Winter Tales in ski resort Bansko, Bulgaria
Pirin Mountain is simply breathtaking in the winter. Bansko is the biggest ski resort in Bulgaria and is definitely one of the best. With its 75 km pistes and cheaper prices than other European resorts, it has quickly become a popular destination for British tourists and solved the problem on where to go skiing in Europe. Every year the underground electronic music festival Horizon is held there during March. It’s a must-go event for every electronic music and mountain lover. Besides the electronic genre, performers of Hip Hop, Grime, Sound System Culture and Bashment are featured every year. 6 parties per day for 6 days happening in interesting venues like the Mountain Creek, the Secret mountain hotel, abandoned factories and of course a lot of bars and clubs will keep you entertained.
The prices, especially up in the resort, are what you expect to find in London. Which I admit is understandable since so much British people visit the resort. However, I feel responsible to tell you that if you decide to take a break from skiing or snowboarding be prepared to pay 3 euro for a cappuccino (from a Nescafe machine not the good stuff) and at least 10 euro for a meal. Down in the city is quite normal for such a touristic place and you have a lot of options there. You can get a main course meal in a restaurant for about 8 euro and fast food on every corner for 2-3 euro. Also, you could shop some groceries and cook for yourself (if you do have a kitchen in your hotel room).
One day ski pass is 30 euro and you have to pay additional 5 for the card itself. They also sell half a day passes which are valid from 12.30 pm and cost 24 euro. You can check the website with all the prices and more information. Renting a full ski gear is 8 euro per day despite what is written in the official website so I advise you to not rush it in order to save some beer money for example.
Be sure to explore the map of the ski pistes and lifts if you’re not that experienced or you might end up having to freestyle your way down. Or be carried on the back of the ski patrol which ridiculously enough happened this March to a friend of mine. And I was there. This will probably hunt me for the rest of my life – my phone was dead and I couldn’t take any pictures. C’est la vie.