A Tour of Durrës' Archaeological Landmarks

The Venetian Tower of Durrës
The Venetian Tower of Durrës | © kosta korçari / Flickr
Francesca Masotti

Durrës is the second largest city in Albania, after the capital Tirana, and is one of the oldest settlements in the Mediterranean. Inhabited since ancient times by Illyrians, Greeks and then Romans, Durrës is home to some of Albania’s most important archaeological sites. Here are some of the best sites to visit.

The Amphitheatre of Durrës

Durrës is a combination of old relics and new masterpieces. One of the greatest archaeological sites of the Balkan Peninsula is located just behind the port of Durrës. We are talking about the Amphitheatre of Durrës, the largest in Albania and the Balkans. In ancient times, it could host almost 20,000 spectators. The amphiteatre was built in 100 AD by Hadrian, but it wasn’t until the 1960s when it was rediscovered. For less than 3€ (the entrance costs only 400 lekë), it is worth a visit. We suggest taking lots of pictures. Near the amphitheater is a plentiful array of colorful and stunning murals. So, don’t forget to save a few extra minutes to look for them and appreciate their unique qualities.

Amphitheatre of Durrës, Rruga Kalase, Durrës, Albania

- embed -

The Tower

Just at the entrance of the town, not far from the port, there is a beautiful Tower known as the Venetian Tower of Durrës, (it is called this because it was reinforced by the Venetians before the Ottomans conquered the town). This monument consists of a single tower and is an extension of the Byzantine Fortress of Durrës. Walking throughout Durrës, you’ll see the ancient walls of the fortress that lead to the amphitheatre. Unfortunately, the tower is located near the street, so it is very hard to admire because of traffic.

Tower and ancient Walls, Rruga Anastas Durrsaku, Durrës, Albania

- embed -

The Byzantine Forum

Walking through the city centre of Durrës, near the Aleksander Moisiu Theatre, you will be able to admire a bathhouse that dates back to the second century A.D. and a Byzantine forum of the fifth and sixth centuries with gorgeous marble columns. The forum was most likely built at the time of the Roman Emperor Anastasius I Dicorus, who reconstructed the city’s defenses. Nestled between modern buildings, this forum was the traditional centre of old Dyrrachium, and today it is an interesting place to visit.

Byzantine Forum, Rruga Aleksander Goga, Durrës, Albania

The Archaeological Museum

If you haven’t had enough history, the Archaeological Museum of Durrës is a must-stop along this archaeological tour. Just a few steps from the sea, the museum is very important to the preservation of historic relics in the Balkan Peninsula, and it is the largest museum in Albania. It houses several artifacts that were found in the area, as well as mosaics, miniature busts of Venus, funerary steles and stone sarcophagi.

Archaeological Museum of Durrës, Rruga Taulantia 32, Durrës, Albania

- embed -
culture trip left arrow
 culture trip brand logo

Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip

meet our Local Insider


women sitting on iceberg


2 years.


It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.


I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!

culture trip logo letter c
group posing for picture on iceberg
group posing for picture on iceberg

Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.

map of volcanic iceland trip destination points
culture trip brand logo
culture trip right arrow
landscape with balloons floating in the air


Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world

Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.

Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.

Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.

Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.

We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.