Kosovo Information

Practical info and facts

This Kosovo Information page provides facts, sights and practical tips about the Republic of Kosovo.

Religion in Kosovo

The Republic of Kosovo is a secular state. The majority of the inhabitants have a Muslim heritage, and practice a very mild form of Islam. Everywhere throughout the country you will find mosques, and most people celebrate the two big feasts of Islam. In most of the cities in Kosovo you hardly see women with headscarves. Most of the Kosovars consider their Albanian ethnicity to be of higher importance than their religious identity. Around 60,000 Kosovars consider themselves Catholic. Read all about this topic at our special Kosovo information page about religion.

capital city of Kosovo

Cities in Kosovo

The most important cities in Kosovo are Pristina, Peja, Prizren and Gjakova. Another major town is Mitrovica. This place has a large Serbian minority. Other big cities are Gjilan and Ferizaj. Read about the cities at our special Kosovo information page about cities.

Kosovo independence

Kosovo was after the war in 1999 officially still a part of Serbia. But, the place was ruled by the United Nations. The country self-declared its independence on February 17th, 2008.

A majority of Western countries backed this new status quickly. Read all about this topic at our Kosovo information page about independence.

International organizations

NATO in Kosovo

Since the Kosovo war of 1999, several NATO-forces have been in the country. Their mission was given the name KFOR. KFOR started with 50,000 members in 1999. But, the military force in the country decreased year by year until they reached 4,559 in 2016. In several cities, the KFOR-troops no longer have a large presence. In general, you hardly see them in most places. The majority of cities in Kosovo are now very safe.

NATO vehicle in Kosovo, 2005
eulex officials in Kosovo

EU in Kosovo

The European Union is present in Kosovo with the name EULEX. The main purpose of the mission is to help establish the rule of law. EULEX became fully operational in 2009 and had the support of both the EU member states and Canada, Norway, Switzerland, Turkey and the US.

United States of America in Kosovo

The USA is very present in the Republic of Kosovo with military, political and NGO-related means. Most of the Kosovars are thankful to America for their role in the liberation of Kosovo in 1999. In capital Pristina, there is a large statue of former President Bill Clinton. Twenty years after, he came two days for a visit.

The military presence of the United States is very large in Kosovo. One of the largest US military bases, outside their own land, lies in Kosovo. A few thousand can stay at the base. The name of the military camp is Camp Bondsteel.

The Americans have a large embassy. The new building costed around 200 million euro. There was once an important meeting where the Kosovo’s president convinced two political party leaders to form a new government. The US ambassador was the only other person in the room.

United Nations in Kosovo

After the war in Kosovo, the United Nations in Kosovo were practically ruling the country. Kosovo was a so-called U.N. protectorate. The UN started with 9,000 workers, and decreased that number to a couple hundred in 2016.

statue bill clinton in pristina kosovo
football fans of kosovo national team

Kosovo Football team

The football team of Kosovo is recognized by both the FIFA and the UEFA since 2016. Before that, Kosovo was only allowed to play international friendlies, since 2014. In the first year of their friendly matches, Kosovo played against Haiti, Turkey, Senegal and Oman. After that, the new football team played qualification matches for both the World Cup and European Cup. Read all this topic at our Kosovo information page about football.

Kosovo news websites

Looking for news about Kosovo in English? The country has several media outlets that write articles in the English language. News about Kosovo can be found via KosovapressGazeta ExpressRKTlive and Balkan Insight.

Travel information Kosovo

Security in Kosovo

Kosovo is in general a very safe place to stay. Military violence or riots are mostly only found in the Mitrovica area in the north. This is the area with a large number of Serbian inhabitants. From time to time, an incident takes places in this region. Incidents in Mitrovica are often published in international newspapers, which might give the impression that ‘whole the country’ is dangerous.

The majority of Kosovars are pro-Western and pro-European. They want to take care of tourists and other visitors. Walking on the streets at night is in general a safe thing to do. Like always: use common sense.

The safe center of Pristina
religious buildings in Gjakova Kosovo

Language in Kosovo

The language of Kosovars is Albanian. This is because of the large majority of ethnic Albanians in the country (more than 90%). Albanian is an independent language, influenced by Latin and Greek, but also by Ottoman Turkish.

Serbian is also an official language in Kosovo. You see the language on many governmental signs and websites. Other recognized regional languages are Bosnian, Turkish, Gorani and Romani.

Names of cities at road signs are written in both Albanian and Serbian. In the city of Prizren, you will even find the street signs in Turkish too. 

Many Kosovars do speak English or German as a second language. In the center of the capital Pristina is a large number of Western expats. Ordering a coffee or beer in the English language is common. Many young Kosovars have studied abroad, and therefore speak good English. Therefore, they can also give you some personal ‘Kosovo information’.

Passports and travel documents in Kosovo

EU civilians and Americans can enter Kosovo without a visa. They can stay up to three months. Of course, you need a passport to enter the Republic of Kosovo. Several citizens, like the Dutch, are also allowed to enter with an ID card. If you are from of one of these countries, you do not need a visa. This website works if you click on the dropdown menu and select your country.

albanian flag waving through the wind
religious buildings in Gjakova Kosovo
© Gjakova, by Bujar Gashi

Inhabitants of 87 countries do need a visa to enter Kosovo. It’s not a matter of just buying a visa at the border, so be prepared. This website of a university might give you additional information. Curious about all Kosovan embassies in the world?

Time difference with Kosovo

Kosovo is in the Central European Time zone, which means that they have the same time as Amsterdam, Paris, Berlin and Brussels. Kosovo has daylight savings time and wintertime.

Weather in Kosovo

Kosovo has long, warm summers, and cold winters. Thus, you might experience nice temperatures between April and October. June, July, and August have high temperatures, regularly above 30 degrees Celsius. There is a short spring and a short fall.

Winters are often intense. This means a lot of frost, and from time to time much snow. Of course, this is ideal for winter holidays. Snow in the mountains is often visible until the end of April.

The big mountains cause weather differences between several cities. So when checking the internet for the weather news, make sure you type in the correct city. Note: sometimes weather website uses the Serbian names for cities. Interested which places are great to visit in summer or winter time? Visit our Kosovo information page about tourism.

waterfall in the rugova valley of kosovo
a beautiful cafe restaurant in kosovo
The popular cafe Sonder in Pristina, Kosovo

Vaccinations and injections for Kosovo

Seek advice from your own doctor about vaccines for Kosovo. Do not wait till the day before you leave. Hepatitis A and DPT vaccines might be advised for example.

Kosovo is full of pharmacies, and are often opened till late. They are called ‘Barnatore’ in the Albanian language. Supermarkets and shops in Kosovo sell many kinds of cleaning supplies these days.

In general, it’s safe to buy food on the street or go to qebabtores or restaurants. You find more about this subject on number #7 of the Kosovo information page that shares ten positive points about Kosovo.

Drink water quality in Kosovo

The quality of tap water is different per region. We advise you to buy bottled water in a shop. Most Kosovars do drink the tap water. Prices for a bottle of water are very low. On the street, they sell small water bottles for around thirty euro cent.

If you order a coffee in a restaurant, it is normal to receive a glass of water together with it. This is often tap water, so don’t feel bad to leave it untouched. By the way, the story goes that caffè macchiato in Kosovo is the best in the world.

Local currency in Kosovo

Since 2002, you pay with the euro in Kosovo. Despite of the fact that the Republic is not an official euro country. In the couple of Serbian parts of the country, people pay with the Serbian dinar.

a table full with traditional food of kosovo
Some restaurants in Kosovo offer traditional food
raiffeisen bank in kosovo
© fb.com/RaiffeisenKosova/

In small shops and restaurants, they prefer you to pay cash. Credit cards are often allowed, but having the transaction go through is not a guarantee. At the other hand, paying with a card is more and more the standard in bigger supermarkets.

Kosovo is full of ATMs, but not all will accept your foreign bank card. So when possible, take several bank cards with you.

Smoking ban in Kosovo

Smoking is not permitted in cafes and restaurants in Kosovo. Just like in other countries, it doesn’t guarantee that a place is certainly smoke free. Big and modern restaurants will have a greater chance of being smoke free than small cafes in villages.

Kosovo information about Tourism

Kosovo is a perfect destination for those who want to enjoy nature’s beauty and beautiful cultural sights. For example big waterfalls, national parks, ancient monasteries, traditional cities and beautiful mosques. Check out the Kosovo highlights at our Kosovo information page about Tourism.

Flying to Kosovo

Kosovo has a new international airport. This is twenty minutes by car from the center of the capital Pristina. The name of the airport of Kosovo is Adem Jashari International Airport. Many planes fly directly to Kosovo. Read about the airport and flights to Kosovo at our special Kosovo information page about Pristina Flights.

bars at pristina international airport

Public holidays in Kosovo

Kosovo celebrates ten public holidays. Governmental workers, offices and others that can afford it are having a day off. You will find all the public holidays and their dates listed at the page Kosovo public holidays.

This is the end of the Kosovo Information page. Do you miss something? Feel free to write your comment below. Thank you!

Mirusha waterfalls are an important tourism sight in Kosovo

Kosovo tourism

Tourism in Kosovo Planning a holiday to Kosovo? Have a day off in the small Balkan state? The country has a lot to offer. Beautiful

Dua Lipa closeup

Dua Lipa

Dua Lipa Dua Lipa (22 August 1995) is an English singer from London. She was just 19 years old when she came with her first song.

28 thoughts on “Kosovo Information”

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  2. “This is the area with a large number of Serbian inhabitants, which sometimes leads to violence.”
    This sounds racist and unfair. The Serbs in the north do not want to be part of independent Kosovo in the same way the Albanians in Kosovo did not want to be a part of Serbia after 1989. This is political problem, not a sign that that one ethic group is inherently violent.
    In the info about religion, there is no word about Orthodox Christianity, the second most important religion in Kosovo (more practitioners than Catholics). I guess that is because its practitioners are Serbs. I think it is sad, because it makes your nice presentation somewhat misleading. All World Heritage Sites on Kosovo are Orthodox Christian churches. For that reason it is impossible to ignore the silence. If Kosovo wants to be modern and inclusive, these glaring omissions are unacceptable.

    • Dear Marko, thank you very much for your critical feedback. Although we did not mean to be ‘racist and unfair’, we are aware of the fact that this sentence might be taken like this. Therefore, we have changed it immediately.

      Concerning your comment about our Religion page: we don’t understand this, cause there are several words spoken about Serbian Orthodox, including a link to a page about the monastery in Decan. So please read again.

      • Dear Marko,
        With the will of having a civilized discussion among everyone here, I do not think you can compare the situation of serbs not wanting to be part of independent Kosova with that of Kosova not wanting to be part of Serbia. The simple reason is that northern part is and always was part of territory of Kosova (before Serbian occupation) and great Albania in older times, whilst Kosova wanting independence is simply because naturally was never part of Serbian territory, but indeed under the serbian occupation, without its willingness.

        • Your coment doesn’t Make sence. Kosovo has always been serbian teritory. Than Otomans ocuppied that area (1389 butlle on Kosovo) and also entire Balcan Penicula. Kosovo Is word whith serbian origin that mean kos (beard species) and polje field( look in serbian dictionary) and also Metohija area ( red ground). Our serbian people lived there for over than ten centuries and were minority there. Serbian Kings built in Kosovo and Metohija a numerious ortodox chrches and monestires which many of thems Are From 13 and 14. centuries (UNESCO heritage). It was Big migrations of Serbs From there to Hungary and central Serbia under Otomans pressure in 17 c. In 1990 over 250 000 Serbs expelled under illegal OVK organizacion. It Is sad how you superficial look at.
          Sorry for my English, I do my Best to tell our serbian state. I wish you to do better researh when you write about something. See serbian sorces. Don’t look Just one side.

          Be in peace.
          Best regards

          • Error*majority
            Albanija in order Times? The first Albanian country was made by Austro Hungary Empire 1913. on old greek and serbian teritories Epir and Tesalia.

            Also of you want details, Northern Kosovo wasn’t be Part of Kosovo area before Yugoslavia was made.

  3. me and my family will want to come for Kosovo Torist visit I NEED A GOOD TORIST COMPANY CONTACTS

  4. Thank you for this page! I will be moving to Kosovo from the USA to teach and I’m extremely excited to learn more and be a part of this beautiful country!

  5. Vegetarian Food available in Kovoso, My friend is Indian Hindu he is not eat Non-Vegetarian food.
    How much is cost for Veg food or Indian style food available in Kosovo

    • Thanks, Barry, for your question. I think that this will only be clear at the moment that the UK really leaves the EU. In general, our guess will be that it is not necessary, since most Western countries can travel here without visa.

  6. Dear Sir or Madam,
    Good morning,

    We are resident in Kinshasa.
    We want to solicit the letter of invitation from your office for tourism in July 2018.
    Please send us the information to get this letter.
    It is to ask for the visa to arrive at the airport.
    You tell us if you will have our copies of passports because we are 4 people.

    Oscar Kisilu


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