Visitor reviews for Borovets Ski Resort

Borovets Ratings

Overall: 3.7. Based on 106 votes and 186 reviews. Vote

Snowsure: 3.7

(1) Occasionally gets enough snow for skiing, (2) is often closed due to a lack of snow, (3) occasionally suffers from a lack of snow, (4) rarely suffers from a lack of snow, (5) Borovets is snowsure even in the poorest seasons.

Variety of pistes: 4.0

(1) The ski runs are featureless and unvaried, (3) the ski runs are varied but not extensive enough for a week, (5) Borovets has diverse and interesting pistes including forests and high alpine terrain.

Off-piste: 3.1

(1) No off-piste worth mentioning, (2) off piste is out-of-bounds, (3) some varied offpiste that stays fresh for one or two days, (5) a vast array of off-piste routes that can stay untracked for several days.

Scenery: 4.0

(1) An ugly resort in a bland setting, (3) average mountain views and resort, (5) a spectacular setting and a beautiful / historic resort town.

Access: 4.2

(1) At least one overnight stop, (2) requires a whole day, (3) requires more than half a day – you may have time for a few turns (4) arrive by lunchtime and ski all afternoon, (5) there is a main airport within an hour of Borovets.

Public Transport: 3.6

(1) There are no buses or taxis to Borovets, (3) there are slow or infrequent buses / trains available, (5) getting to the resort is easy with frequent bus / train connections.

Accommodation: 4.4

(1) No places to stay in/near Borovets, (3) a few places to stay in the resort, (5) a wide variety of accommodation suitable to suit all budgets.

Cheap Rooms: 3.9

(1) No budget accommodation available, (3) just one or two hostels so book ahead, (5) several cheap hostels and pensions available.

Luxury Hotels: 3.7

(1) No luxury accommodation available, (3) just one or two luxury hotels so book ahead, (5) several up-market hotels in Borovets.

Ski in/Ski out: 4.3

(1) The ski area is located far from any accommodation, (3) a free ski bus takes you to the ski area in a short trip, (5) Ski-in ski-out accommodation is available.

Childcare: 3.7

(1) There are no child care facilities at Borovets, (5) the resort has excellent child-care facilities including at least one reasonably priced creche.

Snowmaking: 3.6

(1) Borovets relies entirely on natural snow, (3) there are just a few snow cannons, (5) there are snowmaking facilities on all pistes.

Snow Grooming: 3.9

(1) There are no snow groomers at Borovets, (3) occasionally some pistes are left ungroomed and in a poor state, (5) all the runs at Borovets are groomed daily.

Shelter: 3.7

(1) there is nowhere to ski when it is windy or visibility is bad and lifts often shut, (3) there are some trees for poor visibility but main lifts sometimes close, (5) Borovets is mostly in forest where you can ski in flat-light and windy days, lifts rarely close.

Nearby options: 2.7

(1) If snow conditions are poor at Borovets, it will be poor everywhere nearby, (3) there are good alternatives within an hours drive, (5) other locations on the same lift pass provide a rich variety of snowsure ski conditions.

Regional rating: 4.0

(1) Borovets usually has poor snow conditions compared to other resorts in region, (3) has average conditions for the region, (5) usually has the best snow conditions in the region.

Lift Staff: 3.6

(1) The staff at Borovets are rude or unhelpful, (5) lift staff at Borovets are pleasant, cheerful and eager to help.

Crowds/Queues: 3.4

(1) the resort is always busy and there are usually long lift queues, (3) it is quiet apart from occasional weekends and school holidays, (5) it is uncrowded and lift queues are very rare.

Ski Schools: 4.2

(1) No ski schools available, (2) one or two ski schools but local language only, (3) a few ski schools but book early for multi-lingual instructors, (4) plenty of ski schools and multi-lingual instructors available, (5) excellent ski schools with friendly multi-lingual ski instructors.

Hire and Repairs: 4.2

(1) Nothing can be sourced, not even ski-wax or ptex. (3) there are some ski shops but rentals need to be booked in advance, (5) good quality ski equipment can be purchased or hired and overnight repairs are possible.

Beginners: 4.1

(1) Beginners can only watch others ski and snowboard, (3) a few gentle slopes but beginners will get bored in less than a week, (3) Vast areas of gentle terrain.

Intermediates: 4.2

(1) No intermediate terrain at Borovets, (3) intermediate skiers will get bored after a few days, (5) vast areas of cruising runs.

Advanced: 3.7

(1) Nothing for advanced skiers and snowboarders, (3) enough steep terrain for a few days with some good offpiste, (5) Enough steep terrain and offpiste areas to entertain advanced skiers for at least a week.

Snow Park: 3.1

(1) Not even a kicker at Borovets, (3) average sized park quite well looked after, (5) huge park area and expertly crafted pipes, jumps and boardercross trails.

Cross-country: 3.3

(1) There is nowhere to go for cross-country skiing around Borovets, (3) there are some cross country trails available, (5) the area features many spectacular and well maintained cross-country trails.

Luge/Toboggan: 2.2

(1) No designated luge or toboggan runs, (3) there are toboggan runs that open quite often, (5) Borovets has long and well maintained luge / toboggan facilities suitable for all ages.

Mountain Dining: 3.7

(1) Nowhere to buy food by the pistes, (3) some places to eat up on the mountain but they are often busy and expensive, (5) there is a variety of excellent mountain eateries right next to the slopes to suit all budgets.

Eating: 4.2

(1) Bring your own food, there isn't even a shop. (5) A wide variety of places to eat and drink in the resort, from fast food to fancy restaurants.

Apres-Ski: 4.2

(1) Nothing to do, not even a bar, (3) there are a few bars in the resort but nothing special, (5) clubs and bars stay open until very late and have a friendly atmosphere.

Other Sports: 3.6

(1) No sports facilities at all apart from ski lifts, (3) resort has just a small public swimming pool, (5) resort has all kinds of sports facilities, including a full-size swimming pool.

Entertainment: 3.3

(1) Besides the snow and walking there is nothing to do here, (3) the non-skier will find things to do for few days but may become bored after a week, (5) the resort area is a fascinating place to visit, regardless of winter sports.

Winter Walks: 3.5

(1) Very limited walking and no snowshoe trails, (3) a couple of designated scenic walking/snowshoe trails, (5) extensive and diverse winter walking trails for all abilities.

Ski Pass Value: 3.7

(1) A 1 week ski pass is overpriced compared to the number of lifts available, (3) the ski pass is averagely priced and covers a reasonable number of lifts, (5) ski passes are excellent value for money and cover a lot of lifts spanning a big area.

Value (National): 4.0

(1) Overall, Borovets is one of the most expensive ski resorts in the country and not worth the money, (3) overall represents average value for money, (5) overall offers the best value resort in the country.

Value (Global): 4.1

(1) Overall, Borovets is one of the most expensive ski resorts in the world, (3) overall it offers pretty average value for money compared to resorts from other countries, (5) internationally the resort offers excellent value for money.

Show all 35 ratings

December 31, 2006
Kerry from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
We just got back from a week in Borovets. We stayed in the Samokov hotel and the people couldnt have been friendlier! we had skiing lessons booked as it was our first time skiing, and the ski instructors are amazing!! Being beginners we were nervous about learning to ski but they take it at your pace, yet pushing you so that in 6 days we were skiing on a blue run, no way would we have done that without the lovely Kamen!! The hotel was clean, tidy and right in the centre of town, and very close to the gondala so that we didnt have to walk too par with all our ski stuff, unlike other hotels. Our main concern was what the food would be like as we were told that it was horrid, we were pleasently surprised as it was on a good night, nice. Everything is cheap but be careful were you eat as they arent the cleanest of places, but still very welcoming! The only bad thing i can say about the holiday is that at our Christmas dinner a waitress attempted to steal a member of our parties camera, so just keep a close eye on your belongings at all times. As the Bulgarians dont get paid hugely they rely on tips at the end of the week, so if your ski instructor is good I would recomend that you tip as it makes life a little easier for them. Apparently a good tip is about £10 per person at the end of the week we turns out a little under £2 per day which isnt too bad at all. Overall our week was amazing and we are planning on going back next year as intermediates!! What a scary thought! The resort is beautiful, set in a pine tree forest which really sets off the magical feel of the place. I would recommend this place to anyone! chio chio xxx (we were patient enough to try and learn a bit of bulgarian from our instructors)
December 26, 2006
Kim Oultram from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
We are staying in the Hotel Rila In January, has any one put their children ( ours are 6 and 4)in the hotel creche? as we could not get ours in the Inghams creche,
March 12, 2006
Gavin Greenway from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
The wife and I returned from Borovets last night and got home early this morning. We had a superb time. I wanted to write this summary as prior to booking we took a certain leap of faith in selecting Bulgaria, we had odd visions that the low price meant we were settling for a somewhat decayed Siberian post communist time warp. We couldn’t get a feel for what it might be like from previous reports, so this is my effort and I hope it helps you. Travel: We went with Neilson, but honestly I think they are all similar. The hotels are used by all operators and there seem to be two main ski-schools, the Samokov school and Borosports. The flight times were not perfect for us because we arrived at nearly midnight and had to be selecting skis and poles at 9am on the Sunday, so very little time to familiarise yourself with the resort or hotel. If you get a choice go on an earlier flight (to/from Gatwick). We were the last flight out on the Saturday and the last to return. It meant we arrived late and had to wait a long time in the hotel once checked out, always gauling and depressing once the holiday is over and everyone else has gone on earlier flights. Hotels: We stayed at the Rila which I could easily recommend, but the Samokov and the Ella seemed ok as well. The resort is small so access to the slopes is good from anywhere within it. If you are a complete beginner go to the Rila as the slopes you need literally end in the lobby bar of the hotel. If you are a little more intermediate the Samokov is just closer to the gondola and the higher slopes. Whatever you chose the hotels are only 200 yards apart anyway, but if early or late season maybe the Samokov is better because the gondola will have access to altitude. In the Rila, we never ate the evening meal we just went out to eat. The breakfast was good every morning with identical choices. From cereals, breads to frankfurters and eggs, nothing amazing, all welcome though. Food: We were very impressed. We did not have any cold meals as some other reports might suggest from Bulgarian custom. All the exterior restaurants had large menus and you would be hard pressed not to find something to like. Lovely thin crust pizzas, steaks or traditional Bulgarian goulash to deep fried tongue...I won’t give too many recommendations because picking a restaurant can be such great fun and personal choice, but the exception I would make is to try the Turkish flat bread in Harry Potters steak house. Its seriously about the size of a small pillow and comes out steaming away on a hot plate……mmmmm. Ski runs/equipment: I was told that as an upper intermediate level skier I would get bored after a whole week in Borovets. Sorry I can’t agree with such European alpine snobbery. I was very satisfied, although the weather could play a big part in this issue. On the first 2 days the gondola (which is the only link to half the resort and the highest runs) was closed due to a pubic holiday then high winds. When the gondola was not working the remaining (lower) slopes were crowded. It was also warm on those two days so the piste was getting dog eared. The rest of the week the gondola was working and this offered ample opportunity to most if not all levels. I really question how many people demand the kind of off slope skiing seen in extreme videos, but there were many pathways between the trees for those up for it. We had 40cm of new snow fall in one night which was fantastic. With conditions changing rapidly from strong sun, through heavy snow/fog and back to sunshine I never felt bored, and felt continually challenged. My skis worked fine although I took my own boots; the wife hired all the gear. No problems. The ski depot where stuff was left overnight was 50 yards from the front door of the hotel. Couldn’t be better, therefore one of the potential worst bits of skiing, lugging around all the gubbings, hitting yourself in the head or shin with skis, was avoided – priceless. The hardware (chairlifts etc) was all either new or in great condition. Apparently this was necessary to get up to EU membership for next year. No complaints whatsoever and was as good or better than stuff in France. One gondola, 3 chairlifts the remaining being drag lifts. The runs up until 2000 metres were just beautiful tree lined, covered in the white stuff. Above that the scenery was more tundra like, but no less impressive. Nightlife: Borovets seemed to be all things to all people and that’s quite a claim. Me and the wife are late 20’s early 30’s so we aren’t strangers to heavy noisy nights, but this time we were there as a couple only and to improve our skiing. We were worried that there would be too many families, or too many groups of youngsters out to the small hours waking us up. There were both sets actually, but we had a room at the back of the Rila away from the bars and didn’t have any problems. Every different demographic group sort of kept themselves to the themselves and did their own thing. Plenty of bars and late nights out if you want them (some in my ski group were getting home at 9.30am just in time to change back into ski gear) and others in our ski group managed to ditch their kids all day in the kindergarten in the morning and pick them up exhausted in the evening. Ski instruction: This was my only gripe. The wife was between groups (too good for one, not good enough for another) so after day 2 decided on private tuition. The official Borosport price was 30 quid for 4 hours which is just so reasonable. The problem was that the instructor was changed mid way through a lesson, and had to come down in the middle of a run on managers orders. After an ensuing row between us and the Borosport manager, who had double booked the instructor, we were left hours short. I tried to organise another instructor privately through my own instructor but he failed to show up for our group lesson and switched off his phone. He made many excuses and said he had run out of phone credit, but in truth we had seen him very drunk the night before. I have no worries with hy-jinks, but you don’t let 10 people down like that if you are a professional. It wasted precious practice days and ruined a great ski tutor group atmosphere. This experience is maybe not typical, we heard other bad stories but met yet others who loved their instructors. In general I just surmise that the school is not organised that well, in comparison to European standards, maybe Samokov ski school is better. In Conclusion: Bulgaria and Borovets is a real find. If you are looking for a cheap and quaint place to ski this is definitely it. Bulgaria appears to be advancing fast yet retains a certain innocence. This innocence could be seen in the cosy chalet restaurants, with roaring open fires and wooden interior, or the people (the young locals are still in that impressed with their mobile phone/ringtone stage that most of us grew out of in 2002). The food is good and everyone is very friendly. I would go again even though I normally like to try different countries if possible. Don’t think twice about going to Bulgaria, it’s great. If you have already been, you will know what I am talking about.
February 23, 2006
Martin & Jess Turk & family from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
Just spent half-term week at Hotel Rila, Borovets. Yes it was busy, but where isn't during school holidays? Had an absolute ball. Brilliant ski-school instructor, Alex (small but good), looked like Frankie Detorri. We made some great new mates that we plan to keep in touch with. The hotel was perfectly adequate, rooms cleaned everyday and fresh linen, what more do you want? Loads of food available, we went half-board, all food self-service so it's up to you whether you're hungry or not. Contrary to popular belief there are plenty of ATM machines all with good exchange rate and they take all debit cards, don't know where the rumour that you have to take cash came from. The runs were brilliant for us we all left as intermediates which is no mean feat when working with a mixed group, all ages and sizes. The Gondola was only going half way for the last 3 days, sadly, so the rest of the slopes were crowded, but we're hardly going to complain when it was shut for safety reasons. Would gladly recommend Borovets to everybody and will definitely be going back. Lovely place, super people, brilliant holiday.
February 22, 2006
Judith Verburg from Ski Netherlands Netherlands
Just back from Borovets. Had a great time!! The first days snowed all day and it was very cold. The runs were good, but the last two days it wasn't that good anymore. There were a lot of beginners, but if you took the red runs, it was good skiing, not too busy. Met a nice guy from Manchester, he stayed in hotel Moura. So if you read this and you know that guy or you are that guy. Greetz from me!!!! I will go back to Borovets one day! It is a very nice place to spend the holidays (if you like skiing).
February 21, 2006
P Gregg from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
Just returned from Borovets, 18 feb/06. It snowed for the first 3 days, which was great. Unfortunately a thaw set in on the Fri & Sat, the snow on the lower slopes turned very sticky and I gave up skiing. The conditions were not good for the last 2 days. On 1 of the black runs, you could see grass showing. But don't let that put you off visiting Borovets. If it does snow over the next couple of weeks, the blue and red runs are great. I stayed half board in Edelweiss, the food was pretty good and I defanitely would go back again.
February 14, 2006
Judith Gamse from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
It was the coldest week in a very, very long time - the gondola opened on Sunday, then closed Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday... A good flight and we arrived on Saturday night at about 8.30pm, dumped our stuff at the Iglika and went straight around to White Magic where we got a lovely greeting from Christo. Sunday was ski school - got up early, got our ski packs from the reps and then went in search of Tosh - found him and got him as my ski instructor for the week. It was a beginners class, but I was an "advanced beginner" - needed to get the ski legs back first before going into an intermediate class. We spent the first day on the Rila slopes just doing the basics - and in the afternoon we were already on the drag lift there - no longer side stepping up the slopes like most of the classes. On Monday morning, we went to the steeper nursery slopes over the other side and spent the morning there, and in the afternoon, the group took the Sitnayakovo chair lift and did the 6km run. I didn't join in with this.... not my favourite run.... spent the afternoon at White Magic instead. Tuesday the group were back on the Sitnayakovo run - but did a couple of practices on the small drag lift at the top there first. I decided to try blades on Tuesday - I'm not a blades person I've decided - I'm glad I only rented them for the week and not bought them. We were practicing traversing the blue at the top of the Sitnayakovo - two turns, wait for th rest of the group, carry on - one of the class went into me - had I been on skis I'd have stayed upright, but with blades on, as soon as the bodyweight got released, down I went. Came down on the chair lift and joined the group at the end of the run. Did the Inghams Pizza and a Quiz night and our team came third. Wednesday - missed the group so checked the e-mails, went to lunch at White Magic and got convinced by friends to go on the Sitnyakovo 6km with them. Only fell once and that was on a piece of sheet ice where I didn't have the momentum to keep going. I got to the part where it crosses the black run my friends refused to let me take my skis off - I've a new nickname - Sheeeeeeeeet scared of Borovets... It was such a feeling of elation doing it - back to White Magic in the evening. Thursday - the gondola was open at last - went up to the top and rather than just do one run on the long drag, we went straight off down to the red run. No falls - great fun. Schussing down the blue though didn't half judder my legs. Spent the whole day up there and it was so nice. Got the skidoo taxi up to the gondola again - it's gone up, it's 5 lev this year!!! Friday - last day on the slopes and Tosh took us up the Rila 4 man chair. Oh no, that was really scary... Sheeeeeeeeettt scared of Borovets was in her element - I looked at the slope and just thought to myself "gulp" I can't do that - only one tiny fall - actually going out from the blue run out onto the red bit - the sheer steepness of it unnerved me. I lay there in the snow just scared out of my wits and laughing - being stupid really as I knew I could do it. Got down nearly the whole way without incident - got cramp in my legs just before it turns off onto the green so came down on my bum from the red across to the green then skiied the rest of the way down (including across the black and reds) In the afternoon, we went up the Gondola again and I just pottered around on the baby drag lift - the rest of the group went on the red, but by then, my legs had had enough. Did the baby blue about 4 or 5 times but I know when I've had enough. Got the skidoo taxi back up and took some photos. Ski diploma presentation in the evening and we also all went out to Black Cat for dinner with Tosh. Got a bottle of sprite split over me by the waitress and when I asked for a replacement, she tried to charge me. In the UK they'd have been sent a dry cleaning bill!!! Flight home was fine - except a 3 hour delay so we didn't get indoors until 2am!!! should have been home by about 10.30pm. Had the best time for ages - I'm slowly getting my confidence and tackling more challenging runs. Met a fantastic group of people and will definitely be going back again - but I'm going to try Arinsal in 2007, just to see the difference. Hope that helps everyone. I went for massages at the Samokov when I was staying at the Iglika, it was 25 lev for a massage at the Samokov and 40 lev at the Iglika - 5 massages in a week, that's 75 lev saved!!!
February 14, 2006
sue from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
Attention of Heather who went to Borovets from 4-10 Feb 06 - where did you book your holiday for such a good price - sounds really good - just paid £600 for same.
February 14, 2006
Heather from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
I went with 3 others, 4-10 February 2006. 3 of us were beginners and 1 advanced. We had a really terrific time on every front. The slopes and runs were super. Yes, they were suitable for novices, but our experienced pal (and others) thought there was plenty of interest on the reds and blacks. The scenery both high and low ranged fron spectacular to beautiful/peaceful. The gondola, chair lifts and button lifts all worked, which meant access everywhere. People warm, welcoming and charming. Ski instructors seemed excellent, clear, sympathetic and appropriately challenging. Not sure what all the complaints about food are about (though sympathise with a duff Xmas dinner!)...though not a huge amount of variety in the hotels all the grub is fresh and good and the restaurants are just fine. Hotels are clean, warm, efficient and welcoming. Borovets is an absolute bargain. Our whole holiday including ski pass, ski hire, ski school, hotel, half board, flight, transfer, drinks and meals in Borovets, a couple of excursions (Samokov and Sofia) and a first rate massage cost just under £350. I highly recommend it for groups, singles and families. Oh...and please buy the socks of the grannies on the main road...rather heart breaking seeing them in the cold selling their knitwear for a few lev.
February 06, 2006
miro from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
Went to Borovets in the last week of January. Stayed in a private villa 15 minutes away and between 2 ski areas. It was lovely. Huge private ground, stunning views, white fluff everywhere. Some of us decided to stay one day in the ski chalet and chill out, just looking at the scenery, watching some ski dvds and having plenty of drinks in our own very cool tavern downstairs. It was a good experience. The snow was just perfect. Very cold and sunny. What more do you want. We managed to ski at another small resort, Maliovitsa. The runs were good for a day. Very quite place and an absolute bargain. Lift passes there were around 3 pounds. To our suprise on the way back from Maliovitsa we tried the run in Govedarci which is fantastic. The choice of a ski chalet was a good one. We had freedom to do what we wanted. Highly recommended place with friendly people. Now looking at the weather forecast around the mountains in Europe I can say that Bulgaria is quite lucky with such good cover, even more than the French resorts like: Val Thorens, Meribel etc. Looking to fly there but maybe have to consider Bulgaria again for a second time this season.