Balkans 2016 – Day 26 : Resen to Ohrid, Macedonia

 

Another short ride day as it is only around 40km to Ohrid. Weather is sunny and cool so it’s perfect for riding. The mornings so far starts at around 10 to 12 C and then climbs up to around 25C. After a quick coffee at the motel restaurant I pushed off towards Ohrid. I have heard a lot about this resort lake town so I am really looking forward to it. Just outside Resen I noticed a lot of apple trees. I am told this region is famous for its apples. So I decided to ask a nice lady if I could have some . She gladly gave me 8. Yes free fruits.

The ride starts with gentle climb and it eventually got steeper and steeper. I had to climb to 1,200 m again. Thankfully I am on the A3 main road and road conditions were good. It was not as interesting.  I was happy that the descend was long and fast.

I rode all the way to the waterfront of the ancient lake just to orientate myself and wanted to take a break and maybe some lunch before looking for places to stay. Almost immediately someone in a bike approached me and offered me a room to stay but at a price. I have heard of this. It is common that you do not look for rooms in Ohrid they will look for you. He initially offered me a private room for 15 Euros but I was not interested. I was planning to look for a place called Sunny Lake Hostel recommended by Iuosu. Then he came down his offer to 10 Euros and I decided to go have a look at his place. It’s slighty off the main area and it has a beautiful garden and porch with a huge Kiwi Fruit tree. Yes Kiwi. The room was nice and comfy and comes with attached bathroom and also with a balcony. He is such a nice fellow so I decided to take it. Wifi is included as well.

After sorting out my stuff and settling in I decided to go visit all the famous sites in Ohrid. I am told there are 365 churches in Ohrid. So I will focus only on the famous touristy ones. The great thing about Ohrid is that all the famous sites are all within walking distance from town and also between each other.  So I left my bike and walked instead.

I headed to yet another ancient amphitheater first. All these sites are situated on the hill so you will have to walk uphill to get there. Enroute I passed by a fortified town which must be the old town of Ohrid. Beautiful town with narrow cobbled stone roads and houses all perched on the hill overlooking at the mighty lake.  The Amphitheater as with the one at Bitola is very well preserved but it’s smaller.  After a rather quick look see and photos I headed towards the Samuels Fortress which is the largest fortress in Macedonia and it takes up the entire peak of the Ohrid hill. Before arriving there I passed by a church. I did not go in as you have to pay. So I just enjoyed it from the outside.

Samuels fortress is truly magnificent and has a fantastic view of the Ohrid city and the lake. I took many pictures there. The fortress is built in the 10th century. After that I moved on to see the most famous and photographed building in Macedonia called Saint Jovan Kaneo Church. I can see why. It is beautifully preserved and situated in a corner of the cliff overlooking the Ohrid. I also took many photos here.

On the way there I met a Korean solo traveller and chatted for awhile. Turns out he shared a room with a young Malaysian just yesterday. Interesting indeed.  The Korean guy took a bus from Albania and hitchhiked to Ohrid. After while we said our goodbyes and went off in opposite direction.

After St Jovan Kaneo I decided I had enough of sightseeing and headed back to town to people watch. It was close to dinner time and the city walkways as full of people sitting outdoors either having coffee or a bite.  Since I had a substantial lunch earlier on I decided to have a simple dinner back on the balcony of my room.

After dinner I turned on the TV to watch a bit but soon was sleepy and turned in early. Tomorrow I will cross over to Albania and will say goodbye to Macedonia with fond and great memories.

Lions Project  : RM 116.50 ( Represents 10 sen to 1KM ridden so far in support of the fund raising effort )

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Apples galore
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Ancient tunnels
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Lake Ohrid
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Lake view
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Lunch a tad salty
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Fortified old city of Ohrid
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Amphitheater
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Hello from the fortress
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Nice scenic coffee place
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Lake Ohrid
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Old town
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Hello from the peak
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The mighty fortres
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St Jovan Kaneo
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Another view of St Jovan church
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Great views for the hill

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More fantastic views
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Albania is across the lake

Author: krankster

I am an avid cyclist that loves mountain biking, bike commuting and most of all bicycle touring. I am a freelance leadership coach and hope to inspire others through my cycling adventures.

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