The Best Restaurants in Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria

Tsarevets Castle, Veliko Tarnovo
Tsarevets Castle, Veliko Tarnovo | © ravabo/Pixabay
Maria Angelova

Veliko Tarnovo used to be the capital of Bulgaria, and as such it still has a stately presence that can hardly be explained, only felt. This goes for the places to eat in Veliko Tarnovo as well – homey or elegant, with home-style or gourmet cuisine, they will all serve your food as if you were royalty. Here’s our choice of the best restaurants in which to try Bulgarian and international cuisine in Veliko Tarnovo.

1. Shtastliveca

Restaurant, Bulgarian, European

Shtastliveca is a restaurant chain that originated in Veliko Tarnovo in 1997 and has since expanded throughout the country. It is named after one of the pseudonyms of one of the most prominent Bulgarian writers, Aleko Konstantinov. The interior for the restaurants is inspired by the furniture and décor of 1930s Bulgaria, when Aleko Konstantinov lived. “A collection of tastes and aromas” is the motto of the restaurant, whose chefs have won multiple awards at culinary competitions. Enjoy the different lunch menu every day or indulge in the seasonal menu, focused on fresh season-specific ingredients.

2. Casa di Bianco

Restaurant, Bulgarian, Sushi, Mediterranean, European

Casa di Bianco is one of the restaurants in Veliko Tarnovo with the best service and definitely one that will offer you creative recipes, different than anything else served in the city. The renovated summer terrace is where you can enjoy the hot summer nights with a glass of wine in the heart of Veliko Tarnovo, in Maika Bulgaria Square. Pizza, risotto, baked flatbread, meat and vegetarian dishes are all served in style, but the special star of the venue is its sushi menu.

3. Ivan Asen

Restaurant, Bulgarian

Restaurant Ivan Asen, Veliko Tarnovo
© moerschy/Pixabay
This restaurant is in perfect sync with the medieval atmosphere of Veliko Tarnovo – its interior features details that are reminiscent of times past – stained glass, an old-style fountain, and columns that are exact copies of those with inscriptions left by Bulgarian medieval rulers. The menu will spoil you for choice, offering both European and Bulgarian national cuisine, with meat lovers being the most fortunate with a great variety of options.

4. Hadji Nikoli Inn

Restaurant, Bulgarian, European

The restaurant at Hadji Nikoli Inn is a place with a rich history. It was built in 1858 for a local tradesman named Hadji Nikoli, who later took part in the Bulgarian struggle for independence. Today, the restaurant is decorated in the traditional setting of the past – stone, wood, and wrought iron dominate the interior. Apart from the main menu, there is a gourmet menu with specialties from the chef. The restaurant is part of a major complex that also includes a wine bar, a wine shop, a museum, a guest house, and an art gallery.

5. Tihiyat kat

Restaurant, Bulgarian

Tihiyat kat (Тихият кът) is a traditional Bulgarian tavern that has been around for more than 50 years. It is situated at the beginning of Gen. Gurko Street, in the area where the old town and the new town of Veliko Tarnovo merge into each other. The tavern has the spirit of traditional taverns without being overdone or touristy. The funny slogans on the walls, like “Even the crazy run away from the drunken,” create a light and friendly ambiance, while the cuisine served is the best of the Bulgarian homemade delicacies.

6. Asenevci

Restaurant, Bulgarian, European

Asenevci is a spacious restaurant with three rooms located in the center of Veliko Tarnovo. Its menu will take you on a world tour – from traditional Bulgarian dishes to Mediterranean gourmet specialties. The restaurant organizes themed dinners showcasing the latest culinary trends. The shady summer garden is perfect to survive the hot summer days in the city in a pleasant fashion, and don’t forget to save space for dessert.

7. La Scalla

Restaurant, Bulgarian, European

La Skala, Veliko Tarnovo
© ilgag/Pixabay
La Scalla was founded back in 1993 and has been one of the favorite restaurants for locals in Veliko Tarnovo ever since. The restaurant spreads out on two floors and offers delicious food served in huge portions at affordable prices. What more can one want from a restaurant? Take a special note of the meals cooked in traditional Bulgarian pottery (gyuveche) and the homemade desserts.

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