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North Macedonia

The Church of Sveti Jovan overlooks Lake Ohrid 

‘Best of’ travel lists brim with anniversaries and airport openings. Rare is the opportunity to celebrate the rebranding of a country. Such is the case for North Macedonia – a place most known simply as Macedonia – which claimed a fresh moniker after decades of political debate with bordering Greece. The agreement, signed in 2018, provided a feel-good moment of neighbourly love and a revamped international image for the tiny nation in the heart of the Balkans. It’s already renowned for gastronomy, ancient tradition and nature, but culture junkies and adventurers will find new excuses to visit in 2020 with the addition of flight routes to Unesco-protected Lake Ohrid and the recently launched High Scardus Trail, a 495km trek along the region’s most dramatic peaks.

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