|City and municipality|
|Albanian: Peja or Pejë
Ottoman Turkish: İpek
|District||District of Peja|
|• Mayor||Ilir Pishtani|
|• City and municipality||603 km2 (233 sq mi)|
|• Urban||14,008 km2 (5,409 sq mi)|
|• Metro||21 km2 (8 sq mi)|
|Elevation||550 m (1,800 ft)|
|• City and municipality||97,776|
|• Density||160/km2 (420/sq mi)|
|As of 2009[update]|
|Time zone||CET (UTC+1)|
|• Summer (DST)||CEST (UTC+2)|
|Website||Municipality of Peja|
Peja or Peć (Albanian: Pejë, Serbian: Пећ, Turkish: İpek) is a city in western Kosovo,[a] and the administrative centre of the same name. The municipality covers an area of 602 km2 (232 sq mi), including the city of Peja and 95 villages; it is divided into 28 territorial communities. As of 2014[update], the whole municipality has a population of approximately 97,776, of which ca. 60,000 live in the city of Peja.
- 1 Name
- 2 Geography
- 3 History
- 4 Education
- 5 Culture
- 6 Tourism
- 7 Sport
- 8 Demographics
- 9 International relations
- 10 Notable people
- 11 Gallery
- 12 Notes
- 13 References
- 14 External links
In Serbian, Peć means furnace or cave and its name is probably connected with nearby caves in the Rugova Canyon which served as hermit cells for Serbian Orthodox monks. In medieval Ragusan documents, the Serbian name of the city (Peć, lit. "furnace") is sometimes translated as Forno, meaning furnace in Italian. During Ottoman rule, it was known as Ottoman Turkish ايپك (İpek). The Albanian name's definite form is Peja and the indefinite Pejë. Other names of the city include the Latin Pescium, the Greek Episkion (Επισκιον), the Ottoman Turkish ايپك (İpek), and the formerly used form Pentza.
The city in Western Kosovo near the Rugova Canyon or Gorge.
The municipality covers an area of 602 km2 (232 sq mi), including the city of Peja and 95 villages; it is divided into 28 territorial communities. As of 2011[update], the whole municipality has a population of approximately 95,723, of which ca. 60,000 live in the city of Peja. There are two Tourist Information offices supported by the municipality, in the city, one in the center opposite the Hotel Dukagjini and one at the entrance to the Rugova Canyon.
|Climate data for Peć (1961-1990)|
|Record high °C (°F)||15.4
|Average high °C (°F)||2.8
|Daily mean °C (°F)||−0.5
|Average low °C (°F)||−3.6
|Record low °C (°F)||−24.8
|Average precipitation mm (inches)||85.9
|Average precipitation days (≥ 0.1 mm)||12.0||12.3||11.3||11.5||13.0||13.2||9.9||8.7||8.1||9.5||12.3||13.3||135.1|
|Average relative humidity (%)||81||75||68||63||64||64||60||60||67||73||81||83||70|
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||69.5||93.3||143.0||172.0||207.8||257.7||274.3||264.9||206.3||152.6||86.8||55.3||1,983.5|
|Source: Republic Hydrometeorological Service of Serbia|
Rugova is a mountainous region entered through the North-West part of the city of Peja. It is the third region of “Prokletije” (The Cursed Mountains), also known as The Albanian Alps. In 2013 it became a National Park of the Republic of Kosovo.
Rugova is known for its natural beauty and access to the mountains. Here you can find hiking, camping and backpacking as well as rock climbing and spelunking. There is an active paragliding club and a Via Ferrata (Iron Path). In winter there is skiing and snowshoeing. Rugova is also an ethnographic region, containing some interesting local dialects.
It was ranked as the fourth most important center for developing winter sports by the International Ski Federation (ISF). Furthermore, in April 2013, Peja won the award “Tourism for Tomorrow” from the World Travel and Tourism Council for the project “Peaks of the Balkans” trail, a cross-border 3-country 192 km (119 mi) circuit.
Rugova is rich in geologic forms such as caves, waterfalls, glacial lakes, high peaks, tunnels, etc. The highest peak is Hajla (2403 m), however "Qafa e Qyqes" (Cuchoo's Neck) also has an equal importance, because one can observe the whole city of Peja from it. From Guri i Kuq (1522 m) we can also observe places such as: Đeravica, Tromeđa (Three border region), Maja e Mariashit (Peak of Mariashi), Maja e Hekurave (Iron Peak), Shkëlzeni and the Lake Plav. Volujaku is also a high peak (2014 m).
Ancient and medieval history
The city is located in a strategic position on the Pećka Bistrica, a tributary of the White Drin to the east of the Prokletije. The medieval city was possibly built on the ruins of Siparant(um), a Roman municipium (town or city). It was mentioned by Ptolemy in his maps as Siparantum.
By the 6th century, the Serbs arrived and settled the area, previously depopulated by the Hunnic and Gothic invasions. The Byzantine Empire and the Bulgarian empire fought for control of Peć until it finally fell under full Serbian control. Between 1180 and 1190, Serbian Grand Prince Stefan Nemanja liberated Peć with its surrounding župa (district) of Hvosno from the Byzantine Empire, thus establishing Serbian rule over the city of Peć for next 300 years. In 1220, Serbian King Stefan Nemanjić donated Peć and several surrounding villages to his newly founded monastery of Žiča. As Žiča was the seat of a Serbian archbishop, Peć came under direct rule of Serbian archbishops and later patriarchs who built their residences and numerous churches in the city starting with the church of Holy Apostles built by archbishop Saint Arsenije I Sremac. After the Žiča monastery was burned by the Cumans (between 1276 and 1292) the seat of Serbian archbishop was transferred to a more secure location in Peć where it remained until the abolition of the Serbian Patriarchate in 1766.
The city became a major religious center of medieval Serbia under the Serbian Emperor Stefan Dušan, who made it the seat of the Serbian Orthodox Church in 1346. It retained this status until 1766, when the Patriarchate of Peć was abolished. Today, Peć holds the memory of Serbian Patriarchate. The city and its surrounding area are still revered by adherents of Serbian Orthodoxy; the city is the site of the patriarchal monastery, which is an easy walk from the city center and consists of four fresco-decorated churches, a library, and a treasury. The 14th century Visoki Dečani monastery, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, lies about 19 km (12 mi) south, in nearby Dečani.
Peja was captured by the Ottomans in 1455, and underwent major changes under their rule, including a change of name to Ipek. After the Ottoman Empire captured Peja the Sanjak of İpek was established with Mahmut Pasha Dukagjini as its first sanjakbey (lord). The Sanjak of Dukagjin had four kazas: Peja, Gjakova, Gusinje and Berane. The city was settled by a large number of Turks, many of whose descendants still live in the area, and took on a distinctly oriental character with narrow streets and old-style Turkish houses. It also gained an Islamic character with the construction of a number of mosques, many of which still remain. One of these is the Bajrakli Mosque, built by the Ottomans in the 15th century and located in the center of the city.
The city increased its political importance through the League of Peja, established in 1899 by Albanian patriots led by Haxhi Zeka. The League inherited the traditions and character of the League of Prizren to defend the rights of the Albanians and give them autonomous status within the Ottoman Empire. After an armed conflict with the Ottoman forces in 1900 the League ended its operations.
Ottoman rule came to an end in the First Balkan War of 1912-13, when Montenegro took control of the city on 28 October 1912. On 8 January 1916, during World War I, Austria-Hungary took the city. Peja was retaken in October 1918. After World War I, the city became part of Yugoslavia (at first officially called the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes). Between 1931 and 1941 the city was part of Zeta Banovina. During the World War II Peja was occupied by Albania. After the war, Peja again became part of Yugoslavia as part of Kosovo and Metohija, an autonomous province within the People's Republic of Serbia.
Relations between Serbs and Albanians, who were the majority population, were often tense during the 20th century. They came to a head in the Kosovo War of 1999, during which the city suffered heavy damage and mass killings. More than 80 percent of the total 5280 houses in the city were heavily damaged (1590) or destroyed (2774). It suffered further damage in violent inter-ethnic unrest in 2004.
Education in Peja is a system with no tuition or fees, mandatory for all children between the ages of 6-18. It consists of a nine-year basic comprehensive school (starting at age six and ending at the age of fifteen) secondary general and professional education commonly known as high school and higher education at Haxhi Zeka University of Peja. It also includes non-mandatory daycare programs for babies and toddlers and a one-year "preschool". The school year runs from early September to late June of the following year. Winter break runs from late December to early January, dividing the school year into two semesters. Peja is the only city in Kosovo that offers high school education in arts and there is also a school for the visually impaired.
The architecture in Peja show different architectural styles, from the medieval Serbian, Ottoman, Yugoslav, and contemporary architecture. Because of this there are many churches, mosques, buildings which are attraction points in the city and were built by the aforementioned influences.
Notable architectural traits of Peja include:
- Patriarchate of Peć, 13th-century Serbian Orthodox monastery, the historical seat of the Serbian Orthodox Church. It is a World Heritage Site of Serbia, under the entry "Medieval Monuments in Kosovo". It is protected now by the Kosovo police which recently replaced the Kosovo Force.
- Bazaar of Peja, Ottoman-era market in the center of the city. It was destroyed during World War II and the Kosovo War. It has been fully rebuilt.
- Bajrakli Mosque, Ottoman-built mosque in the Bazaar of Peja. It was destroyed during World War II and then rebuilt.
- Peja Hamam, Ottoman-era bath
Events and festivals
Peja is rapidly developing a significant tourist infrastructure. You can find information and maps for the "Trail of Cultural Monuments" at the Tourist Information Office as well as maps and attractions in the Rugova Gorge/Canyon and surrounding mountains. Skiing is available at the Ski Center in Bogë nearby. One of the most exciting new attractions is the Peak of the Balkans trail. The trail wanders through 3 countries with spectacular mountain views and can be well-supported by local guides and tour companies. Peja Bath is a township located in the municipality of Istok, Kosovo. To many people it is known with the name Ilixhe. It is a touristic-health center with services in Istok and in the region,highly developed infrastructure and every service needed for healthy living.
Peja is one of the more successful cities in Kosovan sport leagues. Its premier football team is KF Besa, its basketball teams is KB Peja. KB Peja is the older and more established basketball team. Additionally the city is host to a handball team, KH Besa Famiglia, a volleyball team KV BESA, a judo team Ippon, an athletic team Besa as well as a women's basketball team KB Penza. Since June 2008 Peja has also a Taekwondo Team: Tae Kwon Do Club Peja (Klubi i Tae Kwon Do-së Peja).
Peja has its aeroclub called "Aeroklub Peja", whom was founded in 1948. Last years this club is part of competitions in several countries. In June 2013 it was the organizer of "second Paragliding event" which included paragliders from Kosovo and Albania In 2014 it was the organizer of an international contest called "Peja open PARAGLIDING CUP 2014".
|Year/Population||Albanians||%||Serbs||%||Montenegrins||%||Roma (Ashkali, Egyptians)||%||Bosniaks||%||Others||%||Total|
|Source: Yugoslav Population Censuses for data through 1991, OSCE estimates for data from 1999, and 2011 census from Kosovo Republic.|
According to the 1981 census, the city had a population of 54,497; according to the 1991 census it had grown to 68,163. In 2003 the city had a population of 81,800. According to the 2011 census, around 49,000 people live in the city of Peja.
The vast majority of the inhabitants are Kosovo Albanians. Most Kosovo Serbs live in the village enclaves of Goraždevac, Belo Polje and Ljevoša. There is also a large Bosniak community in the city of Peja and in Vitomirica, while significant Roma, Ashkali and Egyptian communities reside in urban and rural areas.
- Arsenije IV Jovanović Šakabenta, Serbian Patriarch
- David Albahari, Serbian author
- Mehmet Akif Ersoy, Turkish poet, who wrote the Turkish National Anthem
- Fatos Bećiraj, Albanian football player, who plays for Dinamo Zagreb and for the Montenegrin national football team
- Faruk Begolli, Albanian actor
- Qerim Begolli, signatory of the Albanian Declaration of Independence
- Vladimir Božović, Montenegrin football player
- Đorđe Božović, Serb paramilitary leader
- Agim Çavdarbasha, former Albanian sculptor
- Agim Çeku, military commander of the KLA during the 1999 Kosovo War, minister of Security Force of Kosovo
- Majlinda Kelmendi, World and European judo champion
- Salih Gjuka, signatory of the Albanian Declaration of Independence
- Bedri bej Ipeku, Albanian politician
- Bogoljub Karić, Serbian politician and businessman
- Gezim Kasapolli, politician
- Rustemi Kreshnik, Albanian kickboxer
- Miodrag Krivokapić, Serbian actor
- Rahman Morina, Albanian politician
- Xhevdet Muriqi, former Albanian football player, part of the "Golden Generation" of KF Prishtina
- Fadil Muriqi, former Albanian football player, part of the "Golden Generation" of KF Prishtina
- Riza Sapunxhiu, Albanian politician
- Milutin Šoškić, former Serbian football player
- Dejan Stojanović, Serbian-Montenegrin writer
- Pavle Strugar, retired Montenegrin general in the Yugoslav People's Army (JNA)
- Sislej Xhafa, Albanian artist
- Haxhi Zeka, Albanian national leader
- Zhuj Selmani, League of Prizren hero
- Kosovo is the subject of a territorial dispute between the Republic of Kosovo and the Republic of Serbia. The Republic of Kosovo unilaterally declared independence on 17 February 2008, but Serbia continues to claim it as part of its own sovereign territory. The two governments began to normalise relations in 2013, as part of the Brussels Agreement. Kosovo has been recognised as an independent state by 109 out of 193 United Nations member states.
- "Komuna e Pejës - Komuna e Pejës". Kk.rks-gov.net. Retrieved 2016-01-13.
-  Archived June 6, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.
- [dead link]
- World Gazetteer: "Kosovo: largest cities and city and statistics of their population". Archived from the original on 5 Jan 2013.. – Retrieved on 12 May 2011.
- "Monthly and annual means, maximum and minimum values of meteorological elements for the period 1961-1990" (in Serbian). Republic Hydrometeorological Service of Serbia. Retrieved 2012-11-10.
- Fjalor enciklopedik shqiptar, Tiranë, Shqipëri: Akademia e Shkencave e RPSSH, 1958, p. 9
- Mirko Pak; Igor Vrišer (1980), Urban and industrial geography, Inštitut za geografija univerze Edvarda Kardelja v Ljubljani,
Prema tome, od gore spomenutih cinjenica mozemo pretpostaviti da je stara Pec bila municipij i da se u dardansko-rimsko doba nazivala Siparant, odnosno Slparantum.
- John V. A. Fine; John Van Antwerp Fine (1994), The Late Medieval Balkans: A Critical Survey from the Late Twelfth Century to the Ottoman Conquest, University of Michigan Press, p. 7, ISBN 0-472-08260-4
- [dead link]
- Prilozi za orijentalnu filologiju: Revue de philologie orientale, Volume 37. Sarajevo: Orijentalni institut u Sarajevu. 1988. p. 174. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
Poslije pada juznih dijelova Despotovine pod osmansku vlast 1455. godine, oba sjedista srpske patrijarsije, Peć i Ziča više nisu bili pod srpskom vlašću
- Altimari, Francesco; Janez Stanič (1984). Albanci (in Slovenian). Cankarjeva založba. p. 41. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
Z zavzetjem Peči je bil ustanovjjen du- kagjinski sandžak s sedežem v Peči, za sandžakbega pa postavljen Mahmut paša Dukagjini.
- Samardžić, Radovan (1983). Istorija srpskog naroda: pt. 1. Od Berlinskog kongresa do ujedinjenja 1878–1918. Srpska knjiiževna zadruga. p. 264. Retrieved 2 August 2011.
Пећки санџак је обухватао пећку, ђаковичку, гусињску и беранску (Доњи Васојевићи) казу.
- Bep Jubani et al., Historia e popullit shqiptar: për shkollat e mesme (Libri Shkollor: Pristina, 2002) 182-185.
- Mcgeary, Johanna (1999-06-28). "Crimes Of War". TIME. Retrieved 2016-01-13.
- "UNDER ORDERS: War Crimes in Kosovo - 4. March-June 1999: An Overview". Hrw.org. Retrieved 2016-01-13.
- "PLANI ZHVILLIMOR URBAN I SUB QENDRËS—BANJË" (PDF). Kk.krs-gov.net. Retrieved 2016-01-13.
- [dead link]
- http://aeroclubalbania.com/newsfeed/peja-aeroclub-kosovo-organizes-the-second-paragliding-event. Retrieved May 19, 2015. Missing or empty
- "Aeroklub Peja organizon “Peja open PARAGLIDING CUP 2014”". Gazeta Lokale. 2014-06-15. Retrieved 2016-01-13.
- "Agjencia e Statistikave të Kosovës - Â". Esk.rks-gov.net. Retrieved 2016-01-13.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Peć.|
|Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Peja.|
|3||Ferizaj (Uroševac)||Ferizaj (Uroševac)||114,087||13||Orahovac||Gjakova||59,021|
|10||Suva Reka||Prizren||62,913||20||Kosovo Polje (Fushë Kosova)||Pristina||38,265|