After the collapse of the communist regime,The Republic of Albania was founded, but economic collapse and social unrest made recovery difficult. The raising of popular nationalism together with immigration, mainly towards Italy, has meant some challenging years for Albania but recently the future is looking brighter:Albanian tourism has flourished and a bid has been made to join the European Union.
Albania has produced an absolute giant within literature in the internationally acclaimed and rewarded Ismael Kadare. Born in Gjirokaster in 1936, Kadare has written numerous books that are often situated in Albania. He has won the Man Booker International Prize and has been considered for the Nobel Prize on several occasions. A lesser-known talent, but indeed a rising star, is Tirana-born filmmaker Gjergi Xhuvani who has started to receive attention outside his country for his films.
The main issue with tourism in Albania is the lack of a clear strategy. Nonetheless the beauty of visiting Albania depends mostly on its natural sites. Albanians inherited a number of exclusive historic amphitheatres and mosques resulting from Roman and Ottoman rule, which are listed among the UNESCO world heritage sites.
Amongst the visitors to Albania, Lord Byron has a special place in the country’s history. He collected his travel impressions in his letters, now published in the bookRecollections of the Life of Lord Byron.