Creating the ultimate Macedonian experience – Essences and emotions
|Day 1||Skopje||7 days||by agreement|
|Day 7||South-East Macedonia|
Sightseeing of Skopje: Old and new part of the town, Old Stone bridge, the church of Holy Salvation with marvelous wood-carved iconostasis, Mustfa Pasha mosque, Skopje Fortress Kale , Mother’s Teresa house.
The church of Holy Salvation was built in the beginning of the 17th or 18th century, on the foundation of some older church. On the south side, the discovered a fresco- painting of the old church which originates from 16th century. In contrast to the exterior of the church, immediately after entering the church, the iconostases present you with a breath-takingly beautiful sight. The master piece of the famous Mijaks craftsmen Petre Filipovski and Makarie Frckovski represents a great achievement in carving, not only within the borders of Macedonia. The screen consists of many scenes from the Bible, geometrical ornaments and details of flora and fauna.
Visit of the National Park of Mavrovo – famous ski center and Mavrovo lake, Galicnik – typical Macedonian village with tradition. Drive near Radika river. Visit the church and monastery of St. John Bigorski.
It is the greatest cultural monument in the region. The monastery was built in 1020 A.D. The wood-carved walnut tree iconostasis was made in the period from 1830 to 1840 and it is of a unique value in Europe made by the same craftsmen who made iconostasis in the church of Holy Salvation in Skopje – Petre Filipovski and Makarie Frckovski. Contrary to the church canons, the master of wood-carving carved their own faces in the iconostasis. The beauty of the Monastery complex is in the old buildings with a dining room, all built in the 18-th century.
Sightseeing of the old part of the town known by typical architecture, Samuil fortress, the church of Sv. Sofija, the church of Sv. Jovan Kaneo, Plaosnik, Biljana’s springs… Visit of monastery Sv. Naum and the church Sv. Zaum.
The church of St. Sofia is one of the largest medieval churches on this territory. For a long time it was the cathedral church (“Great Church”) of the Ohrid Archiepiscopate whose ecclesiastical authority covered the territories up to the river Danube to the north, the Albanian coast to the west, and the Bay of Thessalonica to the east. The church was probably used as a cathedral way back in the past, in the period of the Czar Samuel who, in the late X century, moved his throne from Prespa to Ohrid. The date of the construction of that church is uncertain because there are no inscriptions that help reveal it. It is also mentioned that today’s church was either built or restored during the period of the Archbishop Leo who was on the throne of the Church in the period between 1035-1056.
Located on the southwestern side of the hill surmounting Lake Ohrid is the church dedicated to Sv. Jovan Kaneo (St. John the Theologian – Kaneo). It is not certain when it was built and fresco painted. However, a document about the church property suggests that it was built before 1447. The architecture of the church is important when studying the medieval monuments of culture.
The monastery of St. Naum is located on the southeast side of Lake Ohrid, in the immediate vicinity of the Macedonian-Albanian border. Its building is linked to the name of St. Naum, the closest associate of St. Clement of Ohrid. Records about the life and work of St. Naum can be found in three literature works dedicated to his life. Towards the end of his life St. Naum of Ohrid built the monastery St. Archangel where he was buried in 910. The church of Naum was similar to the monastery of Clement, St. Pantheleimon, and was built in a trefoil shape.
Sightseeing of Struga – town of poetry and Brothers Miladinovci birth place. Visit of the Church Sv. Bogorodica in Kalista. Drive to Ohrid and visit of church Sv. Erazmo near the road.
Sv. Bogorodica – Kalista is little church on the west coast of Ohrid lake with fresco-painting form 15th -16th century.
The cave church of Sv. Erazmo – There are numerous cave churches in the vicinity of Ohrid. Research has shown that a cave located about 2 km from Ohrid (on the right side of the Struga – Ohrid motorway) was the first to be converted into a monk cell or a church. In the course of its long history this cave church was reconstructed many times, but the frescoes painted on the rock have been preserved to the present day. On the basis of the portraits it is estimated that they originate from the first decades of the XIII century. The name of the fresco painter who decorated the church is unknown. The assumption is that the church and the dormitories were used either by monks or by a small monastic fraternity. The church itself is dedicated to St. Erasmo whose name is linked to the christianization of the local population in the III century.
Drive along the summer resort of Oteshevo and Mt. Galichica (one of the three National Parks in Macedonia) from where there is a magnificient view of both lakes (Ohrid Lake and Prespa Lake).Visiting the church of St. Gjorgji in Kurbinovo. The sightseeing of Bitola and the Pre-christian city of Heraklea. Walking in National Park of Pelister.
The Capital of the North Macedonian Region of Lynkestidos, situated in the immediate vicinity of present-day Bitola . Heraclea was one of the most important towns in Ancient Macedonia. Its foundation (mid 4-th century B.C.) is related to Philip II. The urban image of Heraclea and its development is in the Hellenic, Roman and Early Christian periods. The influence of Rome , Syria and Alexandria are also felt. In addition to the numerous and varied remains which have been discovered so far, today Heraclea is also renowned for its floor mosaics. These mosaics date back from the 4-th century. The motifs on the mosaics are different, vine peacocks, fountain with gushing water, stags, hinds and birds drinking fro the spring of life. They all convey the Christian message of inviting the faithful to follow the teachings of Christ, represented symbolically by hunting scenes or representations of the Christian paradise.
Sightseeing of Krusevo – City – museum, a place for an outin, air-spa, ski-center… It is famous of its archaic architecture. The “Krusevo House” is chapter in an architecture studies book. Visit of Monastery “Treskavec” on the road to Prilep. Sightseeing of Prilep.
About ten kilometers from Prilep, in the arms of the massive rocks of Zlatovrv, there is the church Mother of God’s Ascending, which with the dormitory shelters and the dining room of the Treskavec Monastery, provide God’s energy and spiritual tranquility to this wonderful picturesque area. The highland offers a clear view of all Pelagonija Plane, the mountains Pelister, Babuna and Kajmakcalan.
Treskavec Monastery is believed to have been built in the 13th Century, during the rule of the Byzantine emperors Andronic 2nd and Mihailo 3rd who, according to the writings on the frescoes at the entrance gate, were the first donors to this monastery. Its complex and diversified architecture points to the fact that the monastery was subjected to tearing down. Most probably, the monastery was renovated in the 14th Century, during the time of the Serb king Milutin. The church has one arc in its basis with a naos of a high dome and separated with pilastres on a few sides. On the outside, the altar apse is three sided on the east. Under the deep level of plaster walls of the northern paraclis, there are frescoes dating form the 14th Century. The the porch is also from this century with its two dome towers, placed on the west part of the church. Treskavec Monastery has other valuable artifacts. Most remarkable among them are the ones made in shallow wood carving: the two wing doors and the Emperor’s Gate from the 16th Century, then the Kosmitos Cross from the 17th Century. It is worth mentioning the choir seats, the numerous holiday icons and the icons of the Apostles from the 17th and 18th century.
Sightseeing of Kavadarci and Negotino (vineyards), Dojran Lake, Smolari Falls, Monastiry Sv. Leontij (Vodoca) from 1018 y. and Monastery in Veljusa.
Veljusa – Monastery of the Most Holy Theotokos Eleusa
About the church construction and its founder, Bishop Manuel, as well as about the order of the spiritual life and generally about the daily catholic life of the first monks, we find original historical data also in the Rule (Typikon) written personally by him between 1085 and 1106. This is one of the oldest known typikons in the history of Orthodox monasticism, which is a witness to the thousand years old monastic tradition in Macedonia. It was built in 1080, and from then also date the narthex and the southern chapel, with the latter functioning as a deacon icon. In the rather damaged fresco painting, frescoes of two periods of origin can be distinguished.