Cultural landmarks worth visiting
If your path has brought you to Skopje, we recommend that you begin your tour from the Skopje Fortress, located on the highest hill called Gradishte. Built in the 6th century, the fortress has strategic meaning for this city for centuries. From here, there is a breathtaking view of the city, and the Old Bazaar is only few minutes away.
The Old Bazaar, which is one of the largest landmarks of the city, was built in the 12th century. The place rapidly grew into the largest trading area of the city, with approximately 30 mosques, numerous seraglios and inns. The most popular inns (lodges) are Kapan Han and Kurshumli Han, both built in the 15th century. Kurshumli Han played a great role for the traffic trade in the history, as a place where merchandisers from very distant places stayed overnight. Today however, it is a place for the organization of cultural events. In just a few minutes` walk, you can reach Daut Pashin Hammam – an old hamam (Turkish bath). The hammams were built as double cifte hammams with separate male and female rooms. Today, however, it serves as a National Gallery of Macedonia. The Stone Bridge is one of the most important landmarks of the city, built in the 6th century. It is located in the city center and connects the Macedonia Square and the Old Skopje Bazaar. Today, the bridge is considered a symbol of the city. Don’t forget to visit the Memorial House of Mother Teresa, which is the only museum in the world devoted to Mother Teresa. The house was built in her honor in 2009 as she was not only the most widely known citizen of Skopje but also a Nobel Peace Prize winner.
Clean air and natural beauty just a step away from the city
The mountain Vodno is situated just a step away from the center of the city. At its highest point, 1066 meters, there is the Millennium cross, which you can reach by an aerial tramway. The mountain Vodno offers extraordinary conditions for mountain and road biking. For the nature and water sports lovers, there lies the Canyon Matka within just 10 minutes’ drive by car. It represents one of the largest refugial centers and a large number of relict and endemic plants and animals can be found in this area. From the total number of 1000 types of plants, 20% are endemics or relics. And for an adrenaline experience, do not miss the chance to try kayaking and canoeing! Within the Canyon, there is the Cave Vrelo, which with its 230 metres depth is considered to be one of the deepest underwater caves in Europe and the world. Amazing, isn’t it?
1000 flavors and wonderful music
Skopje is a city with restaurants where you can try a little bit of everything, as well as coffee bars which offer you unforgettable fun until late at night. The food and the Bohemian life is an important aspect for every citizen of Skopje. Do not miss the chance to visit the popular Debar maalo which is situated only 5 minutes on foot from the center of the city, famous for its numerous taverns and the live music. It could be that you sit there for a lunch and talk for hours and have appetizers (“meze”) such as Macedonian salad, ajvar, makalo, pindjur, grilled cheese and mushrooms, gravche tavche, pastrmajlija, and you do not even order the main course…. When you add to this the unique Macedonian wines and the autonomous (autochthons) alcoholic beverages such as yellow brandy (rakija) and mastic (grape brandy), the experience is unforgettable. And last but not least, do not be surprised when in Skopje someone will tell you: “We’ll meet at Destan’s” or “We’ll meet at Palma”… citizens of Skopje are accustomed to meet in front of cult places! We are expecting you!
Phrases that might come handy when in Macedonia:
Здраво (Zdravo) – Hello
Како си? (Kako si?) – How are you?
Каде е…? (Kade e…?) – Where is…?
Довидување (Doviduvanje) – Goodbye
Благодарам (Blagodaram) – Thank you
Сметка, ве молам (Smetka, ve molam) – Cheque, please.