What to Visit in Skopje – Recommendations by Dental Tourism Macedonia
Lake Matka is situated on the northern side of Skopje in the SARAJ municipality. Many Skopje citizens and almost every tourist that comes to Skopje visit Matka and Treska lake in the summer months to escape the sweltering heat of the city.
The gorge of Lake Matka was made in the ’60 when the river Treska was harnessed and dam was build to provide electricity for the City of Skopje. Matka gorge hides lots of secrets. One of them is Vrelo cave, one of Europe deepest underwater caves. The Cave is open for a visit all around the year and is only accessible by a short boat ride. Boat tours are available from the Ponton just Bellow the St Andrew Church. The church of St Andrej (Andrew) is located right on the shores of the lake. It was build by Andrew, the brother of King Marko (Krale Marko of Prilep) and his father Volkashin in the early XIV AD.
The mountains that surround the lake are hiding several small churches such as Sv. Nikola, Sv. Bogorodica and Sv. Spas.
For the tourists with adventurous spirit the gorge offers great trails for hiking. All of the hiking trails are well marked and there are different types of trails, from those for beginners to trails for experienced hikers.
Just by the Church of Sv. Andrej there is a mountain hut/hostel and restaurant that offer relaxed atmosphere and wonderful view of the lake. The restaurant is opened throughout all the year.
Vrelo Cave, Matka
The cave entrance is hidden along the Matka canyon, on 1,5 km boat ride from the Matka dam. There is also a ground section above the cave’s entrance, called Suva, known by its stalactites and stalagmites. The biggest stalactite is located in the middle of the cave and it is known as the “Pine” Cone due to its shape. There are two lakes at the end of the cave. The smaller lake is 8m (26.2 feet) long and 15m (49.2 feet) in depth. The bigger lake is 35m (114.8 feet) long and 18m (59 feet) deep.
The most interesting fact about the Vrelo cave is that it is ranked 14th on the list of the deepest caves explored by humans. An international diving team has reached 192m in depth and they called off their mission due to muddied water and bad conditions. Some experts say that it is possible that Vrelo is the deepest underwater cave in the world. The canyon’s caves are home for large population of bats.
The canyon of Matka is home of more than 200 endemic species of plants and 77 endemic species of butterflies. It is simply a must see place.
Vodno mountain, the Millennium Cross
The Vodno mountain on the southwest side of the capital city Skopje. The highest point of the mountain is at Krstovar peak, on 1066m. The mountain offers wonderful view of the city of Skopje.
In 2002 the Millennium Cross was constructed on the Krstovar peak. It is a 66m high cross situated on the top of the Vodno Mountain in Skopje, Republic of Macedonia. It was constructed to serve as a memorial of 2,000 years of Christianity in Macedonia and in the world. The cross was built on the highest point of the Vodno mountain on a place known since the time of the Ottoman Empire as “Krstovar”, meaning “Place of the cross”, as there was a smaller cross situated there.
There is also an elevator installed inside the cross. In 2011 the Millennium Cross ropeway was opened. The ropeway is three and a half km long and it is a connection between the locality called Sredno Vodno and the Millennium cross.
On the left side of the river Vardar, in the ancient part of Skopje, is the old Skopje bazaar. During the years the bazaar has experienced several changes of its look and organization, but it has still kept the spirit of the past.
In the labyrinth of small streets you can still find the craftsmen such as tailors, cobblers, shoe makers, quilt makers, etc. The old part of the town is very alive and can offer vivid atmosphere which radiates from the small shops, coffee and tea rooms, which are always full of tourists.
There are lots of cultural – historical monuments that can be found in the old bazaar: the church of St. Spas, Mustapha Pasha mosque, Chifte Amam, Daut Pasha Amam, Kapan An, Suli An, Kursumli An, etc. Every single corner of the old town hides a secret that waits to be told.
Memorial house of Mother Teresa
The desire to pay respect to one of the most important persons and Nobel Prize winner from Macedonia was accomplished on the 30th of January 2009 with the opening of the Memorial house dedicated to Mother Teresa.
The location of the museum is not randomly chosen. The museum is located on the very place where the old Catholic Church “Sacred heart of Jesus” used to stand. It is where Mother Teresa, then Gonxha Bojaxhiu was baptized just one day after her birth, on the 27th of August 1910.
This place had a great importance and influence on developing of the character of young Gonxha and to her desire to help the poor people. Somehow the location itself represents a symbolic bridge that connects little Gonxha to one of the greatest humanitarian of the world, Mother Teresa.