Pristina city

Capital of Kosovo: Everything you need to know about Pristina!

Looking for a special destination and wondering about the capital of Kosovo?

I’m thrilled to write about Pristina! It’s a great, and mostly unexplored, jewel in the middle of the Balkans. Even though it’s not as well-known as some other European destinations, it’s slowly getting more attention. So, how about the capital of Kosovo?

I visited Pristina a while ago and I was really surprised about the city as I didn’t really know what to expect. But I can say that I had an amazing time here.

This city has a rich past, amazing architecture, and a lively culture, all of which make it a fascinating place to visit. The goal of this post is to shine a light on the interesting stories and places that make Pristina a great place.

Let’s go and let’s start exploring!

What is the capital of Kosovo?

Pristina, which people sometimes spell as Prishtina, is not only the capital of Kosovo, but also its beating heart. You’ll find Pristina in the northeastern part of the country.

But Pristina felt like a special place to me. It shows how strong the country is by combining its rich past with its bright and optimistic future.

capital of Kosovo - The Newborn Monument
The Newborn Monument

From the old streets with cobblestones to the new buildings and bridges, every part of the city will show you something new and interesting.

What is Prishtina known for?

Pristina is Kosovo’s capital and biggest city. It’s a very lively city with a long and complex history that’s known for a few important things:

  • Historical and Religious Sites: Pristina has a number of important ancient sites. The Imperial Mosque (or Xhamia e Mbretit), which was built in the 15th century, is a well-known landmark.

    The Gračanica Monastery is close by in a Serbian enclave near Lipjan. It is a UNESCO World Heritage site and a great example of a medieval building.
  • Bear Sanctuary: The Bear Sanctuary is just outside of the city. It is a safe place for bears who have been kept in captivity and harmed. It shows how hard Kosovo has worked to protect its native animals.
  • Bustling Café Scene: There is a lively café scene in Pristina. The city is full of coffee shops, which makes it a popular place for both locals and visitors to hang out, talk, or work. Especially in the Dardania neighborhood, the streets are lined with cafes.
  • Newborn Monument: This is a symbolic monument that was presented on February 17, 2008, the day Kosovo declared its independence. It is painted over every year with new designs and words.
  • National Library: This is one of the most interesting places you’ll see in the city. Its strange form is an interesting piece of architecture. With more than a million books and a building wrapped in a metal net, it’s like a mix of the old and the new.
capital of Kosovo - Architecture of the National Library
Architecture of the National Library
  • Cultural Festivals: The city has many cultural events, such as the Prishtina International Film Festival (PriFest) and the DAM Festival, which celebrates both traditional and modern music.
  • Mother Teresa Square: You’ll find this square in the middle of Pristina. It is named after the well-known humanitarian who was of Albanian descent. Near the square, there is also a statue of Mother Teresa.
  • Heritage and Museums: The Kosovo Museum in Pristina gives you a deep look into the country’s history by showing artifacts from the prehistoric, Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman eras.
  • Diverse Cuisine: Pristina has a lot of dining choices, including both traditional Balkan food and food from around the world. Some local foods you have to try are flija, tave kosi, and cevapi!
  • Vibrant Nightlife: If you love to go out at night, Pristina has a variety of bars, clubs, and places with live music that suit your tastes and interests. You’ll definitely have a great time when going out.

Pristina is a city that is quickly becoming more modern and developing, but it still has a lot of history and culture. It was one of my most fascinating places to visit in the Balkans because of its historic and modern mix.

Pristina Population

Pristina has changed a lot over the past few decades, both in terms of how the city has grown and changed as well as how its society has changed. Here’s a closer look at the people who live in Pristina:

  • Size and growth of the population: There are over 200,000 people living in Pristina. But if you count all the areas and neighborhoods around the city, the total number is a bit higher.
  • Ethnic Composition: Pristina’s people are mostly ethnic Albanians, who make up the vast majority of the city’s population. In the past, the city has been home to many different kinds of people, such as Serbs, Turks, Bosniaks, Gorani, and Romani.

    But after the Kosovo War in 1999, there were a lot fewer people who were not Albanian, especially Serbs.
  • Religion: The majority of the people in Pristina are Muslim, which means that Islam is the main religion here. Around the city, there are many mosques.

    Due to its multiethnic history, however, there are also signs of Orthodox Christianity, especially in the Serbian community, as well as other religions.
  • Demographics: Kosovo has one of the youngest populations in Europe, and you can feel this in Pristina. This group of people has had a big impact on the city’s atmosphere, making it more lively and active.

    The young people in Pristina are also a big part of its growing tech scene, arts scene, and culture movements.
View on Pristina
View on Pristina
  • Diaspora influence: During the troubled 1990s, many Kosovars left the area, which led to a large diaspora, especially in Western European countries.

    This diaspora is a key part of Pristina’s modern growth, both economically (through remittances) and artistically (because they bring back ideas from where they live now).
  • Trends in Urbanization: Since Pristina is the capital city and the main economic hub of Kosovo, people from the villages and smaller towns have been moving there in large numbers.

    People are moving because they want better schooling, jobs, and living conditions, which is causing cities to grow quickly. Because of this, the city keeps growing and changing.

The people of Pristina are a mix of history, ethnicity, and looking to the future. Its young people and everlasting traditions make it a city that is always changing and growing.

Tours in Pristina

Yes, love to tell you a bit more about tours in Pristina! The city has some great tours that will take you through the city with some of the best highlights and some other local secrets.

It’s a city with many layers that kind of begs to be explored. Choose walking tours if you want to feel the pulse of the city as you wander through historical places, museums, and local markets. You can click on the link below to book your tour:

Book your Pristina Full-Day Tour here!

Cultural tours will show you the heart and soul of Pristina through its art and theater scenes. You can click on the link below to book your tour:

Book Your Pristina Half-Day Walking Tour here!

I’m sure that you’ll have an amazing experience when you do these tours as you will explore the city in the best possible way!

Capital of Kosovo: FAQs

The information below is related to the capital of Kosovo and will give you some more great insights!

Is it worth going to Pristina?

Absolutely! As the city and cultural hub of Kosovo, Pristina offers you a unique experience. Here are some reasons why is definitely worth to go to Pristina:

  • Unique History: Pristina is like a window into a long and sometimes turbulent past, from ancient civilizations to the rule of the Ottomans to the present day. This hirsot can be seen in the architecture, museums, and other landmarks.
  • Affordability: Pristina is not too expensive compared to many other European capital cities. Whether you’re eating out, or looking for a place to stay, you’ll often find that you’ll get a lot of value for your money.
  • Central Location: Pristina is a great place to start exploring other parts of Kosovo, like the beautiful Rugova Valley, the ancient city of Prizren, and the stunning Mirusha Waterfalls. You can even plan a day-trip to Skopje in North Macedonia!
The city of Prizren
The city of Prizren
  • Hospitality: The Kosovar people are known for their warm welcome. I felt that the people that I met in Pristina were very nice and friendly, which makes your time here a lot nicer!
  • Education and Learning: If you are interested in geopolitics or the history of the Balkans, going to Pristina will give you a first-hand look at the problems and aspirations of one of Europe’s youngest countries.

Even though Pristina may not be as well-known as some other European capital cities, I can honestly say that it’s a real, off-the-beaten-path place to visit.

The city is a mix of old and new customs, cultures, and ambition, which makes it an interesting place to visit if you want to see something different.

Is one day in Pristina enough?

Well, you might get a glimpse of Pristina’s life in a day, but to get to the heart of it, you’ll need a bit more time. At least, that’s what I would advise.

If you give yourself two to three days, you’ll be able to wander its streets at your own pace, try its wide range of foods, and get to know its people. It will give you a better impression of the city.

Is it safe to travel to Pristina Kosovo?

Most of the time, Pristina is very welcoming to visitors and makes sure you’re safe. But as with any destination, it’s best to stay aware and take basic safety measures.

I never experienced anything bad or unsafe during my time in Pristina and also not during my whole stay in the country of Kosovo. I even felt that the Kosovar people were very proud to show their country to you.

capital of Kosovo - Mural of former President Rugova
Mural of former President Rugova

You can be really sure that the friendly locals will go out of their way to make you feel at home during your stay.

Does Pristina have good nightlife?

After dark, Pristina changes into a great place to have some fun. The bars bring the city to life with music that ranges from traditional beats to modern rhythms.

There are some cozy and classy bars in the city where you can hang out and enjoy the city’s nightlife. And especially here, it’s not just about the places, but also about the people.

The city’s young people are what makes it buzz, and they make sure that every night in Pristina is a memorable one.

What is the famous street in Pristina?

Mother Teresa Square and the pedestrian street next to it are the center of city life in Pristina. This area is always busy, both day and night.

The square in Pristina
The square

There are often street performers, full of cafes, artisan stalls with souvenirs, and spontaneous art projects.

This makes it a place where you’ll see different cultures meet and shows you how dynamic Pristina is.

What language is spoken in Pristina?

Even though most people in Pristina speak Albanian, the city’s language scene is as diverse as its people.

The city is a melting pot of languages, with Serbian and Turkish influences as well as hints of Bosnian.

The younger generation, who often speak English quite well, bridges the gap and makes it easier for you to start a conversation with locals.

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    The Wrap-Up: Capital of Kosovo

    To be honest, it might not be fair to Pristina to try to describe it in a few words. It’s a fascinating place to visit in the Balkans. It’s more than just a capital; it’s a living, breathing thing with stories written into its very structure.

    The mix of a turbulent past with its young people full of ambitions nowadays, makes Pristina a special place that will continue to develop in the upcoming years!

    So why just read about it when you can actually visit the capital of Kosovo? I know one thing for sure, Pristina is ready to welcome you!

    If you’re looking for more information about Kosovo in general, you can check out my other posts about fun facts about Kosovo and best cities to visit in Kosovo!

    Your restless voyager,


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