Berat, Albania: The Ultimate Guide To The Town Of A Thousand Windows
The town of Berat is located 70 kilometers, or 43 miles, south of Tirana in the center of Albania. It’s known for its historic architecture combined with beautiful nature scenery. And it’s nicknamed the “town of a thousand windows” because of the Ottoman-era houses with large windows that overlook the town. So whether you’re a culture lover, history buff, or outdoor enthusiast, Berat offers something for everyone. We’ll show you 6 amazing things to do in Berat, which are best undertaken in 2 to 3 days. We'll also mention where to sleep and eat in Berat and everything you need to know before going.
Check out our video on Berat Albania to get a sense of what it's like there!
Berat Albania Table Of Contents
Important Things To Know
Best time to travel to Berat
You can visit Berat between April and October. The weather will be amazing during these months. In July, August, and September it is very busy though. Also keep in mind that in July and August the temperature is very warm and it rains a bit more in April, May, and October.
Cost & currency in Berat
Everything in Berat is very affordable, from food and drinks to housing. In Albania, they use the Albanian Lek so if you plan on going, keep an eye out on the exchange rates to save more money. Withdraw your money at the Credins Bank for the best rate (and no extra fees!).
Safety in Berat
Berat is a very safe place. Everyone is so friendly and welcoming there. Keep in mind that behind that friendliness they might expect something in return at the end. As long as you use your common sense you will not have any problems in Berat.
Where To stay in Berat
Vila Palma: an amazing villa in a perfect location (short 2 minute walk to town center)
Hotel Klea: a hotel in a traditional house within the Berat Castle
Where To Eat And Drink
Eni Traditional Food Berat: traditional food with local ingredients and wine
Friendly House: great atmosphere and a beautiful look over the water
Homemade Food Lili: book your table in advance because this place is very popular for its amazing food with an experience that makes it complete
Best Things To Do In Berat Albania
There are a lot of things to do in Berat. This is why some activities didn't make our top 6. But if you have more time you should definitely visit these places as well:
The Ethnographic museum
Onufri iconography museum
Sunset from Gorica hill
Hiking in Tomorr National Park
If you're traveling to Berat and want to save time searching for directions to all of the places we mention in this article, then look no further than our custom map. Simply click on a point in the map below to get directions there for yourself!
6. Explore the churches and remains of Berat Castle
Looming over the town, Berat Castle is an attraction you can’t miss! This fortress dates back to Roman Times, but the walls and towers that still stand today are mostly from the 1200s. Within its walls, you’ll find a vast citadel complex of stone streets, houses, and Byzantine churches mixed in with ruins from other time periods. Make sure to visit the subterranean water cistern and the 14th century Holy Trinity Church, which you can also enter!
5. Take in the views from Berat Castle
Apart from the historical sights, the castle also offers the best panoramic views over Berat. Head to the lookout platforms to take in the river valley views. It’s a steep climb to reach Berat Castle from the lower town, but it’s absolutely worth it for the stunning views!
4. Explore the Mangalem and Gorica quarter
Below the castle sit two of the oldest and most picturesque neighborhoods in all of Berat. Mangalem and Gorica sit on either side of the Osumi River and are connected by the ancient Gorica Bridge. Both quarters are composed of narrow alleys of ancient white stone houses, timber doors, and large windows. After visiting these sections of town, you’ll understand where Berat’s nickname comes from! If you want to learn about Berat’s rich history, culture, and architecture, you can also go on a guided half-day tour of these districts combined with a visit to the castle.
3. Take a dip at the Bogove Waterfall
If you want to explore some of the natural beauty that surrounds Berat, the Bogove Waterfall is for you. It’s located 35 kilometers, or 21 miles, from town and it’s easiest to reach by car. The whole area is green and shady with deep swimming holes and cascading falls! It’s super refreshing to take a dip here during the heat of the summer, but be aware that the water is numbingly cold. It takes about 20 minutes to walk from the parking lot to the falls. This is one of the nicest waterfalls in all of Albania!
2. Raft or hike at Osumi Canyon
Not far beyond the waterfalls, you can find the Osumi Canyon. The Osumi River passes through the town of Berat and flows through the canyon, with walls reaching over 80 meters, or 262ft, in some sections! Different seasons offer different types of activities here. During the spring you can see many waterfalls from the bottom, which can be explored by raft. While during the summer, the water is lower and there are more opportunities for river hiking and swimming in the streams. We went on a guided day tour here, which also included a visit to the Bogove Waterfall. This was one of our favorite activities in all of Albania.
1. Go wine tasting at Çobo Winery
The countryside around Berat is known for its production of wine. You can admire the vineyards when driving around, but you can also do a tasting at some of them if you’d like. The Çobo Winery is probably the most famous wine producer in all of Albania. You can find this wine in many restaurants and bars around the country.
Use These Websites To Save Money On Your Trip To Berat Albania
Booking.com for places to stay
Skyscanner for cheap flights
GetYourGuide for local tours
Rentalcars.com for affordable car rentals
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Other Top Berat resources:
If you're looking for some other suggestions and tips on Berat, here are some great articles that will help you:
10 things to do in Berat – Albania’s city of a thousand windows by Adventurous Miriam
Top Things To Do In Berat, Albania For Everyone by Chasing The Donkey