Ohrid, North Macedonia, Boat Excursion on the Lake

Ohrid, North Macedonia – Lake Excursion

Lake Ohrid has several historical and natural sights along its shores. In fact, some of them are even hidden below the surface. After another failed attempt to head to Bitola, we opted for a day on the lake. A lake excursion and we had plenty to choose between. Well, plenty of operators, but only two means of transport for one and the same route.

We decided to not go on the bigger ships with many tourists packed on them. They might have been a little cheaper, but instead, we decided to go with a small boat. This way it was only the two of us and three other couples. Still a bit touristy and non-flexible. But it was a nice way to spend a sunny and hot day. The lake does really offer a nice breeze, which is a benefit from it being one of the deepest lakes in Europe.

First Stop: Bay of Bones

We chatted with an elderly couple from the UK as we headed out from the town and continued along the shores of Lake Ohrid. We were at the time six tourists on the small boat and were about to pick up two more along a beach not too far away.

Our first main stop for the day was what is known as the Bay of Bones. This is The museum on water at the excavation site of Ploca Micov Kamen. This is a reconstructed lake village from which many artifacts and remains have been found during the excavations. It is an impressive site and gives insight into how people lived here thousands of years ago. Even with the impressive history and the many interesting findings, it is the setting of the village that makes it special for tourists. The turquoise waters, the surrounding mountains, and the lake itself create a scenery that will most likely impress anyone.

Second Stop: Church of Mother Mary at Zaum

From the Bay of Bones, we continued a little bit south along the coast to a place that is only accessible by boat. This is the site of the Church of Mother Mary at Zaum. This is a church that dates back to the year 1299 and is best known for its rare frescos. Well, for the ones of us who don’t really find the church interesting, there was still something. The beach here, with a floor of large pebbles, gave perfect photo opportunities. The clear turquoise water, the sunshine, mountains, and cloud formations made a perfect background for photos.

Third Stop: Monastery of Saint Naum

The last and final stop was also the main stop of the trip. This was the Monastery of Saint Naum. It is located on a hill just a short distance from the border with Albania and with not only a monastery. This is the location of the Springs of Saint Naum. These are the springs with water from Lake Prespa that have flown through underwater tunnels beneath the mountains before reaching Lake Ohrid.

We actually climbed up to the monastery on the hill to have a look at their restaurant. We were quite hungry and wanted to find something for lunch. That plan was, however, disturbed by two things. First was the encounter of peafowls or peacocks. The second was that no one in the restaurant wanted to realize that we tried to get their attention. It all resulted in us being on our way back down towards the spring and a few other possible restaurants. We eventually ended up with a view of the spring and some nice food to fill our bellies.

The rest of Saint Naum had a very touristy feeling with small shops and the beach itself. We did stroll around for a short period of time before it was time to head back to the small boat. This was right in time. About the same time as we saw the boat, it started to rain.

Our lake excursion was entering its final stage. The ride back across the lake to Ohrid. This was not as pleasant as the ride from Ohrid. Instead, we got a little wet as it continued to rain. It was first when we got close to Ohrid and had the final detour along the cliffs of Kaneo that the sun was shining once more. Once we reached the shores in the center of Ohrid, the rain was mostly forgotten. Now we had an evening to enjoy before our adventure would continue with an excursion to Albania the next morning.

Join us and read more about our Balkan adventure here: Summer in Macedonia 2023

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