Visitor reviews for Borovets Ski Resort

Borovets Ratings

Overall: 3.7. Based on 103 votes and 185 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: 3.6

(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: 3.6

(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

March 17, 2010
Simon from Ski United Arab Emirates United Arab Emirates
My son and I have just had a last minute 3 day/4 night ski break in Borovets. We are used to more expensive French/Italian resorts so we can compare. We stayed at the Hotel Rila in a studio on half board. Overall, we were very impressed. We were lucky with the snow. It snowed each evening and each morning and it was sunny for skiing. The ski conditions were great. Not bad for mid-March. Not a lot of runs but enough for 3 days. The red and black runs to the hotel were good and it is literally ski to door. The hotel was good for the price and the room overlooked the ski runs. Food was ok. Not excellent but certainly not bad and there was as much as you can eat. The resort is quaint and old with character. The negatives to us were very small. Some noise at night from the street bars in front of the hotel, the hotel, all restauarnts and all bars are full of smoke and smokers. All locals appear to be employed as Security Guards which gives you the impression that there is a lot of crime although we saw none. Ski equipment is cheap and usable but not the best quality. Not one person, the whole time, said thank you. There are adult clubs and strip bars but it is easy to walk by. Overall, a good, very cheap ski holiday.
March 04, 2010
caol from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
Went to Borovets half-term just gone - had a really good holiday and skiing was mainly good apart from getting a bit icy at the end of the week. Slopes were great have previously been skiing in Italy and Pomporovo in Bulgaria. Ski instructor Georgi was excellent - need to get him next year. We stayed in the Olymp Hotel, the food wasn't too good but the spa facilities are excellent. The restaurants in the resort were good. See you next year. Carol
March 01, 2010
Phil Jones from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
Really awful! Just returned from 7 days at Hotel Rila in Borovets, Bulgaria. I should probably say that I have only ever skied in France, Austria and Switzerland. By comparison Borovets is not good. If I were offered a free holiday in the same place, I would not be tempted. Our group consisted of 3 men, age 40 to 45. The low budget nature of the resort and in particular hotel Rila attracts large numbers of English people, many with children. Everyone seems to smoke throughout the hotel. Bars in the resort are "pick up joints" for reps and ski instructors and are mostly frequented by under 25's. Very smokey atmospheres and very loud music. The place has no class at all. There is certainly a risk that you will be ripped off wherever you go. There is evidence of crime and fear of crime. The Hotel Rila has no Firearm notices on the entry doors and the main lounge/reception area is busy and impersonal. The food in the Rila is really poor, mass produced and generally cold. The decor in the restaurant, like the rest of the hotel, is tired and ugly. The indoor swimming pool area is poorly maintained, over-crowded with English people drinking lager out of cans and shouting at their kids. Next year I will not be persuaded by my friends to "give it a try", I will spend the little bit extra and go somewhere with a bit more style, fewer 'happy hour' bars and no lap dancing clubs, they attract the wrong element! I realise I sound like a snob! I guess that is the price you pay for having standards.
February 21, 2010
Dawn Thomas from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
We have recently returned from Borovets, after enjoying our first skiing holiday. It was wonderful & we are now hooked! It is ideal for beginners & we met many people who have returned many times, because they love it there. We booked ski lessons through 'Hunters' Ski school & James our handsome young instructor was excellent (I recommend him highly). We had friends in other groups who couldn't believe how far ahead we were with our skiing. Before going, we had heard bad reports & we were a little unsure what to expect. We had absolutely no problems in Bulgaria! There are seedy little places for the men but they didn't drag you in kicking & screaming! To be honest I hardly noticed them! A friend nearly got ripped off when changing money (check before signing!) but after our friend refused the rate, they did pay up! As with anywhere..just be alert! We did go on a Bularian night (£20-for 5 course meal & all you can drink). If you get the chance...go! We had a great time! They were really friendly & even accommodated my dairy free diet & my friends vegetarian diet! We stayed in a property about 20 minutes from Borovets - £300 per week, sleeps 6 people with sauna, hot tub, log fire & games room. A great place, but bear in mind, we then had car hire on top and we had to dig our way out of the drive a couple of times. All main roads are cleared regularly, so we had no problems there! Ideal for a family or a few friends together! Hope you enjoy Borovets as much as we did!!
February 21, 2010
Jean from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
I have finally got round to writing a review having skied in Borovets every year since December 1980. This year will be my 30th season. The vast majority of reviews on the website sum Borovets up beautifully. There is a magic and uniqueness about the place that is truly special and as one reviewer said you would have to be a real misery to not love it. The people are lovely and so friendly and helpful - providing you don't treat them like fools which they most definitely are not! Treat them with respect and recognise that they are simply struggling to survive in their uncertain country. Learn a few words of Bulgarian and they will love you and be your friend for life. Believe me, I know this for certain! It's a cheap holiday anymore and unfortunately overcharging and short changing does seem to have crept in recently - a great shame but the vast majority are honest and would not dream of doing this. Just keep your wits about you and have a rough idea of the cost before the bill arrives. Needless to say we have met some truly awful Brits over the years, especially in the early days, but our family is now into our 3rd generation with a lifetime love of Bulgaria and Bulgarians. We have always found the food plentiful and adequate and you would have to be very fussy indeed not to find something to suit - having said that, these days we always eat out in the evenings - that way you get a sense of being in Bulgaria which you don't get in the hotels. On a practical note - we have now had 3 generations taught to ski in Bulgaria and we have always found the instruction to be excellent (I learned with Borosport and if they could teach me to ski.....). Unless you are very unlucky, you will have a lot of fun in the ski classes, however, with private tuition you will learn much more quickly - the choice is yours but if you opt for private tuition my recommendation would be to book through one of the smaller, private ski schools such as Albena Ski School who tend to be more reliable as it's their own livelihood at stake and they will do their very best to accommodate you (often by calling their mates who will all be ex or current internationals). It's close to the clinic, look for the red cross sign halfway down the main street. Last year we had a party of 20, with 6 beginners, out there to celebrate my 70th birthday. All of the tuition and ski hire was booked through Albena (ask for Pepi and mention my name and this review if you like..). By the end of the week the kids could all ski down the same slope it took me 6 years to perfect! As you can imagine I could go on and on but though I have seen many changes over the years I would still recommend Borovets as a fun place to be. Finally, I read recently that there are no ATMs in Borovets - this is nonsense. It's the new, white building, opposite the gondola, on the left just above ther taxi rank and has never let me down yet.
January 27, 2010
Lisa from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
We have been going to Borovets as a group of mixed abilities, including children, for the past 6-7 years and we are going again this Feb in half-term. The Bulgarians are lovely people and will do anything for you and the kids. Any accommodation we have stayed in has been very basic but very clean and tidy. Food is always, again, very basic in the hotels but if you venture outside, there are some great restaurants and not that dear either. Although restaurants will have people outside trying to get you inside, just have a bit of humour with them and they will leave you alone...smile, it doesn't hurt!! If you look after the Bulgarians, they will look after you. This includes the ski instructors. Get a good one, look after him/her and you will end up having a fantastic time even if there is a lack of snow as this is something that cannot be guaranteed! Borovets is ideal for beginners and groups that want to have a good time and to be honest, experienced skiers would probably only want a week there if all the party are of that same standard - the resort is quite small but sufficient for a mixed group. We ski in other countries and every year we go back to Borovets and wish that this little village could be in other countries. Oh, and a must is 'Georges Bar'...along the green run. Hand built shack by George himself who serves lovely hot 'medicine' (lovely alcohol to you and me!) and hot chocolate.....can't pass without stopping (unless out of control, that is!) All in all, Borovets is a fab skiing resort if you are not expecting 'the Ritz' of skiing. See you there if your are going in half-term.....
January 16, 2010
Owain Davies from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
Myself, my wife & my sons (ages 27, 29 & 9) have just returned from Borovets today. We stayed in the hotel Samokov. Before going I was very concerned after reading some very bad reviews on the resort & hotel but went with a open mind and I have to say, do not take any notice of the bad reviews because the people who have written them must be very miserable & boring because this place is brilliant, the food in the hotel was fine it's not 4* but we had no complaints, the food outside of the hotel was lovely, especially the pizzas. The Bulgarian people cannot do enough for you. In one of the bars at the bottom of the nursery slopes my son asked for a bag of crisps but they did not sell them so one of the waiters ran down to the supermarket and got him some and didn't even charge us, now you can't fault that service. If you do go to this resort I can't recommend strongly enough that you use the Samokov ski school. All the instructors were very helpful, especially George. My wife & son were finding it hard to get the basics right in my group but within two hours with George they were snow ploughing and turning with no problems. Also the Neilson holiday reps were brilliant and really can't do enough for you and will help you if you need it. The week that we have been in Borovets the snow was not good and we were told that it was the least amount of snow they'd had for years. This made skiing very difficult but that's the chance you take when you go on a skiing holiday. But even with that in mind we would still not hesitate to go back to Borovets. It has everything you need to have a nice holiday as long as you have a positive attitude and want to enjoy yourself! You will have a ball. Owain Davies South Wales 16/01/2010
January 08, 2010
John Hamond from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
Having returned from Borovets recently I'm left with very good impressions. I've stayed in the hotel Olimp- very cheap, in good condition, tasty food. Only on Yastrebez I enjoyed the skiing, because only there was there plenty of snow. But taking in mind the hot winter the snow condition was outstanding. That's why I'm going again there next winter for sure. All in all, Borovets is a cost-effective and satisfying holiday for an average skier.
January 06, 2010
Karen from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
We went to Borovets February 2009 half term. Had lots of snow and had such a good time we stayed again from 26 December to 2 January. We stayed at the Hotel Samokov as previously. The hotel is geared up for children with swimming, bowling and table tennis. People moan about the food but breakfast and dinner are buffet style and I think that if you can't find something to eat it's a bad job, I have a fussy 13yr old who quite happily ate chips, rice, fish and chicken every night. The hotel did make an effort on new years eve with a gala dinner and entertainment. Unfortunatly, there wasn't alot of snow but we had 4 good days of skiing on the Yastrebetz runs. The ski instructor was very good. The other people in our group had stayed at Borovets before and we all had a good time. The 2x days we couldn't ski the instructors did organise things for us to do i.e. ice skating in Samakov and then to a restaurant, walking and bowling last day. The lack of snow didn't bother me and yes, I will be going back to Borovets again, as are the other people in our group. I would say that if you get good snow Borovets is excellent and good value for money. We have skied in France and Austria before and am going to Austria in March - double the money with not much going on for children!
January 04, 2010
JOE from UK from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
Returned from Borovets on 2nd Jan 2010. Went with a party of 15 mixed ability skiers ranging between absolute beginners to decent intermediates. We stayed at the Hotel Ela. It is well placed for the gondola, very clean, staff were OK and buffet style food service always had something on offer which was to our liking. Snow conditions a bit dissappointing/limited but managed 4 days skiing in all but was enjoyable all the same. Previous visits to Borovets have always been good for snow so this isn't a common occurance in my opinion - just another unfortunate sign of the strange things happening with the weather these days!. Would recommend the ski hire shop attached to the Ela. Unfortunately I didn't hire my skis there but wished I had. Some of our friends did and were kitted out with really good quality gear - almost new and prices were on a par with what I'd hired but my skis and poles were functional but rather tatty. This is the 3rd time we've been to this particular resort having been to Mayerhoffen twice, Alp duez and Bad Gastien before revisiting Borovets. I think the place offers a ski holiday that is relatively cheap and excellent value for money. Ok, it's not as extensive or safisticated as what the Alps can offer but you get what you pay for. Contrary to some of the reviews I've read I found the people at Borovets are very friendly. Night life is good - bars and restaurants have certain charm, likewise the resort in general which I must admit does take a little getting use to but once you've tuned in to the atmoshere it's hard to fault. All our group - 3 families aged ranged between 20 - 53 enjoyed themselves without exception. We'll be going back.