MACEDONIA

MACEDONIA

MACEDONIA

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Name: Matka Canyon
Location: Skopje, Macedonia
Matka is a canyon located west of central Skopje, Macedonia. Covering roughly 5,000 hectares, Matka is one of the most popular outdoor destinations in North Macedonia and is home to several medieval monasteries. The Matka Lake within the Matka Canyon is the oldest artificial lake in the country.

Matka Canyon is home to a wide variety of plants and animals, some of which are unique to the area. Roughly 20% of the plant life found at Matka is endemic and only found here. The canyon is also home to 77 indigenous species of butterfly. The canyon is also home to the most venomous snake in south Europe the Viper. The canyon's caves are home to large populations of bats.

Due in large part to its proximity to Skopje, Matka Canyon is a popular destination for citizens and tourists. The canyon is one of Macedonia's foremost areas for alpine hiking. The climbing season begins around Easter and ends in November. Kayaking on the Treska River is a popular activity, as are fishing, hunting, and swimming. 

The canyon area is home to several historic churches and monasteries. St. Andrew's Monastery is situated in the gorge of the Treska River.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matka_Canyon
Name: Old Bazaar
Location: Skopje, Macedonia
The Old Bazaar is a bazaar located in Skopje. The Old Bazaar falls primarily within the borders of Čair Municipality but a part of it is located in Centar Municipality. As one of the oldest and largest marketplaces in the Balkans, it has been Skopje's centre for trade and commerce since at least the 12th century.

The earliest known sources that describe the existence of a merchant quarter on the bazaar's territory date back to the 12th century. During Ottoman rule of Skopje, the Old Bazaar developed rapidly to become city's main centre of commerce.

Beside its importance as a market place the Old Bazaar is known for its cultural and historical values. Although Ottoman architecture is predominant, remains of Byzantine architecture are evident as well, while recent reconstructions have led to the application of elements specific to modern architecture. The Old Bazaar is still home to several active mosques, türbes, two churches and a clocktower, that, together with the buildings of the Museum of Macedonia and the Museum of Modern Art, form the core of the modern bazaar.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Old_Bazaar,_Skopje
Name: Church of St. John
Location: Ohrid, Macedonia
Saint John the Theologian, Kaneo, is a Macedonian Orthodox church situated on the cliff over Kaneo Beach overlooking Lake Ohrid in the city of Ohrid, Republic of Macedonia. The church is dedicated to John of Patmos, the writer of Revelation, who has been by some considered to be the same person as John the Apostle. The construction date of the church remains unknown but documents detailing the church property suggest that it was built before the year 1447. Archaeologists believe that the church was constructed some time before the rise of the Ottoman Empire very likely in the 13th century. 

Reconstruction work was carried out on the church in the 14th century, shortly before the arrival of Ottoman Turks in Macedonia. A wooden iconostasis was constructed within the church and by the 20th century numerous saints along with the Virgin Mary have been portrayed on the apse. A fresco of Christ Pantocrator can be seen on the dome of the church. A fresco of Saint Clement of Ohrid (whose monastery, Saint Panteleimon, is located close to the church) accompanied by Saint Erasmus of Ohrid can also be seen on a wall of the church.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Church_of_St._John_at_Kaneo
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COUNTRY INFORMATION GUIDE
PLEASE SEE BELOW FACTS, USEFUL US GOVERNMENT TRAVEL LINKS AND BUSINESS VISITOR ACTIVITIES, FOR TRAVEL TO MACEDONIA.
FACTS:
Official Languages: Macedonian / Albanian
Currency: Macedonia Denar (MKD)
Time zone: CET (UTC+1) / CEST (UTC+2)
Drives on the right
Calling code: +389
Local / up-to-date weather in Skopje (and other regions): BBC global weather – click here
US GOVT TRAVEL LINKS:

For more useful information on safety & security, local laws / customs, health and more, please see the below official US travel.state.gov web link for Macedonia travel advice. NB: Entry requirements herein listed are for US nationals only, unless stated otherwise.

You can also find recommended information on vaccinations, malaria and other more detailed health considerations for travel to Macedonia, at the below official US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) weblink.

BUSINESS VISITOR ACTIVITIES*:
Activities you may undertake on a business visa / as a business visitor:
PERMISSIBLE
ATTENDING MEETINGS / DISCUSSIONS: TBC
ATTENDING A CONFERENCE: TBC
RECEIVING TRAINING (CLASSROOM-BASED): TBC
NON-PERMISSIBLE
AUDIT WORK: TBC
PROVIDING TRAINING: TBC
PROJECT WORK: TBC
*This information does not constitute legal advice and is not an exhaustive list. For a full legal assessment on business visitor activities, please revert to your internal company legal team / counsel.
TRAVEL INFORMATION**
It is highly recommenced that you access the above official US travel.state.gov web link and read all safety & security information prior to making your travel arrangements / planning your trip.
PLEASE CLICK / TOGGLE BELOW FOR USEFUL TRAVEL INFORMATION TO MACEDONIA.

The official currency of North Macedonia is the denar (plural denari), denoted by the abbreviation “ден” (den) (international code: MKD). Many Macedonians quote prices in euro (€). The new denar replaced the old denar in 1993 at a rate of 100:1.

Most cities have ATMs where you can withdraw money with cheap commission rates, although there are also plenty of banks and exchange booths where you can easily change money. While banks often offer slightly better rates, you need to register with your passport which may take up to 10 minutes. Changing money in the exchange offices, on the other hand, is fairly straight forward, painless and quick. Do not change money on the street. Shops may accept euro but it is illegal for them to do so.

BY CAR:

In this mountainous developing country, the roads are often narrow and not very well maintained, with warning signs for the quite frequent sharp turns rarely provided, and the safety barriers between your tires and high cliffs often rusty, or sometimes completely absent. In the north, there is a short network of motorways with separated directions and a posted speed limit of 120 km/h, linking Skopje with Tetovo and Gostivar in the west, and with the Alexander the Great Airport and Kumanovo in the east, but the surface quality is hardly better than the rest of the roads. The toll collection on the motorways depends on a system of toll stations (PEAGE) every 20 km or so (typically after leaving and on approaching major towns, which means you will pay twice for the route, say, between Skopje and Tetovo, two neighbouring cities), where all through traffic comes to a complete halt (as opposed to only those leaving and entering the motorway) and pay according to the type of the vehicle (for motorcycles and cars, which is often 20 or 30 denari).

Always make sure your tires are good enough. Especially in spring and autumn, weather in the mountains (Ohrid, Bitola) can differ significantly from the weather in the area you’re coming from.

All directional signs in the country show the town names in Macedonian Cyrillic and their Roman transliterations, sometimes accompanied by a second local language, which is often Albanian.

Renting a car is cheap. With Upgo Car Rent (+389 78 662 299, English spoken), you can get a good car for €20 a day (Oct 2017). He will bring the car to, and get it back from your hotel.

BY TRAIN:

National trains are slow, but they are nonetheless a nice alternative to hot, crowded buses in the summer. The main train line runs from Skopje to Bitola and Skopje to Gevgelia. No trains run to Ohrid.

BY BUS:

Perhaps the most common way of travelling in the country, the buses are frequent and quite reliable, if sometimes a bit slow and old (though not exactly dilapidated). The tickets are typically printed in Macedonian, with English translations or even Roman transliterations rarely provided. Here is a quick guide to reading your Macedonian ticket: The destination will be printed on the top (best to refer to the Wikivoyage article of the town in question for the Macedonian name of it), Дата (Data) translates, non-surprisingly, date, and Час (Čas) is the time of the departure. Перон (Peron) indicates the number of the platform your bus will be departing from, which is usually well-signed in the stations, and Седиште (Sedište) is your seat number, although on less travelled routes, this will typically be assigned to the seats 3 and 4, which means you are allowed to sit whatever place you like. It’s possible to hail buses directly on the streets, in which case you will pay to the driver on board, but if there are no free seats available, this means you are making the whole journey standing—which is unlikely to be the best travel experience. The bus companies often prefer to inscribe their names in the Roman alphabet in the livery, but the tickets will indicate them in the Cyrillic. Common national companies include Rule Turs (Руле Турс), Galeb (Галеб), and Classic Company (Класик Компани). The destination signs in front of the buses are provided in Macedonian, and in the other common local language of the destination if there is one, this in most cases being Albanian.

BY TAXI:

Taxis are perhaps the most common mode of transport in North Macedonia among tourists. Most will usually charge a flat rate of 30 denari (in Skopje 50 denari) with the extra kilometres added on. Be careful when negotiating the price of the fare beforehand. Within city limits, prices over 100 denari are considered expensive even though the amount only converts to a few American dollars. Macedonian cities are small, and would only take approximately 10–15 minutes to travel from one side of the city to the other by car. In Skopje, the capital and largest city, this should work out to an amount of about 100-150 denari.

A general exception to this rule is during peak tourist seasons particularly in the town of Ohrid. The summer months are the most profitable for many small businesses in Ohrid (and for some businesses, the only profitable months) including taxi drivers. For this reason many drivers will charge up to three times the flat rate for the same distance. Most taxis will insist on driving for no less than 100 denari which can be heard as “sto denari” or a “stotka” (slang term for a 100 denari bill). Generally this is excessive but you can either negotiate the price down to 80 or even 70 denari to be reasonable, or else simple bargain hunting is all that is required. During the peak seasons it is possible to find drivers willing to go as low as 40. Never feel pressured to take a taxi that seems overpriced.

BY BOAT:

There are plenty of boats for charter around Lake Ohrid and will show you the whole lake for a cheap price.

BY BICYCLE:

Despite often challenging (but also scenic) terrain, North Macedonia is, generally, a pleasant destination for bicycle travel. An idea of North Macedonia’s geography can be given by the local toponymy: in most countries, mountains and hills are named, while areas of flat land often lack specific names; in North Macedonia, flat land is precious, and every area of it has an individual name, such as Bitolsko Pole (“the Field of Bitola”), and Prilepsko Pole (“the Field of Prilep”). Many bookstores are decorated with a country’s 3-dimensional map, which is quite impressive.

There are many paved country roads that are in good condition, but see little traffic. Main roads betwen major cities may be busy, with narrow lanes and no shoulders; however, in many cases the busy new road (avtopat) is parallelled by the old road which now sees very little traffic, but is still maintained to some extent. This is the case, for example, for roads between Skopje and Veles, between Prilep and Bitola, or between Bitola and Resen. Some of these older roads are paved with stone, rather than with asphalt. As more expressways are built (e.g. the one from Kičevo to Ohrid is under construction as of 2017, one may hope that more of today’s busy main roads will be relegated to the status of older low-traffic roads.

North Macedonia’s air quality is pretty good, and even busy roads have much less dust and exhaust than roads in e.g. China. Unlike China, in North Macedonia one very rarely sees pedestrians or moped riders wearing face masks.

Lots of people ride bicycles in cities (for transportation and recreation), and one can see recreational bicyclists in the countryside as well. Strangely, you can see stores selling new bicycles (along with other products) much more often than stores selling spare parts. Still, major cities, such as Skopje and Bitola, have specialized shops for bicycle parts and repairs; in smaller towns, one may look for a vendor of spare parts, or a bike repair man, in a local bazaar. Gas stations may or may not have air pumps.

In the past, it was possible to take a bicycle on a train. As of 2017, train stations display an order (dated 2016) which prohibits taking bulky items, “including bicycles” on trains. However, in practice bicycles are often still allowed on older trains, even if they may be fully prohibited on new ones.

A national 1:300,000 map, as well as maps of some national parks and some regional and city maps, are published by Trimaks, and sold in Trimaks stores and by other book vendors in major cities.

A word of caution: very occasionally, a road shown on a map may not exist, or may not allow bicycles. For example, looking at a map, one may be tempted to take a scenic route from Skopje to Ohrid, along the Kozjak Reservoir (Ezero Kozjak) and the valley of the Treska River, via Makedonski Brod and Kičevo. Some maps show such a road running along the east coast of the reservoir; unfortunately, although it exists (as of 2017, it’s a single-lane road, and cars are allowed to travel on it in different directions during different hours), bicycles are not allowed to proceed beyond the gates of the Jasin Nature Reserve. Other maps show such a road running along the reservoir’s west side; alas, in reality (as of 2017) it does not exist at all, and to fill the missing piece (a section from the Kozjak Dam to Zdunje) would require remarkable feats of engineering.

EAT:

Typical Macedonian food resembles the food of the southern Balkans, meaning loads of grilled meat (known as skara). Side dishes usually have to be ordered separately. North Macedonia is also famous for its shopska salata, a mixed salad of cucumbers, tomatoes and grated sirenje. Sirenje is a white cheese similar to feta cheese. Usually Macedonians will translate the English cheese to sirenje. Another local speciality is ajvar, a red paste made from roasted peppers and tomatoes, which is either used as an appetizer or side dish. Another typical local dish is tarator which is comparable to the Greek tzatziki. It is made of yoghurt, cucumbers, and garlic and it is served as a cold soup.

The most popular street food is either burek (бурек) which is a flaky phyllo-like pastry filled with melted cheese and/or ham, or pressed, panini style sandwiches, called toast (тост).

Stobi Flips are a ubiquitous snack food found in supermarkets and corner stores, with the shape and texture of a cheese doodle, but a salty peanut flavour.

Traditional food:

Tavče gravče (тавче гравче) is the national dish and unique to North Macedonia. It basically consists of beans, paprika and is traditionally served with cut sausage mixed in.

Fish:

North Macedonia, being landlocked, does not offer a great variety of fresh fish. A notable exception is Ohrid, where fresh fish from the local lake can be enjoyed. If you have no objections to eating endangered species, the Ohrid trout is a local delicacy.

DRINK:

Rakija is a strong grape brandy that has the best claim to being the republic’s national beverage.

Macedonians boast the largest winery in the Balkan area—the Tikveš (Tikvesh) winery in Kavadarci. Red wines are usually better than white ones. Try T’ga za Jug, a Macedonian affordable red wine made from a local grape variety called Vranec. Local white wines include Traminec and Temjanika.

The local beer market is dominated by Skopsko (Скопско, “of Skopje”, following the Slavic convention of naming beers after their origin), a drinkable, if not entirely distinctive, lager. There are also many breweries which brew surprisingly good-tasting beer.

Sale of any alcoholic beverages from the stores end by 21:00 all over the country, but in the restaurants and cafés, it’s business as usual.

Unlike much of the rest of the Balkans, sparkling water or water with gas is instead mineral water, or kisela voda.

The most common coffee drink in cafés is the macchiato (макијато, espresso topped by a foamy cream), which can be ordered as a single shot, small, mali macchiato, or double shot, large, golem macchiato. Cold cappuccinos with flavoured creams coming in large glasses are also popular in summer.

Tea is pretty much limited to the black and green varieties, and served in bags. Those longing for strong brewed black tea should head for the tea-houses run by the local Turks in the old town of Skopje or Ohrid.

Being the national tourist attraction, Ohrid is more expensive than any other destination in North Macedonia. Hotel prices are very expensive throughout the country and charge double rates to foreigners. It is therefore advisable to stay in private accommodation. If someone does not ask you at the bus station, you can always consult one of the many travel agencies in and around the centre. If you do opt for private accommodation make sure you see the room first and then decide. Payment is normally made in advance and should cost no more than €10-15 per night per person in peak season and half that during the rest of the year. Finding suitable accommodation in July and August is not easy, so try and book through a travel agent in advance.

When visiting Lake Ohrid, staying in nearby Struga as opposed to the more popular Ohrid is a wise alternative for the price and tourist-trap conscious.

North Macedonia is full of markets and bazaars well worth a visit. The bazaars of Skopje, Tetovo, Ohrid and Bitola are the largest selling anything from dried peppers to fake designer sunglasses. While much of the merchandise may not be worth buying, there is normally a good selection of shoes, fruit, and vegetables of good quality, depending on the season. Merchants are generally pleasant and welcoming, especially to westerners, who remain something of a rarity outside of Skopje and Ohrid.

Ohrid is famous for its pearls and there are dozens of jewellers in the old town that will offer good products at decent prices. The Macedonian Orthodox paintings in old Ohrid are also worth a look.

Tipping is not seen as essential, but it is always welcomed.

**All travel information has been sourced from wikivoyage. However like wikipedia, wikivoyage is an open platform editable by any member of the public. Therefore, although very useful, all above information IS INDICATIVE ONLY and must be verified prior to personal use. Moreover, if you wish to see more information please visit: https://en.wikivoyage.org/wiki/North_Macedonia
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Name: Matka Canyon
Location: Skopje, Macedonia
Matka is a canyon located west of central Skopje, Macedonia. Covering roughly 5,000 hectares, Matka is one of the most popular outdoor destinations in North Macedonia and is home to several medieval monasteries. The Matka Lake within the Matka Canyon is the oldest artificial lake in the country.

Matka Canyon is home to a wide variety of plants and animals, some of which are unique to the area. Roughly 20% of the plant life found at Matka is endemic and only found here. The canyon is also home to 77 indigenous species of butterfly. The canyon is also home to the most venomous snake in south Europe the Viper. The canyon's caves are home to large populations of bats.

Due in large part to its proximity to Skopje, Matka Canyon is a popular destination for citizens and tourists. The canyon is one of Macedonia's foremost areas for alpine hiking. The climbing season begins around Easter and ends in November. Kayaking on the Treska River is a popular activity, as are fishing, hunting, and swimming. 

The canyon area is home to several historic churches and monasteries. St. Andrew's Monastery is situated in the gorge of the Treska River.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matka_Canyon
Name: Old Bazaar
Location: Skopje, Macedonia
The Old Bazaar is a bazaar located in Skopje. The Old Bazaar falls primarily within the borders of Čair Municipality but a part of it is located in Centar Municipality. As one of the oldest and largest marketplaces in the Balkans, it has been Skopje's centre for trade and commerce since at least the 12th century.

The earliest known sources that describe the existence of a merchant quarter on the bazaar's territory date back to the 12th century. During Ottoman rule of Skopje, the Old Bazaar developed rapidly to become city's main centre of commerce.

Beside its importance as a market place the Old Bazaar is known for its cultural and historical values. Although Ottoman architecture is predominant, remains of Byzantine architecture are evident as well, while recent reconstructions have led to the application of elements specific to modern architecture. The Old Bazaar is still home to several active mosques, türbes, two churches and a clocktower, that, together with the buildings of the Museum of Macedonia and the Museum of Modern Art, form the core of the modern bazaar.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Old_Bazaar,_Skopje
Name: Church of St. John
Location: Ohrid, Macedonia
Saint John the Theologian, Kaneo, is a Macedonian Orthodox church situated on the cliff over Kaneo Beach overlooking Lake Ohrid in the city of Ohrid, Republic of Macedonia. The church is dedicated to John of Patmos, the writer of Revelation, who has been by some considered to be the same person as John the Apostle. The construction date of the church remains unknown but documents detailing the church property suggest that it was built before the year 1447. Archaeologists believe that the church was constructed some time before the rise of the Ottoman Empire very likely in the 13th century. 

Reconstruction work was carried out on the church in the 14th century, shortly before the arrival of Ottoman Turks in Macedonia. A wooden iconostasis was constructed within the church and by the 20th century numerous saints along with the Virgin Mary have been portrayed on the apse. A fresco of Christ Pantocrator can be seen on the dome of the church. A fresco of Saint Clement of Ohrid (whose monastery, Saint Panteleimon, is located close to the church) accompanied by Saint Erasmus of Ohrid can also be seen on a wall of the church.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Church_of_St._John_at_Kaneo
FLIGHT TIMES / MAJOR CITIES
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...WHO ARE WE?

...WHO ARE WE?

…WHO ARE WE?
…WHO ARE WE?

My name is Manny and I would like to personally welcome you to Global Visas.

Our team is dedicated to providing a consular service which focuses on attention to detail, delivering a personal approach and with a high focus on compliance. Feedback is very important to us, therefore any comments you provide about our service are invaluable.

Our team is dedicated to providing a consular service which focuses on attention to detail, delivering a personal approach and with a high focus on compliance. Feedback is very important to us, therefore any comments you provide about our service are invaluableI have provided some of my own personal testimonials over my years in immigration below; working and leading on very large projects...

I have provided some of my own personal testimonials over my years in immigration below; working and leading on very large projects.

Please do also view our introductory video at the following web link:

https://usglobalvisas.com/personal/more/about-us

We look forward to working with you and meeting all your expectations.

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