ARTICLES 
Cheap ski vacation in the Far East of Europe
Article by Boryana Semkova, Capital Weekly Newspaper, 2-8 April 2005

Kris, 25-year old woman from Manchester UK is a ski lover, who conquered many difficult ski pistes in France and Austria. She works in one of the numerous firms for clothes at the heart of Manchester and earns quite enough, having in mind the fact that she is still young and is still single. That is why last year she decided to bye a house - not very big, but still her own. However, the mortgage made her quit some of the things that she enjoyed including her favorite ski vacations. Obviously, this year she could not go anywhere - actually this was the perspective for now, at least before she has a promotion. This house was also the reason why she had no chance to see her friends as often as before - Rob, Vikki, Paul, Rachel, Sally and Patrick. Christmas was coming and she invited them to visit her- the Christmas bonus would help her to afford it.
The noisy group of young people gathered a couple of days before the holiday. Everyone liked Kriss house, the girls wanted to know more about the price and the mortgage. This conversation made Kris recall the fact that she had sacrificed her ski vacation, because of the house and she shared that with her friends.
It turned out that cutting off her connections with her friends made her loose the opportunity to experience a great ski vacation in Bulgaria. Actually, she was not so sure about that great country. For her this east European country was a symbol of risk. One day by chance she read an article in the Australian Sidney Morning Harold. The article described Bulgaria as the Far East of New Europe where a tourist from Western Europe can turn into real Marko Polo on ski. This opportunity frightened Kris.
The red-haired enthusiast Patrick showed her the web site www.BulgariaSki.com The site offers many opinions to the foreign tourists about the big Bulgarian ski resorts- Borovets, Bansko, Chepelare, Pamporovo and Vitosha.
She found out that the favorite resorts for the people from western countries are Pamporovo and Borovets, and Bansko is the new star. This country is really, really very cheap, wrote Steve and Sofi for Bansko. We were very impressed by the quality of service at the hotel. The skiing is great, but because of the avalanches it is very adventurously to ski out of the pistes. Then the couple quoted Guardian: Incredibly, indisputably, absurdly cheap


Seven nights in a tree star hotel plus breakfast and dinner cost 165 GBP. What is more Bansko in Pirin will turn into the pearl in the snow covered tiara of Bulgaria. The Financial Times reviled the successful attempt of Ulen, which invested 40 million Euro in equipment, special projects for the pistes and the specific climate conditions of the Pirin slopes.
Kris discovered that there are many people who adore the famous resorts Borovets and Pamporovo. This is the most beautiful place I have ever visited in my life- wrote Ana from Serbia about Borovets. Of course, not only the pistes, but also the nightlife impressed her. Phil from UK called Borovets a paradise on earth and loves the cosy atmosphere of the resort.
Kris decided to enrich her knowledge and searched the engine for more info. Most of the newspapers stressed on another fact about Bulgaria- the purchase of extremely cheap property.
The prices of houses in Bulgaria, which is just 3 hours away by plane, are so low, that a two-bedroom house with 8 000 square meters land is sold for 7 500 GBP. Quite nice rural property can be bought for 3 000 GBP informed Evening Herald. Sunday Telegraph warned about boosting the prices for foreigners, the big commissions for the agents and for the still developing property market. The opportunity to buy a cheap house in a country that will become a member of the European Union in 2007 turned out to be a great opportunity for Kris.

She decided to stop reading and go back to her friends. They reviled her some imperfections that can be seen in the Bulgarian resorts and they are mainly of hotel inconveniences. However, Rob summarized the common impression like that: the truth is that we had really great time in Bulgaria - in spite of some imperfections. But the clear snow, the nice local people who try to speak English, wonderful instructors and the miraculous views make the experience unforgettable.
So, decided Kris, it is better to experience a cheap ski vacation, than to stay at home. Then she remembered the words of the Slobodan from Serbia, who said that Bansko already has unofficially high rating among the ski centers in Europe.

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