September 15: Skopje, Macedonia

Skopje, Macedonia is the capital of the Republic of Macedonia and is situated on the Vardar River in the center of the Balkan Peninsula. Over time it has experienced Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman rule. The 15th-century Stone Bridge connects the Ottoman Old Bazaar (Čaršija) on the Vardar River‘s north bank with contemporary Macedonia Square to the south. The Skopje (Kale) Fortress overlooking the river has defended the city for centuries.

The flight into the city was picturesque with mountains careening into a valley on either side of the city. From the city center one can see the foothills rising in the background. Today's time spent in "downtown" was short, but tomorrow promised more exploration and cultural intake.

The hotel is located a block from the main fountain which also serves as the main meeting place for all who visit. While the square is large, the fountain dwarfs the plaza with its bronze statue of the Warrior on a Horse. Surrounding the square are numerous other statues almost saluting the Warrior.

A quick dinner on the square and off to better adjust to the time zone!

"Warrior on a Horse" at Macedonia Square -- Alexander the Great

One of Many Statues on the Plaza

King Guarding His Warrior

Queen Guarding from the Other Side!

 

Statue of Swimmers in Vardar River

Entrance to the Stone Bridge