Visit Prizren – What to See and Do in the Cultural Capital of Kosovo

Located and landlocked in the Balkan Peninsula, Kosovo is the youngest country in Europe and the least frequented by tourists.

If you never saw a reason to go visiting Kosovo, in this article you will find plenty of them, as today I am going to tell you all you need to know about Prizren, the cultural capital of Kosovo, and to my opinion, one of the cities that might surprise you most in all of Europe (although I am sure you hardly ever heard of it!) 😉

In this guide you will find the best things to see, experiences to do and foods to try in Prizren (prepare yourself! 🙂 ), as well as a convenient map with a walking itinerary to visit the city in one day! 😀

visit prizren - what to see and do in the cultural capital of kosovo - travel guide from lost on the route

“Prizren is the City you never heard of,

that when you See it, it stuns you with Marvel!



In the middle of our van journey through the the Balkans, we found ourselves in Prizren and this for sure was one of the highlights of our whole trip.

Cultures and religions living side by side, minarets singing, chaotic streets, dirty-cheap prices, historical monuments, mountains of meat at all corners, a breath-taking mountain background and talkative local people just so happy and proud to see foreigners visiting their hometown.

If you are traveling the Balkans, Prizren is an experience you don’t want to miss, and in this article I will tell you ALL the reasons why we loved this city so much and why you should put this marvelous city on top of your travel itinerary ;D

Let’s get started! 🙂

1. Quick Facts about Prizren

Prizren, often referred to as the “Cultural Capital of Kosovo”, is in our opinion the must-go place if you are visiting Kosovo.

Locals here are extremely friendly (like in all of Kosovo!), the city is livable and it is safe to walk by feet everywhere without worries (but of course with the common sense that you would use in any other European city!).


If you are travelling with your own vehicle, Prizren is pretty easy to reach.

Distances in Kosovo are short and hardly ever there is a lot of traffic.

Just beware of potholes on the roads and respect the speed limits: police here apparently can close an eye if they see ten people on a Fiat Panda or people driving without licence,  but they seem extremely strict with speed limits (!).

Notice also that in urban centers, the maximum speed is 40km/h and not 50km/h like in most of Europe.

If instead you arrived by air or you are backpacking, the options you have to reach Prizren (except for renting a car of course!) are essentially buses or trains.

Public Buses to Prizren run from Pristina Central Bus Station every 20 minutes and take approx. 1 hour and 55 minutes. They are generally on time, you can pay your ticket on the bus and the cost is 5 Euros. 

Trains are slightly cheaper (3 Euro/ticket), but take more time and run not as frequent. Coming from Pristina, you also need to do a stopover in Klina to change trains before reaching Prizren.

You can book bus and trains tickets on the bus, or Book your Tickets Online on Omio.


Below I leave you with a brief data table summarizing in short all you need to know about the beautiful city of Prizren in Kosovo 🙂

In BrieF
Southeast Europe, Balkan Peninsula
Approximately 178.000 (as of 2021)
Albanian is the official Language, but Serbian and Turkish are also spoken
Euro (EUR)
Famous For
Prizren Fortress, Shadervan Square, Sinan Pasha Mosque, traditional Ottoman-houses and rich cultural Heritage.
Yes, the Center of Prizren is an Unesco Site
Humid subtropical climate with hot summers and cold winters
Nearest Airport
Pristina International Airport (PRN) - approx. 85km away
High Season
June - August
Low Season
November - March

2. What to See and Do in Prizren, Kosovo?

what to see in Prizren in one day by feet - guide to Prizren city

Following you’ll find our list of Top 10  things to do in Prizren.

It was not easy to choose just ten, but we believe these are the ones you surely you don’t want to miss!

At the end of the article, in the curiousities section, we leave you also some additional honorable mentions 😉 

Let’s start exploring Prizren!


The Hike is Steep but Short, and the Top View over the city is worth the sweat!

prizrent fortress - beautiful drone view with mountains in the background - UNESCO

The Prizren Fortress, located on a hill right next to the city center, is the most popular tourist destination in town and surely it was one of the highlights of our visit!

Dating back to the Byzantine era, the fortress has been used in the century for storing weaponry and to defend Prizren from invaders. 

Today, the Fortress is open to the public and it offers a breath-taking panoramic view of the city of Prizren and the surrounding mountains.

During our visit, we found the Fortress extremely clean and well maintained which made the visit even more pleasurable (in most of Kosovo there is still an enormous problem with waste disposal and is not that easy to find things clean!). 

To access the Prizren Fortress, you don’t have to pay any ticket as it is entirely free (yeah!) 🙂

The only thing you need to do, is take the short (but steep!) hike up the hill.

The hiking path to the Fortress starts just behind the Sinan Pasha Mosque and it takes about 10 minutes to walk if you’re in good physical conditions: on the way there you can find a gorgeous painting and a cute little cheap bar where you can get a drink and admire all Prizren from above! (photos below!)

Here following I leave you a gallery of some more photos we took of the Fortress 🙂




The Majority of Prizren’s Population is Muslim, and Mosques are scattered all around the City

minarets of the mosques in prizren, kosovo

The majority of Prizren’s population is muslim, so it’s no wonder that the city hosts such a great number of Mosques. 

If you are coming from a Muslim country, this point will be no wonder for you. 

Otherwise, you will be just so surprised to hear all minarets singing at the same time five times a day.

If you’re not familiar with Muslim religion, you just neet to know that the “minarets” are those tall, slender towers often found near mosques, which are used to call Muslims to prayer.

Muslims pray five times a day: at dawn, noon, mid-afternoon, sunset, and nightfall. The call to prayer, made from the minaret, serves as a reminder to stop what one is doing and pray.

If you see the skyline of Prizren from above, you will see minarets popping up in all directions: I was able to count 25 of them, but I am sure there are many more!

The best place to hear the minarets’ call is surely the way to the Prizren Fortress, as from above you can hear sounds coming from more directions. It’s a great experience that lasts few minutes, but surely something interesting to witness 🙂




An Ottoman Mosque Built in 1615, located on the Main Street of Prizren

gorgeous mosque of prizren

The Sinan Pasha Mosque of Prizren is an Ottoman-era mosque located in the historic city of Prizren. 

It was built in the 17th century by the Ottoman architect Mimar Sinan, who is widely regarded as the greatest architect of the Ottoman Empire.

The mosque features a distinctive blend of Ottoman and Byzantine architectural styles and is one of the iconic landmarks of the city. 

Visiting the mosque outside of praying times is possible and it’s free (yeah! 😉 ), although shoulders should be covered and women need to cover their hair too.

Behind the Mosque there is also a garden with some arabic souvenirs shops and tables to sit and relax while watching the giant Mosque from behind.


Around the Bridge develops the city center, frequented by Tourists and Locals

stone bridge in prizren, kosovo, on a sunny day

Just hundred meters in front of the Mosque, we arrive now to the Stone Bridge, which connect the two banks of the Bistrica river: the touristic city center full of bars to the more “local” side of the city.

This bridge, cool to see but nothing crazy in my opinion, is the oldest one in Prizren and it is considered by locals as one of the icons of Prizren and a symbol of the city’s rich cultural heritage and Ottoman history.

We noticed indeed this little bridge is represented on many souvenir magnets of Prizren. After taking a picture of it, we moved on with our journey into the city 🙂


Kosovo doesn’t officially have police forces, so NATO is in charge of mantaining order in the country.

nato monument in prizren, kosovo

At first, when we saw this monument from afar we thought it was a compass rose. 

Then, coming closer, we were quiet stupified to find a monument of such kind!

Donated in July 2022 by the Italian Nato Army, this monument is not a compass rose as it may seem to a distracted eye, but it is indeed a sculpture of the NATO logo (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) in 3D, surrounded by 30 NATO flags representing the 30 countries members of NATO.

To understand why such a monument is built here, we need a bit of history!

Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in 2008, but Serbia never officially recognized Kosovo as an indipendent country. Funny is, that before Kosovo, we visited Serbia and it was interesting to notice that they still sell magnets of Prizren and Pristina with the Serbian Flag on top!

Because of this situation, Kosovo is not allowed to own some key ministeries, including the defence ministeries and police forces. Exactly, you heard it right: in Kosovo there is no official police (although there is an unofficial “militia”), and order within the country is mostly kept by the NATO army.

Interesting to know: you can see the installation from any side, and the logo will always look the same!


Built between 1573 and 1574, the Hammam of Prizren is a Building with a truly Strange Architecture

gazi mehmed pasha hammam in prizren, kosovo

Something that catches the eye.

Not far from the Sinan Pasha Mosque, there is an old Ottoman hammam, also known as “Turkish Bath”.

When we visited Prizren (2023), the place was under renovation, with no clear date by which it will be completed.

Even from outside though, the building of the Hammam caught our attention: with smaller and larger round domes, with tiny windows installed on top and a mix of bricks and metal, is surely something curious to see that we never saw before; a little piece of the Ottoman domination of Kosovo.


To Discover True everyday life in Kosovo and local Custom, it’s lovely to get lost in the city alleys 🙂 

local market of prizren

The touristic part of the city is wonderful, but getting lost in the tiny streets and alleys of the outskirts is not less of an experience!

Prizren is not only it’s monuments, but also a vibrant city that lives with agriculture, artisans and small businesses

Walking the inner streets, it’s an experience that shows how life in Kosovo truly is. 

Some streets are clean, most still suffer the plague of rubbish that afflicts most of Kosovo.

You can find incredible dirt cheap bargains for so many products on one side, while on the other there are modern shops with the same prices of Milan.

Special experiences we had:

  • There is also one street specialized in just bride dresses: On the road between the Hammam and the Nato monument, there is a road where every other door is a bride dress shop! The dresses are incredible, so principesque that seem straight out of a fairytail. If you have some marriage coming up, you might want to check out this incredible road: you can find incredible dresses, accessories and even crowns (!) for definitely low prices compared to all of Europe. We were stunned by how rich some dresses could look, in a country still very poor as Kosovo.
  •  If you like parfums, there’s a shop that makes any parfum in front of you! An Italian NATO soldier we met on our way to Prizren recommended us to visit this shop, so we went there! It’s a tiny shop in a supermarket called Uje Dukati, where you can buy famous parfumes for a fraction of the cost (like 10-15 Euro/100ml). It’s an experience, because after you choose the parfume you want, the guy at the desk takes out a huge syringe and makes the parfumes just in front of you! As fragrances are one of my secret passions, I can tell that the parfumes we tried smell 100% like the originals! (Goes without saying, that now our van is full of fragrances ahah!) 😉
  • Food, Food and more Food! Well…in Prizren there is so much food that I believe this topic deserves its own paragraph ;D




Mountains of Flame-Grilled Meat, sweet Arabic cakes, Kebabs and Cheap Prices will make fall in love with Prizren 😉

eating in prizren street-food yummy

Incredibly cheap, incredibly tasty.

Coming from Italy, when speaking about food Prizren reminded me vaguely about Naples.

Walking in the street, it’s impossible not to think about what you would like to try next: arabic cakes everywhere, flame-grilled meat cooked in the Qebaptorias (the local “Kebab Houses” on the side of the streets, traditional bakeries (called “Furras”) and local Kosovar cheese shops are just some of the things you will see and want to try in Prizren!

Prices are dirt cheap: we ate huge hamburgers for one euro, plates of Cevapi (traditional Balkani Meat) for 2 Euros. Some arabic cakes for 50Cents. If you like eating, in here you don’t have excuses.

Personally, what I recommend you to try is the meat: so fresh, so tasty, it’s like sending your mouth to the moon and back! As words are not enough to describe the culinary journey that we did in Prizren, I leave you here just few photos for you to get an idea 😉




People here don’t meet tourists as often as in other European cities, and when they do, they feel Proud!

kosovar people, in a bakery in prizren

There are not many tourists in Kosovo. Actually very few.

Locals though, when they notice you are a foreigners seem to show a lot of interest.

In our experience, we found ourselves so welcomed in Kosovo as we never did in any other country!

It was just common for people to stop us just to greet us and ask where we were coming from, give us tips on what to visit, telling us a bit about the history of the places and recommending us what to eat.

Kosovar people are proud of their identity and they also feel honoured when they see that people wants to go there, in this tiny country often disdained and forgotten, just to visit their country and their culture.

My tip for you, it’s just to be open to interactions with locals. Occasionally there is some people asking for charity, but most of them want nothing back in return for their kindness, they are just happy to interact with foreigners coming from abroad.


High Mountains, Ski slopes and Nature. Here everything seems so relaxed it’s incredible!

sharr mountains national park near prizren, kosovo

Are you up for a day-trip?

Not far away from Prizren (about 40 minutes) there is another highlight destinations of Kosovo: the Sharr Mountains National Park, a protected area that boasts an incredible array of biodiversity.

Visiting the Sharr Mountains National Park is a great way to experience the natural beauty and cultural richness of Kosovo: in winter they are covered in snow and it’s possible to rent some skis and try the slopes; while in the good season it’s a mountain paradise for hiking lovers and for camping passionates (wild camping in Kosovo is tolerated, as there are basically no campings for RVs) 🙂

If you are looking for a unique travel experience, a trip to the Sharr Mountains National Park from Prizren is sure to be a memorable one ;D

Ah, I almost forgot…like almost anything in Kosovo, there is no Entrance Fee for the national park 😉

3. Visit Prizren by Feet in One Day – Map and Itinerary

Visit Prizren in one day - itinerary and map

Following, you find a Walking Itinerary of Prizren that puts together all the main attractions seen until now.

One full day is enough to see most of Prizren, although I would recommend you, if you have the time, to spend at least 2 days in the city to enjoy the slow paced life of Kosovo and also to discover the incredible culinary culture of the city 😉

5. Conclusion – Visit Prizren: The Cultural Capital of Kosovo!

Lost On The Route blogger on top of Prizren - View from the Fortress - Best place for photos and sunset!

In this article we discovered together the gorgeous city of Prizren in Kosovo. 

What do you think about the article? Have you ever been to Prizren before? Do you have any personal experience or advice you would like to recommend to other readers?

Let me know in the comments below! I always enjoy hearing others’ opinions and have a brief chat 🙂

As always thank you for reading, and see you in the next article 🙂


Traveling to Albania: Essential Tips for a Memorable Trip




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