Kruje Travel Guide

  • Town below castle ruins
    Town below castle ruins
    by Orchid
  • Skenderbeg's Museum
    Skenderbeg's Museum
    by Orchid
  • Bazaar
    Bazaar
    by Orchid

Kruje Things to Do

  • The Man with the Goat's Head Helmet

    Albania's historical hero, Skanderbeg is eulogised in the Skanderbeg museum, inside the walls of the Krujë castle. Its collection includes lots of 15th century military artifacts related to the Albanian-Ottoman wars, during which the castle was besieged four times by the Ottoman army. There is also a virtual shrine to Skanderbeg with modern...

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  • The bazaar

    Kruje’s old bazaar is a charming place with cobbled streets and colourful shops... Mainly souvenir shops where you can buy traditional Albanian costumes, books, musical instruments, and different items from the communist days... Very relaxed atmosphere, friendly service, and no aggressive salesmen... Just be a little careful when walking through...

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  • National Ethnographic Museum

    The National Ethnographic Museum opened in 1989, in an old traditional house from 1764. It is two stories high, and consists of 15-16 small rooms; kitchen, sleeping room, living room, guest room, workshop area, and much more... All rooms are filled with old furniture, daily life objects, tools, and machines - giving a good view of how life was in...

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  • Kruje Castle and Skanderbeg National...

    Kruje Castle has a long history dating back to the 5th and 6th centuries, and is a place of great historical importance for all Albanians. It became really famous during Skanderbeg’s (the national hero of Albania) battle against the Ottoman Turks in the middle of the 15th century... Most of the castle is now ruins, but remains of a few houses,...

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  • Visit the Skanderbeg Castle Museum

    When visiting the Skanderbeg Castle it is important to visit the associated museum, located within the walls of the castle. For a nominal entrance fee, visitors can wonder the halls of this interesting building and step back in time through the museums numerous artifacts from the Skanderbeg era (1405-1466). Tourists interested in a thorough...

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  • Kruja, craft in the old bazaar

    In the old bazaar, you can find antiques and local craft. Apparently, until now, all craft are locally made and not imported from China like in all touristy places! Let us hope that this will last!The first photo shows vessels made with pine cones arranged in a very clever way!The second photo shows superb baskets made of olive wood. We bought one...

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  • Kruja, the old bazaar

    Actually, the old Bazaar in Kruja is not that old. It has been completely restored around 1960 but, though I have not found any picture of how it looked before the restoration, it seems that it looks like the previous one. It is made of two rows of shops, lined on both sides of a paved alley with the gutter in the middle.

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  • Kruja, a fountain in the castle yard

    A fountain with the head of a goat is flowing gently, imbedded in the wall of the historical museum. I have read that there was a XVth century fountain in the castle yard, but I cannot ascertain that it is this one, except that I have not seen any other !

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  • Kruja, remains of an old settlement in...

    The first photo shows the remains (only the base of the walls) of an old settlement, below the entrance yard. I have no clue on the date it was built.The second photo shows the entrance of the “museu etnografic” (ethnographic museum). On the left, an old woman has hanged a hand made lace for sale to visitors. She displays also several small...

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  • Kruja, inner yard of the castle

    In the inner yard of the castle, several shops were selling souvenirs of Kruja and of Skanderbeg. It was only 10 AM and there were no other visitors than us. If there were so many shops, I suppose that later in the morning and in the afternoon, busses from Tirana bring their loads of visitors to this main site of Albania’s history.Photo 1 and 2...

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  • Kruja, road to the castle

    The road to the castle is narrow but perfectly paved with small stones. On the right, it overhangs the lowest part of the city and the plain (first photo).After a few hundred meters, a vaulted entrance (second photo) allows to enter the inner yard of the castle. We did not pay any entrance fee, may be because we were in May and that there were too...

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  • Kruja, another fountain below the...

    This building is about the same shape and size as the fountain but of a different style. The shape of the windows reveals again an ottoman style but more recent. However, I had no clue on its meaning or function when I discovered on the photo that there was a dark slab of stone on the left to the closed entrance.With the help of Photoshop, I...

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  • Kruja, ancient fountain below the castle

    This small square building, ottoman style, stands on the left to the road that leads to the castle.The third photo shows the fountain itself. The mouth where water should flow is dry. The basin is made of a single stone that has been carved. Obviously, the fountain is under repair!Photo 4 is a close up on the stones over the mouth of the fountain....

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  • Kruja seen from the castle

    Unsurprisingly, the castle is the best place to have a general view of the town. The second photo is a close-up that shows the mosque in the middle of the photo. In the foreground, at the foot of the mosque, the double row of low houses is the old market (see other tips)

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  • Kruja, the castle and Skanderbeg museum

    Every visitor to Kruja visit the castle and Skanderbeg museum as they are the main feature of the town. The castle stands on a peg that overhangs the town. The Skanderbeg museum has been built a little lower, on a shelf.

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  • Kruja, a mountain town

    The road from Fushe-Kruja (Kruja-in-the-plain) to Kruja is a very good but steep mountain road with a lot of curves. The town is clung to the mountain slopes and as can be better seen on the first photo, the houses have to grow in height, as space is limited.The main mosque (second photo) stands on one of the few flat areas in the town.The third...

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  • Great Day Trip from Tirana - Kruja

    Kruja is a small town nestled along a mountain, about 30 minutes from Tirana. Probably the best place to buy souvenirs in the country, Kruja is also a great place to take photos. When visiting, the travelor should visit Skanderbeg Castle/Museum and the lovely bazaare. Kruja is accessible by shared minibuses, which depart from Tirana on an hourly...

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  • Museum of Gjergj Kastriot Scanderbeg

    The Museum of Gjergj Kastriot Scanderbeg, opened in 1982, is an interesting (although not old) place to visit in the Fortress, although it was designed to look like an ancient fortress. Blame it one Hoxha's daughter and her husband.The museum tells you the history of the struggle against Ottoman invasion in several ways: paintings, sculptures,...

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Kruje Restaurants

  • Belvedere

    I have described in my hotel tip how to arrive to “Hotel, bar, restaurant, piceri Belvedere”. Once in the restaurant, we arrived in a large room rather noisy that seemed to be a place for quick snacks. A waiter showed us that we should take the staircase on the left and go to an upper room that was a kind of wide balcony overhanging the noisy room....

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  • food from heaven

    There it was... a large-ish building on two floors, half of it hosting this restaurant. It doesn't look very special at all, except for the balcony overlooking the bazaar - but we found it promising, in particular because it was the only restaurant we found that did nto specialize on pizza (a typical balcan fixation). I had a tave dheu (in the...

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  • Kruje Hotels

    0 Hotels in Kruje

Kruje Transportation

  • To Kruje by bus

    From Tirana to Kruje and back you can get by bus. Near Tirana's train station there is a dusty square with many buses - so this is NOT the depatrure place for buses to Kruje. Near this square there is a bazar entitled Market Shkoder. You need to go through the whole market until you see another dusty square with buses and cars parked. At this...

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  • Take a furgon to the mountains

    Kruje is about 45 minutes or 1 hour away from Tirana and it's very easy to reach by minibus (furgon). The cost is about 150 lek per person (basically peanuts) and furgons leave as sson as they are full. Ask a taxi driver to take you where the furgons leave from and don't worry if no one else comes along - even if you have to go by yourself and pay...

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  • Don't Forget Insurance

    If your current health insurance doesn't cover you while your abroad, you should consider getting international travel insurance just in case something should go wrong.

Kruje Local Customs

  • Qofte me garniture

    The photo was also taken at Restaurant Belvedere and shows “Qofte me garniture” (Fried Meatballs). Ground meat is added with chopped onions, parsley, chopped feta cheese, bread crumbs. It is formed either as meatballs and seasoned with salt, pepper, mint and oregano. It is cooked in olive oil. Yummy! We paid 450 lek

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  • Tru viçi me garniture

    The photo, taken at Restaurant Belvedere, shows “tru viçi me garniture”, a dish made with grilled slices of veal brain, served with fried potatoes and full garniture (tomatoes, onions, cucumber, olives, beans, xhaxhik). It was excellent and we paid 550 lek

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  • Tave Dheu

    The photo, taken at Restaurant Belvedere, shows Tave Dheu, a dish very popular in central Albania. It is a very tasty dish made with chopped liver baked in a sauce made with lamb cheese (almost the same as Greek feta), eggs and yogurt. It was excellent and we paid 200 lek.

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Kruje Warnings and Dangers

  • JLBG's Profile Photo

    by JLBG Written Oct 15, 2007

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    In all my travels, I try to find unusual “school warning” road signs. In Kruja, I was lucky to find this old looking sign with extra slim pupils running to school. That must have been hand drawn by a local artist and I suppose it is unique, as I have not seen any other in Kruja.

    I have scheduled to present all my school road sign together but I do not know yet how I will do it.

    Kruja, caution, school
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    • Study Abroad

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Kruje Off The Beaten Path

  • Kruja, bear at restaurant Belvedere

    I have described in my hotel tip how to arrive to “Hotel, bar, restaurant, piceri Belvedere”. Once in the restaurant, we arrived in a large room rather noisy that seemed to be a place for quick snacks. A waiter showed us that we should take the staircase on the left and go to an upper room that was a kind of wide balcony overhanging the noisy room....

    more
  • Dollma Teqe

    The Dollma teqe, a Bektashi temple built in 1789. The Bektashi were a Muslim branch founded in Anatolia in the 13th century by Haxhi Bektash Veli. Their wiew of religion was somewhat different than other branches of Islam. First of all they did not choose as cult places mosques but simpler houses - they also did not ask women to be veiled and did...

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Kruje Favorites

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  • The Skanderbeg Museum and the Kruja...

    Kruja is a small town located 32 km northwest from Tirana the capital. It has a castle and a museum which features the ancient wars and history of Albania under Gjergj Kastrioti Skenderbeu and his glorious victories againts the Ottomans in the 1400s. For a quarter of a century he and his country prevented Turks from invading Catholic Western...

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  • The Skanderbeg Museum and the Kruja...

    Kruja is a small town located 32 km northwest from Tirana the capital. It has a castle and a museum which features the ancient wars and history of Albania under Gjergj Kastrioti Skenderbeu and his glorious victories againts the Ottomans in the 1400s. For a quarter of a century he and his country prevented Turks from invading Catholic Western...

    more
  • Kruje explained

    Kruja is a small mountain town 32 kilometres north-west of Tirana and it's a perfect destination for a day trip. "Kruj'" means "spring" and in the past it was famous for its fresh waters. it is also a medieval town rich in history, and the birthplace of the national hero: Gjergj Kastriot Scanderbeg, who fought against the Ottoman invasion. Kruja is...

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Explore Deeper into Kruje
Kruja, an old lady
Local Customs
The Ethnographic Museum
Things to Do
Gjergj Kastrioti Skenderbeg
Local Customs
Kruje castle
Things to Do
the bazaar
Things to Do
Skenderbeg welcomes you
Things to Do
Map of Kruje

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