Include Bulgaria in Your Balkan Tour

No tour around the Balkans can be complete without a stop at scenic Macedonia – a country with an abundant natural and historical diversity. Whether you’re travelling with close friends or in a large group over 20, Balkan Tales knows what to show you:

  • All tours are put together with the traveler in mind – your individuality shines through in the travel itinerary.
  • You are taken to the most wondrous locations that commercial tours tend to skip.
  • The level of organization is high and every detail is taken care of, so you only have to think about taking great photos.

Browse through our suggestions below for your own tour ideas. Balkan Tales is also open to any questions and inquiries about special hobbies and requests you want featured on the tour.


Macedonian cities to visit

[accordion-item title=”Skopje”]

  • In Skopje, step on ground which has history dating far back, to 4000 BC: that is testified by the Neolithic remains found in the ancient Kale fortress.
  • The Museum of Macedonia and the Archeological Museum will tell you of glorious periods via their exhibits.
  • Don’t miss the National Gallery, housed in two former Turkish baths.

The restored fortress, rebuilt in medieval style, lends a picturesque appeal. Skopje is also famed for the Memorial House dedicated to Mother Teresa – she was baptized there. The City Museum is in the former train station, or rather in its remains after the 1963 earthquake which also brought the fortress down. Also musts to visit are the Museum of Macedonian Struggle, and the Holocaust Memorial Centre.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Ohrid”]

  • Ohrid will welcome you with the famed lake which, together with the city, belongs with UNESCO’s sites of world heritage.
  • The ancient theatre, built in 200 BC, witnessed gladiator fights, but now just the lower sections remain. Its acoustics makes it auspicious for modern performances.
  • The St Naum Monastery is rumored to have been founded by St Naum himself, and is located on the lake, 29 km away from Ohrid.

According to legends, it once had 365 churches; they now also abound, so visit at least the most notable ones. St. Vrači is a church whose frescoes date from the 14th century, and so does an icon shown on one of the Macedonian banknotes.[/accordion-item]

Important landmarks

[accordion-item title=”Matka Canyon”]

  • This canyon, near Skopje, boasts 5,000 hectares of fantastic nature.
  • In it, there is Macedonia’s oldest artificial lake, Matka.
  • You can visit several medieval monasteries in the canyon.

The canyon area will show you a bundle of interesting sites. The caves there are 10; the shortest is 20 metres, and the longest one’s length is 176 metres. Other impressive landmarks are the two pits, over 35 metres deep. Special mention will deserve the Vrelo Cave, belonging with the top sites worth visiting worldwide. There, two lakes are located at the end, and in the middle the highest stalactite will impress you. It has a name derived owing to its shape: Pine Cone.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Korab Mountain”]

  • This mountain is rightly featured on Macedonia’s coat of arms.
  • Its peak forms the frontier with Albania, and the Albanian section belongs with a nature park.
  • The mountain has two passes and five peaks rising to over 2,000 metres.

The mountain range itself is rugged and comprised of shale and limestone only. If you want to climb Mount Korab, the mountain’s highest peak, join the international expedition organized yearly by the mountain club in Skopje. Alpine, ice and rock climbing are popular activities in the mountain, as well as technical mountaineering and ski mountaineering. This is a heaven for aficionados of nature’s rugged beauty.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Šar Mountains”]

  • In Šar Mountains, over half of which is in Macedonia, you can admire mountain landscapes and peaks covered with snow and ice.
  • The mountains reach the other notable mountain, Korab, in the southwest.
  • The Šar peaks can be seen on Skopje’s coat of arms.

The lower areas of the mountains are covered with forests, and the upper one with pastures, the largest pasture area in Europe. They are fascinating with the flowers dotting the areas. Another name you can hear for this mountain is Carska Planina, or Tsar’s Mountain. It is due to the two capitals, Prizren and Skopje, and, too, to the monasteries in the area. Go to Šar for unforgettable hiking and mountain biking.[/accordion-item]

What to do:

[accordion-item title=”Hiking”]

  • Explore Šar Mountains, especially the well marked trail from Staro Selo to Ljuboten peak.
  • Again in Šar, take the exciting trail to Kozja Stena and to Livadichko Ezero.
  • Hiking in the Korab mountain will be auspicious for showing unparalleled panoramas, too.

The Staro Selo – Ljuboten trail offers medium difficulty, through forests and pastures, and show off the western mountain part’s beauty. The Ljuboten peak is 2,499 metres high. The trail to Kozja Stena and to Livadichko Ezero will show three kinds of relief, rocks, the ridge, and the lower part with the lake. For hiking, choose July and August as the best months.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Pilgrimage”]

  • For pilgrimage, start from Skopje, with the Sacred Heart Cathedral.
  • The Dormition, in Strumica is another cathedral and highlight for pilgrims.
  • The monasteries of St. John the Baptist and that of St. Joakim Osogovski are other pilgrimage destinations.

The Skopje Cathedral was destroyed by an earthquake, and then rebuilt. A museum to Mother Teresa, born in Skopje, can be visited there. The Strumica Dormition Cathedral was finished in 1931. The Catholic Church of the country has its Apostolic Exarchate there. St. John Monastery boasts ancient wood carving, and an icon proclaimed to have healing powers. The 11th century established St. Joakim Osogovski is near Kriva Palanka; founded by the anchorite Joakim, whose relics attract pilgrims, it draws pilgrim crowds.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Ohrid saint mother of god aumska”]

  • The church’s name is St. Bogorodica Perivleptos, meaning Mother of the Most Glorious God.
  • Although it was built in 1295, it is completely preserved; the building materials were baked bricks and limestone.
  • Inside the church, Saint Clement’s sculpture stands, dating from the late 13th century.

The Saint Mother of God is a fascinating church in Ohrid, Macedonia. It dates from medieval times. The architecture, unique not only for those times, is in what is known as Palaelogus style. The frescoes date from the 13th and the 14th centuries. By the entrance door, on the left, a belfry stands, with a bell which was donated in 1924. To the right of the church, the Ohrid Icons Gallery is located.

The present name, Church of Saint Clement, is due to the transferral of Clement of Ohrid’s relics to it from Saint Pantheleimon Church, which was turned into a mosque.[/accordion-item]

It Takes One Email to Organize Your Macedonia Tour!

Balkan Tales creates your custom tour itinerary in a few days. The process is easy – either, use the questionnaire to give us a basic idea of your group or directly communicate your wishes to us via [email].

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