When visiting, most tourists stick to the most popular places in Kosovo, or the three Ps, as I’ll call them: Prizren, Peja, and Prishtina. While these cities provide unique experiences, Kosovo has many other places worth visiting. Every municipality listed below has its own appeal that is just waiting to be explored and appreciated. Beyond the famous cities, Kosovo has hidden gems ranging from picturesque landscapes and outdoor activities to historical landmarks and cultural heritage. Other than the three Ps, here is a brief summary of each of the other cities:
Deçan is a must-see if you enjoy mountains and magnificent surroundings. This lovely city is ideal for trekking, especially in the fall when the mountains are ablaze with vivid autumn hues. Don’t miss out on seeing the majestic Monastery of Deçan, a UNESCO World Heritage site with outstanding medieval frescoes.
For those seeking tranquility and an escape from bustling city life, Dragash is an ideal retreat. Located near Prizren, this peaceful town offers hiking opportunities amidst pristine landscapes. In the winter, the area transforms into a heaven for skiing enthusiasts, with its snow-covered slopes and exhilarating runs.
Ferizaj should be on your radar if you enjoy street art, murals, and a thriving nightlife. While the city can appear chaotic at times, it has a vibrant street art culture and an enthusiastic vibe after the sun goes down. For a one-of-a-kind experience, explore the bright murals covering the walls and immerse yourself in the local nightlife.
Fushë Kosova, a lively municipality just outside Pristina, is frequently regarded as merely a suburb of the capital. The Kosovo Railway Museum, on the other hand, is a must-see for all railway aficionados.
When visiting Kosovo, Gjakova is an absolute must-see. Begin your adventure at Çarshia, an area rebuilt after its destruction during the Kosovo War. There are lovely cafes and tiny businesses with interesting decorating here. Don’t miss out on Mother Ferdonija’s museum house, which serves as a sad reminder of the horrors of the 1999 war. Explore the Clock Tower and the Tekke, and go beyond the city to see the neighboring caves and the breathtaking Ura e Fshejt.
Gjilan has a fantastic culinary scene with excellent cuisine and desserts at a variety of cafés and restaurants. Exit town and head to Pogragja village, where you may climb to the castle or zipline over the Morava River. Kimi is the place to go for delicious cakes.
Gllogoc, or Drenas as it is well called among the Kosovo Albanian population, is not a frequent stop on the itinerary of either locals or tourists. This little town is home to the “Ferronikeli” mine and smelter, which employed over 2000 people prior to the war and subsequent privatization. However, one structure that appears to attract everyone’s attention is the Church of Komoran, which is positioned on a hill with a beautiful outlook.
The primary attractions of this Kosovo city are the Graçanica Monastery and the ancient ruins of Ulpiana. With its stunning frescoes, the Graçanica Monastery offers a look into the country’s rich cultural and religious legacy.
Hani i Elezit
Hani i Elezit, located on the border with North Macedonia, was critical during the Kosovo War in 1999. Visit the Bllaca 99 memorial to pay your respects and get insight into this difficult time of history. It commemorates the refugees who were forced to flee their homes and seek refuge in North Macedonia (then known as FYROM).
Istog is well renowned for its wonderful fish, which can be found at their famous restaurant “Trofta,” but hikers may also reach the source of the Drini i bardhë (White Drin). Istog, surrounded by mountains, is a perfect area to get away from the hustle and bustle of Prishtina and enjoy the local fish.
Junik is a haven for nature lovers and thrill seekers. Explore the adjacent mountains and pay a visit to the Koshare memorial, which commemorates the Koshare Battle, which took place in 1999 between the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) and the Jugoslav Army (JNA) to breach the border between Kosovo and Albania. Discover the charm of Junik’s historic stone houses (kulla) and the villagers’ friendly welcome. Don’t pass up the chance to sample the local cuisine.
Kaçanik, a little city nestled among stunning scenery, is a tranquil hideaway for nature lovers. This hidden gem, surrounded by rolling hills and abundant foliage, is ideal for leisurely excursions and peaceful walks. Immerse yourself in the area’s natural beauty, breathe in the fresh air, and enjoy the panoramic views. Kaçanik is also renowned as the location where the Kosovo Constitution was declared on September 7, 1990.