10 Best Places and Things To Do in Durrës, Albania

Durrës, a city located on the western coast of Albania, is a historical and cultural gem that offers visitors a wealth of experiences. With its rich heritage, beautiful beaches, and vibrant atmosphere, Durrës has something to offer to every type of traveler. Here are some of the best places and things to do in Durrës:

1. The pier of Durrës

The pier in Durrës is a popular destination for both locals and tourists seeking relaxation, entertainment, and scenic views along the Adriatic Sea. Located in the coastal city of Durrës, Albania, the pier offers a picturesque setting where visitors can enjoy the sun, sea breeze, and great views.

2. Enjoy an oceanfront dining

When visiting Durrës, Albania, one of the culinary delights that should not be missed is the opportunity to enjoy delicious seafood at the ocean. Situated along the Adriatic Sea, Durrës offers a rich variety of fresh seafood delicacies that are sure to satisfy any seafood lover’s palate.

3. Walk through the streets

Walking through the streets of Durrës, Albania is a delightful experience that allows visitors to immerse themselves in the city’s vibrant atmosphere and discover its rich history and culture. Durrës is one of the oldest cities in Albania and boasts a mix of architectural styles, colorful streets, and a bustling ambiance that captivates the senses.

As you stroll through the streets, you’ll encounter a mix of traditional and modern elements. The city’s ancient roots are evident in its historic buildings, narrow cobblestone alleys, and remnants of ancient walls and fortifications. These architectural remnants serve as a testament to the city’s past and provide a glimpse into its historical significance.

4. Enjoy the café culture

Durrës is known for its thriving café culture, with numerous establishments offering a range of coffee options and a warm, welcoming atmosphere.

Finding a café in Durrës is easy, as they are scattered throughout the city, particularly in the bustling city center and along the beachfront. These cafes provide a perfect setting to relax, people-watch, and savor the rich flavors of Albanian coffee.

5. Durrës Castle: Perched

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Image Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Durr%C3%ABs_Castle#/media/File:Torra_ne_Durres.jpg

Perched on a hill overlooking the city, Durrës Castle is a fortress that dates back to the Byzantine period. The castle has been rebuilt and restored over the centuries and offers panoramic views of the city and the sea. Visitors can explore the castle’s walls, towers, and archaeological museum, which houses artifacts from various periods of Durrës’ history.

6. Venetian Tower

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The Venetian Tower is a prominent landmark in Durrës and is one of the few remaining towers that once formed part of the city’s defensive walls. This 15th-century tower offers panoramic views of the city and the sea, and visitors can climb to the top for breathtaking vistas. It also houses a small museum with exhibits related to the history of the tower and the city.

7. Albanian Royal Villa

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Image Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Royal_Villa_of_Durr%C3%ABs

For history buffs, a visit to the Albanian Royal Villa is a must. This historic villa, located on the outskirts of Durrës, was once the summer residence of King Zog I, Albania’s former monarch. The villa has been preserved as a museum and offers a glimpse into the life and times of the royal family, with its opulent interiors and beautiful gardens.

8. Durrës Archaeological Park

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This vast archaeological park, located near the Durrës Amphitheatre, is home to an array of ancient ruins, including Roman baths, a Roman forum, and a Byzantine basilica. Visitors can wander through the park and marvel at the remnants of Durrës’ rich past, with informational signs providing insights into the history and significance of the various ruins.

9. St. Anthony Church, Durrës

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Image Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/St._Anthony_Church,_Durr%C3%ABs

St. Anthony Church reflects the cultural and historical influences in the region. Albania has a diverse history, including periods of Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman rule, which have shaped its art and architecture. St. Anthony Church may showcase elements of these influences, such as Romanesque, Byzantine, or Ottoman architectural features.

10. The Great Mosque of Durrës

The Great Mosque of Durrës, also known as the Mosque of Durrës or the Fatih Mosque, is a prominent religious and architectural landmark located in the city of Durrës, Albania. It holds significant historical and cultural importance as one of the oldest mosques in the country.

The construction of the Great Mosque dates back to the 16th century during the Ottoman period when Albania was part of the Ottoman Empire. It was commissioned by Sultan Bayezid II and completed in 1522. The mosque is a testament to the architectural style prevalent during that time, combining Islamic and Ottoman influences.

Durrës is a city with a rich history, beautiful beaches, and a vibrant atmosphere that offers something for everyone. Whether you’re interested in history, culture, outdoor activities, or simply relaxing by the sea, Durrës has plenty to offer. With its fascinating archaeological sites, beautiful beaches, delicious cuisine, and warm hospitality, Durrës is a destination worth exploring.

Here’s another tip for those arriving in Durrës by taxi from Tirana: Make sure to arrange your return trip not too late. In the evening, it can be challenging to find a taxi available. So, to avoid any inconvenience or delays, it’s advisable to secure your transportation back to Tirana ahead of time.