Nessebar cruises

A dreamy, cobbled old town, Nessebar is located on a rocky peninsula less than a kilometre long, connected to the mainland by a narrow strip of land. Let yourself be captivated by the wistful atmosphere as you browse for hand-made local jewellery and ceramics or simply admire the Roman fortified walls or the cluster of picturesque Byzantine and Bulgarian churches.

Excursions

Please note: The shore excursions listed are typical for this port. The full programme of shore excursions available for your cruise will be displayed on Cruise Personaliser at least 12 weeks prior to departure.

  • A Glimpse of Two Towns

    Explore the churches of Nessebur and the charming fishing village of Sozopol.

    A Glimpse of Two Towns

    Greet your guide to begin a gentle stroll along the cobbled streets to view the popular sights of Nessebur. In the town that is said to have more churches per capita than anywhere else in the world, compare the rich exterior of the 14th Century St John the Alliturgetos Church to the 11th century medieval Church of St Stephen. A visit to the Church of the Pantocrator demonstrates the mix of mid-Eastern architectural styles with the medieval Bulgarian and Byzantine motifs.

    Sit back and relax as you drive past the salt pans and neighbouring port of Bourgas to the ancient town of Sozopol, founded in 610BC by the Greeks. Situated on a rocky peninsular this fishing village is one of the most charming places on the Bulgarian coast.

    Make your way along the narrow cobblestone streets to the Archaeological Museum, where you’ll see exhibits of ceramic vessels, marble gravestones and detailed copies of antique ships. Continue with a visit to the 17th century Church of the Holy Virgin to admire the beautiful wood-carved iconostasis and bishop’s throne which are examples of one of the country’s foremost art schools. Round off your Bulgarian experience with a delicious lunch of selected dishes prepared using local recipes.



    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. There is approximately 2 hours of walking on this tour over inclined cobblestoned walkways. There are approximately 80 steps to negotiate throughout this tour. There is a 2 Euro video/camera fee inside the Church of St Stephen.

    Tour code

    NES_005

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    • Meal included

      Meal Included

    Duration

    6½ hours

  • Nessebur & Folkloric Show

    Explore the medieval town of Nessebur and enjoy a colourful folkloric show accompanied by the taste of local wines.

    Nessebur & Folkloric Show

    Your walking tour begins through part of ancient Nessebur, previously known as Mesembria and declared as a national heritage park of Bulgaria and UNESCO World Heritage Site.

    Stop at the Church of St Stephen, built in the 11th century and a significant example of medieval Bulgarian architecture. The 700 square metres of the interior walls are covered with 258 well-preserved mural paintings.

    Continue your walk through the medieval cobbled streets passing by the 2-storied houses from the Bulgarian revival onto the Church of St Sophia for a photo stop. During your walk, pass by and view the magnificent church exteriors of St John the Baptist and Christ Pantocrator. Discover the area under your own steam during some free time before re-boarding your coach for the drive to the Bulgarian resort of Sunny Beach. This large holiday complex, situated between Cape Emine and Nessebur, has numerous hotels and a sandy beach making it a popular area for visitors.

    Sit back and relax with a glass of local wine and light hors d’oeuvres at an emblematic theme restaurant and admire the splendid views from the terrace. A local folkloric ensemble will entertain you with a lively folklore show of Bulgarian dances and songs before you rejoin your coach for the drive back to your ship.



    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. There is approximately 1½ hours of walking on this tour over cobbled and paved terrain. There are approximately 50 steps to negotiate from the Pier to the old town. There is a 2 Euro video/camera fee inside the Church of St Stephen.

    Tour code

    NES_001

    Features

    • Activity medium

      Activity Level: Medium

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    • Shopping

      Shopping

    Duration

    3¾ hours

  • A Taste of Bulgaria

    Learn about Bulgarian lifestyle and traditions and see how to make the famous ‘banitsa’.

    A Taste of Bulgaria

    Board your coach for a 30 minute drive to the village of Orizare to visit an ethnographic complex, a guardian of the Bulgarian traditions. Behind the heavy gates, you will find a charming development exhibiting the lifestyle and traditions of Bulgarian families from the past century.

    Step inside the whitewashed house for a glimpse of the traditional domestic interior decoration. View the old fireplace with a low round table and three-legged chairs in the kitchen as well as the wooden loom, used for making the rugs and clothing on display.

    Back in the garden, don’t miss the old watermill whose wheel is still turning after more than a century of operation.

    The Bulgarian Christian tradition is embedded in a private chapel with beautiful wood carved iconostasis and colourful murals. Enjoy some traditional Bulgarian specialities and observe a cooking demonstration of the famous Bulgarian ‘banitsa’ - a cheese and egg pastry pie.

    Round off your Bulgarian experience with a folklore performance, introducing you to Bulgarian folklore music and dance with traditional costumes.

    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. There is approximately 30 minutes of walking on this tour over paved gravel and a few steps.

    Tour code

    NES_007

    Features

    • Activity low

      Activity Level: Low

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    Duration

    3 hours

  • Pomorie Highlights

    Try something different on this half-day tour. Visit the Thracian Tomb, the Museum of Salt and Pomorie Wine Cellars.

    Pomorie Highlights

    Sit back and enjoy the scenery during a panoramic drive from Nessebur to the relaxed seaside town of Pomorie. The town was founded in the 4th century BC near the salty lake, which the ancient Thracians called "sacred" for its curative mud. The saltpans surrounding Pomorie Lake, one of Bulgaria's main sources of salt, are nowadays renowned for their therapeutic mud baths.

    The Ancient Thracian Tomb of Pomorie dates back to the 2nd century AD and is remarkably well preserved. Step inside the vaulted tomb, which is recognized as a national cultural monument for its unique beehive construction.

    The Salt Museum opened in 2002 and is the only specialised Museum in Bulgaria and Eastern Europe which presents the technology for producing salt by solar evaporation of sea water. As you walk around the Museum, you will see a unique collection of photographs from the 20th century, old topographical maps, models and authentic salt equipment and instruments.

    If the Salt Museum has made you thirsty then a visit to the Wine Cellars of Pomorie should fix that. The Cellars were built in 1932 and are where famous Bulgarian wines mature.

    Enjoy a tour of the Cellars and sample some wine, brandies and snacks as you are entertained with some traditional Bulgarian folkloric music and dancing.



    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. There is approximately 1½ hours of walking on the tour. There are ten steps at Pomorie Wine Cellars and three steps with gravel ground at the Thracian Tomb.

    Tour code

    NES_006

    Features

    • Activity medium

      Activity Level: Medium

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    Duration

    3½ hours

  • Nessebur Sights & Pomorie Wines

    This tour shows you the main attractions of Nessebur, the seaside town of Pomorie and a wine and brandy tasting session.

    Nessebur Sights & Pomorie Wines

    Your guide will greet you for a short walk directly into the medieval town of Nessebur, uphill past the huge ruins of St Alliturgetos Church to stop at the Church of St Stephen. Built in the 11th century it is a significant example of medieval Bulgarian architecture boasting 700 square metres of interior walls covered with 258 well-preserved mural paintings.

    Take a short walk to the Archaeological Museum, which exhibits findings and treasures from all archaeological sites of the peninsula including a rich collection of ancient Greek and Roman artefacts. The pride of the Museum is a collection of Bulgarian icons.

    Continue to the attractive resort of Pomorie passing the salt pans surrounding Pomorie Lake, one of Bulgaria's main sources of salt, and renowned for its therapeutic mud baths. Sited upon a peninsula, Pomorie is a quiet, relaxed seaside town with a colourful fishing port. Visit the Thracian Tomb, one of the most famous monuments of Thracian culture.

    Pomorie is also famous for its wine cellars and at one of the town’s wine vaults you will have the opportunity to sample some of the aromatic wines and brandies produced in the surrounding countryside.



    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. There is approximately 1½ hours of walking on this tour with steps at the Museums and wine cellar. There is a 2 Euro camera/video fee inside the Church of St. Stephen and flash photography is not permitted.

    Tour code

    NES_004

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    Duration

    5 hours

  • Best of Nessebur & Bourgas

    Explore the highlights of Nessebur and Bourgas on this full day tour including a Bulgarian style lunch and free time.

    Best of Nessebur & Bourgas

    Explore medieval Nessebur on foot in the company of a knowledgeable guide. There is no better way to discover the rich legacy of Nessebur than to walk through its narrow streets and visit this ‘museum town’ listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

    Pass by the Church of St Pantocrator, St John the Baptist Church and the Church of St Sofia, all worthy photograph stops, before a visit to the 11th century Church of St Stephen to marvel at over 258 mural paintings.

    Continue by coach onto Bourgas, once a small fishermen’s village in the 18th century. The port of Bourgas was the largest one in the southern Balkans and has a beautiful location on the Black Sea bay surrounded by three picturesque lakes. Enjoy a Bulgarian style lunch upon arrival before a panoramic drive through its downtown to the Archaeological Museum. The Museum is housed in one of the oldest buildings in the downtown area and displays artefacts dating back to the 4th and 5th centuries BC that represent the Hellenic and Roman époques.

    Visit the Museum of Ethnography located in a beautiful house dating from the middle of the 19th century, still in its original shape and containing its original furniture. Have some free time at leisure to browse for local souvenirs and practice bargaining skills.



    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. There is over 2 hours of walking on this tour with 60 steps to negotiate in Nessebur and some steps at the entrance of both Museums. There is a 2 Euro video/camera fee inside the Church of St Stephen.

    Tour code

    NES_002

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    • Meal included

      Meal Included

    • Shopping

      Shopping

    Duration

    6½ hours