Best Places to visit in Albania

Image: Flickr / Artur Malinowski - CC BY 2.0

Whenever I say the word ‘Albania’, often people think it’s a name of a girl. But, Albania is a country in Europe that will remind people of the 1950’s. It is rich with the ancient history, has multiple UNESCO heritage sites, and is emerging as a top tourist destination. If you’re planning to visit the beautiful country, here are the places that you shouldn’t miss out on.

Tirana

tirana, albania, 500
Image: GjataErvin (CC0), Pixabay

The capital city of Albania is full of interesting things that keep you engaged during your stay. The city is colorful and lively with its painted facades, graffiti, and murals. The place is rich in history has it has been under the control of Ottomans, Italians and communist forces. Don’t forget to visit the gorgeous cafes in the city. A sip of Turkish Coffee will stay on your tongue as long as the tour lasts.

Gjirokastra

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Image: LindaSaitos (CC0), Pixabay

Gjirokastra is a renowned UNESCO world heritage site. The city is overlooked by a fortress that was an essential part of the Byzantine empire. The city is filled with old wooden houses that lean against the slopes of a hill adding a fairytale effect to the city. The cobblestoned streets and the lined houses will make oneself think that they are dreaming. There are multiple places of historic importance including the Cold War Tunnel which was built in secrecy during the 1960’s.

Pogradec

Pogradec Albania
Image: Wikimedia / Albinfo – CC BY 3.0

Pogradec welcomes a visitor with a fascinating view of Lake Ohrid. The deepest lake in the Balkan, it is home to unique aquatic species that it is under the protection of UNESCO. The city’s pleasant and fresh climate during the summer is enough for tourists to pay a visit and it is also known for its unique tradition called ‘family tourism’. The Rock of Kamje is a natural monument that one shouldn’t miss while in Pogradec.

Kruja

Kruja Albania
Image: Flickr / Chris WaltsCC BY-SA 2.0

Yet another place in Albania that reminds one of the fairytales, Kruja is famous for its street bazaars. It’s a place which will coerce you to fill your return luggage with souvenirs. The old bazaar in Kruja is famous for selling carpets, clothes, and even cups for drinking Turkish coffee. The town is most famous for the ‘Land of the Eagles’ where the Albanian hero Skanderbeg fought the Ottomans and restricted their advance. It’s a destination that helps you relax.

Saranda

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Image: GjataErvin (CC0), Pixabay

Clear turquoise water backed by limestone hills, Saranda is a Mediterranean destination that has a selection of unbelievable beaches that makes people want to stay as long as they’d want. The warm weather can be exciting especially for those visiting from cold places. The Lekuresi castle is a place often dotted with tourists which provides panoramic views of the town and provides one with the view of the Corfu islands of Greece.

Berat

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Image: Websi (CC0), Pixabay

The Ottoman-era houses are the first things that attract a visitor as soon as they enter the beautiful city of Berat. This is the reason why it is designated as the UNESCO World Heritage Site. If you’re interested in knowing about the life and culture of the people in the yesteryears, the Berat National Ethnographic Museum is for you. It has friendly people and has a lot of friendly cats that might keep running around you. The view from the Berat castle will never fade from your memory.

Shkodra

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Image: ninagalanska (CC0), Pixabay

Shkodra, like every other city in Albania, is as centuries old. It has seen the presence of multiple empires in the past. Thanks to the Italian photographer Pietro Marubi, the gallery on Muhamet Gollesha depicts the life and times of the people in the city during the 19th century. The Lake Shkodra is another tourist destination and acts as a natural border between Albania and Montenegro. Kayaking in the lake amidst the wonderful scenery will never fail to impress anybody.

Theth

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Image: peter_h (CC0), Pixabay

Albania is known for its alpine landscape and it is no wonder that the place has interesting things for those interested in hiking. The Theth valley is not only known for its beautiful mountains but is also known for its affordability. The accommodation options are relatively cheap and offer stunning views of the mountains. The food here is delightfully fresh as farmers rely on their own farms to prepare food. If you’re interested in hiking and nature, never miss out on Theth valley.

Durres

Durres Albania
Image: Matthias Krüttgen – Public Domain

The first port city of Albania, Durres has a lot of things to offer from stunning beaches to unique archaeological landmarks. An important Roman settlement earlier, the city is dotted with pieces of history. It is also known for its vibrant nightlife and also boasts of the largest amphitheater in the Balkans. Overall, it’s a place that must be visited in the country.

Ksamil

Ksamil Albania
Image: Flickr / Artur MalinowskiCC BY 2.0

Ksamil is one of the most popular destinations of Albania and is known for its turquoise colored waters and crystal-clear beaches. The year-round pleasant climate is just enough for the tourists to enjoy their stay at this spectacular destination. The lush nature and the incredible scenery of the mountains only add beauty to this fantastic destination. It has a lot of fun things to offer that one must not miss out on.

There are still people out there who aren’t aware of such a beautiful destination like Albania. The place is filled with amazing things that might make one think to immigrate to the country. It’s a destination that should be on every traveler’s bucket list.

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