August 3, 2010
Ten top towns in Europe you’ve never heard of `
Done Venice, Paris and London? Ticked off Prague, Budapest, Berlin and Dubrovnik? It may be time to delve a little deeper on your next European adventure. Here are some of the best under-the-radar towns and cities you should know about, writes David Whitley.
Lake Ohrid is sandwiched between Macedonia and Albania, almost forming a bowl in the middle of surrounding mountains. The lake is surrounded by pretty holiday villages and monasteries (noticeably more so on the Macedonian side than the Albanian) but the major town of Ohrid itself is the real treat.
It has always been a popular resort among eastern Europeans but the rest of the world is just cottoning on. It’d be easy enough to just enjoy the boat trips and beaches but head up into the forests and along the cliff tops and you find numerous photogenic forts and churches.
Ohrid is also fairly lively in the evening, as twilight promenades morph into a cafe-terrace eating and drinking culture where the volume inevitably ramps up.
Oh yes, and it is dirt cheap as well – don’t expect to pay much more than $2 for a beer.
Local secret The beaches closest to Ohrid can get crowded – many locals prefer to head to those outside the Sveti Naum monastery on the south-western side of the lake, just across the Albanian border. It’s quieter and has fabulous views of the town across the lake.
More information ohrid.com.mk.