Bulgaria’s third largest city, set on the Black Sea coas,  has been an important centre of maritime trade since ancient Greek times.  Today Varna is also a popular Eastern European beach resort, surrounded by long sandy stretches and little explored coves. Here are a few ways you can take to the sea.

Like a pirate 

Dream of being Captain Jack Sparrow? Then step aboard a three-masted galleon – actually a replica of the vessel Columbus set sail on in – that cruises north from Varna to the Euxinograd Palace and south to the mouth of the Kamchya River, complete with a hilarious crew of salty tars acting like brigands to spice things up. 

Enjoy a seafood feast on board Mr Babá’s / Image: Getty

Like a gourmand 

Where better to scoff the catch of the day than on a handsome wooden-hulled sailing ship? Mr Babá’s tightly curated menu of seafood delights, with thoughtfully set out wine list, are both well worth diving into next time you find yourself peckish in port. 

Hiring a yacht may be cheaper than you think / Image: Adobe Stock

Like a movie star 

Do as Leonardo DiCaprio would do and treat yourself to a private yacht for a day – crew provided, obviously –  for a voyage up and down the Bulgarian coast, exploring all its many unspoiled virgin coves. It can be cheaper than you'd imagine, for a truly unforgettable jaunt.