Friday, June 14, 2024

North Macedonia – Highway Journey Itinerary for 7-10 days – Chris Journey Weblog

Ohrid Monastery Saint John Theologian North Macedonia - Road Trip Itinerary for 7-10 days

North Macedonia is a tiny landlocked nation in jap Europe and the perfect unspoiled vacation spot within the Balkan. On this North Macedonia itinerary, I take you to an important place of curiosity. It even features a day journey to the Albanian aspect of lake Ohrid. This North Macedonia itinerary contains all UNESCO World Heritage Website, historic prehistoric websites, monasteries, the nation’s finest nature and extra. First, I give a number of North Macedonia journey ideas after which I take you on a day-by-day highway journey. I’m certain this highway journey suggestion will aid you plan your North Macedonian journey.

Planning a North Macedonia highway journey itinerary

North Macedonia is a small nation and may simply be explored by staying a number of nights within the capital Skopje and some at Lake Ohrid. I relatively drive barely greater than to verify out and in resorts each day. You’ll be able to cut up the journeys from Ohrid and Skopje as you want. I made a decision to do 2 nights Skopje, 4 nights Ohrid and once more 3 nights in Skopje. I’ll give some choices to shorten the journey to per week. This needs to be sufficient for the most important sights however first some North Macedonia journey planning ideas.

North Macedonia visa and entry

As I’m from the Netherlands, I didn’t want any visa. Europeans solely want their nationwide ID card which is adequate to enter. In case you are not from Europe, please verify with the embassy for the present North Macedonia entry requirement. A visa needs to be simply obtained if required for many nationalities.

Flights to Macedonia

The principle airport of Macedonia is in Skopje, however a second airport is close to Ohrid. To Ohrid fly largely low-cost carriers from inside Europe and is an efficient alternative if you happen to’re flying from Europe and may discover a appropriate flight. In any other case, Skopje can be your home of arrival with flights from a number of European hubs. A the time of writing nonetheless it’s solely Star Alliance flights and airways that aren’t member of the large three alliances. Flights are low-cost in off-season however might be steep in excessive season. I select Austrian Airways from Amsterdam in enterprise class which was simply over 350 euro. You can additionally verify flights to Thessaloniki in Greece as it’s only a few hours’ drive!

Ohrid City Castle View North Macedonia - Road Trip Itinerary for 7-10 days

Skopje Motels and Lake Ohrid Motels

There are many resorts to select from in each areas. As I’m a Marriott Titanium member one in every of their resorts is at all times my first alternative. Thus, in Skopje I stayed on the Marriott lodge. It has a terrific location downtown. At Lake Ohrid I wished to remain close to the previous city but in addition be capable to get out of city simply. Lodge Villa Kotlar in Ohrid was my alternative and I loved it lots. The situation is only a quick stroll to downtown Ohrid, 200 meters from Ohrid Seaside and there’s straightforward and free parking. The right place to remain whereas on a North Macedonia highway journey.

North Macedonia automotive rental

The place attainable I attempt to hire automobiles from native corporations relatively as the large manufacturers. In Skopje I can extremely suggest Calm down Lease A Automobile Skopje. Examine their web site for charges and reserving. Their service is nice, and the automotive was excellent and really inexpensive. Ensure so as to add the inexperienced card to your rental if you happen to plan to journey to Albania. This North Macedonia itinerary does embrace a day journey there.

Prilip Markovi Kuli Monastery North Macedonia - Road Trip Itinerary for 7-10 days

Different issues to remember whereas travelling in North Macedonia

  • Macedonia makes use of the Denar. Change cash in Skopje. For instance, on the on line casino on the primary sq.. Their alternate price is superb. Change charges on the airports are horrible. If you really want to then change only a bit.
  • When you determine to not have a rental the 2 days in Skopje, then it’s straightforward to take a taxi to or from the airport. It takes about 20 minutes. You’ll be able to hire a automotive from Skopje in addition to Calm down Lease A Automobile Skopje as an workplace downtown.
  • Whereas driving in North Macedonia take care on two lane roads within the mountains. Locals drive quick and typically not respecting all the protection guidelines. When you take care, will probably be completely secure.
  • When visiting monasteries have in mind to decorate modest.
  • Eat good native meals! It’s low-cost and scrumptious. I gives you some strategies within the day-by-day clarification of this North Macedonia itinerary beneath.

Day 1: North Macedonia itinerary: Arrival & Skopje orientation

The arrival of my flight was within the afternoon. I used the rest of the afternoon to get the rental automotive, alternate cash and to select up some craft beer at Pivoteka Beer store. I additionally finetuned this North Macedonia itinerary final minute. Though it was a brief flight I did get drained. I went for an early superb genuine Macedonian dinner on the Outdated Metropolis Home. The Outdated Metropolis Home restaurant I can extremely suggest because the meals was superb. I went to mattress early as I didn’t know the period of time; I’d require the following day to see Skopje.

Day 2: Skopje metropolis journey

Skopje, particularly the previous city, is a small capital metropolis. A Skopje metropolis journey might be executed in a day if not much less is my expertise. Skopje was based again within the 3rd century BC and was of nice significance by way of the ages. Present Skopje is only a few many years previous as a result of an earthquake within the sixties that levelled a lot of the metropolis. Most buildings now are new however few older stay. All of the locations of curiosity are inside a brief stroll of Sq. Macedonia. I’ll record all Skopje sights in probably the most environment friendly strolling order beginning at Sq. Macedonia.

Skopje Square Macedonia Alexander the Great North Macedonia - Road Trip Itinerary for 7-10 days
  • Sq. Macedonia and the statue of Alexander the Nice. It was constructed in 2011 for the 20th anniversary of the Macedonian Independence.
  • Mom Teresa Home. Situated at her delivery home the place she lived till right here 18th birthday. A small museum value visiting.
  • Porta Macedonia (Arc of Triumph) with lovely carvings of Macedonian historical past.
  • Stone Bridge. Because the title says a stone bridge which dates to the 6th century when Macedonia was below Byzantine rule.
  • Museum of Archaeology and Museum of Macedonian Battle. Situated on the banks of the Vadar river and a should see.
  • Daut Pasha Hamam which now homes an artwork gallery.
  • Now stroll into the previous bazaar and simply wander the streets in the direction of the Nationwide Museum of Macedonia. You’ll come throughout numerous mosques, Ottoman Inns (Kapan Han, Suli Han), Clock Tower, the Bedesten (a bazaar inside a bazaar for probably the most valuable gadgets).
Skopje Bridge North Macedonia - Road Trip Itinerary for 7-10 days

When you go to all of the museums the above will take about 4-5 hours. I made a decision to name it a day and go to the St. Saviour Church, Kale Fortress and Museum of Modern Artwork the following day after the Kokino half day journey. In case you are not serious about visiting all of the museums, you may see all locations of curiosity after or earlier than the Kokino day journey. It could secure 1 day on this North Macedonia itinerary. Personally, nonetheless I at all times go to the Nationwide Museum and Archaeological Museum of a rustic to know extra of its historical past. I loved Skopje as it’s small and nice.

SHORTEN THIS NORTH MACEDONIA ITINERARY: Do day 2 and three on the identical day which is well attainable. You’ll be able to go to the fortress direct after arrival to secure a while as effectively.

Day 3: Kokino day journey & extra of Skopje

The Archaeo-astronomical Website Kokino is an historic astronomical platform from the Bronze Age only recently found in 2001. It’s simply over an hour drive from Skopje in the direction of the Serbian border. The Archaeo-astronomical Website Kokino is, actually, over marketed as a vacationer attraction in Macedonia as “the Stonehenge of Macedonia”. Sure, it will be significant and don’t get me incorrect, it’s value going! I merely needed to go as it’s a tentative UNESCO World Heritage Site. If the guard is there, you’ll have to pay a small entrance price of about 2 euro. He arrived simply once I departed. It takes about an hour to discover the positioning.

Kokino Old Wall North Macedonia - Road Trip Itinerary for 7-10 days

The Archaeo-astronomical Website Kokino is believed to be from the threerd century BC as numerous artifacts had been discovered and dated to that point. There are a number of thrones and ceremonial platforms to discover. Ensure to stroll the complete circle as you in any other case may miss the ceremonial wall!

It’s an attention-grabbing website and for certain value including to a North Macedonia itinerary. I returned in time for late lunch in Skopje which I had on the Outdated City Brewery. The shaslik is scrumptious as is their beer. On day 2 I skipped Skopje Fortress & the Ascension of Jesus church which I visited at the present time. Skopje is small so it’s straightforward to combine day 2 and three of this North Macedonia itinerary.

Kokino Throne North Macedonia - Road Trip Itinerary for 7-10 days

Day 4: North Macedonia itinerary continued: Skopje to Ohrid through Prilep

There are two routes from Skopje to Ohrid which, till the northern freeway is accomplished nearly take the identical time. I like to recommend going by way of Prilep a minimum of as soon as. Both going to Ohrid or going again to Skopje. It’s not concerning the metropolis Prilep however the rocky mass known as Markovi Kuli in the midst of the valley. This pure phenomenon is of explicit curiosity because it’s not discovered elsewhere and subsequently inscribed as a tentative UNESCO World Heritage Website.

Prilip Markovi Kuli Fort North Macedonia - Road Trip Itinerary for 7-10 days

To get there simply put your GPS to Markovi Kuli and it’ll take you there. On the entrance signal simply proceed the highway till it will get to slender and inaccessible by automotive. Stroll the rest to the as soon as greatest tower of the Balkans. You have got lovely views right here of the massif and when executed return and go to the Holy Mom of God (Treskavec Monastery) within the northern half. It has lovely fresco’s inside. Additionally it is attainable to hike between the 2 locations however you would wish somebody to drive the automotive or stroll each methods which is just too time consuming for this North Macedonia itinerary. From Prilep proceed to Ohrid.

ADDITIONAL STOP: When you’re like me and don’t thoughts lengthy days then go to Saint George Church in Kurbinovo. It’s additionally a tentative UNESCO World Heritage Website simply close to Lake Prespa. It would add about 1:15 hours to the journey together with the extra driving.

North Macedonia Itinerary Day 5: Ohrid previous city day journey

Ohrid is a lovely city on the shores of Lake Ohrid and a should place to incorporate on a North Macedonia itinerary. I stayed a 10-minute stroll north of downtown in Lodge Villa Kotlar. It’s ideally positioned close to Ohrid Seaside, and also you stroll very quickly to the previous metropolis. Parking can be out there totally free which is ideal if you happen to comply with this North Macedonia highway journey itinerary as a result of within the previous city no automobiles are allowed.

An Ohrid previous city day journey doesn’t take a full day, so I made a decision to begin round 10 AM and end round 4 PM. From the lodge I walked alongside the shores as much as the fort first after which continued by way of the previous city to the decrease half. The next locations of curiosity are a must-see. I’ll record them in finest order to keep away from strolling up and down the hilly Ohrid previous city.

  • Church of Saint John the Theologian
  • Outdated Metropolis Park with the Church of Saints Clement and Panteleimon
  • Samoil’s Fortress
  • Vintage Theater of Ohrid
  • Higher Outdated Gate with partitions
  • Church of Holy Mary Perybleptos and the Icon Gallery
  • Church of St. Sophia (lunch tip: Sveta Sofija Restaurant)
  • Museums Robev Household Home (Ohrid Museum) and Hristo Uzunov Home
  • Metropolis Sq. and from there stroll the purchasing avenue
Ohrid Monastery Saint John Theologian North Macedonia - Road Trip Itinerary for 7-10 days

You’ll move different attention-grabbing buildings and extra church buildings. There’s sufficient time to get pleasure from all of the streets of Ohrid! For dinner, I extremely suggest Belvedere for a tremendous BBQ!

Day 6: North Macedonia itinerary into nature: Mavrovo Hike

Nationwide Park Mavrovo is a big nature reserve in northeast North Macedonia. It’s actual wilderness which crosses into Albania and Kosovo as effectively. North Macedonia’s tallest mountain, Mount Korab is positioned there as effectively. On the foot of the mountain, deep into the park, is an historic beech forest which is on the UNESCO World Heritage Website. This Primeval Beech Forest website is a transborder website and since I “hunt” UNESCO websites I merely needed to go to. When you plan mountain climbing it is a hike you wish to do!

Mavrovo Hike Views North Macedonia - Road Trip Itinerary for 7-10 days

There is only one hike that goes by way of the forest which begins at Ribnica to Mount Kabash summit. It’s roughly 8-9 kilometers a method. The terrain is just not that tough however its wilderness, the trail not at all times totally clear and there are wild bears! Go together with a neighborhood information (contact Misko by e-mail, finest licensed information!) in case you are like me not an skilled mountaineer. I drove 2 hours from Ohrid and hiked the primary 7 kilometers (and again) solely as rain was coming so I skipped the summit. I did make it to the primeval beech forest which is historic and pristine. So lovely! On the way in which again I made a fast cease at St. Joseph Monastery which is a pilgrim’s place. I used to be again in Ohrid in time for once more a big BBQ dinner at Belvedere restaurant. Sure I really like meat.

Mavrovo Hike Beech Forest North Macedonia - Road Trip Itinerary for 7-10 days

Day 7: Highway journey to Albanian aspect of Lake Ohrid

Lake Ohrid borders North Macedonia and Albania. When you make a North Macedonia highway journey, I extremely suggest together with the Albanian aspect of Lake Ohrid as effectively. Why do that Albania Lake Ohrid day journey? As a result of the sights in jap Albania are all positioned there. All others are close to the coast and thus this protects time. Begin on the Illyrian Tombs of Selca e Poshtme (take the northern border crossing) that are the stays of a settlement courting to the 5-2nd century BC. One it was residence to the Illyrian kings and now a Tentative UNESCO World Heritage Website. I then suggest driving to Lin to see the previous basis of the cathedral. It has lovely mosaics and are a part of the Albanian UNESCO Website Lake Ohrid.

Illyrian Tombs Basse Selca North Macedonia - Road Trip Itinerary for 7-10 days

From Lin proceed alongside the coast to Pogradec for lunch and time at the perfect seashore of Lake Ohrid. It’s a small metropolis however for locals a vacationer vacation spot. This doesn’t imply it’s costly because the meals is even cheaper as in North Macedonia. I had lunch for 2 folks for simply twenty euro. This included a big T-Bone, salad, bread, and beers. As I’m not that a lot into seashores and the climate was not good both I made a decision to already go to Sveti Naum which is a monastery simply throughout the border (southern crossing) into North Macedonia. That is together with on day 8 of this North Macedonia itinerary because it makes extra sense on that day. When you do keep in Pogradec I do suggest staying till dinner as meals is simply so low-cost there.

Pogradec Beach Albania North Macedonia - Road Trip Itinerary for 7-10 days

Day 8: Lake Ohrid day journey & Nationwide Park Galicica hike

There are some websites round Lake Ohrid left for this North Macedonia itinerary. Two of that are included within the UNESCO World Heritage website Lake Ohrid as effectively: Sveti Naum and the Pure Park Galicica. Choose in Google maps “Lipova – Vrv Magaro Start line” which is the place to begin of the hike into Pure Park Galicica. In contrast to the Mavrovo Hike I included on this North Macedonia itinerary you don’t per se want a information right here. The hike takes approximate 4 hours, however I solely made it midway to the highest when thunder and rain got here. It was not secure to proceed. The primary a part of the hike goes by way of pine forest after which you’ll stroll within the open. Ensure to hike the circle to the highest counterclockwise as it’s simpler. For lunch head over to Sveti Naum, which is a monastery but in addition a seashore with a lot meals choices.

National Park Galicica North Macedonia - Road Trip Itinerary for 7-10 days

Sveti Naum or Saint Naum monastery is a lovely monastery on the coast of Lake Ohrid. He lived in within the 8th century and is related to the founders of the Cyrillic writing. He based the Pliska Literary College (you may go to the stays in Bulgaria) and worded the rest of his dwell on the Ohrid Literary College. His resting place is on the Saint Naum monastery which he himself based. Immediately, the monastery is partly a lodge, and the seashore is stuffed with eateries and place to drink. You’ll be able to also have a boat journey on the small lakes. Fairly touristic however it’s a should go to on Lake Ohrid shores.

When you begin early, you can also make a cease on the Bay of Bones Museum to find out how pile dwellers lived centuries in the past. It’s an attention-grabbing museum however you probably have seen comparable museums up to now, it’s not value going. Altogether an extended day stuffed with nature and tradition. One which you could do if you happen to comply with this North Macedonia itinerary.

Sveti Naum Lake Ohrid North Macedonia - Road Trip Itinerary for 7-10 days

Day 9: Day journeys from Skopje

I didn’t plan any of those day journeys from Skopje as I deliberate at the present time to get a PCR Take a look at to journey residence due to the pandemic (summer time 2021). The Netherlands nonetheless modified the foundations, and I didn’t require this check anymore, so I all of a sudden had a further day in Skopje. When you’ve got time, I can suggest them. They will even be executed as half day journeys on sooner or later as I did.

  • Climb as much as mount Vodno to the millennial cross. The largest millennial cross on the earth which it’s also possible to climb. The climb up the mountain takes about 90 minutes and provides nice views over Skopje. After the climb make sure that to go to the St. Panteleimon monastery close by. It has a lovely painted inside.
  • A 40-minute drive away from Skopje is the Matka canyon the place you can also make a hike or take a ship journey to a cave. There’s a monastery as effectively and loads of eating places to have lunch. When you’ve got time, it’s value going.

SHORTEN THIS NORTH MACEDONIA ITINERARY: Merely skip at the present time!

Day 10: North Macedonia itinerary: departure

My Austrian Airways flight was early afternoon, so I had an excellent night time of sleep. An excellent breakfast on the Marriott Skopje earlier than heading to the airport. I had dropped the automotive already the night time earlier than to avoid wasting time on departure. One factor: don’t come early on the airport. It’s small and there’s nothing to do at Skopje airport.

Once I began planning this North Macedonia highway journey itinerary, I assumed it will be a mean journey. Now, after driving across the nation, taking in all its magnificence I can say that it’s actually a terrific vacation spot within the Balkan. It’s unspoiled with lovely nature and tradition and since it’s small every part is well in attain. Then there are a budget costs for meals which is scrumptious. Altogether North Macedonia is a superb vacation spot to get away from over tourism. I hope to return sooner or later to journey into Kosovo and southern Serbia.

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Did you go to North Macedonia too or do you could have questions? Please go away a remark on the backside of the web page. Love to listen to from you!

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