Bitola is nicknamed “city of consuls”. Bitola is a nice place to visit since Pelister National Park is close, the ancient city of Heraklea is there, it has nice Ottoman architecture and 19th century romantic architecture, so some good examples of everything. It can all be done in a day including enjoying coffee on Shirok Sokak. Krusevo is an important winter and summer tourist center. Almost every house here in Krusevo is a monument.The best conditions are from June to September perfect time for paragliding and ride the bike.
Bitola & Krusevo
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Everyday at 08:00
Price for 1 person: €170
Price for 2 persons: €95 – per person
Price for 3 persons: €70 – per person
Price for 4 persons: €60 – per person
Price for 5 persons: €60 – per person
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Once we arrive at Bitola, on the right, you can see Mount Pelister (2,601 m tall) and Pelister National Park, which is the smallest but oldest national park in Macedonia (opened in 1948). It is famous for its ancient Molika pine trees and many other different types of flora and fauna and it conserves some rare glacial lakes, Pelisterski Ochi (the Pelister Eyes). It is a famous winter ski resort with hotels and ski-lifts.
In Bitola we visit the church of St. Dimitri, dating back to the 19th century and renowned for being one of the biggest churches in the Balkans. Then we just have a quick glance at Yeni Mosque, built in 1559 which is now an art gallery, then the Yahdar-Kadi Mosque (built in 1562) and the Isak Mosque (built in 1508-09).
At the heart of the town is the Clock Tower. The River Dragor runs through the town. Sirok Sokak (a long pedestrian area) is renowned for the beautiful old houses that belong to the 19th-century architecture. Bitola is a town of consulates, also the town where the Manaki brothers, famous for their pioneering work with the camera, opened their Studio of Art Photography in 1905. In honor of their work in photography, and later, cinematography, the first international film camera festival in the world was started here in 1979 and is held every September.
After this, we go to the ancient Macedonian town of Heraclea Lyncestis by bus. It was the first major town established in the rich Pelagonia valley in the 4th century BC. It was founded by Philip II of Macedon, the father of Aleksandar III of Macedon. Archaeological excavations are still going on at this site and so far a Roman Bath, a Roman amphitheathre, a Courtroom and a small and big Basilicas from the 5th century have been discovered. The basilicas have the most beautiful and well preserved mosaic floors which are also the biggest in the Balkans and considered to be ones of the most valuable in the world from this period.
After Bitola, We will continue to Krushevo, the city with the highest altitude in the country. Firstly we will visit monument Meckin Kamen. Continue in city and see Makedonium – The Makedonium almost looks like a heart valve, except it’s white and has around 10 massive stained-glass skylights poking out from its circular base. In North Macedonia, it has become a symbol of statehood. It overlooks the town of Kruševo from over 4,000 feet, which makes it fairly prominent, but that’s where the symbolism ends, visit the tomb of Toshe Proeski, also enjoy the beautiful mountainous terrain. Also visit and St. Preobrazenie monastery and enjoy in wonderfull panorama of the region.
According to Adrian Rum, Bitola originates from the word Obitelovoj – an expression that is still used in the Croatian language which during the Middle Ages was used for a community of monks, as a family or monastery. For the same reasons, the Greeks called it Monastiri. The city of Bitola got its name after the great landowner Toljo, who had his own fortress near the present-day Bitola village Bukovo. At the time when the Turks came to conquer this part of Macedonia, in order to call the great landowner Toljo for struggle, they told him “Bi Tolo, do bi Toljo”.
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