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TOURISM AND CULTURE

TOURISM IN PELAGONIA

Pelagonia, with its natural and anthropogenic wealth, has a huge potential for development of adventurous (active) tourism, which includes a clean environment, familiarization with authentic local tradition and culture or physical activity. According to the official data of the State Statistical Office of the Republic of Macedonia, in 2015, the region visited just over 62,000 tourists, of which about 41,000 were domestic and 21,000 foreign. The average length of stay for tourists is 2.5 nights, or about 150,000 overnight stays during the year. The region has officially registered 3,386 rooms and about 10,000 beds. These figures do not include the rooms and beds of accommodation facilities with a capacity of less than 20 beds, but according to the data of the local governments that are competent for categorization and records of this type of tourist facilities, their number would increase the number of rooms and beds in the region for several dozen / a hundred.

The main features of Pelagonija's tourism product are clean environment, urban environments with millennial history, active villages, rich cultural heritage, cultural and sporting events and certainly authentic gastronomy. In the region, the main tourist destinations are the cities of Bitola, Prilep, Krusevo, Resen with their environs, the Prespa Prespa Lake with the Prespa Lake and the National Parks Pelister and Galicica. Other factors of the tourist product worth mentioning are: the Pelister Ecchias, the Golem Grad Island, the archeological site Heraclea, the city architecture of Bitola, the city of Krushevo, the fortress of Markovi Kuli in Prilep, the ancient city of Stibera near the village. Chepigovo, the mound of the Undefeated in Prilep, the churches and monasteries "St. Giorgi "in Kurbinovo," Transfiguration "in Zrze," Treskavec "and" Arkhangel Mihail "near Prilep," St. Jovan Preteča "in Demir Hisar," St. Anne "and" St. Five "in Malovishta. The most important cultural events that have a significant role in attracting domestic and foreign tourists are: Manaki Brothers Film Festival Festival in Bitola, "Beer Fest" and carnival "Prochka" in Prilep, "Actor of Europe" and "Prespanski jabolkober" in Resen, Folk Songs and Instruments Festival "Pece Atanasoski" in Dolneni and Mali Bitolski Montmartre.

The Pelagonia region has a number of active villages that have a specific tourist offer: Brajcino, Ljubojno, Dolno Dupeni, Slivnica, Pretor, Stenje, Otesevo, Dihovo, Maloviste, Nizhepole, Slepce, Krani, Magarevo, Staravina. Guests in these villages can enjoy walks in untouched nature, authentic food, fruit harvesting, try out gardening, dairy and honey production techniques and in the coastal villages during the spring and summer months to enjoy the well-arranged beaches and to bathe in the waters of Prespa Lake.

The Pelagonia region continuously strengthens its offer of sports and tourism events that attract domestic and foreign professional athletes and recreational players. Every year, Pelagonia organizes national and world championships in gaming and paragliding, racing and racing competitions, jeep tours, mountain bike racing, cycling, alpinism and sport climbing. In the vicinity of NP Pelister and Krushevo there are ski centers Nizhepolje, Kopanki and Stanich which every winter season provide the opportunity for alpine skiing, turreting and cocking. For lovers of sports hunting in Pelagonija there are a total of 49 hunting grounds, 17 of which are for big game and 32 for small game.

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