I’m always making plans about the places I will go to when I have enough money, time and leisure. The only region I’ve explored in my 21year old life has been the Balkans, and that isn’t saying much, since you can span four countries in a day there.
Western Europe is definitely where I want to travel when I have the means, but that said, I still think the Balkans is one of the most exciting places on the planet. This article on Balkan Travellers lists my hometown as one of the five Balkan cities to visit in 2009:
“Calling Prishtina a beautiful place would require a stretch of the imagination, but the town’s chief attraction is its spirit. Fashionable cafés and restaurants serving delicious food, its welcoming people with an average age between 25 and 30 and its energy and optimism are what makes up for the construction work, going on literally on every corner of the town, and its unremarkable architecture.”
The description is more or less spot on – it’s dusty and occasionally claustrophobic, but FUN and alive. The other cities on the list are: Istanbul, Belgrade, Varna and Bucharest.
DISCLAIMER: For current Prishtinians in Prishtina reading this, who think I’m suffering from a bout of diasporic nostalgia – I’m not waxing poetic about Prishtina – I’m perfectly aware of all that is frustrating and annoying about the city where I was born and spent about half of my youth. But, after having spent some time living abroad, you come to understand what is unique and valuable about each place you call home. A decade spent living in North America is a great lesson in contrast – in terms of architecture and lifestyle. More on this later, I have to go to sleep.