In this article, I will list where you can stay around Lake Ohrid in North Macedonia, including my personal recommendations for accommodation.
If you are wondering what towns and villages there are around Lake Ohrid, and whether the town of Ohrid is the only choice, then you have come to the right place!
So you have heard about this magical place in North Macedonia, Lake Ohrid, and you really want to go and check it out! Are you wondering where to even start? First things first – let us decide where to stay around Lake Ohrid first!
Truth be told, the best place to stay at Lake Ohrid is the town of Ohrid itself.
Ohrid is an absolutely incredible town and one of my favourite places in the whole of the Balkans. It is packed with heaps of things to do, eclectic and super interesting architecture, a unique atmosphere and stunning scenery. You really can not beat Ohrid as a destination in North Macedonia and as a base for a stay at Lake Ohrid.
That’s what all the travellers I met and all the articles I read before arriving in Ohrid told me.
But if, like me, you are not easily convinced, I get you!
I felt the same way. I have visited many lakes in the world and knew from experience that the most beautiful and most recommended towns were always super touristy and often overrated. I always look for more interesting alternatives.
But I was surprised when my search on where to stay at Lake Ohrid didnt bring many results. Apart from Ohrid town of course.
I finally decided on Ohrid, partly because of the many accommodation options within my budget, and it was the best decision!
Although there are a few smaller areas and villages around Lake Ohrid you could stay at, Ohrid town is pretty much the best.
So if you are looking for a quick answer, you are free to skip the rest of this post.
But if you want to explore all the options, continue reading.
In Summary – Best Accommodation at Lake Ohrid:
Best Hotel at Lake Ohrid: Ohrid Boutique Apartments
Best Hostel at Lake Ohrid: Old Town Hostel
Best Small Lake Site Hotel: Villa Bella Ohrid
Best Hotel with Spa and Pool at Ohrid: Hotel Tino Sveti Stefan
Table of Contents
Things to know about Lake Ohrid
Lake Ohrid, nestled between south-western North Macedonia and eastern Albania, is an ancient lake that is millions of years old. It is one of the oldest and deepest lakes in Europe and has a unique aquatic ecosystem. It is also one of the oldest lakes in the world and the deepest lake in the Balkans!
Surrounded by rolling hills and charming villages, it is an incredibly clear lake with beaches that often resemble those of the seaside rather than the lake!
The North Macedonian part of Lake Ohrid was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1979, and in 1980 the cultural and historical area of Ohrid was included. Thus, this breathtaking lake is protected and incredibly pure.
The beauty of Lake Ohrid could easily be the best reason to visit this part of the Balkans, but there are also many interesting things to do in the area, be it to enjoy nature or to explore the rich history and culture of this region!
Did you get your travel insurance yet? Travel Insurance will let you travel with the peace of mind knowing that no matter what, your unexpected medical or travel emergencies are covered. I use Heymondo for a few reasons. They have clear policies with no deductibles, the price is excellent for what they offer and the price doesn’t go up when you are over 30 years old. They have a dedicated, easy-to-use app and free assistance calls.
I can get a cover for a month or three months and I know I can travel with peace of mind and get the best product for my money.
Heymondo offers my readers 5% off so go ahead, and click on this link and get your quote.
Where to stay around Lake Ohrid
Town of Ohrid
For a convenient and well-rounded stay around Lake Ohrid, you should base yourself in the town of Ohrid itself. This really is the best option for exploring the rest of the lake and enjoying this wonderful town. And although Ohrid is the most visited town on the lake, it doesn’t feel touristy at all and still retains much of its charm!
This picturesque town not only offers a charming atmosphere but also convenient access to the lake’s main attractions. Ohrid offers many beaches you could enjoy, a fantastic old town, a bazaar, a fortress and many more historical sites, but also a plethora of great restaurants, cafés and bars.
Various boat tours depart daily from Ohrid marina and there are many buses to places such as St Naum Monastery, Trpejca, Bitola, Struga, Tirana and Skopje.
Where to stay in Ohrid:
If you are on a budget I highly recommend two of Ohrid’s best hostels! I stayed in both and I think there is no better choice.
Old Town Hostel is one of the best hostels I have ever stayed in. I stayed there for a week, really bonded with the staff and made great friendships! It has a fantastic social vibe, super comfortable dorm beds and an awesome kitchen! If you are lucky you might be around for a family dinner too!
Old Town Hostel became a backpackers’ institution at Ohrid while retaining its origiginal backpacker vibe! Don’t skip it!
Blue Lake Hostel is also a great choice and it’s where I spent my first couple of nights. I stayed there because I decided to arrive earlier and the Old Town hostel was fully booked. I had a great time at the Blue Lake Hostel! It has more of a hippie vibe, which landed very well with me! The owners are super nice and hospitable, there is a cool terrace a living room and a kitchen you could use. The majority of rooms have just single beds (no top bunks!) and in my room, there was even a massive table we could work at!
Struga is a very underrated city on Lake Ohrid, and hardly any traveller considers making a longer stay here. Yet it is a town worth visiting! Even if just for a couple of days!
Struga is a lovely little town located on the shore of Lake Ohrid with the river Black Drin running right through it. It is a popular tourist destination among locals yet very much undiscovered by international tourists, so a great spot to get a glimpse of local tourism!
Struga is a slightly more modern city in comparison to Ohrid so if you are looking for more amenities, shopping opportunities as well as good transport links to both Macedonia and Albania, Struga might be a great town to stay around Lake Ohrid.
Where to stay in Struga:
Lagadin or Peshtani
Now, if you want to stay near the town of Ohrid but prefer smaller resorts and charming villages, there are a few around the lake to choose from.
Lagadin is the first place on the list and is a small tourist resort with a lovely beach and some guesthouses and small hotels for a relaxing stay. Some say that Lagadin has the best beach on Lake Ohrid.
Located at the foot of the Galicica National Park, it is an ideal starting point if you are planning to do a lot of hiking.
Peshtani, just 4 kilometres from Lagadin and 12 kilometres south of the town of Ohrid, is a small village and tourist resort.
I really liked Peshtani! It is such a peaceful and charming little holiday resort in Ohrid with a very nice beach and a charming waterfront!
Both Lagadin and Peshtani can be reached in less than 30 minutes by bus from Ohrid.
Where to stay in Lagadin and Peshtani:
Both towns mostly offer private accommodation in guesthouses and villas, which adds to the charm of the location. No fancy hotels and big resorts!
But if you are looking for out of this world stunning and luxurious stay then you should consider Villa Bella Ohrid! It will make you feel like you are on a Greek island for a fraction of the price!
If you are looking for great affordable accommodation then Lile Pestani is hard to beat! Private room, a pool and a big garden for €20!
Another great budget option in Peshtani is Villa Pegasus Pestani!
Elshani is a village situated on the slope of a hill, literally on the doorstep of the nature park and many great hiking trails. It is more of a mountain village than a lakeside resort, which makes it a wonderful alternative for nature lovers!
It’s a place where you can observe the villagers living their lives as there was no such thing as tourism.
I visited Elshani on my hiking day as this is where I started my hiking adventure. Apart from the hiking trails, Elshani also offers incredible panoramic views!
At the start of my hike, I came across an elderly lady carrying wood and pulling a donkey who stopped and started talking to me. She must have been well over 80 years old! Luckily I can communicate with people in most Balkan countries (because Polish is pretty similar) and she made me laugh when she finally asked me where my husband was! One must love Balkan villagers!
You can get here by bus from Ohrid. So if you’re looking for a remote base with the option to hop on a bus and visit Ohrid,
then Elshani is for you!
Where to stay in Elshani:
There are a few excellent guest hoses in Elshani and literally all of them have great reviews! Who would ever complain when staying in a cosy guest house while being showered with Balkan hospitality, food and surrounding beauty?
Trpejca, called the Saint Tropez of Ohridis, is the last real fishing village on Lake Ohrid. If you see Trpejca from the boat (and you will if you take the boat to the monastery of St. Naum), it is the most picturesque town in the area with houses sitting on the slope of a hill cascading down to the pebble beach of turquoise waters! And mountains behind!
Trpejca is so tiny that it really does not compare to Saint Tropez, but it is very charming!
Trpejca can easily be visited by bus from Ohrid, but if you are looking for a fishermen village experience on Lake Ohrid, you can stay here too!
Now that you booked your accommodation, be sure to read all my my guides to wonderful North Macedonia!
And while you are in Ohrid and you are wondering if St Naum Monastery is worth visiting I have you covered too!
Oh and as always, if you have any questions please leave them in the comments below. I always answer!
Happy Travels and enjoy Ohrid!
This post may contain affiliate links which means that if you purchase the product or make a booking via one of my links, I will receive a small commission. Please know that I will never recommend or promote a product I don’t believe in or haven’t used. This way, you are supporting this blog at no extra cost to you. Thank you!