Bitola Travel Guide


Bitola is a settlement that the Turks have called a monastery since the Ottoman period . Bitola, Macedonia ‘s second largest city, has a calmer and more peaceful appearance compared to Macedonia’s capital, Skopje . It is worth seeing with its rich historical past as well as natural beauties. It is a cute city worth a day trip from Ohrid .

Bitola, also known as the diplomacy city of the Balkans, was considered one of the strategically important centers of the Balkans, where many European countries opened diplomatic representations since the end of the 1800s. Many of the representative offices opened in those years still continue to serve in the same buildings. It seemed to me as one of the most livable places in the Balkans.
I passed through Thessaloniki to the city of Manastir, which is located 16 km from the Greek border . The distance between Thessaloniki and Monastery takes approximately 2.5-3 hours. I visited the city for the first time in winter and stayed for 1 night and visited the important places. Years later, I made my second visit to the city of Manastir from Ohrid , the beautiful city of Macedonia.

If you are going to make a Balkan tour from the Ipsala Border Gate by car , it is one of the cities I recommend you stop by. The city, where Turks lived intensely for centuries, was called Monastery in the Ottoman Period. After the Thessaloniki tour, you can proceed to the Monastery. If you stay in the city for 1 full day, you will have the opportunity to visit many places easily.
Bitola, which was called a monastery during the rule of the Ottoman Empire, is located in the southwest of Macedonia. The city, next to Pelister National Park, is also very close to the northwest border of Greece.

Bitola is a small and beautiful city in Macedonia. It is located with reasonable transport links to more distant destinations such as Greece, Albania and Bulgaria, among other places in Macedonia. The city, which remained in the Lyncestis region in the Neolithic Age, was named Heraclea Lyncestis by the King of Macedonia in the middle of the 4th century BC, before enduring the Roman Empire.

It is one of the lucky cities located on the Via Egnatia, an ancient trade route that connected the Adriatic and the Aegean centuries ago. Located on the Dragor River, the city was part of the Slavic Empires from the mid-8th century to the early 14th century, then part of the Byzantine Empire.

When it was taken by the Ottomans, it turned into a thriving cosmopolitan city with both commercial and military importance. There were 60 mosques in the city, 12 of which are still standing. Its Old Bazaar was buzzing with more than two thousand merchants selling goods from places as far away as Paris and Leipzig , and this attracted many future intellectuals.

Among them are Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, who studied at the Manastır Military Academy, and many names who contributed greatly to the establishment of the Turkish Republic. Once upon a time, Bitola was the second largest city of the Ottoman Empire on the European side. European consuls brought European culture such as fashion, food, architecture and traditions that left a lasting impression on Bitola.

The city, which was taken by the Serbs in the Balkan Wars (1912-13), was thus cut off from 500 years of Muslim history. II. The city, which lost its Jewish community in World War II, lost its economic and commercial power. After the war, the Monastery became an important Macedonian center as it had good transport links with Skopje and Greece.

Today, the Monastery, whose population is approaching 100 thousand, has a city center where life continues on its own, far away from the problems associated with city life such as crowds, chaos, traffic and stress.

Bitola has a different meaning and significance for the Turks. The Manastır Military High School, where Gazi Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the Founder of the Republic of Turkey, received his military high school education, is in this city. Macedonian is spoken in the city, the official language of Macedonia. Macedonian currency Macedonian Denar. Bitola is 1 hour behind Turkey.

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