9 Best Things to do in Korca, Albania
Upon a recent trip to Korce, I was pleasantly surprised at how incredible it was, and confused as to why I hadn’t visited sooner! The city is a popular weekend trip for Albanians who live in Tirana as it’s about a 3-hour drive from city to city. Korca is now being voted as one of the top places to visit in Albania but tourism is still relatively new to international travellers.
The city is filled with great things to do from exploring the market, getting the best view of the city and eating your heart out on Qofte!
Here are the 9 best things to do in Korca, Albania
1. Get the best view of the city
One of the best things to do in Korca is to climb the stairs of the red tower. Here you get an amazing view of the city. Entry only costs 50 Lek. I highly recommend visiting at sunset when you can enjoy the view of the city at golden hour. Take note that the elevator doesn’t work to take you to the top so you do have to walk around 8 flights of stairs.
2. Hang out in Pazari I Vjetër
This is my favourite part about Korce, the bazaar! This is the most popular place to hang out and wander. The cobbled lined streets, old architecture and ambience mimic something from a fairytale. The Old bazaar was renovated recently and has really given it a new lease on life. There are many bars, restaurants and boutique to check out. Don’t forget to pick up Albanian souvenir while you are there.
3. Gaze at the largest Orthodox church in Albania
This beautiful church is probably the most impressive one I have ever seen. The architecture is just incredible. This is actually the largest Orthodox church within Albania. It was built in 1995 after the original cathedral was destroyed during communism as all religion was banned throughout the country.
4. Eat Qofte
Qofte is one of the best things to eat in Albania and throughout the Balkans (except for vegetarians or vegans!). Qofte is mince with spices, onion and some other secret ingredients. It’s like meatballs but with way more flavour. The outside should be a little crispy with the inside being soft and sort of melting in your mouth. I’m drooling while writing this if you can’t tell already. One of the best places I had Qofte (said chofta) was in a restaurant within the old bazaar.
5. Have Korca in Korca
While you’re a beer-drinking then you will notice on your time in Albania that you may have the beer called Korca, well that’s because it’s produced in Korce.
There is a brewery in Korca which is popular however despite it being a great thing to do on paper, I do not recommend going there despite what all the guidebooks tell you. The service is very bad. I waited over 30 minutes at a table and was constantly ignored by all the waiters even after calling them several times and them acknowledging I was there. It seems this is a common theme reading the reviews online too. So, instead, I suggest going to a bar within the old bazaar and enjoying a cold glass of Korca while people watching.
6. Take a nightly Gjiro (walk) down Shën Gjergj
This is the main boulevard of Korca and is a great place to soak in local life. Here you will find many cafes and bars to have a coffee or a nightcap in and it’s a great spot to people watch. At one end you have the cathedral and on the other, you have the red tower where I talked about earlier.
7. Visit the museum of medieval art
Korce have many great museums but one of the most interesting is the museum of medieval art! This museum has over 7000 pieces of art and was started in 1980. Entry costs 700lek.
8. Visit the National education museum
One of the most important museums in Korca and Albania is the national education museum. If you want to learn more about the Albania culture and language then this is a great place to do so! This building was the first school in Albania which opened in 1887.
This museum will show you the struggles of the Albanian language which is so complex and not similar to any other language in the world! Trust me, it’s hard as I am studying it right now!
9. Take a day trip to Voskopojë
I had never heard of Voskopojë until my boyfriend mentioned it. Voskopojë is a popular place for Albanian tourists but I didn’t see many international tourists while I was there. It’s such a beautiful place which is known for having an abundant amount of churches.
In fact, originally this small sweet village had 24 churches all built between the 16th and 18th century. Only 8 of them stand today, which is still a lot for such a small place! Voskopojë is only a 30-minute drive from Korca, making it a fantastic day trip to the countryside.
Where to stay in Korce? If you are coming in the weekend I highly recommend booking ahead as the city can get full of weekend tourists coming from Tirana. I used Airbnb on Korce but wouldn’t recommend the one we stayed in however there are some other great properties on Airbnb (Take this $35 free credit).
One of the most recommended places to stay in Korce is Villa Ester. It’s one of the most beautiful accommodation options with the best reviews!
If you’re travelling to Albania, make sure you don’t miss the chance to visit one of the most beautiful cities.
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- 26 Incredible Things to do in Tirana, Albania
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