Friday, 2 October 2015

Lin to Struga and Ohrid day ten 3/10/2015

Lin to Struga and Ohrid day ten 
15 km
Saturday 3rd October 
We cross the border into Macedonia... 
We farewell Rosa, Roland and little Jordan (pronounced Yordan) 
We planned to catch a furgon from Lin to the Qafthane - pass Macedonian border. But there doesn't seem to be one today, so it will be a taxi 
Border is "Ne kufi " 

Thane border crossing and entering Macedonia.
Currency - Macedonian Denar. $1 AUD= 38.8 MKD
Left Rosa's and went to the square to try and catch a bus to the border, they only go to Pogradec, so we organised a taxi. While we're waiting, I have a coffee macchiato, the bar is a great place for people watching! Lin town square is a busy place, with people taking their cows and donkeys off to pasture, or back home after gathering firewood. Such a cute donkey foal!



There is a bit of a line up of cars at the border crossing, we cheekily walk up to the front and hand over our passports to be checked, first at the Albanian checkpoint, the at Macedonia. It's a little cool up here! I have on my arm warmers and scarf.

There's no trouble finding the road to take down to Radozhda, theres a nice little sign it looks like mountain bikers use this path frequently, we use the GPS a couple of times through the meadows to check which path to take. There's also a couple of signs to Radozhda that help.
It's a gorgeous walk down hill! Forrest, meadows flowers, sheep...

Then the lovely Lake Ohrid again.
I wonder what differences there will be in Macedonia? Already there's more forest, some large chestnut trees...

There is a rubbish collection service! Not as much rubbish is visible. 

10:30 We stop off at Villa / cafe Radozhda towards the northern end of the village for a toilet stop for me- lovely clean western style toilet! Two coffees is one too many for me when I'm walking I think! We took out too many Leke, and we can't use it here, luckily I still have some euro to pay for the drinks! 2 euro for a large bottle of sparkling mineral water and a lemon soda.
The Ohrid lake is gorgeous!
The cave church of Radozhda up in the cliffs 


I get the key for the cave church from the restaurant 'two pearls'
View back to the lake and the village from the steep path up to the cave church. I'm glad Patrick didn't want to see the church so I could leave my pack behind! 

Frescos outside the church built into the rocky cliffs.


Inside the cave church, the frescos are a little worse for wear, centuries of candle and oil smoke is apparent.


Heading back down the steep steps to the village.
Another shrine along the path towards Struga.
It's a lovely walk along a quiet tar road from Radozhda, there are lots of vineyards and grape harvesting going on, vegetable plots by the lake.. We head through the gates of a monastery on the lake edge, the path goes through the monastery!

Then, we have a quite a tedious walk along the road ... Not too much to see in this section.
Beautiful red peppers drying on balconies

And a path through the reeds to Struga... Ho hum not the most exciting walking...

1:50 pm we arrive at Struga
Got a taxi, (would have been 13 km along the road ) to the old town of Ohrid, 10 euro fare to villa Mal Sveti Kliment. The taxi driver doesn't know where it is! After a phone call and some tricky driving along the very narrow cobble streets of the old town we find it! And it's a winner!
View to St Clements church (the lesser) from our room window.

Finally found it! Lovely! Had a great shower, with a shower cubicle.
Walked to the main square and took out 20,000 MKD 
$1 AUD = 38 MKD
Took some photos on the stone boat jetty, so many people, so cosmopolitan! Such a change from Lin.
The old town is charming

Walked on to St Sofia church 100 MKD entry fee, and I paid a guide another 100 MKD for a tour and little explanation. Unfortunately no photos allowed inside. But some lovely frescos in a beautifully proportioned church.

The remains of a much older, original church.

We eat next the the st Sofia church at "Damar" Restaurant.

I order 
Field mushrooms, hunter style 349 den
and Babina Tava - grandmothers pan 399 den 
Patrick
monastery pancake - 219 den
Roasted pork in honey sauce 599 den 
I have 1/2 l White House wine (nice, not at all sweet) 599 den
Patrick has a Macedonian beer - Ckohcko - Skopso beer, 90 den 
his verdict is very good! Better than Korca beer!
So amazing, the table near us is a couple with two young children, they live in Brisbane !  She's Australian, he's from Macedonia, Ohrid and they were married and had their honeymoon here!
Cheers- "nasdravia"
We finish off with a Raki! Different taste to Albanian Raki.

We'll have 7 days walking Macedonia, we decide to stay in Ohrid for two nights - Patrick simply MUST be able to watch the Australian rugby League grand final on Sunday Morning local time...

Accommodation
Ohrid, Mal Sveti Kliment House Metodi Patcev 10, Ohrid, 6000, Macedonia 39 Euro b&b 
Room offers views of the Church Mal Sv. Kliment.  Booked by booking.com $62 AUD per night B&B

Or stay at hotel along lake before Struga ...
Radozhda:  Vila Marij Blaz M 071616627  accommodation and food by the lake