Want to visit Berat in Albania? It’s a wonderful destination, also known as the White City. Since 2005 it has been inscribed as a World Heritage site by UNESCO, and rightly so.
Berat is one of the most beautiful places to visit in Albania and has some unique architecture styles from various time periods. In this article, I will share all you need to know before you travel to Berat.
THINGS TO DO IN BERAT
There are several historic sites to see here, and I also like to recommend visiting some of the local restaurants, cafés as well as a local winery and handicraft stores.
- Visit Nurellari Winery
- Admire the unique architecture of Berat
- Stroll around the Gorica quarter
- Stroll around the Mangalem area
- Visit St. Theodore’s church and enjoy the view
- Visit the Monastery of Shën Spiridhoni
- Check out the Old Castle
- Buy local handicrafts
- Eat delicious food at Home-Made Food Lili
- Visit the National Iconographic Museum Onufri
- See the cultural monument Halveti Tekke
- Admire the impressive Saint Demetrius Orthodox Cathedral
MORE INFORMATION ABOUT BERAT IN ALBANIA
Berat is an ancient historic city that was originally an Illyrian settlement more than 2400 years ago. Since then, various civilizations have influenced the city, and today visitors can see architecture that has managed to co-exist through history.
The old neighborhoods of the old town are Mangalemi, Gorica, and Kala. Berat has been listed as one of the most beautiful towns in Europe, and it is a great example of a well-preserved Ottoman town.
The old fortified city of Berat is filled with beautiful mosques and churches which are grandly decorated with frescoes and icons. Since 2005, it has been recognized as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
It’s a great pride for the Albanian history and culture, and you will see a great combination of eastern and western cultures. The old houses in Mangalemi and Gorica is one of the highlights when visiting.
The two neighborhoods lie on each side of the Osum River and in 1780, they were connected by the beautiful arch bridge. Berat is also famous for its grandiose Byzantine churches, which shouldn’t be missed.
- Nicknames: “Town of a Thousand Windows” “One above another Windows”, and “The White City”.
- Total population: ~ 117,000 people in the county
- Total area: 379.98 km2 (146.71 sq mi)
- Founded: 6-5th century B.C by Illyrians
- Mayor: Petrit Sinaj
- Country: Albania
HOW TO GET TO BERAT
The nearest airport is in Tirana, but there is no, unfortunately, no direct bus to Berat from Tirana airport. Renting a car would be the easiest options, but you can also go from the Airport to Tirana, and then catch a bus to Berat from Tirana.
The journey from Saranda is quite long as it goes via Gjirokaster, but it can be done in one day, and there is a daily direct service. The cost is 1000 Lek. If you have a rental car, the journey will be a bit quicker at about 3 hours and 40 minutes.
There are several connections daily from Tirana, and the trip is just under 2 hours. The bus ticket cost 400 Lek.
If you want to learn more about the city’s history while visiting, I recommend this historic walking tour that not only takes you to some of the most important sites in Berat but also tell you more about each place, from a local’s perspective.
- Historic City Walking-Tour
DAY TRIPS FROM BERAT
If you’re staying for a few days and have explored the city, then these nearby places might be of interest. They are all beautiful and perfect if you like to spend time in nature.
- Bogove Waterfall
- Roshnik village
- Tomorri Mountain
- Osumi River Canyon
Delicious food and good wine are available in plenty here, so if you’re a food lover make sure to visit some of the following restaurants in Berat.
- Restaurant Mangalemi
- Home-Made Food Lili
- Temi Albanian Food
- Heaven’s Kitchen
I suggest eating some traditional dishes such as pula me përshesh and çorba e Tomorrit.
RECOMMENDED HOTELS IN BERAT
There are quite a few hotels to choose from. It is recommended to book your stay before you arrive, especially during summer.
- Hotel Berati
- Hotel Belagrita
Berat is a wonderful destination to visit while traveling to Albania. If you have more tips and recommendations, feel free to leave a comment below.