Sofia National Gallery
Locate the dispersed venues with ease on a city tour, which passes by their imposing facades in combination with other Sofia highlights. Alternatively, head inside for a closer glimpse of the Palace’s temporary displays, the Kvadrat 500’s historical exhibitions, 15 centuries of iconography at the Museum of Christian Art, the Museum of Socialist Art’s Soviet relics, or the Sofia Arsenal’s contemporary collection. The homes of Tanev, Nedkova, and Lazarov are also open to visitors.
Things to Know Before You Go
Save money by purchasing a combined ticket if you plan to visit more than one site in a day.
Entry is free across all Sofia National Gallery spaces for those with physical disabilities, as well as children under the age of 12.
With a range of work on display across the gallery’s five main museums, the institution is popular with all manner of history buffs, art lovers, and culture vultures.
How to Get There
The gallery’s first and foremost location is the former royal palace on Knyaz Alexander I Square, which is a 30-minute walk from Sofia Central station, or less than a 10-minute walk from Serdika metro station. Other branches are scattered across the city; take advantage of city tours with round-trip transfer to visit with ease.
When to Get There
All the main National Gallery sites are open Tuesday to Sunday, excluding national holidays. Temperatures in Sofia reach their peak in August and September, so take advantage of the air-conditioned spaces to escape the daytime heat while sightseeing.
From Palace to Gallery
Construction of the Royal Palace began after Bulgaria’s liberation from the Ottoman Empire and was completed in 1882. The luxurious building blended modern styles with classic European influences and housed the royal family until the abolition of the monarchy in 1946. In the meantime, the National Gallery’s first premises were completely destroyed by Allied bombs. In 1953, the former palace was granted to the gallery by the communist state.
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- Amphitheater of Serdica
- Sofia National Archaeological Museum
- Ivan Vazov National Theatre
- Sofia Church of St. George (St. George Rotunda)
- Alexander Nevsky Cathedral
- St. Sofia Church
- Sofia National Gallery (Kvadrat 500)
- Central Sofia Market Hall (Halite)
- Sofia Synagogue
- Monument to the Soviet Army
- Vitosha Boulevard (Vitoshka)
- Bulgarian National Museum of Military History
- Museum of Socialist Art
- Sofia National History Museum
- Boyana Church