Bulgaria’s winter resorts are currently 40 per cent full and spa destinations are booked 100 per cent, Tourism Minister Mariana Nikolova said on January 15.
The Bulgarian mountain resort of Bansko opened its 2020/21 ski season on December 17, Pamporovo opened its ski season on December 19 and Borovets opened on December 28.
In Sofia, the ski season on Vitosha mountain is opening on January 15 with a night run down Vitoshko Lale at 6.30pm.
Bulgaria’s mountain ski resorts are subject to special rules to contain the spread of Covid-19.
Speaking during a visit to Bourgas, Nikolova said that 6400 charter flights were expected to arrive at Bourgas Airport in summer 2021.
“Our goal is to establish Bulgaria as a year-round tourist destination, and the Bourgas region provides an opportunity for various niche tourist trips,” Nikolova said.
She said that at the request of the industry, the Ministry of Tourism has prepared a special advertising campaign for the Russian and German markets.
Nikolova said that more than 4.5 million tourists spent the night in accommodation in Bulgaria in 2020. Of these, more than 3.3 million were Bulgarians and more than 1.2 million were foreigners, according to data from the Unified Tourist Information System.
The losses to domestic and inbound tourism amount to about 4.2 billion leva, Nikolova said, citing data from the National Statistical Institute and central Bulgarian National Bank for the first nine months of 2020.
The picture was expected to worsen, given the small number of tourism trips at the end of 2020. Nikolova said that it could not be ruled out that losses would exceed five billion leva.