Located in the north of the country, Skopje is the lovely capital of Macedonia. It is a city with a rich history, but due to two large earthquakes that caused massive damage in the past, unfortunately only a few historical buildings can be found here. However, the survival of these buildings make them extra precious and special. Some of the locations interesting to visit here are the Stone Bridge, the Macedonian Museum, and various old monasteries, mosques, and churches. The bridge is connected between the old and new city parts. Most of the historic places are preserved in the old city. This is where you can experience the atmosphere the city once had. It’s also worth it to go to the Islamic neighbourhood and visit the Old Bazaar where you can find the heart and soul of the city and do some shopping.
The monastery of Saint Naum is also located on Lake Ohrid, about thirty kilometers south of the city with the same name, and is named after Saint Naum. This saint is buried here in this beautiful church and according to the local people you can still hear his heartbeat when you place your ear on his grave and listen carefully. The area surrounding the monastery is stunning and scenic. There is greenery all around and many panoramic views of the mountains and Lake Ohrid.
A visit to the Galičica National Park, located between Lake Ohrid and Lake Prespa, is highly recommended during your trip to North Macedonia. It is a park very suitable for hiking. Depending on your level of physical fitness, you can select the right trail for you. You’ll walk through some of the most beautiful karst limestone mountains in all of Europe. And if you’re strong enough you can climb to the top of the Magaro mountain, where you’ll be rewarded with an enchanting view of the surrounding mountains and lakes. You can also spot a rare lynx here if you’re lucky.
For over a thousand years, the old fortress of Samuel has stood on top of the hill near Ohrid. It was built in the 10th century when Ohrid was the capital of the Bulgarian Empire. Over the centuries, much has been lost inside the fortress, but you can still explore the ruins. It has a perimeter of walls that measure up to about 3 kilometers, parts of which you can walk on. It offers incredible views of the area. You can walk from the old town of Ohrid to the fort, but it is quite a climb.
The Mavrovo National Park is the largest of the three that North Macedonia has. It is located between the Korab, Deshat, and Bistro mountains and contains a large valley and part of the Radika River. There are some beautiful views here and a great diversity in plants and wildlife due to the elevation differences. Bird watching lovers can enjoy trying to spot species such as gray buzzards, imperial eagles, and golden eagles. During the summer this park is suitable for beautiful walks, while in winter it changes into a winter sport destination.