727 - İstanbul Sofya Treni - OnurPassenger

Istanbul Sofia train guide for beginners

Train service between Istanbul and Sofia has started. But it’s not easy to reach to clear official information. 

We travelled to Sofia for you, and prepare this little guide:

Ticket sales at Sirkeci

Unfortunately, there’s no way to buy it through internet. There’s no even way to buy it from a train station other than Sirkeci. But don’t worry. Train is not full, you can buy it just before you get on the train.

No names on tickets, you can buy it before you decide with whom to go. 🙂

Roundtrip is possible, but no discount. Cash and credit card are accepted.

Where’s Sirkeci station?

Do not expect much to learn at ticket office

There were two officiers at Sirkeci with very limited English. One of them didn’t want to answer any question even in Turkish.

Timetable and ticket fares of Istanbul-Sofia train

Train departs from Halkali

Unfortunately, trains cannot reach Istanbul city center yet. The departure station is Halkali, 20 km west of Istanbul.

Where’s Halkalı Station?

But do not worry. In March 2019, Marmaray project was commissioned. The suburban trains started running between Gebze and Halkali, which enables reaching Halkali without any interchange from many points in Istanbul, such as Sirkeci, Bakirkoy, Bostanci, Ayrilikcesmesi, Sogutlucesme.

Marmaray suburban trains

Cover Photo: Onur Uysal ©

Pages: 1 2 3 4 5

47 replies »

  1. Muchas gracias por el post! Ha sido de gran utilidad.
    Thanks a lot for sharing the information! It was very helpful.


    • Thanks for such useful information!
      Do you know (BDZ email does not respond):
      1. The price from Dimitrovgrad to Halkali is the same like for the whole route?
      2. Can we buy tickets in Sofia international cash desks but from Dimitrovgrad?
      3. So, now there is no bus shuttle – passengers have to travel by themselves (by Marmaray – suburban trains)?


    • Thanks. 1. It’ll surely be less, but don’t know. 2. sorry, don’t know. it would be good to tell us if you learn. 3. no bus anymore. but I’d not suggest using it if it were. marmaray is easier to get in, faster to reach, safer and more reliable.


  2. Read from top to bottom searching for the ticket charges. Saw lot many poor jokes though information was good, but no train fares. No pun intended !


    • Hi Sam, train fares is in first page, under heading “Do not expect much to learn at ticket office”. It’s a link to train’s page at Rail Turkey to ensure that you reach up-to-date information any time.


  3. we valued this account loads. And you were so correct about the ticket office. we purchased our ticket from Sirkeci station and from there is a bus transfer at 21;30 hrs


  4. I ll tell in case I use it! About Marmaray 1. Do you need Istanbul card to use it from Halkali to Sirkeci (as I understood it does not include in price of train Sofia-Istanbul? 2. How long it takes between this stations? 3. What is the price? Thanks!


Your questions/comments

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.