How to Spend 1 Day in Skopje
Stone monuments are larger than life in Skopje, and a closer look at this city reveals ancient history, colorful cuisine, and energetic nightlife. If you have one day in Skopje, set out on foot to explore essential sites, then meet some locals over traditional delicacies or a glass of Macedonian wine. Here’s how to plan your trip.
Morning: Explore Skopje’s History
Start the day at a traditional Skopje café, sipping a tiny glass of the Turkish-style coffee that’s beloved in Macedonia. Next, meet up with a guide for a walking tour of the city’s key sights, from the fountains of Macedonia Square to winding streets in the Old Bazaar. Along the way, cross the impressive Stone Bridge, learn about a local saint at Memorial House of Mother Teresa, and check out city views from Mustafa Pasha Mosque. Some walking tours also include the Byzantine Kale Fortress, whose ruined stone ramparts perch high above the city center.
Afternoon: Visit a Museum
Dive deeper into the aspects of Skopje that interest you most, whether you’re all about art, intrigued by history, or want to delve into the Holocaust’s legacy. Creative travelers shouldn’t miss the National Gallery of Macedonia, which houses its collection in a 15th-century Turkish bath. The Archeological Museum of Macedonia displays artifacts that date back to the Bronze Age. And, both moving and informative, the Holocaust Memorial Center uses multimedia exhibits to tell the story of the Balkan Jewish community from ancient times through the 20th century.
Evening: Taste Macedonian Culture
Now that you’ve covered history, return to the present day for a delicious tour of Macedonian flavors. If you want an evening of food and drink, options range from cooking classes to folkloric shows featuring traditional music and dance. Since Macedonia’s been a cultural crossroads for thousands of years, you’ll find dishes that blend a range of traditions. Look for moussaka, a rich dish of baked meat and vegetables;sarma, cabbage rolls stuffed with rice; and ajvar, a flavorful red pepper spread. Wine lovers should try some of Macedonia’s distinctive wines: The most famous grape is vranec, but you’ll also see zilavka, grasevina, and rkatsiteli.