Tourism in Kosovo
Tourism in Kosovo[a] is characterized by Kosovar cuisine, architecture, religious heritage, unique traditions, and natural landscapes. Despite being in its infancy and overshadowed by the instability following the war, and the 2008 Kosovo declaration of independence,The New York Times recently included Kosovo on the list of 41 Places to go in 2011. In the same year, Kosovo saw a jump of about 40 places on the Skyscanner flight search engine which rates global tourism growth.
Tourism is safe and considering mountains surrounding the country, you can hike, climb or ski during the winter. There are lakes and rivers and farms with beautiful landscapes. Also the old architecture from Illyrian ancestors makes it even more tempting to visit. An interesting and unique experience is visiting old stoned fortresses where people used to live, which now are under tourists' services.[opinion]
The Statistical Agency of the Republic of Kosovo published hotel statistics on a quarterly basis beginning in 2008. The reported number of hotel nights spent by non-residents was between 10,000 and 13,000 per quarter in 2008; between 14,000 and 24,000 in 2009; between 16,000 and 22,000 in 2010 and 11,000 and 22,000 in 2011.
The following table illustrates the number of non resident visitors according to country of origin recorded in 2011. The data was issued by the Statistical Office of the Republic of Kosovo. 
Issues affecting tourism
- If visiting the region from Serbia, no exit stamp is issued when entering Kosovo.
- Residents of Serbia including frequent visitors to the country can get matching entry and exit stamps; this would mean backtracking and leaving through Serbia via a regular border crossing point, but the traveller should avoid mentioning Kosovo.
- The traveler can request the Kosovar authorities to not stamp the passport at the border.
- Citizens of former Yugoslav republics may use a national ID card at border crossings with no stamping involved.
||This section may stray from the topic of the article. (June 2013)|
Some of the most visited cities include:
- Pristina — the capital of Kosovo. Pristina accommodates the grave of Kosovo's president Ibrahim Rugova. The Gërmia and the Italian park are the most visited parks in the city. Other attractions in the capital include: the Kosovo museum, the clock tower and the Jashar Pasha Mosque.
- Gjakova — a well known city for its nightlife and historical monuments. Monuments include: mosques,churches,bridges, museums, landscape and hospitality.
- Peja— a city along the Bistritza river. It is located near the Prokletije or Albanian Alps, which are also known as Bjeshkët e Namuna. The center of the city is marked by different craftsmen shops, such as tailors, goldsmiths, leather tanners etc. Old mosques like the Bajrakli mosque and the Orthodox church, are part of the historical monuments of the city.
- Prizren — a town with a well-preserved Ottoman quarter, and a Roman-built castle. Prizren is located on the Prizreni River and is near the Sharr Mountains. One of the monuments to see in Prizren are the Kalaja Fortress as well as the St. Maria Levishka Church.
- Novo Brdo- a municipality in central Kosovo. Novo Brdo offers its visitors various hiking and mountain-biking possibilities. Some aercheological localities of the medieval town include: the medieval castle, religious buildings, cemeteries etc.
- Ulpiana- an ancient city of Illyrian Dardania from the 2nd century in the Balkan peninsula. It is known to have been re-constructed by emperor Justinian I.
.Via Ferrata Ari Is a metallic structire in vertical rock which enables people to climb the wall without being climbers. Via Ferrata date as structure from world war one. The one in Peja was built by Marimangat e Pejes in 2013 and 2014 with the support of donors. It has more than 100 stairs and the whole trip is around 3 kilometers.
- White Drin Waterfall - located in the north of Peć. The White Drin is the largest spring in Kosovo.
- Rugova Canyon - located in the North West of Peja, with extremely steep walls reaching possibly up to 300 meters.
- Brezovica Ski Resort - a ski resort with an old infrastructure but great slopes, located in Šar Mountains National Park in Southern Kosovo.
- Šar Mountains National Park- proclaimed in 1993 within the temporary boundaries of 39,000 hectare in South Western Kosovo. The Šar Mountains are a mountain range that border the Republic of Macedonia. The Šar Mountains are the home of many animal species, such as: bears, wolves, deers, and foxes.
- Prokletije National Park- a proposed national park since 2001 in the area of the Prokletije Mountain Range in Western Kosovo and part of the larger Dinaric Alps.
- Gadimë Cave- an underground marmoreal cave in the village of lower Gadime  near Lipljan that was discovered in 1969 by Ahmet Diti. It is famous for its Stalagmites and Stalactites.
- Medieval Monuments in Kosovo, a combined UNESCO World Heritage Site including:
- Patriarchate of Peć, this complex of four churches was built between 1230 and 1330 by the Serbian Nemanjić dynasty. The church was the seat of the Serbian Patriarchate since 1302. It is considered to be of great national importance to Serbs and Serbia.
- Visoki Dečani, and one of the most important monasteries of the Serbian Orthodox Church in Kosovo. It was built from 1307- 1328.
- Gračanica monastery- was completed in 1321 by the Serbian King Milutin. The monastery is one of the most beautiful examples of Serbian medieval (14th century) ecclesiastical architecture. This is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
- Our Lady of Ljeviš
- Gjakova Old Bazaar, dating back to the 17th century. It was reconstructed after the war.
- Tourism in Pristina
- Geography of Kosovo
- Culture of Kosovo
- Hiking in Kosovo
- Medieval Monuments in Kosovo
- Cuisine of Kosovo
- Architecture of Kosovo
- Municipalities of Kosovo
Notes and references
|a.||^ 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.|
- "The 41 Places to Go in 2011". The New York Times. 7 January 2011.
- Kosovo improves on tourism. June 15, 2011
- http://www.visitkosova.org/ VisitKosova.org Portal
- http://beinkosovo.com/en/what-to-see-in-major-cities-in-kosovo#-peja Cite error: Invalid
<ref>tag; name "Major_Cities" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page).
- "Rural Tourism in Novo Brdo". tourism-novobrdo.com. Retrieved 2013-02-23.
- "Southeast Europe- People and Culture". http://www.southeast-europe.eu. Retrieved 2013-02-23. External link in
- McAdam;D'Arcy; Deliso; Dragičević; Elliott; Marić; Mutić, Marika; Jayne; Chris; Peter; Mark; Vesna; Anja (2006). Western Balkans. Lonely Planet. pp. 269–280. ISBN 978-1-74104-729-5.
- Crucified Kosovo. The Voice of Kosovo and Metohia. p. 9.
|Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Kosovo.|
- Zach, Elizabeth (14 January 2016). "The most striking aspect of Europe's newest nation: Its normalcy". Washington Post.
- Graham, Adam (20 August 2015). "In Kosovo, a Thirst for Progress, and Beer, Too". New York Times.
- Graham, Adam H (10 December 2014). "Best places to travel in 2015: Pristina, Kosovo". Travel + Leisure.
- Perry, Marc (10 September 2014). "Nine things to know about Kosovo/". Rough Guides.
- Rowley, Tom (2 October 2013). "Kosovo: what to see in Europe's newest country". Telegraph.
- "Prizren: The Best Value European Destination You've Never Heard Of". Five Dollar Traveler. 9 December 2014.
- De Blocq van Kuffeler, Venetia (1 September 2011). "Picturesque Kosovo". Diplomat Magazine. Retrieved 16 December 2011.
- "The 41 Places to Go in 2011". The New York Times. 7 January 2011. Retrieved 16 December 2011.
- Be in Kosovo Portal
- View Kosova (frosgroup.com)
- Kosovo Guide (Kosovapress News Agency)
- Kosova Tourism
- Kosovo Info Tourism Portal
- Kosovo Tourism Center
- Wine Tourism in Southern Kosovo Facebook Page