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Pristina (Serbian Cyrillic: Приштина), is the capital and largest city of Kosovo. It is the administrative center of the homonymous municipality and district.
Preliminary results of the 2011 census put the population of Pristina at 198,000. The city has a majority Albanian population, alongside other smaller communities. It is the administrative, educational, and cultural center of Kosovo. The city is home to the University of Pristina and is served by Pristina International Airport.
|POPULATION :||• City and municipality 211,129|
• Urban 211,129
• Metro 504,165
|TIME ZONE :||• Time zone CET (UTC+1)|
• Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
|AREA :||572 km2 (221 sq mi)|
|ELEVATION :||652 m (2,139 ft)|
|COORDINATES :||42°40′N 21°10′E|
|SEX RATIO :||• Male: |
|AREA CODE :||38|
|POSTAL CODE :|
|DIALING CODE :||+381 38|
|WEBSITE :||Municipality of Pristina|
Tourism in Pristina attracted 36,186 foreign visitors in 2012, which represents 74.2% of all visitors that visited Kosovo during that year. Foreign visitors mostly come from countries like Albania, Turkey, Germany, USA, Slovenia and Macedonia, but also from other places. Some of the most visited places near Pristina are Batllava Lake and Gadime Marble Cave, which are also among the most visited places in Kosovo.
Pristina is the first touristic destination in Kosovo and the main air gateway to Kosovo. The number of foreign visitors that have visited Pristina during 2012 has grown for more than 10 thousand visitors, in comparison with year 2008, when there were 25,434 visitors. During the first quarter of 2013 the number of hotels in Pristina was 24 from 102 hotels that were in total in Kosovo and during the third quarter of the year 2013, 18.85% of hotel capacity were used and during the same period of that year, in Pristina 423 rooms were with one bed, 268 rooms with two beds, 13 rooms with three beds, 49 apartments and 6 residents.
Since 2009, Kosovo Tourism Association organizes annually a Tourism Fair in Pristina, which is intended to attract foreign visitors to stay in Kosovo. In the International Tourism Fair held in Tokyo, Japan, in 2013, 4 day packages have been presented that a tourist from Asia can enjoy in Kosovo, starting from Pristina, then continuing in Peja, Gjakova and concluding in Prizren.
Coffee bars are a representative icon of Pristina and they can be found almost everywhere and are also centers of different festivals and events. In the region of Pristina there is Gracanica monastery, which is in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
The area in and around Pristina has been inhabited for nearly 10,000 years. Early Neolithic findings were discovered dating as far back as the 8th century BC, in the areas surrounding Pristina, i.e.: Matiçan,Gračanica and Ulpiana. In the 4th century BC, Bardyllis brought various tribes together in the region, establishing the Dardanian Kingdom. After the Roman conquest of Illyria in 168 BC, Romans colonized and founded several cities in the region, which they named Dardania.
During the Roman period, Pristina was part of the province of Dardania and Ulpiana was considered one of the most important Roman cities in the Balkans. In the 2nd century AD, Ulpiana became a Roman municipium. The city suffered tremendous damage from an earthquake in AD 518. The Byzantine Emperor Justinian Idecided to rebuild the city in great splendor and renamed it Justiniana Secunda but with the arrival of Slav tribes in the 6th century the city again fell into disrepair.
In Serbian Archbishop Sava's Life of Saint Simeon, written between 1201 and 1208, the župe (counties) of Sitnica and Lipljan are mentioned, which had territory around present-day Pristina. Pristina was an important town in Medieval Serbia, having been a royal estate of Stefan Milutin, Stefan Uroš III, Stefan Dušan, Stefan Uroš V and Vuk Branković. The medieval fort of Višegrad, whose ruins lie three kilometres east of the city centre, was mentioned in Milutin's time, and served as his capital, and the nearby Gračanica monastery was founded by him in ca. 1315. The first historical record mentioning Pristina by its name dates back to 1342 when the Byzantine Emperor John VI Kantakouzenosdescribed Pristina as a 'village'. In the course of the 14th and 15th centuries, Pristina developed as an important mining and trading center thanks to its proximity to the rich mining town of Novo Brdo, and due to its position of the Balkan trade routes. The old town stretching out between the Vellusha and Prishtevka rivers which are both covered over today, became an important crafts and trade center. Pristina was famous for its annual trade fairs (Panair) and its goat hide and goat hair articles. Around 50 different crafts were practiced from tanning to leather dying, belt making and silk weaving, as well as crafts related to the military – armorers, smiths, and saddle makers. As early as 1485, Pristina artisans also started producing gunpowder. Trade was thriving and there was a growing colony of Ragusan traders (from modern day Dubrovnik) providing the link between Pristina's craftsmen and the outside world. The first mosque was constructed in the late 14th century while still under Serbian rule. The 1487 defter recorded 412 Christian and 94 Muslim households in Pristina, which at the time was administratively part of the Sanjak of Vučitrn.
Initial Ottoman period
In the early Ottoman era, Islam was an urban phenomenon and only spread slowly with increasing urbanization. The travel writer Evliya Celebi, visiting Pristina in the 1660s was impressed with its fine gardens and vineyards. In those years, Pristina was part of the Vıçıtırın Sanjak and its 2,000 families enjoyed the peace and stability of the Ottoman era. Economic life was controlled by the guild system (esnafs) with the tanners' and bakers' guild controlling prices, limiting unfair competition and acting as banks for their members. Religious life was dominated by religious charitable organizations often building mosques or fountains and providing charity to the poor.
During the Austrian-Turkish War in the late 17th century, Pristina citizens under the leadership of the Catholic Albanian priest Pjetër Bogdani pledged loyalty to the Austrian army and supplied troops. He contributed a force of 6,000 Albanian soldiers to the Austrian army which had arrived in Pristina. Under Austrian occupation, the Fatih Mosque (Mbretit Mosque) was briefly converted to a Jesuit church.
Following the Austrian defeat in January 1690, Pristina's inhabitants were left at the mercy of Ottoman and Tatar troops who took revenge against the local population as punishment for their co-operation with the Austrians. A French officer traveling to Pristina noted soon afterwards that "Pristina looked impressive from a distance but close up it is a mass of muddy streets and houses made of earth".
Declining Ottoman era and Balkan War
The year 1874 marked a turning point. That year the railway between Salonika and Mitrovica started operations and the seat of the vilayet of Prizren was relocated to Pristina. This privileged position as capital of the Ottoman vilayet lasted only for a short while. from January until August 1912, Pristina was liberated from Ottoman rule by Albanian rebel forces led by Hasan Prishtina. However, The Kingdom of Serbia opposed the plan for a Greater Albania, preferring a partition of the European territory of the Ottoman Empire among the four Balkan allies. On October 22, 1912, Serb forces took Pristina. However, Bulgaria, dissatisfied with its share of the first Balkan War, occupied Kosovo in 1915 and took Pristina under Bulgarian occupation. In late October 1918, the 11th French colonial division took over Pristina and returned Pristina back to what then became the 'First Yugoslavia' on the 1st of December 1918. In September 1920, the decree of the colonization of the new southern lands' facilitated the takeover by Serb colonists of large Ottoman estates in Pristina and land seized from Albanians. The interwar period saw the first exodus of Albanian and Turkish speaking population. From 1929 to 1941, Priština was part of the Vardar Banovina of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia.
World War II
On 17 April 1941, Yugoslavia surrendered unconditionally to axis forces. On 29 June, Benito Mussolini proclaimed a greater Albania, with most of Kosovo under Italian occupation united with Albania. There ensued mass killings of Serbs, in particular colonists, and an exodus of tens of thousands of Serbs. After the capitulation of Italy, Nazi Germany took control of the city. In May 1944, 281 local Jews were arrested by units of the 21st Waffen Mountain Division of the SSSkanderbeg (1st Albanian), which was made up mostly of Muslim Albanians. The Jews were later deported to Germany, where many were killed. The few surviving Jewish families in Pristina eventually left for Israel in 1949. As a result of World War II and forced migration, Pristina's population dropped to 9,631 inhabitants.
Pristina in the Kosovo War and afterwards
The first NATO troops to enter Pristina in early June 1999 were Norwegian special forces from FSK Forsvarets Spesialkommando and soldiers from the British Special Air Service 22 S.A.S, although to NATO's diplomatic embarrassment Russian troops arrived first at the airport. Apartments were occupied illegally and the Roma quarters behind the city park was torched. Several strategic targets in Pristina were attacked by NATO during the war, but serious physical damage appears to have largely been restricted to a few specific neighbourhoods shelled by Yugoslav security forces. At the end of the war, almost all of the city's 45,000 Serb inhabitants fled from Kosovo and today only several dozen remain within the city.
As a capital city and seat of the UN administration (UNMIK), Pristina has benefited greatly from a high concentration of international staff with disposable income and international organizations with sizable budgets. The injection of reconstruction funds from donors, international organizations and the Albanian diaspora has fueled an unrivaled, yet short-lived, economic boom. A plethora of new cafes, restaurants and private businesses opened to cater for new (and international) demand with the beginning of a new era for Pristina.
Pristina has a humid continental climate (Dfb in the Köppen climate classification), with maritime influences. The city features warm summers and relatively cold, often snowy winters.
Climate data for Pristina
|Record high °C (°F)||15.8|
|Average high °C (°F)||2.4|
|Daily mean °C (°F)||−1.3|
|Average low °C (°F)||−4.9|
|Record low °C (°F)||−27.2|
|Source: Republic Hydrometeorological Service of Serbia|
Pristina is located at the geographical coordinates 42° 40' 0" North and 21° 10' 0" East and covers 572 square kilometres (221 sq mi). It lies in the north-eastern part of Kosovo close to the Goljak mountains. From Pristina there is a good view of the Šar Mountains which lie several kilometres away in the south of Kosovo. Pristina is located beside two large towns,Obilić and Kosovo Polje. In fact Pristina has grown so much these past years that it has connected with Kosovo Polje. Lake Badovac is just a few kilometres to the south of the city.
There is no river passing through the city of Pristina now but there was one that passed through the center. The river flows through underground tunnels and is let out into the surface when it passes the city. The reason for covering the river was because the river passed by the local market and everyone dumped their waste there. This caused an awful smell and the river had to be covered.
The river now only flows through Pristina's suburbs in the north and in the south.
The number of registered businesses in Pristina is currently at 8,725, with a total of 75,089 employees. The exact number of businesses is unknown because not all are registered. Since independence the Mayor of Pristina, Isa Mustafa has built many new roads in Pristina. Also he has plans to construct a ring road around the city. The national government is taking part in modernising the roadways as well, building motorways to Ferizaj and other cities. An Albanian millionaire in Croatia is building the largest building in the Balkans with a projected height of up to 262 metres (860 ft) and capacity to hold 20,000 people. The cost for this is €400 million. The Lakriste area is designated by Municipality as high-rise area with many complex building. The buildings such as ENK, World Trade Centre, Hysi and AXIS towers are being constructed in an area which previously served as an industrial zone.
Turkey's Limak Holding and French firm Aéroport de Lyon won the concession tender forPristina International Airport. Two companies pledged investment of €140 million by 2012.
Way before its declaration of independence in 2008, Kosovo and in particular its capital Pristina have been a big commerce center in the Balkans with a GDP of 4.0% in 2009. Pristina beholds a variety of commercial centers. The best known commercial centres include Albi Mall, Migros, ELKOS - ETC, Viva Fresh Store, Maxi and Grandstore. Kosovo's economic activities are being supervised and supported by local and international chambers of commerce.
Prices in Pristina
MARKET / SUPERMARKET
|Beer (domestic)||0.5 l||€0.65|
|Bottle of Wine||1 bottle||€3.00|
|Dinner (Low-range)||for 2||€10.00|
|Dinner (Mid-range)||for 2||€20.00|
|Dinner (High-range)||for 2||€|
|Mac Meal or similar||1 meal||€2.80|
|Beer (Imported)||0.33 l||€1.50|
|Beer (domestic)||0.5 l||€1.50|
|Coctail drink||1 drink||€4.00|
|Men’s Haircut||1 haircut||€2.80|
|Mobile (prepaid)||1 min.||€0.05|
|Pack of Marlboro||1 pack||€2.20|
|Toilet paper||4 rolls||€1.25|
CLOTHES / SHOES
|Jeans (Levis 501 or similar)||1||€32.00|
|Dress summer (Zara, H&M)||1||€24.00|
|Sport shoes (Nike, Adidas)||1||€31.00|
|Local Transport||1 ticket||€0.40|
Transportation - Get In
- Pristina International Airport (IATA: PRN, ICAO: BKPR, Pristina International Airport Adem Jashari, Albanian: Aeroporti Ndërkombëtar i Prishtinës "Adem Jashari"; Serbian: Међународни аеродром Адем Јашари / Međunarodni aerodrom Adem Jašari), Slatina village (located 15 km (9.3 mi) southwest. - Airport buses are available 24 hours a day at two hourly intervals.). Flights from London, Zurich, Geneva, Gothenburg, Copenhagen [www], Vienna, Hamburg, Hannover, Düsseldorf, Berlin, Frankfurt, Munich, Stuttgart, Bremen, Verona, Ljubljana, Budapest, Tirana, Istanbul and Oslo. There are low-budget flights to Pristina from Liège, Belgium and with Easyjet from Switzerland. There are cheap connecting flights viaTirana and Ljubljana, but also from most of German airports. - It is an international airport that handles over 1.6 million passengers per year. It is a secondary hub for Adria Airways of Slovenia. The airport is named after Adem Jashari, a former leader of the Kosovo Liberation Army. - Services: sduty free stores, special services within the waiting room for business class passengers, has a restaurant and three bars for coffee and snack, and parking for more than 1,750 vehicles
If you arrive at Pristina airport - small, haphazard but recently modernized and efficient in a Balkan kind of way - you should get from the plane to the outside world within 15 minutes. The city itself is about 25 minutes away by car. The many taxi drivers outside the airport will quote you €25-30 for the trip but will happily be haggled down to €20. If you call a local taxi dispatch agency beforehand, a driver can be waiting for you for €15 (plus the price of the phone call). If you pretend to be waiting for a lift from someone else they'll compete with each other down as far as €5, but it hardly seems fair.
There are trains which travel from Macedonia and Serbia to Pristina. These take long to get there.
- Train Station (Stacion treni), Rr. Tirana (near the end of Rruga Garibaldi). trains to Peja and Skopje
- Fushë Kosovë train station, Sheshi i Lirisë (7km W of centre. Take a taxi (€7-10) or with the N°1 minibus (€0.40), which departs every 10 minutes from Bulvar Bill Clinton (between Rr. R. Doli and Rr. Perandori Justinian).), e-mail: [email protected]. trains for Pristina, Peja and Skopje.
From Albania, there are several daily direct bus connections to Pristina, from Tirana (€ 15), and Durres (€ 16). In Tirana the bus office and stop is right behind the Hotel International. As of Dec 2011, there are two buses daily, at 06:00 and 15:00, and a ride takes approximately 6 hrs. There is no formal bus station in Tirana.
There are also direct bus links from most cities in Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, Turkey, Macedonia, Bosnia, and Montenegro.
(As of 15 July 2012) From Podgorica in Montenegro there is a daily night bus at 9:30PM that runs via Peja and arrives in Pristina at 5AM - €16.
There is one bus every night that runs from Pristina to Ulcinj, Montenegro with stops in Peja, Podgorica and Bari. The buses leave at 7PM from both Pristina and Ulcinj. The trip is €20 round trip and take 9 hours.
From Skopje in Macedonia there are 8 buses per day at 10 past the hour. It is supposed to take 1.5 hours, but we took 3 hours due to traffic! It costs only 320 MKD (just over €5)
- Prishtina Bus Station (Stacioni i autobusave, Prishtinë), Lidhja e Pejes. This is quite a safe place to await sunrise.
From Serbia, there are several direct buses from Belgrade (6 hours, 1 day bus & 2 night buses), run by Kosovo Albanian companies, cost less than €20, stops depending on the route in Niš or Kruševac. There are twice daily mini-buses from Niš, they cost 600 dinars and the guys at Niš Hostel (http://www.hostelnis.rs/) will help you get in contact with organizers, even if you aren't sleeping there, as it is necessary to book in advance (information dates from October 2009). If entering direct from Serbia, be aware that you need to leave by the same way that you came in so that you get Serbian entry/exit stamps .
There is also a bus service from the Bosnian-Herzegovinian capital of Sarajevo (via Novi Pazar; Buy ticket to Novi Pazar on 10PM bus, the bus continues to Prishtina, tickets available on board,i.e. the ticket Novi Pazar-Prishtina have to be bought on the bus, but after Novi Pazar; it is not possible to buy the ticket Novi Pazar-Prishtina on the bus Sarajevo-Novi Pazar, although it is the same bus that then continues to Prishtina); so from Sarajevo to Novi Pazar you buy the ticket for that trip (15 euro one way and 22 euros return - return has to be within a month)and after Novi Pazar you buy the ticket to Kosovo (7euros to Prishtina one way). You arrive in Novi Pazar at around 5.30. At 5.45 there is one bus that heads towards Skopje (Macedonia)with stops in Mitrovica and Prishtina as well as sometimes along the road (€7-8 is the ticket to Prishtina - the bus will stop on the road outside of the main bus station). It passes at the EULEX patrolled border post in North Kosovo, which might be quicker and more preferable. At 6.am there is a bus from Benko tours that leaves Novi Pazar direction Kosovo (final destination is Prizren). The bus used to pass through North Kosovo (only Serbian border post) - there are no security issues,even after July 25, 2011, but when there is heavy snow the bus will not be able to the trip. In that case, you have to do the alternative route (if the weather permits) over Rozaje pass in Montenegro and Pec/Peja - bus to Rozaje from Novi Pazar at 9.30AM (4,50€) and then with taxi to Peja/Pec bus station (taxi will cost around €30), in Peja/Pec every 20 minutes buses to Pristina (4€). Overall the trip Sarajevo-Novi Pazar-Prishtina over Mitrovica lasts around 11 hours and costs around €22 (one way - return is a bit cheaper.) The bus should be in Prishtina around 9AM and continues to Prizren. Advantage of passing through North Kosovo (non Eulex border) is that you enter Kosovo via Serbia, which might save you trouble if you exit Kosovo via Serbia. Whether this is important very much depends on the political climate and on the agreements between Belgrade and Prishtina. Alternatively,if you pass through Montenegro, you can ask Kosovo police not to stamp the Kosovo entry stamp in the passport as you have to exit via Serbia. Even better,though,is if you use your passport for Kosovo (which is necessary), and your ID card for exiting Kosovo through Serbia (for instance, Italian ID is sufficient to enter Serbia)
Transportation - Get Around
- City buses are the preferred method of local travel. They run on set routes and cost cca. €0.40 (2012) . It is usual to pay when you get in so try to have some change. Minibuses were replaced by city bus since Oct. 1st 2006. For detailed maps and timetables, visit [www]
- Taxis are readily available starting at €1.50. Make sure to pick a branded/colored taxi since those are metered. No trip around the centre or from the centre to Arberia, Valenia, Sunny Hill (Kodra e Diellit), etc. should cost more than €4.
- Taxi Victory, . non-stop. starting at €1.50.
- Urban Taxi, , toll-free: 0800 15 15 1. non-stop.starting at €1.50.
- Taxi Roberti, 0800 111 99, toll-free: 0800 15 15 1. non-stop.starting at €1.50.
The roads in Pristina (and in general throughout Kosovo) are pretty bad, but the government is doing a lot in improving that. A lot of times you will be stuck in traffic due to road repairs. This is a result of a number of factors such as: they were never especially good, Yugoslav tank treads and UCK mortars fired at those tanks did nothing to help the situation, and NATO sealed the deal in '99 with its stealth bombings and armoured convoys. Since then, UNMIK and the Provisional Institutions of Self-Government (PISG, Kosovo's nascent government) have simply not had the money to invest in infrastructure.
Two or three of the main roads that make up the major road network have been repaved. Some roads have disintegrated to the point that they are pretty much just dirt and gravel.
- BEST RATED -
- BEST VALUE -
- Shopping-wise, Pristina is full of good bargains but low on selection (and if you happen to be a man who wears M shirts or pants, forget about it). Silver is sold in the old quarter and is a pretty good value; Albanians are known throughout the former Yugoslavia as silversmiths.
- The outdoor bookstalls adjacent to the Grand Hotel are a good place to pick up your copy of the Code of Lekë Dukagjini. Or a map of Pristina that most likely has names for all the streets no one has ever heard of.
- Also on the streets: CDs and DVDs that are cheap, and more likely than not, illegal.
There are a variety of restaurants with something for everyone's taste. Radio taxi drivers will know the location of most major restaurants frequented by internationals. Try a traditional qebabtore (you can find one anywhere), or a Turkish doner shop (best ones around the corner from Payton Place, near UNDP) for a real taste of the local food and great value. If you are a foreigner you may have to do a fair bit of pointing to order, but it should be worth it.
- Papirun sandwitch shop, Luan Haradinaj nr. 1, Prishtinë (from the square behind MFA/Grand Hotel, head towards Buzuku bookstore), . 07:00-20:00. Simple menu of sandwiches, salads and natural drinks 2-3.5€.
- Aroma, Rexhep Luci (near Strip Depo and the ABC Kino and Metro across from the Grand Hotel). For quick snacks, have terrific sandwiches;
- Aurora Fast Food, Xhorxh Bush (across RTK tower).
- Amadeus, Ahmet Krasniqi,. Another restaurant in the Dragodan neighborhood. Serves pizza and other western dishes.
- Ben-af, Dardania. Very good food/meals, self-service, downtown location. Recommended by local taxi drivers! reasonable prices.
- Ciao (Past Bau Market, on the road out to Skopje), . This Macedonian restaurant on the road out of town to Skopje and Gracaniza, is a popular stop for internationals and aid workers craving a bacon-wrapped pork medallion, or some of the best bread and salad in the city. (You can find Pristina's first miniature golf course just a hair further down the street .) ~10€.
- City Bakery, Përmendorja e Nënës Terezë?, Bulevardi Nënë Tereza, 41 (Centre), . Traditional food of Kosovo.
- Chalet Denis and Mumtaz Mahal (Hotel Denis), Ahmet Krasniqi.The chalet offers great views of the city from Dragodan Hill, near the US embassy and NATO's KFOR Film City base. Friendly service and the best banana splits in Pristina, presented in a Swiss chalet-style atmosphere. Now incorporates the menu and staff of the Mumtaz Mahal Indian/Nepalese alongside its normal Italian/Albanian menu.
- Restaurant Ex, Fehmi Agani (Near to Ministry of Public Services).Friendly, English-speaking staff, varied menu including curry.
- Himalayan Gorkha, Qafa Gallery, TMK Street (Luan Hardinaj cnr).Fine Asian restaurant. Pineapple lassi or Masala tea is a great non-alcoholic drink if you don't like beer, vodka or the local drink (Rakhi rrussi). For starters there is chicken pakora which is nice fried chicken which tastes exactly like Kentuky Fried Chicken or vegetable pakora. Best thing about this restaurant is you can have both spicy and non spicy items. For main course there is Chicken Tikka with Roti or Naan. They also have Chicken Biyani, Vegetable Biriyani and Butter chicken. If you are fond of Chinese you can have Chicken fried rice and Veg Fried Rice.Meal for two €10-15 with drinks.
- Home restaurant and bar, Luan haradinaj/Sheshi "Nëna Tereze"(on front of EUROKOHA, 300m from Grand Hotel or Hotel Prishtina and just 200m from Diamond Hotel), , e-mail:[email protected]. Lively atmosphere and variety of delicious food. Serves Medterranian, Italian and Kosovar food. Visitors come from many international staff of the surrounding offices, embassies and national ministries. Local actors and well known singers. Very good selected music, English speaking staff and very good wines.
- Il Passatore, Hil Mos (East). This is an authentic Italian restaurant, run by a real mama and her family. Go there in a taxi as it's a bit hard to find, but all the cabbies know it.
- Lai Thai (Film City NATO base). It is owned by the lady that has a restaurant with the same name in Kabul. The Thai food is excellent.
- The Lounge, Mother Teresa Blvd (Opposite Radio and Television of Kosovo building,). Smart and upmarket bar/restaurant. Food is very good. Offers a mixture of international and local cuisine.
- Pilat restaurant (not difficult to find, but it's probably best to ask someone to point you in the right direction.). Albanian food (with possibly the best bread in the world). Seriously delicious local food. Gets very busy at lunchtimes with Kosovan politicians.
- Pjata, Rruga Dubrovniku nr.1 (Ali Pashë Tepelena) (a block away from the UNICEF office), , e-mail: [email protected].WiFi connection for free and good food. The only con is that you will think not to be in Kosovo.
- Pinocchio restaurant and hotel, Dragodan/Arberia neighbourhood, Rr.24 maj 115 (near USAID and the British Embassy). Excellent food and a warm atmosphere, as well as a panoramic view of Pristina below. For lunch, hit Te Komiteti on Qamil Hoxha street and have the gazpacho and chicken sandwich.
- Pi Shat, Dragodan neighbourhood (KFOR Headquarters area). this is a traditional Albanian restaurant with a wonderful atmosphere. If you are unfamiliar with Albanian food, just ask the waiters to put together a platter for you - you'll end up with a delicious range of grilled meats. A meal for two ~30€.
- Rron Restaurant, Veternik or Ravine district (On Route Rat towards Gjilane, top of the hill before turn for Swebat. Right turn immediately after sign.), . , Rron Restaurant is actually just outside the Pristina city limits on the way to Gracanica. Hidden behind an under-construction building for the past couple of years, Rron is a treasure that is popular with local and international politicians as well as the normal guests. The bar area is quite impressive with vaulted ceilings and shelves lined with all different kinds of alcohol all the way up. The far end of the restaurant has a plate-glass wall that looks out into the garden seating area which is lovely during the summer. There is a small playground for children outside on the far end of the garden which can make summer meals a bit loud at time when there are groups of children running around.
- Sarajeva. sells Burek (5 locations)
- Sarajevo Fast Food (Qebaptore Sarajeva), Andrea Grupa Street(close to RTK and one behind the old Post Office.). Sells kebab made in Banja Luka (bosnian) style (banjallucki qebab)
- duelling South Asian restaurants (the mall on UCK St.?). (one Indian, one Nepali) are both great for a long, quiet dinner.
- Tiffany Pizza, Fehmi Agani (directly behind Home). with an eerily simliar layout, features perhaps the best pizza in Pristina. The spinach pizza is highly recommended, as is the special Raki, all the way from Mitrovica. Another good pizza place is Margarita, opposite of main Police building, wide menu including fresh summer salads and tasty pastas are at your disposal. Home pizza "Margarita" is highly recommended.
- Not to be missed: Panevino, Pellumbi, Pishat.
- Aroma 2, Rrustem Statovci. Does Albanian and international fast food, take away or eat in, for low prices - e.g. a mixed grill which two people can stuff themselves on, €6.
Coffe & Drink
Cafes and bars are especially crowded on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday nights. Clubs open up and close down on an almost seasonal basis, but there are some reliable standouts, and neighborhoods where something good is bound to present itself. In cafes, a good cup of coffee can be bought for under €1.
- If you like coffee, and have a massive amount of time on your hands, Pristina is the city for you. There are cafes absolutely everywhere, and most of them are packed through the warm season with fashionably-dressed young people, dropping a euro a day to keep themselves amused. Unemployment / underemployment is pervasive throughout Kosovo, and tends to affect people from all walks of life and different levels of education. Which means that dude in the sleeveless t-shirt with streaked-blond hair at the table beside you could just as easily be an economist as a farm kid from Kamenicë, so learn to say "Mirëdita" with a passable accent and feel free to start a conversation. What to order? "Macchiato" (espresso with hot milk, similar to the American latte) is the catch-all term for "coffee" throughout Kosovo. Lately, some top-end coffee bars have installed WIFI zones and access to Internet.
- Hot cafe districts include the strip down from OSCE near Tiffany's (especially Kaqa), the area at the beginning of Luan Haradinaj street across from KTA, and the student hangouts on Bill Clinton in Dardania.
- The White Tree (Druni i Bardh'), Mujo Ulqinaku No. 15 (The White Tree is a five minute walking distance to the city centre, situated in the quiet, calm and peaceful Peyton neighbourhood. It is located just behind the well-known alternative cocktail bar Crème de la Crème, on Mujo Ulqinaku Street, opposite the 42 floor skyscraper under construction.), , e-mail: [email protected]. 08:00-23:00.The White Tree is a hostel with the best summer bar in town. When you get into the garden it seems like you're in a different place! People like to call it as the beach of Prishtina. 0.70-5.
- Sabaja Beer House (Behind the Prishtina Stadium, near the Red Cross), . Lunch and Dinner, 7 days. Sample Gracanica craft brews over an American-style bacon cheeseburger a brief walk from downtown.
- MIQT Pub (MIQT), City square, behind the Swiss Diamond Hotel(City square, behind the Swiss Diamond Hotel), . Lunch and Dinner, 30 diferent beers, 7 days.
- 8, Behind the Pristina Stadium (Behind the Pristina Stadium). 7 days.
- Little Cafe and Outback (around the OSCE). These are also popular
- Phoenix Bar. For the ultimate foreigner experience, down a pint at here on a Saturday night with the folks from UNMIK, but be warned: if the idea of drinking and dancing with fourtysomething long-term single expats in a downscale Yorkshire pub doesn't appeal, this is not the place for you.
- Toto & Morena (near the ABC cinema). These are favoured by young Kosovars, nice decor
Sights & Landmarks
- Mother Teresa Cathedral (Cathedral of Blessed Mother Teresa in Pristina, Albanian: Katedralja e së Lumes Nënë Tereza në Prishtinë), Justiniani Street. This is a Roman Catholic cathedral being constructed. In 2007 the Government of Kosovo approved plans for the building. The view from up there is amazing especially on sunsets
- Saint Saviour Serbian Orthodox Church, Agim Ramadani Street/Sheshi Hasan.
- Saint Nicholas Church, Rr. Shkodra (Nazim Gafurri Street off). Daily mass ~17:00. This is the only remaining operative Serbian Orthodox Church in Prishtina. It is housed in a 19th-century building. It used to showcase 18th century wooden icons, created by painters based in Debar, Macedonia, several 18th century frescos and an iconostasis of 1840 from Belgrade, Serbia, which were all irreversibly damaged during the 2004 unrest. The Saint Nicholas Church once again began to hold liturgies in 2010 in a ceremony attended by a few hundred Serbian Orthodox believers. It now features a revamped exterior, restored roof, new marble tiles and new icons.
- Çarshia Mosque (Bazaar Mosque, Taş Mosque literally, the Stone Mosque, or Xhamia e Çarshisë), Rr. Meto Bajraktari. This is the oldest building in Prishtina and it marks the beginning of the old town. The basement of this mosque was laid out in 1389 during the rule of the Ottoman Sultan Bayezid I and its construction was continued during the reign of Sultan Murad II in the 15th century. The Carshi Mosque was built to celebrate the Ottoman victory of 1389 in the Battle of Kosovo
- Jashar Pasha Mosque, Nazim Gafurri Street (near the clock tower).is currently being restored, and is closed to the public , however the work that is visible on the exterior is beautifully executed in calming blues. - It was named after Jashar Mehmet Pasha, a wealthy citizen of Prishtina and mayor of Skopje in 1842. Inscriptions found inside the mosque led to the conclusion that it was built in 1834. Jashar Pasha Mosque is a typical architectural monument for old cities with Ottoman heritage. It symbolizes a sacral building of ‘Kosovar style’ with an acknowledgement of oriental influence. Its aim was to speed up the acceptance of Islam among the citizens of Prishtina. It is composed of a hall for prayers, hayat and a minaret. The mosque is disguised by a cupola supported by four pendentives. The original portico was torn down to give way to an expansion of the neighboring street.
- Pirinaz Mosque (Xhamia e Pirinazit), Rr. Ismail Dunoshi (Three blocks east from Kosovo Museum). was built in the second half of the 16th century and was founded by Piri Nazir who served as Vezir under two Ottoman Sultans. The Pirinaz Mosque is made of the same stone as Mbretit (Fatih) Mosque but its construction began 100 years later. This mosque represents an important cultural value, which is further increased by the belief that Prince Lazar’s remains were buried on the location of today’s Pirinaz Mosque with the permission of Sultan Bayezid, son and successor of Murat, who died in the battle of Kosovo in 1389. Later on, Lazar’s remains were moved to Ravanici Monastery in Serbia.
- Sultan Mehmet Fatih Mosque (Imperial Mosque, Albanian: Xhamia e Mbretit) (opposite the clock tower). It was built in 1460–1461 during the reign of the Ottoman Sultan Mehmet II, also known as al-Fatih or the Conqueror and was named in his honor. Its interior features ornamental decorations and detailed floral designs, as well as a 15 m dome, which was quite impressive for a 15th-century construction. It was recognized region-wide as the largest construction of this nature. In 1689, the mosque was temporarily converted into a Jesuit church dedicated to Francis Xavier by the Austrian occupants during the Austrian-Turkish wars. The Imperial Mosque was restored during the rule of Sultan Mehmet IV in 1682–1683, whereas the present-day minaret is a reconstruction of the original, which was damaged during the earthquake that struck Prishtina in 1955.
- Parliament (Assembly of Kosovo), Agim Ramadani Street (North of the Independence Park).
- Old Hamam remains (Great Hamam, Thermelet a Hamamit), Agim Ramadani Street (Агим Рамадани). Founded in 15th century. It used to be part of the complex of the Sultan Murat Fatih Mosque and according to the legend, the construction workers who were hired to build Fatih Mosque were ordered by Sultan Mehmet II to take daily baths in the hammam. It had two symmetrical baths, one for women and the other one for men. The hammam is composed of 15 domes with small holes which are used to let the light penetrate in. A fire that occurred in 1994, resulted with an illegal opening of three shops which blocked the old entrance. Unfortunately, a hammam that once used to be a prestigious social venue for men and women, for many years looked abandoned with only few remaining walls full of rubbish, overgrown trees and wastewaters flowing inside of the building.
- Shadërvani Fountain (Shadërvan), Nazim Gafurri (Next to Çarshia Mosque). This is a marble fountain located between the Carshi Mosque and the Museum of Kosovo and is a typical component of Ottoman architecture. The fountain is the only one remaining in the city from over fifty that once existed. In addition to providing a source of drinkable water, Shadërvan has been traditionally used for ritual ablution.
- Clock Tower (Sahat Kulla), Rr. Ylfete Humolli (Next to Kosovo Museum). It was built in the 19th century by Jashar Pasha. It served as a means of informing the town during the Ottoman Empire rule, in order to let people know when to pray as well as the traders closing their shops. The 26-meter high hexagonal clock tower was made of sandstone and bricks. The original tower was burned in fire and its bricks were used for reconstruction. The authentic bell was brought from Moldova and had the inscription “This bell was produced in 1764 for Jon Moldova Rumenin”
- Academy Building (Akademia e Shkencave dhe e Arteve e Kosovës (ASHAK)), Rr. Nazim Gafurri, , , , fax: , e-mail:[email protected] [email protected], [email protected].
- The Hynyler House and other Ottoman konak-style private houses (Bajraktari Türbe) (next to the clock tower). Here stands Ottoman hoses another of Pristina’s few remaining 19th century. It is currently used by the Academy for Sciences and Arts (Akademia e Shkencave dhe e Arteve, ASHAK) who have added a rather ugly glass winter garden to the building. If you ask you can enter to walk around the courtyard. - The Hynyler House symbolizes a typical Ottoman konak. It is a private house, which has been under the list of the protected monuments since 1967
- Mausoleum of Sultan Murat I (Tomb of Meşhed-i Hüdâvendigâr, Tyrbja e "Sulltan Muratit 2"), A bit out of the city in Mazgit settlement (4km NW). This object built in honour of Sultan Murat I, who was killed in the Battle of Kosovo in 1389. The building constructed in 1850, does not actually contain the remains of Sultan Murat since they have been moved to the imperial museum in Bursa, Turkey. There is little to see inside of the building; an important of the garden is a 700 year old mulberry tree which survived from the war.
- Former Hotel Union building (Hoteli "Union"), Bulevardi Nënë Tereza. The building of the former “Hotel Union” was built in 1927 under the supervision of the Austrian architect, Andrija Kremer. It combined elements of neo-Renaissance, neo-baroque and Art Nouveau and was one of the few buildings in Prishtina with European-architecture influence. During the first few decades of its existence, it was named “Hotel Skënderbeu” after the 15th century Albanian resistance leader, Skanderbeg and this was witnessed by his ingrained icons on the building.
- Monument of Brotherhood and Unity, Rr. Meto Bajraktari (North from UCK). This symbolise the ‘unity and brotherhood’ of the Albanians, Serbs and Montenegrins
- Palace of Youth & Sports (Pallati i Rinisë dhe i Sporteve), Rr. Luan Haradinaj, .
- Arbëria Park (Parku Arbëria), Street Stambolli and Tony Blair (North from UNMIK's compound).
- City Park (Parku i Qytetit) (East from Agim Ramadani Street).
- Gërmia Park, Dr. Shpëtim Robaj, (at the end of bus 4, 5 or 9). Here are outposts of green, the biggest and best of which is Gërmia Park. During the summer, the lake-sized swimming pool here is a hot spot for families and young people, but year-round the park itself offers grassy spaces to relax or kick the ball around, and a network of mine-cleared trails through the dense woods perfect for dog-walking or drunken hide-and-seek tournaments. A couple of restaurants at the top of the park have good food and nice views. Also interesting to check out the cluster-bombed police bunker, just up the road from the best restaurant.
- Independence Park (Park i Pavarësisë), Agim Ramadani Street and Bulevardi Nënë Tereza (Near to Former Hotel Union building).
- Jewish Cemetery (Varrezat e Jahudive (hebreje)) (on top of Velania’s Tauk Bahqe). Founded in 19th century, is a burial site in the outskirts of Prishtina consisting of 57 tombstones. The city was once home to a Jewish community numbering over 1,500 people, who settled in the Balkans during the late 15th century from Spain after escaping the Reconquista.
- Park of Martyrs (Parku Varrezat e Dëshmorëve), Rr. Isa Kastrati (Mahalla e Muhaxherëve) (East from City Park). This is a cemetery Also there is the National Martyr’s Monument (Varrezat e Dëshmorëve).
- Taukbashçe Park (Parku i Taukbashçes), Nazim Gafurri Street (East 1.5km).
- Tjerrtorja Archeological Site (NW outskirts of Prishtina). Tjerrtorja was a neolithic settlement which was identified accidentally in the 1950s. The neolithic site was named after the discovery place, where a factory was started to be built known as the cotton and textile production plant Tjerrtorja. The area was believed to have had an abundant collection of terracotta figurines, human shaped statues and baked clay anthropomorphic artifacts.
Museums & Galleries
- Kosova Art Gallery, Agim Ramadani Street (Агим Рамадани), 60(Universiteti i Prishtinës, Behind the National Library), e-mail:[email protected]. Tu-Sa 10:00-14:00, 15:00-18:00, Su 10:00–15:00. Owned and operated by the Ministry of Culture & Sports.
- Kosovo National Museum (Muzeu Kombëtar), Ibrahim Lutfiu Street (East from Parliament). Free (2012).
- Pristina Ethnographic Museum (Emin Gjiku House Museum, Muzeu Etnologjik Emin Gjiku), Zija Prishtina, Rr. Iliaz Agushi, e-mail:museuetnologj[email protected]. 10:00-17:00. tucked back in the old town streets about 5 minutes walk from the main museum. Beautiful house, costumes and traditional tools. - Don't miss it. Sells traditional gifts. - The complex once belonged to Emin Gjinolli (Turkish Emin Kücük); literally, ‘little Emin’ - who was a member of one of the most recognized families of Prishtina in the 20th century. The Ethnological Museum “Emin Gjiku” is composed of a traditional guest house, an arts studio, a family home and a permanent ethnological exhibition. by donation (2016).
- Independence Museum (Kosovo Independence House “Dr. Ibrahim Rugova”), Rr. Fehmi Agani (beside the Tiffany’s restaurant). Open M-Sa 10:00-17:00. A small museum about Kosovo’s recent history free.
- Stacion - Center for Contemporary Art Prishtina, Zija Prishtina Street, , fax: , e-mail:[email protected]. Tu-F 11:00-16:00, Sa 11:00-14:00. This is the only place in the country with regular contemporary art exhibitions and events.
Things to do
- No visit to Pristina is complete without a walking tour. To see the city from street-level is best: start off in the Dardania neighborhood, in front of the three-storey portrait of Bill Clinton, and stroll past the university to the Grand Hotel and UNMIK. Follow Nena Tereze street towards the Skenderbeg monument and the new Government Building, then point yourself toward the historic mosques and meander through the tight lanes of the old quarter. You will see street market stalls, kids hawking cigarettes and phone cards, qebabtores and cafes, and the vibrant community life of Kosovo's biggest city. If you have more time, it's also worthwhile wandering up into Dragodan / Arberia or Velania (especially City Park, also referred to as "the Italian park," and the park dedicated to now-deceased President Ibrahim Rugova).
- Do as the locals do: In Pristina, this means korza. In the evenings, when it's warm, a large proportion of the population heads out into the streets and promenades, between cafes or in with no particular destination. The objective is to see and be seen, chat with friends, and take in as much fresh air as possible before the horrific winter descends. Note that 53% of Kosovo's population is under the age of 25, so most of the people on the street around dusk are teenagers and people in their early twenties. Being in one of the poorest countries in Europe, Kosovans struggle to afford nights out and meals in restaurants. Instead, they get dressed up in their best clothes and walk up and down the main drag. Join them, or if you prefer, grab a beer or coffee in an outdoor cafe and watch them go by.
- Stay out late because the streets are safe and Albanians love foreigners. Also go out to bars and such, as they are usually filled but make sure you drink some "Peja" beer (Key word PEJA)
- Privately-owned outdoor swimming pools are springing up around Kosovo, some just outside the city and worth the euro to cool off in the summer.
- National Theater of Kosovo, Mother Theresa Square. (Sheshi Nëna Terezë) nr.21, (North of the 'Independence Park'), , e-mail:[email protected]. Former named "The Regional Populist Theater" then the "Provincial Populist Theater" - The repertoire of this theater was built on many national, international and former Yugoslavian dramatic scripts. This theater performances, which were presented in different festivals with national and international character in the former Yugoslavia, were praised highly by critics of the time and were honored with various artistic awards.
- Dodona Theater (Tetari i Qytetit të Prishtinës - “Dodona”), Rruga Xh. Mitrovica, pn (200m East from Kosova Art Gallery), , e-mail: [email protected]. first known as the Theater of Youth, Kids, and Doll - "Dodona"
- ODA Theatre, Pallati i Rinisë dhe i Sporteve nr. 111 (Luan Haradinaj?) (next to City Stadium), , fax: , e-mail: [email protected]. Theatre venue with variety of cultural and artistic events, including theatre performances, concerts, exhibitions, International Jazz Festival in November and much more.
- Library of the University of Pristina (Universiteti i Prishtinës). It looks like it is constructed of massive concrete Lego bricks and then covered with chain mail. It is certainly worth a look.
- National University Library of Kosovo (Albanian: Bibloteka Kombetare e Kosoves) (located in the campus of the University of Prishtina, right in front of the National Gallery of Kosovo), . It is the highest institution of its kind in the Republic of Kosovo. With a fund of thousands of books it is one of the biggest libraries in the region. Every year more than 40000 exemplars are added to the library archive - The building: It was designed by the Croatian architect Andrija Mutnjakovic. Its space consists of 16,500 square meters. It is made with zenith windows, with a total 99 domes of different sizes and is entirely covered in a metal fishing net, which have their own particular architectural symbolism. It houses two reading rooms with 300 and 100 seats respectively, a reading room for periodicals, rooms for special collections, cataloguing and research, a 150-seat amphitheatre and a 75-seat meeting hall. The lobby of the library is used for various cultural events. The floor of the hall is a unique work of diverse mosaic marble stone. The largest dome of the library is the main ornament of the hall's high ceiling, thus providing ample natural lighting. - According to the architect of the National Library of Kosovo the building is meant to represent a style blending Byzantine and Islamic architectural forms.
Festivals and events
Etno Fest is a cultural event held in Kukaj village during summertime. As the years passed the festival progressed into something bigger than the exposure of traditional food and folkloric music. Artist such as: actors, dancers, musicians, cooks, painters and photographers show their artistic creation under an open sky. One of the most visited areas in EtnoFest is the acting stage where local plays have come alive. Within EtnoFest exists a smaller festival named AgroFest and is specifically made for the traditional Albanian food.
The founder of EtnoFest is the Albanian director Fadil Hysaj. The festival usually lasts for 5 to 7 days.
Pristina Jazz Festival
This festival is known as the most artistic event in Kosovo. It brings together a lot of significant artists from all over the world to flow the local jazz scene. It is held annually in October/ November, in the ODA theatre (Behind Pallati i Rinisë complex), at 20:00. Pristina Jazz Festival has hosted world-famous artists such as:Uri Caine, Tom Kennedy, Reggie Washington, Giulio Martino,Willard Dyson, Bob Albanese, Hans-Joachim Roedelius, Robin Verheyen, Aki Rissanen, Peppe La Pussata,Tim Story,Francesco D’Errico, Yiotis Kiourtisoglou without excluding artist from Kosovo such as Besim Gashi,Faruk Musliu, and Visar Kuqi.
ReMusica is a festival where a group of talented Albanians from Kosovo led by Rafet Rudi (the initiator of the whole idea) work to promote contemporary music, through presentations of different stylistics tendencies of the 20th century up to the present day. ReMusica, so far, had a lot of famous guest artists from all over the world – from individual ones to collective ensembles. Guests like: Aki Takahashi (Japan), Peter Sheppard Skaerved (England), Rafael Andia (France), Andreas Lewin Richter (Spain), Vande Gorne (Belgium), Ensemble Vivendi (Kosovo), etc. This festival is held every year in May.
The Pristina Music, Wine and Beer Festival
The Pristina Music, Wine and Beer Festival is a summer event that is held annually from 30 August to 1 September at Pallati I Rinise. It offers different types of beers and wines for half of the price, meaning you can get completely wasted and still have cash in your wallet to get back home. It provides music, delicious food and different party-themed games. The festival is dedicated only for adults.
Chopin Piano Fest
The Chopin Piano Fest is a festival held in April every year. It is appreciated by critics, fans and growing audience as an excellent presentation of the mastery of piano. Because of the great success this festival had, and appreciation by the audience in Kosovo, it has become a traditional piano festival. It offers opportunity to see and enjoy live piano performances by local and international pianists performing piano works not only of ChopinfEST, but also of other well known composers, classical and contemporary ones. The attractive program is selected and prepared by Festival Artistic Director Prof. Lejla Haxhiu-Pula, the first pianist in Kosovo.
The international festival of young musicians is one of the most important events in Kosovo. It brings classical music to Pristina, with performances by hundreds of musicians in various venues during March and April. The first edition was held in 2006, ever since then the festival has provided the city with the sound of Classical Music from International Performers for a week. This festival aims to present new and young musicians from different countries of the world, while highlighting new forms of musical expression Talented people like:Alexander Prior (British), Maurizio Mastrini(Italian), Pervin Chakar (Turkish), Petrit Çeku (Albanian) and a lot more have participated in DAM Festival.
For 11 years now in Pristina is held the annual VideoFest festival. The festival is about the video clips that different musicians and entertainers create. Artists from Kosovo and places nearby compete with one another for the main prize. VideoFest aims to promote and stimulate the creativity productions in the aforementioned territories. The jury does the selection of the best video-clips in different genres but also the best video-clip of the year.
Pristina Kids Fest
Pristina Kids Fest is a festival where kids from different places compete. This is a singing competition that is being held in Pristina for the 5th year. This year's festival takes place in the American School of Kosovo on October 24 and then in 21 square on October 2 . Children from Sweden,Malta, Bulgaria, Montenegro, Macedonia, Albania, Kosovo, Romania etc. The international children's song festival in Kosovo is organized by the International Multicultural Children's and Young People's Center "Xixëllonjat". The goal of this festival is to stimulate and promote children's new music productions and the creation of young musicians. The festival also aims to bring children from different countries together in order to share experience and tradition.
International exhibition Gjon Mili
Gjon Mili is an international exhibition that is held every two years in The National Gallery of Kosovo (Albanian: Galeria Kombëtare e Kosovës). This event is a memorial for one of the most famous photographers in the last century, Gjon Mili. Despite the extremely short time that his photographs had to be exposed, they still had the ability to show a great connection between science and art, something this that doubles the value of his exhibitions. Some of the previous winners are: Genc Kadriu (2013), Driton Paçarada (2002), and Mumin Jashari (2004).
International exhibition Muslim Mulliqi
Muslim Mulliqi is an exhibition which displays visual arts such as painting, drawings, videos, etc. A contest is opened yearly by The National Gallery of Kosovo (Albanian: Galeria Kombetare e Kosoves) giving any artist the chance to participate. The winner is chosen by the committee, which has included Loreta Ukshini, Antigona Selmani, Malsor Bejta, Din Azizi, Fatos Kabashi, etc.
Artist of Tomorrow
This event is a program initiated by Wendy W. Luers, founder and director of Foundation For a Civil Society in the United States. It is an exhibition that provides space for young creators to expose their art. The project is built with help from The American Embassy In Kosovo. To stimulate the youth, a prize awaits for the most hardworking youngster. The winner is given the opportunity to travel to the US in order to represent Kosovo for a month. After the trip the winner is also encouraged to have a personal exhibition in order to share the newly gained experience. This contest is held every year in The National Gallery of Kosovo (Galeria Kombetare e Kosoves).
People in Pristina seem to have a special affection when it come to cars. Two events of car racing are held during the year. The first one is highway car-racing and it is held in June, the other has a Tōge racing theme (The cars rcae in mountains and hills). Participants need to be well trained and the vehicles under great conditions. the whole even is organized by FASK (Federate of Auto Sports in Kosovo).
Pristina's Half Marathon
Pristina’s Half Marathon is an event that is organized from Ministry for Culture and Sport. The main reason of this marathon is to promote the values of peace, coexistence and excellence in sports, and this is the reason that the motto of this Marathon is “Run for Peace and Tolerance. In this half marathon participate people from different countries, like: Kosovo, Kenya,Morocco, Hungary, Ukraine, Sweden, Albania, Macedonia, Serbia, Bulgaria and Moldova. All participants will be awarded with certificates, ranking and finishing time, but the for the best finishers in senior, veteran and disables category for men and women will be awarded from a total of 12.000 euros.
Streetball in Kosova is held since year 2000, and it is organised in Germia. It is a traditional tournament where hundred teams and thousand of youth people unite to play, so in that way they make the streetball more attractive to others, special to the young population but in the same time they reduce violence and crim. In this even, until now, competed people from different countries like: Albania, Croatia, Kosovo, Romania, Hungary, Germany, Italy,Montenegro and Slovenia. This sport event progressed a lot since the first edition. At year 2005, for the first time it was organised in seven major cities. After that, at year 2006, Kosova participated in the Streetball World Championship in New York. In 2009, Streetball Kosova participated for the first time in the Prague International Streetball cup, where the Team Akull represented the Kosova in PIS 2010, where they won the 3rd place.
Later at year 2012, applied for the first time at FIBA 3x3 rules, where Team Kujta won the tournament in the Senior class. A year late, this group of talented youth applied again in FIBA 3x3, and in memory of Kosova’s valued partner, MVP (Most valuable player) of the tournament was prized with the “Genc Dushi” award.
- Zone 2, Garibaldi Str., near RTV21. (Garibaldi Str., near RTV21.).
- MHz, Luan Haradinaj Str., near ex-ABC1 Cinema. (Luan Haradinaj Str., near ex-ABC1 Cinema.).
- Duplex Club, Pristina Stadium. Good for dancing, usually play American hip-hop.
- Zanzibar (, near the ABC Kino cinema, and Strip Depo down the street from there). Internationals gravitate to here.
Things to know
The main language you will hear in the street is Albanian. English is widely spoken in the 3 square kilometre space in the centre of town where internationals and those working for international organizations predominate; the further you go from the centre, the less likely you will be to find English widely spoken. However, most people from Pristina, especially young people speak at least a little English so you can more than likely get by. Navigating around the city is easy - the city centre is small and walkable (watch out for crazy drivers who often hop sidewalks and plow through intersections) and people are generally receptive to efforts to communicate in broken Albanian and English. Serbian is Kosovo's other official language, but it is seldom heard on the streets in the capital. You should be able to speak Serbian in some government offices, but should be cautious about how you speak it in public, except in Serbian areas, where you should be careful of speaking in Albanian. German is easily the next most widely spoken language. Ties between the Kosovo Albanian diaspora in Germany and Switzerland and Kosovo are very strong; many older Kosovo Albanians have worked there as guest workers in the past.
Safety in Pristina
In Dardania neighbourhood (the residential blocks between the bus station and the centre), be careful when the beggar kids are around—they may follow you for a while, speaking (presumably in Albanian), and may just come too suspiciously close to your bag and pockets behind you in the meantime.
Lately, Pristina is rebuilding, and some of the city roads now are new, but if you are driving, you still must be on the lookout for large potholes.