Mountains & Lakes - Macedonia


Day 1 Arrival / Sightseeing of Skopje Rendezvous at the group hotel in Skopje.

Land Only package services begin with the single group transfer from Skopje Airport in the middle of the afternoon. After checking in at the group hotel we will take a sightseeing tour of Skopje, taking in the statues and monuments of old and new Skopje including the bridge stone, Alexander the Great's Fountain and the old Turkish quarter before enjoying our first group dinner together.


Day 2 Walking in the Skopje area- Mt. Vodno and Matka

After breakfast we'll have a full briefing on the week ahead before we take a short transfer to the base of Mt Vodno, close to Skopje. We'll start our walk which takes us to the summit at 1066m from where there are spectacular views of Skopje and beyond. From the summit we'll hike to the Monastery of St Panteleimon from where we'll take a short transfer to the spectacular Matka Canyon. There are some beautiful and important cultural landmarks in the canyon, including the 17th century Monastery of St Nikola Shishevski which sits in a spectacular location beside the waters of the canyon, as well as the Monastery of St. Andreja, built in the 14th century. We'll take a short boat journey in the canyon before transferring to the Mavrovo national park area. Enroute we'll make a stop to visit the painted Mosque of Tetovo which is famed for its remarkable and elaborately decorated facade. After a spectacular first day of walking we'll check into our hotel accommodation in the Mavrovo national park


Day 3 Walking in Mavrovo national park- Mt. Medenica (2166 m asl)

Checkout from the hotel. This morning we take a short vehicle transfer to the trailhead where we begin our walk. We ascend steeply across flowery grasslands to reach our objective for the day, Mt Medenica (2166 m), the highest point of the Bistra Massif. The trail eventually reaches more open and rocky terrain, and we will stop to enjoy glorious views of Mt Korab, the highest peak of Macedonia on the border with Albania (2764 m). From the summit on a clear day one can see Lake Mavrovo. We descend through meadows of flowers and livestock and then onto a rocky trail as we make our way down to the village of Galicnik (lunch stop). From here it's downhill all the way to the village of Jance, where we stay for the night. Before dinner we will visit the Bigorski monastery, afterwards have dinner at a traditional restaurant located next to the monastery


Day 4 Walking in Mavrovo national park- Mt. Golem Krcin (2345 m asl)

Transfer to Ohrid Checkout from the hotel. After a short drive we arrive at the village of Bitushe and begin our hike for the day. Following a path from the village we ascend through lush woodland to reach more alpine terrain via a traverse trail. We reach a small church where we take a rest before making our final push to the summit of Mt Golem Krchin (2345m), which straddles the Albania and Macedonia border. Views from this rugged mountain top stretch across to the peaks of Karadzica, Pelister and even Mt Olympus in Greece. We make our descent via a different route to the village of Rostushe; the trail winds down through meadows and alpine pastures to the beech forest before meeting our vehicle. From here we transfer to the town of Ohrid, Check in and have dinner at a local restaurant within walking distance from the hotel


Day 5 Sightseeing and rest day in Ohrid

Located on the Eastern shore of Lake Ohrid and set against a magnificent mountain backdrop, today we take a well earned break from walking and explore this fairytale town. One of the oldest human settlements in Europe, Ohrid has become an important cultural and spiritual center. We enjoyed visiting a number of cultural and natural sites this morning which included picture postcard views across the town and lake from the Roman Theater, a visit to Tsar Samuel’s fortress and an optional lunch in the old town. Another optional activity is visit of few female-owned and managed artisan businesses in the Ohrid old town, such as Marta Pejoska’s unique handmade filigree design studio/gallery. With the afternoon free, Lake Ohrid has a number of public beaches where you can relax and take a swim. Alternatively you may prefer to visit the oldest Slav monastery of St Pantelejmon, view some of the 800 Byzantine icons or simply wander the cobbled streets and soak up the historic atmosphere. The guide can recommend a nice local restaurant for optional dinner.


Day 6 Walking in Ohrid area (Mt. Jablanica)- Mt. Crn Vrv (2257 m asl) and Vevcanska Lokva glacial lake

Family style dinner in Kuratica Morning transfer from Ohrid to the village of Gorna Belica (cca 1 hour), today we will explore the Jablanica mountain massif, stretching across Macedonia and Albania (on the Albanian side it is national park area). Before 1990, the area was part of a restricted Yugoslav-Albanian border area which was off-limits to visitors. The uppermost areas of Jablanica are influenced by the mediterranean climate, it is rich in small mountain lakes, also offering splendid views of the Ohrid lake, all of this ranks it among the most beautiful areas of Macedonia, still waiting to be discovered by the tourists. Our hike starts in Gorna Belica (1316 m asl), and the highest point is Mt. Crn Vrv (Black Rock) at 2257 m asl. Total length of this horseshoe walk is 12 km, and beside the peak "Black Rock" (Crn Vrv), we will also visit the beautiful glacier lake called "Vevcanska Lokva". After this beautiful hike in the Jablanica mountain massif, the group will be transferred back to Ohrid and enjoy relaxed afternoon. Dinner will be arranged at a family home in the village of Kuratica, a brief transfer (30mins) from Ohrid. Our host family Mickoski, apart from arranging great home cooked dinner, will also present the guests with their homemade rakija (infused with local herbs) and red wine, and also entertain them with short guitar performances


Day 7 Walking in Ohrid area (Galicica national park)- Mt. Magaro (2255 m asl)

Transfer to Skopje Checkout after breakfast. Sitting between Lake Ohrid and Lake Prespa, we take a morning hike to the summit of Mount Magaro (2255 m), the highest point in Galicia National Park. Heading up through a forest trail we steadily gain height to reach wonderful views of the lake and the town of Ohrid below. Known for its variety of flora, our guide will help identify some of the 1000 species found within the national park. Continuing our ascent along a straight forward trail we reach the summit of Magaro and have wonderful panoramic views of Albania and Lake Prespa to the East and Lake Ohrid to the West. Descending to our initial trailhead we join our transfer vehicle for our return journey to Skopje (4 hours). On arrival in the early evening we will check into our hotel and enjoy dinner in the city.




Transportation throughout the journey (English speaking driver, fuel, pay tolls, parking incl.) including single timed group transfer from Skopje Airport on arrival and departure

Tour leader from Macedonia Experience

Accommodation in DOUBLE/TWIN rooms at conveniently located hotels (most of them owned and managed by women) (as per program)

Meals as per program: breakfast at hotels; 5 x lunches (small local restaurants/outdoor locations/family homes/packed lunches); 6 x dinners (local restaurants/family homes) Beverages excl.)

Entrance fees at national parks and archaeological sites

24/7 assistance from Macedonia Experience