Ohrid, the eternal city of light and beauty.
|Ohrid is the largest city on Lake Ohrid and the eighth-largest city in the country with over 42,000 inhabitants. Ohrid is notable for once having had 365 churches, one for each day of the year, and has been referred to as a "Jerusalem (of the Balkans)". The city is rich in picturesque houses and monuments, and tourism is predominant. In 1979 and in 1980, Ohrid and Lake Ohrid were accepted as Cultural and Natural World Heritage Sites by UNESCO. In fact, Ohrid is one of only 28 sites that are part of UNESCO's World Heritage that are both Cultural and Natural sites. Archaeological finds indicate that Ohrid is one of the oldest human settlements in all of Europe. The lake itself is over three million years old. Ohrid town is first mentioned in Greek documents from 353 BCE, when it was known as Lychnidos - or, “the city of light.”
Ohrid’s major attractions are all located within a remarkably concentrated and eminently walkable area, among and above the narrow streets of the Old Town lined with restaurants and cafés perfectly suited for relaxing in the cool summer evenings. Ohrid’s many café bars and nightclubs also make for a vibrant nightlife. As for the lake itself, it is so large and so deep that one might mistake it for a small sea.
Lake Ohrid is one of Europe's deepest and oldest lakes, preserving a unique aquatic ecosystem that is of worldwide importance, with more than 200 endemic species. It is the deepest lake of the Balkans, with a maximum depth of 288 m (940 ft) and a mean depth of 155 m (508 ft). It covers an area of 358 km². Its water is so clean, that it permits visibility to the depth of 21 meters. With its exotic flora and fauna, the Lake is one of the largest biological reserves in Europe.
Ohrid has excellent selection of restaurants where you can eat some of the finest Macedonian recipes. Do not forget to try Makalo, a starter spread made with garlic and yogurt and Gjomleze, baked layered pancakes cut in a rhomboid shape, and usually served with white cheese.