Showing posts with label Lake Ohrid region. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Lake Ohrid region. Show all posts

Monday, January 16, 2017

Vevcani Carnival - a 1400 year old tradition


Vevcani Carnival is celebrated every year for more than 1400 years. It is held every year on 13 and 14 January (on the eve and the first day of the New Year, according to the old calendar).
Carnival is a mix of pagan and modern way of celebration. The main characteristics of the carnival are: archaism, secretiveness, and improvisation.

The village of Vevčani is situated in the southwestern range at the foot of the Jablanica mountain range. It is 800 – 950 metres above sea level. The village is located 14 km North-West of the town of Struga, close to Lake Ohrid region. Carnival is one of the most important festive day in the area. According to some sources, the tradition of the Vevcani Carnival is dedicated to St. Basil the Great, a Christian saint and bishop from Asia Minor, who is considered the founder of the monastic tradition in Eastern Orthodoxy.

Vevcani from morning of this festive day, turned into a kind of theater without borders. First participants backstage them dressed and shaped masks, far from the public eye, designed and made weeks before. Then all the participants go on streets with their masks and perform their imaginary scenarios like real actors.

 Vevcani Carnival as a collection of "archaic, mystery and unique masks, but the most traditional masks are: "groom and bride," "Stupid August" and musicians. Carnival can regularly see the masks and costumes that satirizes everyday political events in the country and in the world. Vevcani Carnival is considered also an outdoor theater. It engages all residents of the municipality, and residents open doors of their homes to guests with traditional specialties and good wine.

Under cloudless skies, hundreds of Vevcani citizens and curious guests from Ohrid, Struga, Macedonia and abroad, walked for nearly two hours in a parade, with the masks that this time was an image of the actual situation in Macedonia and the world.

Source: http://www.dw.com/mk/

Monday, November 14, 2016

Paragliding in Macedonia - even if you don’t fly, you can just enjoy the nature

Paragliding has a certain tradition in Macedonia. Thanks to its specific terrain configuration, easy accessibility to the mountains,  and weather conditions that allow flying almost all year around, Macedonia has become a place of pilgrimage for paragliding pilots around the globe. It has grown rapidly as a sport as well as a tourist attraction enabling almost everyone to get that amazing feeling of flying like a bird.
 The center of the ‘party’ is Krushevo, the highest town in the country at 1,350m above sea level. It rises above Pelagonia, the biggest valley in Macedonia. That is the place with perfect conditions for flying on most days of the year as well as for landing in the valleys around. Both professionals and beginners just love to fly from here.  Different international flying competitions are held here every year, so most of the time you will find pilots from all around the globe hanging out and flying high….
All year around, Krushevo town hosts many paragliders, including members of the Macedonian paragliding clubs, their friends and clients for tandem flights.. They all enjoy the heights, the beautiful nature, hanging out and having good food.
Another famous destination for flying  is Ohrid, or, more specifically, Galichica mountain.  Here you can enjoy tandem flights during the entire summer. Starting at around 1,700m above sea level you will see amazing views of Ohrid lake, a mountain and the old town of Ohrid. The adrenalin runs high and you get a sense of both nature and freedom at its best.
The third famous location of my choice is Shar Mountain… Starting at 1,600m altitude some pilots reach even 3,000m and higher. As an extra bonus, you will meet a stunningly beautiful  mountain that will take care of you at high altitudes...
Of course, if you are not able to go as far as Ohrid or Krushevo or Shara, then Skopje flying area is also a place that offers tandems both from Vodno Mountain and from Skopska Crna Gora.

Even if you don’t fly, you can just enjoy the nature...

Author: Anita Palceska @balkanwibe
Source: https://www.balkanvibe.com/story/On-the-Wings-of-Adventure-Paragliding-in-Macedonia/229
 

Monday, September 19, 2016

Innovative Tourism Product Development Competition -Korca and Lake Ohrid Region



The Ministry of Economy, Tourism, Trade and Entrepreneurship (METTE), Albanian Investment Development Agency (AIDA) and the Albanian Tourism Industry, with the support of RisiAlbania Project are launching the third edition of the “Risi Turistike Award”, this time in the Korça region in order to foster the development on new touristic products. Korca is the Municipality which include the city of Pogradec, situated on the shore of Lake Ohrid, the oldest and deepest lake in Europe.
The innovative tourism products will help to create new products and itineraries and or add value to the existing ones, by providing a richer and authentic experience for the tourists in both regions.
Risi Albania is a SDC project aiming to facilitate youth employment.
“Risi Turistike” is inviting all interested companies/ organizations to submit a proposal and business plan to develop and implement a new touristic product in the region of Korça. Deadline for submission of the proposals is November 10th 2016.
The results of the competition will be announced during the public event on December 9th 2016.

The aim of the Tourism Product Development competition:
- Attract more tourists in the Korça region, through diversification of the tourism product
- Extend the time of stay in the Korça region
- Increase the income from tourism in Korça region
- Increase employment opportunities for youth in Korça region.
Find more: http://risialbania.al/index/en/innovative-tourism-product-development-competition-award/




Monday, September 5, 2016

Ohrid- the history on the lake

The history and values of Lake Ohrid are featured in Australian leading national news media "The Australian"
The article "Ohrid, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia: history on the lake" is written by ANGELA SAURINE. She writes some reasons why people of Australia should visit and learn about this region:

ICONIC IMAGE: If there is one sight that symbolises Ohrid, in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia’s southwest, it is Church of St John (or Jovan) overlooking the lake. Built on a cliff above the fishermen’s settlement of Kaneo, a short water-taxi ride from the port, the Orthodox Church is dedicated to John of Patmos, who is also believed to be John the Apostle. While the exact date it was built is unknown, archaeologists believe it was in the 13th century, before the rise of the Ottoman Empire, with a mix of Byzantine and Armenian architectural styles. While there, grab a bite at one of the restaurants built into the rocks at Kaneo, which have inviting decks over the water.

ANCIENT GLORIES: Ohrid is one of 28 UNESCO World Heritage-listed sites recognised for both their natural and cultural attributes. With its narrow cobblestone streets and traditional two-storey houses with rectangular windows and timber beams, the medieval old town is a wonderful place to wander. Built in 200BC, the city’s well-preserved ancient theatre was once used for gladiator fights. Since being revived in the 1980s, it has been used as a venue for concerts and the performance of ancient plays and comedies during the annual Ohrid Summer Festival in July and August. A Game of Thrones-esque fortress also sits at the top of the hill overlooking the city. In the early 11th century, Ohrid was the capital of a Slavic empire ruled by Car Samuil, and his fortress was one of the most impregnable strongholds in the Balkans, with 16m-high walls that stretched for 3km. Archaeological excavations indicate the fortress was constructed on the site of an earlier fortification that was likely built by Alexander the Great’s father, Phillip II of Macedon, in the 4th century BC. The city is also home to one of the first Slavic universities, the Ohrid Literary School, which dates to the 10th century.

SAIL AWAY: At 350sq km, Lake Ohrid is so big it feels more like an ocean. It is one of the oldest lakes in the world, formed by tectonic shifts in the Earth’s crust three to four million years ago and, at 300m, also one of the deepest. Hopping on a boat and exploring the lake and its many attractions is a must. Mato Co International offers tours ranging from half an hour to a full day that visit cave churches, fishing villages and monasteries. A highlight is the Museum on Water at the Bay of Bones, a recreation of a settlement that existed from 1600-800BC with houses built on a wooden platform on stilts.

GRAPE ESCAPE: On a similar latitude to California’s Napa Valley and Tuscany in Italy, this area is emerging as a wine destination. Evidence of oak wine barrels from 500BC have been found near the capital city of Skopje, 170km from Ohrid, and the country has more than 100 wineries. The most famous grape variety is vranec, which means “a strong, black and powerful horse”, and accounts for nearly half of the vineyards planted with red grapes. But cabernet sauvignon, merlot, pinot noir, shiraz, chardonnay, sauvignon blanc, muscat and riesling are also grown. Tikvesh Winery, Stobi Winery and Popova Kula Winery are all worth a visit on a day trip.


Original Article:

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/life/travel/ohrid-former-yugoslav-republic-of-macedonia-history-on-the-lake/news-story/1fb1e30c6488b1b83ac9de01e9fe21f2

Monday, June 27, 2016

Questionnaire on Lake Ohrid

What comes to one’s mind when Lake Ohrid is mention? Koran fish, lakeside, boats, swimming, nature? Maybe all of that!

A trial questionnaire was implemented in the Albanian part of Lake Ohrid Region (LOR) in the framework of the project, in order  to gain an understanding of people’s views on the region. The questionnaire, designed by ICCROM, an advisory body to UNESCO, gathered a preliminary set of data through interviewing people living and working in, or visiting, the area. 

The journalist talking to a local in Hudenisht
It was implemented by an Albanian journalist, Mr Genci Angjellari, contracted by IUCN, for an intense five-day campaign. Some 116 people—78 locals and 38 visitors—were interviewed in various locations along the Albanian side of Lake Ohrid including the city of Pogradec and the villages of Lin, Tushemisht, Hudenisht, Verdove, Starove and Drilon.

The questionnaire began by asking questions on the values and attributes of LOR today, gaining an understanding of the public’s current relationship and connections with their heritage, and, indirectly, the level of satisfaction with the current situation. Later sections, on tourism and visitor experience, aimed to gain insight into the impact of tourism on the intangible values and traditional lifestyles in LOR.

Activities associated with LOR
Initial results revealed a local population that has travelled extensively in the lake area and enjoyed many of its heritage places and experiences. Some ten percent of local residents benefit in one way or another from business and employment opportunities connected with tourism. Visitors to LOR seem to be largely domestic and, together with local residents, they identified a range of positive experiences related to the cultural and natural landscape. Future services for visitors would need to be developed in a way that provides both traditional hospitality, both in hotels and through the promotion of more locally based initiatives, such as home stays.
Culinary and agriculture in LOR 

The data gathered were processed by the ICCROM team and preliminary findings were shared at the May Promoting Heritage workshop, which equipped participants with genuine knowledge of the communities living in or visiting the area and their views about LOR. The results of this modest campaign demonstrate the importance of more substantial public consultation in the future and for extension to the Macedonian side of the lake, to inform decision making for managing LOR’s heritage and promoting it as a tourism destination.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Activities on Lake Ohrid Day (21 June)

21st June is Lake Ohrid Day. This decision was taken 16 years ago on February 2000 by the Joint Lake Ohrid Management Board.

This is a day when all the communities living on the shores of Lake Ohrid Region should just remind the outstanding values of Lake Ohrid. They should teach to their children to love and protect this natural treasure. On this occasion, every year three municipalities around Lake Ohrid, (Ohrid, Pogradec and Struga) organize many festive activities. 
This year the day was celebrated in Ohrid City, where a number of cultural and sportive activities  were organized by the Ohrid Municipality. Part of these activities, was the  opening of an exhibition with children's paintings inspired by Lake Ohrid. At the end of this activity, in symbolic way, the Mayor of Ohrid Mr Nikola Bakracheski and the Mayor of Pogradec Mr Eduart Kapri signed a document expressing the commitment of their municipalities to save and protect the world's unique ecosystem of Lake Ohrid. They put the document in a bottle which was taken to the Lake by a canoe boat. This symbolic day engage not only local government but also the community and helps at raising awareness about protecting Lake Ohrid.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Fourth Management Planning Workshop of the Lake Ohrid region

The Fourth Management Planning Workshop, in the framework of the project “Towards strengthened governance of the shared transboundary natural and cultural heritage of the Lake Ohrid region” will take place in Tushemisht, Albania, on 12 and 13 May 2016.

The workshop will be an opportunity to present the progress to date on the development of the management planning document required for the preparation of the extension file to the World Heritage property “Natural and Cultural Heritage of the Ohrid region” (the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia) to the Albanian part of the Lake Ohrid. Through extensive group work, the workshop will have a thematic focus on a) the preparation of the Master Plan for the Municipality of Pogradec, b) the Lin Peninsula, c) the Drilon Springs, d) the Memelisht site and its surroundings, and e) the ecological and physical environment of Lake Ohrid region.

This management planning workshop series is part of the project “Towards strengthened governance of the shared transboundary natural and cultural heritage of the Lake Ohrid region” funded European Union and the Ministry of Environment of the Republic of Albania).
More information about the Lake Ohrid region project can be found at: whc.unesco.org/en/lake-ohrid-region/
Lake Ohrid, Pogradec, Albania (23/03/2016) / UNESCO

 

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Collaborative management of Lake Ohrid is critical for Natural and Cultural Heritage

By Stephanie Gentle
Successful management of the Lake Ohrid region depends heavily on collaboration between diverse stakeholders and a harmonious balance of nature, culture, landscape and development. During the training on Collaborative Integrated Management of Protected and Heritage Landscapes held in April in Lin Peninsula, Albania, the stakeholders learned how to develop an integrated and cooperative approach to managing complex landscapes.

Group of experts in Lin Pogradec 
“The first success is that we now think of the lake as one whole, together with our Macedonian partners. We are now aware that we have to cooperate with our partners and protect the lake from damages that have been made until now”, said Mr. Mihallaq Qirjo, Director of the Regional Agency for Protected Areas (RAPA) for Korca region, speaking about the positive impacts the project has achieved thus far.

The training brought together more than 20 representatives from Albania and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, including the respective Ministries of Environment and Culture, protected area authorities, representatives from fisheries and tourism industries, as well as experts from ICCROM, ICOMOS and IUCN.

“This training assists the two countries to improve and upgrade transboundary cooperation by helping to better understand Lake Ohrid’s outstanding universal values, both natural and cultural. Cooperation between diverse stakeholders is the key to expanding the mechanisms for transboundary cooperation, strengthening the involvement of various stakeholders, and also harmonizing the actions on both sides through joint management activities,” said Mr. Oliver Avramoski, Project Officer at IUCN Regional Office for Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

The course had a strong focus on interactive learning, with an emphasis on group work, practical exercises and field work. The training’s objectives included participants achieving a sound understanding of various mandates, rights and responsibilities that can affect complex landscapes; understanding different types of governance that can be applied to protected landscapes and the importance of collaboration and partnership; gaining experience of co-management approaches that combine nature, culture, local needs and development; and gaining new skills and understandings in consensus building, negotiation and conflict resolution. This knowledge contributes to the development of a co-management system for the Pogradec Protected Landscape and the potential transboundary World Heritage property in the Lake Ohrid region.

The training was organized as part of the joint EU UNESCO project “Towards strengthened governance of the shared transboundary natural and cultural heritage of the Lake Ohrid region”. The project seeks to reinforce transboundary cooperation between Albania and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, establish integrated management mechanisms, increase the effectiveness of capacity building, and profile the transboundary area and its sustainable tourism opportunities. In addition, the project aims to support the efforts of national authorities in the preparation of a nomination file to extend the World Heritage property “Natural and Cultural Heritage of the Ohrid Region” to the Albanian side.

Source: