This metropolitan capital has undergone modernization at lightning speed while much of its Ottoman, Italian, and Communist architecture recall its history and old-world spirit. There are plenty of churches, mosques, museums, galleries, and shopping malls to visit, but Tirana is most giving when you immerse yourself in it. Surrounded by a beautiful lake on one side and the Dajti Mountain on the other, this capital may actually bring you closer to nature. As well as its intriguing mix of architectural styles, Tirana has a range of cultural activities that pulls you back to the enjoyment and pleasures of live.
Is one of the oldest city in Albania and one of the most attractive, the view of its white house’s climbing up the hillside to the citadel is one of the best-known images of Albania. The characteristic windows of the traditional houses mirror one another beautifully from across the river. The medieval Castle of Berat houses an outstanding collection of icons painted by Onufri. Berati won recognition as a Unesco World Heritage Site in July 2008.
Shkodra is the cultural capital of northern Albania, which has been a highly significant city during most of its long history. Shkodra has one of Albania’s best castles attractive domestic architecture and several excellent museums .It is one of the most important cities of Albania and is also known to be the center of Albanian Catholicism culture and harmony between different religions. It is a good base for excursions into the wild and beautiful Albanian Alps.
Rich in history and tradition, Kruja has been fortified since ancient times. From the road below, Kruja's houses appear to sit in the lap of a mountain. The city’s famous bazaar serves as a bridge between this glorious past and the present, offering a rich design of traditional products made from local artisans. The buildings and museums within the castle walls, combined with the attractively restored bazaar area just outside them, provide an excellent introduction to Albanian history and traditions.
Korca is one of the main centers of the cultural and economic renaissance of Albania. Southeastern Albania is fascinating and little-explored corner of the country, with dozens of medieval churches, is an ideal base from which to visit these attractions. It is also home to the magnificent National Museum of Medieval Art. The city itself is refreshingly civilized, with clean streets, green place, with a friendly population and some gorgeous countryside nearby.
One of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites, this gorgeous, carefully preserved city is built on steep slopes where stone-roofed houses seem to be built on top of one another. From that vantage point, the grey stone of the houses below and the grey slates of their roofs blend into the hillside, distinguished from it only by their whitewashed walls. The castle still broods on its hill, overlooking the whole city and the river valley below. The “city of stone” offers a number of authentically rich culinary delights and memorable panoramas of the surrounding mountainous.
This typical coastal city where pretty villages and towns dot the hillside above white beaches and transparent blue sea. The city has many unmissable attractions, the wonderful archaeological site and national park of Butrint, the beautiful beaches and crystalline waters of the Riviera. The beach in the town is a pleasant enough place to catch a few rays in between sightseeing. If you want to enjoy a nice meal or drink next to the shining sea, you’ll find yourself at the tail end of one of the most beautiful stretches of coast in the whole Ionian Sea.
The ancient city of Butrint, one of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites, is far and away the most visited archaeological site in Albania. There is so much to see in and around Butrint that anyone with more than a fleeting interest in history or archaeology could easily spend a whole day (or more) there. What is especially wonderful is that its many gorgeous, well-preserved monuments reflect eachspecific stage of its rich history, starting from the Hellenistic period and continuing on to the Roman, Byzantine and Venetian periods.
The Bay of Vlora is one of the largest coastal cities of Albania, where the Adriatic and Ionian seas divide, and the city has a real southern Mediterranean feel to it. This city is at once home to the traditional polyphonic music, lovely culinary delicacies, a vibrant nightlife, and some of the best beaches of the south, many of which are found of the city’s coast. For some fresh mountain air, you may leave Vlora and take on the intimidating Llogara Pass, where you will find the superbly view. Vlora has three different museum and is a good base for several interesting excursions.
Pogradec lies on the southwestern shore of Lake Ohrid and is one of the most remarkable cities of Albania for its tradition in hosting “family tourism” for fresh climate during the summer season. The region of Pogradec is rich in striking,distinctive natural and historical monuments. The park along the lakeside has benches looking out on the water, an ideal place for the romantic soul, who explore and admire nature’s peace and tranquility.
The beach at Dhermi is one of the most famous in Albania, a dazzling strip of white rock several kilometers long that is lapped by deep blue water. The sun never seems to stop shining in, with its breathtakingly clear waters, historic monuments, and a buzzing nightlife for locals and visitors. A short climb from the end of the beach leads to a series of huge tunnels blasted into the hillside facing the sea.
Himara is the largest town between Saranda and Vlora, located in southern Albania. The area has a great potential for tourism, with the major characteristics of the municipal town being its seaside walk the tavernas and the traditionally preserved old town built on a hill. With clear blue water and expanse of promenade, Himara is an attractive little resort with good hotels and restaurants.
Apollonia is one of the most important cities in Albania, with a medieval monastery beside the ancient site, which houses an excellent museum. The fascinating landscape of the archeological park, which has been preserved in an exceptionally intact condition, comprises a successful combination between the beauty of monuments and nature. The church of St Mary, part of the Ardenica Monastery, has frescoes painted by the Zografi brothers.
The ancient city of Durres is at once a relaxed beach town and a historical center, home to the largest amphitheater in the Balkan Peninsula. Accurately, the city of Durres also houses the country’s largest Archaeological Museum which shows elements of the ancient cultures that have passed through Albania, mainly Greek and Roman. Alongside its history, Durres also provides loads of lighthearted fun. Modern architectural structures, like the Sphinx, the vibrant promenade and delicious seafood restaurants are a serious part of this city’s charm.
The Valbona Valley is famous for its dramatic gorges and plunging waterfalls as well as for the light-blue color of its water. There are plenty of short hikes in the Valbona area, to mountains, lakes and spectacular waterfalls. This natural wonder offers a rare sense of tranquility and beauty, that is not to be missed by those looking for the most amazing of Albania’s natural treasures. As you’ll see, beautiful sights crop up around every corner of this astonish region.
A Roman emperor, a Sultan, fascists and communists have all made their specific contributions to the construction of this ancient city throughout the centuries. As such, the Castle of Elbasan and the consecutive new city below, combine distinct and perhaps incompatible styles and influences, something that gives Elbasan a truly unique stature. Surrounding this city, there are hundreds of beautiful lakes where locals escape to fish, have massive picnics and relax.
Permet is the pleasant, clean little town in a lovely setting, called “City of Roses” which is surrounded by mountains and Vjosa River. The journey to it, runs along the valley of the river, dramatic gorges and waterfalls that attract many tourists. Permet hosts a folk festival in which traditional musicians come together from all over the Balkans. The thing to do in Permet is to climb a big rock, called the rock of town looking over the town and Vjosa river.