Velipoje is surrounded by numerous touristic sights which attract hundreds of tourists every day.
Nearby, just 30 minutes away, is the historical city of Shkoder (founded some 2400 years ago), with an ancient
history and the famous Rozafa castle worth visiting. Rozafa Castle is a medieval citadel near a town of
Shkodër in Albania. The name of the castle comes from an ancient legend about its construction. Three brothers
tried to erect a castle on this location. They worked all day and every night the walls fell down. A wise old man
advised the brothers to sacrifice one their wives to make the walls impregnable. The brothers agreed to allow
chance to pick its victim the one wife that would bring food the next day will be walled in. However the oldest two
sons cheated and warned their wives. The wife of the youngest, Rozafa, was doomed, but did not protest. As a last
wish she asked to allow her right eye, right breast, right arm and right leg exposed to see, feed and care for her
newborn son. The legend goes that breast milk occasionally flows from the sides of the castle whenever the enemy is
approaching to take it.
The original citadel on this 113 meter high hill was erected in 350 BC by the Illyrians. Confluence of two major
local rivers, Buna and Drini, was an important crossroad for movement in the region. Much of was destroyed by the
Romans then they invaded and captured the region in 167 BC although some remains are still visible. Much of the
fortifications that you see today date from the Venetians and Ottomans that rebuilt fortress and used it as a
Velipoje is only 5 km away from Ada Bojana and 18 km from Ulcinj in Montengro (aerial distance). To get
there however, you have to go through the border in Shkoder and the distance is much longer but worth combining a 1
day visit to explore the nearby attractions in Montenegro. We hope the direct road that connects Velipoje with
Ulqin will be built soon, to encourage tourists moving easily in both countries.
The Castle in Lezhe, about 1 hour drive from Velipoje, is also an important historical landmark of
Albania. In Lezhe tourists visit also other monuments located in the city.