Berat weaves its own very special magic, and is easily a highlight of visiting Albania. Its most striking feature is the collection of white Ottoman houses climbing up the hill to its castle, earning it the title of ‘town of a thousand windows’ and helping it join Gjirokastra on the list of UNESCO, World Heritage sites in 2008. Its rugged mountain setting is particularly evocative when the clouds swirl around the tops of the minarets, or break up to show the icy peak of Mt Tomorri. Despite now being a big center for tourism in Albania, Berat has managed to retain its easy-going charm and friendly atmosphere.
Itinerary and price for Berat, Full Day Trip from Tirana:
Depart for Berat at 8:30 am and you will be transferred to this beautiful city for around 2 hours. This is one of the oldest cities and the pride of Albanian architecture. The three major neighborhoods of the old city are Mangalemi, Gorica, and the Kala where the castle itself is located. You will start our tour with the castle area. Visiting the ‘Castle’ involves a steep walk up a cobbled path, but those who make it to the top will be rewarded with a fine view of the surrounding area. You will visit the Museum of Iconography ‘Onufri’ which bears the name of the renowned fresco and icon-painter Onufri, who has left a rich inheritance. This museum is located within the cathedral of St. Mary’s Assumption.
You will also visit the Red Mosque, recognized by its lonely minaret and St. Trinity Church. After the fortress you will visit the Mangalemi quarter and the National Ethnographic Museum. This museum is located in one of the most characteristic and interesting houses of the town, a rich assemblage of traditional objects (more than 1000) and is one of the greatest examples of Berat’s long history and culture. Across the Osumi River lies the Gorica neighborhood, whose houses face those of Mangalemi. The arched bridge of Gorica, built in 1780, is a beautiful architectural monument constructed to link Gorica with Mangelemi. Enjoy some free time to stroll on the bridge. After the tour, there will be optional lunch in a restaurant with traditional cuisine (at extra cost).
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