Arrival at the Ohrid Airport and transfer to Ohrid. Orientation walk in the center of Ohrid, a UNESCO site, and a 10-minute transfer to the mountain village of Velestovo with breathtaking view on Lake Ohrid. Accommodation in a farmhouse and optional dinner prepared by the hosts.
We prepare for a mountain hiking to the village of Elshani. On the way to this mountain village, we first stop at the village of Gorno Koynsko, a place that will get you back a 100 years ago, abandoned old ruined houses with furniture and old tools still standing inside. The only people we might see here, are some elderly villagers. We finally get to Elshani village, where we spend the rest of the day in the kitchen together with the family hosts. They will share traditional recipes with us. Optional lunch, free time, overnight in the host family house in Elshani.
Today we have a steep path to reach the high peaks of the National park and mountain of Galichica. Hiking from Elshani to the mountain house in Galichica. As an option for those who want to avoid climbing the high mountain, we can hire an SUV to the beautiful and wild scenery of Galichica. Exploring this mountain with its extremely rich flora and fauna and spending the night in a mountain house, optional barbecue together with the hosts.
From the peak of the mountain, we walk down to the lowland of the Prespa region, famous for its apple fields. We reach the village of Koynsko, and from here, local people will take us on small boats to the uninhabited island Golem Grad (the Big Town) or the Snake Island on the Lake Prespa. Today the last point of our interest is the village of Braychino. We can spend the rest of the day on the sandy beach of Lake Prespa and get some bronze ten from Macedonia. Accommodation and optional homemade dinner at a host family in Braychino.
In the morning we start walking to Slivnitca village, than to Kurbinovo village, to admire the frescoes of one of the oldest and most important monasteries in Macedonia, St. George of Kurbinovo. We can visit one of the local sandy beaches for some swimming in Lake Prespa, and finally, we go to villa Dihovo to overnight. Optional dinner.
Pelister was declared a National Park in 1948. The mountain is Alpine and about 465 million years old. The highest peak in the park, Pelister is 2.601 meters high. One of the marks of the National Park is the five pine-fir called Molika, discovered in 1893 by the Austrian botanist August Grisebach. Today we use an off-road vehicle to get to Pelister lakes and observe the natural phenomenon called rocky rivers. The road leads through the villages of Trnovo and Magarevo to reach the glacier lakes calles the Big and the Small Pelister Lakes, or Pelister’s Eyes. Here you have an opportunity to tour the beautiful scenery and landscape, to breathe clean air and drink pure spring water. On the one side, you can see the Pelagonia Plane and Bitola, and on the other, Lake Prespa with Galichica Mountain in the background. We arrive back at Dihovo for a optional dinner.
This morning we head to Kuratica – a village on the outskirts of Ohrid. Local hosts will welcome us and serve different specialties from the traditional Macedonian cuisine, all that combined with homemade wine and a glass or two of the traditional alcoholic drink, rakia. The bread and some of the pies come directly from the old furnace, so you will be able to observe the whole backing process. Then the hosts will take us to a short donkey safari around the village, exploring the beautiful nature that surrounds the village. Later in the afternoon, we drive to Ohrid. After the check-in to the hotel, we start a short city tour. Ohrid Lake is Europe’s oldest lake and the town Ohrid, as one of the oldest human settlements in the world, it’s got a wealth of historic sites and religious monuments to discover. The town has once been home to 365 churches, earning it the nickname ‘the Macedonian Jerusalem’. We will explore some of the many ancient sites in the old part of the town, finishing at St. John of Kaneo church, which sits on a rocky outcrop overlooking the lake, one of the most popular in Macedonia. Back in the center by small boats and free evening.
After breakfast, transfer to Ohrid Airport.