Part Balkan, part Mediterranean and rich in Greek, Roman and Ottoman heritage, North Macedonia has a fascinating past and a complex national identity.
Glittering Lake Ohrid and its historic town have etched out a place for North Macedonia on the tourist map, but there is a wealth of natural beauty in this small country.
Dramatic mountains have blissfully quiet walking trails, lakes and riding opportunities. The national parks of Mavrovo, Galičica and Pelister are cultivating some excellent cultural and culinary tourism initiatives; these gorgeous regions are as yet little explored, so if you want to get off the beaten track in Europe – this is the place. Tourist infrastructure is scant, but locals are unfailingly helpful.
Skopje’s centre has suffered from a building spree of grotesque faux-neoclassical monuments, buildings and fountains, funded by the previous government. Luckily, its Ottoman old town and buzzing modern areas are untouched and remain charming and authentic.