For us, one of the exciting parts of travel is the research and planning that it takes to make each trip a reality. Normally our trips are regional, and rarely do we just pick one destination, so in the early stages it’s thrilling to think that everything is possible.
On a steep hill overlooking the Old Bazaar stands the beautifully restored Mustafa Pasha Mosque. In 1492, while Christopher Columbus was searching for India and stumbling into the Americas, the Ottomans were building this mosque for local Vizier Mustafa Pasha.
“Skopje’s Old Bazaar and caravanserais” – that’s what got my attention. Just reading these words made me think of adventure. I’ve always loved travel tales about long, arduous journeys to foreign lands, whether truth or fiction.
It’s out of my sight, but the distant and serene call to prayers from the Sultan Murat Mosque lets me know the sun is rising in the east. Not long after, rhythmic bells from St. Mary’s Orthodox Church next door also remind the Christian faithful of their religious duties.
“Bosnia is a world where East meets West, where minarets and church spires compete for your attention, and where the cultural tectonic plates of Islam and Christendom rub together.” –Rick Steves