Posted by: travel.drops | May 16, 2018

Zucchero, Sweet Ingredient for a Great Vacation

Italian music mega-star Zucchero is coming to Macedonia for the first time, where he will perform on one of the most beautiful open Mediterranean stages, Antique Theatre in Ohrid on 25th July 2018.

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Credited as the “father of the Italian blues,” Zucchero, who can boast 50 million records sold worldwide, is going to kick off his ‘Wanted 2018’ world tour and remind us on his greatest hits including “Senza Una Donna“, “Diamante“, “Baila Morena”, “Diavolo in me”…

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Zucchero (whose real name is Adelmo Fornaciari) was born in Roncocesi, a small village nearby Reggio Emilia (city in the Emilia-Romagna region), from parents who worked as farmers, grew up surrounded by nature and animals, so, after high school, chose veterinary medicine at the university of Bologna. As he was still studying at university, he formed several bands and started playing around various venues. He found a record label offering him a contract, under which he would have had to sing in the tradition of Italy’s bel canto. That didn’t reflect his artistic aspirations, so, upon dropping out of university, he decided to follow his fascination towards soul and blues.  So, he broke into the  blues, rhythm and blues, soul – musical expressions of the African-Americans – reinventing those in a fresh “Mediterranean” blend.

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Posted by: travel.drops | May 4, 2018

The history hidden in the walls

Present in every travel guide book about Ohrid,  Samuil’s Fortress is now a silent witness of turbulent times from its past. It’s a first noticable construction positioned on the top of the hill, while approaching  the city. It seems as it’s been there since the beginning of time, which is not far from the truth. Some of the tourists call it a fort , some call it a castle. Having in mind a slight difference between these type of constructions, it is definitely a fortress although in some aspects could be considered a castle as well.

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Built presumably during the Phillip II of Macedon rule in the IV century B.C. when the town was called Lihnidos, it was certainly a witness of life quite different from the one we know today.  The mysterious, last royal golden mask which dates back from 5 century B.C. was discovered in 2002 during excavations around the site of the Samoil Fortress, along with several other golden items, such as gloves and necklace. Actually, the total number of the masks found so far is five. The practice of placing funeral masks on the deceased’s face or golden foliage covering the eyes and mouth, were particularly common in ancient Macedonia of the sixth and fifth centuries BC.

Samuilova 2

You might ask why the fortress built by Philip is called Samuil’s ? Well, simply because of the limited, collective memory span and the fact that many different civilizations have changed throughout its existence while Ohrid was ruled by the Romans, Byzantines, Slavs and Ottoman Turks.

Samuil was the one who made some major restoration works on the ramparts and the citadel. Besides,  he moved the seat of his medieval empire, making Ohrid a capital of the first state of the Macedonian Slavs. Related to Samuil and the fortress is the legend of the terrible defeat of his soldiers, cruelly blinded by the Byzantines.

After the arrival of the Ottomans, the christian population remained within the city walls, while newcomers settled in the lower area of the town and that situation have lasted for several centuries, untill 1912. Maybe, that’s the reason why the residents of this historical part are considered strange personalities.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by: travel.drops | April 3, 2018

Lost in the city of lights

Nestled amidst the high mountains whose peaks are often covered by the snow despite the arrival of the summer, Ohrid’s lake area astonishing appearance will capture your eye even before the landing on the small international airport on just several miles away from the town itself.

Fog_over_Ohrid_Lake,Охридско_езеро

That body of water which looks as it has broken away from close by Adriatic Sea,  surely is the oldest European lake and among the oldest worldwide. The blue eyed troll awakened by the presence of men is the guardian of the secrets of the remote past which witness it was over a million years ago when it was created during the tectonic shifts.

It may not get you stricken and as some places showing the furious and extreme force of the nature would, but instead, here you will experience the mystical power of nature’s elements, mostly when the lake evaporates as it was breathing. No wonder it has developed into an important spiritual center throughout the centuries. Here, you will feel the calmness and the harmony among them, and all you have to do is pick your own little spot and just be you without no sense of time.

Pristine air and nature aren’t the only things to rely on,  there’s a variety of the cultural events in the summer you don’t wanna miss. 

Europe_Macedonia_008-4-1000x335Shades of blue, as emerald here where Marshall Tito, former Yugoslav president has built one of his villas right above those cliffs.

 

Posted by: travel.drops | September 15, 2012

Let’s go rural

We’re presenting you The Top 3 Eco Resorts in Macedonia :

Vevčani is at the foot of the Jablanica Mountain, and 14 kilometres away from the Ohrid Lake and the town of Struga.It is situated from 800 – 950 metres above sea level and has over 2,500 inhabitants and its own local self-government.

The famous Vevčani springs are some of the most famous springs to be found in Macedonia. The springs are located on the eastern slope of the Jablanica mountain range which run through the village of Vevčani at an approximately sea level altitude at over 900 metres.

The carnival of Vevcani

The Vevcani Carnival, which claims a 14 century long legacy, is held every year from 13 to 14 January. Recognized by the Federation of European Carnival Cities (FECC), the carnival attracts thousands of both domestic and international visitors to see the people of Vevcani disguised in elaborate masks expressing humor and sarcasm. Some of the most common costumes include devils, demons and other mythical characters.

Elshani – the best possible view over the lake for those who enjoy nature sounds only. Located on the western slopes of the Galichitsa National Park  the village of Elshani ( 900 metres above sea level) 10 km south of Ohrid and 1.5 km driving distance from the Ohrid Lake. Elshani  has 590 inhabitants living in the village all year around, though, in the summer, there are approximately 400 additional temporary inhabitants staying in their holiday  homes.
Nestled amidst large gardens, surrounded by mountain trees, this village is a great place to enjoy hiking in the mountains, being a perfect starting point for a number of hiking trails for all ages and skill levels. The winding, steep streets of the village also provide for an unforgettable scenery.
You can also take part in guided excursions to the National Park, donkey safaris and cooking classes.

Brajcino  is a village in the Resen Municipality in Macedonia . It is situated 6 kilometres (3.7 mi) from Lake Prespa at the foot of Baba Mountain. The village is located a few miles from Greece. Due to its nature and old architecture, Brajcino has recently drawn many domestic and foreign tourists. The village has a mountain nature trail leading from the village to the glacial lake at top of The Baba Mountain. The trail links Prespa Lake  with Pelister National Park and provides good views of the mountains.

Posted by: travel.drops | June 20, 2010

Ohrid History

The shores of Lake Ohrid have been inhabited since prehistoric times. Archaeological findings speak of settlements from the Neolithic period 6000 years B.C. According to historical sources, the earliest known inhabitants of the Lake Ohrid region were the tribes known as Bryges (Briges) and Enhelians(eel people), the latter of which dominated for a long time. According to Herodotus and Apollodorus, they were not Illyrians, but their closest neighbors. Certain posterior documents note that the Desaretes inhabited the town of Lychinidos, as the capital of Desaretia, and its surrounding area. As a powerful settlement, whose name is unknown today, they lived there for several centuries in the 1st millennium B.C., in the vicinity of today’s international airport, a few kilometers to the north of Ohrid.

The first missionary to come to Lychinidos was Erasmus of Antioch. Records say that, in the 5th century, this town was the seat of the bishops of Lycnidos. In the 6th century, when Lychidos was part of the Byzantine Empire, the Slavs began crossing the Danube and penetrated into the Balkan Peninsula. A Slavic tribe called Brsjan settled in the region of Lychnidos. The name Ohrid was first mentioned in a protocol issued by the Assembly of Constantinople in 879.  As the old town of Ohrid stands on the crest of a hill, presumably the name Ohrid was derived from the Slavonic words – “vo hrid” – meaning “on a hill.“

Clement and Naum, the two best-known disciples of the missionary brothers Cyril and Methodius, came to Ohrid after their mission in Moravia. Clement was the first one to come in 886 and Naum joined him 14 years later, in 900.

Clement spent 30 years among the Macedonian Slavs. The first Ohrid literary school was founded in his monastery church of St. Pantelejmon in Ohrid in 893. The 3,500 pupils who came out of this school spread the Slavonic script, culture, and art.

After Clement’s death in 916, the Ohrid literary school continued to be a source of manuscripts invaluable for Slavonic studies. This school began its work on Macedonian soil in the 9th century and was a loyal adherent to the Glagolithic alphabet.

Samuel’s Empire, which was the first state of the Macedonians Slavs, originated in the Ohrid region. In 1014 Byzantine Emperor Basil II defeated Samuel’s army, captured and blinded 14,000 of his soldiers, ruined the town, and banished its population.

In the 15th century, during the Turkish rule in Ohrid, many of the Christian churches were converted into mosques.

The exact date of Ohrid’s fall under the Turkish rule cannot be determined accurately. However, an inscription in the St. Ilija Church (in the village of Elesani in the Ohrid region), dating back to 1408, is considered to be an apparent evidence of the Turks’ presence.  Yet another source implies that Ohrid fell under the Turks in 1395 and was ruled by Canarli Hairudin Pasha, who later became a vizier, the position of the supreme military commander, second in power after the sultan.

The only medieval feudal institution that continued its existence in the time of the Turkish rule was the Ohrid Archiepiscopate. During this period, the Archiepiscopate maintained its full internal autonomy, keeping its previous rights and privileges. With the support of the Turkish authorities, the Ohrid Archiepiscopate even managed to expand its jurisdiction to new territories.

In the first decades of the 15th century the jurisdiction of the Ohrid Archiepiscopate covered the eparchies of Sofia and Vidin. By the end of the 16th century the jurisdiction of the Archbishopric of Ohrid over went as far as the Serbian Church Patriarchy of Pec and the Orthodox communities in Dalmatia and Venice in mainland Italy.

According to a document, in the 17th century there were 300 churches, 33 of which were active, but at the beginning of the 19th century only three town churches were left in service. In the second half of the 17th century the Constantinople Patriarchate did not conceal its aspirations towards the Ohrid Archiepiscopate and the Phanariots (pro-Greek inclined party).

More intense church building in Ohrid and its surroundings occurred towards the end of the 18th century and particularly during the 19th century. The architecture also flourished in this period and some of the most beautiful buildings found in Ohrid were built in that time (the house of the Robev Brothers, which now hosts the National Museum, the house of the Kanevce family, and the house of Urania, which now functions as the Ethnological Department of the National Museum.

During World War II Ohrid was occupied by Bulgaria. In the postwar period, Ohrid developed into an important tourist centre. Modern hotels, car camping sites, and bed&breakfast facilities were built in order to accommodate the numerous tourists who came to discover the beauties of Ohrid.

In the 1975-88 period Ohrid was a genuine Mecca for tourists, not only in Macedonia, but also in the Balkans. In 1980 both the town and the lake were included on the list of UNESCO and protected as an exceptional cultural heritage site and natural beauty.

Don’t miss the chance to visit , read the entire article :

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/travel/2010-places-to-go.html#/20/

Posted by: travel.drops | October 2, 2009

Kokino

Skopje, October 1 (MIA) – Kokino is not only an observatory, it is also a holy place and culture of people that lived in the Bronze Age, from the 18th till 20th century BC, in the same period as Minoans in Crete and Hittites in Anatolia. This is claimed by Gjorge Cenev, a supervisor of excavations in northeastern Macedonia.

Intensive excavations in the past couple of months have revealed a network of 10 shrines on mountain tops in the Kumanovo and Kratovo region, located nearby Pcinja and Kriva Reka rivers and artifacts show that residents had had an organised life 40 centuries ago in the area. Cenev told a press conference that the discovery had an enormous importance in argumentation of time, space of their life and culture.

– Through archaeological and astronomic analyses of Kokino and the characteristic of these shrines, which are compared with experiences of the global science, it can be said that the culture which founded Kokino existed in the 18th, 19th and 20th century BC. As of today we can freely talk about a Kokino culture, the main feature of these people. There are no other similar artifacts in the Balkan Peninsula, said Cenev.

The discovery, he added, is significant in an attempt to establish a continuity of the arguments for civilisation development in Macedonia and in the Balkans.

Characteristics of kingdom have been identified in the Kokino culture, because the cult of the god of sun and storm were worshiped as well as other deities.

The Kokino observatory itself, which served as a calendar to measure time, is amongst the main achievements of the intellectual and spiritual capacities of the culture. In the vicinity, there are at least ten archaeological sites from the Bronze Age with figurines of people and animals. Cenev expressed hopes that the culture had fostered an alphabet and if that is discobred then Kokino will meet the criteria to be considered an ancient civilisation, the oldest one in the Balkans.

As of this year, Kokino is included in UNESCO’s temporary list as an archaeological and astronomic site. In order to be included in the UN list of world cultural heritage, a complex documentation is needed with the participation of scientists from various fields.

Posted by: travel.drops | June 13, 2009

Watch the latest video – Ohrid City of Light

Promotion of clip “Ohrid-City of Light”, part of “Macedonia Timeless” project.

Skopje, July 2 (MIA)- Marketing agency “New Moment” promoted Thursday clip “Ohrid-City of Light” as part of project “Macedonia Timeless”, to be presented as of today at CNN within Macedonia’s tourism promotion.

“Ohrid-City of Light” is a video-story inspired by Ohrid’s old name Lychnidos i.e. city of light. Sixty seconds present the traits of the Balkan cradle of culture, art and religion, churches and monasteries, good food and pearls, told through the visual play of light and shadows.

Dusan Drakalski is the director, Slobodan Trnik-Trn is the cinematographer, Gjorgji Klincarov is the photographer, whereas Filip Dimitrov and Goran Sazdanovski are the producers. The clip was shot at famous Ohrid locations – Plaosnik, village Trpejca, St.Naum, St.Perivlepta, old town and Robevci House etc.

The clip also involves actors Meto Jovanovski and Nikolina Kujaca, as well as singer Karolina Goceva. There are two versions – one with the music by Duke Bojadziev and the other with the music by band “Foltin”.

The campaign for Macedonia’s promotion includes the main clip “Macedonia Timeless” by Milco Mancevski, followed by five videos promoting the country’s story in segments. The one directed by Igor Ivanov aims at tourism promotion, Mancevski presents country’s monasteries, Drakalski promotes Ohrid, whereas the remaining two will focus on wine and archaeology.

Posted by: travel.drops | May 18, 2009

See the world – Ohrid gallery

Our suggestion : “The art of travel ” by Alain de Botton  published by Powell’s Books.

Posted by: travel.drops | May 13, 2009

Feed all your senses, experience Ohrid

Every breath you take, every move you make…all that makes a difference. Step forward and break the routine ! Relaxing kind of life typical for the citizens of Ohrid, without any rush or tension sometimes gives the idea that here the time almost doesn’t exist. And the truth is that the “right time” doesn’t exist – it’s all about now!

Under the protection of Unesco since 1980, Ohrid is a place that unites natural beauty, one of the oldest lakes on our planet of the tectonic origin where some species have been preserved since the last glacial period and couldn’t be found nowhere else. The lake itself is on the altitude of 695 m surrounded with mountains not too far from the Adriatic coast (110 km), so that way the place is under the influence of meditteranean climate as well the continental one , representing a prefect mixture, not allowing too hot temperatures  during the summer for example.

Antique theatre , early christian basilicas, Byzantine chuches with precious fresco paintings, all that concentrated in one place no wonder called a Balkan Jerusalem in a medieval period.

Ohrid,Macedonia

Come and experience Ohrid, keep in touch with the nature and your inner self !

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