Ohrid

12 Instagrammable places in Ohrid

Anar Mammadov Anar Mammadov 06 January 2021
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The city of Ohrid in North Macedonia is located on the eastern shore of Lake Ohrid in the southwestern part of the republic. It has about 60,000 inhabitants, making it the seventh-largest city in the country. The city is rich in picturesque houses and monuments and the development of tourism. It is located southwest of the capital Skopje. The city has a huge history; it was even included in the UNESCO Cultural Heritage List in 1980. The natural beauty of the surrounding countryside and the turquoise waters of the lake have made Ohrid beaches an internationally popular summer destination. Ohrid has unique historical attractions and rich vegetation. How to get from Skopje to Ohrid any local guide will tell you, the most convenient way is to take the train at the station in Skopje to Kicevo and from there find a bus to Ohrid. Although direct flights by bus are possible, they are more tedious. The fastest way to get from Skopje to Ohrid is by taxi, but it is also not cheap. If you are a lover of lovely holiday photos, then on arrival, you should visit the following places from our list of "12 Instagrammable places of Ohrid".

1. Lake Ohrid

lake ohrid

Are you wondering where is Lake Ohrid? Well, on the border of North Macedonia and Albania is one of the oldest and deepest lakes in Europe. Lake Ohrid is exactly the place where you can admire the natural beauty that has amazed the whole world and thanks to which the popularity of these surroundings is growing. Lake Ohrid is often called one of the most beautiful places in the Balkans because of the picturesque places that surround it, the crystal clear water and the beautiful mountains. In this setting, travellers can relax, spend an active vacation, and even take informative historical excursions in many villages. And the most important thing is to return home with a dozen first-class pictures in the background of the reservoir. Also, Lake Ohrid offers you a variety of boat rides and boats; visit all its shores and enjoy the view from the centre of the lake.

2. The Amphitheatre Of Ohrid

amphitheatre of ohrid

The amphitheatre was founded in the late Hellenistic period, and its shape resembles a semicircle consisting of three parts: a staging area, an open space in front of the stage and rows of seats. Once the theatre was decorated with marble friezes, scenes from the life of the god Dionysus and other scenes from Greek mythology. Some of them can still be seen in the local museum. In accordance with the traditions of Hellenism, the theatre was built on a hill near the famous medieval fortress of Samuel. The location was chosen because of its excellent acoustics. The Romans rebuilt the theatre to meet the needs of large-scale gladiatorial combat, removing some of the lower seats and adding more seats at a higher level. In its heyday, the theatre could accommodate 5,000 people. Seating was determined by the social status of the audience, and the best seats were only for a select few. Only the lower part of the original theatre remains, and all the upper seats have been demolished as the modern city has long since invaded the Heritage Site, but some of the original exterior walls and entrances still stand. This is one of the most important historical treasures that the city can boast of.

3. Samuel's Fortress

samuels fortress

The Ohrid Fortress of Tsar Samuel, a symbol of the city, without which it is impossible to imagine its appearance and history, is one of the largest medieval fortifications in Macedonia. The fortress with its fortified towers occupies the entire Ohrid Hill, which rises 100 meters above the lake level. On all sides, with the exception of the southern one facing the lake, the city is protected by high walls and defensive towers about three kilometres long, which extend to the port of Ohrid. The height of the walls varies from 3 to 16 meters, depending on the terrain. Throughout history, the fortress was destroyed many times, rebuilt and modernized, so it bears the traces of almost all historical eras when Ohrid was ruled by the Romans, Byzantines, Slavs and Ottoman Turks. However, it is believed that a large part of the walls of the citadel and suburban areas, along with well-preserved towers, dates from the time of Emperor Samuel, at 976-1014 year and then with his successors up to 1018, when Ohrid was the capital of the first state of the Macedonian Slavs, which today the fortress known as the fortress "Samuel's Fortress". Ohrid's Instagrammable places should definitely include this place, as there is no better place for exciting, most liked Instagram photos to be found.

4. Plaoshnik

plaosnik

As you know, the city in Macedonia is considered as Jerusalem of Balkans, it is also full of historical values and attracts with its secrets. One such example is Plaoshnik. The historical centre of Plaoshnik is located at the southern foot of the western hill of Ohrid, on a flat plateau between the citadel of the fortress of Samuel and the Church of St. John the Theologian on the shore of Lake Ohrid. Plaoshnik is an exceptional archaeological complex with cultural layers of prehistoric times, antiquity and the Middle Ages. In the spacious atrium on the north side of the building, many marble columns with bases and capitals were found, and in the narthex and north aisle of the basilica, mosaic floors were preserved in several stages. There are stylized images of vines with grapes, leaves, flowers and quite realistic depictions of domestic and wild animals and birds.

5. Church of Saint Sophia

st sofia church

Ohrid's Instagrammable places will provide you with one of the largest medieval churches for which North Macedonia is famous — the Church of Saint Sophia. For a long time, it was the cathedral church of the Archdiocese of Ohrid, whose ecclesiastical authority covered territories up to the Danube River in the north, the Albanian coast in the west and the Thermaic Gulf in the east. The date of construction of this church is unknown because there are no inscriptions that help to reveal it. The original church had only one main dome. With the arrival of the Turks, the Church of Saint Sophia was transformed into a mosque. It was almost completely rebuilt to serve the Muslim religion. The frescoes were whitewashed, an internal staircase was built from the ornamented plates of the iconostasis, and a minaret was built over the north-western dome. But between 1950 and 1957, extensive restoration work was carried out. The frescoes were cleaned and preserved, and some reconstruction work was carried out. The frescoes in the church are among the highest achievements of medieval painting.

6. Old Town of Ohrid

old town of ohrid

If you are wondering "what to visit in Ohrid?", you should include one of the main attractions in your list — the Old Town, located on a hillside to the west of the city centre. It is here, in the Old Town, that you will find beautiful old Ottoman houses and narrow cobbled streets. The uphill climb from any point of the bazaar will soon take you to the streets of the Old Town, where crowds of tourists are eager to enjoy this atmosphere. Here you will see beautiful old and quaint houses and feel yourself in the Middle Ages. The Old Town is also home to some significant historical attractions. First, there are remnants of the fortifications of the old city, including several preserved gates. The best-preserved Upper Gate is located near the city market. Not far from the Upper Gate is the aforementioned Ancient Theater.

7. Galicica National Park

galicica national park

Well, for lovers of natural most liked Instagram photos, what to visit in Ohrid? On the border with Albania, between the Ohrid and Prespa lakes, lies the national park of Galicica, whose elevation reach more than 2 kilometres. The area is one of the country's three national parks and has a huge variety of flora and fauna. Galicica is a favourite destination for tourists and lovers of capturing beautiful views. Hiking in this area is a great chance to enjoy the beautiful surroundings, and you can take advantage of the many trails that are ideal for walking. Thus, you will soon reach the peak of Magaro to enjoy the view that extends from it to the neighbouring lakes. In addition, Galicica is a haven for many species of flora, some of which are now endangered, so there is something to see.

8. Church of Saints Clement and Panteleimon

monastery of saint naum

This Byzantine church, dedicated to Saint Clement and Panteleimon, is located in a very picturesque location, just a few hundred meters below the fortress of Samuel in the city of Ohrid, above Lake Ohrid.

The church served as a school, sometimes called a university or academy, but mostly known as the Ohrid Literary School, where St. Clement originally taught the Glagolitic alphabet to further spread Christianity. Who would have thought that the Instagrammable places of Ohrid, along with an excellent photoshoot, will give tourists a chance to get acquainted with the creation of one of the aspects of the Russian language? After all, the creation of the oldest Slavic alphabet is usually attributed to two monks, brothers named Cyril and Methodius. Soon they will develop the well-known Cyrillic alphabet, and this language will become the preferred language for teaching and rewriting in their schools.

9. Gradiste Beach

gradiste peninsula

Ohrid Macedonia beaches, which are always filled with tourists, will give you an unforgettable summer vacation. So if you have solved the question "how to get from Skopje to Ohrid?", then leaving without visiting the beach will be unforgivable. If you are looking for fun, cheerful energy and loud music, Gradiste is the best beach for this. Unlike the other beaches of Ohrid, this one has the opportunity to host a campsite where young adventurers spend all summer. Although the area is huge, it is almost always crowded due to its popularity. Most of the biggest parties are held in Gradiste, and in the summer almost every weekend there are DJs for parties. If you are ready to have fun all day and all night and not on a family vacation, this beach is what you need because Macedonia is always happy for lovers to spend their leisure time energetically.

10. The beach at the Monastery of St. Naum

saint naum stone pier

At the farthest point of the coastline of Lake Ohrid, there is a beach near the Monastery of St. Naum. Its surrounding nature is amazing, and the impressive view of the lake will leave you speechless. The beach shores are mostly located near vegetation, and this gives them an unusual appearance. St. Naum's beach definitely stands out among the Ohrid Macedonia beaches. If you decide to visit a monastery, an ordinary beach day will turn into a short historical trip. The whole area is worth exploring because discovering Ohrid's beaches and local history will make you sure to take a lot of pictures for the list of "Instagram Places of Ohrid".

11. National Museum of Ohrid "House of the Robev Family"

national museum of ohrid

The National Museum is a scientific, research and cultural institution in Ohrid. An important part of its activities is the depot, which stores about 800 icons from the era of the XII-XIX centuries. The most representative of them were moved to the Ohrid Icon Gallery. The current activities of the museum include the reconstruction and restoration of the fortress of Samuel, the Amphiteatre and the church in Plaoshnik, as well as the previously completed reconstruction of the Robev House. Today, the house houses an archaeological exhibit, an exhibition of Robev household items, works of art from the Ohrid carving school, and archaeological excavations of Ohrid and its surroundings. In 1996, the house of the Robev family was again placed under the protection of the Law on the Protection of Cultural Monuments of the Republic of Macedonia as a valuable cultural and historical heritage with distinctive features of the old Ohrid architecture of the 19th century.

12. The Promenade Of Ohrid

view of ohrid

The lake "boulevard" of this lovely city will complete our list today. This is exactly the place "what to visit in Ohrid?" is really necessary. A quiet evening on the waterfront will calm your thoughts, and local restaurants will warm you up with delicious dishes. The embankment mainly belongs to the old part of the city, very close to the main attractions. Walking along with it, you will find interesting objects, such as twelve boards with zodiac signs. The local custom is to make a wish by touching your sign and throwing a coin into Lake Ohrid. Well, it is best to save this moment in the most liked Instagram photo to consolidate the spiritual moment and help the wishes come true. Let Macedonia make your holiday versatile and beautiful!

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Anar Mammadov

Anar has been promoting himself to tourism for several years now. He believes that the key to success can be obtained by starting to learn something new. And the surest way, in his opinion,  is to travel, because nothing cheers us up as getting to know new people and their cultures. His interests also include cinematography and all its components, being another incentive to visit the places where his favourite films were shot. Working in hotels as a guest relations agent taught him not only the basic requirements of "conquering the horizons" but also the most critical lesson: "New places and experiences are better than old hobbies".

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