fra+5 Day Culture and History tour of Macedonia

Day 1

  • Skopje is the capital city of the Republic of Macedonia and one of the main places that you need to visit in Macedonia. It was inhabited for more than 4000 years before the birth of Christ.
  • Throughout the centuries it was constantly destroyed and rebuild by many conquerors and nations until the devastating earthquake on July 26th 1963 where 90% of the city lied in ruins. Yet the city still managed to rise up from the ashes once again and restored its old glory offering us a unique place for the start of our tour.

Day 2

  • The tour starts at the museum of the city of Skopje, where you will get some basic info regarding getting around in Macedonia. The walk starts along Macedonia Street towards the square. Along the way is the Memorial House of Mother Teresa built in honor of a great humanitarian and a winner of Noble Prize for Peace. Mother Teresa was born in Skopje, in 1910.
  • The tour continues towards Macedonia Square which has undergone tremendous restoration in the last few years with a lot of new monuments and buildings around, representing Macedonian cultural heritage and history.
  • From Macedonia Square we continue towards the Old Bazaar passing over The Stone Bridge which is one of the most recognizable symbols of Skopje.
  • Once we get into the Bazaar, the first thing you notice is the feeling that you have gone back in times, returning to the days when the bazaar was swarming with people from all around the Balkan trading their wares and services.
  • In the Old Bazaar you will visit the famous Daut Pasha Hamam (bath house) which was built in the 15th century and that holds the National Art Museum. After that you will visit Kapan An (Han) which was also built in the 15 century by Isa Beg.
  • Lunch will be served at one of the restaurants in the Old Bazaar.
  • After the lunch you will visit the Saint Savior church in the Old Town which holds the monument of the most famous Macedonian revolutionary Goce Delcev. In this area you will visit the Skopsko Kale which is the most famous middle-century fortress in the Skopje region.
  • The rest of the day is planned for the Matka Canyon with its outstanding work of nature, preserved natural and geographic characteristics in which rare and endemic species found their escape. In Matka vicinity there are also lots of churches one of which is the church of the Saint. In Matka as an option you will have a boat ride and visit the millenniums old caves.
  • After visiting Matka we will continue our way back to Skopje for overnight.

 

 

 

 

Day 3

  • Breakfast in the hotel in Skopje.
  • Departure for Ohrid – the Macedonian Jerusalem
  • Visit of the “Painted Mosque” in Tetovo.
  • Visit of the Monastery of Saint John the Baptist (Bigorski Monastery)– the most famous Macedonian monastery, Macedonian cultural treasure
  • Lunch at Janche Vilige - the picturesque Macedonian village
  • Visit of Vevchani Vilige – visit of the famous “Vevchani Republic”
  • Arrival and overnight in Ohrid.

Day 4

  • The day starts with the breakfast in the hotel in Ohrid.  Ohrid is a city on the eastern shore of Lake Ohrid. It has about 42,000 inhabitants making it the seventh largest city in the country and the most visited tourist destination in Macedonia. Ohrid was known for the fact that once had 365 churches one for each day of the year and has been referred as the "Macedonian Jerusalem". The city is rich in culture, religion, picturesque houses and monuments which hold on to the traditional Macedonian architecture from centuries ago.
  • The city is rich in picturesque houses and monuments while tourism is predominant because of the special natural and cultural surrounding of the area. First we will visit the Upper Gate which is fortification surround the Old Town crowned with the King Samoul Fortress (the most famous medieval Macedonian King). The area offers the most beautiful sight on the Lake of Ohrid.
  • After that, you will visit the Ancient Theater.  The theatre is the only visible monument from ancient times. It is also the only Hellenistic theatre in Macedonia; the other three are from Roman times.
  • You will visit the Archeological site of Plaosnik / Saint Clement of Ohrid. It is a place that has been very important religious center since early Christian times, if not before. It is the site of the first university in Europe, opened in the 10th c. and it is the place where the Cyrillic alphabet was created. The church you see is a reconstruction of the church St. Clement built when he came here and opened the university. The 5 nave early Christian basilica in the middle of which the church stands is from the 5th century.
  • You will also pay visit to the famous church of Saint Sophia which was built in the 11 century and it is the Cathedral of the Ohrid archbishops. Inside the church is the biggest composition of 11th century frescoes preserved in the world. The main altar has scenes from the Old Testament and an emotional procession of angels bowing to Virgin Mary.
  • You will visit the famous church dedicated the the Holy Mother of God Perivleptos. The church was built and painted in 1295. It is dedicated to Virgin Mary, Perivlepta (from Περίβλεπτος) is an attribute given to her meaning "the Omnisicent and Clairvoyant".
  • In the courtyard of St. Bogorodica Perivlepta church is the Ohrid icon collection with some of the best examples of the iconographic art in Macedonia. It is considered to be the second most important and valuable collection of icons in the world after the Moscow collection
  • After that you will visit the Ohrid Old Bazaar with its picturesque craftsmen and shops.  It is a simple bazaar consisting of just one street. It starts with the food market (it used to be the animal market in the past). After the market the bazaar begins with a small square. On the square there is a 1000 year old tree and a nice fountain. Above the square the clock tower of Ohrid stands. As you walk down the bazaar on your left there are couples of stone stores, which is the only section of original stores in the bazaar. In the past, the bazaar was covered with grape vines, protecting shoppers from the sun and the rain. Very few crafts are preserved. The bazaar ends with the main square that used to be the food market in the past.
  • As an option you can visit a pearl shop where you can buy the worlds famous Ohrid pearls.
  • Lunch will be served at one of the restaurants in Ohrid.
  • After the lunch we will departure for the St. Naum of Ohrid Monastery. It is breathtaking setting on a plateau over Ohrid Lake and Galičica Mountain towering from behind. It was founded in the 910 by St. Naum, but the present-day church was built in the 16th century. Of the original church just the side chapel with the grave of St. Naum still stands. The frescoes were painted in 1806 (the side chapel frescoes depict the life and miracles of St. Naum); in the first chamber of the church look for the fresco of St. Cyril and Methody and their students including St. Clement and St. Naum. The icon screen was made in 1711 and it is the oldest completely preserved wooden high icon screen in Macedonia.
  • You will also enjoy the boat ride on the springs of the river Crn Drim, a breathtaking natural setting with crystal clear waters.
  • On our way back to Ohrid we will visit the archeological site Bay of Bones. It is museum on water dating back to 1200 years BC.
  • After this we will departure for the hotel and overnight in Ohrid.

 

 

Day 5

  • After the breakfast in the hotel in Ohrid we will departure for the city of Bitola. Bitola is the second largest city in Macedonia located in the south-western part of the country. The city still bears the marks of the diplomacy and is well known as “the city of the consuls”. Bitola is located on an important strategic and trade point near the Greek border at the base of Pelister Mountain which presents one of the three National Parks in Macedonia.
  • In Bitola we will walk through the most famous street Sirok Sokak – the Wide Street and we will visit small churches in the town. You will see the tall Clock Tower and have an opportunity to see the centuries old Bezisten – the covered market.
  • You will also experience the ambient of old time diplomatic city by visiting the old consulates. Visit of the Magaza is planed which is the most famous historic Stock Exchange now being an arts museum.
  • We continue our way toward Stoby Winery for lunch and wine tasting.
  • Transfer to the airport and flight departure. 

 

 

Tour organized by:

Macedonia Holidays and Tours

email: [email protected]

tel:+38922400513

 

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