ALBANIA, MACEDONIA & KOSOVO 1 NIGHTS / 2 DAYS VIA SKOPJE

 

Day 1: Tirana – Saint Naum (139km: 3hrs 20 min) – Ohrid (29km: 50 min) – Skopje (171mi: 3hrs 10 min)

Meet in Tirana and transfer toward Ohrid via Saint Naum. Set amidst lush verdure where the River Crn Drim tumbles into the lake, the monastery of St. Naum is a refuge of tranquility at the very southwestern corner of the Macedonian Republic. Situated 29 km (18 m) from the town of Ohrid and only 1 kilometer (0.6 m) from the Albanian border, the monastery brings the Macedonian experience to a dramatic culmination. As with most Byzantine churches, St. Naum was chosen primarily for its location – on a high, rocky outcropping over the lake, above deep forests and life-giving springs of the river Crn Drim. The monastic complex and church of St. Naum were built originally at the turn of the tenth century by the monk that beared the same name; Macedonians believe you can still hear the saint’s heartbeat by pressing an ear to his stone coffin inside the church. Continue toward Ohrid for half day sightseeing tour of Ohrid. The resort town of Ohrid is one of the oldest settlements in Macedonia dating from before the Slavic period. Ohrid is a UNESCO site located in the Ohrid/Prespa region near Galicica National Park. It has a long rich history but is perhaps best known for the missionary brothers Cyril and Methodius who arrived in Ohrid in 886AD and made Ohrid a leading center of Slavic culture and literary activities. The brothers are credited with the creation of the Cyrillic Alphabet which helped them spread their missionary work in the Slavic world. After our journey on the lake we continue sightseeing on foot strolling through the picturesque alleys of the old town, discovering the craftsmanship of the rich tradition of silver filigree, wood carving, and Ohrid’s Pearls. Visit the protected archaeological museum and the House of Robevc. Visit the first renaissance frescoes in the church of St. Sophia and continue to the Mother of God Church Perivlepta with the apocryphal scenes in rich frescoes from the life of the Virgin. Stop at the Classical Theatre, built 2000 years ago and still used today. At Plaoshnik tour the excavations of the Monastery of St. Pantelejmon, seat of the first Slavic University in Europe founded by St. Clement. Time for lunch of Ohrid trout prepared fresh from the lake. Lunch in Ohrid and proceed toward Skopje. Check-in at Holiday Inn Hotel in Skopje. Night tour of Skopje. Overnight stay at Holiday Inn Hotel. (B, L, D)

Day 2: Skopje – Prishtina (88km: 2hrs 10 min) – Prizren (85km: 1hr 20 min) – Tirana (183mi: 3hrs 20 min)

American buffet breakfast at Holiday Inn Hotel in Skopje. Depart toward Prizren via Prishtina. Start the sightseeing tour of Prishtina. Prishtina, is the capital and largest city of Kosovo. The population of Prishtina is 198,000. The city has a majority Albanian population, alongside other smaller communities including Bosniaks, Roma and others. It is the administrative, educational, and cultural centre of Kosovo. In Prishtina we visit Mother Theresa Boulevard, Scanderbeg Statue, Ethnographic Museum. After the visit in Prishtina drive toward Prizren. In Prizren we will visit: the Ottoman Bridge, the Sinan Mosque, the Gazi Mehmet Pasha Hamam, Albanian League House etc.

Free time in Prizren for lunch. After Prizren depart toward Tirana via the new highway. Arrival in Tirana.