The Republic of Macedonia is a small, beautiful country of South East Europe, located in Balkan. On south it border with Serbia, on north with Greece and west with Bulgaria. Macedonia has about 2 million citizens which belong to different ethnic groups. ( Macedonians, Serbs, Albanians, Turks .. )
Macedonia is a small country / area of 25,713 km2 /, and it represents the cradle of culture, which includes several ancient theaters, thousands of monasteries and well-preserved Christian and Byzantine churches and Ottoman mosques over 200, with testimony from the Stone Age, as well as earlier periods of human civilization.
Macedonia is also known as Vardar Macedonia by the river Vardar which flows through the country nearly the entire length of the longest rivers in the state.
The capital is Skopje in Macedonia with over 600,000 inhabitants.
When you need to travel in Macedonia ?
If you want to visit Macedonia must note the following information that may help you:
Temperature range: summer temperatures can reach 43 ° C, and winter temperatures can fall so low as to be and -30 ° C. The average annual temperature is almost everywhere above 10 ° C. Summers are hot and dry, and winter snow falls on the mountains from November to April. The best time to visit Macedonia between May and September, and the peak tourist season is from mid – July to mid-August.
What to visit in Macedonia?
For people who love nature, Macedonia is paradise. Macedonia is an interesting tourist destination thanks to its unique and particularly beautiful nature, rare flora and fauna, many cultural and historical monuments as well as traditional folklore. Mountains, national parks , protected areas and forests of Macedonia are known for their beauty and preservation, and thus very attractive to tourists, offering the possibility to organize various winter and summer sports in nature and the outdoors .
Her extensive wilderness gives them plenty of opportunities for hiking, mountaineering, skiing and other more extreme outdoor activities.
Best places in Macedonia
1-2 Day- Skopje- Capital of Macedonia
Skopje is located on the upper course of the river Vardar, in the middle of Balkan route, connecting Belgrade and Athens
Most of Ottoman monuments of Skopje, many of which originate from the 15th and 16th centuries, are located around likeable shopping districts, which in itself is a rare example of an urban ensemble.
Near the city center, is located Old Bazaar, the Turkish name of Çarşšija, which means market. Old Bazaar, Skopje has grown significantly and reached its peak during the long period of Ottoman rule, as evidenced by over 30 mosques, hamam / bath / and other Ottoman buildings and monuments. The old bazaar of Skopje is now under the protection of the state of Macedonia and contains a number of handicraft small shops and restaurants in the Turkish style.
Walking in the old bazaar, you can find various shops that sell old gold, traditional Turkish costume, cutlery, which are used in Ottoman era.
At the exit of the old bazaar we come to the Stone Bridge
Stone Bridge connects Macedonia Square with the old town and represents a link between the traditional and the modern, between the old and new parts of Skopje.
The stone bridge is one of the most common motif of postcards and photographs of Skopje, but is also a great opportunity to take a picture there, as well as many other tourists. It is especially nice at night, when it shines a special light, and if behind them grasp and ‘Skopje Fortress ‘ , you will get a truly unique sight.
Skopje Fortress Kale is most memorable attractions in Macedonia’s capital structure and that during your stay in Skopje, you should not miss. It is located on a hill near the city center, offering a great view of Skopje.
At the fortress Kale are held many cultural events, the most famous, most visited is Pivolend, dedicated to people who love beer.
In the city center there is a 28 meter high monument to Alexander the Great, next to it there are numerous fountains, sculptures of other historically significant people in Macedonia.
Be sure to visit the preserved ruins of the old railway station ( built in 1941) , where the clock stopped at 5:17 am, the exact time of the quake in 1963.
Favorite tourist destination is a mountain Vodno. Walking is not strenuous and gives a lot of pleasure and a superb view of Skopje.
At the top of the mountain is built 66 meter high Millennium Cross.
The cross was erected in honor of 2000 years of Christianity in Macedonia and abroad. On Vodno you can have the whole city at your fingertips. Do not forget to bring your camera and to immortalize the beauty of the city that is in front of you.
Here are some of the more attractive destinations that we must visit while staying in Skopje :
Cathedral Church which can be seen on almost all the postcards from Skopje , was completed in 1990 , with specific architecture , it is the seat of Macedonian Orthodox Church
Included the remains of the house of Mother Teresa, who was born in Skopje, Parlament
Archaeological Museum, is located on the quay of river Vardar, it can be reached via a number of new bridges which are now constructed.
The Bridge on the culture is one of the most beautiful series of bridges connecting the two lands of city. It contains a lot of numerous sculptures of cultural historic people who have contributed to Macedonia.
Arena Filip II Macedonian, is located next to the main park of the city of Skopje, and the zoo.
3 Day- Canyon Matka
Matka canyon is a narrow lower course of the river Treska, located 15 km northwest of Skopje. Matka Canyon is the habitat of numerous and diverse plants and animals,some of which are unique in Balkan region .
Matka Canyon is the habitat of 77 endemic species of butterflies.
If you are lucky, you will see some wild animals, like ducks swimming lake or wild boar, rabbit or similar animal. Matka Canyon in Macedonia is one of the most popular adventure destinations in the open. Nearby there are several picturesque medieval monasteries and caves / Monastery of St. Nicholas, Monastery of St. Andrew and Holy Mother of God Monastery – Matka Monastery, Monastery of Holy Nedela, Monastery of St. John Chrysostom and others.
In Matka Canyon, next to the monastery of St. Andrew’s is a restaurant with 80 seats, with a garden that overlooks the beautiful lake Matka with 400 seats, which are served excellent authentic Macedonian dishes. Next to the restaurant is small, charmingly decorated hotel, category class A.
Canyon is popular for its numerous underwater caves and crystals.
This day I recommend that you devote your peace of mind and relaxation that offers this canyon and its beauty that enchants.
4 Day Prilep
Prilep is a center of production of high-quality tobacco and cigarettes, the center of metallurgy, electronics, production of lumber, textile and food. Many of the world’s largest manufacturer of cigarettes used by famous tobacco in Prilep, after the first treatment in local factories tobacco.
Prilep is rich in historical monuments that inspire imagination and incredible stories from the past and interesting festivals, events and events that you can visit throughout the year. Prilep officially became part of the Guinness World Record, as prepared 80,191 sarma (traditional dish that consists of twisted cabbage and meat) for every resident of the city. So the city of Prilep tried to break the Guinness world record for the biggest meal of cabbage.
When you visit Prilep need to see is Ali Cair, village in Prilep from the Neolithic and Roman periods where are found 28 monuments with inscriptions names, names of deities and patrons, as well as 27 monuments of cult statues and portraits. Among found cult statues of marble deities Asclepius, Hermes and Bacchus, as well as the female statue and the imperial statue residents.
The seat of King Marko – a legendary figure in Macedonian folk songs – Prilep kept in proportion to the substantial remains of a medieval fortress. Fortress Mark’s tower is located northwest of Prilep, just above the village of Varos.
Do not miss to see the church ” St .Nicholas” of the XIII century, the church ” and” Grave on the undefeated ” , a monument in honor of the victims of fascism, which is currently in the central park of Prilep.
Prilep is a city of entertainment and culture.
Every year there are various cultural events and the most popular is Pivofest where people come from all over the world, and Prilep masquerade. If you are already in Prilep you have to go to the most popular restaurant Macedonian house and try local dishes and drinks.
5 Day – Bitola
Bitola is a city which in the past was called Monastir or monastery or castle consul because there were honorary consuls in seven countries.
Bitola is a city that still has the characteristics of past centuries of importance, when it was the center of diplomacy Ottoman Empire.
In the old part of the city is bazaar well -preserved examples of urban architecture, and also the best example of the old customs for coffee.
The main street of Bitola – Sirok Sokak dominates city with her beauty and special mixture of monumental town of picturesque buildings, oriental and western europeans architecture and is the best-known meeting place for local residents and many visitors. Bitola and the surroundings are very rich in cultural and historical monuments that testify about the significant cultural and spiritual activities: Clock tower, Bezistan / covered oriental market – bazaar / Isak Chelebi Mosque, the mosque sewn / Today Art Gallery / , Synagogue , Church of St. Demetrius , the old downtown – Bazaar , prison tower , Church of the Holy Mother of God … and the famous oriental sweets – lokum , which is produced according to traditional recipes and technology!
Bitola is a city of fashion, trends and styles. It is popular for the movie festival that runs each year.
6 Day Heraklea
Heraclea is the best preserved ancient city of Macedonia, recognizable in the country. It is believed that Heraclea is founded by Philip of Macedonia in the 4th century BC on the caravan route Via Egnatia in the fertile Pelagonia, which allowed prosperity of the city. The mosaics in the archaeological site of Heraclea include not only in Macedonia, but among the best preserved and most precious artistic value of the work of the ancient period. Many of the archaeological finds and parts Heraklea are in excellent condition and still used for summer concerts and theater performances. The archaeological site of Heraclea is located at a distance of 2.5 km from the city of Bitola.
7 – 8 Day Pelister National Park
National Park Pelister is the oldest in Macedonia.
Pelister National Park is located on the slopes of mount Baba in southwestern Macedonia, over the eastern shores of Lake Prespa, in the western part of the Pelagonia plain, only 7 km from the city of Bitola.
Flora and fauna of the National Park Pelister are rich and diverse, including many endemic plant and wildlife. The most important plant species is molika / Pinus pence/.
In winter the National Park Pelister covered with whiteness. Snow falls from November to March, where the winter tourists having fun with winter attractions.
Pelister National Park is the perfect blend of outdoor activities on the mountain, with pleasure at the lake. Pelister National Park allows observation of the landscape whose beauty is breathtaking, and the introduction of rare flora and fauna. Walking takes about 5 to 7 hours, with mountain guides / which are required / for all visitors who are not familiar with the terrain. Adventures in mountain walks are even richer with person that encourage knowledge of visitors of this magnificent region of the wild world of bears, wolves, wild boar … On Pelister are two glacial lakes Big and Small Lake are especially attractive and called them Pelister Mountain eyes.
9- 10 Day Struga
Struga is located on the north side of Lake Ohrid, on the shores of the Black Drin. Struga has a graceful beauty, beautiful sights and numerous monuments, such as roof tiles on the roof of the house Miladinov Brothers, the old bazaar, a centuries-old churches and mosques.The position of Struga on Lake Ohrid allows a more peaceful experience, in relation to living and pulsating Ohrid .
Celebrities that adorn Struga are: Black Drin, the early Christian basilica in the village Oktisi, Church of the Holy Archangel Michael in the village Radozda, cave Church of the Nativity of the Virgin Mary in the village Kalista, village Vevcani.
The village of Vevcani is popular in winter when there is traditional carnival.
In the monasteries it is possible to buy the famous monastery cheese and homemade grape brandy.
Struga is a city of poetry. Throughout the history of Macedonia, the city is praised in many poems and prose.
That’s why every year is held the famous events Struga Days of poetry.
Do not forget to relax and take a walk along the coast of Lake Ohrid.