What to see in Tirana in 3 days

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Martí Micolau
@martimicolau
SOURCES CONSULTED:

wikipedia.org, lonelyplanet.com

Author and references

If you want to visit one city ​​with an oriental style but leaning towards typically European modernity, Tirana is an excellent choice, to combine for example with wonderful beaches Albanians, with his own ancient Ottoman evidence (Et'hem Bey Mosque) and those of a communist past, it is also a place full of culture, excellent traditional Albanian and local dishes for all tastes. So here it is what to see in Tirana in 3 days!



Index

  1. 1 day
  2. 2 day
  3. 3 day
  4. How much does a weekend in Tirana cost
  5. User questions and comments

1 day

1 - Morning: Breakfast, Scanderbeg Square, Et'hem Bey Mosque, New Orthodox Cathedral, Clock Tower

Your discovery tour of Tirana could start from the famous one Piazza Scanderbeg, famous and emblematic of the communist regime, first, however, we advise you to have breakfast in the immediate vicinity or at Mulliri Vjetër, a nice place where you can spend € 5,00 per person.

In the center of the square is the bronze statue dedicated to the Albanian hero Scanderbeg, famous for having repelled the Turkish invaders. Here you will also find several institutional buildings, like the town hall, characterized by facades colored in ocher and burgundy. Then, while walking, you will come across the beautiful Et'hem Bey Mosque which, with its traditionally Islamic style, represents one of the most interesting and visited monuments in the city. She was the leader of the process of rebellion from the communist regime (which closed it for two years from the moment of its establishment), religious freedom which was later found only in 1991. Admission is free and entering you will be delighted by its colors and typical characteristics of the Albanian style, such as flowers, trees, waterfalls, etc.

Nearby you will also find the New Orthodox Cathedral inaugurated in 2011, the Opera and Dance Theater, the beautiful Clock tower better known as Kulla and Sahatit: its construction, started in 1821, was completed by the wealthy families of Tirana (as tradition dictates), it will also be a fantastic experience climb to the top from which you can enjoy a beautiful panoramic view of the city paying € 1,00 per person.



2 - Afternoon: Lunch, National Historical Museum, Blloku, aperitif

For lunch we advise you to go to Tak-Fak, a typical restaurant where you can eat meat for a maximum of € 10,00 per person, you can reach it in 12 minutes on foot via Rruge Devijimi and then Rruga Fortuzi.

Then then head on foot, passing through Boulevardi Zogul, towards the building that houses the National Historical Museum: it is the largest in the whole nation, you can access it by paying about € 2,00 per person, and it is unique with its 8 pavilions full of almost 4.000 exhibits.

So now you could head to the famous Blloku neighborhood (reachable in 20 minutes on foot) and you will have to cross Rruga Ibrahim Rugova towards the south: you cannot fail to notice the numerous trendy bars and cafes, trendy restaurants and shops for all tastes, while in the past it was the place where the exponents of the communist regime lived; after the fall of the latter, Tirana proudly shows Europe and the world this new modern aspect. Here, for example, you could have an aperitif at Bar Lounge Mellow Mood, very characteristic with its colorful sofas, it could be a great place to stay in company while sipping an excellent non-alcoholic drink (paying about € 5,00).

3 - Evening: Dinner, Lollipop

In the evening you could have dinner at Restaurant Piceri Era "Blloku" starting from € 15,00 per person where you will also find dishes for vegetarians. Finally, a very short walk (5 minutes walk through Rruga Pjetër Bogdani) from the place where you will dine, you can find the Lollipop disco: here you will find commercial music and house music and the entrance is about € 3,50 per person.



In summary:

  • Distance traveled: 6 km / 1 h 16 min
  • Places visited: Scanderbeg Square, Et'hem Bey Mosque, New Orthodox Cathedral, Clock Tower, National Historical Museum, Blloku
  • Tirana: City Walking Tour
  • Breakfast at Mulliri Vjetër (Get directions), Lunch at Tak-Fak (Get directions), Dinner at Restaurant Piceri Era "Blloku" (Get directions)

2 day

1 - Morning: Breakfast, Museum of the Secret Services

Have breakfast at Mon Chéri Coffee Shop for about € 7,00 each, then walk (in about 4 minutes) to the Secret Service Museum: it is a building that, during the Second World War, it was the seat of the Gestapo, and right here the context that the communist authorities used to control the Albanian population was recreated; all the dark past of Tirana and Albania is discovered by the visitor who can closely observe the equipment (even advanced) used to spy on suspects. Admission costs approximately € 5,20 per person.

2 - Afternoon: Lunch, Bunk'Art, Aperitif at Bar Selita

So now start with the L4 bus towards the east of the city, getting off at the Shkolla E Re stop and go to have lunch at Piceri Dajti, spending about € 5,00 per person.

You will find yourself in the immediate vicinity of the famous Bunk'Art: this is the anti-atomic bunker (built at the time of the Communist dictatorship of Enver Hoxha) 2.680 square meters large which today has become a historical exhibition. At the beginning you will walk through a very long tunnel that will take you to the entrance of 5 underground floors divided into 106 rooms of which only 24 are exhibition rooms. It is a place where you can retrace the entire history of the Albanian country through photographic exhibitions and historical relics; the cost of the ticket to access it amounts to approximately € 4,00.

So you could go for an aperitif at Bar Selita (which is a 9-minute walk from the Museum) in the name of relaxation by paying about € 5,00 per person.



3 - Evening: Dinner, Friend's Book House

Then head back to the center of Tirana and go to dinner at Era, an excellent typical Albanian restaurant where you can enjoy both excellent first and second courses, as well as a tasty pizza and you will not spend more than € 20,00 each!

To conclude your evening you could go to Friend's Book House, a nice bookshop café located in Rruga Sami Frashëri very popular with young people, where you can enjoy the evening sitting in the outdoor tables along the long avenue.

In summary:

  • Distance traveled: 11,2 km / 2 h 21 min
  • Places visited: Secret Service Museum, Bunk'Art, Friend's Book House
  • Breakfast at Mon Chéri Coffee Shop (Get directions), Lunch at Piceri Dajti (Get directions), Dinner at Era (Get directions)

3 day

1 - Morning: Breakfast, Pyramid of Tirana, St. Paul's Cathedral, Central Market

Have breakfast at COFFEEHOUSE (breakfast at a cost of € 5,00 per person), then go to the famous one Pyramid of Tirana: That it was built at the behest of the daughter of the dictator Enver Hoxha and to commemorate his death, today it is used as a youth cultural center, as a conference center and also serves as the headquarters of a television station.

A 6-minute walk from it (passing through Bulevardi barjam and then Bulevardi Dëshmorët and Kombit), you reach the St. Paul's Cathedral: externally you will notice a very simple architecture, the interiors have a very particular triangular plan, moreover in one of the windows of the church there are depicted Mother Teresa of Calcutta and Pope John Paul II.

Then then head towards the Central market of the city: open every day from 8:00 to 14:00, you can buy the typical products of this particular city such as the excellent shishqebap, the fergese or the typical Albanian bread!

2 - Afternoon: Lunch, Rinia Park, Taiwan Complex

For lunch you could go to the Sofra Beratase, a typical Albanian restaurant where you will taste excellent dishes for about € 10,00; dedicate your afternoon to Rinia Park which you can reach in 10 minutes on foot through Rruga Ludovik Shllaku, then Sheshi Skënderbej. Here you can relax surrounded by greenery among the acacia, poplar and eucalyptus trees, then on the west side you will find the so-called "Taiwan" complex with a beautiful fountain famous for its water features. The beautiful white building that distinguishes it has inside cafes, restaurants, event rooms and a bowling alley. It would be very interesting to see this Park in spring, period in which yes carries out the well-known "Summer Festival" on March 14 every year, when Rinia Park is frequented for the occasion by artists, acrobats, magicians, jugglers.

3 - Evening: Dinner, Radio Bar Tirana

For dinner we recommend Creperie Piadineri Syri I Kalter, an excellent wine bar with an informal atmosphere where you will spend around € 8,00 per person!
For evening we recommend Radio Bar Tirana: it's a nice place you just enter you will have the feeling of being inside a seventies apartment, with live DJ sets and an indoor garden. You will pay a possible drink which would amount to about € 10,00 per person.

In summary:

  • Distance traveled: 4,4 km / 56 min
  • Places visited: Pyramid of Tirana, St. Paul's Cathedral, Central Market, Rinia Park, Taiwan Complex
  • Breakfast at COFFEEHOUSE (Get directions), Lunch at Sofra Beratase (Get directions), Dinner at Creperie Piadineri Syri I Kalter (Get directions)

How much does a weekend in Tirana cost

Comparing the standards and the cost of living to other countries in the European territory, Albania is one of the cheapest travel destinations and also among the closest to Italy; the cost of your trip may vary depending on the type of holiday you wish to take and the season in which you travel. Certainly the months of July and August are by far the most expensive and in which you will surely find many tourists.

  • Costs to eat: about € 25,00 per day per person
  • Costs for museums and attractions: about € 12,00 per person following the itinerary we suggest
  • Transportation: about € 7,00 per person
  • Hotels, accommodation and b & b: Hotel and b & b starting from € 50,00 per room -
  • Fun: from € 20,00 per person
  • Total cost of a weekend in Tirana: from € 270 per person

Before leaving: useful tips

  • When to visit Tirana: the ideal period to visit the capital of Albania is between the month of May and September, although August is the period when the city will be particularly crowded - find out more
  • the city can be reached both by air and by sea, as far as the former are concerned, the Tirana Airport of Mother Teresa is available from which buses depart, managed by the Rinas Express company, which take you to the center paying € 2,00 each ; as regards the latter, the city is served by the nearest port which is that of Durres where the companies Elladeviaggi, Venezia Lines and Adria Ferres land, then arrived in Albania you will use the train which costs € 1,00 and which takes 54 min in the city center - Flights from € 45,00
  • in the area that includes the historic center (Pazari i Ri and Mujos), as all the most important attractions are located in the immediate vicinity. Hotel and b & b starting from € 50,00 per room -
  • Getting around: within the city you could take advantage of the efficient city buses, there are in fact 20 bus lines available and a ride costs € 0,30. Alternatively, walking is also a good option because it will give you the opportunity to admire the city far and wide - find out more
  • Other: The official currency in Albania is the Lek, however at bars and other places you could pay in euros but it is not particularly advantageous for tourists as they could also charge you exaggerated commissions. We therefore advise you to go to one of the many exchanges in the city

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