Bitola and Ancient city of Heraclea Lyncestis
Bitola is a city in the southwestern part of the Republic of Macedonia. It is located in the southern part of the Pelagonia valley, surrounded by mountain ranges, several kilometers north of the border with Greece. The city stands at an important junction connecting the south of the Adriatic Sea region with the Aegean Sea and Central Europe, and is an administrative, cultural, industrial, commercial, and educational center. It has been known since the Ottoman period as "The City of the Consuls", since many European countries had consulates in Bitola. It's also one of the oldest cities on the territory of The Republic of Macedonia, having been founded as Heraclea Lyncestis in the middle of the 4th century BC by Philip II of Macedon.
Heraclea was an ancient Greek city in Macedon, ruled later by the Romans. Its ruins are situated 2 km south of Bitola. The city was named in honor of the mythological Greek hero Heracles. The name Lyncestis originates from the name of the ancient kingdom, conquered by Philip, where the city was built. Heraclea was a strategically important town during the Hellenistic period, as it was at the edge of Macedon's border with Epirus to the west and Paeonia to the north, until the middle of the 2nd century BC, when the Romans conquered Macedon and destroyed its political power. The Romans divided Macedonia into 4 regions and Heraclea was in the fourth region. The main Roman road in the area, Via Egnatia went through Heraclea, and Heraclea was an important stop. The prosperity of the city was maintained mainly due to this road. Objects discovered from the time of Roman rule in Heraclea are votive monuments, a portico, thermae (baths), a theatre and town walls.
The single-day trip includes visits to the Bitola National Museum and Gallery, Town’s
Broadway – Shirok Sokak and the archaeological site of Heraclea Lyncestis.