349 Miles from Sofia, Bulgaria
The city of Istanbul has long served as a crossroads between Europe and Asia, and its cultural diversity can be seen in its grand architecture and the 500-year-old Grand Bazaar. Visitors come here for the stunning Byzantine and Ottoman buildings, relaxing hamam (Turkish baths) and amazing shopping.
192 Miles fro Sofia, Bulgaria
Located almost five hours north of Athens, Thessaloniki is known as Greece's "Second City," filled with a proud people with a long history. Some of the world's greatest civilizations came and went, conquering and rebuilding along the way. Go to Athens to see the Parthenon, but come here to walk the tree-lined streets and explore the beautiful Byzantine churches.
247 Miles from Sofia, Bulgaria
Belgrade has served as the capital of the Serbs since the Turks pushed them north in the early fifteenth century. Today, the city serves as a gateway to the rest of Serbia and home to royal palaces, catholic cathedrals, the National Museum and the biggest Eastern Orthodox church in the world.
350 Miles from Sofia, Bulgaria
Founded in the third century AD, Split is one of Europe's oldest cities and a highlight on any trip to Croatia. The bustling port city is dotted with spectacular Roman ruins, dating back to when it was Diocletian's retirement palace in 305 AD.
217 Miles from Sofia, Bulgaria
Bucharest, with its plentiful museums, diverse architecture and sidewalk coffee shops gives it the feeling of Paris without the high price tag. The Parliament Palace in the center of the city is one of the world's largest buildings with over 3,000 rooms. Budget travelers will find Bucharest both exotic and affordable.
374 Miles from Sofia, Bulgaria
Sarajevo's war-torn past has kept it largely off the tourist map, but budget travelers will find the capital of Bosnia-Herzegovina to be filled with beautiful Moorish architecture, cobbled streets, Orthodox churches, cultural diversity and very friendly people.
352 Miles from Sophia, Bulgaria
Montenegro is one of Europe's youngest countries, as it separated from Serbia in 2006. The tourism industry here is booming, thanks in part to beautiful beach resorts, historic walled cities and a fascinating cultural and religious mix, including Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholic and Muslim traditions.
225 Miles from Sophia, Bulgaria
The charming historic town of Ohrid, situated on the banks of Lake Ohrid, is considered the crown jewel of Macedonia. Stroll the streets, visiting old churches or stopping in for a bite to eat in a rustic sidewalk cafe in this town dominated by red-roofed buildings and ancient culture.
454 Miles from Sofia, Bulgaria
In recent years, Croatia shot to the top of trendy European destinations, yet it still has an off-the-beaten-path feel that appeals to adventure and budget travelers alike. Dubrovnik, the capital city, is one of the world's most picturesque fortified cities with a picture perfect spot on the coast.
530 Miles from Sofia, Bulgaria
While Ankara doesn't have the same overwhelming vibrancy of Istanbul, the city of four million is worthy of a trip for its own reasons. For starters, it's a great place to dig deeper into Turkey's history, as Ankara was home to Mustafa Kemal, the first president of Turkey.