How to Spend a Weekend in Vlora

| © Ewa Szelatyńska / Alamy Stock Photo
Francesca Masotti

If you are planning to visit Albania, don’t forget to include the coastal town of Vlora in your itinerary. Vlora is the third largest city in the country and one of the most beautiful to visit. It is surrounded by some of the greatest beaches in Albania, ancient monasteries, castles and archaeological parks that are unforgettable. Read our tips on spending a great weekend in this sunny town in southern Albania.

Day One

Start your weekend in Vlora visiting Narta, a small village situated northwest of the city. Here you’ll find a Greek community with a lovely, small Orthodox church and typical white houses. We strongly suggest renting a car because buses are not the best option if you want to visit unspoiled places in this area of the Land of the Eagles.

Next, make your way to the Zvernec Monastery, one of the most beautiful churches in the south of Albania. Don’t forget to bring your camera with you to take amazing pictures of this enchanting place. Few tourists know of it, so don’t be surprised if you are the only person with a camera in your hand. For tasty fish dishes, go back to the main street and choose one of the several restaurants located there. The best are the ones without signboards, frequented only by locals.

The monastery of Zvernec in Albania

As we said, the town of Vlora has plenty of interesting sights: one of the best is the archaeological park of Orikum, a small village located south of the city centre. The archaeological rests are hidden inside a navy base, so you will need special permission by the soldiers to visit it. They usually let visitors see it. Did you know that Orikum was the first city taken by Julius Caesar during his invasion of Epirus? The Roman emperor described it in his masterpiece, De Bello Civili. Albania is full of surprises.

The road to Orikum, Vlora, Albania

One of the best place to dine in Vlora is the recently renewed Lungomare. This boulevard offers breathtaking views over the sea and the nearby Karaburun Peninsula and Sazan Island. Lungomare has plenty of restaurants, such as Mustafa, but you’ll want to keep going until you reach Uje Ftohte, at the end of the boulevard. This is where you will find Amantia, a place with a beautiful terrace frequented mostly by locals.

During the summer months, Vlora turns into one of the liveliest places in Albania and the Balkans. Most Albanians from Tirana, Kosovo and the surrounding areas come here to spend their holidays, so Vlora has a great reputation for nightclubs. It’s a great place to spend the night out having fun. The coast has plenty of great nightclubs, discotheques and cafés. One of the coolest is Coco Bongo, a beautiful club in front of the beach.

When you are ready to sleep, spend the night at Hotel Lido, one of the most beautiful accommodations in Albania.

A colorful cocktail

Day Two

The best thing to do on your second day in Vlora, is to first have a great breakfast of trilece (a cake made with milk and cream) and a Turkish coffee at the beautiful port-side cafe, Piazza, and second, buy a ticket for the Karaburun Peninsula and Sazan Island. Teuta Boat Tours departs every day at 9 am from the port of Vlora, near Hotel Bologna, and returns in town at 5 pm. In those eight hours, you will have the chance to swim in crystal clear waters, relax, visit natural caves, admire great panoramas and eat fresh fish at the restaurant located right on the beach.

Relax at the beach

Once back in town, if you are not too tired, head to the ancient castle of Kanina to admire breathtaking views over Vlora. The castle, erected in the third century BC, was reconstructed by Justinian I in the sixth century AD and is said to be one of the oldest and largest in the Vlora region. Now there are only a few rests of the old fortress, but it is still visible and easy to imagine how big it was.

The ruins of Kanina’s castle

Vlora has a great variety of restaurants and bars, but if you are looking for great, crispy, fried fish, go straight to Piceri Restoran Mustafa2, one of the best restaurants in town. If you don’t like fish, don’t worry, this beautiful restaurant also offers great pizza, pasta and vegetarian options.

Fried fish and potatoes

For your last night in Vlora, go straight to Summer Depo. During the day, this beautiful place is one of the classiest bathhouses in town. When the sun goes down, Summer Depo becomes one of the coolest places to have fun, dance and drink excellent cocktails.

Strawberry cocktail with mint and lemon
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.