The northern Greek province of Macedonia stands somewhat apart from the rest of Greece in character. Its landscape, climate, and history also combine to produce an atmosphere as similar to the Balkans as to the Mediterranean. There are more grey skies here than in the typical image of Greece, but there is no lack of colour: in the frescoes of mediaeval churches, ... More>the painted facades of old Ottoman houses, or the black-and-yellow Byzantine flag that flutters outside many churches and public buildings. The best-known natural attraction is Mount Olympus, the highest mountain in Greece, and a favourite with hikers. The remote Prespa Lakes, near the borders with Albania and the Republic of Macedonia, are said to be very beautiful. The best-known beaches in the province are on the Halkidiki Peninsula.