My wife, who is from Sofia, and I live in the USA but are seriously thinking of living in Varna. Our pensions will go much further there than in Chicago. We are going to be in Sofia from May 19-28, 2018. In between, we may explore Varna as a possible place to retire. My wife speaks Bulgarian but I only speak Italian, Spanish and English, but willing to learn. Since we will have only a few days to explore, do you have any suggestions as to where in Varna would be good to either buy or rent if we settle there? We plan to retire in 2020.

It depends on what you are looking for. When I lived in Varna I lived in the most southern neighborhood- Galata. It is quiet, peaceful, has a few shops and a small supermarket, regular direct bus into the center. For me it was ideal.

I also recommend the next neighborhood up- Asparuhovo. It has a pleasant beach, several restaurants and cafes, more amenities (cell phone, internet shops etc). But again, it is somewhat quieter than the heart of the city (but just over the bridge from it). Also in that are is

Other than that, I would recommend looking north along the coast- Trakata and Vinitsa are both nice, although a bit more expensive than the southern neighborhoods.

My in-laws live on the west side of Varna, but it is heavily industrial and the traffic can be terrible most days, so I wouldn't recommend it as part of a relaxed retirement.

Thank you. We will check out those neighborhoods when we visit there in May.

On your way to Varna, you can take the southern route. It will be a bit longer, but you will have a chance to take a look at Plovdiv and Stara Zagora ... both are excellent alternatives to Varna, especially if you do not insist on the seaside.

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