PUKA – ALBANIA
Puka is a part of the district of Shkodra, a very attractive place, with a green crown, mountains, forests, and caves where you can follow in adventure. Inside Puka, there are at least 17 natural monuments. Other dwellings in this area are Fierza, Iballa, Qelezi, Gjegjani, Fushe-Arrezi, Blerimi, Qafe-Mali, Rrapa etc. In these zones, a very vital population lives, diffused everywhere in the territory, enriched with an old history, documented from the archaeological centers around, from the vestiges, castles, Illyrian walls, from the spiritual inheritance expressed in the songs and dances according to the traditional folk of the zone.
This mosaic of the natural environment and human one composes a powerful source of tourism, in different fields such as walking, hiking, skiing, alpinism, hunting sports, (wild animals and fishing), and also for other re creative activities for relax and entertainment.
The district of Puka lies in the central part of Northern Albania, on the right side of Shkodra, in a rough and variety of relief which includes mountains, deep valleys, rich forests, green meadows, greensward, percolated from numerous steams and rivers with crystal waters, fed by the snow which lies until the early Spring. North and Northern East Puka is surrounded by the district of Has and Tropoja, tthe southern side of Puka borders with Mirdita, the southwest with the district of Lezha and the western side with the town of Shkodra. The climate in Puka is cold, with a long, icy, snowy winter and a short but fresh summer. The minimum and maximum of degrees goes from -10 grade Celsius (January) until 20-22 grade Celsius (July).
Since the time of Pirusts the residents of Puka region had tradition in building of tools work, how to improve the living condition. Noting the propsperity of the areas of Puka, Frang Bardhi, mentions a precious cross, which is in addition to ethnographic value (such as craft paper), shows the date of his paper, in 1637. Also valuable are the writings of Han, where craft works of Puka, are evaluated, particularly in the felt of white or gray (“tirq”, xhoublet, woolen clothes etc.), but also the works of clay, terracote, ceramics etc. From the data of the documents of the period, the craft has been noted for the manufacture of wooden vessels, wooden spoons, ladle, cups, rosettes on ceilings and musical tools as lahuta, ciftelia, shank etc. In particular, these are produced in villages of Kabashi, the area of Drini, Gojani etc. being an ancient settlement, the region of Puka, in accordance with its historical, natural, economic traditions, like many other provinces, has maintained its rich culture. Early traditions are found in folklore, which the artist Pretush Gega, has expressed beautifully in his songs with pieces of life from his “ciftelia”, for the northerners of the region. A rich tradition of Puka are the costumes (dress). Distinguished clothes we find in Kabashi, Koman, Mirdita, Iballa and other variants within them.
ACCOMMODATION IN PUKA – ALBANIA
The base of the accommodation in this town is Puka Hotel, the old tourist structure, totally reconstructed, which offers to you all the necessary to have a high standard of accommodation an gastronomy. European cuisine and luxurious conditions are at your disposal but you will find also traditional food and environments.
ACTIVITIES IN PUKA – ALBANIA
The most attractive part is the ski area, where you can see not only the amateurs but even professional championships. Other activities are the
mountain climbing, trekking, speleology, camping etc. Puka has a local football
match team which is in first category of national football.
It was created in 1936, one of the first football team’s created in this time. Puka is providing every year a lot of young footballer winch they build their own career in superior teams. Besides football in Puka is also relative sport of wrestling. The city of Puka has provided a lot of professionals and champions in International level in this kind of sports who were representing Albania. During these years is invested in those kind of sports to provide more and more athletes. Another sport that is applicable is skiing and very interesting. Nowadays whole youngster are focused in skiing during the winter and in the future from youngster this city will represent Albania in International Championship.
SIGHTSEEING IN PUKA – ALBANIA
The timescale of Gomsiqe, near of the village, 800 meters above the sea level. Is onsists
in remains of tortonian peneplene; the flatten of the relief from the activity of the natural factors, 17 million years ago, in condition of a total relax of tectonic movements. It has the shape of a hidden tableland, 1,5 km long, 700-750 m large. It has scientific, geo-morphological, geological, didactic and tourist values.
Can be visited according to the itinerary Puke-Gomsiqe. The Carst of Munella mountain., near of the village of Tue, Qafe-Mal commune, on the ridge of Munella mountain, 1800- 1990 m on the sea level. It represents carstic sight, with holes, hoppers, wells, carstic wells etc. It has scientific, geomorphological,
geological, didactic and tourist values. Can be visited according to the itinerary Fushe-Arres-Tue-mali i Munelles.
The waterfall of Kryeziu, near of the village, the commune of Qafe-Mali. It is placed at Orosho stream on the magmatic rocks. It has two groundsels, 3-4 m of height, and two dams 1 m deep. It has scientific, geo-morphological, hydrologic,
didactic and tourist values. Can be visited according to the itinerary Fushe Arres-Kryezi.
The chestnut-tree of Kokdodi. Situated 981 m on the sea level, near of Kokdode village, commune of Iballe. It is a chestnut forest about 10 hectares, 15-17 m high, diameter of 100-130 cm, age of over 100 years, damaged from natural causes. e demtime te vogla nga semundje. It has scientific, geomorphological,
biologic, didactic and tourist values. Can be visited according to the itinerary Puke-Iballe-Kokdode. The two Old Trees in the Cemetery of Korthpula. , commune of Luf, 500 m on the sea level. Those are two old oak-trees (a special kind) 15-16 m high, perimeter of the crown about 70-75 m, diameter 1-2 m and age of over 300 years. It has scientific, geo-morphological, biologic, didactic and tourist values. Can be visited according to the itinerary Puke-Gomsiqe – Korthpule.
Kauri Cave, situated at village of Levrushk, in the mountain of The carst of Munella, near of village of Tue, the contea of Qafe-Mal, at the back side of Munella mountain, 1990 m on the sea level. Can be visited by the rural road Fushe- Arrez Tue-Munella mountain The waterfall of Kryeziu, situated at the village of Kryezi, the contea of Qafe-Mal. It is at the small river of Orosh.can be
visited by the road Fushe Arrez-Kryezi. Kollata. 250 m long. The known part is very attractive. Can be visited by the rural road Puke-Levrushk.
The forest of Dardha. It is a mixed forest with beech and pine trees, 450 m on the sea level. Here we can find the Black Pine of Dardh, monument of nature, 100 years old, 25-30 m high, diameter 250 cm and perimeter 750 cm. Mountain of Munella. Lies on the border Mirdite – Puka between Valley of the Big Fani northwest and lower in the southeast, is rich with various animals which makes more favorable for hunting.
The cave of Kauri. (Or the Cave of Monks), near of the village of Lëvrushk, at the mountain of Kollata. Created as a carstic cave at the calcareous of trias-juras, 250 m long 3 m large, with numerous concretions, ta. It has scientific, geo-morphological, historical, didactic and tourist values. Can be visited according to the itinerary Pukë-Lëvrushk.
The Saint Stone, near the village of Zezaj, 538 m on the sea level. It is granite stone in polygonal shape, connected with the legend of Scanderbeg, our national hero. It has scientific, geo-morphological, historical, didactic and tourist values. Can be visited according to the itinerary Pukë-Zezaj.
The mahogany of Leka. Situated 350 m on the sea lebel, near of Kabashi village, in the commune of Rrape. It is stone mahogany, 7 m2, and the information about it, is connected with Lek Dukagjini an Albanian patriarch, who use to join there the convents of the zone. It has historical and tourist values. Can be visited according to the itinerary Pukë-Kabash.
The ammonite fossils of “Triasiku i Poshtëm” in Kçira. Situated 600 m on the sea level, in the village of Kçirë. Studied by the Austrian geologist F. Nopça. It has scientific, geo-morphological, historical, didactic and tourist values. Can be visited according to the itinerary Pukë- Kçirë.
The waterfall of Kryeziu, near of the village, the commune of Qafë-Mali. It is placed at Orosho stream on the magmatic rocks. It has two groundsels, 3-4 m of height, and two dams 1 m deep. It has scientific, geo-morphological, hydrologic, didactic and tourist values. Can be visited according to the itinerary Fushë Arrës-Kryezi.
The chestnut-tree of Kokdodi. Situated 981 m on the sea level, near of Kokdodë village, commune of Iballë. It is a chestnut forest about 10 hectares, 15-17 m high, diameter of 100-130 cm, age of over 100 years, damaged from natural causes. e dëmtime të vogla nga sëmundje. It has scientific, geo-morphological, biologic, didactic and tourist values. Can be visited according to the itinerary Pukë-Iballë-Kokdodë.
The two Old Trees in the Cemetery of Korthpula. , commune of Luf, 500 m on the sea level. Those are two old oak-trees (a special kind) 15-16 m high, perimeter of the crown about 70-75 m, diameter 1-2 m and age of over 300 years. It has scientific, geo-morphological, biologic, didactic and tourist values. Can be visited according to the itinerary Pukë-Gomsiqe-Korthpulë.
The Oak-trees of Shënkoll Cimitery. Situated near of Kryezi village, commune of Qafë-Mal, next to the church, 600 m on the sea level. Those are 5 trees of a special kind of oak-tree family, 20-25 m high perimeter of the crown 180-200 m, diameter 90-100 m, age of over 250 years.
The Oak-Trees of Mosque. Situated at the cimitery of Kryezi, komuna Qafë-Mal. It has an oval crown, 10-12 m high, perimeter over 350 cm, diameter 130 cm, age of 250 vjet. Ka vlera shkencore biologjike, didaktike, estetike, historike, fetare. It has scientific, geo-morphological, biologic, didactic and tourist values. Can be visited according to the itinerary Fushë-Arrës-Kryezi.
The spring of Ndërlugjeve. Situated 800 m above sea level, near the village of Meçe commune of Rrape. 4 trees of 200 years old, 15-16 m height, crown circumference 1.7 to 2 m, 90-100 cm diameter tree. Biological research has value, didactic, historical, religious. Can be visited according to the itinerary Pukë-Meçe.
The Black Mulberry. Situated 800 m above sea level, near Puka town. It is separate black mulberry, aged 100 years, over 9 m height, tree diameter over 1m. It has biological value, didactic, historical and religious ones. Can be visited where going into the city of Puka.
The pond of Tisit. Situated 650 m above sea level, in Gomsiqe valley near the village Pezhvë municipality Tërbun. It is about 9 m tree height, tree diameter of 80 cm, age 100 years. There are biological scientific values, didactic, tourist ones. Can be visited according to the itinerary Pukë-monument
Dardha pine. Located about 450 m above sea level, in the cimitery of Dardha village, Blerim municipality. Black pine is 20-25 m height, tree diameter over 250 cm, the circumference 750 cm, older than 100 years. It has biological value, didactic, historical and religious ones. Can be visited according to the itinerary Fushë Arrës-Dardhë.
The acacia-trees Migjeni. located in the town of Puka, near of Migjeni’s Museum. There are some acacia, under the shadow of which the great poet Migjeni use to relax. There have historical, and cultural values.
The pine-tree of Shejza. Situated near the village of Puka, Iballë. The single tree is located between the bushes, is higher than 20 m, diameter of the tree about 50 cm over the 1.5 m circumference, age over than 200 years. It has scientific, biologic, didactic and tourist values. Can be visited according to the itinerary Fushë-Arrës-Iballë.
HISTORY OF PUKA – ALBANIA
Puka emerges for the first time in the documents of the works of Prokop and Caesar, the great Historians of the time of emperor Justian. The name <Puka>, according to the opinion of that time, derives from the “Via Publica, road of Puka, the pedestrian street and the caravans that passed here, from antiquity until the Middle Age, due to the favorable geographical position of Puka. Nopcsa thinks that Ad Pukaria and Puka are the same, due to the compliance of geographical coordinates and other data.
Situated on the road from the Adriatic to Kosovo, the town developed during the 4th–2nd centuries B.C. In ancient times, it was known as Picarea. The ancient town was destroyed by a barbarian invasion. The town has also been known as Pezhve. This area has a 2,000-year-old tradition of resin sculpture. The remains of this tradition are located in a quarter of Pukë town. In the 20th century, Pukë was expanded as a military base and a center of Catholic Education. The distinguished Albanian poet Migjeni worked there from 1936 to 1937. The school where he worked as a teacher is a tourist attraction. The town is surrounded by a 400-hectare massif covered with pine trees. Since the end of the communist era, there has been a spread of disease in the pines caused by pine processionary moths, whose nests are conspicuous.
Puka is home to 7 Northern Albanian tribes and 3 of the Kanun.
The region also has its own Kanun, a set of traditional Albanian laws and is known as Kanuni i Pukës (English: The Kanun of Pukë) and used mainly in Northern Albania and Kosovo. This region was inhabited by The Illyrian tribe Pirustae.
The hotel standing in the town square has been upgraded and now boasts a micro brewery producing Puka Beer, which is a lager in draught form.
The name Pukë comes from Latin via publica “public road” as it was located on an old trade route.
USEFUL INFORMATION ABOUT PUKA IN ALBANIA
UNIQUE CULTURE OF ALBANIA
The Albanian culture is an exotic blend of traditions that have evolved over thousands of years. From the ancient Illyrians and Greeks to the Romans and the Ottomans, the language, music, arts, and cuisine of the Albanian people are a rich and vibrant mix of many civilizations. Once you discover our culture, you are bound to fall in love with this new destination on the Mediterranean.
Hospitality is in our nature. Welcoming guests and ensuring their comfort is a hallmark of Albanian heritage and is epitomized by our very own Nobel Peace Prize recipient: Mother Teresa. The spirit of cooperation and friendship thrives in Albania, and it is not uncommon for guests to be invited to eat and drink with curious locals wishing to learn more about you.
Besa is a concept related to the Albanian code of honor and is an idea that is very important to the Albanian people. In the Kanun (a set of traditional Albanian laws), Besa is described as the highest authority, so essential to personal and familial standing as to be virtually a cult. Besa has been the subject of some stories and novels by Albania’s foremost modern novelist, Ismail Kadare, a Nobel Prize Candidate for Literature and winner of several international prizes. Kadare’s work has been published in over forty countries and translated into more than thirty languages, making Kadare the best ambassador of Albanian literature worldwide.
If we are speaking about the food and drinks of Albania, then we must mention the country’s deliciously-unique cuisine. It has many similarities to Turkish and Greek dishes, but offers a healthier, Mediterranean twist. Come try our wide variety of phyllo dough delicacies, including a melt-in-your-mouth sensation called byrek, or the original sweet treat known regionally as baklava.
Albania also has a long tradition of wine craftsmanship, which is lately being revived to its former glory. While you’re here, taste a sampling of our wine, produced from a rich soil that has been under cultivation since the ancient Greeks and Romans. Regardless of your culinary inclinations, we guarantee that our rich history and culinary traditions have created a menu of mouth-watering specialties for you to try.
Each region of Albania likes to specialize in its own brand of music, thus giving the music aficionado an incentive to explore the entire country in search of each community’s sense of style. For example, UNESCO has classified a type of music from southern Albania, known as Iso Polyphony, to have tremendous cultural value to humankind. Our music has even given rise to a few prominent artists of global acclaim, including opera lyric soprano, Inva Mula, and the distinguished violinist, Tedi Papavrami.
In regards to style, when you arrive in Albania, you will notice that the men take great pride in their appearance and will often don a suit and tie when in public. Even if their errands only involve a short trip to the grocery store, the men will dress to impress.
Depending upon the type of festival or time of year, you might even catch a glimpse of Albanian men in traditional folk attire. The National Folk Festival held in Gjirokastra is a prime example. This special autumn event is held once every four years and attracts artists from around the world.
The women of Albania also share a flair for style, especially at traditional Albanian weddings. At these events, the families of both the bride and groom will gather together in their finest dress and celebrate with great fervor. Weddings are often the ideal opportunity to witness the best of Albanian culture all in one event, and if you’re invited to one, the experience will undoubtedly be extraordinary.
Albanian culture is unique in many ways and we hope you’ll visit us to see it firsthand. We say ‘yes’ by shaking our head from side to side, both men and women greet each other with a kiss on either cheek, and our conversations are loud and passionate in an effort to entice others to join in. Visit Albania and discover why our culture is a new Mediterranean love.
MAP OF ALBANIA
PHOTO GALLERY OF PUKA
MAP OF PUKA