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Macedonia - Excursions from Ohrid

Sightseeing of the old part of the town known by typical architecture, Samuil fortress, the church of St. Sofija, the church of St. Jovan Kaneo, Plaoshnik, Biljana’s springs… Visit of monastery St. Naum and the church St. Naum…
The church of St. Sofia is one of the largest medieval churches on this territory. For a long time it was the cathedral church ("Great Church") of the Ohrid Archiepiscopate whose ecclesiastical authority covered the territories up to the river Danube to the north, the Albanian coast to the west, and the Bay of Thessalonica to the east. The church was probably used as a cathedral way back in the past, in the period of the Czar Samuel who, in the late X century, moved his throne from Prespa to Ohrid. The date of the construction of that church is uncertain because there are no inscriptions that help reveal it. It is also mentioned that today's church was either built or restored during the period of the Archbishop Leo who was on the throne of the Church in the period 1035-1056. Located on the southwestern side of the hill surmounting Lake Ohrid is the church dedicated to St. Jovan Kaneo (St. John the Theologian – Kaneo). It is not certain when it was built and fresco painted. However, a document about the church property suggests that it was built before 1447. The architecture of the church is important when studying the medieval monuments of culture. The monastery of St. Naum is located on the southeast side of Lake Ohrid, in the immediate vicinity of the Macedonian-Albanian border. Its building is linked to the name of St. Naum, the closest associate of St. Clement of Ohrid. Records about the life and work of St. Naum can be found in three literature works dedicated to his life. Towards the end of his life St. Naum of Ohrid built the monastery St. Archangel where he was buried in 910. The church of Naum was similar to the monastery of Clement, St. Pantheleimon, and was built in a trefoil shape. The church of St. Bogorodica Zaumska was built in 136.



Monastery of St. John Bigorski and National Park Mavrovo

The monastery has been built on the slopes of mountain Bistra, surrounded by an exuberant forest, while below, in the near vicinity the crystal waters of the Radika river flow. The monastery affords a magnificent view of the mountain of Korab as well as of the picturesque villages of Rostushe, Velebrdo, Bitushe and Trebishte. In close vicinity the Reka villages of Gari,Osoj,Tresonche, Galichnik, Rosoki and Lazaropole, the places which had given birth to a plead of builders, zographs- icon painters and wood-carvers. The monastery Bigorski had been a lighthouse and mainspring of educational activity. A great number of clergymen, monks and teachers have come out from there to spread the education through all the regions in Macedonia. According to the monastery chronicle the monastery had been built in 1021, when the old icon of St .John the Forerunner had been painted.
The National Park Mavrovo encompasses numerous rivers, which present a real jewel in the crown of beauty for the mountain landscape, with their wild rapids, water-falls and incredible transparency: always full with clear and cold water, the springs never get muddy. One of the most impressive parts of the park is the striking gorges of the river Radika. On the mountain slopes at a very great height, there are 17 glacial lakes, as a further ornament of the mountain landscapes. The biggest lake within the national park is the artificial Mavrovo Lake, which with its clear water, surrounded with forest, is one of the special attractions in this part of Macedonia.



Visiting Eco Village Galichnik and National Park Mavrovo

This is a very interesting and scenic tour and it includes visit to a number of places around the river of Crni Drim, the lake Globocica, Debar Lake, the waterfall in the National Park Mavrovo, Lake Mavrovo, river Radika canyon, the etno village Galicnik. The village of Galicnik is very well known because of the authentic Galicnik wedding that takes place there every year.



Visit Bitola

Trip is leading us to the city of Bitola, where we will visitthe city of Bitola and the antic city of Heraclea Lincestis. Heraclea Lyncestis, also spelled Herakleia Lynkestis, was a town founded by Philip II of Macedon in the middle of the 4th century BC in what was once the north-western region of the ancient kingdom of Macedon. The town was named in honor of the mythological hero Heracles. The meaning of the epithet Lyncestis is "the Land of the Lynx”.
The overwhelming position of Heraclea in the ancient world results from a fortunate coincidence of history and geography. Situated in the fertile plan, to the north protected by Baba mountain and from south by the Siva Voda river, it has always been on the road which, during the period of Roman rule, became interchangeable with the famous road of Via Egnatia from the classical epoch, the link between Adriatic and Aegean coasts.
Bitola is a grand old town that still bears the marks of its turn-of-the-century importance as a center for diplomacy – while also exemplifying the country’s time-honored cafe culture. Bitola is nicknamed “city of consuls” and is the second largest city in the Republic of Macedonia, with a population of nearly 100,000. Near the border with Greece, it straddles the Dragor River at the foot of Mount Pelister, in the Baba mountain range.
Bitola is quite nice, and it is favorite city to the Macedonians, since it has most European atmosphere. It was a seat of consuls in the 19th century and with them they brought the European culture and influenced the local aristocracy, who started living in European fashion and building their houses in mixed neo-classical styles. Bitola is a nice place to visit since Pelister National Park is close, the ancient city of Heraklea is there and it has nice Ottoman architecture and 19th century romantic architecture, so some good examples of everything. It can all be done in a day including enjoying coffee on Shirok Sokak, but you have to put aside a separate day for Pelister National Park.



Archeological Site Stobi and Wine Region

Stobi was an ancient town of Paionia, later conquered by Macedon, and later still incorporated into the Roman province of Macedonia Salutary (now in the Republic of Macedonia). It is located on the main road that leads from the Danube to the Aegean Sea and is considered by many to be the most famous archaeological site in the Republic of Macedonia. Stobi was built where the Erigón river (mod. River Crna) joins the Axiós River (mod.Vardar), making it important strategically as a center for both trade and warfare.
After visiting the archeological site, a vinery will be visited with vine presentation.
Kavadarci is one of the best known wine growing towns in the Balkans as well as in Europe. The wines Smederevka, Kratoshija, Vitach, Country white, Aleksandria and others are produced in the wine cellars of the plant Tikvesh and have been awarded many international awards. They are the pride of the Macedonian wine production.
The town of Kavadarci is the centre of the Tikvesh area which got its name by the old settlement formed at the mouth of the River Tikveshica and the River Crna. The numerous objects made of Roman bricks point to the fact that it was an old Roman settlement, where the 17th century records confirmed its existence in the year 1378.



Krushevo, Treskavec, Prilep – full day

Sightseeing of Krushevo – City – museum, a place for an outings, air-spa, ski-center… It is famous of its archaic architecture. The “Krushevo House” is chapter in an architecture studies book. Visit of Monastery “Treskavec” on the road to Prilep.
Prilep sightseeing
About ten kilometers from Prilep, in the arms of the massive rocks of Zlatovrv, there is the church Mother of God's Ascending, which with the dormitory shelters and the dining room of the Treskavec Monastery, provide God's energy and spiritual tranquility to this wonderful picturesque area. The highland offers a clear view of all Pelagonija Plane, the mountains Pelister, Babuna and Kajmakchalan. Treskavec Monastery is believed to have been built in the 13th Century, during the rule of the Byzantine emperors Andronic 2nd and Mihailo 3rd who, according to the writings on the frescoes at the entrance gate, were the first donors to this monastery. Its complex and diversified architecture points to the fact that the monastery was subjected to be teared down. Most probably, the monastery was renovated in the 14th Century, during the time of the Serb king Milutin. The church has one arc in its basis with a high dome and separated with pillars on a few sides. On the outside, the altar apse is three sided on the east. Under the deep level of plaster walls of the northern chapel, there are frescoes dating from the 14th Century. The porch is also from this century with its two dome towers, placed on the west part of the church. Treskavec Monastery has other valuable artifacts. Most remarkable among them are the ones made in shallow wood carving: the two wing doors and the Emperor's Gate from the 16th Century, then the Kosmitos Cross from the 17th Century. It is worth mentioning the choir seats, the numerous holiday icons and the icons of the Apostles from the 17th and 18th century.



Visit Tetovo

Tetovo is a city in the northwestern part of Macedonia, built on the foothills of Shar Mountain and divided by the Pena River.
The city covers an area of at above sea level and with a population of 70,033 citizens... It is home to State University of Tetovo and the international South East European University, with both having Albanian as the primary language of instruction. The city of Tetovo is the seat of Tetovo municipality.
According to a legend Tetovo means "Teto's place" and myth has it that the town was named after the legendary hero Teto, who supposedly cleared the town of snakes.
Another etymology of the name Tetovo is that it comes from the Slavic word "hteti" meaning: wanting, wanted. Hence, the name Tetovo comes from its original roots Htetovo or a "place where we want to live"
Wonderful landmarks of the Oriental culture include the Turkish hamam from the 15th century, the Arabati Baba Tekke made famous by the dervishes, and especially the Painted Mosque, decorated in Turkish baroque style.



Prespa Lake & Bitola – full day

Drive along the summer resort of Oteshevo and Mt. Galichica (one of the three National Parks in Macedonia) from where there is a magnificent view of both lakes (Ohrid Lake and Prespa Lake). Visiting village Brajchino. Visiting the church St. Gjorgji in Kurbinovo. Sightseeing of Bitola and the Pre-Christian city of Heraklea. Walking thought National Park of Pelister.
The Capital of the North Macedonian Region of Lynkestidos is situated in the immediate vicinity of present-day (Bitola). Heraclea was one of the most important towns in Ancient Macedonia. Its foundation (mid 4-th century B.C.) is related to Philip II. The urban image of Heraclea and its development is in the Hellenic, Roman and Early Christian periods. The influence of Rome, Syria and Alexandria are also felt. In addition to the numerous and varied remains which have been discovered so far, today Heraclea is also renowned for its floor mosaics. These mosaics date back from the 4-th century. The motifs on the mosaics are different, vine peacocks, fountain with gushing water, stags, hinds and birds drinking from the spring of life. They all convey the Christian message of inviting the faithful to follow the teachings of Christ, represented symbolically by hunting scenes or representations of the Christian paradise.



Visit Village Vevchani and Struga

This tour includes visit to Struga and number of villages in the Struga region including the village of Vevcani, fishermen village of Radozda and the cave church st. Bogorodica.



Boat Trip to St. Naum

Our trip will start from Ohrid’s port and continuing along the most beautiful coast of Lake Ohrid with high cliffs and a view of the National Park Galicica. Our destination is the convent of St. Naum. The monastery is a thousand years old. Saint Naum, one of the highest clerics of this region is buried there. We will visit the biggest springs with a boat. It's a great place with sandy beaches and terraces. On the way back we will stop at St. Zaum, a seven hundred year old church that can be only reached by boat. It's a mystical place where under the high cliffs we will have a barbecue.



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