Not a trip report but a request for experience flying an AvGas aircraft to and from Bulgaria?
Destinations would be Bansko, Sofia and Varna.
The usual suspects: AvGas availability; handling requirements and airport fees, especially hidden charges; strictly airways or VFR also feasible?
Hungary may be the best ‘base camp’ to launch from, so suggestions of a GA friendly airport in Hungary also useful.
First off, Hungary is not really anywhere near Bulgaria ;-)
You should consider going via Serbia and get some of that very cheap Avgas at either Belgrade or Nis. Only drawback: your first stop in Bulgaria would then need to be at a customs aerodrome (not so if going via Romania for example).
Re fuel in Bulgaria: you would obviously need to check, not only in the AIP but also through direct contact with the airports. A lot seems to be either changing or is not published correctly. for example: Gorna Oryahovitsa used to be safe place for 100LL four years ago (had their confirmation at the time) but the AIP today says NIL.
Opposed to that, Varna (I was there in 2009) never used to have Avgas – now the AIP says they do. The airport was “OK”. Fees (with two nights parking) 80€ at the time. One word of caution: when I was there, they sealed the aircraft doors with some very aggressive stickers (did that when we were no longer on the apron). A bit like they do in part of Africa sometimes. That can ruin your paint / decals. In case you go, make sure you tell the apron people they shall refrain from applying those stickers!
Sofia Intl. does have Avgas but I assume the fees are high. Lesnovo, a GA airfield near Sofia has 100LL.
Plovdiv no Avgas I believe.
Burgas definitely had Avgas four years ago and the AIP still shows it. Avgas is very very expensive there (due to the vicinity of Turkey, they seem to think they can charge more). Airport fees quite steep as well (120€ IIRC).
Anyway, it seems like a handful of the small GA airfields do have Avgas now. Some even have Mogas. If you don’t need customs, I would definitely try to arrange landing at one or more of those places. Makes much more fun and sense. Mooney driver has been to Primorsko four years ago (see here for some nice impressions). I’m sure he will sooner or later join in and add some more info.
I once considered a trip to Bulgaria (I have some friendly ex-colleagues in Sofia) and had planned to use the aerodrome at Lesnovo ( see www.intersky.bg ) , LBLS.
Places I was curious to visit are the aviation museum in Plovdiv, said to be the only one in the country, and the aerodrome at Primorsko, because it seems so unexpected: a neat field really at the size of G/A, in a country generally poor and with no tradition of G/A.
For landing in Hungary, you might consider the little field near Eger: it is the base of the makers of my craft. The city is very nice, perhaps 20 minutes stiff walking away; and restaurants and hotels are amazingly affordable. Don’t know about avgas availabilty, though. Check it out at http://www.halley.hu/apollo.php?kat_nev=Apollo%20Airport
Bosco/Jan thank you for input – euroga.org once again doing what it says on the tin, reaching some parts of Europe which other GA sites might miss!
Robert, yours is a Piper Cub, isn’t it? With what engine? Does it really require avgas?
Jan, would love to take the Super Cub and its 64 years young C-90-8F down to Varna (mogas should not be an issue), but this visit might be business related.
If I go GA I might try and borrow an early 182 with a -470K which I believe is also mogas friendly, although am a bit wary of mogas and low temperatures if you need to go airways.Thread drift, but what fuel ice precautions is recommended if you did need to use some mogas?
You run that site, Medflyer?
No, it is run by Pilot&Flugzeug… that german pilot magazine…
It’s been going for several years now, though IMHO not highly successfully. The usual caveat…too little traffic due to too scarce participation by the comunity.
Even though I work for Pilot&Flugzeug, I have to be honest and say that I don’t like you-fly.com very much, as the format does not really invite pilots to write more than a few words or numbers.
I much prefer the eddh.de format with its free text philosophy. That one – despite being German only – has more traffic, more airfield infos and is generally more useful for flying in Europe than the English-language you-fly.com.
eddh.de is very nice, although the jargon is sometimes a bit difficult… I could look up “Tragschrauber”, but what is an “Echo-Flugzeug”?