One of the successor states to the former Yugoslavia, Macedonia has a rich and complex history. Officially having declared independence in 1991, the country is an underrated travel destination in southeastern Europe. Landlocked by Greece, Albania, Kosovo, Serbia and Bulgaria, the country is gaining an international reputation for its natural attractions, which include more than 50 lakes and 16 mountains that are more than 6,000 feet in elevation.
However, it’s the country’s capital city, Skopje, and its rich Hellenic heritage that attract approximately 700,000 tourists annually. With its up-and-coming wine industry and its reputation for being a very affordable travel destination, expect Macedonia to become more popular with tourists in the coming years.
Travel advice for Macedonia
To travel to Macedonia, Canadians must have a passport that is valid for at least six months beyond their anticipated departure date. Tourist, student and business visas are required for trips longer than 90 days. If you are visiting family and planning to stay at a private residence, you must register with police within 24 hours of your arrival in the country.
Demonstrations and protests occur. Petty crime is also common in tourist areas, and foreigners can be targets for muggings. Exercise caution and avoid making yourself a target. Credit card fraud is also common, so use your card with care.
The currency of Macedonia is the Macedonian denar (MKD), but the euro and the US dollar are also widely accepted. Even though the country largely operates on a cash-based economy, credit cards can be used at hotels and restaurants.
Macedonia is a diverse country, and a number of languages are commonly spoken: the official language, Macedonian, as well as Turkish, Albanian, Serbian and Romani.
Top tourist attractions in Macedonia
Macedonia offers tourists diverse experiences to choose from. Skopje provides a glimpse into the country’s complex past and is a combination of neoclassical buildings, the old Ottoman Bazaar and fortress, and a modern club scene. The country’s national parks, such as Mavrovo National Park and Pelister National Park, offer travellers the opportunity to ski and hike mountains, and relax in mountainside resorts. There are also fishing spots and great places to enjoy water activities, including Ohrid, Strumica and Kočani. If you are a wine lover, be sure to check out Kavadarci.
Why buy travel insurance for your trip to Macedonia
Whether you are on vacation, visiting family or on business, having a travel insurance policy is important. Because of Macedonia’s political history, the general climate can be somewhat unpredictable, and having travel insurance gives you the peace of mind in knowing you can get travel assistance at any time during your trip. Blue Cross travel insurance plans offer you the personalized coverage you need for a worry-free trip. Get a free online quote for travel insurance.
|Population (2012):||2,105,575||34,754,312 (2012)|
|Diesel (2012):||1.55||1.23 (2012)|
|Gasoline (2012):||1.75||1.23 (2013)|