Hiking, nature and discovery in North Macedonia

Duration : 8 days

North Macedonia

Level : easy

from 660 € / p. from 2 to 20 persons

Infos & Booking

Description

Located between the West and the East, very close to the Mediterranean Sea, on the vestiges of the first Christian kingdoms of Antiquity and the great Ottoman period, Macedonia is a country where the cultural heritage is incredibly dense and complex.

You will discover its ancient history through its well-preserved archaeological sites and its incredibly beautiful religious monuments. Added to this, the incredible hospitality of its inhabitants and its traditions kept intact, you will discover a way of life that has become rare in Europe, through an exotic journey.

Depending on availability, the guide can also be a French-speaking Macedonian guide who was the second woman from the Balkans to climb the 7 highest peaks in the world.

Program

D1: Flight to Skopje, North Macedonia.
Arriving at Skopje airport, meet your English-speaking guide.
Destroyed by an earthquake in 1963, Skopje was able to completely rebuild and offer a unique experience. You will appreciate a city separated between two cultures and two different lifestyles between the Albanians of Macedonia with its old Ottoman bazaar and the Macedonians with the "new city".

D2: Skopje - Matka canyon - Janche.
Let's go to Matka canyon, a must in North Macedonia.
You will embark on a boat through the canyon to explore the Vrelo Caves, which are considered among the deepest underwater caves in the world.
Then go to Mavrovo National Park. On the road you will make a stop in Tetovo to discover its painted Mosque of Sarena Dzamija dating from the 15th century. It is one of the most beautiful mosques in Macedonia.
In Mavrovo National Park you will enjoy magnificent landscapes with Mavroro lake and Radika canyon. You will stop at the Monastery of Saint Jovan Bigorski, located on the heights of the canyon, which is one of the most beautiful monasteries in Macedonia.
You will then continue to the small village of Janche,  where you will have a traditional dinner to discover Macedonian gastronomy.

D3: Hike from Janche to Galichnik, tranfer to Ohrid.
After breakfast, start of the hike through sumptuous mountain landscapes. Walk along a path of historic importance connecting the village of Janche and the old trade route of the Radika river to one of the most famous villages in MacedoniaGalichnik (approximately 500 meters of positive difference in altitude).
With its traditional and well-preserved architecture, the village of Galichnik is renowned for its local cheeses, Kashkaval and Belo Sirenje.
Back to Janche in the afternoon and transfer to Ohrid.
City listed as World Heritage by UNESCO and sublime city by the lake, Ohrid represents for many, the culmination of the Macedonian experience, a Kingdom of light and water and a reference to the ancient ruins of the traditional kingdom of Macedonia. You will discover its historic heritage, well preserved like the Church of St Jovan or the ancient theater of the Roman Empire.

D4: Kayak Day on Ohrid lake.
Day of kayaking to explore the unique natural spaces of Ohrid lake. You will reach the small village of Trpejca for lunch and taste the carp from the lake.
Back to Ohrid in the afternoon.

D5: Hiking in Galitchitsa National Park.
Hiking day in the splendid Galitchitsa National Park, with the ascent to the Magaro peak, the highest point of Galitchitsa, which rises to 2,255 meters above sea level.
From an altitude of 2,000 meters you can enjoy a beautiful view of the two lakes in the south of North Macedonia, Ohrid and Prespa lakes, also called the "Eyes of Galitchitsa".
After climbing the summit of Galitchitsa, you will go down to the sources of Black Drim river and its crystal clear water and reach the St Naum Monastery. Surrounded by lush greenery and built in the 10th century, the monastery is a refuge of tranquility on the border between Albania and Macedonia.

D6: Prespa lake - Stenje - Bitola.
Head towards Stenje and cruise on Prespa lake, the second lake of the south of Macedonia, which shares the borders between Macedonia, Albania and Greece.
You will discover Golem Grad, "the island of the Pelicans" which has a large wildlife of turtles, great cormorants, snakes and pelicans. The ruins, the birds and the beauty of another world make it an essential place to explore.
You will return to Stenje after the excursion and you will have a local lunch to enjoy a traditional Macedonian meal with carp from Prespa lake in particular.
After lunch, you will leave for Bitola, the second largest city in North Macedonia. Guided tour of the city of consuls. You will discover a Mediterranean-style city with its churches, mosques, old Ottoman bazaar and beautiful neoclassical houses.

D7: Popova Kula - Skopje.
Continue your drive to reach the Popova Kula vineyard. You will discover the wine culture of a small Macedonian vineyard located on the heights of a hill and offering a magnificent panoramic view of the region.
Return to Skopje for a free afternoon to buy souvenirs in the old city bazaar and enjoy your last day in North Macedonia.
Possibility to go to the "Tvrdina Kale" fortress offering a nice view on the Capital of North Macedonia.

D8: Flight back to France.
After breakfast, free time until your transfer to Skopje airport for your return flight.

The price includes

  • Airport - city return transfers.
  • Transport by minibus.
  • Supervision by the English-speaking guide.
  • Overnight stays in 3  and 4* hotels and guesthouses (local standards subject to availability).
  • Half board (lunches from day 2 to day 8).
  • Entrances to monuments and activities mentioned in the program.
  • Boat trip in Matka canyon.
  • Day 3 hike from Janche to Galichnik.
  • Day 4 hike to Magaro peak.
  • Kayak day on Ohrid lake with lunch.
  • Boat trip on Prespa lake to discover Golem Grad and lunch at a local resident.
  • Wine tasting at the Popova Kula vineyard.
Number of participants 2 3 or 4 5 to 7 8 to 10 11 to 15 16 to 20
Price / person 1390€ 1090€ 950€ 850€ 750€ 660€

The price does not include

  • All additional expenses not mentioned in the program.
  • Dinners.
  • Optional activities.
  • Tips.
  • Insurance.
  • Round trip flight.
  • Single room: extra 120€ per person.
  • Anything not mentioned in "The price includes".

Accommodation

  • 3* and 4* hotels and guesthouses.
Next departures :

No scheduled departure, but you can contact me to book your dates.

Infos & Booking