Displays on regional costumes, crafts and folklore are spread over two floors of the palace, and many of the rooms, with their marble...
National Art Gallery
This gallery holds one of the country’s most important collections of Bulgarian art, with several galleries full of mainly 19th- and...
National Museum of Natural History
You can almost sense the ghosts of generations of school parties dutifully trooping through the musty halls of Bulgaria's oldest museum,...
Toba & Co
Ensconced in what was once Tsar Ferdinand’s butterfly house, in the gardens at the rear of the Royal Palace, this discreet cafe is a...
Royal Palace information
Lonely Planet review
Originally built as the headquarters of the Ottoman police force, it was at the Royal Palace that Bulgaria's national hero, Vasil Levski, was tried and tortured before his public execution in 1873. After the Liberation, the building was remodelled in Viennese style and in 1887, apparently undeterred by its grisly recent past, Prince Alexander Battenberg moved in and it became the official residence of Bulgaria's royal family until the communist takeover.
These days it houses the National Art Gallery and the Ethnographical Museum, while the shaded park at the rear contains an odd assemblage of statues.