Prizren is both the second largest city in Kosovo and also a popular destination for backpackers travelling through the area. Prizren feels less cosmopolitan than the capital Pristina and a little more traditional. Most of the population here are ethnic Albanians and there are many beautiful mosques located throughout the town. Prizren doesn’t boast the vibrancy and youth of Pristina but the hills, river and fortress over looking the town make for a more idyllic location to visit.
The best option in Prizren is about 3 minutes walking distance from the city centre. The hostel has 4 floors and can accomodate about 35 guests. Plenty of showers and toilets on each floor with central heating and a large common room on the ground floor as well as a fully fitted guest kitchen in the basement. The owner will sometimes supply a bunch of free beer to the guests and he also owns a bar in town and will often take guests out for a cheap night of drinking there. Very welcoming place.
A family run hostel in a 300 year old family house renovated into a modern hostel and opened in summer 2015. Very centrally located, this small hostel has two dorm rooms and room for 16 people in total. Close to everything you want to see in Prizren but the hostel is a quiet place to chill out and sleep well. Every bed has it’s own locker, a curtain for some privacy, reading lights and a electrical plug. They also have a common space, with a little bar and some sofas, to relax and socialise with others. The included breakfast provides you with traditional food from the best bakeries around town.
Sights and Highlights
Whoever ruled over this area of the Balkans, did so from this fortress. The fort was given its modern shape during the four and a half centuries of Ottoman rule but was previously occupied by both the Byzantine and Serbian Empires. The fort has an amazing view and can be reached easily by following the path behind the Sinan Pasha Mosque. An alternative and more scenic route is to hike up the hill from the riverside (4.5km 1hr). On the hill side, follow the river east out of town to the Maresh district, past the site of the Dokufest camp. When you come to the end of the path on the hill side, cross the bridge and continue. The path will cross the river a second time then lead up the hill through the woods full of wildlife to the back entrance of the fortress, and you can make your way back to the town via the Orthodox Cathedral to the mosque.
The name is a little odd but I like to think that they are suggesting that if a burger could eat food, it would eat the kind of food on the menu here. The food is tasty and really cheap. To find it, walk down to the river and turn right. Walk another 50m down this alongside the river and Burger’s Food will be on your right hand side. It is a small place with seating for about 4 people.
Kafiç has cheap beer and has a different style to most of the bars in Prizren. The music selection at a lot of bars in the Balkans can leave a bit to be desired but the music in Kafiç is a better alternative mix.
Everything in Prizren is a walkable distance. The bus station is about a 10min walk out of town.
Getting In and Out
Prizren is well connected by bus to Pristina, Skopje (Shkup in Albanian) and also Tirana. The new highway from Tirana makes the trip to Albania much quicker than it was previously and the scenery along the way through the mountains of Albania is very dramatic. The best online tool for searching buses to and from Prizren is balkanviator.com.