Macedonia is a Southeast European nation located in the Balkan Peninsula. It is a successor state of former Yugoslavia and attained independence in 1991. In 1993, Macedonia became a member state of the UN. Due to a name dispute with Greece, Macedonia is often referred to as the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia or FYROM.
Macedonia shares its borders with Kosovo, Serbia, Bulgaria, Greece, and Albania. Skopje is the largest city in Macedonia as well as the capital of the country. Here, we discuss the biggest cities of the country and important facts related to these cities.
The Five Biggest Cities In Macedonia
The biggest city in Macedonia is Skopje which is also the country’s capital city. The region in and around the city has been inhabited since 4000 BC, and Neolithic artifacts have been discovered at some historical sites in the city. Through history, the city, formerly known as Skupi was annexed and occupied by various empires like the Roman, Byzantine, Bulgarian, Serbian, and Ottoman empires. In 1991, the city became the capital of the independent Republic of Macedonia. Skopje is based on the Vardar River’s upper course and is on a major trade route between Athens and Belgrade. The main industries active in this Macedonian city are chemical, timber, leather, printing, metal-processing, and textiles.
Bitola is a Macedonian city based in the Pelagonia Valley surrounded by mountain ranges in the southwestern part of the country. Bitola is located at a strategic junction where the Adriatic Sea region connects to Central Europe and the Aegean Sea. It is one of the major cultural, commercial, and educational hubs of the country. Since the Ottoman period, Bitola has served as the seat of consulates of many European nations and hence has also been nicknamed as "the city of the consuls.” Thus, it is a historically important city and one of the oldest in the country.
Kumanovo is the seat of the Kumanovo Municipality, the country’s biggest municipality. The city is located in Macedonia’s northeastern part near the capital city of Skopje. The city lies 1,115 feet above sea level and is surrounded by mountains. Kumanovo is a significant economic, cultural, and trading center in Macedonia. It has a well-developed textile, footwear, and tobacco industry. Four companies from this city featured in the 2013 list of Macedonia’s highest revenue-earning companies.
Prilep is Macedonia’s fifth biggest city and is nicknamed as "the city under Marko's Towers” due to the nearness of the city to the Prince Marko towers. Prilep has a well developed industrial sector and is best known for its tobacco and cigarette industry. Prilep’s tobacco is used by some of the world’s best cigarette-making companies like Marlboro, Camel, and West to manufacture cigarettes. Other important industries active here include timber, textiles, food, and electronics. A variety of pure white marble, the Macedonian Bianco Sivec, is also produced here. The biggest section of the city’s population is of Macedonian origin while Romanis, Serbs, and Turks also live here.
Located on the foothills of the Šar Mountain, Tetovo is the fifth biggest city in Macedonia. The city covers an area of 1,080 square km and is divided by the Pena River. Tetovo has a long and rich history and has housed multiple ethnic groups since ages. Presently, the city serves as the unofficial capital of a predominantly ethnic Albanian region. Nearly one-third of Tetovo’s population are ethnic Macedonians. The State University of Tetovo is located in the city.