Gostivar is a town in the Western Macedonia. The town has about 45,000 people.
Gostivar lies in the main road Skopje-Gostivar. This road is smooth and nice but you have to pay a toll to drive on it.
Bus from Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Slovenia
Eurobus is an international coach operator based in Struga that has almost daily tours from Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Italy and Slovenia to major cities in Macedonia. Prices from 70€ and possible to get student discount.
As you leave Gostivar, on the way to Kičevo and Ohrid, in the Vrutok village is the gorge of the biggest river in Macedonia, Vardar, that is 388 km (241 mi) long and flows into the Aegean Sea, at Thessaloniki. Gostivar is one of the biggest settlements in the Polog valley. The Polog valley can be observed from the high lands of Mavrovo and Galičnik, seeing the villages scattered through the valley like some kind of beautiful mosaic.
Some 26 km (16 mi) from Gostivar is located one of the best ski resorts in Macedonia: "Zare Lazarevski" in the Mavrovo National Park. Mavrovo is an interesting tourist attraction with unique natural beauties. This tourist centre is believed to be one of the most beautiful tourist attractions in Macedonia. It is a place of many natural beauties, magnificent vistas, a crystal clear lake, high mountain hills from where you can see panoramas of Bistra and its nearby village suburbs. Mavrovo attracts tourists during all seasons, but it is more attractive in winter when it is all covered with deep snow. This mountain is very rich with flora and fauna. The whole tourist complex manages with 1200 beds and over 1000 villas, with many hotels, restaurants and shops. The Mavrovo region hosts ski tournaments and other sport recreations. The peaks on the northern part of the Bistra mountain: Rusino Brdo, Sultanica and Sandaktas, have good conditions for winter sport activities. The popularity of Mavrovo is growing every year with the attraction of many tourists.
Šar Mountain is one of the most important Alpine mountain ranges in Macedonia together with neighbouring Mount Korab and Bistra mountains. The range is 80 km (50 mi) long and 12 km (7 mi) wide and is covered with snow from November till March or April every year. Its highest peak, Titov Vrv, is situated on 2,760 metres (9,055 ft) above sea level. Picturesque village of Pozarane is one of the most famous and most beautiful in the region.
From the diverse fauna, the Šarplaninac dog is worth mentioning, as it has earned a fine reputation among pet dog lovers. These dogs are used by the sheep-herders of Šar Mountain (Šar Planina in Serbian and Macedonian), to guide and protect their sheep herds. Bears, wild boar and deer exist in these lands. Due to its rich vegetation and wildlife, as well as its preserved and unpolluted environment, it represents a real mecca for tourist resorts and sports facilities, where medical herbs can be picked, and even hunt activities arranged.
At summer time, Šar Mountain can be described as an ocean of grass. In fact, Šar Mountain is considered the largest compact area covered with pastures on the European Continent. This provides excellent opportunities for animal husbandry. High quality dairy products, mainly cheese and feta cheese, are made in the many sheepfolds on Šar and the adjacent mountains. The best known kinds of feta cheese are Shara and Galicnik. The Šar Mountain, along with the adjacent mountains, is rich in wide-ranging vegetation, which provides possibilities to gather medical herbs and to produce healthy food.
Located in the northwestern part of Macedonia, Popova Shapka is one of the most popular winter ski resorts in the country. It is situated on the beautiful Šar Mountain, 1,780 metres (5,840 ft) above the sea level, just 35 kilometres (22 mi) from the capital Skopje. Popova Shapka offers excellent ski environment and hotel accommodations. Visitors not only from the Republic of Macedonia, but also from many other countries, return season after season here to relax, have fun, and experience adventure. Popova Shapka has been a host to both the European and Balkan Ski Championships. Not far from the resort, there are many small picturesquely glacial lakes scattered around on the mountain. There are two ways to get to Popova Shapka: by car, and by rope-railway with a starting location in Tetovo. The rope-railway is 6 km (4 mi) long and it takes about 36 minutes to reach the top.