Skopje Region
Culture & History

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Our most recommended Skopje Region Culture & History

From Skopje: Vodno Mountain and Matka Canyon Tour

1. From Skopje: Vodno Mountain and Matka Canyon Tour

Depart Skopje and travel in air-conditioned comfort to Vodno Mountain. Ride the cable car up to Millennium Cross on arrival, and enjoy panoramic views back across Skopje from one of the biggest Christian crosses in the world. Take the cable car back down Vodno Mountain to continue to the mountain village of Gorno Nerezi by air-conditioned vehicle. Visit the small 12th-century Church of St. Panteleimon on arrival and marvel at the historical frescoes of Byzantine art inside. Next, make your way to the Matka Canyon to enjoy a tasty lunch in a nice restaurant by the lake. Take an optional boat trip to the Vrelo cave or go for a nature walk along the many marked trails. Fill your lungs with fresh country air before the return trip to Skopje, and get dropped off at the triumphal arch of the Porta Macedonia on arrival.

Day Tour from Sofia to Skopje, North Macedonia

2. Day Tour from Sofia to Skopje, North Macedonia

Skopje is the capital of Macedonia situated approximately a 4-hour's drive from Sofia. During this day tour to Skopje, you will have the chance to explore the city and its rich history and culture.  Your day tour will begin once you are picked up from your hotel or accommodations in Sofia then begin your 3-hour transfer to Skopje. Once in Skopje, you will begin your walking tour of the city beginning at Skopje Fortress where you can admire the wonderful view of the city. The next site you will visit is the Church of the Holy Savior, home to fantastic iconostasis. From there you will continue towards Sultan Murat Mosque and the Old Bazaar, where you can witness the remnants of the Ottoman Period and Skopje's history as one of the main trade centers in the Balkans.  After stopping for lunch at a typical Macedonian restaurant you will continue your walking tour crossing the Vadar River to start your exploration of a new part of the city. Here you will visit the new neo-classical square and continue to Mother Teresa memorial house. The walking part of your tour will end at the newly built triumphal arch Porta Macedonia. You will then journey back to Sofia and your tour will end once you are dropped off at your hotel or accommodations. 

From Skopje: Full-Day Kosovo Tour to Pristina and Prizren

3. From Skopje: Full-Day Kosovo Tour to Pristina and Prizren

This tour starts with a pick-up from your hotel in Skopje, traveling to Prishtina where your local guide will be waiting for you. First, visit Monastery Gracanica, and then arrive in Pristina where you will start a tour of Pristina. Your first stop in will be the Kosova National Library, an example of modern architectural design. Then make your way to the open air archaeological park with artifacts from the Neolithic period and Kosova Museum built by Austrians for the Turkish army in 1898, which has an extensive collection of archaeological and ethnological artifacts including the Neolithic Goddess on a Throne terracotta. Head to Çarshi Mosque, the oldest building in Pristina constructed in the 15th-century by the Turkish Sultan Bajazit. Afterwards, head to the Academy Building, a 19th-century Ottoman konak style private houses. Visit the Fatih Mosque or Imperial Mosque built in 1461 under the Turkish Sultan Mehmed II Fatih and the  Great Hammam – bath complex built in 1470 graced with 15 domes with small holes to let light stream in. Make your way to the Ethnographic Museum. The Emin Gjiku Complex is a extremely well-preserved building from 18th-century and it’s the only original building left in old bazaar area. The tour will finish with a visit of Gazimestan Tower. Contnue to Prizren for your walking tour of the city includes the attractive Ottoman old town, known for its gold and silver filigree craftsmen, the hammam, the Museum of Prizren League, the Helveti Tekke, Sinia Pasha Mosque and the Church of Our Lady of Ljevis. Prizren has the largest number of preserved Ottoman buildings in Kosovo, so simply wandering around the old cobbled streets admiring the town houses, mosques and tekkes is a delight. After a small break, return back to .

Skopje: Matka Canyon Sightseeing Tour

4. Skopje: Matka Canyon Sightseeing Tour

Discover the most beautiful landscape in the Skopje region on this scenic sightseeing hike and cruise of the Matka Canyon. Sail between vertical rocks, see ancient temples, medieval churches, and hilltop monasteries. Start at the 14th-century Monastery of Matka, dedicated to the Dormition of the Most Holy Mother of God, a religious festival celebrated on August 28 every year. Walk along the banks of the River Treska, famous for its kayak competitions, following the path past the Dam and manmade Lake Matka. Next, climb aboard a small boat to cruise along the 5-mile (8-kilometer) canyon, soaking up the surroundings and scent of flowers. Listen and look out for abundant birdlife, and keep your eyes open for wild boar and hare. On your return, stop opposite the Monastery of St. Andrew and climb up forested hills to the Monastery of St. Nikola. From the plateau, your efforts will be rewarded with breathtaking views. A hospitable church-keeper, who built the surrounding mountain huts, will welcome you inside the monastery for yet another perspective of this magical and mysterious land.

From Skopje: 6-Hour Private Mavrovo Tour

5. From Skopje: 6-Hour Private Mavrovo Tour

Start with a morning departure for Mavrovo. After arriving have a short informational session about Mavrovo and Mavrovo National Park. Visit the Cave Sharko and have a little walk and see ski passes and hotels around the area. After that, visit the village of Galicnik where Galicka Svadba (wedding) takes place. Galichnik is a mountain village in the Republic of Macedonia and along with Lazaropole, it is one of the two largest and oldest Mijak villages in the region. Galichnik has well-preserved traditional architecture, including an amphitheater in the village square, and is famous for its surrounding countryside and nature reserve. People from Galichnik and northwestern Macedonia appreciate the local yellow cheese (Kashkaval) that is produced in the region as well as the local salt brine white cheese "belo sirenje." After visiting Galicnik, drive along Mavrovo Lake and canyon of river Radika to the biggest monastery in Macedonia – Bigorski Monastery with its wood carved iconostasis from 18th century. After that, visit a natural place – Waterfall Duf. This tour then continues to visit the wonderful Monastery Rajcica. After that, have a traditional lunch in Mavrovo and return to Skopje.

Skopje: Private Half-Day Surrounding Beauties Tour

6. Skopje: Private Half-Day Surrounding Beauties Tour

This tour will start from your hotel or any location of your preference in Skopje. Your guide will take you by comfortable air-conditioned car or minivan to the middle of Mount Vodno and then by cable car system to the Millennium Cross and back to middle Vodno. Once back at middle Vodno, the tour will continue by car or minivan to the village of Gorno Nerezi to see the Church St. Pantelejmon. Witness the frescoes that are among the highest achievements of Byzantine art at St. Pantelejmon.  Then, you will continue to the Matka Canyon, one of the most popular outdoors destinations about 17 kilometers from Skopje. After the visit of Matka Canyon, transfer back to Skopje, to your hotel or any location of your preference in Skopje.

From Skopje: Private Full-Day Tour of Ohrid and Saint Naum

7. From Skopje: Private Full-Day Tour of Ohrid and Saint Naum

Starting from Skopje, the tour begins with a 2-hour drive to Ohrid. Visit the church of Saint Sophia and the Roman amphitheater. Explore the Icon Gallery, to discover some of the most famous and valuable icons in the world. Then see the beautiful frescoes at the 13th century Saint Clement’s Church of the Holy Mother of God Most Glorious. After this, continue to Tsar Samuel’s Fortress, named after the first tsar of the Macedonian Slavs. Then head to the Church of Saint Jovan at Kaneo, in a stunning location on the cliffs directly above the lake. From here, return to the town on foot or by boat. After a little break, visit the Bay of Bones Neolithic settlement to see how life was lived in 1,200 B.C. Continue along the picturesque lakeshore to the Monastery of Saint Naum, situated where the river Black Drin flows into Lake Ohrid. The springs at Saint Naum are part of the National Park Galicica. In the chapel of the church is the tomb of Saint Naum, with frescoes of his life and his miracles. Return to Skopje at the end of the tour.

Full-Day Tour of Ohrid from Skopje

8. Full-Day Tour of Ohrid from Skopje

This tour takes you to the city Ohrid from Skopje. The drive from Skopje to Ohrid takes about 2 hours. Upon arrival in Ohrid  you"ll start the a tour with a visit to the church of St. Sophia,  which dates back to the 11th century. The you'll go up to the Roman amphitheater, which dates back to the 3rd century B.C. Afterwards you will continue walking to the Icon Gallery, home to a range of some of the most famous and valuable icons in the world, right after the ones on Athos and in Russia. In the vicinity of the gallery is the Church of St. Clement’s, or the Church of the Holy Mother of God Most Glorious, which dates back to the 13th century and possesses some of the most beautiful and valuable frescoes from the 13th century not only in this country but in the whole of the Balkans. After that you will carry on walking to Tsar Samoil’s Fortress, named after the first tsar of the Macedonian Slavs, who, having conquered Byzantium, brought most of Macedonia under his rule. Then you will walk to Plaoshnik, where you will visit the newly built St. Clement’s Monastery Church. Dedicated to St. Clement - the patron of Ohrid - and St. Panteleimon, it stands beside the original site of St. Clement’s University, the first university of the Macedonian Slavs, founded in the 9th century A.D. Inside the church you can also see the tomb with St. Clement’s relics. Beside the church you can see the foundations of the 5th-century basilica with beautifully preserved mosaic floors and some swastikas also discovered on the floors. From here you will head towards the Church of St. Jovan at Kaneo, which was built at the end of the 13th century, and is one of the most frequently visited churches in Ohrid because of its beautiful location on the cliffs directly above the lake. After this you will go back to the town on foot. Another option is to return to the town by boat and at the same time to make a tour of the lak,e providing you with a great view of the town. After a short break you will return to Skopje.

Skopje to Sofia Transfer with Rila Monastery Tour

9. Skopje to Sofia Transfer with Rila Monastery Tour

Starting from your hotel in Skopje, travel to the Rila Monastery and enjoy at least 2 hours of free time to explore the most visited UNESCO site in Bulgaria. See the arcaded balconies, unique frescoes, gilded iconostasis, set in front of fabulous mountain views. Enter the main church and take photos of the narthex's gallery, admire the exhibits in the History Museum of the Monastery, try the tasty 'mekitsi' (Bulgarian doughnuts) with delicious buffalo yogurt, or take a short walk in the area. Break for coffee or lunch before continuing your trip to Sofia where you will be dropped off at your hotel or accommodation.

Best of Skopje City Tour

10. Best of Skopje City Tour

Your driver will pick you up from your hotel or any location in Skopje, with a comfortable A/C car/minivan and take you to the plateau where the Museum of Contemporary Art located. This offers a wonderful view of the central part of Skopje and here the story about the city begins. Afterwards, the Fortress Kale is visited. What follows is a visit to the Mustapha Pasha Mosque, and then the Church of the Holy Saviour. Another visit is the one to the Museum of Macedonia which consists of three parts: an icon gallery, an ethnological and historical departments. Then you continue you stroll through the Old Bazaar where two more caravansaries can be seen Turkish Baths – Chifte Hammam and Daut Pasha Hammam, dating back to the 15th century. The tour continues towards the modern part of the city on the right bank of the River Vardar. Before you cross the Stone Bridge, which is one of the oldest landmarks of Skopje, you can see the Holocaust Memorial Centre and the Museum of the Macedonian Struggle for Independence, IMRO and the Victims of Communism. On the other bank of the river is the main square Macedonia, with a lot of new statues and monuments. You will walk along the main street Macedonia which connects the square to the Old Railway Station. You can stay for a short visit at the Memorial House of Mother Teresa, with the tour ending in front of the Museum of the City of Skopje situated in the building of the Old Railway Station, which was partially destroyed by the earthquake in 1963. From Mount Vodno, you continue by cable-car system to the Millennium Cross and back to middle Vodno. Once back at middle Vodno you continue by the car/minivan to the village Gorno Nerezi, to see the church St. Pantelejmon. The tour continues with a visit to the canyon Matka, about 17 km from Skopje, continue to walk along the bank of the River Treska, which is famous for the competitions in kayaking that take place on it. You will follow the path that goes by the dam and the man-made lake Matka and reach the Monastery of St. Andrew.   After this, you will go on a boat ride along the canyon Matka (8km long) and enjoy the magnificent surroundings, as well as a visit to the cave Vrelo.

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What people are saying about Skopje Region

Overall rating

4.8 / 5

based on 82 reviews

Skojpe is an interesting capital city. I had a tour leader on Bulgarian side who is a history major and was just fascinating to learn from. Thank you Vasko!!!! and Lena, the guide in Skojpe was also an amazing educator and guide. The history of North Macedonia and Bulgaria is complex and the guides presented everything so well and answered my many questions. The drive from Sofia to Skojpe is beautiful, that was worth the trip alone. It was definitely and enjoyable day!

A perfect day. This is the perfect way to visit Skopje without worry about any of the planning. There was no problem or delay during the border crossing which surprised me. Skopje is very interesting place and it was a great balance of guided walking tour along with some free time to explore it on your own or to try the local cuisine.

Great trip with wonderful guides! I was picked on time by the Bulgarian tour guide. The drive was a bit long (4 hours in each direction) but the road was beautiful and we've learnt a lot from our guide. Skopje is awesome as well as the guide there Lanche. We've spent 4 hours but we could have stayed more, definitely.

Our guide was very knowledgeable and articulated the history of Skopje and North Macedonia so we could understand its importance. The van that took us to the site was clean and comfortable.

The tour was great, the guide passionately told a lot of interesting and helpful information.