The Mail checks right into a £40-a-night lodge on Sunny Seaside in Bulgaria – and is impressed


‘The largest mistake individuals make about Sunny Seaside is to suppose that it’s just for youngsters.’ That’s what Bulgarian journey agent Tanko Kovalev tells me.

Later, stretched out on a poolside recliner, idly speculating concerning the ages of my fellow friends, I feel he may be proper.

I can see an excellent unfold of pensioners. The chap snoozing beneath a tree, sporting a white walrus moustache, appears like a time traveller from the nineteenth century.

Affordable: Thomas W. Hodgkinson checks into Riu Helios Paradise in Sunny Beach (pictured)

Inexpensive: Thomas W. Hodgkinson checks into Riu Helios Paradise in Sunny Seaside (pictured)

Thomas writes: 'For a decade or so, the middle part of Sunny Beach - a pristine sweep of sand on Bulgaria’s Black Sea coast (above) - has heaved with sunburnt teenagers getting drunk on £2 pints of beer. But stay at the bottom, or at the top, and you can avoid the wet T-shirt competitions and punch-ups'

Thomas writes: ‘For a decade or so, the center a part of Sunny Seaside – a pristine sweep of sand on Bulgaria’s Black Beach (above) – has heaved with sunburnt youngsters getting drunk on £2 pints of beer. However keep on the backside, or on the prime, and you may keep away from the moist T-shirt competitions and punch-ups’

The Riu Helios Paradise is 'a 597-room, four-star behemoth in terracotta', writes Thomas. A hotel that 'slightly resembles the Harrods Furniture Depository on the Thames'

The Riu Helios Paradise is ‘a 597-room, four-star behemoth in terracotta’, writes Thomas. A lodge that ‘barely resembles the Harrods Furnishings Depository on the Thames’

Thomas walks along the beach to Funny Pub (above)... 'where the action is'. He says it's 'Brit-central'. He adds: 'Nearby, I spot a lurid-looking restaurant. "We never close", the sign outside declares'

Thomas walks alongside the seashore to Humorous Pub (above)… ‘the place the motion is’. He says it is ‘Brit-central’. He provides: ‘Close by, I spot a lurid-looking restaurant. “We by no means shut”, the signal outdoors declares’

For a decade or so, the center a part of Sunny Seaside — a pristine sweep of sand on Bulgaria’s Black Beach — has heaved with sunburnt youngsters getting drunk on £2 pints of beer. However keep on the backside, or on the prime, and you may keep away from the moist T-shirt competitions and punch-ups.

The number-one enchantment is how low-cost it’s. Sunny Seaside is alleged to be one of many most cost-effective seashore locations in all of Europe.

Bearing this in thoughts, I’m impressed by the looks of the Riu Helios Paradise, the place I’m berthed.

A 597-room, four-star behemoth in terracotta, it barely resembles the Harrods Furnishings Depository on the Thames. I’m paying £40 an evening, all inclusive (alcohol, too).

It has 5 eating places. There are additionally 4 swimming swimming pools. And in case you’re feeling extra adventurous, the Black Sea is on the doorstep.

Its water is oddly unsalty, so you’re feeling extra such as you’re swimming in a lake. Neither is it black, by the best way. The identify is owing to its violent winter storms, that are unhealthy information for sailors.

My fellow friends embrace German and French individuals, however they’re primarily Britons. John from Stoke Newington tells me he purchased a home close to right here in 2005 for £12,000. Since then, he has achieved nothing with it. He simply comes out each few years to have a look at it. I get speaking to 2 ladies from Bristol, who’re on their honeymoon. They’re having a pleasant time however are discovering it quiet in early Could.

Thomas's fellow guests at the Riu Helios Paradise (above) 'include German and French people, but they are mainly Britons'

Thomas’s fellow friends on the Riu Helios Paradise (above) ’embrace German and French individuals, however they’re primarily Britons’

Thomas reveals that one of his fellows guests 'had her handbag stolen off the back of her wheelchair'

Thomas reveals that considered one of his fellows friends ‘had her purse stolen off the again of her wheelchair’

TUI is offering all-inclusive, one-week packages, staying at the Riu Helios Paradise (above), starting at £520pp including flights

TUI is providing all-inclusive, one-week packages, staying on the Riu Helios Paradise (above), beginning at £520pp together with flights

Considered one of them, Shelley, had her purse stolen off the again of her wheelchair. This was ‘disappointing’, she says.

Within the night, they suggest Humorous Pub, which is ‘the place the motion is’. A half-hour stroll alongside the seashore, it’s Brit-central. Close by, I spot a lurid-looking restaurant. ‘We by no means shut’, the signal outdoors declares.

On the bar, having fun with my £2 pint of native Kamenitza beer, I strike up a dialog with a person named Russell from Swansea. As a poetry fan, I ask him if he likes Dylan Thomas.

‘Extra for the ingesting than the writing,’ comes the reply. Russell, too, has purchased a small home, an hour’s stroll inland within the village of Tankovo. Each night, he strides all the way down to the seashore to drink a budget beer.

'Bounce' and ‘Viking’ are two of the most popular Sunny Beach (above) nightclubs. When Thomas checks them out online he finds 'photos of writhing, blissed-out adolescents: images of heaven or hell, depending on your definition'

‘Bounce’ and ‘Viking’ are two of the most well-liked Sunny Seaside (above) nightclubs. When Thomas checks them out on-line he finds ‘photographs of writhing, blissed-out adolescents: photos of heaven or hell, relying in your definition’

A dip in the Black Sea (above, at Sunny Beach) is like swimming in a lake, Thomas reveals, as its water is 'oddly unsalty'

A dip within the Black Sea (above, at Sunny Seaside) is like swimming in a lake, Thomas reveals, as its water is ‘oddly unsalty’

Thomas visited the ancient town of Nessebar (pictured), which is twenty minutes away from the hotel. 'It’s easy to explore and is home to incredible Byzantine churches,' he says

Thomas visited the traditional city of Nessebar (pictured), which is twenty minutes away from the lodge. ‘It’s straightforward to discover and is dwelling to unbelievable Byzantine church buildings,’ he says 

TRAVEL FACTS 

TUI is providing all-inclusive, one-week packages, staying on the Riu Helios Paradise in Sunny Seaside, beginning at £520pp together with flights (tui.co.uk).

Humorous Pub is loud. The dwell band blasts out renditions of Can’t Assist Falling In Love, Dropping My Faith and Want You Have been Right here. I ask the barman to suggest some golf equipment and he shouts again: ‘Bounce!’ and ‘Viking!’ Wanting on-line, I discover photographs of writhing, blissed-out adolescents: photos of heaven or hell, relying in your definition.

When you’re within the temper for tradition, Sunny Seaside provides that, too. 

Twenty minutes away, on slightly peninsula protruding into the Black Sea, sits the traditional city of Nessebar. It’s straightforward to discover and is dwelling to unbelievable Byzantine church buildings. The icons and murals are stunning to behold.

Tucking into my kebab at Nessebar’s Hemingway restaurant (goodness, that man obtained round), I mirror that I made the correct alternative in coming to Sunny Seaside.

Nessebar has been a discovery. However the spotlight is spending one complete day beside the numerous swimming pools of the Helios Paradise — studying, daydreaming and, at one level, serving to myself to a banana ice cream.



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