Stilt - house settlements


The traces of human existence on the territory of this region date back to the earliest times, which can be traced back through the rich archaeological heritage. Favorable geography and climate have enabled human settlement and presence since prehistoric times. The contact with the lakeshore and the freshwater lake rich in fish, as one of the basic living conditions, enabled formation of palafitic stilt-house settlements, as well as settlements located along the coast. This is evidenced by the numerous stilt-house settlements, as well as the 15 recorded archeological sites from the prehistoric period on the territory of this region.

In the last years of the 20 th century, along the eastern rocky coastline, which was thought to be "inhospitable" for locating this type of prehistoric habitats, remnants of three prehistoric stilt-house settlements were discovered in the waters of the Ohrid Lake. In 1997, the first underwater archaeological excavations in Macedonia were carried out at the site Plocha Mikjov Grad in the Bay of Bones, along the southern coast of the Gradishte peninsula, near the village of Peshtani.

Based on the results of these underwater excavations and on the analysis of the movable archaeological material, it can be safely stated that this stilt-house settlement dates from the Late Bronze Age and the beginnings of the Iron Age, that is, from 1500 to 700 BC. Today, the site Plocha Mikjov Grad in the Bay of Bones is an attractive museum complex with many contents: reconstructed palafitic settlement above the lake waters, conserved, restored Roman castrum presented on the highest plateau of the Gradishte hill, accessible facility with museum cabinets and facility for underwater tourism.

In November 1998, remains of another stilt-house settlement were discovered, this time near the village of Trpejca, at the site of Na Dol in the Bay of Prch. Wooden piles and movable archaeological material (pottery, stone tools) were recorded at a depth of 5-7 meters below the water surface. At that time, experimental underwater surveys were carried out mainly to identify and photograph the remains of this settlement. According to the nature and the peculiarities of the findings, it was found that this settlement also dates from the end of the Bronze Age.

In July 1999, a third settlement was discovered along the eastern shore of the Ohrid Lake. This time it was an area that occupied the northern coast of the village of Peshtani, in the part of the so-called Bay of the Bombs. Here, a wooden pile on the shore was discovered by chance, as well as numerous fragmented ceramics that by its typological features is almost identical to the ceramic production of the previous two stilt-house settlements.

Map with location