STRUMICA -the main agricultural center in the Republic of Macedonia

It has food industry, textile factories and a developed domestic and international trade network. Strumica is the largest city in eastern Macedonia, near the Novo Selo-Petrich border crossing with Bulgaria. About 100,000 people live in the region surrounding the city. It is named after the Strumica River which runs through it. The city of Strumica is the seat of Strumica Municipality. Strumica is the main agricultural center in the Republic of Macedonia. It has food industry, textile factories and a developed domestic and international trade network. The town is first mentioned in 2nd century BC with the Hellenic name Αστραίον (Astraîon, Hellenic for "starry" by Ptolemy and Pliny). It was later known as Tiveriopolis; it received its present name from the Slavic settlers of the Middle Ages. In modern Greek the town is known as Στρώμνιτσα (Strómnitsa), and its name in Turkish is Ustrumca.

Strumica is accesible from Skopje from both sides, through Stip (150 km) and though Valandovo (165 km), but the second one it much more better. It is just 29 km from Radovis, 66 km from Stip, 30 km from Valandovo and 51 km from Dojran. The border with Bulgaria at Novo Selo is just 29 km. Strumica is full of sights. If one feels like hiking then they should visit the nearby Mountain Belasica and the dazzling waterfalls of Smolare and Koleshino.  Visitors shouldn’t leave without experiencing the exquisite solitude of Vodocha and Veljusa, two nearby Byzantine monasteries where monks and nuns still live, and are quite known for their fresco paintings, mosaics and tranquility in general.

History and culture

Ancient periodAccording to archeological research, the beginning of continuous life in Strumica dates back to 6th millennium B.C., a fact proved by the neolith settlement Stranata near the village Angelci, as well as by the findings from the Czar’s Towers site nearby Strumica, where traces of a prehistoric culture which existed from the late a neolith until early Bronze Age (early 4th to mid 3rd millennium B.C.) were discovered. The area was populated later by the Paionians.The first mention of the city under the name Astraion is in the writings of the Roman historian Titus Livius in 181 B.C. regarding the execution of Demetrius, brother of the Macedonian king Perseus (179-168 B.C.), son of Philip V of Macedon (221-179 B.C.). The name Astraion came from the Paionian tribe called Astrai. In 168 B.C. Macedonia became a Roman protectorate and was subsequently divided into four regions (meridas). Astraion fell into the second merida. In 148 B.C. Macedonia became a Roman province. In the Roman period the city changed its name to Tiveriopolis, which is evidenced by a marble statue base dedicated to the patron Tiberius Claudius Menon, who lived between the late 2nd and early 3rd century. During the reign of the Roman emperor Julian the Apostate (361-363 A.D.), the fifteen holy hieromartyrs of Tiveriopolis were killed. In 395 A.D., the Roman Empire split, and Macedonia fell under the Eastern Empire. After that, Tiveriopolis became part of the province Macedonia Salutaris in the late 4th century and part of Macedonia Secunda in the late 5th century. The urban mansion Machuk dating from the late ancient period today stands witness for the existence of a city settlement from that time.

Byzantine and Slavic periods

Due to the migration of the Slavs, which took place from the sixties of the 6th century until the thirties of the 7th century, the city suffered a major destruction. The area was settled by the Slavic tribe Strumicani who took their name after the Strymon River, which, in turn, they named Struma. For a short while, the sclavin of the Strumjani existed until it was conquered by Byzantium. From 845 to 855, the Byzantine military administrator of the Bregalnica-Strumica region was Methodius. Later on, the Strumica region was conquered by the Bulgarian ruler Boris (852-889). The Strumica region remained part of the Bulgarian state until 1014 A.D. In the 11th century written sources for the first time begin to refer to the city as Strumica. By the end of the 12th century, the Byzantine central power had weakened and, as a result, many feudal lords broke away and became independent. Such independent lords in the Strumica region were Dobromir Hris (1185-1202) and later Dobromir Strez (1208-1214). But the Byzantines eventually put an end to the existence of their independent lordships. The end of the 13th century marks the beginning of Serbian attacks on Macedonia. Hrelja would rule with Strumica and the nearby region, until 1334, when the Serbian king Stefan Dushan took over the city. After the fall of Dushan’s kingdom, the Strumica region was first ruled by Uglesha, the brother of Volkashin. The Turks als conquered Strumica in 1383. This marked the end of the Middle Ages in the region.Ottoman periodThroughout the Ottoman period (529 years) till Balkans wars in 1913, the Turkish administration used the name Üstrümce for Strumica. Then went in the borders of Bulgaria and later after the first world war in Serbia. 20th CenturyIn the First Balkan War of 1912 the Turks were defeated by the joint effort of the Balkan allies Serbia, Bulgaria, Greece and Montenegro, and driven out of Macedonia, including Strumica. Bulgaria annexed the town of Strumica. In the Second Balkan War (1913), which was among the Balkan allies for partition of Macedonia, Bulgaria was defeated. However, according to the Bucharest Peace Treaty (28 July 1913) Strumica stayed under the rule of Bulgaria. The Greek armies, stationed in Strumica, were revolted by the decision for withdrawal and set the town on fire. It burned from 8 until 15 August 1913, when more than 1900 public buildings, private houses and other constructions were burnt. Strumica stayed under the rule of Bulgaria until 1919 (when with the Versailles Peace Treaty the First World War was over) then entered the Kingdom of SHS (Serbs, Croatians and Slovenians; from 1929, Kingdom Yugoslavia). In the Second World War Strumica was captured by the Bulgarians on April 6th 1941.

Roman Bath Bansko

At 12 km from the town of Strumica, at the northern foot of Mount Belasitza, located are strong hot water springs with a temperature of 72 ° C. The source is located in the village of Bansko, which is the main reason why water baths once got...

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Smolare Waterfall

It can be found above the village of Smolare, at an elevation of 630 meters, located deep in the Belasica Mountains where the Lomnica River springs hidden among the hundred-years-old beech trees. The waterfall is a unique waterfall...

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Kolesino Waterfall

It is enchanting in every season. During the summer it will refresh you with its clean mountain air, and in winter it will astonish you with its frozen beauty. It is found at an elevation of 610 meters on the Baba River in the heart...

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Gabrovo Waterfall

In the underarms of the Belasica Mountain, hidden from the public eyes the Gabrovo Waterfall is situated. The location of the waterfall is right across the village of Gabrovo, after which the name of the waterfall was given, and 15 kilometers...

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Travel by bus

If you are considering to go by bus you have a dozen of bus lines between Skopje and Strumica. Time travel is 3 and a half hours. Price for one way ticket is 480 denars / 7.8 EUR and for two ways ticket is 680 denars / 11 EUR.

Time of departure from Skopje: 06:00, 08:05, 10:00, 12:05, 13:00, 14:00, 15:00, 15:30, 16:00, 17:00, 17:30, 18:00, 19:00, 20: 37.

Note: If you are considering traveling on weekend and holidays please contact the bus station for any changes of the lines.

Travel by train

There is no train line to the city.

Travel with taxi

If you are not comfortable to travel by train or bus, you can always get a taxi. The price in one way is more or less 4300 denars / 70EUR.

We recommended:

ABC Logistica
Mob: +389 78 504 500
Tel: +398 2 6143 900

Go with a car or rent a car

If you'd like to explore the land during your travel to Strumica you can go by car. Distance between Skopje and Strumica is 149 km.

For rent a car we recommenden:

ABC Logistica
Mob: +389 78 504 500
Tel: +398 2 6143 900

MIDA Rent-a-car
Office 2 (Airport Alexander the Great)
Tel/Fax + 389 22 56 10 10
24 hour service phones
Mob.1: 070 256 433
Mob.2: 071 223 042
Mob.3: 070 366 958