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Ohrid, Macedonia


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Few have ever heard of this magnificent and magical city which has been a city/lake retreat for over two thousand years! Two thousand four hundred to be exact!

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Few have ever heard of this magnificent and magical city which has been a city/lake retreat for over two thousand years! Two thousand four hundred to be exact!


 Ohrid is an ancient descendant from Lychida, a town whose artistic achievements were woven into the tapestry of a powerful ancient civilization.

The town of Ohrid is rich in cultural and archeological history.  It was an important religious center in ancient times, and likewise through the widely renowned Ohrid archbishopric, the town through the centuries represented the entire ecclesiastical history of Macedonia.  It was once said that there were 365 churches representing each day of the year with only 42,000 inhabitants! It bears the name "The Balkan Jerusalem".  St. Clement of Ohrid founded the first Slavonic university which was located in Orhid.


I was fortunate to have lived here for a year, and often reflected how it reminded me of Laguna Beach, California, as a beautiful hillside community nestled near the shore.  Laguna with its ocean views, Ohrid perched on a lake captures you with its magical embrace and peaceful tranquility. Truly an environment that is humbling and causes the spirit to reflect and embrace the

beauty of the countryside and decency of its inhabitants. Though Laguna Beach and Ohrid may be similar in topography, they are centuries apart in the quality of life for its inhabitants.


  Ohrid has kept its ancient history intact for as you enter many of the churches, you feel like an archeologist who is discovering for the first time these revered artifacts. I was amazed that there were no “museum security guards” or anyone for that matter, cautioning you not to touch the holy relics! History says this is where St. John composed and recited the Apostle Creed (though many theologians today believe this prayer was formulated by many authors).


 One is truly humbled as you reach out and touch these ancient icons directly, imagining that their views of this lovely area are still exactly the same today as it was centuries ago.  Your spirit connects with this area and with the ancients of yesteryear.


Exploring the city and walking down the cobblestone streets, one is amazed to enjoy the uniqueness of the city and to explore it uninterrupted at your own pace.   There really are very few tourists that have discovered this oasis and I think that is what I value most about this enchanting and mystical town.


One cannot help but feel healthy while breathing in the fresh air and eating delicacies from the local orchards.  A wide variety of fresh fruits and vegetables are available year around.  Bees make delicious honey from multitudes of wild flowers, and there are homemade cheeses and wines.  Tradition is the each family makes their own family wine every autumn.  Fish ( Ohrid trout and belvica )and lamb are among the local delicacies.


Ohrid is truly a secret oasis where one can connect with a quality of life and spirit.  Perhaps you may wish to visit and explore the possibility as your retirement retreat!

Ohrid is one of only 28 sites that are part of UNESCO's World Heritage that are both Cultural and Natural sites.


Happy Travels!


June 27, 2023


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