lower Balkans & Greece travel blog

stone roofing .....

...... and paving dominate Gjirokaster.

Gjirokaster Castle was enormous.

don't know what it was but it was good.

the gorgeous old town sits on a gentle slope close to the...

Mercedes is top dog in Albania......but from a dubious past.

driving on the cobbled streets 'rattled' your bones.


From Dhermi it was an enjoyable, leisurely drive to our next base, Gjirokaster, close to the border with Greece. A lunch stop on the way in Sarande was a tad dangerous, not for the food, for the shops.

Finally, Gilli found herself a sunhat..... and all was good.

'All was good' did not last all that long. The GPS did it again.

We took the recommended road towards our next home-base and followed it for around 18 kms until confronted with a lumpy, rocky, unpaved surface. Stuff that. We remembered our pact. We turned around, back-tracked, and found a signed 'new road' to our destination. We felt good.

That feeling did not last. The 'new road' was marginally better but at least it was surfaced and we did gain some confidence. We eventually arrived at the historic town of Gjirokaster.

Our 'hotel' was located in the 'back blocks' along very old cobbled lanes but was brilliant. We were relieved as it did seem our selection was a bad one. Our host could not do enough for us which reminded us of our great experience way back in Pimonte.

Gjirokaster was an ancient town with the best castle we have seen to date. It was enormous and not unlike some Crusader ones in Jordan. A brilliant museum was housed within its cavernous interior.

Walking the town's old stone paved roads was hard on the feet but worth the pain. Fortunately for us our hotel host drove us to various sites and even picked us up otherwise we might not have survived. The cobbled roads were narrow with numerous blind corners and very dangerous.

A referred restaurant where traditional food was served was brilliant and the staff were great fun. We tried all sorts of things and were generally impressed. Even Davy tucked in to some strange stuff and survived. In fact we returned another evening for more.

Next stop was Korce so we left Gjirokaster early for the five hour drive.




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