Istanbul is packed with charging stations. We ended up charging in the garage of the hotel we stayed at. The garage has several modern Typ 2 outlets that we just plugged in and charged. We were totally impressed by the service level of that hotel. Not did we have a great room in the 17th floor with a view over parts of Istanbul. But also did we enjoy the SPA facilities and the parking garage. All of this cost us about 70€ per night. Due to the lack of tourists in Istanbul, one is able to make quite a good deal there.
In Istanbul we met Emir, an absolute EV-enthusiast (find out more about him and the meeting with him on his blog). He was so helpful and is such an inspiring personality. We are so happy that we met!
Emir showed us what kind of plugs could be helpful to us in Turkey. We bought the most common one in a large “technician mall”. That plug was used several times throughout our journey through Turkey. The red “normal” Typ 2 plug is not very common anywhere outside of western Europe.
From plugshare we knew that electricity shouldn’t be hard to find in Plovidiv. Arriving at about 8 p.m. in the evening, we started to search for an hotel immediately. Even if there is a charging opportunity in a city, we still prefer staying in an hotel that offers us an electricity outlet. It is just convenient if the car is right outside of the building where we are staying at. This simplifies logistics a lot. After being denied in four hotels, we finally found one hotel where a super helpful receptionist managed to find a Schuko wall plug. Of course that Schuko did not give us a whole lot of electricity. To have 95% of the Tesla’s battery charged before leaving to Turkey, we put the car the next morning in the garage of a shopping center nearby.
Plovidiv is a nice city. A stroll through its roads sweetened our waiting time for the car to be fully charged. We left for the direction of Turkey in the early afternoon and reached the border with about 45% of our battery left.
Our laptop broke in Montenegro. We knew that there is a Lenovo Center in Sofia. Therefore, our first destination in Sofia was the mall, where a Lenovo store was located at. As we experienced it before, we found a nice 11kW electrical outlet in the garage and our car was charging, while we were trying to get our laptop repaired and while we had dinner.
The next day we were planning to drive towards the south-east of Bulgaria. To make the 200km to Vishovgrad, the village where our friends Julia and Miroslav live, we needed a bit more energy. Since the hotel that we found (at 11 p.m.) could not offer any electricity outlet, we charged the next day at a public charging station in front of an insurance company in downtown Sofia.
The tiny road was packed with cars when we arrived. An employee of the insurance company helped us by somehow making most of them leave. We charged 22kW for about 2 hours and left with almost 100% to the south-east of Bulgaria.