ABOUT ALBANIA TOUR (SHKODRA & KRUJE)
MH Travel agency organizes Albania Tour where the guest can visit city of Shkoder and legendary historical town Kruje. Tour is organized in a way that you don’t feel the pressure because of a long ride, but you can enjoy every single minute spent on it. As our wish was to provide our guests with quality historical and cultural knowledge of Albania we didn’t include a visit to Tirana. Guests that want to visit the Albania’s capital can take our other tour organized by MH Travel Agency which includes only Tirana.
This tour will give you the real experience of Albania. If you don’t have enough time to stay in Albania for a couple of days but you wish to visit, we strongly recommend to choose this tour. We guarantee you will be delighted.
We start from Kotor at 8:00 am, taking guests from Budva at 8:45 and then we drive to Podgorica where we will pick up guests at 10:00 am. Half an hour later we will be on Božaj border crossing, from where we will drive to the nearest Albanian city Skhoder. While travelling to Skhoder, you will see the slops of the Prokletije mountain massif also known as South Alps on your left side, and on your right you will have the view on Skadar Lake. It is one the oldest and most historical places in Albania, as well as an important cultural and economic centre. When we arrive in Shkoder we will make a breakfast break in national restaurant and then we will visit the city center and Rosafa Castle.
After breakfast we will walk down the most popular pedestrian street known as Pjaca (KoleIdromeno St. in the center of Shkodra), full of cafes and shops. That street got a name of KoleIdromeno (1860-1939) who was a famous Albanian sculptor, photographer, architect and engineer. At the beginning of the street you will see the Mother Theresa monument (Nene Teresa), which is one of the newest statues in Shkoder. Mother Teresa was a Catholic nun, who was born in neighboring Macedonia to an Albanian family. In 1979 she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. On the left of Mother Teresa monument the large Ebu Beker Mosque, which is the focal point of the local Muslim community, dominates Skhoder's city centre. This mosque is also known as Al-Zamil Mosque; it was built in 1995 with funds from Saudi Arabia and Egypt. This mosque has been extensively renovated in 2008. Across the mosque is statue of Luigj Gurakuqi (1879-1925) who was born in Shkoder. He became a poet and a nationalist. Luigj Gurakuqi was given the titles of Hero i Popullit (Hero of the People) and Meseus i Popullit( Teacher of the People). The university of his hometown Shkoder was named after him.
After visiting the center of the town we go to the Rozafa Castle from where there is a beautiful view on the entire region, the city of Skoder and the river Buna (Bojana). The Rozafa Castle is located on a small hill about 2,5 km southwest of Shkoder city centre. The Rosafa Castle was probably founded by Illyrians. Later it was rebuilt several times by Romans, Venetians and Ottomans. The castle ruins consist of 3 courtyards and a few buildings. The oldest still standing structure on the castle grounds is the St. Stephen's Church, which dates back to 1319. One of the main reasons to visit the castle is its location on a 130 m high hilltop, which offers panoramic views of Shkoder, the Buna and Drini rivers as well as the southern end of Lake Shkodra.Next to the Rozafa castle is located multiple-domed Lead Mosque (Xamia e Plumbit) which dates back to 1773, when it was built in Ottoman style by Memet Pasha Bushati. The name Lead Mosque derives from the material which was used for the roof and the cupolas. In 1948 the mosque was declared a Cultural Monument which probably also saved it from destruction during the communist years. In 1967 the minaret was destroyed by a lighting.
After Shkoder we go to Kruje located 30 km before Tirana between Mount Kruje and the Ishemriver. Kruje is an important touristic center in Albania. The name "Krujë" is thought to have originated from the word "front-head" ( water source), because Kruja has many sources. This area has given to the Albania's history, the name of Albania, the first state-Albanian feudal principality of Arber, and of course Albanian national hero, Skanderbeg (chosen as the capital of its state Kruja).
The area of Kruja was included in dominions of Kastrioti family precisely by Skanderbeg's father, John Kastrioti. Kruja will serve again as the center of Arber and in the XV century, will be the center of attention of all European nations threatened by the Ottoman invasion. Three times Kruja was surrounded by the Ottomans (1450, 1466, 1467) with a large army. The city was besieged by two of the most powerful sultans of the Ottoman Empire (Sultan Murad II and his son Mehmed II) However, Kruja castle resisted and fell under Ottoman rule in 1478, ten years after the death of Skanderbeg. After we arrive in Kruje we will visit the old town, museum, after which our guests can buy some of the souvenirs on the traditional bazaar.
In Museum of Skanderbeg Kastrioti in the Old Town Kruje, you will see a lot of exhibits about the biggest Albanian hero, hundreds of his works, publications, paintings, sculptures, documents, weapons, workroom, library, etc. Some documents have certified the war and Skanderbeg efforts for freedom, not only in defense of Albania (Albëria in that time), but all of Western and Southwest Europe, which was threatened seriously by Ottoman invasion. The city of Kruja is rich in monuments of culture and ethnography, because of its history, is even an area rich in archeological sites. Kruja is declared "hero city", because it carries a priceless value and is one of the most famous Albanian cities in the world, even during the period of communist isolation. The Castle of the city and its historical museum, are surely two of the most important, including the characteristic cobble stone street of the Old Bazar, the Ethnographic Museum, etc. Old Bazar has 70 traditional shops where you can buy: copper, wool, jewelry, fez production, and a lot of souvenirs.
Kruja is today a small town, whose economy is based mainly on personal and small business development in crafts today's tourism industry. However, the city is pleasant and gives you a feeling that you went back in time. After we finish the visit of Kruje we will be heading back to Podgorica, Budva and Kotor
BOOKING AND PAYMENT
Tour ticket can be bought on-line via BOOK NOW! option, or directly at the reception of Montenegro Hostel Budva (address: Vuka Karadzica 12, next to cafe Greco, located in the old town of Budva). and Montenegro Hostel Kotor (address: Stari Grad 333, next to the restaurant Regina del Gusto located in the old town of Kotor) and Montenegro Hostel Pogorica (address: Radoja Jovanovica 52, located in the Old Town of Podgorica named Stara Varos).The last on-line booking is possible to make till 21:00 (9 pm) the day before departure. After that time ticket can be bought only at the reception of Montenegro Hostel Budva or Montenegro Hostel Kotor or Montenegro Hostel Podgorica.
Receptions are open from 8 am till midnight. Guests can purchase the tour ticket at the reception of the hostel up to 23:00 the day before departure.
Purchasing ticket directly in the mini-bus is not possible.
Tour is organized by air conditioned cars or mini bus.
Licensed tour guide on English language.
Price doesn't include
Entrance fee for Rozafa Castle of 2 euro
Entrance fee for Museum in Kruje of 2 euro
Standard breakfast costs from 5 till 7 euro
Standard lunch costs from 8 till 12 euro
Guests can use their own food and drink (breakfast and lunch are not mandatory).
Guests who want to bring their luggage on the tour and finish the tour in another city ( Kotor or Budva or Podgorica) can easily do that. There is no luggage fee.
Before you decide to purchase the tour ticket check our itinerary and terms and conditions.
Hope you will enjoy on our tour:)
MH Travel Agency Team