Sveti Spas Church
Čaršija is the hillside Turkish old town of Skopje and evokes the city's Ottoman past with its winding lanes filled with teahouses,...
Mustafa Pasha Mosque
Standing on a plateau at the very top of Skopje's Čaršija, the Mustafa Pasha Mosque is a working mosque where you can see locals come...
Museum of Macedonia
It's hard to imagine a less inspiring building in which to house the national museum, but even if the building looks like an abandoned...
Old Town Brewery
This beer bar can be found up a staircase from one of Čaršija's busiest pedestrian streets and is Skopje's only place for a yard of...
Skopje's Čaršija is still home to a couple of ans – ancient Ottoman inns, similar to desert caravanserai – and the Kapan An houses...
Makarije Frčkoski 8 · interesting places nearby
Sveti Spas Church information
Partially submerged 2m underground (the Ottomans banned churches from being taller than mosques), this church dates from the 14th century and is the most historically important in Skopje. Its sunken design means it doesn't look like a church, so you might not notice it at first: it's opposite the Old Town Brewery – look for the pretty bell tower that watches over it, built into its outer courtyard wall. Inside the church an elaborate carved iconostasis shines out of the dark.
What you see today is a restoration dating to the early 19th century. The iconostasis (a wooden screen separating the nave of the church from the altar area at the back) is one of Macedonia's most impressive at 12m long and 7m high. It was built by early-19th-century master craftsmen Makarije Frčkovski and brothers Petar and Marko Filipovski, and its tiered carvings play out important bible scenes. Staff will be only too happy to give a brief tour of the church and can speak a number of languages (though be warned, English is not their strong point).
In the church grounds lies the tomb of Goce Delčev – Macedonia's foremost national hero – and a small exhibition commemorating his life. Delčev is celebrated for his role as leader of the VMRO (Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organisation) and was killed by Turks in 1903.