Tirana is the lively and colourful capital of Albania and its largest city with its never ending movement and energy. Being the capital since 1920, Tirana is quite a modern city, though the area has been populated since antiquity. Still there are a number of historical sites which you can not pass by while in Tirana.
Being one of the oldest and most historic places in Albania, as well as an important cultural and economic centre, Shkoder annually attracts thousands of tourists. A walk through the historical center (Pjaca quarter, Democracy Square, pedestrian boulevard of Kole Idromeno) with a visit to Mother Teresa monument is a way to find out more about the cultural heritage of the city.
The ‘city of a thousand steps’, Gjirokastra is an outstanding example of an Ottoman merchant town and one of the few still surviving in the Balkans, no doubt nowadays it is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Lying in the historical region of Epirus, the city nowadays consists of 2 main parts: the lovely old city up on the mountain slope, and the new city in the valley below.
Durres is the second largest city in Albania and the country’s biggest port in the Adriatic sea. It is one of the most ancient cities in Albania. Known by name of Epidamnus, it was established in the year 627 B.C. and later flourished as a significant port of the Eastern Adriatic and a vital Roman port of Via Egnatia which was a main trade route between Rome and Byzantium.
With over 300 sunny days a year, Saranda is the sea gateway to the southern Albania and one of the most popular resorts of the Albanian Riviera to enjoy your honeymoon, a family holiday or a getaway with your friends. Although the main beach area is located to the south of the city with a variety of hotels and restaurants which offer catering facilities and accommodation, Saranda attracts the tourists for an evening promenade in the central city boulevard by sea.
Hotels Restaurants Entertainment Attractions Vlore is a vibrant coastal city and one of the most famous resorts of Albania situated on the picturesque Bay of Vlore which is known to be the meeting point of the Ionian and the Adriatic seas. Vlora is proclaimed a hero city. It is an old city, where important events in the struggles for freedom and independence have taken place. In Antiquity Vlora was known as Aulona, one of the main harbour cities of south Illyria, which actually continued to be the main sea harbour in the region through the medieval times up to the present day. The 20th century makes the city remarkable for the date of November 28, 1912 when the independence of Albania from the Ottoman empire was declared by Ismail Qemali who became the first head of state and the president of the provisional government of Albania. Vlora is known among tourists for the quality of the sea and beaches that have received many awards, but also for the lively nightlife in the summer. Due to the development of tourism in recent years, pubs, nightclubs, restaurants and bars have been built up mostly in the area of Cold Water stretching around […]
Berat is one of the most beautiful cities of Albania. The “city of a thousand windows” is located in the picturesque valley of Osum River at the foot of Mount Tomorr. Enjoy the fascinating views of the city and the surrounding area from the ancient walls of the castle of Berat which is still a home to many local people whose houses are neighboring Byzantine churches and mosques built in the Ottoman times.
Pogradec is one of the most charming resorts in Albania because of its location on the Ohrid Lake, one of Europe’s deepest and oldest lakes surrounded by beautiful fields and picturesque mountains. It’s the place where you can feel the authentic harmony of nature, and the friendliness of the inhabitants.
Explore the city of Kruja which is a birthplace of the national Albanian hero Skanderbeg whose troops successfully defended Albania against the Ottoman army that only after the death of Skanderbeg captured the country and reigned in Albanian land for over 500 years. Today Kruja is a center of tourism in Albania, and a source of inspiration to Albanians.
Korcha is a picturesque city with a unique landscape and significant cultural heritage. This is a place where the joy never ends and where modern and ancient architecture are perfectly mixed. In this amazing, colorful and hospitable city, there are many monuments and sights created under the Ottoman Empire.
Albania is a tender sea
Albania is an amazing mountains
Albania is a tasty food
Popular touristic places
Albanian Riviera is a famous coastal area along the Ionian sea at the foot of high and beautiful mountains in Southern Albania. The Riviera stretches from Llogara National Park along the picturesque coast through traditional Mediterranean villages of Dhermi, Himara, Borsh, Qeparo, Piqeras, Lukove featuring ancient castles, orthodox churches with beautiful orange, lemon, and olive groves nearby.
Llogara National Park
Llogara National Park is a wonderful recreation area 40 km south of Vlora at the dividing point between the Adriatic and Ionian Seas. The park is famous for its green forests of pines and fir trees as well as the abundant fauna forming the ecological significance of the surrounding area.
Valbona Valley National Park, also known as “Albanian miracle of Alps”, is considered one of the most beautiful parks in Albania located in the Northern part of the country in the very heart of the Accursed Mountains (aka Prokletje).
Theth National Park
Theth National Park is definitely one of the most beautiful sites of Albania located at an altitude of 1200 to 2567 m above sea level in extreme northern Albania. Mostly due to weather conditions Theth remains remote. The mountain roads are impassable during the winter months, and the place is accessible by off road vehicles in warm dry seasons.
The “Blue Pearl of the Balkans”, Lake Ohrid lies in the picturesque region surrounded by magnificent high mountains landscapes of Macedonia and Albania. With its unique flora and fauna ecosystems it is one of Europe’s deepest and oldest lakes of a great historical and cultural importance, which is nowadays a UNESCO World Heritage Site annually attracting tourists, pilgrims and scientists from all over the world.
Beaches of Velipoje and Shengjin
The authorities of Albania are doing everything to develop tourism in Albania. Russians and Belarusians for example have received free entry to the country for the summer period. Therefore, beauties of this country became more accessible and the number of tourists who rested on the Albanian beaches, which already exceeds the number of tourists of Montenegro and Croatia, proves that.
National parks of Albania
Albania is famous not only for its wonderful resorts and historical sights, but also for national parks. To date, Albania has more than 10 national parks, most of which are concentrated in the southern part of the country. Most famous Albanian national parks are: • Valbona Valley Located in the north of the country, in the district of Tropoi. Park is located in the upper part of the valley of the Valbona River, in the North Albanian Alps. This park is famous for its caves. Common trees here are european beech, common pine, chestnut, forest apple tree. As for animal one may find here brown bears, wolfs, wild boars, chamois, lynxs. The nearest city is Bairam-Tsurri, which can be reached by a regular bus, taxi or by car from Shkoder or Tirana. • Dajti Dajti is located in the central part of Albania, on the east of Tirana. The park is surrounded by mountains, the main mountain is Dajti (1613 m) with a cable car. In wintertime, Dajti is covered with snow and for this reason it always becomes popular for the inhabitants of Tirana. There are many animals and birds in this region: hawk, mountain eagle, black woodpecker etc. […]
Skanderbeg – Albanian national hero
It is necessary to plunge into XV century in order to understand the history of George Castriotti. That epoch is inextricably linked with the name of the Skanderbeg, one famous Albanian hero. He was skillfully supervising over the state, actively taking part in the struggle against the Ottoman conquerors, who kept in fear the entire territory of the south-eastern part of Europe.This talented commander was born May 6, 1405 and descended from the powerful ancient family Castrioti. As a child, he was given as a hostage to the Ottoman Sultan, so he brought up in the spirit of strict Muslim traditions. He showed extraordinary courage in military campaigns against Serbia and because of that he was named “Iskander-bey” after Alexander the Great (in the Albanian transcription – Scanderbeg). After the death of the father, the Castrioti family lost all its estates, which caused Skanderbeg to leave the Ottoman army in order to restore his possessions, capturing the fortress Kruja. After renouncing Islam and adopting the Christian faith, Skanderbeg led an uprising against the Ottomans. Successful battles and a military-political alliance with Venice allowed him to launch a full-scale war against the Ottoman Empire. The subsequent battles took place with the […]
Albania is one of the countries of the fascinating Balkan region. Its nature may seem very similar to the nature of Montenegro, however, as you know, each place has its own peculiarities and its unique coloring atmosphere. What can surprise an experienced traveler in Albania? Until recent decades Albania was an isolated communist country. Tourism has been actively developed only during the recent few years. However, those who managed to visit Albania, note that this country has become a great and unexpected discovery. Why? Albania is a land of unique objects representing its soleness. There are numerous bunkers, scattered throughout its territory. They were built for military reasons during the communist regime, and now have become one of the local sights. Albania is washed by two seas – the Adriatic and the Ionian. Each coast offers lively and picturesque places to explore. For example, the Adriatic seacoast is presented by the main country’s port of Durres with an antique amphitheater, and on the Ionian coast you can find excellent resorts such as Saranda, Ksamil, Himara, Dhermi, Borsch, etc. In addition, Vlora bay is a unique place located on the border of two seas. The natural resources of Albania are unique […]
Media about Albania: new holiday destination
Due to the communist past of Albania which longed for over 40 years, Albania remained unknown for the rest of Europe and the world in general. However, during the recent decades the country has undergone significant changes in all spheres of life, economical and political spheres as well as in tourism field which is one of the key income for the country’s budget. Today Albania turns out to be one of the most attractive holiday destinations in Europe, which gives the reason to the foreign media for constant news circulation about Albania. NY Times promoted “the rugged beauty” of Albanian coast as a a 4th destination out of 52 best places to go in 2014. Today the country makes the headlines as a 2017 destination one should definitely visit. Los Angeles Times admits Albania along with Greek islands will substitute the Turkish ports due to safety reasons, thus becoming a new destination for cruise lines travellers who will embark in Saranda, the southern port of Albania, during the summer season. MSC Cruises company has already included Albania to the itinerary. CNN has recently included Albania to the list of 17 best places to visit in 2017 as a “sunny, cheap […]
Coffee traditions in Albania
Despite Albania is not the place where coffee beans are grown, the population of this small Balkan country has inherited coffee traditions since the times of the Ottoman Empire which rulers contributed to the spread of this fascinating beverage among their lands. Nowadays, the first thing that attracts our attention upon arrival in Albania is a great variety of bars and coffee shops in towns as coffee traditions are an essential part of a day-to-day life of Albanians and their culture. No business meeting is arranged without coffee breaks – negotiations or company deals, or important issues discsussions are definitely accompanied by a cup of coffee with its taste invigorating and uniting the business cooperation. While the majority of bars offer popular espresso, capuccino, macchiato and other coffee drinks including iced coffee, at home the local people prefer traditional turkish coffee. Special coffee pots are used to make fresh coffee, each region and even every single family has its own secrets of making this magic beverage. That is why one can not admit traditional albanian coffee has a very special aroma and taste. Albanians drink strong coffee in the bossom of their families, and all family guests are warmly greeted […]
Albanian cuisine comprises ancient traditions of the population living in the present day territory of Albania many centuries ago, it is mainly influenced by turkish, greek and italian cuisine. As a rule, the most common dishes that are typical of the Balkan cuisine – are meat dishes. Albania is not an exception, the day-to-day cooking is characterized mostly by slowly cooked meat, the so-called “qofte” or meat balls and various meat broths. Traditional albanian dishes are tave dheu (casserole meat), fergese e Tiranes (veal stewed with vegetables), speca te mbushura (stuffed peppers). Due to mild Mediterranean climate albanians enjoy cooking fresh vegetables all year around. One of the popular dishes is japrak (grape leaves stuffed with various filling). And pickled peppers with yogurt sauce is a traditional offer for guests as a sign of a great sense of hospitality. A great vaiety of seasonal fruit and vegetables results in delicious jams cooked from figs, apricots, plums, cherries, blackberry, etc. The influence of the turkish cuisine can be easily noticed as albanians use herbs and spices to enhance the flavour of the traditional dishes and have them taste perfectly. An important part of the albanian cuisine is bakery. The local people […]
Featured places in Albania
Cuisine – Mediterranean, European, Albanian, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options. Restaurant features – Waitstaff, Reservations, Parking Available, Street Parking, Serves Alcohol, Wine and Beer, Free Wifi, Seating, Validated Parking.
Cuisine – Italian, Pizza, Mediterranean, European, Albanian. Restaurant features – Delivery, Takeout, Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Highchairs Available, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar.
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The National Theatre
This is Tirana’s oldest theatre, built in 1940 to honour Mussolini on his visit to Albania. The National Theatre is inaugurated as the first professional albanian theater on 24 May of 1945 in the building where it continues its activity to this day.
Moscow Club Tirana
Capable of holding up 1,500 people, Moscow was opened in 2014 and represents the very epitome of contemporary Albanian hedonism.
The Andon Zako Çajupi Theatre
The Andon Zako Çajupi Theatre is the city theatre of the city of Korçë in southern Albania. The theatre opened in 1950 and has been working since, without interruption.
This castle was built in the 3rd century B.C in the village with the same name which is about 6 km from Vlorë.
The mosque was built in 1757. Located in the old Bazaar district. The mosque was originally designed for placement in the New Bazaar of Gjirokastra as a part of the urban plan of Memi Pasha. In 1973, the mosque received the status of “Cultural monument” that saved her from the destruction of the totalitarian Communist […]
Durres Archaeological Museum
The Durres Archaeological Museum in Durres, Albania, established in 1951, is the largest archaeological museum in the country reopened after the reconstruction works in 2015.
Marubi Museum of Photography
The National Museum of Photography “Marubi” is Albania’s only museum dedicated entirely to photography. It houses a vast collection of 500,294 photographs dating back from 1858 when the first images in Albania were recorded.
National History Museum
The National Museum of History (Albanian: Muzeu Historik Kombëtar) in Tirana, Albania, is the country’s largest museum. It was opened on 28 October 1981 and is 27,000 square metres in size, while 18,000 square metres are available for expositions.
Christian Basilica Rruga Dëshmorët e Pojskës, Pogradeci, Albania
Troy Piceri Grill House
Cuisine – Mediterranean, Barbecue, European, Vegetarian Friendly.
Skanderbeg Square is the main plaza of Tirana, Albania named in 1968 after the Albanian national hero Skanderbeg.
Cuisine – Mediterranean, European, Italian, Vegetarian Friendly Restaurant features – Delivery, Takeout, Seating, Waitstaff, Reservations, Outdoor Seating
It’s easy to travel around the Albania!
Albania is one of less known European countries for travelers, lying in the western part of the Balkan peninsula it is washed by 2 seas: the Adriatic sea and the Ionian sea. Having being isolated for decades, nowadays Albania is ready to open its soul for its visitors. 70 per cent of the country’s land is covered with magnificent mountains and forests – that’s a great choice for extremely active tourists. Alpinism, rafting, cycling, paragliding and even parachuting activities are offered on spot. In summer Albania welcomes tourists with its white sandy and pebble beaches and magnificent azure sea impressing tourists with the pristine beauty of its nature. Moreover, subtropical Mediterranean climate with a hot summer contributes to a great holiday time for those who travel to Albania. The coastal Albania is represented by a number of resorts of the Adriatic and the Ionian seas. The Adriatic coast is rich in sandy forelands, cozy lagoons, gulfs and shallow sea. This area is suitable for a family vacation. The most popular resorts are Lalzit Bay, Durres, Vlore, Shengjin. As for the Ionian sea coast, it is known by its rocky bays with a narrow coastline with the steep mountain slopes hanging over. The picturesque sea bottom, steep slopes and secluded beaches attract those who prefer diving and alpinism activities.
The highly popular resorts of the Ionian coast are Dhermi, Saranda, Ksamil, Himara. However, pristine beaches and blue seas are not the only heritage of Albania. The country is rich in cultural and historical sights due to its many century history. There are a number of ancient and medieval fortresses in Albanian cities. Some towns’ history is dated back to over a century, such as Durres and Shkoder, which have left a great cultural heritage and traditions to present day life. Shkoder is one of the oldest cities in Europe which memories date back to the V century BC as a town lying on an ancient trade way. Rozafa castle is located near the city. Durres is one of the oldest cities of Albania, which nowadays hosts the main country’s sea port, Roman time ruins, a great amphitheater and the Venetian Fortress. The beautiful nature of Albania is represented by the reserved areas and national parks lying not only in the mountains, but in the coastal areas as well. Albania is a land of several UNESCO sights – an archaeological park of Butrint and the historical centers of Berat and Gjirokaster. If you have not yet visited Albania you are likely to ask why to do it. And the answer is – for impressive emotions and memories, for the beauty of the surrounding nature behind the clean sea and beautiful beaches. And we hope that our web site www.albaniatravel.today will be a reliable guide in your journey!