For Nikola Tsolov, going home to Bulgaria is a once-a-year affair, with the ART Grand Prix driver now residing in Spain.
We sat down with the Bulgarian Lion to ask him more about where he grew up, his favourite spots in the country and what there is to do.
WHERE DID YOU GROW UP?
“I grew up in the capital of Bulgaria which is Sofia. I’ve moved now and I’ve been living in Valencia for a year now. It’s closer to the racing and easier for travel.”
WHAT LANGUAGES ARE SPOKEN THERE?
“Just Bulgarian really.”
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE IT TO SOMEONE?
“It’s a big city I would say. Almost half of Bulgaria lives there, it’s quite a big population in the city. There’s loads of stuff to do, loads of activities. There’s a karting track actually inside this one shopping mall, but to be honest I’m not sure what else there is.
“There’s a lot of good restaurants in the centre and in the shopping centres. There’s a couple big ones with some nice restaurants around there.”
WHAT WOULD YOU RECOMMEND TO SOMEONE VISITNG FOR THE FIRST TIME?
“I would say go closer to the centre, there’s a lot of young people there and a lot of university students. There’s not many tourists around at the moment. I know that skiing is quite popular. There’s a few places a couple hours away from Sofia that are pretty popular at the moment. I wanted to go for a while and in this winter but there was no snow. But when Ieft in mid-January to start preparing for the season, that’s when it snowed. So I got quite a bit unlucky.”
WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE THING TO DO THERE?
“Hang around with friends that I’ve known for a long time. Usually I go to the karting track at the shopping centre because my best friend is the son of the boss who owns it. When I went back last winter, there was a meet and greet there, and there were a lot of people there, that was quite fun.
“We do a lot of karting there. I don’t see them often cause I’m only in Bulgaria once a year, in the winter. The summer break - there’s no point going back to Bulgaria when you live in Spain. Usually I invite them to come stay in Spain rather than me going back.”