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Best Hiking Trails in North Macedonia

Overview

This small mountainous country north of Greece was part of the former Yugoslavia until 1991.  The country very recently changed its name from Macedonia to North Macedonia to differentiate itself from the Greek region of Macedonia to the south.  There are beautiful mountains to explore in the western part of the country, namely the Šar (or Shar or Sharr) Mountains and other ranges throughout the country.  Popular hikes include Mount Korab, Pelister Peak, Mount Medenica, and Mount Galicica. The best months to hike in North Macedonia are June to September. Read on for more information on where and when to hike in North Macedonia. 

Capital: Skopje

When To Hike in North Macedonia?

June – September 
May; October
November – April: Too cold, snowy

Climate: Continental climate – because there’s no outlet to the sea, the summers are hotter and the winters are colder; the valleys (where Skopje is located) are sweltering in summer, but for the mountainous areas, June – September are best months

 

North Macedonia Monthly Weather

Accessibility of Hiking

Easy – Medium: There are established trails but you need to go with a guide in some places; there’s a mountain hut system in place

Transportation required: Hiring a driver; some places accessible by public transit

Where to stay in North Macedonia for hiking:

  • Skopje
  • Bitola
  • Galicica

Most popular hikes in North Macedonia

The western part of the country is where the majority of the mountainous areas are. There are three national parks. Highest Mountain: Mount Korab (2764 m), in Mavrovo National Park. The map shows the main areas to hike.

Filter out hiking places of North Macedonia by month

Click on the red map pointers to see more info.

Around Skopje

  • Mountains around here
  • Mount Vodno
  • Canyon Matka

Solunska Glava

  • Mountain peak; not in a national park

Galičica National Park

  • Lake Ohrid – a huge draw 
  • Magaro peak (2254 m)

Mavrovo National Park

Pelister National Park

Long Distance Trails of North Macedonia

  • High Scardus Trail – 495 km trail through Albania, Kosovo and North Macedonia – High Scardus Trail
  • Via Dinarica – 2000 km trail through the whole Western Balkans and eight countries (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia, Slovenia) – Via Dinarica
  • Via Egnatia – Via Egnatia Hiking Trail

North Macedonia's Walking & Hiking Resources

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North Macedonia Hiking Books: 

 

North Macedonia Hiking Associations:

  • Macedonian Mountaineering Sports Federation  – ФПСМ  – there are approximately 70 local hiking clubs under this umbrella; useful link

 

Best Hiking Trails in North Macedonia:

You can find more details on hiking these trails from guidebooks, trail maps/apps, websites, and tourist offices:

  • Mount Korab
  • Magaro Peak
  • Solunska Glava
  • Mount Vodno
  • Mount Medenica
  • Mount Ljuboten
  • Skopska Crna Gora
  • Pelister Peak
  • Mount Galicica

Easy Hiking Trails in North Macedonia:

  • Matka Canyon
  • Eye of Pelister

 

North Macedonia Hiking Websites:

 

North Macedonia Weather Website: 

  • National Hydrometeorological Service Republic of Macedonia – УХМР 

 

North Macedonia Official Tourism Site:  

 

North Macedonia Hiking Apps: 

 

North Macedonia Hiking & Road Maps: 

What Else To Do

  • Castles
  • Mother Teresa monument

Other Important Points

  • Beware of political tensions between NM and neighbouring countries (Greece, Albania)
  • Beware of dogs (they’re usually protecting the flocks of sheep/goat and can be quite threatening)