place of a verb
Излизам да таковам… да играя. Izlizam da takovam… da igraya.“I go out to do this… to play.”
* Note that when it replaces a verb, this filler word follows the rules of verb conjugation.
In place of an adjective
Тя е толкова такава… хитра. Tya e tolkova takava… hitra.“She is so this… cunning.”
* Note that when it replaces an adjective, this filler word declines differently depending on the gender of the noun.

3. Filler Words in Business Jargon

It’s interesting to note that some of the filler words in spoken Bulgarian have been influenced by the business jargon. We’ve already described two of them: всъщност and фактически, which are equivalent in meaning.

Bulgarian business jargon contains business or technical terms as well as foreign words. Some more examples of Bulgarian filler words taken from business jargon include:

#1

BulgarianLiterallyEnglish Equivalent
Буквално… (Bukvalno…)“Literally…”“Literally…”

Това буквално означава да се преместиш в друга държава. Tova bukvalno oznachava da se premestish v druga darzhava.“This literally means moving to another country.”

#2

BulgarianLiterallyEnglish Equivalent
Така да се каже… (Taka da se kazhe…)“So to speak…”“So to speak…”

Налага се, така да се каже, да направим голяма промяна. Nalaga se, taka da se kazhe, da napravim golyama promyana.“We have to make a big change, so to speak.”

#3

BulgarianLiterallyEnglish Equivalent
Практически… (Prakticheski…)“Practically…”“Practically…”

Той е практически навсякъде. Toy e prakticheski navsyakade.“He is practically everywhere.”
He Is Practically Everywhere.

BulgarianPod101 will help you sound like a native Bulgarian speaker with the following list of essential idioms.

4. Cons of Filler Words

While using the occasional filler in Bulgarian can help you buy time to organize your thoughts, they can easily become a bad habit. Filler words add no value to a sentence, and they also make speech or writing more difficult to understand by interrupting its flow.

If you find yourself using fillers unintentionally, it’s a good idea to learn how to limit their use in your everyday life. Which brings us to our next section…

Filler Words Irritate Listeners

5. How to Get Rid of Filler Words in Your Speech

When using filler words becomes a habit, it’s difficult (but not impossible) to stop. Just don’t give up! There are some techniques that can help:

  • Record yourself speaking: Listen to your speech to find out how many filler words you use and try to make another recording without them. This practical exercise has to be repeated often to remove the bad habit, especially if you’re planning to speak with a really important person.
  • Don’t speak too much: Try to form your thoughts with fewer words than usual. It’s more important to speak clearly and get to the point.
  • Keep silent for a few seconds: It’s better to make a pause in speech while thinking than to fill the time with unnecessary expressions.

Make a jar or bottle for fines: Put a coin inside every time you catch yourself using a filler word. This will motivate you to use them less often.

Jar for Fines

Feeling ambitious now? BulgarianPod101 encourages you to try out the following list of language learning goals for the month.

6. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn the Bulgarian Language

We hope that this Bulgarian conversation filler words overview will help you recognize and understand fillers in your conversations with Bulgarians. 

It’s a good idea to get familiar with this Bulgarian filler words list so that you can sound more like a native speaker and better understand conversations. If you would like to advance your Bulgarian language knowledge and practice with a private Bulgarian teacher, you can take advantage of BulgarianPod101’s  MyTeacher service for Premium PLUS members. 

We’ll be glad to hear your feedback about this article. Please don’t hesitate to share your thoughts with us in the comments!

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Bulgarian Love Phrases: Say “I Love You,” in Bulgarian

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Maybe you remember that old Beatles song All You Need is Love.

It seems to be true, because every single person—from little babies to old men or women—needs to love and be loved by someone. But while giving and receiving love is important, so is knowing how to express that love. Doing this properly can work miracles in your life. 

Does your potential love interest or spouse happen to be a native Bulgarian speaker? Then you’re in the right place! 

In this detailed overview of how to say “I love you,” in Bulgarian, we’ll help you express your true feelings in your partner’s mother tongue. Whether your goal is to make an attractive Bulgarian fall in love with you or to strengthen the bond you have with your partner, these Bulgarian phrases about love will help you navigate through each phase of your relationship. 

The best part? Learning love phrases in Bulgarian is just the beginning. Having a boyfriend or girlfriend who speaks the language might inspire you to continue your studies! And having a romantic partner to practice with can make the experience that much more exciting and fulfilling. 

What are you waiting for? It’s time to sweep your partner off their feet! 

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Bulgarian Table of Contents
  1. Confess Your Affection: Pick-up Lines and More
  2. Fall in Deeper: “I Love You,” and More
  3. Take it One Step Further: “Will You Marry Me?” and More
  4. Endearment Terms
  5. Must-know Love Quotes
  6. Building a Love Dialogue
  7. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn the Bulgarian Language

1. Confess Your Affection: Pick-up Lines and More

The first thing you need to know is how to confess your affection. In this chapter, we’ll give you tips and phrases to help you…

  • …introduce yourself in Bulgarian.
  • …invite your love interest on a first date.
  • …make a good impression on your date.
  • …give a compliment to show them you really care.

Invite Him/Her on a First Date

Let’s start with the basics: 

  • Здравей, как се казваш?
    Zdravey, kak se kazvash?
    Hello, what’s your name?
  • Казвам се Джон и съм от Англия.
    Kazvam se John i sam ot Angliya.
    My name is John and I’m from England.

In the phrase above, you can replace John and England with your own name and home country. Need some help? You can probably find the Bulgarian name of your country in our World Countries vocabulary list.

Next, ask him or her what they do for a living.

  • Какво работиш?
    Kakvo rabotish?
    What’s your job?

Now, you can tell him/her about your occupation. Here’s an example:

  • Аз съм учител/ка по английски.
    Az sam uchitel/ka po angliyski.
    I am an English teacher.

Simply replace English teacher with your own profession. You can find a list of 20 Common Bulgarian Words for Occupations on BulgarianPod101.com. 

Another good question to ask is:

  • Какво обичаш да правиш в свободното си време?
    Kakvo obichash da pravish v svobodnoto si vreme?
    What do you like to do in your free time?

To answer this question yourself, you can say: Обичам да + your hobby. For example:

  • Обичам да се разхождам в парка.
    Obicham da se razhozhdam v parka.
    I like walking in the park.

In this case, you might find our list of Bulgarian Vocabulary for Hobbies very helpful! 

I Like Walking in the Park.

It’s time to become more direct. Let’s try this:

  • Мога ли да те поканя на среща?
    Moga li da te pokanya na sreshta?
    Can I invite you on a date?

We believe that the answer you’ll get will be:

  • Разбира се, с удоволствие!
    Razbira se, s udovolstvie!
    Of course, with pleasure!

Now, don’t forget to give some Bulgarian compliments to show you’re really interested in this relationship. 

  • Изглеждаш прекрасно!
    Izglezhdash prekrasno!
    You look great!
  • Толкова си красива! (for a woman)
    Tolkova si krasiva!
    You are so beautiful!

You can choose from this list of the Top 15 Bulgarian Compliments You Always Want to Hear to surprise your new Bulgarian friend.

Sending a reminder about the date via text or email

To make sure that the person you’ve invited didn’t forget about the date, you can send them a short reminder in a text or email. Here’s a sample reminder you could use:

  • Здравей, как си? Днес ще те чакам в 18 ч.
    Zdravey, kak si? Dnes shte te chakam v 18 chasa.
    Hello, how are you? Today, I will be waiting for you at 6 p.m.

If you would like to be more romantic, you could send the following:

  • Здравей, не спирам да мисля за нашата среща. Нямам търпение да се срещнем! До 18 ч.
    Zdravey, ne spiram da mislya za nashata sreshta. Nyamam tarpenie da se sreshtnem! Do 18 chasa.
    Hi, I keep thinking about our meeting. I can’t wait to meet you! Until 6 p.m.

2. Fall in Deeper: “I Love You,” and More

Falling in Love!

Learning how to say “I love you,” in the Bulgarian language will be a huge step forward in your relationship. As you fall more deeply in love with someone, you begin to experience an array of emotions. While it would be impossible to include phrases for every feeling you might have, we’ve listed several romantic phrases in Bulgarian that you can use to express your love and continued interest. 

  • Много ми харесваш!
    Mnogo mi haresvash!
    I like you very much!
  • Какви прекрасни очи имаш!
    Kakvi prekrasni ochi imash!
    What beautiful eyes you have!
  • Обичам те!
    Obicham te!
    I love you!
  • Мога ли да те целуна?
    Moga li da te tseluna?
    Can I kiss you?
  • Липсваше ми!
    Lipsvashe mi!
    I missed you!
  • Не мога без теб!
    Ne moga bez teb!
    I cannot live without you!

3. Take it One Step Further: “Will You Marry Me?” and More

A romantic relationship may become so strong that both parties desire to get married. This is an important step in life that one should consider before leaping ahead…but if you believe that you’re on the right track and that this is the person you’d like to bind your destiny to, here are the phrases you need to learn:

  • Искам децата ми да приличат на теб!
    Iskam detsata mi da prilichat na teb!
    I want my children to look like you!
  • Искам да остареем заедно!
    Iskam da ostareem zaedno!
    I want us to grow old together!

This is when a man might make his marriage proposal:

  • Ще се омъжиш ли за мен?
    Shte se omazhish li za men?
    Will you marry me?

Or, if the woman proposes to the man: 

  • Ще се ожениш ли за мен?
    Shte se ozhenish li za men?
    Will you marry me?
  • Нека създадем нашето общо бъдеще!
    Neka sazdadem nasheto obshto badeshte!
    Let’s create our common future!

Will You Marry Me?

4. Endearment Terms

All around the world, couples tend to address each other with cute pet names or terms of endearment. There are several common endearment terms in Bulgarian, some quite romantic and others more lighthearted. See our lists below to learn the pronunciation of “my love” in Bulgarian and many other Bulgarian terms of endearment. 

Classic endearment terms

  • Скъпи (Skapi) – Honey [for a man]
  • Скъпа (Skapa) – Honey [for a woman]
  • Любими (Lyubimi) – Darling [for a man]
  • Любима (Lyubima) – Darling [for a woman]
  • Мили (Mili) – Dear
  • Мила (Mila) – Dear
  • Любов моя (Lyubov moya) – My love
  • Обич моя (Obich moya) – My love
  • Щастие мое (Shtastie moe) – My happiness
  • Съкровище (Sakrovishte) – Treasure
  • Принцесо (Printseso) – Princess [for a woman]
  • Бебче (Bebche) – Baby

Animal-based endearment terms

  • Зайче (Zayche) – Bunny
  • Слонче (Slonche) – Diminutive for “elephant”
  • Коте (Kote) – Kitten
  • Писе (Pise) – Kitty
  • Жабчо (Zhabcho) – Diminutive for “frog”

How Are You Today, My Little Frog?

Bird-based endearment terms

  • Славейче (Slaveyche) – Diminutive for “nightingale”
  • Пиленце (Pilentse) – Chick
  • Пате (Pate) – Duckling
  • Гълъбче (Galabche) – Diminutive for “dove”

Nature-based endearment terms

  • Слънчице (Slanchitse) – Little sun
  • Звездичке (Zvezdichke) – Little star
  • Ягодке (Yagodke) – Little strawberry

Sweets-based endearment terms

  • Захарче (Zaharche) – Sugar
  • Бонбонче (Bonbonche) – Sweetie
  • Шоколадче (Shokoladche) – Chocolate
  • Сладкишче (Sladkishche) – Cake
  • Бухтичке (Buhtichke) – Cruller

While we’re still on the topic of sweets, you might be interested in checking out the following list of Bulgarian vocabulary for meals.

I Love You, My Sweetie!

5. Must-know Love Quotes

Much has been said about love and romance over the centuries. What better way to spice up your relationship than by reciting some popular love quotes in Bulgarian to your partner?

If you’ve chosen to call your favorite person Шоколадче (Shokoladche), or “Chocolate,” then you might be interested in the following love quote from Charles Schultz:

  • Всичко, от което се нуждаем, е любов. Но малко шоколад не е излишен.
    Vsichko, ot koeto se nuzhdaem, e lyubov. No malko shokolad ne e izlishen.
    All we need is love. But a little chocolate is not superfluous.

And here’s a must-know love quote by the famous Mahatma Gandhi:

  • Там, където има любов, има живот.
    Tam, kadeto ima lyubov, ima zhivot.
    Where there is love, there is life.

Another love quote is from Martin Luther King, Jr.:

  • Реших, че ще избера любовта. Омразата е твърде тежък товар, за да го нося.
    Reshih, che shte izbera lyubovta. Omrazata e tvarde tezhak tovar, za da go nosya.
    I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.

Love Quotes

6. Building a Love Dialogue

Now, let’s build a sample dialogue using some of the Bulgarian love expressions we described above.

    Здравей, любов моя! Как си? Липсвашe ми!
       Zdravey, lyubov moya! Kak si? Lipsvashe mi!
       Hello, my love! How are you? I missed you!
    И ти ми липсваше! Постоянно мисля за теб!
       I ti mi lipsvashe! Postoyanno mislya za teb!
       I missed you, too! I think about you all the time!
    Мога ли да те целуна?
       Moga li da te tseluna?
       Can I kiss you?
    Разбира се!
       Razbira se!
       Of course!
    Какви прекрасни очи имаш!
       Kakvi prekrasni ochi imash!
       What beautiful eyes you have!
    Благодаря ти! Обичам те!
       Blagodarya ti! Obicham te!
       Thank you! I love you!
    Ще се омъжиш ли за мен? Нека създадем нашето общо бъдеще!
       Shte se omazhish li za men? Neka sazdadem nasheto obshto badeshte!
       Will you marry me? Let’s create our common future!
    Да! Не мога без теб!
       Da, ne moga bez teb!
       Yes! I cannot live without you!

Hе мога без теб is also the name of a popular Bulgarian love song you might want to listen to.

Love Dialogue

7. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn the Bulgarian Language

We hope that we made your day brighter with this overview of Bulgarian love phrases. Now, you can say “I love you,” in Bulgarian and build a deeper love dialogue with your Bulgarian partner. And trust us: He or she will definitely appreciate your efforts! 

BulgarianPod101 aims to help you overcome any language barrier, even in your love life!

We provide tons of practical lessons on the Bulgarian language and culture, as well as specially tailored learning pathways to help you reach your specific goals faster. If you need a more personal approach and extra guidance, you can upgrade to a Premium PLUS subscription to take advantage of our MyTeacher service. Your own personal teacher will help you learn the right vocabulary for any situation—even for asking that lucky man or woman out on a date. 😉 

With our lessons and guidance, you’ll gain the confidence you need to win the heart of your beloved. 

We would love to hear from you! Please don’t hesitate to share your thoughts with us in the comments, and let us know which romantic phrases in Bulgarian you found most helpful.

Until next time, happy learning. We’re wishing you success in your love life!

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Learn About Negation in Bulgarian

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Negation is a linguistic tool we use every day. From refusing proposals to answering questions in the negative, there are so many ways we use the word “no” in our daily conversations and social engagements. After all, we can’t possibly agree on everything all the time! 

Learning about negation in Bulgarian grammar is a key element in mastering the language, and we recommend that you study this early on. 

Here are some reasons why it’s good to learn how to say no in Bulgarian:

  • You’ll be able to express an opposite opinion.
  • You can react negatively when someone speaks untruthfully.
  • You can disagree with any offensive declaration. 
  • You can express to others your inability to do something.
  • You can state that something never happened.

BulgarianPod101 has prepared this Bulgarian negation overview to guide you through this complex topic. You’ll learn how to form negative sentences in Bulgarian, how to say no, how to answer questions in the negative, and more.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Bulgarian Table of Contents
  1. Negate a Statement
  2. Making Negative Sentences with the Verb “To Bе”
  3. Giving a Negative Response to a Question
  4. Other Negating Words and Phrases
  5. Double Negatives
  6. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn Bulgarian
  7. Answers to the Practical Exercises

1. Negate a Statement

Let’s start by learning how to negate a positive statement in Bulgarian. For your convenience, we’ve also included some practical exercises to help you get the hang of it! 

Here are the positive statements:

  • Аз съм американец. / Ние сме американци.
    (Az sam amerikanets. / Nie sme amerikantsi.)
    I am an American. / We are Americans.
  • Аз уча български, защото смятам да пътувам за България.
    (Az ucha balgarski, zashtoto smyatam da patuvam za Balgariya.)
    I study Bulgarian because I plan to travel to Bulgaria.
I Study Bulgarian because I Plan to Travel to Bulgaria.

To make these positive statements negative in the simple present tense, we have to add the negative particleне” in front of the verb. The negative versions of these sentences look like this:

  • Аз не съм американец. / Ние не сме американци.
    (Az sam amerikanets. / Nie sme amerikantsi.)
    I am not an American. / We are not Americans.
  • Аз не уча български, защото не смятам да пътувам за България.
    (Az ne ucha balgarski, zashtoto ne smyatam da patuvam za Balgariya.)
    I don’t study Bulgarian because I do not plan to travel to Bulgaria.

Learning Bulgarian vocabulary for nationalities is not an easy thing. To help you out, here’s a list of 35 nationalities and how they’re pronounced in Bulgarian.

Practical exercise: Making affirmative statements negative in the simple present tense

It seems simple, right? Just figure out where the verb is located and put the negative particle before it. Now, practice negation in Bulgarian yourself with the following sentences: 

  • Аз обичам да ходя на ресторант.
    (Az obicham da hodya na restorant.)
    I like going to restaurants.
  • Тя живее в къща.
    (Tya zhivee v kashta.)
    She lives in a house.
  • Те работят в тази фирма.
    (Te rabotyat v tazi firma.)
    They work for this company.

You can check your answers at the end of this article.

Negate a statement in the future tense

When the statement you would like to negate is in the future tense, a different negative particle is used instead of “не.” In this case, the negative particle “няма да” (nyama da), meaning “won’t,” should replace the Bulgarian future tense particle “ще” (shte), meaning “will.” 

Let’s make it more clear by providing an example. Locate the particle “ще” first.

  • Когато науча български, ще се върна в Америка.
    (Kogato naucha balgarski, shte se varna v Amerika.)
    When I learn Bulgarian, I will return to America.

Now let’s replace the particle “ще” with the negative particle “няма да.”

  • Когато науча български, няма да се върна в Америка.
    (Kogato naucha balgarski, nyama da se varna v Amerika.)
    When I learn Bulgarian, I will not return to America.

By the way, BulgarianPod101 can help you start using the future tense to make plans and appointments in this lesson.

Practical exercise: Negate a statement in the future tense

Now, it’s your turn to make a negative statement in the future tense. Try the following sentences:

  • Утре ще ходя на ресторант.
    (Utre shte hodya na restorant.)
    I’m going to a restaurant tomorrow.
  • Тя ще живее в тази къща.
    (Tya shte zhivee v tazi kashta.)
    She will live in this house.
  • Те ще работят в тази фирма.
    (Te shte rabotyat v tazi firma.)
    They will work for this company.

You can check your answers at the end of this article.

I'm Going to a Restaurant Tomorrow.

2. Making Negative Sentences with the Verb “To Bе”

When building Bulgarian negation sentences with the verb съм (sam), you need to follow the same principle as with the other verbs: The negative particle “не” should be placed in front of the verb съм

Let’s start with affirmative examples. We’ll provide two versions of each sentence (for masculine and feminine gender, respectively) in the first person singular:

masculinefeminine 
Аз съм българин. 
(Az sam balgarin.)
I am Bulgarian.
Аз съм българка. 
(Az sam balgarка.)
I am Bulgarian.
Аз съм тъжен.
(Az sam tazhen.)
I am sad.
Аз съм тъжна. 
(Az sam tazhnа.)
I am sad.
Ние сме млади.
(Nie sme mladi.)
We are young.

Now, let’s make these sentences negative. Note that, in contrast to the English language where the negative particle not is placed after the verb “to be,” the particle не comes before the verb “to be” in Bulgarian. 

masculinefeminine 
Аз не съм българин.
(Az ne sam balgarin.)
I am not Bulgarian.
Аз не съм българка.
(Az ne sam balgarка.)
I am not Bulgarian.
Аз не съм тъжен.
(Az ne sam tazhen.)
I am not sad.
Аз не съм тъжна.
(Az ne sam tazhnа.)
I am not sad.
Ние не сме млади.
(Nie ne sme mladi.)
We are not young.

We Are Not Young, but We Are Young at Heart.

Practical exercise: Making negative sentences with the verb “to bе”

Ready to practice this essential skill? Each of these sentences contains a conjugated form of the verb “to be.” Try to make them negative! 

  • Колата е бърза.
    (Kolata e barza.)
    The car is fast.
  • Времето е хубаво.
    (Vremeto e hubavo.)
    The weather is nice.
  • Хората са добри.
    (Horata sa dobri.)
    People are good.
  • Те са мълчаливи днес.
    (Te sa malchalivi dnes.)
    They are silent today.

You can check your answers at the end of this article.

3. Giving a Negative Response to a Question

It’s time to learn how to give negative answers to questions that others ask you. Here are three examples, each one for a different scenario: 

With a possessive pronoun

    – Този телефон твой ли е?
       (Tozi telefon tvoy li e?)
       Is this phone yours?
    – Не, не е мой.
       (Ne, ne e moy.)
       No, it’s not mine.

With the verb to be

    – Ти от Бразилия ли си?
       (Ti ot Braziliya li si?)
       Are you from Brazil?
    – Не, не съм от Бразилия.
       (Ne, ne sam ot Braziliya.)
       No, I’m not from Brazil.

With a common verb 

    – Ти обичаш ли ме?
       (Ti obichash li me?)
       Do you love me?
    – Не, не те обичам.
       (Ne, ne te obicham.)
       No, I don’t love you.
Do You Love Me?

Practical exercise: Giving a negative response to a question

Your next task is to answer the following questions negatively. 

  • Ти помагаш ли му?
    (Ti pomagash li mu?)
    Are you helping him?
  • Ти учиш ли?
    (Ti uchish li?)
    Do you study?
  • Ти знаеш ли това?
    (Ti znaesh li tova?)
    Do you know that?
  • Ти млад ли си?
    (Ti mlad li si?)
    Are you young?

A hint: Follow the last example (With a common verb) from above to answer the first three questions and the second example (With the verb to be) for the last one. You can check whether your answers are correct at the end of this article.

    One more task:

Alter the following question for the feminine gender and answer it negatively, too:

  • Ти млад ли си?
    (Ti mlad li si?)
    Are you young?

4. Other Negating Words and Phrases

In addition to Bulgarian negative particles, there are some other negating words that make sentences negative. It’s interesting to note that these words have to be used in combination with the negative particle “не” in order to build a grammatically correct negative sentence.

BulgarianEnglish
нищо (nishto) – should be used with “неnothing
никой (nikoy) – should be used with “неnobody 
никога (nikoga) – should be used with “неnever
не мога (ne mogaI cannot
не трябва (ne tryabva)should not / must not

Examples:

  • Нищо не ми трябва.
    (Nishto ne mi tryabva.)
    I don’t need anything.
  • Никой не идва.
    (Nikoy ne idva.)
    Nobody is coming.
  • Никога не закъснявам.
    (Nikoga ne zakasnyavam.)
    I’m never late.
  • Аз не мога да дойда на работа днес.
    (Az ne moga da doyda na rabota dnes.)
    I can’t come to work today.
  • Не трябва да работя много.
    (Ne tryabva da rabotya mnogo.)
    I don’t have to work hard.

Practical exercise: Negating words and phrases

Make the following sentences negative in Bulgarian by adding the negative words in parentheses to them. Hint: Don’t forget to add the negative particle не.

  • Разбирам. (add нищо)
    (Razbiram.)
    I understand.
  • Говоря с непознати. (add никога)
    (Govorya s nepoznati.)
    I’m talking to strangers.
  • Чува какво говоря. (add никой)
    (Chuva kakvo govorya.)
    He hears what I’m saying.

5. Double Negatives

Double Negatives

Double negatives are typical in the Bulgarian language. As we saw in the previous section, the negative pronouns (like никой) can only be used with the negative form of the verb.

  • Никой престъпник не остава ненаказан.
    (Nikoy prestapnik ne ostava nenakazan.)
    No criminal goes unpunished.

In the sentence above, the Bulgarian negative pronoun (никой) is equivalent to the English word “no.”

  • Нищо не виждам в тъмното.
    (Nishto ne vizhdam v tamnoto.)
    I don’t see anything in the dark.
  • Не приемам никакви предложения.
    (Ne priemam nikakvi predlozheniya.)
    I do not accept any suggestions.

6. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn Bulgarian

BulgarianPod101 has prepared this overview of Bulgarian negation to help you better understand how it works so you can start using it in your daily conversations with Bulgarians. We believe that this explanation and the exercises we provided can help you quickly overcome the language barrier and start speaking freely.

If you feel like you need some additional help for that, you can check out our MyTeacher service, which allows you to study and practice with your own personal Bulgarian tutor. He or she can help give you the confidence you need to start speaking Bulgarian on your own. 

Before you go: Did you find these practical exercises challenging? What exactly did you find most challenging about them? We would love to hear from you, so please share your thoughts in the comments below. 

And now, it’s time to check your answers!

7. Answers to the Practical Exercises


Answers to practical exercise: Making affirmative statements negative

  • Аз не обичам да ходя на ресторант.
    (Az ne obicham da hodya na restorant.)
    I don’t like going to restaurants.
  • Тя не живее в къща.
    (Tya ne zhivee v kashta.)
    She doesn’t live in a house.
  • Те не работят в тази фирма.
    (Te ne rabotyat v tazi firma.)
    They don’t work for this company.

Answers to practical exercise: Negate a statement in the future tense

  • Утре няма да ходя на ресторант.
    (Utre nyama da hodya na restorant.)
    I’m not going to a restaurant tomorrow.
  • Тя няма да живее в тази къща.
    (Tya nyama da zhivee v tazi kashta.)
    She will not live in this house.
  • Те няма да работят в тази фирма.
    (Te nyama da rabotyat v tazi firma.)
    They will not work for this company.

Answers to practical exercise: Making negative sentences with the verb “to bе”

  • Колата не е бърза.
    (Kolata ne e barza.)
    The car is not fast.
  • Времето не е хубаво.
    (Vremeto ne e hubavo.)
    The weather is not nice.
  • Хората не са добри.
    (Horata ne sa dobri.)
    People are not good.
  • Те не са мълчаливи днес.
    (Te ne sa malchalivi dnes.)
    They are not silent today.

Answers to practical exercise: Giving a negative response to a question

  • Ти помагаш ли му?
    (Ti pomagash li mu?)
    Are you helping him?
    – Не, не му помагам.
       (Ne, ne mu pomagam.)
       No, I’m not helping him.
  • Ти учиш ли?
    (Ti uchish li?)
    Do you study?
    – Не, не уча.
       (Ne, ne ucha.)
       No, I’m not studying.
  • Ти знаеш ли това?
    (Ti znaesh li tova?)
    Do you know that?
    – Не, не зная това.
       (Ne, ne znaya tova.)
       No, I don’t know that.
  • Ти млад ли си?
    (Ti mlad li si?)
    Are you young?
    – Не, не съм млад.
       (Ne, ne sam mlad.)
       No, I’m not young.

    One more task:

masculinefeminine 
Ти млад ли си?
(Ti mlad li si?)
Are you young?
Ти млада ли си?
(Ti mladа li si?)
Are you young?
Не, не съм млад.
(Ne, ne sam mlad.)
No, I’m not young.
Не, не съм млада.
(Ne, ne sam mlada.)
No, I’m not young.

Answers to practical exercise: Negating words and phrases

  • Нищо не разбирам.
    (Nishto ne razbiram.)
    I do not understand anything.
  • Никога не говоря с непознати.
    (Nikoga ne govorya s nepoznati.)
    I never talk to strangers.
  • Никой не чува какво говоря.
    (Nikoy ne chuva kakvo govorya.)
    Nobody hears what I’m saying.
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Why learn Bulgarian? Here are 10 great reasons.

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Have you ever thought of learning Bulgarian as an impossible task? Or maybe you’re thinking about studying the language, but want to make sure it’s actually worth the effort?

Well, BulgarianPod101 is here to encourage you and assure you that it’s both possible and beneficial to study Bulgarian. All it takes is some regular and purposeful effort on your part, and you can begin to reap the numerous advantages this knowledge will bring you. 

Today we’ll answer the question, “Why learn Bulgarian?” by outlining the top 10 reasons that knowing this language will benefit your life. 

Knowing why you should learn Bulgarian is important because…

    → …it can give you extra motivation to get through the harder periods of your language studies.
    → …you’ll realize that learning Bulgarian has multiple benefits and is worth your current efforts.
    → …if any of the reasons we list matches your goal, you’ll know that you’re on the right path toward reaching it successfully.
Learning the Bulgarian Language Doesn’t Have to be Boring!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Bulgarian Table of Contents
  1. Reason #1: Bulgaria has a rich culture and history.
  2. Reason #2: Knowing the Bulgarian language will help you understand other Slavic languages.
  3. Reason #3: You’ll be able to make friends with Bulgarians.
  4. Reason #4: Language learning improves overall brain health.
  5. Reason #5: You’ll get better acquainted with the Bulgarian cuisine.
  6. Reason #6: Knowing Bulgarian will bring you more business opportunities.
  7. Reason #7: You can use your language skills to impress a Bulgarian spouse or partner.
  8. Reason #8: You’ll have better travel experiences.
  9. Reason #9: There will be more opportunities to live in rural Bulgaria.
  10. Reason #10: It has never been easier to learn Bulgarian!
  11. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn Bulgarian

Reason #1: Bulgaria has a rich culture and history.

Tsarevets Fortress, Bulgaria

Learning the Bulgarian language presents a great opportunity for learners to get acquainted with the unique culture and people of Bulgaria. And let us tell you: Bulgaria has a rich and exciting history! 

Bulgarian history dates back to at least 1500 BC, when the ancient Thracians inhabited this land. The Thracians were later followed by the Romans and the Greeks. 

The following migration of the Slavs and Bulgars played an important role in forming the Old Great Bulgaria, and later, the First Bulgarian Empire in 681 AD. This empire lasted until 1018, when the Byzantine Empire occupied its territory. After Bulgaria was liberated in 1185, the Second Bulgarian Empire was formed, which succeeded in making the nation great again. 

Unfortunately, it lasted for only two centuries and Bulgaria was occupied again in 1396—this time by the Ottomans. The Ottoman yoke lasted for five long centuries before the country was liberated in 1878 by the Russian army, which helped Bulgarian patriots after the failure of the April Uprising in 1876. After the liberation of Bulgaria, the beginning of the Third Bulgarian State started.

There are multiple artifacts that speak of the mix of cultures, nations, and tribes that once lived in this land. In fact, they serve as a Holy Grail of sorts for today’s archaeologists, paleontologists, and the scientific community as a whole. Some examples of artifacts include:

  • Ancient churches
  • Fortresses
  • Tombs
  • Roman baths
  • Parts of walls
  • Stadiums
  • Ancient theatres 

In addition, Bulgaria features nine attractions that are included on the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Reason #2: Knowing the Bulgarian language will help you understand other Slavic languages.

Bulgarian is part of the Slavic language family, namely its southern branch, which also includes the following languages: 

  • Serbian
  • Macedonian
  • Slovenian
  • Bosnian

Knowing Bulgarian will give you a key that allows you to access all of these languages. In other words: If you understand Bulgarian, you’ll have a much easier time learning languages of the same branch.

Of course, knowing either Bulgarian or one of the other Slavic languages will make your travel experiences much smoother and more fulfilling. Skills in one of these languages will allow you to visit Bulgaria, the Balkans, and even one of the following countries that have large groups of Bulgarian speakers:

  • Turkey
  • Kosovo
  • Moldova
  • Romania
  • Greece
  • Serbia
  • Albania
  • Ukraine
  • Macedonia 

Some other countries with fairly large Bulgarian-speaking groups are Spain, the United States, Italy, Germany, the United Kingdom, and Canada.

Slavic People

Reason #3: You’ll be able to make friends with Bulgarians.

One of the most exciting perks of learning a foreign language is the ability to communicate with and befriend the local people. This is also a great way to immerse yourself even deeper into their culture.

The more phrases you learn, the easier it will be to communicate with Bulgarian people. Although many Bulgarians (especially the younger generations) speak English fluently, speaking to them in their own language will make it easier to form strong, meaningful bonds with them. On the other hand, having Bulgarian friends is a great opportunity to practice your speaking and listening skills in real life!

Making Friends with Bulgarians
    → BulgarianPod101 provides you with a list of the top 15 Bulgarian questions to know for your future conversations with Bulgarians. Check it out for some inspiration!

Reason #4: Language learning improves overall brain health.

Mastering a second or third language is advantageous for your brain health and function. So while learning a foreign language is both fun and fascinating, it’s also worth the effort in terms of the mental benefits you’ll gain. These include: 

  • An enhanced memory 
  • A stronger ability to make connections
  • Better problem-solving skills 

Language learning is a challenge that’s certainly good for the brain!

Language Learning Is a Great Mental Exercise

Reason #5: You’ll get better acquainted with the Bulgarian cuisine.

Bulgaria is known for the longevity of its people. Research shows that one of the reasons Bulgarians tend to live so long is their regular consumption of Bulgarian yogurt, especially the homemade kind. 

Tourists can try authentic Bulgarian yogurt (and plenty of other traditional dishes) when they visit the more rural areas of Bulgaria. That said, most people living in these areas do not know English, so communicating with them would be difficult without knowing at least a little Bulgarian. 

If you visit these places during a national holiday, you might even be invited into their homes for a dinner, as Bulgarian villagers are very hospitable and open to foreigners. Knowing Bulgarian will make this a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience!

Try the Delicious Bulgarian Cuisine

Reason #6: Knowing Bulgarian will bring you more business opportunities.

Thanks to the rapid economic growth in Bulgaria and the country’s status as an increasingly attractive tourist destination, the country has become a hub for multiple business opportunities. The business potential in this country is huge, with job and investment potential in numerous sectors including: 

  • The IT field
  • Tourism
  • Education
  • Real estate
  • New business development

These conditions and opportunities provide favorable conditions for multiple business industries, including eco products and manufacturing.

Bulgarian and foreign investors gather annually at the special trading fairs and meetings that allow them to enhance their field of influence while meeting new partners and prospects. Even though English is spoken widely at such events, foreigners who speak Bulgarian have a clear advantage as they can better communicate with local business people.

    → In the following 15-minute video, you’ll learn some great business phrases that you might need during your meetings with Bulgarian business people:


Reason #7: You can use your language skills to impress a Bulgarian spouse or partner.

One of the sweetest reasons to learn Bulgarian is to impress your Bulgarian spouse or girlfriend/boyfriend. They’ll definitely appreciate your efforts and will double their support in helping you learn the language faster. The first phrase you should learn?

  • Обичам те!
    Obicham te!
    I love you!

Better still, being able to speak the language fluently will certainly impress your Bulgarian partner’s parents! Try a phrase like this, and see what happens:

  • Приятно ми е да се запознаем!
    Priyatno mi e da se zapoznaem!
    Nice to meet you!

And there is your key to winning their hearts.

Say I love You in Bulgarian to Your Favorite Person

Reason #8: You’ll have better travel experiences.

Learning some basic Bulgarian will enhance your travel experiences in the country. After all, you never know when you’ll need to ask someone for help! In these types of situations, you should definitely know at least the very basics, such as:

  • Къде е ресторантът?
    Kade e restorantat?
    Where is the restaurant?
  • Къде е тоалетната?
    Kade e toaletnata?
    Where is the toilet?
  • Къде е болницата?  
    Kade e bolnitsata?
    Where is the hospital?

In addition, there are some signs that are printed only in Bulgarian letters, so it’s good to know how to read the Bulgarian alphabet. This will be super-helpful when it comes to understanding directions.


Reason #9: There will be more opportunities to live in rural Bulgaria.

Rural Bulgarian Areas

Bulgarian villages have preserved ancient traditions and customs that cannot be seen in the big cities. In addition, these rural areas have an impressive combination of natural landscapes and clear air that can aid in stress reduction. Many foreigners visit these areas for at least a few days for the beautiful scenery and the emotional benefits it brings—some people even make the decision to live in these areas permanently! 

If this sounds like something you’d like to do yourself, knowing some Bulgarian will help you a lot when it comes to communicating with the locals. Bulgarian villagers are very warm-hearted and would gladly help you with whatever you need, but very few of them can speak other languages. For this reason, learning Bulgarian will be quite worth it!

Reason #10: It has never been easier to learn Bulgarian!

Have you come this far and are still wondering why to learn Bulgarian?

Well, thanks to modern technologies, it’s so much easier to learn the Bulgarian language now compared to a few decades ago. Imagine if there was no internet…no online tutorials, guides, educational materials, or teachers! We would have to go back to paper dictionaries and textbooks, with grammar explanations that take a long time to study. 

The Bulgarian language may not have changed much, but our available learning resources and methods have! 

Our present-day technologies allow you to learn new languages completely online, at your own pace, and using the methods that best suit you. BulgarianPod101, for example, provides a variety of free lessons and vocabulary lists that are designed to help you gradually improve your Bulgarian. We help you learn all five core elements (reading, writing, listening, speaking, conversation) simultaneously!

Of course, you can also supplement your learning nowadays through a variety of means that were not previously available, such as Bulgarian TV shows and YouTube channels.

11. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn Bulgarian

BulgarianPod101 prepared this review of the top 10 reasons to learn Bulgarian in order to motivate you in your language learning journey. We hope you’ll now be able to move forward with your Bulgarian studies with even greater confidence.

BulgarianPod101 App

If you’re ready to commit, create your free lifetime account with BulgarianPod101 and start learning real Bulgarian today. We also offer a great free app that allows you to take BulgarianPod101 with you wherever you go. This innovative app will give you access to hundreds of entertaining audio and video lessons taught by real Bulgarian teachers.

If you’d prefer to have a personal tutor who can explain everything in greater detail and help you advance even faster, you can upgrade to Premium PLUS and choose a professional from our MyTeacher service. With your teacher, you’ll be able to more easily understand all language specifics, including grammar rules (and exceptions), vocabulary, and pronunciation. 

Before you go: Did any of the reasons we listed inspire you to start learning, or are you still on the fence? Or maybe you have your own reason for learning that we didn’t mention! Let us know in the comments, because we always love to hear from you. 

Happy learning!

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Bulgarian Tenses Overview: Make the Hardest Part Easier

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Even if you have a solid vocabulary base, your communication is going to be quite limited unless you know how to use tenses. While they may seem intimidating, studying the Bulgarian tenses will open up a whole new world to you and fill your life with so many different possibilities. 

Just imagine: Being able to talk about the present, past, and future will allow you to tell your Bulgarian friend what you’re up to at the moment, what happened yesterday, or what your plans are for the future. 

In this detailed guide, BulgarianPod101 will cover all nine verb tenses in Bulgarian grammar and provide you with examples of how to use them. We know that tenses are probably the hardest part of learning a foreign language, so we’ve tried to make our guide as simple and useful as possible. 

Let’s get started.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Bulgarian Table of Contents
  1. Bulgarian Language Specifics
  2. Present Tense
  3. Past Tenses
  4. Future Tenses
  5. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn Bulgarian Tenses

1. Bulgarian Language Specifics

Before we delve into verb tenses in the Bulgarian language, let’s take a look at three of the essential specifics that distinguish Bulgarian from most other languages.

No infinitive form

Instead of infinitive verb forms like those found in English, Russian, and many other languages, the Bulgarian language has a basic verb form that is first person singular, present tense. This means that when you look for specific verbs in the dictionary, you’ll find their forms for first person:

  • говоря (govorya) – to talk / I talk
  • чета (cheta) – to read / I read
  • питам (pitam) – to ask / I ask
  • отговарям (otgovariam) – to answer / I answer
  • мисля (mislya) – to think / I think

Bulgarian verb conjugations

There are three verb conjugations in Bulgarian, categorized based on the stem form in third person singular, present tense. 

ConjugationStem vowelStem form (3rd pers., sing., present tense)Base form (1st pers., sing., present tense)
1st четечета
2ndговори, мислиговоря, мисля
3rd-а, -япита, отговаряпитам, отговарям

He Reads an Interesting Book

Examples:

1st Conjugation

  • Той чете интересна книга, а аз чета вестник.
    Toy chete interesna kniga, a az cheta vestnik.
    He reads an interesting book and I read a newspaper.

3rd Conjugation

  • Аз питам, а той отговаря.
    As pitam, a toy otgovarya.
    I ask, and he answers.

    Practical Exercise No. 1 – Conjugations

Determine the conjugation of the following words, placed in third person singular, present tense:

разбира (razbira), understands – Conjugation No. ____
знае (znae), knows – Conjugation No. ____
учи (uchi), studies – Conjugation No. ____
играе (razbira), plays – Conjugation No. ____
вярва (vyarva), believes – Conjugation No. ____
работи (raboti), works – Conjugation No. ____
мечтае (mechtae), dreams – Conjugation No. ____


    Practical Exercise No. 2 – Conjugations

Using the table from Bulgarian Verb Conjugations, try to translate the following sentence into Bulgarian:

                   She doesn’t speak, because she thinks a lot.

Bulgarian:

Bulgarian auxiliary verbs

The Bulgarian language features two auxiliary verbs: съм (sam) and ща (shta). Let’s take a closer look at each of them.

  • съм (sam) – to be

    This verb is widely used in constructing complex verb forms. съм and its derivatives (for the past and future tenses) play an important role in forming different tenses.

  • ща (shta) – to want

    This verb is used only for future tense forms. To form verbs in the future tense and the future perfect tense, its derivative ще (shtе), or “will,” should be used. Over time, this word has lost its meaning of “want to” and is now considered to be a particle meaning “will.”

    To form the other future tenses (Future in the Past & Future Perfect in the Past), which will be discussed below in detail, we need to use the aorist form of ща, which is щял (shtyal), meaning “would.”

Examples: 

    ➢ Аз съм учител.
        Az sam uchitel.
        I am a teacher. – Present Tense

    ➢ Като порасна, ще съм смел като татко.
        Kato porasna, shte sam smel kato tatko.
        When I grow up, I will be as brave as my daddy. – Future Tense

    ➢ Вчера бях у дома.
        Vchera byah u doma.
        Yesterday, I was at home. – Past Tense

I Am a Teacher.
    → BulgarianPod101 covers more important points related to Bulgarian grammar on our website!

2. Present Tense

It’s important to note that there is only one present tense in Bulgarian, which makes things easier. However, don’t forget that there are three conjugations in the Bulgarian language, so you’ll have to learn them in order to use the correct forms in the present tense. 

Here’s a comparison table with endings for all three Bulgarian present tense conjugations.

Personal pronouns1st Conjugation (the verb read)2nd Conjugation(the verb speak)3rd Conjugation(the verb ask)
азчета
(cheta)
говоря
(govorya)
питам
(pitam)
тичетеш
(chetesh)
говориш
(govorish)
питаш
(pitash)
той/тя/точете
(chete)
говори
(govori)
пита
(pita)
ние четем
(chetem)
говорим
(govorim)
питаме
(pitame)
виечетете
(chetete)
говорите
(govorite)
питате
(pitate)
течетат
(chetat)
говорят
(govoryat)
питат
(pitat)

    Practical Exercise No. 3 – Present Tense

Fill in all the forms of the following verbs in the present tense, based on their conjugation:

Personal pronounsразбирамзнаяучамечтаявярвамиграя
аз
ти
той/тя/то
ние 
вие
те

Helpful Tip: Refer to Practical Exercise No. 1 for the correct conjugations. Then, use the endings of the correct conjugation to make the missing forms. You can find the correct answers at the end of this guide.  

Uses of the Bulgarian Present Tense

Here are a few things to keep in mind when studying the Bulgarian present tense and its uses.

1. The present tense in Bulgarian is equivalent to the English present simple tense

Examples:

    ➢ Аз говоря български език.
        Az govorya balgarski ezik.
        I speak the Bulgarian language.

    ➢ Обичам да чета книги.
        Obicham da cheta knigi.
        I love reading books.

    ➢ Често си мисля за теб!
        Chesto si mislya za teb!
        I often think about you!

2. The Bulgarian present tense, just like the English present simple tense, can be used to express habitual activities.

Examples:

    ➢ Всеки ден уча български език.
        Vseki den ucha balgarski ezik.
        I study Bulgarian every day.

    Чета по една българска книга всяка седмица.
        Cheta po edna balgarska kniga vsyaka sedmitsa.
        I read one Bulgarian book every week.

3. The Bulgarian present tense can also express the English present continuous tense.

Examples:

    ➢ Не ме безпокой, защото в момента чета интересна книга.
        Ne me bezpokoy, zashtoto v momenta cheta interesna kniga.
        Don’t bother me, because I’m reading an interesting book right now.

    ➢ Не ме прекъсвай, докато говоря с други хора.
        Ne me prekasvay, dokato govorya s drugi hora.
        Don’t interrupt me while I’m talking to other people.

4. Just like the English present continuous tense, the Bulgarian present tense can also be used to tell others about future activities we have planned.

Examples:

    ➢ Вечерта пътувам за София.
        Vecherta patuvam za Sofiya.
        I am traveling to Sofia tonight.

    ➢ Утре пристигам в Бургас.
        Utre pristigam v Burgas.
        I am arriving in Burgas tomorrow.

5. The Bulgarian present tense can act as an equivalent to the English present perfect continuous tense to express habitual activities, when the specific activities began in the past and continue to the present moment.

Examples:

    ➢ От три години уча този език.
        Ot tri godini ucha tozi ezik.
        I have been studying this language for three years.

    ➢ От месец чета тази книга, но още не съм я завършил.
        Ot mesets cheta tazi kniga, no oshte ne sam ya zavarshil.
        I have been reading this book for a month, but I have not finished it yet.

6. The Bulgarian present tense can be used to express historical events. In this case, it is equivalent to the past simple tense in English.

    ➢ Кирил и Методий създават славянската азбука през IX век.
        Kiril i Metodiy sazdavat slavyanskata azbuka prez IX vek.
        In the IX century, Cyril and Methodius created the Slavic alphabet.

    ➢ След смъртта на цар Симеон Велики, на престола се качва синът му Петър.
        Sled smartta na tsar Simeon Veliki, na prestola se kachva sinat mu Petar.
        After the death of King Simeon the Great, his son Peter ascended the throne.

Learn Bulgarian Tenses to Sit on the Throne of Knowledge!

3. Past Tenses

There are four Bulgarian past tenses: 

1. the past simple tense (also called aorist)
2. the past continuous tense
3. минало неопределено време (minalo neopredeleno vreme), equivalent to the present perfect tense
4. минало предварително време (minalo predvaritelno vreme), equivalent to the past perfect tense

Past Simple Tense (Aorist)

Aorist describes actions that happened at a definite moment in the past, and it corresponds to the English past simple tense. It’s formed with the stem vowel , , , or (if it follows the consonant ж, ч, or ш). The specific verb endings for this tense are given in the table below:

Personal pronounsEndings for past simple tense
аз– х
ти
той/тя/то
ние -хме
вие-хте
те-ха

There’s no ending in the second or third person singular, which means that these forms will end in the stem vowel. 

Let’s make the past form of the verbs we already studied above:

  • говоря (govorya) – to talk / I talk
  • чета (cheta) – to read / I read
  • питам (pitam) – to ask / I ask
  • отговарям (otgovariam) – to answer / I answer
  • мисля (mislya) – to think / I think

Personal pronounsVerb with stem vowel * Verb with stem vowel Verb with stem vowel
азговорихчетохпитах
тиговоричетепита
той/тя/тоговоричетепита
ние говорихмечетохмепитахме
виеговорихтечетохтепитахте
теговорихачетохапитаха

* Note that the word чета (четох) belongs to a special class of 23 verbs. Their stems end in д, т, з, с, or к and their stem vowel could be or -e in the second and third persons singular. 

Examples:

    ➢ Вчера цял ден четох интересна книга.
        Vchera tsyal den chetoh interesna kniga.
        Yesterday, I read an interesting book all day.

    ➢ Те ни питаха какво да ни купят за подарък.
        Te ni pitaha kakvo da ni kupyat za podarak.
        They asked us what to buy us as a gift.

    ★ Practical Exercise No. 4 – Past Simple Tense

Fill in all the forms of the following verbs in the past simple tense, based on their stem vowel:

Personal pronounsVerb with stem vowel Verb with stem vowel Verb with stem vowel Verb with stem vowel
азмислихучихмечтахиграх
ти
той/тя/то
ние 
вие
те

Bonus exercise:

Try to form the past simple tense of the following verb, knowing that its stem vowel is :

  •  успях (uspyah) – I succeeded
Personal pronounsVerb with stem vowel
азуспях
ти
той/тя/то
ние 
вие
те
    ➢ Here’s an intriguing lesson from BulgarianPod101 about the past simple tense—check it out if you’d like to further explore this topic!

Past Imperfect Tense

The past imperfect tense describes a specific action, which was either in progress or incomplete at a definite moment in the past. It can be recognized when the following time phrases are used in the sentence:

  • тогава (togava) – then
  • по това време (po tova vreme) – at that time
  • в този момент (v tozi moment) – in this moment

    По това време учениците седяха на масата и учеха.
        Po tova vreme uchenitsite sedyaha na masata i ucheha.
        At that time, the students were sitting at the table and studying.

Another usage of this tense is to express that the action is repeated in the past.

    ➢ Всеки вторник ходех в библиотеката и четях.
        Vseki vtornik hodeh v bibliotekata i chetyah.
        Every Tuesday, I was going to the library and reading.

Here are the endings for the past continuous tense:

Personal pronounsEndings for past continuous tense
аз
ти-ше
той/тя/то-ше
ние -хме
вие-хте
те-ха

If you recall the endings for the past simple tense, you’ll notice that the only change comes in the second and third persons singular, where the ending -ше is added after the stem vowel

There are three stem vowels (, , ) that can be used to form the past continuous tense. Let’s see how they’re formed using the verbs we saw above.

  • говоря (govorya) – to talk / I talk
  • чета (cheta) – to read / I read
  • питам (pitam) – to ask / I ask
  • отговарям (otgovariam) – to answer / I answer
  • мисля (mislya) – to think / I think

Personal pronounsVerb with stem vowel Verb with stem vowel Verb with stem vowel
азпитахчетяхмислeх
типиташечетешемислеше
той/тя/топиташечетешемислеше
ние питахмечетяхмемислeхме
виепитахтечетяхтемислeхте
тепитахачетяхамислeха

Examples:

    ➢ Дълго време четях тази голяма книга.
        Dalgo vreme chetyah tazi golyama kniga.
        I was reading this big book for a long time.

    ➢ За какво си мислеше, когато ти се обадих? 
        Za kakvo si misleshe, kogato ti se obadih?
        What were you thinking about when I called you?
What Were You Thinking about When I Called You?

    ★ Practical Exercise No. 5 – Past Continuous Tense

Fill in all the forms of the following verbs in the past continuous tense, based on their stem vowel:

Personal pronounsVerb with stem vowel Verb with stem vowel Verb with stem vowel
азотговаряхучехлежах
ти*
той/тя/то*
ние 
вие
те

We added one new verb: 

  • лежах (lezhah) – I was lying

* Note: The stem vowel for this verb is changed to -e in the second and third persons singular.

Минало неопределено време (minalo neopredeleno vreme) – Present Perfect Tense

This tense is used to describe an action that has taken place in the past, but its result continues in the present. Just like the English present perfect tense, the Bulgarian минало неопределено време tense uses a compound form of the verb съм (to be) in the present tense and the past active participle of the completed form. 

Examples:

    ➢ Гостите са дошли у нас.
        Gostite sa doshli u nas.
        The guests have come to us.

        [meaning that they are still in our house]

    ➢ Някой е взел учебника ми.
        Nyakoy e vzel uchebnika mi.
        Somebody has taken my textbook.

        [meaning that the textbook is still missing]

Let’s see in the table how it’s formed:

Personal pronounsEndings for present perfect tense (Минало неопределено време)
азсъм   -л (-а, -о)*
тиси    -л (-а, -о)*
той
тя
то
е      -л
е      -ла
е      -ло
ние сме   -ли 
виесте   -ли 
теса    -ли 

* For the first and second persons, the ending will depend on the gender:

  •  Without vowel – for masculine gender
  • – for feminine gender 
  • – for neuter gender

Let’s see how to form a few of our verbs into минало неопределено време. You can try the rest of them yourself in the Practical Exercise below.

  • говоря (govorya) – to talk / I talk
  • чета (cheta) – to read / I read
  • питам (pitam) – to ask / I ask
  • отговарям (otgovariam) – to answer / I answer
  • мисля (mislya) – to think / I think

Personal pronounsчетаговоря
азсъм чел/а/осъм говорил/а/о
тиси чел/а/оси говорил/а/о
той
тя
то
е     чел 
е     
чела 
е     
чело
е     говорил 
е     
говорила 
е     
говорило
ние сме челисме говорили
виесте челисте говорили
теса челиса говорили

    ★ Practical Exercise No. 6 – Present Perfect Tense (минало неопределено време)

Fill in all the forms of the following verbs in the present perfect tense (минало неопределено време), based on their stem vowel:

Personal pronounsпитамотговаряммисля
азсъм питал/а/осъм отговорил/а/осъм мислил/а/о
ти
тойтято
ние 
вие
те

Минало предварително време (minalo predvaritelno vreme) – Past Perfect Tense

This tense is formed using the forms of the past continuous tense of the verb съм (to be) and the past active participle of the completed form. So the verb forms remain the same as those described above for the Bulgarian минало неопределено време. The only change is in the verb съм, which is used in its past continuous tense: бях (byah).

It’s used to show that an action was completed before another action or moment in the past, which is mentioned or implied. The result of the action affects that past moment.

Examples:

    ➢ Когато влязох, тя вече беше чела писмото.
        Kogato vlyazoh, tya veche beshe chela pismoto.
        When I entered, she had already read the letter.

    ➢ Преди да дойда, той вече беше купил билети за киното.
        Predi da doyda, toy veche beshe kupil bileti za kinoto.
        Before I came, he had already bought tickets for the movie.

When I Entered, She Had Already Read the Letter.

Let’s see how it’s formed:

Personal pronounsEndings for past perfect tense (Минало предварително време)
азбях  -л (-а, -о)*
тибеше   -л (-а, -о)*
той
тя
то
беше      -л   
беше      -ла   
беше      -ло
ние бяхме  -ли 
виебяхте  -ли 
тебяха   -ли 

* For the first and second persons, the ending will depend on the gender:

  •  Without vowel – for masculine gender
  • – for feminine gender 
  • for neuter gender

Let’s see how to form a few of our verbs into минало предварително време. You can try the rest of them yourself in the Practical Exercise below.

  • говоря (govorya) – to talk / I talk
  • чета (cheta) – to read / I read
  • питам (pitam) – to ask / I ask
  • отговарям (otgovariam) – to answer / I answer
  • мисля (mislya) – to think / I think

Personal pronounsчетаговоря
азбях чел/а/обях говорил/а/о
тибеше чел/а/обеше говорил/а/о
той
тя
то
беше     чел 
беше     
чела 
беше     чело
беше     говорил 
беше     
говорила 
беше     
говорило
ние бяхме челибяхме говорили
виебяхте челибяхте говорили
тебяха челибяха говорили

    ★ Practical Exercise No. 7 – Past Perfect Tense (минало предварително време)

Fill in all the forms of the following verbs in the past perfect tense (минало предварително време), based on their stem vowel:

Personal pronounsпитамотговаряммисля
азбях питал/а/обях отговорил/а/обях мислил/а/о
ти
той
тя
то
ние 
вие
те

4. Future Tenses

There are four Bulgarian future tenses: 

  • Future Tense
  • Future Perfect Tense
  • Future in the Past Tense
  • бъдеще предварително време в миналото (badeshte predvaritelno vreme v minaloto) – Future Preliminary Tense in the Past

That last one can be described as past future perfect or future perfect in the past.

Future Tense

The Bulgarian future tense is very easy to form. Just take the present simple tense of the verb and place the particle ще (shte), meaning “will,” before the verb form.

Examples:

    ➢ Утре ще отида на кино.
        Utre shte otida na kino.
        Tomorrow, I will go to the cinema.

    ➢ Вечерта ще уча български език.
        Vecherta shte ucha balgarski ezik.
        In the evening, I will study the Bulgarian language.

When negating a verb in the future tense, the impersonal verb няма and the particle да are placed before the present tense verb.

Examples:

    ➢ Аз няма да дойда.
        Az nyama da doyda.
        I will not come.

    ➢ Те няма да четат от книгата днес.
        Te nyama da chetat ot knigata dnes.
        They will not read from the book today.

The Bulgarian future tense corresponds to both the future and future progressive tenses in English.

Let’s see how to form a few of our verbs in the future tense. You can try the rest of them for yourself in the Practical Exercise below.

  • говоря (govorya) – to talk / I talk
  • чета (cheta) – to read / I read
  • питам (pitam) – to ask / I ask
  • отговарям (otgovariam) – to answer / I answer
  • мисля (mislya) – to think / I think

Personal pronouns1st  Conjugation2nd Conjugation3rd Conjugation
азще четаще говоряще питам
тище четешще говоришще питаш
той/тя/тоще четеще говорище пита
ние ще четемще говоримще питаме
виеще чететеще говоритеще питате
теще четатще говорятще питат

    ★ Practical Exercise No. 8 – Future Tense

If you’ve already filled this table for the present tense exercise, it will be very easy for you to form the future tense:

Personal pronounsразбирамзнаяучамечтаявярвамиграя
аз
ти
той/тя/то
ние 
вие
те

Future Perfect Tense

In Bulgarian, the future perfect tense is called бъдеще предварително време (badeshte predvaritelno vreme). It’s formed using the particle for future tense (ще), the verb съм (to be), and the past active completed participle of the main verb. 

It expresses a future action, which will have been completed by a given future moment. The result of the action affects that future moment. This tense corresponds to the English future perfect tense. 

Examples:

    ➢ До утре вечер ще съм прочел цялата книга.
        Do utre vecher shte sam prochel tsyalata kniga.
        I will have read the whole book by tomorrow night.

    ➢ До тогава хората ще са променили природата.
        Do togava horata shte sa promenili prirodata.
        Until then, people will have changed nature.

Until Then, People Will Have Changed Nature.

It’s easy to form this tense, assuming you’ve already learned how to form минало предварително време. The only difference is that we add the particle ще to the forms.

Personal pronounsчетаговоря
азще съм чел/а/още съм говорил/а/о
тище си чел/а/още си говорил/а/о
той
тя
то
ще е     чел
ще е     чела
ще е     чело
ще е     говорил 
ще е     говорила 
ще е     говорило
ние ще сме челище сме говорили
виеще сте челище сте говорили
теще са челище са говорили

    ★ Practical Exercise No. 9 – Future Perfect Tense (бъдеще предварително време)

Fill in all the forms of the following verbs in the future perfect tense (бъдеще предварително време), based on their stem vowel:

Personal pronounsпитамотговаряммисля
азще съм питал/а/още съм отговорил/а/още съм мислил/а/о
ти
тойтято
ние 
вие
те

Future in the Past Tense

Бъдеще време в миналото (Badeshte vreme v minaloto) is expressed using compound forms. It’s formed using the auxiliary verb ща in the past continuous tense (щях), the particle да, and the main verb in the present simple tense. 

Examples:

    Щях да чета.
        Shtyah da cheta.
        I would (was going to) read.

    Щях да пея.
        Shtyah da peya.
        I would (was going to) sing.

The negative form is expressed using нямаше (nyamashe), which is not conjugated for the person or number, plus the particle да and the main verb in the present simple tense. 

Examples:

    Нямаше да чета.
        Niamashe da cheta.
        I would not (was not going to) read.

    Нямаше да пея.
        Niamashe da peya.
        I would not (was not going to) sing.

This tense expresses an action in the past, which has taken place after another moment in the past. It corresponds to the English future in the past tense. 

Examples:

    ➢ Те щяха да прекарат лятото на това място.
        Te shtyaha da prekarat lyatoto na tova myastо.
        They were going to spend the summer in this place.

    ➢ Влакът щеше да тръгне след 5 минути.
        Vlakat shteshe da tragne sled 5 minuti.
        The train was going to leave in 5 minutes.

Let’s see how to form a few of our verbs in the future in the past tense. You can try the rest of them for yourself in the Practical Exercise below.

  • говоря (govorya) – to talk / I talk
  • чета (cheta) – to read / I read
  • питам (pitam) – to ask / I ask
  • отговарям (otgovariam) – to answer / I answer
  • мисля (mislya) – to think / I think

Personal pronouns1st  Conjugation2nd Conjugation3rd Conjugation
азщях да четащях да говорящях да питам
тищеше да четешщеше да говоришщеше да питаш
той/тя/тощеше да четещеше да говорищеше да пита
ние щяхме да четемщяхме да говоримщяхме да питаме
виещяхте да чететещяхте да говоритещяхте да питате
тещяха да четатщяха да говорятщяха да питат
    ★ Practical Exercise No. 10 – Future in the Past Tense

If you’ve already filled in this table for the present tense, use the table above to form the future in the past tense:

Personal pronounsразбирамзнаявярвамиграя
аз
ти
той/тя/то
ние 
вие
те

Past Future Perfect

Бъдеще предварително време в миналото (badeshte predvaritelno vreme v minaloto), or future preliminary tense in the past, can be described as “past future perfect” or “future perfect in the past.” This is the most complex compound tense.

It represents an action in its relation to a past moment the same way that the simple future tense presents it in relation to the moment of speaking. In other words, these forms mean that the action has passed in relation to a certain past moment, which in turn is forthcoming (future) for the past moment in question.

Let’s give an example:

    ➢ Ако не беше закъснял толкова, досега щяхме да сме излезли.
        Ako ne beshe zakasnyal tolkova, dosega shtyahme da sme izlezli.
        If he hadn’t been so late, we would have been out by now.

It’s formed using the auxiliary verb ща in the past continuous tense (щях), the particle да, the verb съм in the present tense, and the main verb in the present simple tense. This tense is rarely used because of its complex compound form, but to make this guide complete, we’ll show you how to form it just in case:

Personal pronounsчетаговоря
азщях да съм чел/а/ощях да съм говорил/а/о
тищеше да си чел/а/ощеше да си говорил/а/о
той
тя
то
щеше да е     чел
щеше да е     чела
щеше да е     чело
щеше да е     говорил 
щеше да е     говорила 
щеше да е     говорило
ние щяхме да сме челищяхме да сме говорили
виещяхте да сте челищяхте да сте говорили
тещяха да са челищяха да са говорили

    ★ Practical Exercise No. 11 – Past Future Perfect Tense

Try to create the forms of the following verbs in the past future perfect tense:

Personal pronounsпитамотговаряммисля
азщях да съм питал/а/ощях да съм отговорил/а/ощях да съм мислил/а/о
ти
тойтято
ние 
вие
те

5. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn Bulgarian Tenses

We hope you found our overview of Bulgarian verb tenses useful and practical for your study needs. At BulgarianPod101, we always strive to help our students learn Bulgarian in the fastest, easiest, and most effective way possible. 

We provide our students with plenty of lessons in both audio and video formats, in addition to our themed vocabulary lists, Bulgarian-English dictionary, and other free resources. But if you feel like you need a personal coach who can explain the Bulgarian tenses to you in greater detail and practice them with you, consider creating a Premium PLUS account to utilize our MyTeacher service. This service gives you your own personal tutor, who can help you learn and practice at your own pace! 

Before you go: Did you find the practical exercises throughout this article easy, or were they a bit difficult? Remember that you can find the answers for each exercise below. 

Happy learning!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Bulgarian

How Long Does it Take to Learn Bulgarian?

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The Bulgarian language is not an easy one for English speakers to learn. Being part of the Slavic language family, it differs quite a bit from the Germanic and Romance languages. Not only do learners have to get used to the Cyrillic alphabet, but they must also learn all the noun and adjective endings for different genders, the verb conjugations for different tenses, and so on. 

Feeling intimidated already? 

Don’t worry! BulgarianPod101 is here to encourage you. 

Although it might take some time, learning Bulgarian is possible. In this article, we’ll teach you how to learn Bulgarian faster and more effectively for the best results. 

There are three things you’ll need if you want to master the language: 

  • Motivation. In order to succeed, you need to maintain a high level of motivation during the entire learning process. One way you can do this is to stick to a schedule. Of course, in order to make a good plan, you’ll need to know how long it would take to learn Bulgarian to reach a beginner, intermediate, or advanced level. Don’t worry: Our guide will give you practical information regarding what kind of time commitment you’re looking at.
  • Persistence. You’ll come across some difficult topics and subjects throughout the course of your studies, but it’s important to continue your learning in order to advance. Each challenge you overcome will make you a more successful language learner.
  • Achievement. When you see your first marks of progress, you’ll be motivated to continue your studies. The more achievements you see, the more motivated you’ll be to learn the Bulgarian language in full.
Your Progress Depends on Your Motivation, Persistence, and Achievements!
Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Bulgarian Table of Contents
  1. 3 Factors That Play a Huge Role in Bulgarian Language Learning
  2. Comparison Between Bulgarian and Other Languages
  3. How Long Does it Take to Achieve aBeginner Level?
  4. How Long Does it Take to Achieve an Intermediate Level?
  5. How Long Does it Take to Achieve an Advanced Level?
  6. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn the Bulgarian Language

3 Factors That Play a Huge Role in Bulgarian Language Learning

There are three main factors that determine how long it takes to learn Bulgarian:

  • Attitude. Having a positive attitude toward learning will make the process much easier and more enjoyable for you. Try to be as dedicated as possible, and view this as an opportunity to broaden your horizons. 
  • Time. The more time you study and practice the language, the less time it will take to get used to it.
  • Attentiveness. Some people have a talent for learning foreign languages quickly. If you’re among them, consider yourself lucky! The learning process will require less effort from you compared to other learners. But regardless of your natural inclinations toward language learning, you should always strive to be attentive in your studies!
Attitude, Time, Attentiveness

Comparison Between Bulgarian and Other Languages

The time it will take you to learn Bulgarian depends, to some extent, on your first language. If you’re a native English speaker, then you might find the Bulgarian language more difficult to learn than other languages (like French, Spanish, or Italian). 

One of the reasons for this is the existence of a third gender (neuter) in Bulgarian, compared to the two genders (masculine and feminine) used in the Romance languages mentioned above. This means that Bulgarian learners have to learn more noun and adjective forms, as well as how to identify the three different genders. 

In addition, Bulgarian belongs to the group of Slavic languages, which are more challenging to learn compared to the other European languages. There are many irregular forms of verbs, noun cases, exceptions to the rules, etc. that make studying more difficult.

However, learning the Bulgarian language is not Mission Impossible as long as you dedicate your time and efforts to achieving this goal. Below, we’ll discuss how long it takes to master each of the Bulgarian language levels based on research by the Foreign Service Institute (FSI).

How the Foreign Service Institute Ranks Bulgarian

The FSI has divided foreign languages into four categories. Category I languages are the most similar to English (and thus easier to learn), while Category IV languages are the least similar (and most difficult to learn). 

Category I languages include Spanish, French, and Italian, for instance. These take an English speaker roughly 24 weeks (600 hours) of intensive study to reach speaking and reading proficiency. 

On the other end of the scale are Category IV languages, which include Arabic, Korean, and Japanese, for example. These languages take about 88 weeks (2200 hours) to fully master. 

So where exactly does Bulgarian fall? 

Category 1 Languages

The FSI classifies Bulgarian as a Category III language. Other languages in this category include Czech, Polish, Turkish, and Greek. These languages take about 44 weeks (1100 hours) of study to master. 

So if you would like to learn Bulgarian, you may need almost a full year of studying to gain fluency in speaking, reading, and writing, and to communicate freely with Bulgarians. Although this might seem like a long time, you can succeed if you’re persistent in your efforts and accumulate knowledge slowly but surely. 

That said, you can start speaking Bulgarian way sooner! If you follow the lessons prepared by BulgarianPod101, you’ll be able to start communicating with native speakers within a few weeks. Don’t you think it’ll be worth the effort? 

Additional Note: Keep in mind that Bulgarian learners who already know Russian or another Slavic language will have a much easier time picking up the language. This is because Bulgarian and other Slavic languages have many things in common.

How Long Does it Take to Achieve a Beginner Level?

Start to Communicate at the Beginner Level

What language skills are developed at the beginner level?

The beginner level encompasses levels A1 and A2

It involves comprehension of everyday expressions and simple conversations. For example, you’ll be able to greet someone, introduce yourself, and ask questions to maintain a conversation at a simple level, if your interlocutor speaks slowly enough. You’ll also be able to express your needs to others. 

How do you know whether you’re at the A1 or A2 level? If any of these things apply to you, you’re probably still at the A1 level: 

  • The Bulgarian language is completely new to you
  • You may have lived for a short time in Bulgaria, but you know only a few words and phrases
  • You may have started to study this language on your own, but without sufficient practice

How long does it take to become a beginner-level Bulgarian speaker?

It usually takes 2 months (50 hours) to master these basic Bulgarian language skills.

How can you reach this level faster?

If you would like to accelerate your progress, you can watch YouTube channels that teach the Bulgarian language to beginners. A good place to start is Learn Bulgarian with BulgarianPod101.com, where you can find hundreds of free lessons to help you advance much more quickly.

Using flashcards to remember new words is also very useful at this level of language study. Wondering how to learn Bulgarian faster using mobile flashcards? You can learn more about this method on our website!

Absolute Beginner Pathways for Bulgarian Learners

Here are some tips on how to learn Bulgarian online using BulgarianPod101.com! 

  • Start with the Bulgarian alphabet. 

    The Bulgarian alphabet is the foundation upon which you’ll build the rest of your language skills. Do not skip or postpone this step! We recommend starting with our free alphabet guide for absolute beginners, which will help you quickly become familiar with the Bulgarian alphabet. It might take you up to a week to feel completely comfortable with it, but it’s well worth the effort.
  • Go through some well-structured audio lessons.

    Becoming comfortable with audio material right from the start will really help speed up your progress. You can check out our 3-Minute Bulgarian series, which consists of 25 three-minute lessons suitable for beginners. You’ll get acquainted with topics such as self-introductions, greetings, manners, asking questions, making apologies, and much more. It might take you a couple of weeks to get through the series, depending on how many lessons you do each day.
  • Study longer, more complicated beginner lessons. 

    Next, you might want to go through our Absolute Beginner pathway. It features 25 lessons (about 10 minutes each) that will help you better assimilate the information from the previous course and learn new vocabulary/skills. By the end of this series, you’ll be able to express your thoughts, needs, and questions more effectively. It might take 2-3 weeks of study and practice to feel confident speaking with your Bulgarian interlocutors.

Bonus: How much Bulgarian can you learn in 60 minutes? To find out, try out our 60-minute course Lessons for Your Flight to Bulgaria! If you’re an A2-level learner, you’ll find this easy to complete—but it’s still a great way to reinforce your vocabulary knowledge. 

How much time will it take to reach beginner-level Bulgarian with BulgarianPod101.com?

Mastering the Bulgarian AlphabetUp to 1 week
3-Minute Bulgarian SeriesUp to 2 weeks
Absolute Beginner PathwayUp to 3 weeks

It takes a maximum of 6 weeks to reach the beginner Bulgarian level with our platform. Not that bad, right?

  • We’ve also prepared a bunch of interesting 1-minute animated series videos that are well-suited for absolute beginners.

How Long Does it Take to Achieve an Intermediate Level?

What language skills are developed at the intermediate level?

The intermediate level (B1 and B2), can be summed up in just one word: communication

At this stage, you have the ability to communicate about broad topics that aren’t too complicated. These topics usually involve hobbies, weather, work, education, details about locations, holidays, etc. You’ll also be able to describe experiences, events, ideas, projects, likes, and dislikes; you could lead conversations with local Bulgarians more freely. 

At the B2 level, you’ll have additional fluency when communicating on a wider range of contexts.

Do any of the following points apply to you? Then it means you’re ready to start studying at the intermediate level. 

  • You have already completed the A2 level.
  • You’re able to lead basic conversations.
  • You require some extra practice in both spoken and written Bulgarian.
  • You would like to get prepared for an upcoming Bulgarian language exam.

How long does it take to become an intermediate-level Bulgarian speaker?

It usually takes 4 months (80-90 hours) to master these intermediate Bulgarian-language skills. This timeframe applies to intensive learners who study every day for about 4 hours. For those who study every other day, it may take 8 or more months to achieve this stage.

Start to Communicate More Freely at the Intermediate Level

How can you reach this level faster?

If this sounds like a long time to you, here are some tricks and tips on how to learn Bulgarian quickly at this stage:

Also make sure to check out our list of 5 Tips to Reach Intermediate Level!

Intermediate-Level Pathways for Bulgarian Learners

After achieving a basic level of Bulgarian, you may find that things become harder to learn. The new information is more complicated and should be gradually added to your existing knowledge. You’ll need to engage in many more practical exercises to start advancing. 

BulgarianPod101 has prepared appropriate lessons for this language level as well, to help intermediate learners accelerate their progress at this stage.

  • All About 

    Our All About course consists of 15 short audio lessons that will help you learn all about the society and culture of Bulgaria. The total duration of this series is 1hr 51min.
  • Conversational Phrases

    This is another short course of 10 audio lessons with a total duration of just 10 minutes. It will get you acquainted with more conversational phrases and teach you common words you’ll need in your conversations.
  • Essential Bulgarian for Emergencies

    This course consists of 8 lessons, and it’s a very practical set that will help you develop intermediate-level skills you can use in a pinch.
  • Level 3 Bulgarian

    As you start to feel more confident with level B1, you can try out our Level 3 Bulgarian pathway. It features 25 lessons for a total duration of 6hrs 21min; there are also 10 assignments to complete. This course is aligned with level B1 of the CEFR scale.

How Long Does it Take to Achieve an Advanced Level?

What language skills are developed at the advanced level?

The advanced level is commonly referred to as C1-C2 and is very close to the native language level. The C2 level is considered to be the highest proficiency possible, and reaching it means you can use Bulgarian fluently in nearly all contexts. 

Upon reaching an advanced level, you’ll be able to… 

  • …talk with native speakers fluently, without needing to grasp for specific words or phrases. 
  • …communicate with others about many different topics (personal experiences, professions, science, etc.).
  • …build a variety of complex sentences in all tenses. 

In addition, native Bulgarian speakers will be able to easily understand your thoughts and opinions when you speak. 

It’s important to note that lessons at this level no longer focus on grammar. Usually, they include reading or listening to media on different subjects in the Bulgarian language, as well as lectures and workshops.

Ready for an Advanced Level of Bulgarian?

You’re ready to start studying advanced Bulgarian if the following points apply to you:

  • You’ve completed the B2 level and you use Bulgarian grammar correctly.
  • You’re planning to work or study in Bulgaria.
  • You’re not satisfied with an average knowledge of Bulgarian and would like to gain fluency.

This level is definitely for those who are ready to double their efforts! 

How long does it take to become an advanced-level Bulgarian speaker?

As we mentioned above, Bulgarian is a Category III language, meaning that it features significant cultural and linguistic differences from English. 

To achieve proficiency in Bulgarian, intensive learners will need at least 1100 hours (44 weeks) of study. This equates to 5 hours per day, 5 days per week. You’ll need almost a full year of study to reach the C1 level of Bulgarian at this pace. If you study 2 hours a day (or less), you’ll need about 2 years to achieve this level.

How can you reach this level faster?

Although achieving the C1 level is not easy and takes a long time, there are some tips you could try in order to reach your goal faster:

  • Find a native Bulgarian friend with whom you can often communicate.
  • Spend a few months in Bulgaria to experience deep immersion into its language and culture.
  • Watch special Bulgarian lessons intended for advanced learners.
  • Continue to read, write, and listen in Bulgarian on a daily basis.

Advanced-Level Pathways for Bulgarian Learners

Are you serious about your studies and want some tips on how to learn Bulgarian faster? BulgarianPod101.com offers our advanced students plenty of fun and effective lessons to help enhance their skills. 

  • Level 5 Bulgarian 

    This advanced lesson pathway features 25 lessons for a total duration of 1hr 21min. This course is aligned with level C1 of the CEFR and covers topics including the top 10 Bulgarian tourist destinations, the top 10 Bulgarian leaders, and the top 10 Bulgarian writers.
  • Listening Comprehension for Advanced Learners

    Another great course is our Listening Comprehension for Advanced Learners series. Each lesson includes dialogues, answers to questions, and a full breakdown. The total duration of these 20 lessons is 1hr 9min.

If you’re looking for even more ways to stay motivated, check out the Innovative Language 101 app for mobile devices. It allows you to learn Bulgarian anywhere, anytime! This innovative app is appropriate for all levels, so don’t miss out.

Download the Free Mobile App to Learn Bulgarian!

How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn the Bulgarian Language

In this article, we talked about how long it takes to learn Bulgarian for each level of proficiency. We also discussed what’s expected of learners at each level and how to reach your learning goals faster with BulgarianPod101.com

There’s still one key feature of our site we haven’t mentioned yet: MyTeacher for Premium PLUS members. With this service, you can get one-on-one tutoring and help from a native Bulgarian teacher. He or she can help you learn Bulgarian faster by guiding you step by step through the language—vocabulary, grammar rules, pronunciation, and more—so you can reach your desired proficiency level with little problem.

Before you go, we’re curious: How likely are you to start learning Bulgarian after reading this article? Feel free to reach out with any questions or concerns you still have—we’ll be glad to help!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Bulgarian

Bulgarian Proverbs Guide: Learn 30 Wise Bulgarian Sayings

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Proverbs are short and straightforward sayings that express valuable life advice. Studying Bulgarian proverbs means digging deeper into the local culture—it also means that you’re an advanced Bulgarian language learner who’s ready to take their knowledge to the next level. And while proverbs can be quite valuable to language learners, they also teach people how to be wiser in different life situations.

It’s always a fascinating adventure to explore the proverbs and sayings of other cultures, so BulgarianPod101 has compiled this list of thirty proverbs in Bulgarian along with their English translations. We think you’ll step away from this article a little wiser than before…

Are You Ready to Start This Journey to Wisdom?

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Bulgarian Table of Contents
  1. Bulgarian Proverbs About Success
  2. Bulgarian Proverbs About Wisdom
  3. Bulgarian Proverbs About Love
  4. Bulgarian Proverbs About Friendship
  5. Bulgarian Proverbs About Food
  6. Bulgarian Proverbs About Health
  7. Bulgarian Proverbs About Work and Language Learning Efforts
  8. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn Bulgarian

1. Bulgarian Proverbs About Success

We all strive to be successful in life, whatever that means to us. So what essential features must one develop to achieve success in life? Here are a few Bulgarian proverbs and sayings to offer you some cultural perspective on the topic. 

#1 

BulgarianКапка по капка, вир става.
PronunciationKapka po kapka, vir stava.
LiteralDrop by drop turns into a pool.
EquivalentDrop by drop is the water pot filled.
This Bulgarian saying means that diligence and persistence lead to success. Even a few drops of water, if collected instead of being wasted, can add up over time so that you have enough to fill an entire pot. The same concept applies to money, experience, and any life skill that requires endurance. If you want to be successful, you have to be patient.

Fill Your Cup of Success Drop by Drop

#2 

BulgarianКойто се учи, той ще сполучи.
PronunciationKoyto se uchi, toy shte spoluchi.
LiteralA person who learns will succeed.
EquivalentKnowledge is power and power is success.
If you want to be successful, then learn, learn, learn. The more knowledge you gain, the more confidence you’ll have while meeting different challenges in your work. Although knowledge alone is not enough, it’s an important part of achieving success. 

Now, let’s apply this proverb to Bulgarian language learning. In order to become a fluent Bulgarian speaker, you must learn more and more Bulgarian words. Add new words to your vocabulary every single day and you’ll succeed.

#3 

BulgarianКапката дълбае камъка не със сила, а с постоянство.
PronunciationKapkata dalbae kamaka ne sas sila, a s postoyanstvo.
LiteralA drop carves a stone not with force, but with perseverance.
EquivalentIf you want a well, dig only in one place.
This Bulgarian saying means that people who would like to become real experts in something should work hard in their field until they’ve perfected their skills. There are many people out there who try hard in the beginning, only to give up once they get tired or discouraged, which prevents them from becoming successful. Everyone is able to be successful if he or she is persistent enough to continue even in the face of challenges.

#4 

BulgarianАко не кърпиш вехтото, ново няма да носиш.
PronunciationAko ne karpish vehtoto, novo nyama da nosish.
LiteralIf you don’t patch your old cloth, you will not wear a new one.
EquivalentSpending is quick, earning is slow.
Older Bulgarians in particular tend to prefer saving money over spending it on unnecessary things. Years of stringency made them frugal, and they respect people who know how to save money in order to spend it when a real need arises.

The Way to Success

2. Bulgarian Proverbs About Wisdom

Bulgarians have many proverbs about wisdom. In fact, they even have a national folklore character named Хитър Петър (Hitar Petar), who is a symbol of cunning, wisdom, and wit. That said, let’s go over a few inspirational Bulgarian proverbs related to wisdom! 

#5

BulgarianУтрото е по-мъдро от вечерта.
PronunciationUtroto e po-madro ot vecherta.
LiteralThe morning is wiser than the evening.
EquivalentAn hour in the morning is worth two in the evening.
On the one hand, this Bulgarian proverb suggests that the morning hours are the most productive ones. On the other hand, people in Bulgaria say this proverb when they have an important decision to make and it’s already late in the evening. They believe that making the decision should be postponed until the next morning, as the brain is tired in the evening and cannot think clearly. In the morning, when a person wakes up, he or she can consider problems much more efficiently and are more likely to make the right decision. That is why the morning is wiser than the evening.

#6

BulgarianДокато мъдрите се намъдруват, лудите се налудуват.
PronunciationDokato madrite se namadruvat, ludite se naluduvat.
LiteralWhile the wise people philosophize, the mad people go crazy.
This Bulgarian proverb means that if the rulers are weak, the whole nation will suffer at the hands of offenders. In this case, the word “wise” is used in an ironic sense, because these “wise people” only philosophize instead of taking real actions to stop the criminals.

#7

BulgarianУм царува, ум робува, ум патки пасе.
PronunciationUm tsaruva, um robuva, um patki pase.
LiteralThe mind reigns, the mind is enslaved, the mind grazes ducks.
EquivalentSome are wise and some are otherwise.
This Bulgarian saying means a few different things:
  • A person can become engaged in various activities, whether it’s science, management, or anything else. It depends on his motivation, what kind of work he is going to choose, and what future he will have.

  • Everyone is capable of being a shepherd, a hotel manager, a policeman, a builder, etc.

  • The decisions you make can take you down from the position of a ruler to that of a slave.

Some Are Wise and Some Are Otherwise.

#8

BulgarianПо дрехите посрещат, по ума изпращат.
PronunciationPo drehite posreshtat, po uma izprashtat.
EquivalentFirst impression is from your dress, last impression from your brains/wits.
The first thing people notice about you is your clothes, so they might initially be impressed by your appearance. But after talking with you, they’ll get an impression of your brain or wits. Wiser people don’t talk too much, and Bulgarians usually don’t welcome those who are too talkative. They like balanced conversations, so be aware of this if you’re ever invited to a Bulgarian’s home.

How Much Better to Get Wisdom than Gold...

3. Bulgarian Proverbs About Love

As a popular song states, “All you need is love.” In that vein, let’s explore some of the most popular Bulgarian love proverbs

#9

BulgarianЛюбов хубост не гледа.
PronunciationLyubov hubost ne gleda.
LiteralLove does not look for beautiful appearance.
EquivalentBeauty is not in the face; beauty is a light in the heart.
When one person loves another, he or she doesn’t notice any defects in the appearance or character of the one they love. A Bible proverb written by Solomon says that “love covers over all wrongs.”

#10

BulgarianСтарата любов ръжда не хваща.
PronunciationStarata lyubov razhda ne hvashta.
EquivalentOld love does not rust.
This saying means that old feelings do not fade away. Metal may rust over time and waste away, but feelings of love typically don’t and can even stay as strong as they were in the very beginning!

It’s interesting to note that Bulgarians have another proverb which states exactly the opposite: 

#11

BulgarianОчи, които дълго не се виждат, се забравят.
PronunciationOchi, koito dalgo ne se vizhdat, se zabravyat.
LiteralEyes that have not seen each other for a long time can be forgotten.
EquivalentOut of sight, out of mind.
If two lovers are separated for a long time, they might forget each other—especially if their love is not well-rooted.

Out of Sight, Out of Mind.

#12

BulgarianМладост без любов — пролет без цвете.
PronunciationMladost bez lyubov — prolet bez tsvete.
LiteralYouth without love is spring without a flower.
EquivalentWithout love, everything is in vain.
One cannot be happy without loving and being loved. This Bulgarian proverb states that love is the essence of life, making everything around it beautiful—just like flowers make springtime the most beautiful season.

Love


4. Bulgarian Proverbs About Friendship

Bulgarians value true friendship, so it should come as no surprise that we have many proverbs on the topic. Who knows? Maybe they’ll help you understand who your true friends are! 

#13

BulgarianПриятел в нужда се познава.
PronunciationPriyatel v nuzhda se poznava.
LiteralA friend is recognized in need.
EquivalentA friend in need is a friend indeed.
A true friend will always help out in times of need, and will never leave his or her friend to suffer alone. They’ll dedicate their time, money, and efforts to help you, doing everything they can to make you feel better. A false friend, on the other hand, will hide from you as soon as you run into troubles.

#14

BulgarianКажи ми какви са приятелите ти, за да ти кажа какъв си.
PronunciationKazhi mi kakvi sa priyatelite ti, za da ti kazha kakav si.
EquivalentTell me who your friends are, and I will tell you who you are.
This Bulgarian saying means that the friends you hang out with can define you. This makes sense, as friends tend to share personality and behavioral traits. As such, you can tell a lot about a person based on who their friends are. 

What Friendship Looks Like

#15

BulgarianЛют човек приятел не държи.
PronunciationLyut chovek priyatel ne darzhi.
LiteralA furious man does not keep any friends around.
It’s difficult for some people to find friends. They might think that the problem lies with other people, but often the problem is hidden within themselves. No one wants to hang around or be associated with an angry person.

Hey, You!!! Why Don’t You Become My Friend?!

#16

BulgarianПриятелството си е приятелство, но сиренето е с пари.
PronunciationPriyatelstvoto si e priyatelstvo, no sireneto e s pari.
LiteralFriendship is friendship, but cheese costs money.
Although a friend in need is a friend indeed, a true friend will not take advantage of a friend’s generosity. Just because your friend sells cheese doesn’t mean you should expect to get any for free!


5. Bulgarian Proverbs About Food

Food is an important detail of one’s life, so here are a few wise Bulgarian sayings related to food.

#17

BulgarianНикой не е по-голям от хляба.
PronunciationNikoy ne e po-golyam ot hlyaba.
LiteralNo one is larger than bread.
This saying reveals the attitude that Bulgarians have toward bread and how important it is to them. In Bulgaria, bread plays an important role and it’s always present on the table. It’s also considered the most holy of foods.

The Importance of Bread for Bulgarians

#18

BulgarianУмният навсякъде си изкарва хляба.
PronunciationUmniyat navsyakade si izkarva hlyaba.
LiteralA smart man earns his bread anywhere.
EquivalentA smart man can earn a living anywhere.
The saying “to earn your own bread” in Bulgarian means to earn a living, which again underlines the importance of bread in Bulgarian culture. This saying means that the wise can overcome all challenges so that they always have enough to live on wherever they are. 

#19

BulgarianГладна кокошка просо сънува.
PronunciationGladna kokoshka proso sanuva.
LiteralA hungry hen dreams of millet.
This proverb relates to wishful thinking. It means that some people dream of things greater than what they have, but they take no action to make it happen in reality.

A Hungry Hen Dreams of Millet

#20

BulgarianДен година храни.
PronunciationDen godina hrani.
TranslationA single day helps you get food for the whole year.
In the past, this saying meant that every day of the year was equally important for earning a living. But nowadays, it’s mostly associated with unfair traders who make their prices unrealistically high in order to make lots of money quickly and remain idle the rest of the year. 


6. Bulgarian Proverbs About Health

Health is among the most valuable acquisitions a person can have, so let’s see what Bulgarian proverbs have to say about it. 

#21

BulgarianЗдрав дух – здраво тяло.
PronunciationZdrav duh – zdravo tyalo.
EquivalentA healthy mind, a healthy body.
This Bulgarian proverb expresses the importance of inner peace, forgiveness, trust, etc., for people’s wellbeing. We should keep our spirit healthy in order to have a healthy body, as stress, anxiety, suspicion, and other negative feelings can increase our chances of getting sick. 

#22

BulgarianНикой не може да бъде по-добър лекар от верния приятел.
PronunciationNikoy ne mozhe da bade po-dobar lekar ot verniya priyatel.
EquivalentNo one is a better doctor than a faithful friend.
This Bulgarian saying is a continuation of the previous one. A faithful friend is able to bear our griefs, so we won’t feel alone in our sorrow. 

A similar proverb goes: 

Споделената мъка е половин мъка, а споделената радост е двойна радост. 
Spodelenata maka e polovin maka, a spodelenata radost e dvoyna radost.
“Shared sorrow is half the sorrow; shared joy is double the joy.”

No One Is a Better Doctor than a Faithful Friend

#23

BulgarianЖивот, здраве и добри помисли като има човек, пари не му трябват.
PronunciationZhivot, zdrave i dobri pomisli kato ima chovek, pari ne mu tryabvat.
TranslationWhen a person has a good life, good health, and good thoughts, he does not need money.
Мoney can’t buy happiness! This saying is as old as money, but it’s true. You can find poor people barely earning a living who are constantly smiling and happy, as well as millionaires who are so miserable and depressed that they take their own lives. This Bulgarian proverb states that there are three factors involved in being happy: life, health, and good thoughts.

#24

BulgarianЗдравето е най-големият имот.
PronunciationZdraveto e nay-golemiyat imot.
TranslationOur health is our largest property.
No matter how many properties we have, and no matter how luxurious and large they are, we cannot enjoy them (or our lives) if we aren’t healthy. That’s why health is considered one of the most valuable and precious things in this world!

Do you have health problems you would like to share with your Bulgarian friends in their own language? BulgarianPod101 can help! Just head over to our vocabulary list of Bulgarian Vocabulary for Common Health Problems

7. Bulgarian Proverbs About Work and Language Learning Efforts

Those who are diligent and persistent in their language learning efforts will soon see progress and advance quickly. For extra motivation, let’s see what Bulgarian proverbs say about work and learning

#25

BulgarianЧовек се учи, докато е жив.
PronunciationChovek se uchi, dokato e zhiv.
LiteralA person learns while he is alive.
EquivalentYou are never too old to learn.
This popular Bulgarian proverb means that we never stop learning, as knowledge itself is endless and our life is too short to comprehend it all.

On the other hand, this saying could also be applied to your Bulgarian language studies. The more you learn, the more successful you’ll be over time. 

Learn to succeed

#26

BulgarianБез труд почивката не е сладка.
PronunciationBez trud pochivkata ne e sladka.
LiteralWithout work, rest is not sweet.
This saying encourages diligence. It suggests that those who don’t work cannot feel the sweetness of rest. They probably cannot sleep as well as those who work hard all day.

#27

BulgarianРаботата на ум учи.
PronunciationRabotata na um uchi.
LiteralThe work teaches the mind.
One only gains practical skills and experience through working, and the same concept applies to language learning. Once you gain minimal knowledge of a language, you should start practicing it in real life to expand upon your skills and gain new ones. Passive learning is often in vain.  

#28

BulgarianЛозето не ще молитва, а мотика.
PronunciationLozeto ne shte molitva, a motika.
LiteralThe vineyard does not need a prayer, but a hoe.
EquivalentGod helps those who help themselves.
This saying is quite popular in Bulgaria, and it conveys the importance of hard work in being successful. If you want your vineyard to give fruit, don’t just sit beside it and pray; take the hoe and start working. No matter how many prayers you say, you won’t receive a good crop unless you work for it. 

The Discerning Heart Seeks Knowledge

8. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Learn Bulgarian

In this Bulgarian proverbs guide, you’ve picked up some useful phrases and gained some valuable insight into the beauty of Bulgarian culture. Learning these proverbs will make it easier for you to communicate with the local people and help you better fit in during your stay in Bulgaria. 

If you would like to learn even more Bulgarian proverbs or dig deeper into Bulgarian grammar, we recommend you try our MyTeacher service for Premium PLUS members. You can choose a private teacher from our team of experienced Bulgarian language experts, who will give you additional information on any topics of your choosing and provide you with practical assignments to hone your skills. 

We hope you enjoyed today’s lesson on Bulgarian proverbs, and that you feel a little bit wiser now. 😉 Before you go, let us know in the comments which of these proverbs you can relate to the most right now. We look forward to hearing from you!

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Travel Guide: The Best Places to Visit in Sofia, Bulgaria

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Bulgaria is an amazing country that has many adventures to offer foreigners. There are so many points of interest that the options can be overwhelming! 

In this Sofia travel guide, we’ll get you acquainted with some of the most interesting places to visit in Sofia and provide you with travel tips to give you more confidence during your very first visit to the Bulgarian capital.

BulgarianPod101 invites you on this intriguing virtual tour before you travel to Sofia, so you can feel the atmosphere of this big city before you even arrive.

Join Our Virtual Tour of the Best Places to Visit in Sofia!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Bulgarian Table of Contents
  1. Before You Go
  2. Sofia Travel Tips
  3. 7 Must-See Places in Sofia for a 1-3 Day Trip
  4. Highly Recommended Places for a 4-7 Day Trip (or Longer)
  5. Bulgarian Survival Phrases for Travelers
  6. How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Master Bulgarian

Before You Go

Before you go on this exciting journey, you may want to learn more about the city you’ll be visiting. In the following sections, you’ll find some basic information about Sofia’s past, population, and climate.

History

Sofia is the capital city of Bulgaria. It’s an ancient city with a long history dating back to 7000 BC when Thracian tribes settled here. Over the following centuries, the Thracians were occupied by the Romans and the Ottomans. The city’s location at the foot of Vitosha Mountain has been considered strategic, thus very attractive for various conquerors. As this land has been inhabited by many tribes and cultures, the remnants of them can still be seen in Sofia. There are Roman ruins, an amphitheater, old churches, and many other sights in this large city.

The city’s name has also been changed many times by new conquerors. During the Roman reign, the city was known as Serdica. In those times, it was an important center that had influence over the whole region. Today, you can still see the Roman ruins around the Saint Sofia Church. There are glass windows in the church, through which you can see the old Roman theater. You can also see the big amphitheater’s ruins nearby, testifying that this lively cultural center was once located here, under modern Sofia. 

Before the city of Sofia received its modern name following its liberation from the Ottoman yoke in 1878 by the Russian Empire, the city was also called Sredets and Triaditsa. 

The Saint Sofia Church

Population

Sofia was heavily populated in the late eighteenth century, home to about 70,000 people. In 1878, the population shrank to only 11,649 people (down from the 19,000 residents eight years prior). However, once Sofia became the new capital of Bulgaria, the number of residents started to increase. Today, the population of Sofia is about 1.23 million—almost 20% of the country’s total population.

Climate

You’ll find this information helpful if you would like to know the best time to visit Sofia. Let’s see what the weather is like in Sofia throughout the year.

The winter months in Sofia are December, January, and February. If you plan to visit Sofia in winter, be prepared for cold temperatures and snowy weather, especially in January and February which are considered the coldest months. The temperature can drop to below -15 °C (5 °F), but is usually about 0 – 5 °C (32 –  41 °F). The snow cover in Sofia lasts about sixty days.

Summers in Sofia (June through August) are sunny and hot. The temperature can exceed 35 °C (95 °F) near the end of July and the beginning of August. This is the time of year when the city receives the most tourists.

Spring and autumn have relatively mild weather, though the weather is more variable and dynamic during these seasons and there could be thunderstorms. There could be fog in Sofia, especially at the beginning of spring and winter, when the weather is subject to drastic changes.

Sofia Travel Tips

If you’re planning to travel to Sofia for the first time, these Sofia travel tips will be very helpful. In the following sections, we’ll discuss currency, accomodation prices, visa rules, food, and transportation.

Sofia Travel Tips

Currency in Bulgaria

The Bulgarian lev is the national currency. 1 euro is pegged to 1.96 leva, which means that 2 Bulgarian leva make roughly 1 euro. So when you’re trying to figure out how much something in Bulgaria costs in euros, the easiest way is to divide the amount by two.

Accomodation Prices in Sofia

The price of your accommodation will depend on the level of luxury you prefer:

  • Luxury: There are many five-star and four-star hotels that typically cost $100 or more per night.
  • Mid-range: The mid-range price for accommodation, depending on the conditions, ranges from $40 to $80 per night.
  • Budget: If you prefer to stay in a hostel, a bed in a dormitory will cost between $5 and $12 per night. If you would like to rent a double bed room, it may cost up to $40. 

You can learn some basic words and phrases for talking about accommodation in our lesson What Are Your Accommodation Options in Bulgaria? 

Visa Rules

Visa rules in Bulgaria differ based on the nationality of the traveler. If you’re an American, you’ll be allowed to stay for up to ninety days and renew your stay every six months. Bulgaria is not part of Schengen yet, but it is part of the EU. If you hold a valid Schengen visa, you’ll be able to take advantage of a visa-free regime and stay in Bulgaria for up to three months within any six-month period. The same conditions apply to residents of Romania, Cyprus, and Croatia.

There are three types of visas to Bulgaria:

  • Visa A for airport transit, which costs $71
  • Visa C for a short stay (up to ninety days), for transit or a planned stay, which costs about $71; however, the exact price may vary based on the international agreements
  • Visa D for a long stay, which costs $118 when you’re planning a stay of six months, and $236 for a one-year stay

Bulgarian Visa Rules

Food in Sofia

Vegetarians will find Bulgaria a great place to dine due to the numerous fruits, vegetables, and dairy products available in the stores and markets. Even vegans can find food here in every season, and there are some restaurants that offer solely vegan food (such as Edgy Veggy, Soul Kitchen, Loving Hut, and Colibri Kitchen).

Keep in mind that Bulgarians are obsessed with dairy foods like yogurt and cheese, which always have to be present on their tables (alongside bread). In vegetarian restaurants, you can order the national Shopska salad with cheese, stuffed peppers, banitsa, cold soup tarator, breaded cheese, guvech, etc.

Like most Balkan nations, the majority of Bulgarians are meat-lovers. If you prefer meat, there are so many dishes to choose from. We recommend you try the kapama, a traditional dish prepared with different types of layered meat and stuffed cabbage leaves. Kebapche (a minced meat stick with spices grilled on a barbeque) and shkembe chorba (tripe soup) are also great choices.


Banitsa, Nadenitsa, and Guvech

Transportation in Sofia

If you would like to use the cheapest possible transportation in Sofia, then use the Sofia metro. It can be a little bit confusing, but it will take you from the airport to the downtown area for less than 1 euro. This trip will take about thirty minutes. Always have your ticket within easy reach, as the ticket control might show up at any stop to check it.

The other options for transportation include taking a bus or a tram. In these cases, you’ll be able to buy tickets directly from the driver. Make sure to punch your ticket inside the yellow punchers located on the poles of the bus or tram, as this will validate it. Those who don’t have a valid ticket upon control check will be fined 30 leva.

First-time Sofia Travelers

7 Must-See Places in Sofia for a 1-3 Day Trip

It’s time to start our virtual journey of Sofia. To start, let’s look at seven places you must visit in Sofia if you’re short on time! 

#1: Boyana Church

In Bulgarian: Боянска църква музей (Boyanska tsarkva muzey)

This medieval Bulgarian Orthodox church is located at the base of Vitosha Mountain, in a region that is also called Boyana.

It was built in three stages, from the tenth century to the middle of the nineteenth century. There are 240 human images and 89 scenes depicted on its walls. UNESCO describes Boyana Church as “one of the most complete and perfectly preserved monuments of east European medieval art,” so it’s definitely worth visiting if you’re interested in medieval culture, architecture, and art. As this church is located in the outskirts of Sofia, it’s good to plan your visit ahead of time.

Boyana Church

#2: Alexander Nevsky Cathedral 

In Bulgarian: Катедрала “Свети Александър Невски” (Katedrala “Sveti Aleksandar Nevski”)

This Orthodox cathedral was built in a neo-Byzantine style in the nineteenth century and is named after Alexander Nevsky, a Russian saint. It displays the relics of the saint to the left of the altar. 

This church is located in the very center of Sofia, just behind the Bulgarian parliament and adjacent to St. Sofia Church. There are many other notable landmarks nearby, so you can plan to visit them all in a single day. Some of these locations include: 

  • The National Art Academy
  • The Sofia Opera and Ballet Hall
  • The National Gallery of Foreign Art
  • The Monument of the Unknown Soldier
  • A park with a small flea market in it

Bulgarian Parliament and the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral

#3: Rotunda of St. George 

In Bulgarian: Храм-ротонда “Св. Георги” (Hram-rotonda “Sveti Georgi”)

This small, round church was initially built as a Roman bath in the fourth century when the city of Serdica belonged to the Roman Empire, and was later transformed into an Orthodox church. Located in the city’s center, this is part of a larger archeological complex and is the oldest building in the Bulgarian capital. You’ll be able to see medieval frescoes inside and Roman streets outside.

Rotunda of St. George

#4: Earth and Man Natural Museum 

In Bulgarian: Национален музей “Земята и хората” (Natsionalen muzey “Zemyata i horata”)

This sight would definitely be attractive for geology-lovers as well as children who are interested in science, as it features collections of huge minerals and their derivatives. This museum is located in the neighborhood of Lozenets and is one of the largest mineralogical museums in the world.

The Earth and Man Natural Museum

#5: Kuklite (The Dolls) Art House 

In Bulgarian: Арт къща куклите (Art kashta kuklite)

This is a fascinating place for kids, containing more than 3,000 dolls from all over the world. It also offers weekly workshops explaining how to make a doll, though you’ll need to book in advance to attend one. If you’re traveling to Sofia with children, a visit here would be a great opportunity for them to see porcelain, ritual, modern, vintage, and antique dolls as well as marionettes. Young and old alike will be delighted by these whimsical doll displays! 

The museum is located in the center of Sofia, not too far from the Rotunda of St. George. You can add it into your schedule while you visit different landmarks located in this area. 

#6: Muzeiko 

In Bulgarian: Музейко (Muzeyko)

Muzeiko is a museum for children dedicated to science and the arts. The project cost twenty million dollars to get started, and today features over 130 games and activities that will help your little ones easily learn interesting science facts. There’s also a planetarium that has a show, so you can secure some time for this as well. This kids’ museum is located in the Students’ City neighborhood in Sofia.

#7: National Archaeological Museum 

In Bulgarian: Национален археологически музей (Natsionalen arheologicheski muzey)

The National Archaeological Museum is located in the center of Sofia, at the Atanas Burov Square.

This museum housed a mosque in the fifteenth century, but opened as a museum in 1905. It includes ancient Thracian, Greek, and Roman artifacts, as well as medieval books and collections. It’s appropriate for people of all ages who are interested in Bulgarian culture and history. A 3D virtual tour is available online.

Highly Recommended Places for a 4-7 Day Trip (or Longer)

Are you planning a longer stay? Great! This will give you ample time to see even more of the best places to visit in Sofia, Bulgaria. Here are a few that we recommend! 

#8: Eagles’ Bridge 

In Bulgarian: Орлов мост (Orlov most)

This bridge is located just below the Monument to the Soviet Army in the heart of Sofia. It’s called Eagles’ Bridge because of the four majestic iron eagles located on top of the pillars. Beneath the bridge, there’s a small river flowing. This bridge, together with the Lions’ Bridge, is among the most popular tourist destinations. Don’t miss it if you’re nearby!

#9: Lions’ Bridge 

In Bulgarian: Лъвов мост (Lavov most)

This gorgeous bridge is called Lions’ Bridge because of the four metal lions located on each of its pillars. The bridge goes over the Vladaya River, and it’s located on Maria Luiza Boulevard only a few meters from the Ladies Market (in Bulgarian: Женския пазар [Zhenskiya pazar]).

Lions’ Bridge

#10: Ivan Vazov National Theater 

In Bulgarian: Народен театър Иван Вазов (Naroden teatar Ivan Vazov)

This National Theater is built in a Viennese style and is located in the central City Garden. It’s decorated with statues of Apollo among the muses, which have golden instruments. The first play performed here was Vazov’s The Outcasts. The theater was damaged during World War II, but was later renovated to maintain the architecture and original appearance of the building. This landmark is one of the symbols of Bulgarian culture.

Ivan Vazov National Theater

#11: Roman Wall 

In Bulgarian: Римска стена (Rimska stena)

The actual Roman ruins can be found inside the hotel lobbies and in the metro. Strangely enough, although it’s called the Roman Wall, this wall was built by the Ottomans in the sixteenth century. It was part of a religious complex, from which only this stone gate remains. It’s located in the Lozenets region near the Saturday “Roman Wall” farmers’ market.

Roman Wall

#12: Sofia Opera and Ballet Hall 

In Bulgarian: Софийска опера и балет (Sofiyska opera i balet)

This hall has been occupied by the Sofia Opera since 1957. Tickets here are more affordable than those of halls in many other European cities. The building is decorated with multiple figures of performers, namely orchestra musicians and singers. It’s located in the city center.

#13: The Snail House 

In Bulgarian: Къща Охлюв (Kashta Ohlyuf)

The Snail House is the most extravagant building in Sofia, located in the district of Simeonovo. This colorful five-story building is built in the form of a giant snail, and its non-standard shape fits well with the surrounding environment. There are small butterflies and ladybugs on the roof, along with some other smaller snails. It was built in 2008 using entirely eco-friendly materials. It features no edges or corners, and no bricks were used in its construction.

#14: Sofia Graffiti Tour

In Bulgarian: София Графити Тур (Sofiya Grafiti Tur)

If you’re a graffiti-lover, this two-hour evening tour (Saturdays and Sundays only) would be an exciting experience. It takes you to the best urban art streets in Sofia with thriving graffiti scenes, and the best part is that you choose how much to pay for the tour!

#15: Borisova Gradina Park 

In Bulgarian: Княз-Борисова градина (Knyaz-Borisova Gradina)

This park is named after Bulgarian Tsar Boris III. It’s the most popular, the largest, and the oldest park in Sofia. Among the landmarks located in this park are: 

  • Lake Ariana
  • The national stadium “Vasil Levski”
  • The Bulgarian Army Stadium
  • The Lake with the Lilies
  • Many monuments of prominent Bulgarians
  • The Astronomical Observatory of Sofia University
  • The Maria-Louisa Swimming Complex
  • The Sofia TV Tower
  • The Mound of Brotherhood
  • The Japanese Corner

#16: Cherni Vrah 

In Bulgarian: Черни връх (Cherni vrah)

This is the highest peak of Vitosha Mountain, rising to 2290 meters (about 7513 feet). The best time for hiking this summit is in the summer, and there’s a guided hike offered for inexperienced climbers. Many locals enjoy spending a weekend on Vitosha Mountain while in the capital. This unforgettable hike will reveal amazing views over the city and other mountains.

Cherni Vrah

Bulgarian Survival Phrases for Travelers

To conclude our Sofia travel guide, let’s look at the most important Bulgarian phrases you’ll need to know before you travel to Sofia. You could write these phrases down in your diary or notebook and look them up whenever you need to speak with a Bulgarian, though memorizing them may give you the best experience.

  • Hello. – Здравейте (Zdraveyte)
  • Thank you. – Благодаря (Blagodarya)
  • Goodbye. – Довиждане (Dovizhdane)
  • Sorry. – Извинете (Izvinete)
  • Very good. (Perfect.) – Много добре (Mnogo dobre)
  • I don’t/can’t understand. – Не разбирам (Ne razbiram)
  • Where is the restroom? – Къде е тоалетната (Kade e toaletnata)
  • How much is it? – Колко струва (Kolko struva)
  • I want this. – Искам това (Iskam tova)
  • Help! – Помощ (Pomosht)

You can learn more practical phrases in our Survival Phrases lesson series!

How BulgarianPod101 Can Help You Master Bulgarian

BulgarianPod101 is excited to share with you this travel guide containing the best places to visit in Sofia, Bulgaria. Hopefully, this virtual tour around Sofia has given you the motivation and inspiration you need to make plans and visit Sofia yourself

If you need to learn some more survival phrases or conversational Bulgarian, our MyTeacher service would be of great help to you. You can choose your own private Bulgarian teacher, who will reveal to you the beauty of the language and make it easier for you to start understanding and speaking it.

Before you go, which of these Sofia attractions do you most want to see, and why? We look forward to hearing from you!

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