Day-1, Arrival in Skopje (20 km) (D)
Pick up from the airport. Accommodation in a hotel in Skopje. Orientation walk and time on your leisure. Welcoming dinner in a national restaurant. Overnight.
Day-2, Skopje – Old city – Marko monastery – Skopje (60 km) (B, L)
Breakfast. We will take a city tour through the Old city and there we will visit the church Holy Savior and the Mustafa pasha’s mosque. Lunch in the restaurant. After that we will continue our trip for the settlement Nerezi and we will visit the church St. Pantaleimon, built and painted in 1164 AD. Among the best achievements is the fresco Lamentation of Christ, considered by the art historians as a masterpiece associated with the renaissance at a much earlier stage than the blossoming of the Italian Renaissance with Giotto. For the end of the day, we will visit Marko’s monastery built in the 14 century. We will come back in Skopje for dinner at a local restaurant. Overnight.
Day-3, Skopje – Kumanovo – Ginovci – Psacha – Kriva Palanka ( 120 km) (B, L, D)
Breakfast at the hotel. We will check out from the hotel and drive for the village Staro Nagorichane (55 km), near Kumanovo. There, we will visit a medieval church built in 1313. The church has preserved the original stone iconostasis and it is the only example in the country of iconography by using the fresco technique. We will go than in the beautiful Ginovci (38 km) restaurant for lunch. Next sightseeing will be the monastery St Nikola in Psaca (7 km) built at 1354. There you could sее fresco of the medieval Serbian rulers Uros and Volkasin. The last monastery for today will be St Joakim Osogovski (20 km, designed by the famous Macedonian architect – Andrej Damjanov. On an altitude of 825m, above sea level and surrounded by the picturesque landscape of the oak forest, St Joakhim Osogovski Monastery is becoming one of the most interesting tourist attractions in the country. Accommodation in the monastery an. Dinner. Overnight.
Day-4, Kriva Palanka – Probistip – Strumica (190 km) (B, L, D)
Breakfast at the hotel. After that we will continue our trip for Probistip, where we will visit the monastery St Gavril Lesnovski (80 km). This Monastery is built for the first time in XI century and after that reconstructed in XIV century. The Iconostasis is from 1811-1814 made by Petre Filipovski – Garkata. After that we will drive for Strumica (100 km) and have lunch. After that we will visit the monastery St Leonthius (5 km) in Vodocha. Near this church in 1014, 14.000 soldiers from the army of Tsar’s Samuil, were blinded by the Byzantine Tsar Vasilij II. Next sightseeing is the monastery Holy mother Merciful in Veljusa (5 km), built in 1080. Here you will see a unique fresco of Jesus Christ as a 12 years old boy. The Monastery kept its original architecture and part of the marble iconostasis and floor. Dinner in a restaurant. Overnight in the hotel.
Day-5, Strumica – Prilep (175 km) (B, L, D)
Breakfast at the hotel. We will visit the church Sts 15 Tiberiopolis Holy Martyrs”, the protectors of the city of Strumica. After that we will continue our trip for Prilep (145 km). Lunch in a national restaurant. After that we will visit the monastery St Archangel Michail from the XIV century with a fresco of King Marko. The last sightseeing will be the monastery Treskavec (15 km), from where we will admire the view of the city of Prilep, and also enjoy in the beautiful frescoes. Back for Prilep (15 km) and accommodation in the hotel. Dinner. Overnight.
Day 6, Prilep – Bitola – Kurbinovo – Ohrid (135 km) (B, L,D)
Breakfast. We will continue our trip for Bitola, where we will see the church dedicated to the St Demetrius (45 km). We will have lunch in Bitola. After that we will visit the monastery in Kurbinovo(40 km) built in 1191 in the time of the Byzantine emperor Isak II Angel. You will have a chance to see many frescoes. We will continue our way for Ohrid (50 km) and we will accommodate in a hotel. Dinner in a restaurant. Overnight.
Day 7, Ohrid (55 km) (B, L,D)
Breakfast at the hotel. Ohrid is a city of UNESCO. In medieval times 365 churches existed in Ohrid, one for every day in the year. First we will visit the churches in the old part. We will visit the church The Holy Mother of God Peribleptos, designed in 1295 by the Byzantian commander Progon Zgur. Their dramatic expressiveness was the basis of the new trend in Byzantine art from this epoch, called “The Renaissance of the Paleologues.” After that we will visit the church St Pantaleimon in Plaosnik, where the grave of St. Clement Ohridski (died 916)is located. He invented the Cyrillic alphabet in this place. The next church is St John the Theologian in the Kaneo setllemenet. This church is almost on all cover pages of tourist guidebooks about Macedonia. Lunch in the restaurant. We will continue with a visit of the oldest church in Macedonia St Sofia built between 1037 and 1056. The cathedral was the seat of the Ohrid Archbishopric for several centuries and its ecclesiastical authority covered a vast territory, from the Danube to the Albanian coast and the Bay of Thessalonica. In the afternoon we will drive for the settlement St Naum (27 km), where we will visit the monastery St Naum and the grave of St Naum (died 910). We will come back in Ohrid (27 km). Dinner in a restaurant. Overnight in the hotel.
Day-8. Ohrid – Kalista – Jovan Bigorski – Tetovo – Matka – Skopje (240 km) (B, L, D)
Breakfast at the hotel. First we will visit the cave church – Kalista (20 km). One of the churches devoted to the Nativity of Holy Mother of God is a cave church and it is a symbol of the monastery, as well as the particular lifestyle known as asceticism and characterised by abstinence of physical pleasures and time spent in fasting and pursuing spiritual goals. The cave church is built in the 14th century and is authentic and preserved with no restoration. After that we will continue our trip for the monastery St John Bigorski (80 km). The story of this monastery starts with the oldest miraculous icon with healing power, originating from the 11th century, dedicated to the name of St John the Baptist. The first church was built in 1020 by the monk John. One of its most valuable treasures is the iconostasis, made from 1830 to 1835. Lunch in a restaurant in Mavrovo (35 km). Next sightseeing will be the Colourful Mosque in Tetovo (50 km), one of the rare examples of painted mosques in the World. Our last monastery will be St Andrew from the end of the XIV century in the Matka canyon (35 km). After visiting this monastery we will drive for Skopje (20 km). Accommodation in a hotel. Farewell dinner in a national restaurant. Overnight in the hotel.
Day-9. Skopje (B)
Breakfast at the hotel. Free time. Driving to the Skopje International Airport, about 40 minutes from the hotel.
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