Macedonia is quite an interesting country from the beautiful shores of Lake Ohrid to what is perhaps the most monumental city in the world, it's capital Skopje, there is always something interesting to see. This country has a vast and ancient history that dates back to the times of Ancient Greece. I traveled to Macedonia quite extensively in July of 2012, visiting Ohrid, the Lake Ohrid region and making my way up to Skopje.

Ancient Macedonia became a great kingdom north of Ancient Greece in the fourth century BCE. After the Peloponnesian War that brought Athens and Sparta into a great conflict, weakening both city-states Phillip II of Macedonia conquered Greece in 338BCE, bringing the Greek city-states under the control of Macedonia. Phillip II's son, Alexander the Great, considered by many to be the greatest military genius ever, fought with the Greeks, creating the largest empire in human history at that time, and starting the Hellenistic Age of Europe, Asia, and Africa. After the death of Alexander the Great, Macedonia slowly weakened. In 146BCE, the area was conquered by the Romans and made a province in the Roman Empire. After the fall of the Roman Empire, the area came under the control of the Byzantine Empire. In the 14th Century, the Ottoman Turks took control of Macedonia. It wasn't until the end of the first Balkan War in 1912 that Macedonia gained its independence from the Ottomans. Independence was short lived as the northern parts of Macedonia were incorporated into Yugoslavia in 1919, and the southern portions were held by Greece. After World War II, Yugoslavia became a communist state headed by General Tito. After the death of Tito, Yugoslavia began to come apart and in 1991, Macedonia followed other Yugoslav Republics and declared independence. Once it became an independent state, Macedonia applied for admission into the United Nations, but was blocked by Greece, who objected to its name. When the government changed its name to  "The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia" (FYROM), Greece dropped its objection and Macedonia became a member of the UN. Macedonia then applied for admission into the European Union and Greece also has blocked their admission because of their name and because they have a statue of Alexander the Great that they object to. Really! You can't make this stuff up!

  Ohrid 2012

Ohrid and Lake Ohrid 2012

Skopje 2012

Skopje 2012