Kruja is the medieval capital of Skanderbeg.
Skanderbeg, the Albanian national hero, well known for his battles against ottoman empire, was born in Kruja. This is a small city, 32km away from Tirana and very close to Tirana International Airport.
Known as a wonderful historic city, it offers an open vista to an amazing panoramic view, just 608m above sea level.
Based in the history, Skanderbeg, in the fifteenth century made Kruja a bastion of uncompromising resistance against the Ottoman.
Inside the castle walls, which dates back to the fifth and sixth centuries A.D, there is The Gjergj Kastrioti Skanderbeg Museum. The museum itself was inaugurated in 1981.
Within the walls of the castle there are also the Ethnographic Museum and the Dollma Tekke.
The Ethnographic Museum, built in 1764, belonged to one of the wealthy families living in the castle. The Museum is set in a walled courtyard with two gateways. It is a typical Ottoman style house and most of the items are original.
Near the castle’s entrance there is the traditional market, which dates back to the period of Skanderbeg. Here, tourists can find Albanian craft products such as embroidered items, carpeting, silver objects, copper, alabaster, filigree, traditional clothing and antiques.
This wonderful road made of stone, it is knows as the Old Bazaar of Kruja. Above all, don’t miss the chance to take picture with ‘qeleshe‘ here, which is a traditional hat in Albania.
In addition, the nature in Kruja is lovely and especially if you go in autumn, all the leaves will have started changing color, which provides fascinating pictures.
Also you can enjoy a good meal, in the restaurants near the hill, where the view will be incredible.
An advice for all the tourists:
When you visit kruja, don’t leave without tasting a traditional Turkish coffee.