Just a few kilometers outside of Pristina is one of the oldest Ottoman monuments in the Balkans, according to the leaflet. And it’s beautiful! You must see it while in town.
The Battle of Kosovo field took place in 1389 between the Serbians and the Ottomans. The Ottomans won, but Sultan Murad I was killed in the battle. One famous version of the story goes that the Serb nobleman Milos Obilic “played dead” on the field while Sultan Murad went out to check the condition of his wounded on the battlefield. When the sultan neared, Milos Obilic killed him with a dagger.
The stone mausoleum is in perfect condition, and a casket-shaped rock with an embroidered cloth lays over it. The guide told us in English that only Murad’s internal organs are buried at this location, with the rest of his body in Bursa. The Muslim religion prohibits mummifying a body, but removing the internal organs would slow the decay as they transported the body back to the major Ottoman city. Women should dress conservatively and bring a scarf to wear on their heads while in the tomb. Everyone should kick off their shoes before entering as well. Of course, be respectful of anyone paying homage to the tomb. Taking pictures of the architecture (quietly) seems to be fine.
Outside the tomb is a very pretty garden with intricately carved rocks and graves bearing the surname “Turbedar.” This word means custodian of the tomb, and it was adopted by the man first appointed to take care of the Sultan’s tomb. His descendants still live on site and take care of the tomb to this day.
Right next door to the tomb is a white building with an orange tiled roof. There is a very well-appointed museum with mannequins in Turkish garb, carved stones, and lots of historical information in several languages (including English). In all, it is a great way to spend a morning or an afternoon!
Price: Free, but donations accepted in a box in the museum.
Web site: http://www.sultanmurad.com/
Tip: Gazimestan tower is very close; you can do both sights in one day.
Driving Directions: (~10-15 mins) Starting at U.S. Embassy Bravo gate, drive right down hill to the main road (Ahmet Krasniqi). Continue to the first traffic circle. Go straight through past Te Ismeti hardware store, choosing the first option toward Mitrovica. In about 5-6 kilometers, just as the guardrail in the middle of the road stops, take a left across the highway onto a dirt road. Very shortly, you will see a white-walled compound on your right. Park right outside the walls.
(Click to enlarge)