Whilst living in Pristina, weekends away are nearly compulsory. Don’t get me wrong, Pristina is grand…there just isn’t a whole lot to do if you’re around at every weekend. Additionally, as someone hailing from a littoral zone, I need regular body-of-water fixes. So this weekend’s destination was Lake Ohrid in eastern Macedonia.
This weekend also marks my very FIRST visitor! I sat next to this lovely lad on my flight from LAX to London last October and we occasionally hang out (meaning whenever I’m on his side of the world). And now look at this, he is my only visitor so far. I’m looking at you London best friends, by the way. GET OVER HERE.
A fellow American and I set out from Pristina via the bus to Skopje, where we met my flight buddy and we changed buses to catch one to Ohrid. Naturally, the first couple buses to Ohrid were full so we went for dinner and came back to the bus station. The bus was 20 minutes late (Balkan normal), and then when it did arrive there were too many people. A gypsy family was attempting to stand in the aisle of this tiny bus, for a three and a half hour bus ride, but eventually were forced to get off. We were all very happy to get off this bus alive as I think the bus exhaust was filtering right back in and there were no windows. My friend dosed off and when she did wake it was with a relieved, “Oh thank God”. Good times in the Balkans!
Where we stayed:
Luccia Apartments – Nothing fancy, but clean and comfortable, perfectly located, and the host was extremely kind and spoke very good English.
What we did:
Photo opp at Church of St. John of Kaneo – Very short climb up from the shoreline, but with quite a lovely view.
Boat ride – We were looking for a spot to lie out and swim when we decided to take a guy up on his offer to drive us to a different beach. For 10 euro return we weren’t disappointed!
Drinking at the bars – There are a few along the lake and down Kosta Abrash (Hemingway, The Duck Club, Aquarius), but we mostly followed the crowds!
Where we ate:
Belvedere – Near the lake front. Mostly Italian cuisine with some traditional Macedonian dishes – nothing fantastic, but good enough and large portions!
Random lakefront dining – We mostly just wandered and picked eateries based on the view!
On the journey back we got extremely lucky with both legs of the journey being on proper large coaches that even had air con! Though on the way back we did discover that the water supply had been cut off in Pristina due to an alleged ISIS plot to poison our water. I guess you can’t say Pristina is boring after all…