Macedonia holidays combine lake-side towns and cities bursting with ancient history, evenings spent tucking into sumptuous regional cheeses and wines, and explorations of national park landscapes networked by hiking trails and home to some of Europe’s last wild brown bears.
The old and new stand side-by-side in Macedonia’s capital, Skopje, where black-clad orthodox priests walk the same streets as fashion-conscious teenagers. The Ottoman influence is still apparent in the Old Bazaar and the slim minarets of the mosques while, during the summer months, music festivals and cultural arts events highlight the city’s youthful outlook. Away from Skopje, visitors to Macedonia discover a land of gleaming lakes and rivers, brooding mountains and remote stone villages with stunning, well-preserved monasteries. The picturesque but sleepy town Ohrid, one of the top visitor attractions in Macedonia, on the lake of the same name, comes alive in the summer when visitors are drawn to its idyllic location and UNESCO-listed churches, basilicas and monasteries.
For nature and wildlife-lovers, Macedonia offers something special. Travellers have the opportunity to join conservationists and park rangers to get stuck in and protect Macedonia’s stunning national parks, while also discovering the local flora and fauna with a local guide. Experiences range from watching eagles hunt and helping out at a deer conservation centre in Mavrovo National Park, to spending a night in a wildlife hide to watch out for brown bears and wolves in Pelister National Park.