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Skopje was an Ottoman city for 5 centuries, which is evident in its magnificent architecture and sumptuous cuisine. It is divided by the River Vardar into the predominantly Muslim half north of the river, to the mostly Christian Orthodox side to the south of the river. There has been a large influx of foreigners since the NATO intervention into Kosovo, which adds to the cosmopolitan allure of the city. Skopje is a lively, young city with lots of fun loving folk who like to be out, whether it's at cafés, bars and clubs socializing with friends, or in active outdoor pursuits. Skopje has numerous dance clubs for a small city, which speaks to its spirit and energy. There are also a wide range of outdoor activities, from horse riding to rock climbing to keep every type of visitor entertained.
Skopje has blossomed into a thriving, stimulating city to explore, defining itself as an exciting tourist destination. Addresses in Skopje can be confusing. Often only street names are listed as building numbers. If a building number does exist, it is listed after the street name.
Macedonia is heavily influenced by European cuisine, particularly Greek and Italian because of its proximity to these two countries. A wide variety of local Macedonian specialties are available, as well as some surprises such as Indian and Chinese fare. Most menus appear both in Macedonian and English.
Spending time in cafés is a national pastime in Macedonia, which is evident from the plentiful variety of cafés in Skopje. From sophisticated, trendy cafés, to cosy, family-run establishments, where one goes to relax—there is something to meet your every whim.
There is a wide variety of bars in Skopje, including bars with live jazz, traditional music, and sophisticated spots to suit every taste and mood. Late night cafés serve liquor as well as coffee. There is a pulsing nightlife scene in Skopje with a mix of international people. Heaps of live music and DJ venues with dancing ensure an exciting visit. There are also many bars and clubs located along Kej 13 Noemvri.
Large, modern Western style shopping centres are becoming very popular in Skopje. The variety of local stores makes the malls more interesting than the typical shopping centres and they all worth a look. Apart from the malls, you can also find many traditional market places as well as independent stores, which specialize in souvenirs, furniture and daily use products.
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