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The Best Bulgarian Podcasts for Learning Bulgarian Easily

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Learning a foreign language is a big challenge for anyone. However, using podcasts as a study tool can greatly facilitate the learning process. Why? Because podcasts make learning fun, and if your study time is enjoyable, you can definitely learn much faster. 

Listening to a Bulgarian podcast is an entertaining way to learn—and immerse yourself in—the language. Moreover, there are podcasts you can start enjoying right away, even as a beginner-level Bulgarian learner. These podcasts will help you get used to the language’s sounds, specific phrases, and overall structure.

Another great way to stay motivated is to find a partner who can accompany you throughout your learning process. BulgarianPod101 aims to be the ultimate language study partner, and it’s our goal to help you learn Bulgarian in the fastest, easiest, and most fun way possible. To help you advance with ease, we’ve prepared this list of the five best Bulgarian podcasts for learning the language, divided into three categories: beginner, intermediate, and advanced.

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Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Bulgarian Table of Contents
  1. Different Listening Opportunities for Bulgarian Language Learners
  2. Benefits of Using Podcasts to Learn Bulgarian
  3. The Best Podcasts for Learning Bulgarian
  4. Tricks to Learn Bulgarian More Effectively with Podcasts
  5. How can BulgarianPod101 help you learn Bulgarian?

1. Different Listening Opportunities for Bulgarian Language Learners

The best way to learn a foreign language is to live in the country where that language is spoken. However, if you don’t have the opportunity to live in Bulgaria, there are still numerous opportunities available to help you quickly improve your listening comprehension and feel just like you’re living here! Let’s take a look at them:


A Woman Tapping the YouTube Play Button

YouTube is a great source of educational videos.

  • Watching Bulgarian television shows and movies can help you advance even further in the language. The more engaging the plot, the easier it will be to immerse yourself in the Bulgarian language and culture. 
  • Listening to songs and concerts is another great way to study Bulgarian, especially if there are subtitles. Nursery rhymes are especially appropriate; you can try translating and comprehending the whole song, which is especially doable if there are key words or phrases in place.

A Woman Tapping the YouTube Play Button

Why not listen to some Bulgarian songs?

  • Some people prefer to study a foreign language by following the news. If this sounds like something you’d like to try, tuning in to the newscast of any popular news company in Bulgaria would work. Moreover, you have the option to watch the news with videos, listen via podcast or radio, or read news articles. 
  • Reading Bulgarian books is another great way to practice. BulgarianPod101 can help you break into Bulgarian reading with our fun miniature books
  • Making some native Bulgarian friends can greatly enhance your learning endeavors, as you’ll be able to listen to native Bulgarian speech on a regular basis. 
  • Podcasts give you the opportunity to listen to specific situations and how words are used in context. Podcasts are usually theme-oriented, so you can choose a topic you’re interested in and learn related vocabulary.
  • The BulgarianPod101 website, YouTube channel, and mobile app are effective tools for learning Bulgarian. They contain all you need to advance and improve—from beginner-level materials to advanced-level lessons and exercises—so you can gain more confidence in listening, speaking, reading, and writing.

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Make BulgarianPod101 your language partner.

2. Benefits of Using Podcasts to Learn Bulgarian

Regular podcast listening can provide a range of benefits, especially for people who would like to learn a foreign language. How can listening to podcasts in Bulgarian help you? Here are five benefits you can expect to experience:

  • Podcasts present information in a convenient and easy-to-understand format. You can listen to them anywhere, and you can even subscribe to your favorite podcasts so that new episodes will automatically be sent to you.
  • Podcasts are very listener-oriented, making the information personal. You can find podcasts in audio or video formats, both of which are much more fun than reading a Bulgarian textbook. 
  • Podcasts are an affordable way to study a language. This is because podcasts are digitally delivered, which reduces costs associated with paper, postage, and printing.
  • Podcasts are portable, which means that you can download them onto any convenient media player and take them with you.
  • Podcasts help you effectively use your time, since you can listen to them while you do other things at home or at work. 

3. The Best Podcasts for Learning Bulgarian

Now, let’s take a look at the best Bulgarian podcasts for studying Bulgarian. We’ve divided them into three categories based on the learner’s proficiency level.

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Beginner

BulgarianPod101

BulgarianPod101 is a language learning platform that offers thousands of audio and video lessons, as well as podcast episodes that teach you not only the basics of the Bulgarian language but also more advanced concepts. 

These podcast episodes will help you create a foundation upon which to build your future progress. By watching and listening to our podcast, you’ll learn the key grammar points, interesting facts about Bulgarian grammar, vocabulary, and more.

In addition, many of our podcast episodes allow you to practice your language skills through natural dialogues, exercises, and tests. This practical and personal approach makes us an excellent resource for improving your language skills and gaining more self-confidence when communicating with native Bulgarian speakers.

Besides podcasts, BulgarianPod101 also offers additional resources that you can access upon subscription. Here’s an overview of our plans and prices: 

  • Free: $0/mo.
  • Basic: $8/mo.
  • Premium: $25/mo.
  • Premium PLUS: $47/mo.

Colloquial Bulgarian

Colloquial Bulgarian offers numerous downloadable audio files for beginner-level learners, so you can download them onto any device and listen to them at your convenience. As the name suggests, their purpose is to teach you colloquial Bulgarian that will help you communicate freely with locals.

The podcast includes basic grammar points, and you can find additional resources on their website: lesson summaries, glossaries, and more. All the audio files are free of charge, but textbooks are going to cost you.

50 Languages: Bulgarian for Beginners

There are 100 downloadable podcast episodes for beginners, containing the most basic language concepts. The series covers a number of topics, so you can pick whatever you’re interested in—numbers, months, adverbs, and the list goes on. 

Intermediate 

The Bulgarian History Podcast

This is a great source of Bulgarian history podcasts mostly recorded in English. You can tune in to get a lot of information on the history, culture, and language of Bulgarian people, which will help you become immersed in their world and understand them better.

New episodes are regularly being uploaded—once every two weeks—and each one has a length of about 30 minutes. There are currently more than 100 episodes available, so you have a wide selection to choose from. 

Advanced

SBS Bulgarian

SBS Bulgarian is a great source of world news as well as stories related to Bulgarian culture, politics, sports, interesting events, etc. They’re recorded in the Bulgarian language, so they could serve as a useful comprehension exercise for advanced-level learners who are preparing to take Bulgarian language proficiency exams. Each podcast is about ten minutes long, and the platform is updated weekly with 4-5 (or more) new episodes.

4. Tricks to Learn Bulgarian More Effectively with Podcasts

There are some powerful tricks you can apply in order to learn Bulgarian more effectively using podcasts. Here are four suggestions:

#1: Ensure that the material you choose fits your level.

Many new language learners try to use podcasts aimed at advanced speakers and soon become disappointed with the results. In their opinion, the speakers talk too fast, so they cannot understand even the main idea of the talk. Instead of choosing beginner-level podcasts, they give up using podcasts as a way of language learning altogether. 

To avoid such a fate, we recommend starting with simple Bulgarian podcasts for beginners and working your way up. This will introduce you to basic vocabulary, phrases, and grammar concepts that you can use to build a solid foundation. In addition, the hosts tend to speak more slowly so you can better understand what’s being said. 

Instead of biting off more than you can chew, start with beginner-level podcasts for the most efficient learning experience.

A Girl Biting into a Pastry

Don’t bite off more than you can chew. 

#2: Look at the whole context.

Unlike vocabulary lists or lessons, where words are given out of context, podcasts are a great way to hear them in context and figure out how to use them. They provide you with the opportunity to look at the big picture and to see the role that each specific word plays. This gives you the level of language practice you need to have steady progress.

Don’t try to comprehend the meaning of every single word, as that’s not your goal at the beginning. Just try to understand the general points of what the speaker is talking about. To do that, answer the following questions:

  • Who are the participants in the conversation?
  • What situation are they talking about?
  • (If it’s a video) What are the surroundings? What context clues can I gain from them?

#3: Note the use of specific keywords.

Keywords provide you with an idea of what’s being spoken about. This is crucial because you can’t learn to speak well until you can understand what others are saying. It’s just like how babies learn to speak—they first learn to understand what others say to them. 

You might not get all the details, and you might even get many things wrong. The important thing is that you understand the main idea. Over time, your comprehension level will significantly improve.

#4: Dig into the language specifics.

In order to learn the Bulgarian language with podcasts, you’ll have to take a more active approach than just listening. You should be prepared to listen to the same podcast several times over, only moving forward when you can understand most of what’s being said or taught. You may face different conjugations, verbs, tenses, adjectives, etc. 

You can take notes of all the new information you get, keeping in mind that it takes about half an hour to fully understand 90 seconds of foreign-language content. So don’t rush. Move slowly, and the results will be very satisfying. 

5. How can BulgarianPod101 help you learn Bulgarian?

We hope you found our overview of the best Bulgarian podcasts helpful, and that you now see how practical it can be to learn Bulgarian by listening to podcasts. 

Although it might be challenging in the beginning, podcasts are an affordable and fun way to learn not only the basics of the language but also more advanced concepts. They provide information in an easy-to-digest way, and new vocabulary is used in context so you can really get used to the language, understand what’s being said, and start practicing on your own.  

BulgarianPod101 provides tons of useful podcasts and other lesson materials to help you reach your Bulgarian language learning goals. Moreover, our Premium PLUS students have access to one of our most intuitive features: MyTeacher. With MyTeacher, you get a personal teacher who can explain the specifics and even provide you with personalized exercises. 

We would be happy to hear your feedback about this article. Please don’t hesitate to share your thoughts with us! 

Which of these top Bulgarian podcasts are you most excited to start listening to? Do you know of any good ones we didn’t include? Let us (and your fellow Bulgarian learners) know in the comments below. 

Happy learning!

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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!

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