On this digital nomad information to Ohrid, you’ll discover out all you could learn about distant working and residing within the attractive metropolis of Ohrid in North Macedonia. Being a digital nomad here’s a vastly rewarding expertise due to its location on lovely Lake Ohrid.
There are many cafes and eating places across the previous city and alongside the waterfront which might be excellent for working, and taking in some unbelievable views. I spent a few months working and residing as a digital nomad in North Macedonia final yr and spent most of my time based mostly in Ohrid.
Along with the superb cafes (that fortunately characteristic quick WiFi) there are a few co-working areas within the city when you’re in search of someplace with fewer distractions (it’s significantly straightforward to turn into distracted by the attractive mountain and lake views). It’s additionally a really low-cost place to reside with lodging and meals costing loads lower than elsewhere in Europe.
Ohrid is a metropolis positioned within the southwest of North Macedonia on the shores of Lake Ohrid. Though a metropolis in identify, it feels rather more like a city. It’s very small and has a inhabitants of simply 42,000 folks (making it one of many smallest cities in Europe).
It has a wealthy historical past together with time as a part of many various empires from Hellenic to Ottoman and later Yugoslavia. Proof of that is on show all over the place throughout the town from the Hellenic amphitheater to the mosques, monasteries, and church buildings dotted across the previous city and past.
There are many fantastic issues to do in Ohid from strolling alongside the boardwalk to sipping drinks on the lakeshore, swimming at one of many many seashores, or hitting one of many attractive mountain climbing trails. There are boat journeys that depart from the middle of city to close by locations of curiosity like Sveti Naum and the Bay of Bones.
Residing in Ohrid As a Digital Nomad
Residing in Ohrid as a digital nomad is straightforward as there’s wonderful infrastructure, quick and dependable WiFi (although 5G is but to be rolled out throughout the area), and loads of wonderful cafes the place you’ll be able to sit and work with a cup or two of the native Turkish-style espresso (or a Frapamochacino when you choose).
Coworking isn’t actually an enormous factor on this a part of the world but, nevertheless, there are two coworking areas in Ohrid so when you choose to work in a extra formal setting, that is definitely potential (see beneath for more information). Personally, I choose to work within the citys’ cafes, as outdoors of lunchtime and evenings, it’s straightforward to discover a quiet desk.
After your work day is completed, there’s loads to maintain you occupied as an Ohrid digital nomad. You may hit the seashores close by for a swim, hike, or jog alongside the clifftop paths, or sit again and luxuriate in fabulous Macedonian delicacies at one of many many eating places across the city.
The price of residing in Ohrid is relatively low in comparison with northern and western Europe, which is one among my predominant considerations when selecting someplace to reside and work remotely. As such it’s a improbable place to reside as going out to eat or drink is cheap. The identical might be stated for transport prices, museum entries, and different incidentals.
Is Ohrid Secure?
Ohrid (and North Macedonia usually) is extremely secure for guests. Crime ranges are low in comparison with cities in Western Europe or the USA. Corruption exists, however this isn’t one thing that impacts vacationers or folks coming to reside brief time period. Offered you’ve gotten the related visa (extra on that beneath) you don’t have motive to fret.
There aren’t any areas of Ohrid to keep away from usually, however it is best to apply widespread sense and keep away from venturing off at the hours of darkness into locations you’re not accustomed to. As soon as the solar has set, keep away from footpaths by the forest and as a substitute use the paths alongside the shore and thru the city.
Offered you utilize the identical precautions as with touring anyplace comparable to not flashing money and valuables, preserving doorways locked and never exploring after darkish, life in Ohrid is a hassle-free affair. Having lived right here for over two months, I by no means skilled any issues with crime or corruption.
Finest Locations to Dwell in Ohrid
Ohrid is a really small metropolis and all over the place is reachable on foot (although for people who don’t prefer to stroll too far, nowhere is greater than a ten-minute taxi journey away). The very best space to reside is within the previous city and across the lakeshore, and lodging right here is surprisingly inexpensive.
I lived within the previous city, a two-minute stroll from the principle buying road, and had a lakefront property with lake and mountain views from my balcony. I paid simply €300 Euros per thirty days for a big room with a kitchenette and personal rest room. Under, you’ll discover among the greatest areas to reside within the metropolis.
1. Varosh/Outdated City
The previous city stretches from the lakeshore up the hill to Samuil’s Fortress. It’s one of the charming previous cities in Europe and is lined with cobbled streets and winding alleyways that lead all the way down to the shore. You’ll discover the streets dotted with church buildings and small monasteries clinging to the hillside and overlooking the azure blue waters of the lake.
This space is filled with retailers, bars, cafes, and eating places serving native specialties from sarma (stuffed vine leaves) to stuffed peppers, freshly caught fish, and a few mouthwatering meat dishes. Costs are very cheap and you may take pleasure in an excellent meal for beneath €10 Euros.
That is additionally the place you’ll discover many of the greatest cafes to arrange and work from. Costs are cheap, the WiFi is free and quick, and you may take pleasure in beautiful views over the previous city, lake, and close by mountains whilst you beaver away. That is the place I lived and labored from, and the place I’ll return to when I’m subsequent in North Macedonia.
Heart is a neighborhood to the southeast of the previous city and might be reached inside a five-minute stroll. That is an space with a big promenade alongside the lake and plenty of lakefront eating places. There’s additionally a big collection of inns and locations to remain in Heart making it an ideal possibility for nomads and vacationers alike.
There are a few supermarkets and cafes right here and different facilities are inside strolling distance. This can be a excellent place for being a digital nomad in Ohrid because it’s central, with all you want on the doorstep; the beautiful views of the previous city, lake, and mountains are bonuses.
The Heart can be the right place to be for nightlife with among the greatest bars within the metropolis right here (such because the Octava Lounge Bar). It’s additionally an ideal spot for swimming. Though there aren’t any seashores on this a part of city, there are steps main into the crystal-clear waters for straightforward entry to the lake.
The Koshishta suburb is positioned on the opposite aspect of the hill from Samuil’s Fortress and is extra of a residential space. There are many flats right here, in addition to supermarkets, pharmacies, and different facilities. You received’t discover a lot in the way in which of cafes and eating places in Koshishta, however the previous city continues to be inside strolling distance.
This space is barely cheaper to remain in than the previous city and Heart however continues to be inside straightforward attain of the lake and all of the sights, bars, and eating places on the town; making it a wonderful possibility for digital nomads in Ohrid.
Voska is a small neighborhood adjoining Koshishta, however this space has the added bonus of getting its personal seashore. In the summertime there are seashore events right here which may get fairly wild, so when you’re in search of a quiet suburb, that is probably a spot to keep away from.
There are many lodging choices right here from resort rooms to flats and visitor homes. There are a few small supermarkets, however you’ll should stroll into city which takes round ten minutes if you’d like something aside from primary provides.
5. seventh November
The neighborhood often known as seventh November is positioned within the north of the town near the principle Ohrid bus station (go right here for buses to Bitola, not Skopje). It’s round a thirty-minute stroll from the middle and previous city or 5 minutes in a taxi. This can be a quiet, residential space with plenty of Soviet-style condo buildings.
You’ll discover Ohrid’s greatest co-working area right here at CoWorkOhrid, so when you choose to work in a extra formal setting relatively than in cafes or your individual condo, it is a good possibility. Right here, you’ll discover a big grocery store, a number of comfort shops, a bakery, and different facilities so it’s a handy place to remain, regardless of it not being tremendous central.
Learn how to Discover Lodging in Ohrid
There’s no secret to discovering good lodging in Ohrid and the variety of locations on provide across the city signifies that costs are nonetheless comparatively low. Under are 3 ways to discover a good place to remain in Ohrid:
2. Reserving.com. This standard resort web site is one other nice strategy to discover lodging in Ohrid.
3. Hostelworld. On my first go to to Ohrid in 2019 I stayed on the Sunny Lake Hostel which I discovered by Hostelworld.
Value of Residing for a Digital Nomad in Ohrid
Residing as a digital nomad in Ohrid might be very low-cost in comparison with residing in lots of different international locations world wide. Lodging, meals, and even going out prices are all about as inexpensive because it’s potential to search out in Europe, together with locations like Albania and Bulgaria.
Eating places and Groceries
Ohrid has plenty of wonderful eateries starting from cheapish quick meals and pizza locations to extra upmarket eating places alongside the waterfront and across the previous city. My favourite place for an inexpensive meal is Leonardo Pizzaria. They make a wonderful hen cutlet in cream and mushroom sauce for 350 MKD (€5.70 Euros). Pizzas price between 350 and 700 (€5.70-€11.40 Euros).
Straight reverse Leonardo is Restaurant Antico, a conventional Macedonian restaurant that serves up rustic dishes of sarma, stuffed peppers, grilled fish, and extra. I paid beneath €10 Euros for a predominant and glass of the do-it-yourself home wine (which was scrumptious).
Increased-end eating places down on the lakeshore are predictably dearer however the high quality doesn’t at all times match the value. Resatuarnat Cun is a well-liked spot on the water’s edge. The meals is nice, however the portion sizes are a bit of stingy and the wine is overpriced. Count on to pay €20-€30 Euros for a meal and wine.
There are many supermarkets within the city heart (I used Prime and Ramstore) the place on a regular basis cooking objects are low-cost compared to again house (and to Armenia the place I’ve been residing for the final 4 months).
Being a digital nomad in Ohrid is nice as a result of lodging prices are nonetheless low. I paid simply €300 Euros per thirty days for my massive, self-contained room overlooking the lake (you’d pay virtually double for one thing comparable in close by Croatia or Greece).
In the event you’re in search of a primary room in shared lodging you’ll be able to anticipate to pay beneath €200 Euros per thirty days. In the event you’d relatively have a complete condo to your self then anticipate to pay between €400 and €600 Euros a month for a one or two-bedroom place with a central or lakeside location.
Transportation Prices in Ohrid
All the things there may be to see in Ohrid is well reachable on foot. Close by sights and locations of curiosity comparable to Sveti Naum and the Bay of Bones might be reached by boat, bus, and taxi, with buses (or relatively marshrutkas – minibusses with mounted routes), and also you received’t pay greater than a few Euros per journey.
There are day by day buses to different cities and cities round North Macedonia like Bitola and Skopje, and these additionally provide a really low-cost approach of getting across the nation. Count on to pay round €12 to €15 Euros for the bus to Skopje (you’ll be able to ebook on-line with Get by Bus), and can purchase tickets on the bus station for Bitola.
Taxis are cheap however at all times ensure to agree on the fare first to keep away from any disagreeable surprises. I paid 300 MKD (€4.90 Euros) for a taxi for the 9.5 miles (15 km) from Struga to Ohrid. Sadly, there aren’t at present any ride-sharing apps like Uber in Nort Macedonia.
SIM Playing cards and Knowledge
Though my UK information plan labored in Croatia as a result of it’s EU, as North Macedonia isn’t, I had to purchase a SIM card to hold on working remotely (although in practicality, with wonderful WiFi in my condo and in any respect the cafes, you may get away without having one if circumstances permit).
There are a number of telecom networks in North Macedonia together with A1, Lycamobile, Makadonski Telecom, and T-Cell. A1 has the greatest protection in Ohrid so I like to recommend going with them. You should buy a SIM at any cell phone store, at airports, and at many comfort shops, in addition to on-line.
You don’t want any ID to buy a SIM in North Macedonia. A1 has a variety of pricing choices and among the best offers is the 10GB month-to-month bundle for 299 MKD (€4.85 Euros). Click on right here to search out out extra.
Cash Saving Suggestions for Ohrid
- Meals is affordable in supermarkets (and even cheaper on the markets) so cook dinner meals at house.
- Consuming and ingesting at eating places on the lakeshore is dearer than at inland institutions.
- Don’t order wine within the eating places as they mark it up closely (though it’s domestically made).
- Purchase meals and wine from the grocery store for a picnic on the seashore.
- E-book boat excursions on-line upfront as its cheaper than paying on the dock.
- Use Airbnb for long-term lodging.
Coworking Areas in Ohrid and WiFi Velocity
On every go to to Ohrid, and all through my time residing there, I used to be impressed by the quick WiFi which enabled me to work with out situation, browse the online, and stream movies on YouTube. I didn’t expertise any outages in my complete time within the metropolis which is uncommon when on the street.
The common obtain velocity in Ohrid is 28.86 MBpS with a mean add velocity of 26.62 MBpS and a latency of 16. Click on right here for more information and up-to-date speeds.
Though working remotely in Ohrid is a wonderful possibility due to quick WiFI, nice cafes, and low-cost residing prices, there isn’t a big co-working scene right here. There are solely two co-working areas within the metropolis, and neither is especially central.
- CoWorkOhrid: That is positively one of the best co-working area within the metropolis (they provide free espresso too!) and is standard with younger distant employees, digital nomads, and entrepreneurs. 799 MKD (€12.95 Euros) per day or 3,099 MKD (€50.25 Euros) per week. Click on right here for instructions.
- Kasarna Hub: This can be a group area for freelancers, distant employees, and different entrepreneurs that’s positioned in an previous military barracks within the north of the town. 500 MKD (€8 Euros) per day or 2,000 MKD (€32 Euros) per week. Click on right here for instructions.
Actions and Issues To Do in Lake Ohrid
Among the best issues about life in Ohrid is that there’s a lot to see and do. From exploring the attractive previous city to eating on the waterfront, swimming, boating, and mountain climbing, there’s loads to maintain digital nomads entertained throughout downtime in Ohrid.
1. Discover the Outdated City
Ohrid has one of many most charming previous cities I’ve visited with plenty of slender lanes to discover and wooded footpaths that lead all the way down to the lake. In the event you’re a historical past lover like me then you definately’re in for an actual deal with. See the Hellenic (pre-Roman) amphitheater that’s been remarkably properly preserved.
Discover picturesque monasteries and Japanese Orthodox church buildings, browse boutique retailers promoting souvenirs and Macedonian handicrafts (I purchased a few good work of the city and lake to take house), and chill out at one of many many streetside cafes, bars, or eating places.
From the previous city, there are paths and trails as much as Samuil’s Fortress (see beneath) and all the way down to the lake. I strolled across the previous city and all the way down to the lake each day whereas residing on Lake Ohrid. Among the best methods to expertise the previous city and find out about its fascinating historical past is to take a tour. Click on right here to search out out extra.
2. Stroll to the Church of St. John the Theologian
The Church of St John the Theologian is among the most iconic pictures of North Macedonia and seeing this attractive monastery above the lake impressed me to go to for the primary time again in 2019 (and it completely lived as much as expectations).
The church dates again to the thirteenth Century and is made from the red-brick and terracotta roofing typical of the area. The church sits on a promontory overlooking the lake with a backdrop of pine forest. It’s one of the serene spots in Ohrid and is the right place to take a seat and collect your ideas.
St John’s is positioned at Kaneo which is a ten to fifteen-minute stroll from the previous city both alongside the wood boardwalk above the lake or by the forest. There are a few small (and stony) seashores at Kaneo in addition to some beachside bars and eating places, so it is a excellent place to spend a day.
3. Hike as much as Samuil’s Fortress
Samuil’s Fortress (additionally referred to as Samuel’s Fortress) is an eleventh Century fort on the prime of the city and named after Tsar Samuel of Bulgaria (Ohrid was as soon as the capital of the primary Bulgarian Empire). The fortress underwent huge restoration work in 2003 which changed lots of the partitions that had fallen into disrepair.
The views from the Samuil’s Fortress are phenomenal and you may see all the way in which throughout the lake to Albania with a backdrop of mountains. You may climb the restored partitions and battlements for panoramic views of all the previous city and the lake past. It’s a wonderful place for photographers.
The fortress is a brief ten minutes from the previous city and lots of roads and paths result in the highest – keep in mind it’s all uphill however there are fortuitously loads of locations to cease for a relaxation and take within the views. The fortress is open day by day from 10 am to 4 pm and prices 125 MKD (€2 Euros) to enter.
4. Have a Meal on the Lakeshore
Some of the nice issues to do in Ohrid is to take pleasure in a meal or a glass of wine at one of many many bars and eating places on the lakeshore. Certainly one of my favorites is the Noa Lounge Bar which sits on a wood platform above the lake providing beautiful views of Kaneo and St John the Theologian.
A lot of the eating places are open for breakfast and morning espresso and that is one thing I took benefit of just about day by day (even in late October it was heat sufficient to take a seat outdoors). Different wonderful choices embody Liquid, Alexandrija, and Kak Kanevche at close by Kaneo.
Simply take a stroll anyplace from Heart all the way in which to Kaneo and also you’ll go loads of wonderful choices for consuming and ingesting. Whether or not you fancy a espresso, a beer, a glass of wine, or a full meal, there are lots of nice locations to select from, all with improbable views out throughout the lake.
5. Take a Boat Journey
You may’t come to Ohrid and never spend trip on the water. Taking a ship journey is a good way to get a special vantage level of the city and see sights like St John the Theologian and Samuil’s Fortress from a special angle. There are additionally day by day boat journeys to close by sights just like the must-visit Bay of Bones.
You’ll see plenty of folks promoting boat journeys down on the water’s edge and across the dock. There’s a day by day ferry service to Sveti Naum on a big boat, or you’ll be able to go for a smaller speedboat (often with drinks included and extra stops to smaller bays).
There’s a variety of excursions you’ll be able to ebook on-line like this wonderful cruise across the previous city the place you’ll get to see the Church of Saint Sophia, the Church of Saint Clement, St John the Theologian the Caves of Love, and much more, all from the consolation of a non-public vessel with your individual captain. Click on right here to ebook.
Climate in Ohrid
The very best time to go to Ohrid is within the shoulder seasons of spring and autumn. On my first go to, I used to be there in April and had heat, sunny days each day. On my current return, I used to be there in September and October and the climate was attractive and nonetheless heat sufficient for a swim.
Summer time is lengthy and sizzling, and Ohrid can get fairly busy with vacationers throughout this time, so it’s greatest averted if you’d like relative peace and quiet for work. Winter runs from November to March and that is the coldest interval with temperatures between 27 and 41 levels Fahrenheit.
Professionals and Cons of Residing in Ohrid
As with anyplace on the earth, there are each execs and cons of residing in Ohrid:
Professionals of Residing in Ohrid
- Stunning – Ohrid is among the most charming cities in Europe. It’s nonetheless comparatively off the overwhelmed path so doesn’t get too crowded, there’s tons to see and do, and sitting in one of many lakeside cafes is one among life’s easy pleasures.
- A lot of cafes – If like me you prefer to discover a good cafe to work in with quick WiFi, good espresso, and engaging snacks, then you definately received’t should look far in any respect for one in Ohrid.
- Low cost – Costs are nonetheless loads cheaper than the remainder of Europe right here which makes being a digital nomad in Ohrid a wonderful possibility. Lodging, meals, and transport are all very inexpensive.
- Good WiFi – I’ve at all times discovered the WiFi all over the place in Ohrid to be very quick with no interruptions. That is true of the cafes, hostels, and inns.
- Straightforward to discover close by locations – Ohrid makes an ideal base for exploring close by locations of curiosity from the Bronze Age village on the lake on the Bay of Bones to the Roman ruins at Heraclea Lyncestis.
Cons of Residing in Ohrid
- English isn’t extensively spoken – When residing as a digital nomad in Macedonia you’ll discover they use the Cyrillic script relatively than Roman, and most of the people don’t communicate English (apart from some youthful generations).
- It may be crowded in summer season – In summer season specifically, Ohrid can turn into busy and also you’ll should struggle for area in town’s small seashores. Decide as a substitute for autumn which is a improbable time to go to.
- Public transport isn’t nice – Getting round North Macedonia isn’t as straightforward as elsewhere in Europe. Most individuals use marshrutkas however there aren’t timetables and it may be tough to plan issues utilizing public transport alone.
Digital Nomad Visa for Ohrid
On the time of writing (Could 2023) North Macedonia doesn’t have a digital nomad visa, although they’ve been speaking about implementing one since 2021. As a British passport holder, I’m in a position to keep in North Macedonia visa-free for as much as 90 days. This is similar for all EU residents, in addition to these from Canada and the USA.
As many nationalities can keep for as much as three months with no visa, North Macedonia is a improbable place for digital nomads in search of a brief to medium-term keep. In the event you want to keep longer (which is totally believable after spending time in lovely Ohrid), you’ll want to speak to your nearest Macedonian embassy about long-term stays.
Now you already know all about tips on how to be a digital nomad in Ohrid, I extremely advocate this unbelievable metropolis as a spot to work remotely for a couple of months. I liked each minute of residing right here and look ahead to returning very quickly. With quick WiFi, plentiful cafes, trendy co-working areas, and much to see and do, that is the right place to reside your greatest nomad life in lovely environment.