Bulgaria heads into a second long weekend in a row with a weather forecast that predicts more clouds and the occasional ray of sunlight, with motorists planning a getaway to Greece warned about a transport workers strike that could disrupt travel plans.
After a four-day weekend for Eastern Orthodox Christian Easter, which in Bulgaria included Good Friday on April 29 and Easter Monday on May 2 – incidentally also covering Labour Day on May 1 – the upcoming weekend will span three days as Bulgaria celebrates St George’s Day and Armed Forces Day on Friday May 6.
The weather forecasts include more rain at the weekend, with extensive clouds and the occasional thunderstorm, but some stretches of sunshine could also be expected. Rain was especially likely in central and eastern Bulgaria on May 6 and 7.
Temperature highs will be in the upper teens, rising to 20C-21C in central Bulgaria, throughout the weekend. Smolyan and the Rhodope Mountains in southern Bulgaria will be the main exception, with daily highs between 12C and 15C. The region will also register the coldest daily lows, with temperatures dropping to 2C-3C at night, while the rest of the country will see the lows range between 5C and 11C.
Heavy traffic out of Sofia is expected late on May 5 and the morning of May 6, going by the experience of previous long weekends, and a spike of inbound traffic into the city is expected in the afternoon and evening of May 8.
Travellers to Greece, however, should beware the general strike announced for May 8, which is expected to create traffic disruptions. Ferryboats are not scheduled to run, which could have an impact on travellers to the island of Thasos, a popular destination for Bulgarian tourists.
In Sofia, traffic restrictions have been put in place for May 6 armed forces parade. All parking is banned for sections of Oborishte, Moskovska, Lege, Knyaz Alexander 1, 11-ti Avgust and 15-ti Noemvri streets between 7am and 12.30pm, and no traffic will be allowed in the same areas between 7am and the end of the parade.
The parade is scheduled to feature fly-bys by Bulgarian Air Force fighter jets and helicopters, although poor weather could limit the fly-bys to helicopters only, as has happened repeatedly in recent years. In case that the fighter jets do participate in the festivities in Sofia, the MiG-29 planes will also carry out a fly-by over Plovdiv, Bulgaria’s second-largest city, sometime between 11am and 11.20am, reports in Bulgarian media said.
(Photo: Stephen Topp/flickr.com)