Krusevo, the highest town in all of Macedonia. Loved by skiers in the winter, hikers in the summer and coffee drinkers all year round. This quaint hilltop town is famously known for its blue window trimmings, its 19th century Macedonian architecture and as the site of the great 1903 Ilinden uprising.

The Town of Krusevo

A more bountiful town you couldn’t find with fruit trees dripping with ripeness and growing wild everywhere you look. We ate breakfast while sightseeing, picking little orange wild plums, big purple plums, blackberries, and figs.

The valley below is tobacco country with field upon field of the white flowers of tobacco plants. Throughout the villages are drying racks, filled to the brim with tobacco leaves slowly turning from green to yellow to brown. Clearly, these locals have no issues with theft as the drying racks are left on display everywhere.

Travel Guide Krusevo: Tobacco out to dry

Macedonia’s love of outlandish monuments has not bypassed this ancient village. Built on the highest area in the town sits the enormous Makedonium monument, dedicated to the Ilinden Uprising against Ottoman domination. The rebellion did not succeed, but the uprising is still seen as a symbol of the national struggle for freedom and democracy.

Travel Guide Krusevo: Makedonian Monument

Also up on the hill and winning awards for modern architecture, is the Memorial house for Tose Proeski, Macedonia’s best pop singer, and a Krusevo native. In the nearby cemetery, his grave is adorned with framed photos, posters, teddy bears, plastic flowers and many religious figurines, no doubt placed by adoring fans.

Travel Guide Krusevo: Tose Proeksi Memorial House
Tose Proeski Memorial House
Travel Guide Krusevo: Tose Proeksi Cemetery
Tose Proeski’s grave in the cemetary

Other places of interest are St. Nikoli Church in the Old Bazaar, St. Jovan, the Monastery of Sv. Preobrazhenie, Meckin Kamen monument symbolizing the last and desperate attempts to defend the Republic of Krushevo, Nikola Martinoski Museum which houses paintings and drawings of the famous Macedonian artist.

A Day in Krushevo

We wild camped on the hill next to the Makedonium monument, so began our day up there, then wandered down to the cemetery and on to Tose Proeski’s house.

We continued downwards, strolling the mainly cobbled streets of the town while nibbling on the lowest hanging fruit. Our wanderings led us past St Jovan, where a man clip-clopped past on a donkey. The views over the red roofs of the town from so high up were amazing. The huge Macedonian flag towering above the Old Bazaar could be seen from every place in the village. We passed the ski chairlifts, now quietly creaking in the breeze. The temperature up here was much cooler and the pine-scented air was crisp and refreshing. No wonder people escaped up here during the hot summer days.

The streets of Krusevo

From high up, we could hear a loud buzzing, like the hugest swarm of bees on steroids. Listening more closely we realised it was the steady hum of many people chatting at the coffee shops in the Old Bazaar below. We had barely seen another soul on our walk, so headed to the town center to see what was happening. And what a buzzing place it was! The back to back coffee shops had barely an empty seat, kids were playing hide and seek and there were dogs everywhere.

As usual in the Balkans, most of the cafes only served drinks so it took a while to find a place that served food. We found a table and settled in for a little bit of people watching. I do often wonder where the women are, as the cafes are full of men drinking coffee and chatting, but very few women are ever present.

The town of Krusevo is like a ghost town on the outskirts, but vibrant, bustling and full of life in the center.

City Guide Krusevo: Blue Trimmed Windows City Guide Krusevo: Ski lifts

Where to Eat

In the town centre, right next to St. Nikoli Church, is SCAR Restaurant.

Higher up, close to the Tose Proeski Memorial House, was a fabulous traditional Macedonian restaurant, Крушевска одаја. The interior was decorated with traditional Macedonian costumes and the food was excellent!

Krusevo Traditional Macedonian Restaurant


Wind your way up through the narrow roads of this hillside village, until you reach this huge flat parking lot right on the top of the hill. There was a public toilet you could use for 20 Dinar. No other facilities.
Google will try and make you turn right up a cobbled street. Don’t, as it’s seriously steep! Just continue on the windy road and you will end up in the parking lot.
A gentle stroll down the road and you’ll be in the center of town.
GPS: 41.37477, 21.24722

Have you been to Krusevo? What was your favourite thing to do here? I’d love to hear from you!

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Travel Guide to Krusevo_ The Highest Village in Macedonia

Travel Guide Krusevo: The Highest Town in Macedonia

Jeanne and her son Tai have been full time travellers since 2017. They are lovers of all things travel with an insatiable desire to explore every last corner of the globe. Homeschooling and working as they move from one incredible location to the next. Their goal is to use their travel guides and stories to inspire others to explore the world.


    • lbadmin Reply

      Oh Wow! I’d love to do Macedonia on a bike. That must have been amazing? Krushevo was a great little town, but you would have needed some serious pedal power to get your bike up there!

  1. Petar Gajdov Reply

    Hello Jeanne,
    Wonderful reportage about Krusevo.
    I have to say it is not a village, even it is very small. Officially it is a highest small town on the Balkans, not only in Macedonia.
    Thank you for your story.
    I like it very much!
    Petar Gajdov

    • Jeanne Reply

      Hi Petar. Thanks for letting me know about the correction. I will change my wording immediately.

  2. Just to make a correction…According to Macedonian Law, Kushevo is a small city, not a village 🙂

  3. Constantin Reply

    Good țo know the town was founded by aromanians shepards and trademen in the 17-th centuri and still lives here a majority of them. They are the oldest population of these place speaking a latin language similar to romanian. The 1905 uprising was against the otomans and spread not only in the TODAY North Makedonia but also in northern Greece and parts of Bulgaria. The aromanians were in the top of uprising, many were organized from abroad in Romania and Greece.

    • Jeanne Reply

      Thanks for the historical insight into these wonderful people Constantin.

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