The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia is a European country that, like its neighbors, has an interesting history, culture, and geography. Its cities and towns are pretty and are family friendly. In this article, we will talk about why it has to be your next stop.
With 2.1 million inhabitants, Macedonia forms a complex border zone between Kosovo, Albania, Greece, and Bulgaria. Thus, visiting the country will give you some pretty exciting and inciting options – from canyons, mountains, ancient ruins, lakes, bazaars, and a lot more. There is definitely a plethora of attractions that await you and your kids.
The country is among the landlock countries in Europe giving visitors a unique summer experience. Despite the absence of the sea and the ocean, Macedonian is surrounded by and home to towering mountain ranges with crystal-clear lakes. Because the country rarely makes it to the list of top tourist destinations in Europe, anyone who wanders there is treated with unspoiled landscape and tourist attractions.
We will focus our attention to the best things the family, especially the kids, can enjoy in this little European country.
Being the capital city of the republic, Skopje located in the center of the Balkan Peninsula, is a melting pot of cultures from the Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman, and Yugoslavian empires. Visiting this lovely city with the kids would be a busy and exciting tour.
The eclectic tourist attractions include the famous Old Bazaar built in Ottoman architectural style, Matka Canyon that offers visitors a fascinating view of the lake, and Vodno with hiking trails that will lead you to churches, waterfalls, and more. Hailing a cable car to the top of Vodno will let you reach the Millennium Cross with stunning and breathtaking views of the city. Museum-lovers will also appreciate the Museum of Macedonian Struggle and the Holocaust Memorial Center. For anyone who visits the city, a snapshot at The Stone Bridge will also be ideal.
Aside from the usual tourist spots such as monasteries, museums, and zoos, Bitola is also home to Pelister National Park, which is one of the best places to visit in Macedonia with kids. This natural park not only offers jaw-dropping sceneries, but also fresh air, forests, trees, and of course, an unforgettable experience.
When strolling around Bitola, make sure that you don’t miss visiting Saat Kula or the city’s Clock Tower. Located in a garden, there is nothing the kids will not like about this towering landmark. All these and more the kids will love in Bitola.
Since there are no ocean beaches in Macedonia, an excellent alternative to cool the summer heat is by spending time in Ohrid, a small resort city situated in the shores of Lake Ohrid. A day in the city would include hopping on a boat, sailing to enjoy the sceneries, or going fishing.
Another day can also be spent visiting the old town, medieval churches, ruins, and the Samuel’s Fortress located at the top of the hill. You can also take a photograph of St. Jovan of Kaneo Monastery or simply take a boat to enjoy the view of the city from the lake.Sunset from that viewpoint will be incredible.
4. Lake Prespa
The Great and Small lakes of Prespa, shared by Macedonia with Greece and Albania, are two lakes where exciting adventures await you. This trans-boundary park has islands, both inhabited and not, that attracted travelers for years. You can travel to the eastern part the lake to enjoy the beautiful sandy beaches.
Kids will also love swimming in the yellow-green and blue water of the lakes in August when the temperature is at its highest. After taking a dip, a good walk on the trekking trails will not only lead you to amazing sceneries, but also to abandoned villages. If you still have time to spare, don’t miss the various water-based activities, such as canoeing and kayaking, that the lake resorts offers.
Just like the city of Ohrid, Struga is a popular lake town located on the shores of Lake Ohrid, offering travelers a variety of activities. This place is known for Aquarius Beach, where the family can enjoy a sumptuous Macedonian meal.
When everyone is already full and is ready to take in another attraction, you can take the family to the Dr. Nikola Nezlobinski Museum. It is a must-visit museum with an interesting collection of natural wildlife, including extinct animals you wouldn’t see anywhere else.
6. The Ancient Ruins of Stobi
Located just south of the modern Macedonian city of Veles in the Vardar Region, the ancient city of Stobi is a great place to take the kids to learn about history. It is considered to be one of the most popular archaeological sites in Macedonia.
Thus, offering visitors a great deal of historical relics and facts. Take the family to a trip to the past by exploring the excavated sites, including the Northern Basilica, Synagogue, and Central Basilica, and more.
The presence of Aqua Park Salida and Treskavec Monastery does not shake up Markovi Kuli’s spot as the most famous attraction in the Prilep.
The towers, which were named after a Serbian medieval prince, are located at the top of the hill, giving anyone a stunning view of the mountain ranges and the town below. Nature-lovers will love the great view along the road and at the top of the hill, too.
Have you ever seen a church ruin submerged in a lake? If you haven’t yet, then visiting Mavrovo is a must. This place is where you can find the ruins of the St Nicholas Church that is partially submerged and has interestingly appeared out of the lake due to the droughts.
Aside from this, Mavrovo National Park, which is famous among hikers and bikers who want to experience nature, is a natural wonder you wouldn’t want to skip.
This article is part of our popular series, Place To Go With Kids!