The Macedonian government undertook an extensive project to redevelop Skopje in order to boost their national identity and bolster tourism. The government drew inspiration from the great civilizations from the past and the project is meant to give the city an impressive and historic appearance. This project is called Skopje 2014 and it involves a multitude of statues.
In our opinion, it was a little odd to see this many statues in one city and especially the replicas from statues around the world. It just didn't feel like they had their own identity even though this is what they were trying to achieve.
In the center of the Balkan Peninsula lies Skopje, the capital of the Republic of Macedonia. Macedonia over its time has experienced Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman ruling. Connecting the Ottoman Old Bazaar and the contemporary Macedonia Square is a 15th century stone bridge.
While we were walking towards the Skopje Fortress we went through the Old Bazaar. One of the streets in the Old Bazaar was completely dedicated to jewellery, we thought this was quite strange but intriguing at the same time. The stores were a mixture of actual jewellery being sold but also the boxes that those jewels would be put into once purchased or the mannequins that would model the jewellery.
The Skopje Fortress that we hiked up to see is commonly known as Kale and it overlooks the Vardar River and has defended the city for centuries.