Ohrid city, Macedonia – Jerusalem of the Balkans

Ohrid is a city in the southwestern part of the Republic of Macedonia with a population of 42,033 according to the 2002 census. Located on the northeast on Ohrid lake and hill Plaoshnik, at an altitude between 696 and 797 m. it covers an area of 1230 ha.

St. John Kaneo church in Ohrid

Ohrid city has moderate continental climate with an average annual air temperature of 11.2 ° C (52,16 F) and the average annual amount of precipitation of 690 mm.

With Skopje, Ohrid is connected via Kicevo, Tetovo, and Gostivar trough the highway M-4, and with Veles through Resen, Bitola, and Prilep (highway M-5). From the city of Ohrid to the border with Albania link two roads: one through Struga and border crossing Qafa San and the other along the eastern shore of Lake Ohrid and St. Naum border crossing.

Ohrid city panorama

Northwest of Ohrid on Struga Plain the international Ohrid Airport – St. Apostole Paul is located, which connects the city of Ohrid with many European cities.


Ohrid belongs to the group of the oldest cities in Macedonia. Even in ancient times, there existed an urban settlement. In the III century BC, it is mentioned under the name Lihnidos.

Ohrid traditional architecture

In the second half of the IX century as a result of the missionary activities of Clement and Naum of Ohrid, the city grew the most and had developed into the cultural, educational, and religious center of Macedonia. In the reign of Tsar Samuil, Ohrid was its capital and seat of the Archbishopric of Ohrid.

Tsar Samoil fortress in Ohrid

n the XI century, the city already had a complex form and consisted of two territorially connected parts: the fortress, which formed the inner city (acropolis), and the suburban external part.

At the beginning of Ottoman rule and around XVI century Ohrid was established as a chief religious center. Rapid development was experienced in the middle of the XIX century.

According to Ami Boue (1794-1881) the city had 6,000 residents with 250 stores. There were well-developed leather and other crafts as well as fishing. After the Balkan wars with the displacement of the Turks, the population decreased, and the city and functionally weakened.

St. Sofia (Sveta Sofija, Света Софија) church in Ohrid

Significant prosperity Ohrid experienced during the second half of the last century. Its population of 12,640 inhabitants in 1953 increased to 42,033 inhabitants in 2002. Of these, the Macedonians were 33,791 Albanians 2.959, Turkish 2.256, Vlachs 308 Serbs 331, and Bosniaks 69.

Ohrid city is the administrative center of the Municipality of Ohrid, which covers an area of 38,993 ha, with 29 settlements and 55,749 inhabitants.

Today Ohrid is the most developed and the most attractive tourist destination in the Republic of Macedonia, with many modern hotels, restaurants, camping beds, and private households.

The rich natural and cultural heritage enabled Ohrid to be declared a UNESCO City in 1980.
Lake Ohrid is considered a museum of living fossils. The cultural stratigraphy of the city is exceptionally rich in archaeological monuments such as Ohrid Fortress, Antique Theatre, graves, basilicas, and baptisteries filled with luxury and mosaic ensembles and decorative stone sculptures.

Plaoshnik and St. Clement's Church - Saint Pantelejmon


In Ohrid are located several important cultural and historical monuments such as “St. Sofia “cathedral temple of the Archbishopric of Ohrid, built and painted in the first decades of the XI century, then” St. Panteleimon on “Plaosnik with the tomb of St. Clement, monastery “St. Naum” with the tomb of St. Naum on the southern shore of Lake Ohrid, the churches: “St. Holy Mother of God Privlepta,” St. John Kaneo “,” Sv. Nicholas Bolnicki”,” St. Mary Bolnicka”,” St. Mary Celnica “,” Sv. Mary Zahumska “, cave churches” St. Erasmus ” and ” St. Stefan”, Bay of Bones, and others.

Holy Mary Perybleptos (St. Clement) – Ohrid, Macedonia


The city has several developed industries such as: electro, automotive, textile, plastic industry, and others.

Ohrid is a host of the Balkan Folklore Festival and International Festival “Ohrid Summer”.

Ancient Theater - Ohrid, Macedonia
Ohrid has several institutions like a National Museum, Museum of Slavic literacy, Icon Museum, House of Culture, Health Centre, High School, Secondary Technical School, and the Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality.



Ohrid Facts

  • Where is Ohrid: South West Macedonia
  • Area: 38,993 ha
  • Elevation: 696 -797 m (2283 – 2614 ft)
  • Population: 55,749 (2002)
  • Climate: Moderate continental
  • Dialing code: +389 46
  • Postal code: 6000
  • Time Zone: CET (UTC+1)   / Summer (DST):CST (UTC+2)
  • Celebration day: December 8th
  • Coordinates: 41°07′01″N 20°48′06″E

Municipality of Ohrid

  • Address: Dimitar Vlahov 57, 6000 Ohrid
  • Phone: +38946262492
  • Fax: +38946262545
  • e-mail:protocol@ohrid.gov.mk