GREAT IDEAS FOR PLACES TO VISIT AND ACTIVITIES TO PARTICIPATE IN WITH YOUR BABY/TODDLER/KID IN SOFIA
Foreigners in Sofia, new parents to the city or just visiting for a family vacation? Here are the best places you can visit with kids in Sofia. I have carefully selected them to be suitable to English (foreign) speakers or with no need to talk at all!
Play time and coffee
Stuart Little Kids Zone Cafe is great stay and play coffee shop near a big park in the city. It is designed for babies/toddlers. There are three large rooms filled with Montessori activities as well as trampolines, climbing wall for little ones and the opportunity to go wild and just run around or sit down and play with puzzles. All toys are made out of wood, heavy glass and kids friendly. This is a great place to throw a birthday party or take the kid to play while you get some work done. The place is far from peaceful during weekends, yet it is quite chill Mon-Fri (9.00-17.00). They organise „Mommy and Me“ time for babies dedicated to music – singing songs, dancing, playing around.
If you are looking for some outdoors play time for the kid while you work on your laptop, pay a visit to MaMaYo. The indoor play zone is small, but they organise cooking classes for toddlers and have a big yard for the kids to enjoy.
In the heart of Sofia you can find a magical bookstore café – Fox Book Cafe. The place has an entire collection of the best children books you can ask for in combination with delicious baked goods. This is the place where you can sign for „Mommy & Me“ time with your toddlers, in which children listen to stories, play games, dance to favourite songs. Even thou it happens in Bulgarian, it is designed for babies and it’s perfect for you to pick up on the language with the little one. The owner is fluent in English.
The British Craft Club of course!
British Craft Club occurs over the weekends and brings together good vibes, artsy project and lots of lots of game time. The teacher miss Lizzie is English native and creative and has many years of teaching background with children 4 to 9.
She is behind one of the best children`s book that explains depression in a child friendly manner Gloomy Baboony. The club gathers for 2.5 hours and works on a big craft projects as well as play games, read stories and keeps children entertained for the whole morning so you can enjoy a cup of tea with your loved one. You need to pre-sign for it as the place offers weekly subscription.
The city offers a few childrens` museums. Muzeiko is designed to help kids discover their love for science, history and biology. Walking around kids are asked to cause an earthquake jumping on platforms or help a volcano to erupt, they build machines, dig fossils or simply go to space. Spring, Summer and Autumn there is a mud garden outside so visitors can play with water and sand or jump in a muddy pond.
Museum of illusions is another kids favourite place you can visit and get some fun family pictures together.
Sofia Zoo is open all year around and it is a great place for some fun family time. You can walk around for hours and discover different animals or you can take a break and have some fun on the playgrounds in the Zoo park. It is a great way for children to meet in person their favourite book characters as real live animals. The tickets are under 10 lev and free for babies.
Sofia Opera House is hosting Opera for babies. Performers sing songs from favourite operettas and dance around in attractive costumes. There is also a quartet so you enjoy life music during the performances. You would need to buy tickets in advance as the event is quickly sold out each month.
Salt rooms for families
In Sofia there are several salt rooms that the whole family can visit and enjoy together. Halotherapy is not only a great preventive measure for the family health but fun time playing in the salt. The sessions for kids are approx. 30 mins in which they play in a room full of special salt that boosts the immune system and helps mama achieve clear skin due to the fine pilling of salt dust in the air. The kids salt rooms are filled with toys so the experience is like you are spending time at the beach playing with the sand.
Family friendly Animal farms
What is a kid friendly farm? Well it is a farm/private zoo that where visitors can pet, feed and enjoy close up meeting with fluffy friendly animals. There are two big ones you can visit located close to the city if you want to cuddle baby lama: Alice and Kid`s center Kondabaida .
Here is an activity for the kids with high levels of energy. In Sofia you can find a few trampoline parks in which the floor and walls are jumping are you can have a blast with. The pass is usually for an hour but even the wildest visitors tend to sit down and rest after the first 40 minutes. You can jump, roll, cartwheel, walk on the walls and more.
BABY SPA and Baby Swimming lessons
It is even better than it sounds! Babies under an year can enjoy relaxing floating in a special private pool filled with bubbles, toys and bright lights. They can just chill or be engaged in activity (first swimming lessons). The procedure ends with relaxing massage performed by medical specialist. If you are looking for actual swimming lessons there are a lot of places that offer baby classes. Usually it involves a lot of songs, trying to reach out the toys spread in the pool and guided exercise. Parents are in the pool together with babies up to 3 years old. You need to pre-sign for swimming lessons – most of the baby friendly pools have online schedule book ins.
The city offers a lot of play centres that you can visit with a kid. Usually they are paid by the hour and bigger kids could be left with the local adult supervision they offer. You can find those places in big malls or even some big restaurants. They are big playground areas with a lot of slides, trampolines, ball pits, swings, etc. You can enjoy a shopping spree or a romantic dinner with the kid playing next door.
Vitosha mountain is just a few minutes away from the city and even has public transport to take you on the top. It is a great way to spend the day hiking with the family. There are a lot of picnic locations as well as playgrounds build on the mountain. In case you want to warm up and have a home cooked meal there are a few huts you can visit. Hut September even has its own play room for the little ones. Over the weekends cars are not allowed to go to the mountain between 11:00 – 16:00 o`clock. If a location is starting to get packed with people police officers do not allow you to park in the zone and redirect you to another. You need to either go early/later or use the public transport.
You can find a few places to enjoy horse riding just outside of the city. Kids are welcomed to meet the majestic animals that live in the stables, pet them and help feeding them a snack. Here is our preferred equestrian base to visit with the whole family.
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