samuil fortress, Ohrid

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    by Vanity666
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    Samuel's Fortress
    by Roadquill
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    by Roadquill
  • Askla's Profile Photo

    Tsar Samuli's fortress.

    by Askla Updated May 4, 2013

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    Tsar Samuli's fortress dates from the 10th century, but several findings shows that the area has been inhabited and used as a stronghold much earlier. The tomb from the 5th century BOT found inside the walls prove that. (See my tip on the National Museum for a bit more info.) The inside of the fortress doesn't have very much to show a visitor today, however, it's in a bit poor condition. But you can see that the walls are up to about 2 m thick.

    Working hours: 09.00 - 18.00, closed Monday.
    Entrance fee 30 denar.

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    The fortifications.

    by Askla Updated Apr 20, 2013
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    Ohrid came under Turkish leadership of sultan Beyazit I in 1395. Up til then the town consisted just of what was inside the 3 km long walls. There were only two gates into town, called the Upper and the Lower Gate. The latter is quite difficult to see but it is located not very far from the lake shore. The Upper Gate is still imposing and nowadays used for the traffic.

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    You really shouldn't miss it.

    by planxty Updated Feb 1, 2013
    Samoil,s Fortress, Ohrid, Macedonia.
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    When I titled this tip "You really shouldn't miss it" I actually meant it in both senses of the phrase. Physically, you shouldn't miss it as it completely dominates the city sat atop the large mount to the West of town and you shouldn't miss it as it is a wonderful place to visit with superb views over the city and the lake. I refer, of course, to Samuil's (Samoil's) Fortress built by the eponymous ruler who pronounced himself Tsar of the Bulgarians who held sway here at the time. Recent archaeology does suggest that it may have been built on the remains of a former defensive settlement built by Phillip the Second of Macedon, famous father of Alexander the Great.

    Impressive as it is as a structure, there is not actually much to see here other than the views. I am told by my friends that the views fromm the battlements are even better than from the gate but my occasional vertigo had decided to come out to play that day and precluded me going up. The hardier members of our group are seen in the third photo.

    I can imagine it being a pretty warm slog up here in the height of summer but certainly worth it.

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    Samuil's Fortress

    by SWFC_Fan Written May 19, 2012

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    Samuil's Fortress, Ohrid, Macedonia
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    Samuil's Fortress stands on top of a hill overlooking Ohrid's old town and the beautiful Lake Ohrid.

    It dates back to the 10th Century, but today there is little to see other than the fortress walls. My girlfriend and I visited Samuil's Fortress in March 2012 and I would recommend others to do likewise; if not for the fortress itself, then for the amazing views that can be enjoyed from on top of the walls.

    Before climbing up the hill to visit, bear in mind that Samuil's Fortress is closed on Mondays – we had already trekked up to the town's Upper Gate and walked up to the fortress before we realised! All was not lost though; we visited the nearby Roman amphitheatre while we were in the area and continued our walk down through the shaded forests to the spectacularly perched Sveti Jovan Kaneo Monastery. We returned to visit the fortress later in the week. It was open Tuesday to Sunday from 9am until 4:30pm in March 2012; I believe it stays open later in the summer months (our guidebook suggested 6pm).

    There is a small charge to enter the fortress: 30 MKD / £0.40 for foreigners, 20 MKD for domestics and 10 MKD for concessions. Tickets are purchased from a kiosk just inside the entrance. You can also buy postcards and other souvenirs from there, as well as from a number of stalls that had set up just outside the fortress. They can't have done much business on the day we visited; we were the only visitors for the majority of the time we spent there.

    You are able to climb the steep steps up to the top of the walls and then to walk along an arc-shaped section of the walls that overlook the town and lake. The views that have lived longest in my memory are the ones towards Sveti Kliment and Pantelejmon Monastery against a backdrop of Lake Ohrid and over the city with the snow-capped mountains in the distance.

    The central areas of the fortress appeared to be undergoing excavation/renovation.

    It is worth noting that if you suffer from mobility problems (or just don't fancy a steep uphill walk!), it is possible to reach Samuil's Fortress by taxi. I expect the fare from the centre of town would be no more than 50 – 100 MKD.

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    Tsar Samoil´s Fortress, Ohrid

    by Pijlmans Updated Jan 20, 2012

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    Tsar Samoil��s Fortress
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    Tsar Samoil´s Fortress dates from the the end of the 10th century, but a fortress has been standing on top of Ohrid hill since at least the 3rd century BC or even earlier. Although most of the walls are still standing, most of the inside of the fortress is destroyed. But surely worth a visit!

    When I visited in 2007, an admission fee had to be paid to enter the fortress, i believe it was 50 Denars, less than 1 euro.

    Tsar Samoil´s Fortress is part of a tour described on my Ohrid page, see link below.

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  • johngayton's Profile Photo

    Impressive Structure And Great Views.

    by johngayton Written Sep 29, 2011

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    Imposing Presence Overlooking The Old City
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    Literally towering over the city is the impressive fortress of Tsar Samuel (Samuil) on top of the hill. This was constructed in the late 10th/early 11th centuries by the eponymous ruler at a time when Ohrid was briefly the capital of what is commonly known as the First Bulgarian Empire (a subject of much controversy in Macedonia).

    Controversies aside the fortress was constructed as a defence for the city against the Byzantines who gained the ascendancy in the struggle for dominance of the Balkans during the latter part of Samuel's tsardom and took Ohrid in 1018, four years after his death.

    The present day fortress was substantially reconstructed in the early 2000's and especially impressive is the scale of the construction with about 3 km in total of walls which reach up to 16 m in height and several meters in width. Within the walls there's not much happening (although there may be plans for a historical museum) but the views from the ramparts over the town and lake are unrivalled.

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  • Roadquill's Profile Photo

    Tzar Samuel Fortress

    by Roadquill Written Sep 12, 2011
    Samuel's Fortress
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    Overlooking Ohrid is the massive and impressive Tzar Samuel Fortress, also knows as Samuel's Fortress. The fortress was built during Tsar's Samuels reign, from 976 1014. The towers and walls ran three kilometers. Quite a large portion of the walls remain and numerous towers. Only one gate of the original three remain.

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  • HORSCHECK's Profile Photo

    Samuel's Fortress

    by HORSCHECK Written Jun 19, 2011

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    Samuel's Fortress
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    The fortress on the hill of Ohrid was built in the 3rd century during Roman times.

    It was massively extended in the 10th century by Zsar Samuel; hence the name Samuel's Fortress.

    The fortress walls can be climbed for scenic views of the town and the lake.

    The entrance fee to the fortress is 30 MKD (about 0,50 Euro), which is well worth the money as the fortress is the best place to get a panoramic overview of Ohrid and the lake.

    Directions:
    Samuel's Fortress occuppies the entire summit of the hill of Ohrid. The fortress is well signposted from both the Upper Gate as well as from the St. Clement's Monastery of St. Pantheleimon.

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  • elgin99's Profile Photo

    Samuel's Fortress

    by elgin99 Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    Fortress from Lake
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    Ohrid was a large and important city and cultural center in Byzantine times. In the early 11th century it was also the capital of a Slavic empire ruled by Czar Samuel. His fortress, situated on the hill in the center of modern-day Ohrid, crowns the city.

    Samuel’s fortress consumes the city’s skyline, and was once one of the most impregnable strongholds in the Balkans, with walls 3 km (1.8 m) long and 16 meters (48 feet) high. Today, 18 towers and four gates still remain from the original structure. With its strategic location, overlooking the town and the lake, it provides an ideal place for taking in the whole panorama of Ohrid and its surroundings.

    The best website about Samuel and history: Zsar Samuil

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  • Vanity666's Profile Photo

    Samuil's Fortress

    by Vanity666 Written Jan 18, 2011

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    In Byzantine times, Ohrid was a large and important city and cultural center. For a short time in the early 11th century, it was also the capital of a Slavic empire ruled by Czar Samuel. His fortress, situated on the hill in the center of modern-day Ohrid, crowns the city.

    Samuel’s fortress consumes the city’s skyline, and was once one of the most impregnable strongholds in the Balkans, with walls 3 km (1.8 m) long and 16 meters (48 feet) high. Today, 18 towers and four gates still remain from the original structure. With its strategic location, overlooking the town and the lake, it provides an ideal place for taking in the whole panorama of Ohrid and its surroundings.

    It was the capital of the First Bulgarian Empire during the rule of Samuil in the middle-ages. Today, this historical monument is a major tourist attraction and was renovated in 2003.

    According to recent excavations by Macedonian archaeologists, it was alleged that this fortress was built on the place of an earlier fortification, dated to 4th century B.C., which was probably built by king Phillip II of Macedonia.

    There are still many excavations in progress.

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  • vesna04's Profile Photo

    The Upper Gate

    by vesna04 Updated Nov 23, 2007

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    Samuil`s Fortress originaly had four gates but only one is perserved-the Upper Gate. When you enter the gate you will find yourself at wonderland. So many sights to look for, the medieval Churches, the views...spectacular.

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    Samuil Fortress

    by vesna04 Updated Nov 21, 2007

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    The Ohrid Fortress is first mentioned by the historian Livius in the III century B.C. The ramparts and towers were built around entire summit of the hill of Ohrid. The high towers and masive walls, 3 km long were built to protect the settlement from all sides. The views from up there are great.

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  • olja1234's Profile Photo

    SAMUEL FORTRESS

    by olja1234 Updated Aug 23, 2007

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    Samuel's Forttress is located at the top of a hill, in the old part of Ohrid. This historical monument is a major tourist attraction. The fortress was renovated and each summer, concerts, operas and plays are performed there.
    In every season of the year, there is a marvelous outlook over the lake, the old part of the town and the new one.

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  • The Citadel of Samuilo (2)

    by stewartbel Updated Jul 27, 2007
    Front Towers
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    In Byzantine times, Ohrid was a large and important city and cultural center. For a short time in the early XI century, it was also the capital of a Slavic Empire (or the Western Bulgarian Empire), ruled by Czar Samuilo. His fortress, situated on the hill in the center of modern-day Ohrid, crowns the city.

    The fortress dates from early XI century. It is well preserved and reconstructed by Macedonian authorities. Although it looks like an old-style newly built fortress, it is the authentic citadel from XI century.

    Samuilo's citadel has walls 3 km (1.8 m) long and 16 meters (48 feet) high. Today, 18 towers and four gates still remain from the original structure. With its strategic location, overlooking the town and the lake, it provides an ideal place for taking in the whole panorama of Ohrid and its surroundings.

    Entry fee is 100 Denars (1.6 Euros)

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  • The Citadel of Samuilo (1)

    by stewartbel Updated Jul 27, 2007

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    The Citadel
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    In Byzantine times, Ohrid was a large and important city and cultural center. For a short time in the early XI century, it was also the capital of a Slavic Empire (or the Western Bulgarian Empire), ruled by Czar Samuilo. His fortress, situated on the hill in the center of modern-day Ohrid, crowns the city.

    The fortress dates from early XI century. It is well preserved and reconstructed by Macedonian authorities. Although it looks like an old-style newly built fortress, it is the authentic citadel from XI century.

    Samuilo's citadel has walls 3 km (1.8 m) long and 16 meters (48 feet) high. Today, 18 towers and four gates still remain from the original structure. With its strategic location, overlooking the town and the lake, it provides an ideal place for taking in the whole panorama of Ohrid and its surroundings.

    Entry fee is 100 Denars (1.6 Euros)

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