Skhoder (also spelled as Shkodër or Shkodra) is a small city of 135000 inhabitants in northern Albania, located on the shore of lake Shkoder, not far from the border to Montenegro. The main reason to visit Shkoder is the neighbouring Rozafa fortress, but the city itself is a pleasant place where to break the journey between Tirana and Montenegro, having lunch and doing some shopping. Restaurants in Shkoder are much cheaper than restaurants in Montenegro.
Shkoder has been settled by the ancient Illyrian tribes of the Ardiaei and Labeates since the 4th century BC. Annexed by the Romans in 168 BC, it became later part of the Byzantine empire and then part of the Ottoman empire in the 15th centuty.
The hill of the Rozafa castle has been settled since antiquity, but the current structures date back to the Venetian period. The castle is accessible by a road open for cars, and near the entrance there is a parking for cars. Inside the castle there is a building which was converted into a mosque (the Fatih Sultan Mehmet mosque).
How to get to Shkoder
Currently Shkoder can only be reached by car or bus, as there is no train station and no airport.
There are countless hotels in and around Shkoder, all bookable via the international booking portals.
01 Access road to Rozafa castle 02 Access road to Rozafa castle 03 Rozafa castle gate 04 Rozafa castle gate 05 Rozafa castle gate
06 Rozafa castle walls 07 Buna river and Shkoder lake 08 Bridge over Buna river
09 Shkoder 10 Rozafa castle walls
11 Rozafa castle ruins 12 Rozafa castle walls 13 Fatih Sultan Mehmet mosque
14 Rozafa castle 15 Buna river and Shkoder lake 16 Merlons in Rozafa castle
17 Rozafa castle ruins 18 Rozafa castle 19 Rozafa castle
20 Rozafa castle gate 21 Rozafa castle 22 Rozafa castle
23 Rozafa castle ruins 24 Merlons in Rozafa castle 25 Merlons in Rozafa castle 26 Central mosque 27 Bookstore
28 Mother Teresa statue 29 Hotel Colosseo 30 Hotel Colosseo 31 Pedestrian area 32 Pedestrian area
33 Open air cafe 34 Catholic church 35 San Francisco restaurant 36 Silver jeweller shop 37 Open air cafe
38 Open air cafe 39 Beauty Point perfumery 40 Advertising column 41 Pedestrian area 42 Pedestrian area
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©Copyright Alfred Molon