N°7 - 500 lek

tirana.inyourpocket.com
Hotels Restaurants Cafés Nightlife Sightseeing Events Maps
TIRANA
Traditional wear
The Spahiu Collection
Tirana Rocks
The domino district
January - June 2010
“In Your Pocket: A cheeky, well-
written series of guidebooks.”
The New York Times
3
CONTENTS
January - June 2010 tirana.inyourpocket.com
Arriving in Tirana 5
How to get here
Glossary 6
Tirana from A to Z
History 8
Occupations, liberations, damnations
Culture 9
Cinemas & theatre
Traditional dress 10
Delicately embroidered works of art
Where to stay 11
A good night’s sleep for €5, or €2530
Restaurants 23
From Albanian to Japanese, Tirana has it all
Cafés 30
Sip your kafe ekspres here
Nightlife 31
Drink and dance the night away
Contents
What to see 35
Mosque, tower, horse
Around town 39
Mountains, caves, castles and towns
Getting around 40
Planes, buses, trains and cars
Language 46
Speak shqip
Shopping 48
Souvenirs, fashion and malls
Mail & Phones 50
Keeping in touch
Directory 51
From banks to real estate agents
Maps & Index
City map & Street register 60-61
Index 62

Palm trees conceal the Tirana International Hotel
Selling persimmon fruit along the airport road
www.inyourpocket.com
Located amidst government buildings and
embassies in the heart of Tirana, this new complex
is the capital’s only 5-star hotel and the unrivalled
choice for international travelers and impeccable
business events. Shops, bars and restaurants await
you right outside in the Sheraton Plaza Shopping
Mall, just moments from your room.
151 rooms, including 95 deluxe rooms, 55 suites and the
Presidential Suite
50 Club rooms with exclusive access to the Club Lounge
“Metropolitan” Restaurant offering Albanian and
international cuisine
“Infinity” Bar & Terrace
Function rooms for over 500 guests
Indoor and outdoor swimming pools
Health club with fitness centre and sauna
Shopping Mall with a variety of shops & cafés and a cinema
“Il Pomodoro” Food Court located in the Shopping Mall
Sheshi Italia, Tirana, Albania
Tel: +355 42 274707
Fax +355 42 274711
reservations.tirana@sheraton.com
www.sheraton.com/tirana
4
Tirana In Your Pocket
FOREWORD
tirana.inyourpocket.com
5
January - June 2010 tirana.inyourpocket.com
For once, Albania made all the right headlines in
2009. Foreign tourism boomed as backpackers and
increasing numbers of cultural travellers discovered
the country, and business was not as bad as it
could have been, with the country registering one
of the few positive growth rates in Europe. On the
ground in Tirana, it’s been a busy year with plenty of
new restaurants and hotels opening up, all of them
reviewed in this new edition. Tirana In Your Pocket
enjoyed growing popularity in 2009 too, and we’ve
fattened the guide by 12 pages this issue.
One exciting new story regards the building of the
much-discussed Tirana Rocks project, several
large blocks seemingly dropped on the lakeside
in the city centre, which may well come to define
Tirana’s new look (if they don’t run out of money
first). See page 58 for the details.
Our special feature this issue concerns Albania’s
veritable treasure trove of traditional costumes.
There are 300 different types of dress in this small
country, and these beautiful costumes and items
can be viewed at Tirana’s National Museum as well
as at the private Spahiu collection; see page 10.
Like everything in the Albania, Tirana In Your
Pocket is continuously under construction and
your comments and tips are welcomed. Add your
personal review for any place you like (or hate) to our
website, or write in to tirana@inyourpocket.com.
By plane
Tirana’s gleaming Nënë Tereza (Mother Teresa) airport,
17km northwest of Tirana, is a 30-45 minute drive from the
city centre. Beside the baggage carousel in arrivals there’s
an ATM, a BKT currency exchange office with so-so rates
and the airport’s tourism information desk. Buy a local
SIM card at the Vodafone or Eagle Mobile shops. Ignore
the taxi drivers harassing new arrivals, but take an official
yellow airport taxi to the centre for 2000 lek, or 2500 lek at
night. Alternatively, hop on the hourly Rinas Express airport
bus (250 lek) to Skanderbeg Square, departing every hour
between 08:00 and 19:00.
By train
Albania has no international passenger trains. Weary rail
arrivals from Shkodra, Durrës and Pogradec will find them-
selves deposited at Tirana’s garden shed train station, at the
northern end of Blv. Zogu I. It’s a 15-20 minute walk down this
boulevard to Skanderbeg Square, a short taxi ride or a hop on
any bus heading that way from the bus stop across the street.
ARRIVING
Copyright notice
Text and photos copyright Tirana In Your
Pocket 2006-2010. Maps copyright
cartographer. All rights reserved. No part
of this publication may be reproduced
in any form, except brief extracts for
the purpose of review, without written
permission from the publisher and
copyright owner. The brand name In Your
Pocket is used under license from UAB
In Your Pocket (Vokieciu 10-15, Vilnius,
Lithuania tel. +370 5 212 29 76).
Editor’s note
The editorial content of In Your Pocket
guides is independent from paid-for
advertising. We welcome all readers‘
comments and suggestions. We have
made every effort to ensure the accuracy
of the information at the time of going to
press and assume no responsibility for
changes and errors.
By bus
Tirana has skipped the ‘build a bus station’ stage of urban
evolution, and buses drop off passengers at various points
along the ring road; from there you’ll need a taxi or city bus
to get to the centre.
By car
Driving to Albania is an option now that roads and safety
have greatly improved - but don’t expect to get there quickly.
Coming from Greece, expect long queues and grinding
bureaucracy on both sides of the border. The Kakavija and
Kapshtica crossings are open 24hrs; Qafë Boti near Konispol
and Tre Urat near Permet open till 22:00.
From Macedonia, Qafë Thanë is the main crossing, though
the Tushemisht crossing near Pogradec is quieter, has
beautiful scenery and few delays. Together with the Bllade
crossing near Peshkopi they are all open till 22:00; the Gorica
crossing near Lake Prespa is open till 19:00.
From Kosovo, you can quickly cross over at Qafë Morina and
Qafë Prush, from Montenegro at Han i Hotit and Muriqan.
By ferry
Arriving by ferry from Italy is perhaps the most relaxed way of
entering the country. There are ferry lines from several Italian
cities to the ports of Durrës, Shengjin and Vlora. Flying to
Corfu and using the daily ferry to Saranda or the summertime
hydrofoils to Saranda/Himara is often the cheapest way to
reach South Albania (see www.ionian-cruises.com).
The Tirana In Your Pocket city guide is the only dedicated
English-language guidebook to Albania‘s capital, and is
part of a Europe-wide series of acclaimed city guides.
In Your Pocket guides are written for foreign travellers
and residents, to provide honest, critical information that
makes visiting the city easier for foreign visitors. As a
private and commercial initiative, Tirana In Your Pocket
has been written and researched by a team of local and
foreign travel guide experts. The opinions in the guide are
those of the writers, and are not in any way meant to glorify
or denigrate the city, merely to point out the merits and
shortcomings that we think foreign travellers should know
about. Every guidebook has its faults, so we appreciate
any information that would lead to improving the next is-
sue. Emails can be sent to tirana@inyourpocket.com.
Udhëzuesi i qytetit Tirana In Your Pocket (‚Tirana në xhe-
pin tuaj‘) është udhëzuesi i vetëm në gjuhën angleze që i
dedikohet kryeqytetit të Shqipërisë, dhe është pjesë e një
sërë udhëzuesve të njohur të qyteteve në mbarë Evropën.
Udhëzuesit in your pocket janë dizajnuar për udhëtarët e
huaj dhe banorët, por thjeshtë që të sigurojnë informata
të sinqerta kritike që e bëjnë vizitën në qytet më të lehtë
për të sapoardhurit. Si një iniciative private komerciale,
Tirana In Your Pocket është shkruar dhe hulumtuar nga
një ekip i ekspertëve vendor dhe të huaj të udhëzuesve
të udhëtimit. Mendimet në udhëzues vijnë nga ata, dhe
në asnjë mënyrë nuk kanë për qëllim që të lavdërojnë apo
denigrojnë qytetin, por thjeshtë që të tregojnë meritat
dhe mangësitë të cilat ne mendojmë se udhëtarët e
huaj duhet t‘i dinë. Çdo udhëzues i ka të metat e veta,
prandaj ne do të çmonim çdo informatë që do të çonte
në përmirësimin e botimit të ardhshëm. E-mailet mund
të dërgohen në tirana@inyourpocket.com.
About this guide - Lidhur me këtë udhëzues
The sleeve of a precious traditional
costume is embroidered with ancient
patterns. I t’s part of the Spahi u
Collection, Tirana’s foremost private
col l ecti on of tradi ti onal Al bani an
wear. See page 10 for the full story.
Cover story
It has been another great year for In Your Pocket.
We now publish a record 57 guides and mini-guides
across 22 European countries. We print more than
four million In Your Pockets annually. In 2009 we laun-
ched new guides in Korca, Maribor, Bled, Portoroz,
Sarajevo, Banja Luka, Brasov, Lviv and Odesa. In
2010 you can expect to see Prizren, Venice, Vienna
and Glasgow - amongst others – Pocketed.
We welcome enquiries from anyone who would like to
take part in our Pocket Revolution, starting up an IYP.
Send us an email to publisher@inyourpocket.com.
We also want to find out how we can make our guides
better, so please take five minutes to complete our
online survey at inyourpocket.com/survey.
Europe In Your Pocket
Editorial
Editorial management
Rentapocket.com: Jeroen van Marle, Sco
Fact-checking Rozana Malo,
Aldo Merkoci, Sil via Çaushi
Layout & Design Tomáš Haman
Photos Rentapocket
Cover photo Embroidered patterns on a
traditional shirt © JvM
The TIYP team would like to thank Glenda
Pashko, Stavri Çifligu, Ikuko Fujimoto,
Marta Karwat, Carol Zachary and our
good friends at Avis for their support.
Sales & Distribution
Manager Alida Karakushi
(alida.karakushi@inyourpocket.com, tel.
+355 69 306 42 17)
Publishers Gazmend Haxhia,
Jeroen van Marle, Sco
Tirana In Your Pocket
© Albania Experience Sh.P.K
Sheshi Italia, Sheraton Tirana Hotel
& Towers
1430 Tirana, Albania
Tel. +355 4 227 20 55
Fax +355 4 223 20 15
tirana@inyourpocket.com
www.inyourpocket.com
ISSN 1587-2378
Printing Evropa92
Kochani, Macedonia
Published 10,000 copies,
twice a year
“... by far the best coverage of Sofia, Belgrade and
Tirana...”
The Sun-Herald, Australia, September 7, 2008.
“... the most comprehensive source of information about
the Albanian capital that you’re likel y to come across...”
“Finding information about the region can still be difficul t,
but things have got a whole lot better with the launch of
Shkodra In Your Pocket.”
Balkanology.com, 2008
“...a full overview of sights, hotels, drinking and eating
venues in and around Tirana.”
Doing Business In Tirana, Tirana municipality, 2008
“We visi ted Tirana as an independent group. In Your
Pocket has been an excellent help in providing us the
information which we need. There are not any other
companies that suppl y honest hotel, restaurant and
nightlife info.”
Greg Axon, United Kingdom, 4-2-2009
“You are great! Best city guide ever! Keep up the good
work!” Igor Simac, 5-4-2009
“Loved your Tirana publication, it was very informative. I
know officials read your publication and are sensitive to
its message... maybe this will send them one: streets
need to be cleaned up and made pedestrian friendl y!”
Carol Zachary, USA, 5-5-2009
“I’m eagerl y waiting for the new Tirana and Skopje In Your
Pocket guides!”
Jonas Eklund, Sweden, 22-5-2009
Others about TIYP
Tirana’s new Tourist Information Centre is on Rruga Ded
Gjo Luli, right behind the National History Museum. Drop
by to get information about the city and copies of Tirana
In Your Pocket. See p.44 for more information.
Tourist information
6
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
GLOSSARY
Body language and sounds
Albanians, like Bulgarians, Turks, Indians and a handful of
others, shake (or perhaps: wobble) their heads to mean ‘yes’
and nod (or rather jerk the head backwards while emitting
a bold cluck) to mean ‘no’. Every time you see it done, it’s a
pleasant little culture shock. To attract attention, Albanians
cluck, hiss, or in more desperate cases honk madly.
Crime & Safety
The well-being of honoured guests (you) is a major source of
concern and pride for the locals - a tradition dating back to Illyrian
times. Rather than being mugged in Albania, you’re more likely to
be overwhelmed with hospitality. Still, it’s a good idea to apply the
universal rules: stay alert at all times, hide valuables or leave them
at home, don’t wander around unlit areas at night. Be very careful
where you walk - if there’s not a missing manhole lid, there’s
another kind of big hole or bump, bits of sharp metal sticking
out of the concrete, garbage or dog shit. Bring a torch as even
in cities it can be pitch dark at night away from the main streets.
Driving & Roads
The roads may be improving rapidly, Albanians remain the worst
drivers in Europe. Easily distracted, always using one or two hands
for talking on the phone and smoking, eager to honk, disrespectful
of speed limits, ignorant about the merits of seatbelts, stopping
in the middle of the road to chat with a pedestrian relative, and
inconsiderate to other road users, they overtake in corners at high
speeds in their Mercedes as if they were still riding donkeys. That
said, city-centre traffic usually only crawls along at 20-30km/hr
with little risk of damage. Before 1991, only Party officials were
allowed to own and drive around in cars and there were only about
600 cars in Albania, many of them deluxe Mercedes and Volvos.
When the restriction was lifted, Albanians brought thousands
of cars into the country from Germany, Italy and Greece. At
the time, there were no traffic regulations, no driver’s license
requirements, no traffic enforcement and no traffic lights. Much
of this has changed, but driving still requires nerves of steel and
a good map. The maximum speed is 40km/hr in urban areas
and villages, 80km/hr outside these areas, 90km/hr on dual
carriageways and 110km/hr on highways. Drivers should have a
fire extinguisher, yellow vest and first aid kit in the car, and always
drive with the lights on. In mountain areas having snow chains
is a good idea in winter.
Heal th
Although the locals say the water is safe to drink, it’s probably
best to stick to bottled water, which is readily available and
of excellent quality. Albanian cities can be very dusty, so
contact-lens wearers should carry eye drops with them or
consider wearing glasses. Up-to-date tetanus and hepatitis-B
inoculations are recommended if you want to play it safe and
are staying some length of time in Albania, particularly in
rural areas. In case of problems, see the list of clinics in the
directory. Getting health insurance that covers an airlift to
another country in case of serious problems is a good idea.
Money
The Albanian currency is the lek (plural leke). The exchange
rate is: €1 = 135 lek, £1 = 153 lek, US$1 = 95 lek (December
2009), going down by 10% on the euro and dollar in 2009
after years of stability. Banknotes come in denominations
of 200, 500, 1000, 2000 and 5000 lek, while there are
coins of 5, 10, 20, 50 and 100 lek. Although hotels and
some other businesses quote prices in euros or dollars,
payment is mostly required in lek. I f payment in foreign
currency is possible, it usually means you’re getting a bad
rate (sometimes 100 lek for €1) so don’t fall for it.
When asking for prices in daily life, beware the curious habit
Albanians have of telling you the price in ‘old leks’ with an
additional zero (so 100 lek becomes 1000 lek). Despite the
obvious advantages, this is never used to rip off foreigners,
which says a lot about the way visitors are treated in this country.
Al bania was the last country in Europe to have ATMs
(bankomats) connected to the i nternati onal gri d, but
nowadays getting cash using your debit or credit card is
no problem. Albanian ATMs do not charge for transactions,
though your home bank may.
If you insist on bringing along cash foreign currency, you
can change your euros or dollars at banks and (better) at
exchange offices in town. People who still believe in travellers’
cheques can cash them at most banks at a fee and a long
wait. The money men waving wads of banknotes by the
statue on Skanderbeg Square offer competitive rates and
are generally honest. Spend (most of) your lek before leaving
the country as they are worth nothing abroad and there’s no
exchange office in the airport’s departure area.
Smoking
Smoking is officially prohibited in public places since 2007,
though the chain-smoking policemen have done little to
enforce the law. In 2009 efforts were stepped up, especially
in places where food is served, though refusing a client an
ashtray is still seen as the graver sin.
Visas & Passports
Citizens of the EU, most other European countries, US, Canada,
Australia, New Zealand, and Japan can enter Albania without a visa.
Other travellers need to get a visa from an Albanian embassy or
consulate abroad before travelling to Albania. Before you set off,
confirm your entry requirements at the nearest Albanian embassy
or consulate. Check all border requirements at www.mfa.gov.al.
There is no longer an entry or departure tax. Your passport needs
to be valid for six months after departing Albania. EU citizens may
enter using an ID card though we suggest still taking your passport
anyway as airlines and officials are all too quickly confused.
Albania’s population is 3,619,778 (Jul y 2008 estimate).
Apart from Albanians living in Albania proper, there are
more than two million ethnic Albanians in Kosovo, hun-
dreds of thousands in Macedonia and Montenegro, and
an estimated two million in the United States, Switzerland,
Germany, Greece, Ital y and Canada. Al though Albania is
often touted as a majority Muslim country in the foreign
press, 70% of the population is estimated to be non-
religious or non-practising. Of the others, 21% is Muslim,
6% is Orthodox, and 3% is Catholic.
Tirana officiall y has 750,000 inhabi tants (though the
real number may be much higher), covers 42 square
kilometres and lies at 110m above sea level, though
two mountains of 1612m and 1828m also rise within the
municipality. The city has some 30,000 students of which
nearl y half attend the University of Tirana.
Geography
At 28.748 square kilometres, Albania is a bit larger than
Wales or Maryland. The longest ri vers are the Drini,
Semani and Vjosa. The largest lakes are Shkodra, Ohrid
and Prespa. The highest mountain is Mt. Korabi near
Peshkopi, at 2751m.
Basic data
Founded by dentists ROLAND ZHUKA
and ELIONA PRIFTI as
Albania's best dental polyclinic.
With a staff of qualified doctors in
COSMETIC DENTISTRY, IMPLANTATION,
ORTHODONTICS, ORTHOPEDICS,
the clinic offers excellent dental services with the latest
technology, making PERLADENT one of the most prestigious
dental polyclinics in Albania.

Clinic 1: Opposite Hotel Diplomat,
near the Vasil Shanto bridge.
Tel: +355 4 2400 130
Mobile: +355 67 20 555 77, +355 67 20 777 55
Clinic 2: At the entrance to Shijak City
Tel: +355 571 232 59
www.perladent.info
Y O U R D E N T I S T R Y B R A N D
PERLADENT
8
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
9
CULTURE & EVENTS
January - June 2010 tirana.inyourpocket.com
HISTORY
By the seventh century BC, the Ill yrians (the apparent
ancestors of the Albanian nation) settle in what is now
Albania. In 229-168 BC the Romans defeat the Illyrians and
establish the protectorate of Illyricum.
4th Century
The Roman Empire is divided in 395 AD, and the territory
of today’s Albania falls into the Eastern (Byzantine) Empire.
14th Century
The Ottomans invade what is now Albania in 1385. Their rule
lasts more than 500 years.
15th Century
Skanderbeg, the Al bani an l eader, wages a war of
independence against the Ottomans starting in 1443 and
enjoys remarkable success in keeping them at bay until his
death in 1468.
19th Century
In the 1830s, the Ottomans crush Albanian autonomy.
Uprisings break out over taxation policy in the 1840s. After
Russia defeats the Ottoman Empire, the Prizren League
is founded in 1878 to fight for autonomy and against the
partitioning of Albanian territory.
20th Century
Local uprisings break out in 1909-1912. Albanians proclaim
independence in Vlora on November 28, 1912. The Treaty
of London recognises Albania in 1913, but Kosovo is given
to Serbia. In 1914, during WWI, Italy invades Albania. In
1920 Albania regains independence. In 1925 Ahmet Zogu
becomes president of the new Republic of Albania, but in
1928 Zogu proclaims a kingdom and crowns himself King Zog
I. He cooperates with the Italians, who invade again in 1939,
occupying Albania until 1943, when the Germans take over until
their retreat in November 1944. The Communist-led National
Liberation Front takes power. Yugoslavia, Albania’s erstwhile
ally, tries to absorb the country, causing Albania to break with
Belgrade in 1948. After 1956, when most of Eastern Europe
undergoes de-Stalinization, Albania maintains a hardline stance.
It criticises the Soviet Union, with which it breaks relations
in 1961. In 1968 Albania withdraws from the Warsaw Pact.
Albania cultivates relations with China. Imitating Beijing, Albania
purges ‘reactionary’ influences. In its own version of the Cultural
Revolution in 1967, it outlaws religion and closes all 2169 of
the country’s churches and mosques. In 1978 the leadership
condemns even China as revisionist and is left with no friends.
Party head Enver Hoxha dies on April 11, 1985.
1990
After the totalitarian regimes collapse everywhere else
in Eastern Europe, Communist Party leader Ramiz Alia
announces cautious democratisation in March. Reform
comes slowly. The People’s Assembly rescinds the ban on
religion and on travel abroad in May. On December 12 the
Democratic Party is founded, Albania’s first non-Communist
party in the postwar era. Nine days later, the authorities
dismantle the statue of Stalin in Tirana.
1991
In February, students at Enver Hoxha University launch a
strike, demanding reforms; weeks of protests culminate in
the toppling of Enver Hoxha’s statue in Skenderbeg Square.
Waves of refugees flee the country in March. On March 31
the first multi-party elections in 68 years result in a victory for
the Communists. In June the faults in the economy become
clear when thousands of Albanians seeking asylum in Italy
commandeer ships. An estimated 100,000 Albanians had
fled the country in the previous 12 months.
1997
Coll apsi ng pyrami d schemes spark months of ri oti ng
and lawlessness throughout Albania in January. In June,
parliamentary elections, held amidst nationwide unrest,
result in a landslide victory for the Socialists. President
Berisha, blamed for all owing the pyrami d schemes to
flourish, resigns.
1999
In response to Serb attacks on ethnic Albanians in Kosovo,
NATO launches an air war on Yugoslavia on March 25. The
war turns Albania into a NATO base of operations, and by May
500,000 Kosovars have flooded into the country.
2001
In October, Edi Rama, a former art lecturer and painter
supported by the Socialist Party, is elected mayor of Tirana
and initiates a series of projects that change the face of
the city.
2005
In July, Sali Berisha’s Democratic Party wins the national
elections from Fatos Nano’s Socialists. The election results
are delayed after allegations of voting irregularities and
three deaths. OSCE monitors report that the elections only
partially complied with international standards. Novelist
Ismail Kadare wins the first international version of Britain’s
Man Booker Prize.
2006
Albania signs the Stabilisation and Association Agreement
with the EU, the first step towards closer cooperation with
the EU.
2007
In June, US president George W. Bush gets a hero’s welcome
on his visit to Albania, where he allegedly is robbed of his
watch during a meet and greet with the crowds in Fushe
Kruja.
2008
March 15 – An accident in a factory used for defusing old
munition causes series of explosions, wiping out the village
of Gërdec (14km from Tirana), killing 26 and wounding nearly
300 people. The explosions destroy hundreds of houses,
shatters windows of cars on the highway, and is heard as far
away as Skopje. The defence minister resigns.
2009
April – Albania joins NATO.
June – Berisha’s Democratic Party of Albania wins the
tight-fought national elections, but does not succeed in
getting a majority, requiring a coalition with the Socialist
Movement for Integration party. The elections are at first
declared to have been fair but soon many irregularities
emerge. A political stalemate ensues when the opposition
Socialist Party boycotts parliament after a ballot recount
is refused.
July – Prime Minister Berisha announces that gay marriages
will be legalised in Albania, to the delight of the much-
discri mi nated LGBT communi ty and to the outrage of
religious leaders. The EU announces there will be no visa-
free travel for Albanians due to the slow implementation of
biometric passports; the shamed government promises
results within a year.
December – The political stalemate between the Democratic
and Socialist Parties continues and starts to harm the
country’s progress in reforms and EU admission negotiations.
Other European countries urge the hard-headed parties to
reach a compromise.
British Council I-4, Rr. Perlat Rexhepi, pall. 197, tel. +355 4
224 08 56, www.britishcouncil.org.al. Rent or view books, au-
dio tapes, and videos (classics and recent blockbusters) or browse
teaching materials.QOpen 10:00 - 18:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Goethe Institut H-5/6, Rr. George W. Bush, tel. +355
4 222 20 17. The German cul tural centre has a reading
room with textbooks and literature inside the National Library.
Istituto Italiano di Cultura (Italian Institute of
Culture) H-6, Rr. Pjetër Budi 74, tel. +355 4 237 95
79, www.iictirana.esteri.it. Promotes Italian cul ture and
language with cul tural events and language courses. QOpen
09:00 - 14:00, 14:30-16:45. Closed Sat, Sun.
USIS (United States Information Service) H/I-6,
Rr. Elbasanit, tel. +355 4 224 72 85. Browse American
literature, history books, periodicals and more at this centre
beside the US Embassy. Also at the USAID center. QOpen
08:30 - 16:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Theatres
Metropolitan Center (Cultural Center of Ti-
rana) E-4, Rr. Ded Gjo Luli, tel. +355 4 225 75 28,
q.metropolitane@gmail.com. A cul tural centre that hosts
regular performances by the Tirana City Band, the Spekter
childrens' folklore group, the Metropoli tan Theatre group
(Teatri i Metropolit) and the Tirana Circus.
National Theatre (Teatri Kombëtar) F-4, Rr. Serme-
din Said Toptani, tel. +355 4 222 89 33. This is Tirana's
oldest theatre, buil t in 1940 to honor Mussolini on his visit
to Albania. Performances take place between October and
May, and range from Shakespeare to contemporary Albanian
and foreign playwrights, though everything is in Albanian. Q
Ticket office open 09:00-13:00, 15:00-19:00.
Puppet Theatre (Teatri i Kukullave) E/F-4, Sheshi
Austria, tel. +355 4 222 24 46/+355 4 225 91 04.
Occasional puppet shows for children in a grand old building.
Event information is notoriously difficult to get - visit the
websites of the venues listed here, keep an eye on post-
ers around town, and read the English-language papers for
upcoming events.
Cinemas
Academy of Film & Multimedia Marubi Rr. Alek-
sandër Moisiu 76, tel./fax +355 4 236 51 88, info@
afmm.edu.al, www.afmm.edu.al. The Academy of Film &
Mul timedia, named after Shkodra's famous Marubi photog-
rapher famil y, has a cinema with free screenings of foreign
movies every Thursday at 19:00 during university term. All are
welcome. Find the academy to the northeast of the centre,
near the terminus of the Kinostudio bus line. See the English-
language website for what's on.
Imperial Cinema J-5, Sheshi Italia, Sheraton Mall, tel.
+355 4 226 63 96, www.imperialcinemas.com. Big Holly-
wood productions in two screening rooms, one standard and one
'VIP', inside the Sheraton mall. In summer, there's an additional
summer cinema in the Art Academy. Q Tickets 300-600 lek.
Millennium 2 Cinema F-5, Rr. Murat Toptani, Pallati
i Pionierit, tel. +355 4 225 36 54/+355 69 204 42 37,
www.ida-millennium.com. Inside the former Pioneer Pal-
ace, Millennium shows recent American films in their original
language with Albanian subtitles. Book in advance for evening
and weekend screenings. Screenings at 10:00, 12:30, 15:00,
18:00, 20:30 and 23:00. One fine day, Millenium 1 will reopen
in a new building in the city centre. Q Tickets 200-500 lek.
Cul tural centres
Alliance Française D-4/5, Rr. Barrikadave 122, tel./fax
+355 4 222 56 97, tel. +355 4 227 48 41, info@aftirana.org,
www.aleancafranceze.com. Borrow French books or language-
learning materials. QOpen 08:00 - 14:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Reservations at: 04 22 53 654
www.ida-millennium.com
Address: Rruga Murat Toptani
Kompleksi Millennium
PLOOHQQLXPFLQHPD
10
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
11
WHERE TO STAY
January - June 2010 tirana.inyourpocket.com
TRADITIONAL DRESS
P Air conditioning A Credit cards accepted
H Conference facilities U Facilities for the disabled
R Dataport L Guarded parking
F Fitness centre G Non-smoking rooms
K Restaurant D Sauna
C Swimming pool W Wi-Fi
Symbol key
Until 1991, foreigners could only stay at two dreadful
hotels. Things have changed dramatically, and now a wide
variety of accommodation is available, with several good
new small hotels and hostels. Most are found around the
bllok area, and between the main square and the train
station. Prices vary dramatically, though you can have an
equally good night's sleep in both a top range €2530 suite
and a simple €5 guesthouse bed. If you go for budget ac-
commodation, be aware that English is not always spoken
(try Italian, German or Greek) and ask about their back-up
generator if you like heating in winter or a/c in summer. For
the full hospitality experience, click to couchsurfing.com,
where a few dozen kind Tiranians offer free use of their
couch for you to crash on for a few nights.
The room prices we list include breakfast unless men-
tioned otherwise. Hotel categories are based on the price
of the cheapest double room, not on the erratic local star
system. Prices are often quoted in euros, but generally
have to be paid in Albanian lek.
Cream of the crop
Top-notch rooms, with doubles priced from €150.
Grand H-3, Rr. Ismail Qemali 11, tel./fax +355 4 224
79 96, tel. +355 4 225 32 19, info@grandhoteltirana.
com, www.grandhoteltirana.com. Once you’ve walked
into the Grand, you might not want to venture out again. This
centrall y placed hotel is one of the city’s best, and its small
size adds to its charm. The comfy rooms are complete with
TV and telephone. The hotel also lays on frills like an indoor
swimming pool, jacuzzi and sauna. Q 30 rooms (singles
€120, doubles €160). PHALKCW
Rogner Europapark H-5, Blv. Dëshmorët e Kombit, tel.
+355 4 223 50 35, fax +355 4 223 50 50, info@tirana.
rogner.com, www.hotel-europapark.com. One of Albania’s
top hotels, not just for the rooms but also for its reputation as a
meeting point for both locals and visitors. The Rogner promises
Western standards and delivers - each room is decked out with
satellite TV, radio, safe and fax outlet. The lush garden has a
tennis court and a swimming pool. The excellent Apollonia res-
taurant is on site. Q 137 rooms (100 singles €200, 30 doubles
€230, 7 suites €350). PHARULGKDCW
Sheraton Tirana Hotel J-5, Sheshi Italia, tel. +355 4
227 47 07, fax +355 4 227 47 11, reservations.tirana@
starwoodhotels.com, www.sheraton.com/tirana. A huge
hotel placed at the southern edge of the city centre, overlook-
ing the park. The comfy rooms with ‘sweet sleeper’ beds will
suit the needs of any suit, but for the privileged there are the
two Club floors with private check-in and lounge. Facilities are
top notch, with a heal th club, indoor and outdoor swimming
pools, conference facilities, the Metropolitan restaurant and
a shopping mall. Room prices vary by season, so check the
latest online. Q 151 rooms (singles € 240, 95 doubles €255,
55 suites €380, presidential suite €2530). PHARF
LGKDCW
Xheko Imperial I-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit, tel. +355
4 225 95 75/+355 68 202 97 77, fax +355 4 224 68 52,
contact@xheko-imperial.com, www.xheko-imperial.com.
The most glam hotel in town resides along a quiet street in the
bllok area. The open jacuzzi bathrooms are any girl’s dream,
and the fairy-tale suites with silk-draped four-poster beds
are really rather extravagant. There are less frivolous double
rooms too, and two excellent restaurants. A taller new annex
is under construction behind the building, expected to open in
2010. Q 29 rooms (7 singles €110, 6 doubles €150, 15 suites
€250-350). PHAILGBKW
Upmarket
Reasonably priced luxury; double rooms from €90-140.
Arber E-4, Rr. Bardhok Biba 59, tel. +355 4 227 38
11, fax +355 4 227 38 13, reservation@hotelarber.
com, www.hotelarber.com. An excellent option hidden in
the streets east of the Tirana International hotel. The Arber
has small, efficient rooms, and is mercifull y quiet compared
to many other hotels. Q 25 rooms (5 singles €70-90, 19
doubles €110, 1 suite €150). PHALKW
Brilant Antik F-5, Rr. Jeronim de Rada 79, tel. +355 4
225 11 66/+355 69 297 74 71, fax +355 4 225 11 67,
info@hotelbrilant.com, www.hotelbrilant.com. A welcom-
ing famil y-run hotel in a quiet, central location. The Brilant
Antik has large rooms and a traditionall y furnished Albanian/
Italian restaurant. English is spoken. Q 6 rooms (singles €60,
doubles €90, suites €150). PLKW
Together with Tirana In Your
Pocket, the ci ty’s hotel re-
ceptionists are an important
source of information for trav-
ellers and effectively ambas-
sadors for their country. Good
receptionists will be able to
give you reliable restaurant,
sightseeing and activity tips.
With this series of interviews,
Tirana In Your Pocket intro-
duces you to the city’s most important receptionists.
In this issue, we speak to Gid Shaqiri, Front Office
Coordinator at the Rogner Hotel Europapark in Tirana.
Mr. Shaqiri was working in a smaller hotel until he joined
the Rogner’s front desk team in 2003.
This makes our hotel special... The professional
service, unique atmosphere and the central location.
And also our beautiful Mediterranean garden with pool
of course.
Special guests’ requests... We don’t have too many
strange requests, though once a guest arrived with all
of her eight cats.
Special restaurants I recommend... I like to send
guests to Villa Logoreci or Mama Rosa for Italian food,
or to Sofra e Ariut for Albanian dishes.
Special sights I recommend... I send guests to the
National Museum, up to Dajti Mountain, and to Petrela
Castle.
Tirana In Your Pocket... is very helpful to us as there
is a lot of complex and well-arranged information for
tourists and business people.
Meet the receptionist
Linda and her son Luris are perhaps Tirana’s most
fervent collectors and restorers of traditional Albanian
costumes; they even sold the family house and moved
into a rented apartment to be able to purchase more
clothes. Although they do not have a permanent exhibi-
tion space yet, they are happy to show their collection
and sell some items to interested visitors; the photos on
this page are from some of their top pieces, which include
waistcoats, heavy woollen embroidered xhubleta skirts,
and delicate tablecloths. Visits to their home and storage
space along the road to Elbasan can be booked via tel.
+355 68 304 26 64/+355 68 212 10 08 or atelielinda@
hotmail.com; Luris speaks English and French. Take a taxi
or bus to the first roundabout after the Martyr’s Cemetery
and you’ll be met there. There’s no admission fee, but
donations to help upkeep the collection are welcome.
Linda Spahiu Collection
Albania's rich and varied cultural heritage is perhaps best
demonstrated by the incredible range of traditional clothing.
For many centuries, the Albanians' clothing allowed strangers
to learn all kinds of things about them at a single glance;
region of origin, marital status, the family's wealth and
standing, ethnicity, age, and more. During religious, social
and other special occasions, clothing was a kind of passport,
and within Albania there are about 300 different traditional
costumes, each linked to a specific area or even village.
Clothes were made by specialised craftsmen and women
with cotton, wool and imported silk, and decorated with
colours, embroidered symbols, themes like the Albanian
eagle, natural scenes and patterns, incorporating gold and
silver thread and small river pearls. Curiously, embroidering
was a craft that was only done by men. Styles and fashions
changed over the years as new material s and trends
emerged, but the distinct regional variety remained. The
artisans were so famed that Albania became a centre of
production for the wider region, and positioned along the
old trade routes between west and east, local craftsmen
had access to all manner of quality materials.
As the use of traditional clothing waned in the 20th century,
the cultural and also the real value of these items was
forgotten, and many costumes and related objects were
lost due to carelessness and decay. Apart from the state
museums, there are only ten serious collectors of traditional
wear in Albania, but it's thanks to them that people have been
made aware of the importance of preserving old traditional
wear. A recent law prohibiting the export of items older than
50 years from Albania has ironically increased the illegal and
unprofessional export of antiques and traditional clothing,
leading to identity mix-ups with some Albanian traditional
clothing being exhibited abroad as being from other countries
in the region.
Albania has huge costume collections, the National Museum
alone has 30,000 artefacts, but only a small amount is
exhibited. Places to view costumes, apart from Tirana's
Nati onal Museum and Spahi u Col l ecti on, i ncl ude the
Ethnographic Museums of Shkodra, Berat and Gjirokastra
and the Tradi ta G&T guesthouse i n Shkodra, though
unfortunately the museum displays are often dull, with little in
the way of explanations. Thankfully, costumes are attracting
more and more local and international interest, and both
private and state collections are increasingly accessible.
12
WHERE TO STAY
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
Chateau Linza Qesarakë, Linza, Komuna e Dajtit, tel.
+355 69 203 00 03/+355 69 203 00 09, ada@chateau-
linzahotel.com, www.chateaulinzahotel.com. Along the
road out of town towards Mount Daj ti, the resort-style Linza
hotel is a foreigner favourite for the sweeping city views from
its hillside location. Rooms and apartments are modern and
spacious, and it’s well-equipped for meetings and conferences
too. Q 21 rooms (singles €90-110, doubles €110-150, 45
apartments €150-190). PHAFLKCW hhhh
Diplomat F-1, Rr. Muhamet Gjollesha 5, tel. +355 4
223 31 51/+355 4 225 84 68, fax +355 4 223 04 57,
diplomat@icc-al.org, www.hoteldiplomathy.com. Wi th
a light Scandinavian feel and and enthusiastic staff, the
Diplomat has three floors of excellent, parquet-floored rooms
and a terracotta terrace with bar on the roof. Q 14 rooms (5
singles €100, 9 doubles €140). PHALKW
Diplomat Fashion Rr. Irfan Tomini, tel. +355 4 223 50
90/+355 4 226 72 19, fax +3554 232 07 49, reserva-
tion@diplomatfashion.com, www.diplomatfashion.com.
A different city on every floor. On the New York, Milan and
Paris-themed floors, rooms have decorations on the walls,
cupboards and even the ceilings. Downstairs is a pleasant
library and TV area, a few conference rooms and a small
fitness and sauna centre. Just west of the centre along Bl v.
Bajram Curri. Q 26 rooms (singles €85-110, doubles €130-
160). PHARLGDW
Green House G-5, Rr. Jul Varibova 6, tel. +355 4 222
26 32/+355 68 207 22 62, info@greenhouse.al, www.
greenhouse.al. A small and charming business hotel above
the eponymous restaurant on a quiet street near all the ac-
tion. With well-designed boutique rooms, some with shower
and some also with a bath, great suites and wifi throughout,
it’s a comfortable base. Q 10 rooms (singles €100, doubles
€110, suites €130-150). PALKW
MonarC F-5, Blv. Zhan D’Ark, tel. +355 4 227 45 11,
fax +355 4 227 45 00, info@monarc.al, www.monarc.
al. The MonarC is a classic-looking yellow building on a busy
crossing in the centre, overlooking the Lana river. With onl y
12 rooms, ample attention has been made to details, and
the interiors are characterised by sleek dark design and the
suites come with particularly classy Jacuzzis. Despite double
glazing, street noise is an issue in some rooms, and there’s
no parking on-site. Head to the top floor for the bar with a
waterfall and 360 degree city views. Q 12 rooms (singles
€80, doubles €100-120, suites €130). PKW
Mondial F-1, Rr. Muhamet Gjollesha, tel./fax +355 4
223 23 72, hotelmondial@albamail.com, www.hotel-
mondial.com.al. An elegant and modern hotel with plush
pleasant rooms that favour shades of brown to more frivolous
colours. It’s a kilometre from the centre, 50m from Sheshi
Mustafa Qemal Ataturk. Q 28 rooms (singles €90, doubles
€110, 6 suites €130). PHALKCW
Tirana International E-4, Sheshi Skenderbej 8, tel.
+355 4 223 41 85, fax +355 4 223 41 88, hotel@hotelti-
rana.com.al, www.hoteltirana.com.al. Buil t in the 1970s
with help of the Chinese, for years Tirana’s main landmark
was the only highrise in the country, with propaganda slogans
on the roof and escape tunnels for the elite. Now thoroughl y
modernised, the rooms meet international standards and
the hotel is especiall y popular for conferences. The higher
floors offer great views over town and the mesmerising traffic
on the square. Go online for their special weekend rates. Q
154 rooms (singles €78-149, doubles €91-174, suites €198).
PHARFLGKDW
Rr. Ismail Qemali 11
Tel. +355 4 224 79 96, Fax +355 4 224 79 96
info@grandhoteltirana.com
www.grandhoteltirana.com
OUR PASSION: HOSPITALITY
OUR GOAL: YOUR PLEASURE
14
WHERE TO STAY
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
Vila 3 G-5, Rr. Gjon Pali II, N°3, tel. +355 4 226 65
82/+355 69 206 57 08, vila_3@yahoo.com. Seven
smart rooms in a small 1930s villa set away from the street,
behind the pyramid. Fitted out with flatscreen TVs, sparkling
en suite bathrooms and wifi, it’s perfect for business trips.
The two top floor rooms are large but have slanting ceilings
and only skylights for windows. Downstairs and on the terrace
surrounding the building there’s a good restaurant and piz-
zeria. Q 7 rooms (5 doubles €100, 2 suites €130). PKW
Mid-range
Good value doubles from between €50-90.
Broadway H-3, Rr. Emin Duraku 8, tel. +355 4 225 46 19,
fax +355 4 224 39 67, broadway@icc-al.org, www.hotel-
broadway-al.com. Next to the Selman Stermasi stadium and
within easy walking distance of the bllok area, the large Broadway
hotel has a Vegas thing going on. A glass lift whisks you up to
halls decked out with pharaonic art, with rooms in corresponding
styles, and especially the suites Egypped up quite impressively,
with kitsch on all walls and a massage shower. There’s a decent
restaurant with a lush terrace too. Q 20 rooms (10 singles €60,
6 doubles €80, 4 suites €120). PARLBK
California E-3, Rr. Mihal Duri 2/1, tel. +355 4 225 31
91, fax +355 4 225 31 92, california@albaniaonline.
com. Welcome to the Hotel California, where you can check
out any time you like, but unlike pre-1990 Albania you can
also actuall y leave. There’s no arguing with the location of
this place, and small but pleasant rooms contain generall y
matching furnishings and shiny bathrooms. Check out the
fifth floor, the owner’s favourite. Q 25 rooms (singles €50,
doubles €70, 5 famil y rooms €70). PALKW
City H-5, Rr. Ismail Qemali 8/1, tel./fax +355 4 224 77 99,
reservations@hotelcitytirana.com, www.hotelcitytirana.
com. Clean, quiet and efficient rooms and friendly staff in a small
business hotel down an alley off the street. The views are unin-
spiring as it’s jammed in between highrise, but alternative vistas
are offered by the elegant photos of cities around the world that
decorate the rooms and halls. Ask for the larger top-floor rooms
with balconies when you book. Security is top-notch as the
prime minister lives next door and his goons patrol the streets.
Q 15 rooms (singles €32-60, doubles €75). PARLGW
Doro City D-1, Rr. Muhamet Gjollesha, tel. +355 4
223 22 06, fax +355 4 224 70 70, reservations@
hoteldorocity.com, www.hoteldorocity.com. Along the
busy ring road near the Durrës highway, Doro has quali ty
rooms fitted with plenty of wood, and some boasting large
terraces. It’s a few minutes drive west of the city centre. Q
53 rooms (8 singles €60-80, 45 doubles €70-110, suites
€100). PHARLBKW
Eder F-2, Rr. e Kavajës, tel./fax +355 4 223 91 70,
tel. +355 68 24 71 233, info@ederhotel.com, www.
ederhotel.com. A small hotel with just five rooms of varying
styles, well-equipped for travellers on a budget. Opposite the
Catholic church, a short walk from the main square and just
around the corner from a clutch of embassies, it’s well placed
if you need to pray, play or get away. Q 5 rooms (3 singles
€40, 2 doubles €50). PRL
Elysée H-5/6, Rr. Themistokli Gërmenji 2/173, tel.
+355 4 222 28 80, fax +355 4 224 86 92, info@
hotelelysee-al.com, www.hotelelysee-al.com. A quality
mid-range hotel, wi th friendl y service and a top location
between the US and Italian embassies. Rooms are modern
and quiet, with king-sized beds and iron balconies, though
there’s no lift to get you between the four floors. There’s wifi,
but guests can also use a PC with internet at the reception.
Q 20 rooms (singles €50-65, doubles €75-85, triples €105).
PALBKW
Europa F-3/4, Rr. Myslym Shyri, tel./fax +355 4 227
47 41, tel. +355 4 222 38 76, info@hotel-europa.al,
www.hotel-europa.al. Just a short crawl from Rinia Park in
the centre of town but hidden in a courtyard away from traf-
fic noise, the Europa has small, brown, balconied rooms and
good facilities for business travellers. Free guarded parking
too. Q 18 rooms (3 singles €35, 13 doubles €50-60, 2 suites
€70-80). PRLKW
Ferari B-2, Rr. Don Bosko, tel. +355 4 235 64
02/+355 69 257 51 72. This unprepossessing but
comfortable four-story hotel best serves those who want
to get away from the ci ty centre. I t serves a nice I talian
breakfast and staff are poli te. Q 26 rooms (doubles €50-
60). PLBKDC
Firenze D-4, Blv. Zogu I 72, tel. +355 4 224 90 99,
fax +355 4 227 20 77, firenzehotel@albmail.com. A
surprisingl y good business hotel on the boulevard just north
of the main square. Firenze has charming staff, modern
and well-furnished rooms, some even wi th fireplaces, and
abstract art on the walls. Breakfast is served in the street-
side restaurant. Q 7 rooms (singles €50, doubles €70).
PARLBK
Iliria I-6, Rr. Elbasanit, tel./fax +355 4 237 17 00, info@
iliriahotel.com, www.iliriahotel.com. Recently overhauled,
the Iliria’s glamorous lobby area gives access to the smart
clean rooms beyond, all fitted out with satellite TV, internet
and air conditioning. There’s a restaurant and pleasant café
terrace too. It’s located along Rruga Elbasanit, a short walk
southwest of the city centre, and the rooms are all sound-
proofed. Convenient for various embassies, the university
and the Grand Park. Q 20 rooms (singles €58-68, doubles
€78, triples €99). PARLKW
Kruja D-3, Rr. Mine Peza, tel. +355 4 223 81 06, fax
+355 4 223 81 08, reservations@hotelkruja.com, www.
hotelkruja.com. A decent business hotel north of the main
square, with standard rooms overlooking the calm street out
front. There’s also a restaurant and pleasant pavement café
outside. Q 18 rooms (singles €35, doubles €50, apartment
€75). PRLBK
Lugano E-3, Rr. Mihal Duri 34, tel. +355 4 222 20
23/+355 68 203 15 23, luganohotel@yahoo.com. A
small and warm li ttle hotel in the very centre of town. All
rooms have a quality, florid bathroom and a balcony over-
looking the quiet street. Q 8 rooms (singles €40, doubles
€50). PARLK
Sky Hotel G/H-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit N°5/1,
tel. +355 4 241 59 95, fax +355 4 224 06 88, skyho-
tel_tirana@yahoo.com. Opened just as this guide went
to print, this is Tirana’s latest stylish business hotel with
rooms unfortunatel y onl y on the two lowest floors of the
Sky Tower building. TIYP was given a pre-opening tour and
al though the view is not panoramic, the rooms are look-
ers themsel ves, decorated in black and dark purple with
touches of gold. Breakfast is served in the top-floor Sky
Club. Q 33 rooms (2 singles €80, 24 doubles €98-110,
4 triples €118, 3 suites €130-150). PAK
New hotel on the bllok
16
WHERE TO STAY
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
Stela C-5, Rr. Dibrës, tel./fax +355 4 223 55 67. Wi th
i ts whi te tile floors and large bathrooms, Stela seems a
good choice. However, the rooms have thin rugs and small
towels, and the rooms face a noisy street. All rooms are
equipped wi th TV and minibars, as well as tacky arti ficial
fl owers. Q 9 rooms (6 singl es €40, 3 doubl es €60).
PAK
Theranda H-3, Rr. Andon Zako Çajupi 6-7, tel.
+355 4 227 37 66, fax +355 4 227 36 89, reser-
vations@therandahotel.com, www.therandahotel.
com. A charming small hotel of hi gh standards, one of
the few to appl y environmentall y fri endl y techni ques like
solar panel s. The sel f-proclaimed bouti que hotel has
t wo modern buil dings (of whi ch one pavili on-like space
i s used for meal s), bri ght rooms, and experi enced
staff. One street west of the bllok area. Q 14 rooms
(singl es €45-80, doubl es €60-100, 3 sui tes €65-100).
PHRLW
Victoria C-5, Rr. Dibrës 445, tel./fax +355 4 236 15
94, hotel.victoria@interalb.net. The modern Victoria, and
its pizzeria, is run by a famil y who spent several years in Ital y,
and has pleasant if somewhat chintzy rooms. The reception
can be found upstairs beyond the restaurant. Q 10 rooms
(singles €50, doubles €70). PALK
Vila Belvedere F-5, Rr. Murat Toptani 25, tel. +355
4 225 19 35, vilabelvedere@albcomport.com. Perfectl y
l ocated in the centre al ong a recentl y pedestrianised
street, Bel vedere doesn’t offer much of a view, but the
rooms are affordable and comfy. There’s a PC parked in
the hall for guests to use too. Q 8 rooms (singles €30,
doubles €60).
Chateau Linza is set at the foot of Mount
Dajti, ofering beautiful views over Tirana
while still in the freshness of the mountain
breeze. Te hotel has 21 rooms and suites
beside the swimming pool and gardens.
Te 45 fully furnished apartments are
perfect for your stay in Tirana besides
clean air they ofer plenty of privacy and
full service.
Qesarekë-Linzë, Komuna e Dajtit, Tiranë,
Albania Tel. +355 69 20 30 003/9
www.chateaulinzahotel.com
city views
Saranda - Albania, Tel. +355 825 55 92/3/4,
hotelbutrinti@hotmail.com, www.hotelbutrinti.com
Rruga Nacionale Durres-Rrogozhine, KM 12,
Tel. +355 579 22 115/6/7, hosamnasr@malirobitresort.com,
www.malirobitresort.com
For your week end break
Miniri E-4, Rr. Dibrës 3, tel. +355 4 223 09 30, fax
+355 4 223 30 96, hotel_miniri@yahoo.com, www.
miniri.com. The excellent location of this Croatian-owned
hotel, just off the main square, is not matched by i ts inte-
riors. The peach-coloured rooms are decent but nothing
special, wi th a small TV, phone and couch. The Croatian
restaurant on the premises is the redeeming factor. Q
30 rooms (singles €50, doubles €50-80, triples €100).
PHAKW
Nirvana E-3, Rr. Kavajës 96/2, tel. +355 4 223 52
70, fax +355 4 223 52 71, hotelnirvana@hotmail.
com, www.hotel-nirvana.com. Do you think they would
notice i f you booked a room under the name Kurt Cobain?
This large villa set back from the busy road has rooms in
gaudy colours wi th fi tting cosy furni ture - go all the way
and get the one wi th the jacuzzi. Opposi te the Catholic
Church. Q 17 rooms (singles €60, doubles €80, sui tes
€120). PARLK
Nobel E-4, Blv. Zogu I, tel. +355 4 225 64 44/+355 69
202 07 57, reservations@hotelnobeltirana.com, www.
hotelnobeltirana.com. Friendl y staff, cheerfull y coloured
and affordable rooms, and a central location - Nobel ticks all
the boxes. Tucked behind the Tirana International Hotel, the
Nobel has modern furnishings, wireless internet and a decent
Italian restaurant on the ground floor. Q 6 rooms (singles €40,
doubles €50). PAKW
Palma H-3, Rr. Sami Frashëri 2, tel./fax +355 4 226
51 31, info@hotel-palma.com, www.hotel-palma.com.
A small, modern hotel in a central location in the bllok, with
decent rooms and a restaurant. Q 12 rooms (singles €55,
doubles €65, 2 suites €80). PALW
18
WHERE TO STAY
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
Ambasador D-5, Rr. Isa Boletini 36, Selvia, tel. +355 68
229 13 89. Near the market and only a ten-minute walk from
the centre, the Ambasador is a simple, quiet place off the main
road. The rooms are decent enough for the price and have
TVs. Q 12 rooms (singles €25, doubles €30). PH hhh
Areela C-4, Rr. Mahmut Fortuzi, tel. +355 4 222 65 79,
fax +355 4 225 56 13, hotelareela@yahoo.com, www.
areela.150m.com. A very pleasant and well-signposted
place on a residential road near the train station, the Areela
is housed in a building with spotlessl y clean rooms and bath-
rooms. There’s onl y Albanian on TV but that’s compensated
by the erotic art on the walls. Q 12 rooms (singles €30,
doubles €40, triples €60). PJK
Briker D-4/5, Rr. Barrikadave 3/24, tel. +355 4 222 95
43, hotelbriker@hotmail.com. A short stroll from the main
square and a few steps up from the street, the modern Briker
has rooms with wooden floors, red/white furniture and large
blue-glass windows. The room price is the same regardless
of the number of occupants. Q 9 rooms (singles, doubles
€40). PALW
Guva e Qetë F-5, Rr. Murat Toptani, tel. +355 4 223
54 91/+355 68 270 79 01, klidbalkan@albaniaonline.
net. Small, simpl e, cl ean and qui et rooms wi th fridge,
en sui te bathrooms and TVs in a dead-central location.
Amusingl y, when we visi ted, the concierge was too drunk
to even walk to the front desk, so we just grabbed some
room keys to explore the place oursel ves. Q 12 rooms
(doubles €35). P
Haxhiu E-5, Rr. Qemal Stafa 391, tel./fax +355 4 236
05 47. This family-run hotel is tucked away off the main street
and set behind potted trees and flowers. It’s got a light and
airy feeling and views of old tile roofs. The relative lack of
amenities is compensated by the management`s eagerness
to please. Taxis to the centre are provided free. So are coffee
and tea. The breakfast buffet features fresh fruit and pastries.
Q 11 rooms (6 singles and 5 doubles €30). L
Kalaja F-5, Rr. Murat Toptani 9, tel. +355 4 225 00
00. Kalaja amounts to a good budget choice. In this hostel-
like setup, you can ei ther share a room or be sel fish and
take one all for yoursel f. Rooms are quiet and clean, wi th
tile floors, basic bathroom, a TV and a fan. Best of all, the
hotel is ensconced inside the ancient walls of Justinian’s
Fortress. Q 10 rooms (singles €30, doubles €40, triples
€45). HA
Meg Klaus D-3, Rr. Asim Vokshi 141, tel. +355 4 223 92
14, fax +355 4 225 92 36. A decent budget hotel near the
city centre, hidden from the street in a courtyard and far from
any traffic noise. Simple, cheap rooms and a café downstairs.
Q 11 rooms (singles €30, doubles €40).
Parlamenti F-5, Rr. Jeronim de Rada 75, tel. +355 4 226
50 24/+355 68 235 46 55. An excellent, affordable and
central hotel, on a quiet street and next door to the Brilant
hotel. Spacious rooms with attached bathrooms overlook ter-
racotta roofs, and the naughty soft focus photos in the halls
are a nice touch. English-speaking staff members are present
after 10:00. Q 7 rooms (singles €25, doubles €35). PW
Pike Loti G-6, Rr. Mihal Grameno, tel./fax +355 4
223 51 55. Not far from the ci ty centre, this famil y-run
hotel offers small, clean and comfortable rooms. All come
with private bath, modem-compatible telephones, TV and
minibar. Some English is spoken. Q 7 rooms (5 singles €25,
2 doubles €33). PL
Vila 3
Hotel & Restaurant
Excellent service, relaxation and comfort can all be e, relaxation and comfort can all be found at Vila 3. Set e ce
in a safe location in central Tirana, the hotel dates from King Zog's era
(1929-1934) and is near to offices, embassies, consula lates and governmental ula
institutions.
The Vila 3 hotel has five rooms and two suites, nicely decorated in Western suites, nicely decorated in Western n suite
style with a luxurious and modern atmosphere. Rooms have optional odern atmosphere. Rooms have option ona modern
matrimonial beds, air conditioning, minibar, satellite TV, telephone services r conditioning, minibar, satellite TV, telephone serv erv , air condit
and a wireless internet connection. Rooms service from our restaurant is internet connection. Rooms service from our resta estau
available. We acc cept Visa and Mastercard. cc
The Vila 3 restaurant is well known for the delicious traditional Albanian and rant is well known for the delicious tradition ona ur
Italian dishes, and pizzas from our wood burning oven are served in relaxing d pizzas from our wood burning oven are served ved d
and contemporary surroundings with a traditional touch. The bar offers exotic surroundings with a traditional touch. The bar offe ffe y s
cocktails served according to your prefe cording to your preferences. c rding to your ef ccording to your pr
The historical location, excellent and fast service, quality and safe environment vice, quality and safe environm vic m
of Vila 3 will be sure to make your stay in Tirana a pleasant one, and we Tirana a pleasant one, and d Ti
guarantee to provide for every need you may have – your satisfaction is our ave – your satisfaction is o ha
only goal!
We look forward to greeting you in Vila 3.
Address: Rr. Lekë Dukagjini 3, Tiranë anë, Albania ranë :
Tel/fax: +355 04 266 582. : Mobile: +355 69 2065 708 :
Email: vila 3@yahoo com vila_3@yahoo.com vila 3@yahoo com :
Hotel Airport Tirana Rinas, tel. +355 4 830 01
90, hotelairporttirana@live.com, www.hotelair-
porttirana.com. The best (and best-named) of several
options by the airport, this hotel is near the terminal yet
qui te a slog around the perimeter fence, so call for a
free pickup. The fire- and soundproof rooms have bright
colours, and bathrooms are ready for take-off with their
space-age shower cabins. A garden restaurant with pool
at the rear is also available for those simpl y waiting for
flights. Q 50 rooms (22 singles €60, 26 doubles €90, 2
apartments €150). PLKC
Jurgen Rinas, tel. +355 68 200 63 63. A basic,
friendl y hotel just metres from the airport arrivals hall.
Look for the blue-glass building wi th the German flag
on top. No luxury or soundproofing, but at least there
are smiles all round. Q 7 rooms (singles/doubles €40).
Verzaci Rinas, tel./fax +355 56 46 01 18, www.
turisalba.com/verzaci. It’s good that Gianni is no longer
among us, as he’d faint at the sight of this garish pink
building with a big green V on the facade. Inside, the rooms
are plain and basic. Verzaci is a 5-minute walk along the
main road north from the airport. No English is spoken.
Q 20 rooms (singles/doubles €25). PK
Vila Aeroport Rinas, tel. +355 68 207 70 98. The
coolest airport hotel you’ve seen in your life is right here in
Tirana. Modelled after a big sil ver plane and expected to
open sometime in 2010, it’s parked along the road from
the airport to the north. Until it opens, you’’ll have to make
do with the adjacent Dallas-meets-Dracula ranch with a
decent restaurant, a small disco and some large rooms
on the top floor. Q 16 rooms (doubles €50, 4 suites €80).
PHARFLBKDCW
Airport Hotels
Vila Park K-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit, Grand Park,
Kodrat e liqenit, tel. +355 4 225 65 97, fax +355 4 225
68 64, info@vilaparkhotel.com, www.vilaparkhotel.com.
Tirana’s most tranquil hotel is set 100 metres inside the Grand
Park, where the modernistic rooms of Vila Park with their balco-
nies overlook people strolling amongst the trees. There’s a top
class gym and sauna in the adjacent building that guests can use
for a €15 per day. Car access is restricted during daytime. Q 12
rooms (6 doubles €80, 6 suites €100). PARFBKDW
Vila Tafaj D-3, Rr. Mine Peza 86, tel. +355 4 222 75
81/+355 4 223 42 80, fax +355 4 223 59 56, vilatafaj@
yahoo.com, www.tafaj.com. An elegant 1930s building in
the city centre with a green garden at the back to relax in.
Rooms are spacious and modern, and laundry and minibar
is included in the price. The restaurant rustles up Mediter-
ranean food. Q 25 rooms (8 singles €50, 15 doubles €60-90,
2 suites €90-100). PHARLKW
Budget
Why pay more, indeed? Double rooms from €25-50. In win-
ter, it’s important to ask if the heating in cheaper hotels
runs on electricity, and if the hotel has a back-up generator
in case the power goes pow.
Alpin C-5, Rr. Siri Kodra, tel. +355 4 222 10 84/+355
69 406 62 85. Double rooms with small bathrooms (shower
only) and balconies along a busy road. Some English is spoken
at the reception. Q 7 rooms (doubles €30). P
20
WHERE TO STAY
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
21
WHERE TO STAY
January - June 2010 tirana.inyourpocket.com
Savana I-6, Rr. Dervish Hima 38, tel. +355 68 207 70
69, tili_985@hotmail.com. Basic and cheap rooms with
small en suite bathrooms set above a smokey café. Good
value for money if you’re onl y interested in the nearby bars
and restaurants or an earl y morning bus to southern Albania.
Q 5 rooms (singles, doubles €25). PRL
Cheap
The pits - less than €25 for a sagging double.
Dafina C-4, Rr. Papa Kristo Negovani 42, tel. +355 4
223 07 77. On a side street halfway the centre and the train
station, the Dafina has a handful of simple and quiet rooms.
Q 7 rooms (singles €8, doubles €20). P
Republika C-5, Blv. Zog I, 66, tel. +355 4 222 24 00,
fax +355 4 222 50 14, republikahotel@yahoo.it. On
Tirana’s busy boulevard, the Republika has decent rooms,
some with en suite bathrooms, some using clean shared
facilities. Handy for both the centre and the city’s transport
options, but get a room at the back for a quiet night’s sleep.
Q 16 rooms (doubles €20-30, triples €30). P
Vila Verde B-4, Rr. Karl Gega, tel. +355 4 224 82
32/+355 69 230 81 11. Near the train station, just down
the quiet street running parallel to the tracks. Expect low-
standard rooms with en-suite facilities that are bearable if
you need to catch an earl y train or a bus heading north. Q 7
rooms (singles €10, doubles €20). PLBK
Guesthouses & Apartments
Staying at a guesthouse means you may be sharing the
house and some of the the facilities with the locals. It’s a
great way to meet locals and learn more about how they
live. You’ll be surprised at how people of meager means
lavish care and attention on their apartment interiors.
Albaniantrip D-4, Rr. Bardhok Biba 73/1, N °7, tel.
+355 68 40 58 529/+355 69 22 63 333, contact@
albaniantrip.com, www.albaniantrip.com. Modern self-
catering studios and apartments sleeping 3-9 people, in four
locations across the city centre. They can be rented per room
(with private or shared bathrooms) or as a whole, and have
wifi and a full y equipped kitchen with washing machine and
fridge. Q 4 apartments (single use €20, €5 per additional
person). PW
Bujtina Shqiptare D-3, Rr. Sulejman Pasha, tel. +355
4 222 04 33/+355 68 219 69 03, bujtinashqiptare1@
yahoo.com. Good budget accommodation in rooms spread
across three buildings just north of the city centre. The rooms
are basic but comfortable; facilities vary from room to room
but all have private bathroom and TV. Q 8 rooms (singles
€12, doubles €16, triples €25).
Endri H-4, Rr. Vaso Pasha, Pall. 27, Sh. 3, Ap. 30, tel.
+355 4 224 41 68/+355 69 227 25 22. Endri consists
of a large first floor apartment with rooms for rent, run by a
friendl y couple who live in the apartment next door. You have
your own bathroom, either inside the room or just outside the
hall, and cable TV. Limited English is spoken; bring hands and
feet. Q Double rooms €25.
Pension Andrea F-5, Rr. Jeronim de Rada 103, tel.
+355 4 225 69 47/+355 69 209 49 15, pensionandrea@
gmail.com. In a quiet location near the Parliament building,
Pension Andrea’s four basic rooms with TV, a/c and private
bathrooms come wi th a lovel y landlady, Xhina Ballo, who
speaks some English. To find the unmarked pension, turn
down the alley next to the Brilant hotel; it’s the third door on
the right. Q 4 rooms (singles €20, doubles €30). P
Pension Strazimi Rr. Ali Demi, pall. 141, shk. 3, apt.
23, tel. +355 4 237 21 02/+355 69 333 83 41. The
home of Xhetan and Melihat Strazimi has three basic but
clean rooms with shared bathrooms. The Strazimis like to
lock the door by midnight, so it’s no good for party animals,
but a welcoming option for budget travellers. Rr. Ali Demi is
just east of the centre, off Bl v. Bajram Curri, on the Uzina bus
line. Q 3 rooms (singles €5, doubles €10).
Stephen Center B&B E-5/6, Rr. Hoxha Tahsim 1, tel./
fax +355 4 225 39 24, stephencenter@stephencenter.
com, www.stephencenter.com. The ‘Christian environment’
provided in the cosy guestrooms of the Stephen Center is avail-
able to missionaries and other travellers and consists of simple
but well-furnished rooms with twin beds, private bathroom and
adequate heating. There’s laundry, wifi and airport pickup ser-
vice too. Q 6 rooms (singles €30, doubles €40). PGKW
UAW Guesthouse E-2, Rr. Naim Frashëri 6, tel. +355
4 222 30 01, sevim@icc-al.org, www.uaw-al.com. One
for the ladies, this. On the top floor of the ‘Useful to Albanian
Women’ NGO office building, two basic rooms and a kitchen-
ette are available for travellers. Breakfast is available at the
café on the ground floor of the villa. Q 2 rooms (1 single €30,
1 double €60). PW
Vesa Residence I-4, Rr. Abdyl Frashëri, Vesa Center,
tel. +355 4 227 88 16, artel@icc-al.org, www.vesacen-
ter.com. Comfortable two-bedroom apartments sleeping
up to four or five people, and equipped with a full kitchen.
Q PFLKDW
Rruga Jeronim de Rada 103, Tirana
pensionandrea@gmail.com
Tel. +355 4 225 69 47
+355 69 209 49 15
2GPUKQP
#PFTGC
Hostels
The number of hostels in Albania rocketed from just one
to about seven in 2009, anticipating the flood of smelly
backpackers expected to scrounge through the country
in coming years. Note that the Kalaja hotel (see Budget
hotels) has a few rooms that are available as dorms.
Freddy's Hostel E-4, Rr. Bardhok Biba 75, tel. +355
4 226 60 77/+355 68 203 52 61, alfredsalku@yahoo.
com, www.freddyshostel.com. Eminentl y sui tabl e for
flashpackers, Freddy's is just a short walk north of the
main square down a quiet street. I t's more of a guesthouse
than a true hostel, wi th modern two- and three-bedded
rooms (no bunk beds), in several apartments spread over
a brand new building. All rooms have cable TV and a/c,
What do fi ve Ui ghur muslims (from China’s Xinjiang
region), one Egyptian, one Algerian and an Uzbek have in
common? These eight men all were found to be innocent
after years in the Guantanamo Bay camp... and ended
up in Albania. With no country that participated in the
Afghanistan war willing to take these men in at the time,
and the US refusing to send them back to their home
countries, Albania was the onl y country in the world that
agreed to give them asylum. Abu Beker - who works at
the Vllaznia restaurant on Rruga Kavajës - is one of the
better-known new arrivees, his story of imprisonment by
various governments having been reported in newspa-
pers worldwide. Al though he has not seen his wife and
children for a decade, he’s here to stay and hopes to open
his own pizzeria. We’ll be the first to review it.
Guantanamo refugees
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WHERE TO STAY
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
23
RESTAURANTS
January - June 2010 tirana.inyourpocket.com
Albanian cuisine is surprisingly good and tasty, a mix of
Mediterranean and Balkan traditions, with plenty of fresh
fish and produce. Standards are often high, with many
members of the Albanian emigrant diaspora returning
with years of experience in the catering industries around
the world. Dining in Tirana is cheap and even in upscale
restaurants a main course will not cost much more than
800 lek. We've listed the average main course prices in
the reviews. Enjoy.
Upmarket
Even at the fanciest places in Tirana a meal won’t break
the bank.
Apollonia H-5, Blv. Dëshmorët e Kombit, Rogner Euro-
papark Hotel, tel. +355 4 223 50 35. Apollonia’s menu
features not onl y Greek, Albanian and Italian specialities, but
also kangaroo meat. The restaurant has a stylish setting, with
outdoor seating in the lush hotel garden. Occasionall y musi-
cians also saunter around the dining room, serenading guests
with Albanian ballads. QOpen 06:00 - 10:30, 12:00-22:30,
Sun 06:00 - 10:30, 12:00-23:00. (1,500-3,000 lek). AEB
Carlsberg I-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit, Xheko Impe-
rial Hotel, tel. +355 4 224 68 52. The classy first-floor
Carlsberg restaurant in the Xheko Imperial Hotel is deservedly
popular with the foreign crowd. Brick arches surround the
diners, while some of the country’s best cooks and waiters
ensure a quality meal. It’s hard to go wrong with anything here,
but we are especiall y taken with the steaks, the salad bar
and the decadent selection of cheese. In summer, head for
the open-air rooftop restaurant, a dazzlingl y white classicist
pleasure garden complete with fountains, amazing views and
the classy White Camellia conservatory. QOpen 12:00 -
22:30. (300-1500 lek).
Metropolitan J-5, Sheshi Italia, Sheraton Hotel, tel.
+355 4 227 47 07. Set underneath a groovy wave roof,
the Sheraton’s Metropolitan restaurant has excellent Alba-
nian and international fusion dishes on offer at international
prices. The dress code is smart casual. QOpen 12:00 -
23:00. PAB
Piazza E-4, Rr. Ded Gjo Luli 1, tel. +355 4 223 07 06.
Opened by an Albanian-American famil y in 1993, Piazza was
Tirana’s first trul y elegant restaurant. The competition has
made it more accessible and affordable, but Piazza hasn’t
lost i ts cachet. This is still the place for chic parties and
business dinners. The fresh salad bar is excellent. QOpen
12:00 - 16:00, 19:00-23:00. AEB
Vinum E-5, Rr. Qemal Stafa 60, tel. +355 4 223 08
22/+355 68 208 49 00. One of Tirana’s nicest restaurants,
Vinum is tucked away down a small lane; look for the sign on
the main street. The restaurant is in a beautifull y restored
1920s villa with a walled garden, and the chef/owner pro-
duces superb Italian and French influenced dishes. QOpen
13:00 - 24:00. Closed Sun. (600-1200 lek). PAB
Albanian
Bantia H-4, Rr. Vaso Pasha, tel. +355 4 224 46 57.
Excellent traditional Albanian food served in a large restaurant
with nice photos of old Tirana (with English captions no less).
Try the tavë oven dish served with Korça meatballs or the
speciality, petulla te fshjra, or village pie. If you're bringing
hungry friends, consider ordering a lakror, a large flat hearty
pie stuffed with onion, leek, creamy cheese, or vegetables.
Pilsner Urquell is on tap. Q (300-700 lek).
Era H-3, Rr. Ismail Qemali 33, tel. +355 4 225 78 05,
era_delivery@yahoo.com. Meaning 'wind', this popular and
foreigner-friendly spot makes for a good casual lunch or dinner.
The Albanian food is excellent; try the stuffed eggplant and
peppers, and fërgesë (fried minced lamb, feta cheese and
garlic). Era also delivers home. Near the corner with Rr. Sami
Frashëri. QOpen 10:00 - 24:00, Fri 10:00 - 23:00. PJB
Mrizi i Zanave F-5, Rr. Presidenti George W. Bush 1,
tel. +355 4 226 99 31/+355 68 207 44 49. Near the
quaint Ottoman Tanners' Bridge (Ura e tabakëve) by the river
Lana, the Mrizi i Zanave restaurant is named after Gjergj
Fishta's Renaissance-era sonnet book Valley of Goddesses.
Enjoy excellent tradi tional North Albanian cuisine here in
surroundings reminiscent of a High Albania tavern.QOpen
07:00 - 23:00. PE
Oda E-5, Rr. Luigj Gurakuqi, tel. +355 4 224 95 41/+355
69 209 49 11. Eat Ottoman-style in Tirana's onl y true tra-
ditional famil y-run restaurant, sitting on (indeed) ottomans
at low tables in a reconstructed oda (guest room) in an old
house. Surrounded by shel ves with dishes, strings of garlic
and peppers and old photos, it's best to allow the waiters
P Air conditioning B Outside seating
A Credit cards accepted L Guarded parking
E Occasional live music S Take away
G No smoking W Wi-Fi
T Child friendl y V Home delivery
Symbol key
and some also have bal conies. Sheets and towels are
changed dail y too - i t's like you never left your mummy. Q
18 rooms (€12-16 per bed). Simple breakfast included for
the €14+ beds. PW
Tirana Backpacker Hostel 1 H-5/6, Rr. Elbasa-
nit 85, tel. +355 68 216 73 57, tiranabackpacker@
hotmail.com, www.tiranahostel.com. The charming,
yellow 1940s Villa Karajani is home to the first hostel in the
country, wi th a set of basic rooms wi th bunk beds. Guests
can use the garden ki tchen and terrace, washing machine,
internet, free linen and towels - the downside is the traffic
noise. One block east of the Rogner Hotel, at the end of
Rruga Ismail Qemali. A nearby apartment is available for
longer stays. Q 5 rooms (1 double, 4 dorms wi th 5-6 beds
€12/person). R6
Tirana Backpacker Hostel 2 F-2, Rr. Kavajës 175,
tel. +355 68 216 73 57. The people behind TBH1 have
found another charming villa and have turned it into a buzzing
hostel, with ample opportunity for getting drunk with strang-
ers, nightlife safaris and outdoor adventures. The hostel has
23 beds, a nice garden, internet and washing machines. Find
TBH2 in the alley behind Sofra restaurant, opposite the VW
shop. Q 4 rooms (€12 per bed).
Out of town
Tirana's playgrounds are in the green valley southeast
of town along the road to Elbasan, and in the foothills of
Mount Dajti, directly to the east of the city. Many modern
hotels and popular restaurants can be found here, though
keep in mind that you won't get much sleep on weekend
nights - always check that they don't have a wedding or
other party planned during your stay.
Dajti Park Tirana-Dajti road, km 8, tel. +355 4 230 22
33, fax +355 4 230 22 34, info@dajtipark.com, www.
dajtipark.com. A large, modern complex on the flanks of
Mount Daj ti, just 9km east of Tirana and 800 metres above
sea level, the Daj ti Park offers great views of the city and is
a pleasant place to chill out, enjoy the pool or let the kids
romp around. The guest rooms have balconies and are
well-equipped. Free pickup from the airport. Q (singles €40,
doubles €50, triples €60). PHLKCW
Mai Tai Resor t Tirana-Elbasan road, km 5, tel.
(+355) 4 83 03 00/+355 68 205 54 84. Tirana's Mai
Tai Resort has i t all: hotel rooms, bar, restaurant, swim-
ming pools and an exotic name, all far from the noise of
the capi tal yet just a short dri ve to the ci ty centre. Expect
modern rooms and services. Q 14 rooms (doubles €40).
PLBKCW
Panorama Tirana-Dajti road, km 22, tel./fax +355
4 236 31 24, tel. +355 68 202 39 36, panorama@
albaniaonline.net, www.panoramadajt.net. A complex
in Mount Daj ti national park offering wooden chalets amidst
landscaped grounds and a well-to-do restaurant. Shuttle
buses to the complex depart regularl y from the top station
of the cable car, or you can drive up. Good restaurant on site
too. Q 11 rooms (7 doubles € 40, 2 singles €30, 2 chalets
€40). THARILEK
Venue Park Mullet, Tirana-Elbasan road, km 15, tel.
+355 68 328 66 66. In the summer many Tiranans trek
here to swim in the nice pool. The odd green marble effect
in the rooms can be endured in return for the stunning view
of Petrela Castle on the opposite peak. Q 9 rooms (singles
and doubles €20, 1 suite €30). PLBKC
Rr. Presidenti George W. Bush 1
Tel. +355 4 226 99 31
Mrizi i Zanave
North Albanian Restaurant
Stay at Freddy's In the cIty centre
and dIscover TIrana. Comfortable
modern rooms for 2·4 people,
from 612 per person. Cable T7,
wIñ and a/c In all rooms.
75 8ardhok 8Iba Street
TIrana, AlbanIa
Tel. (+J55)(0)68 20J 52 61
alfredsalku@yahoo.com
www.freddyshostel.com
24
RESTAURANTS
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
25
RESTAURANTS
January - June 2010 tirana.inyourpocket.com
to suggest a succession of appetisers and mains. The food
is fresh and delicious, unforgettable even after washing it
all down with their home-made raki. Find Oda down the first
alley west of the market.QOpen 11:00 - 23:00, Sun 13:00
- 23:00. (300-700 lek).
Sarajet F-5, Rr. Abdi Topani 7, tel. +355 4 224 30 38.
Most traditional Ottoman-era houses have disappeared in
Tirana. Sarajet is housed in one of the survivors, the grand
wooden Toptani famil y house, dating from 1780 and looking
good since i ts recent renovation. Ask to see the carved
wooden ceilings on the first floor and the small hamam.
Unfortunatel y the food is nothing special. Strictl y for drinks
and a gander. QOpen 07:00 - 23:00. (600 lek). PTB
Serenata E-3, Rr. Mihal Duri 22, tel. +355 4 273 08 89.
With a nicel y low-key decor of traditional art and costume,
Serenata is the home of dishes from the southern Devolli
region, centred on the town of Korça, which is of course fa-
mous for its serenades and spicy, saucy and full fat food. Try
lakror, a flat pancake stuffed with green beans, tomatoes,
herbs and spices or tave me qofte, spiced meatballs baked
in a clay bowl. Next to Hotel California. QOpen 09:00 - 23:00.
(600 lek). PA
Vila 31 E-2, Rr. Gjon Muzaka 31, tel. +355 4 227 81
41/+355 69 20 83 317. A charming rural-style restaurant
in the big city. This converted house has rustic seating inside,
and in summer tables below the vines in the shady courtyard.
The food is honest peasant fare such as grilled meat and
ribs of lamb, with the tave Vila 31 (an oven-baked pot of
cheese, vegetables and egg for 350 lek) as the standout
choice. From Rruga Kavajës walk down Rruga Naim Frashëri
and look for the sign down the the fourth alley on your right.
QOpen 08:00 - 23:00. (600-700 lek). PAB
Viva H-4, Rr. Pjetër Bogdani, tel. +355 4 224 63 76.
Here's a simple, central, home cooking restaurant that
pl eases all wi th good cooking and friendl y servi ce. For
something local, order the tave dheu (270 lek), an oven
dish wi th meat and cheese, or try the Elbasan version, tava
kosi (280 lek) that's wi th yoghurt. I t's all good. QOpen
08:30 - 23:00.
Asian
Da Shang Hai I-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkur tit,
25/1, tel. +355 4 227 19 87. Good Chinese food
ser ved in wonder full y chint z y surroundings, j ust the
way the Chinese like i t. The Engli sh-language menu,
kindl y translated by the US embassy staff, li sts a good
value set menu deal as well as several fi sh di shes. Find
Da Shang Hai si gnposted down an small all ey. QOpen
12:00 - 23:00.
Far East H-5, Rr. Asim Zeneli 6, tel. +355 4 227 19
38. Par t of a Greek restaurant chain, this pan-Asian res-
taurant has el ements of many Ori ental cul tures refl ected
in both the desi gn and the menu. You're greeted on the
whi te terrace by a Japanese stone lantern overl ooking a
gurgling stream, whil e inside i t's all Chinese woodwork,
moon gates and fish tanks. The menu has ever ything
from sushi (from 600 l ek) to Indonesian satay beef and
a Korean-styl e si zzl er barbecue. QOpen 10:00 - 01:00.
(800-1300 l ek).
Mimi I-5, Rr. Dervish Hima, tel. +355 4 226 99 47. An
unusually named Chinese restaurant. There's friendly service
and a full range of chicken, pork, noodle and beef standards.
The seafood specialities include calamari and shrimps. Home
delivery, too. QOpen 08:00 - 22:00. PB
London D-4, Blv. Zogu I, N°51, tel. +355 4 223 88 51.
Wandering Brits should feel right at home here in this small
Albanian corner of Blighty, where British and Italian food is
served. A favouri te for expats and visi tors alike. QOpen
12:00 - 23:00. AE
Lulishte 1 Maji F-5/6, Rr. Presidenti George W.
Bush, tel. +355 4 225 45 71. A large, tree-shaded garden
beside the river, shared by four restaurants, fountains and
a playground. There's pasta and pizza at low prices and a
large red building housing the culinary equivalent of the UN,
wi th kebabs, Mexican and Chinese food. QOpen 11:30 -
23:00. EB
Royal G/H-4, Blv. Dëshmorët e Kombit, Twin Towers,
tel. +355 4 228 03 28, restaurantroyal@hotmail.com.
Located on the fourth floor of the Twin Towers, this restaurant
combines fine dining with a nice view of the main boulevard
and the ci ty skyline. Come on a warm night and dine al
fresco in the glow of the pyramid. A good selection of wines
is available to accompany a large variety of mains. QOpen
08:00 - 22:30. (600-1200 lek). PA
Shang Hai F-5, Rr. Murat Toptani, tel. +355 4 225 70
12/+355 68 218 70 81. Good and affordable Chinese
food is offered at Tirana’s second Shang Hai restaurant,
found beyond a set of carved wooden pillars in a courtyard
opposite the Millennium 2 cinema. The menu has a dazzling
126 options (plus a set of Albanian choices to lure insecure
locals inside), all available in the dining hall, on the terrace or
for take-away. The set menus with 5-8 dishes are good value.
QOpen 11:00 - 23:00. B
Fast food & Snacks
Concentrations of grease can be found around the
intersection of Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit and Rr. Abdyl
Frashëri. See also the café reviews for healthier snacks.
Big Bite I-4, Rr. Abdyl Frashëri 16, tel. +355 4 222 00
00. Tirana's other popular fast-food chain. Non-stop burgers,
chips and pizza. Q Open 24hrs. S
Il Pomodoro Food Court H-5, Sheshi Italia, Sheraton
Plaza Mall. A food court inside the mall attached to the
Sheraton hotel, with three cuisines on offer: Mexican, Italian
and Asian. Popular for office lunches and for a quick dinner.
QOpen 08:00 - 24:00.
Kolonat I-5, Sheshi Italia, tel. +355 4 225 51 27.
Albania's first US-style fastfood chain comes complete with
plagiarised McD logo and boxes. Those bored with Ronald's
concoctions may like the huge four-person superpizzas,
Skanderburgers (named after the national hero) and 'Big
Supreme' menus (420 lek) on the menu here. The main outlet
is a large tent wedged behind the colonade at the southern
end of the boulevard. QOpen 08:00 - 24:00. Also at (G-6)
Bl v. Bajram Curri.
Mr. Chicken I-4, Rr. Abdyl Frashëri, tel. +355 4 225
77 08. It's hot and it's busy, but the delicious freshl y cooked
rotisserie chicken is worth waiting for. You can also get decent
chips and kebabs here. Sit in the cheap and cheerful dining
section or take it away to smear grease all over your face
elsewhere. QOpen 09:00 - 24:00. (150 lek). BS
French
Patisserie Française G/H-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4
Shkurtit, 1. A French-owned culinary amalgamation with a
patisserie at the front flogging bread and cakes, and behind
it a faux Parisian café with mirrors and oozing red colours ev-
erywhere. Light lunch or supper accompanied by red wine here
is highl y recommended. TIYP readers recommend the Paris
Brest cake. QOpen 08:30 - 22:00. (900-1500 lek). PGS
International
Billionaire G-5, Rr. Jul Varibova 13, tel. +355 4 227
37 16. Situated on one of the few streets in central Tirana
still lined wi th old-fashioned villas, Billionaire adds to the
atmosphere by providing a restful terrace and garden where
you can smell the flowers as you sip your drink or dine on
mainl y Italian food. QOpen 11:00 - 23:30. (500-700 lek).
PTAB
King House I-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit, tel. +355
4 225 55 59. There's nothing outstanding about the King
House; just reliabl y good Albanian and Italian food served in
pleasant surroundings by friendl y and attentive staff. Home
of the informal Friday night Tirana expat meeting. Near the
Xheko Imperial hotel. QOpen 07:00 - 24:00. (550-1280
lek). PAS
Waiter! Kamarier!
A table for two Një tavvolin për dy
Non-smoking / smoking Ndalohet duhani
/ Lejohet duhani
The menu please Menune ju lutem
I’d like to order Do doja ta bëja porosin
Do you have vegetarian food? Kni ushqim vegjetarian
Surprise me! Më befaso
The bill, please Faturën ju lutem
Restaurant talk
Meat & Fish Mish & Peshk
beef mish lope
chicken pulë
lamb qengji
pork derri
sausage suxhuk
veal mish viçi
schnitzel shnitcell
fish mish peshku
salmon salmon
sea food fruta deti
trout troftë
Fruits and vegetables Frutat dhe perimet
apple mollë
banana banane
cabbag lakër
carrot karrotë
eggplant patëllxhan
mushrooms këpurdha
orange portokall
peppers speca
tomatoes domate
Drinks Pijet
beer birrë
juice lëng
wine verë
water ujë
Menu decoder
26
RESTAURANTS
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
27
RESTAURANTS
January - June 2010 tirana.inyourpocket.com
Lebanese
1001 Netë H-5, Rr. Mustafa Matohiti, tel. +355 4 225 88
60. Named after the 1001 nights during which Scheherazade
told unfinished tales to the Persian king to save herself from
execution at dawn, Tirana's first Levant-themed restaurant has
silver curtains creating an intimate atmosphere around the low
tables and Lebanese specialities such as tabuleh salad on the
menu. Albanian and Italian dishes are available too. Opposite the
Iranian embassy. QOpen 07:30 - 24:00. (800-1,200 lek). BK
Seafood
Il Cappricio di Zio Edi G-4, Blv. Bajram Curri, Pallatet
Agimi, tel. +355 4 223 33 21/+355 69 272 35 10.
Beyond the unassuming facade, this basement restaurant
specialising in Italian fish dishes is well worth a visit. Edi spent
15 years learning the trade in Ital y before starting his own
venture here, and his kitchen dishes out fantastic appetisers
and tasty variations on fresh sea fish, squid, and shrimps.
Find i t near the corner wi th Rruga Vaso Pasha. QOpen
11:30 - 24:00. P
Kalaja e Petreles (Petrela Castle) Petrele, tel.
+355 4 69 208 81 38. A fantastic setting for a very
good restaurant. The Petrele castle restaurant has tables
both outside and in the little tower, all with great views of
the surrounding valleys and hills. The food is traditional
Albanian, served with a smile. Half an hour’s drive east of
Tirana along the road to Elbasan. QOpen 11:30 - 23:30.
(700-1,500 lek). B
Castle dining
meals, accompanied by a good selection of wines. The
outside seating area has a tropical feel to i t, while inside
i t's all minimalist chique wi th delicate spotlighting. QOpen
08:00 - 02:00. PLBW
La Cantinella H-4, Rr. Brigada VIII, tel. +355 69 207
00 82. Set back from the street, the courtyard of this
elegant I talian grill house is a pleasant and quiet place to
try a grilled meat or Albanian speciali ty. Inside, there are
tables wi th red-cushioned seats, a pot stove, and wines
displayed along the walls. QOpen 12:00 - 24:00. (400-800
lek). PAEB
La Tavernetta H-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit.
Lurking in a cellar bel ow a modern hi gh-ri se li es thi s
rusti c Albanian tavern wi th wooden beams, medalli ons,
large spoons and lutes. The reasonabl e I talian food
here is compl emented by an excell ent salad bar. QOpen
12:00 - 23:00. P
Mamma Rosa H-3, Rr. Sami Frashëri 20/1, tel. +35
69 317 70 84. Over the past year or two, this restaurant
has changed name and cuisine so often that we're al ways
writing new reviews for it. First a Turkish place called Efendy,
then Anais with international food, it has now morphed into
an I talian eatery wi th standard pastas and steak. What
remains, thankfull y, is the bathroom with a real bath where
you can take refuge from this fast-changing ci ty. QOpen
11:00 - 24:00. (500-900 lek).
Napoli D-2, Rr. Durrësit 79, tel. +355 4 223 15 67,
www.restaurantnapoli.com. One of the first pri vate
restaurants to open in 1991 and strategi call y placed
near the clutch of embassi es al ong Rr. Skenderbeg, Na-
poli is a good spot for dipl omats and other passers-by.
I ts scrumpti ous pi zzas and seafood are conjured up by
a chef who trained in I tal y. QOpen 08:00 - 24:00. (350-
650 l ek). PAB
Pirro Mani Rr. Ali Demi 131, tel. +355 4 234 75
67/+355 69 202 98 63. Famed locall y for the Italian food
on offer, Pirro Mani is named after the celebrity owner and has
no arsonist links whatsoever. There's a large seating area in
the garden, while the rustic interior is also capable of hold-
ing a wedding party or two. On weekends, call in advance to
check it's not booked full. Just east of the city centre. QOpen
12:00 - 24:00. (750-1300 lek). P
Vila Logoreci I/J-3, Rr. Gjon Pali II, tel. +355 4 224
71 90. A superb-looking restaurant in an old villa, wi th
cosy indoor rooms and a terrace wi th a pond. The I talian
food here is a cut above the rest and certainl y is worth
trying. However, when we visi ted i t was so busy that the
wai ters were stressed and unfriendl y so perhaps i t's best
to come earl y or avoid the Vila on busy nights. QOpen
07:00 - 23:30. PAB
Japanese
Yamato I-4, Rr. Abdyl Frashëri, QTU City mall, tel. +355
4 225 82 38. Albania's first Japanese restaurant is so well-
hidden, unmarked above the Euromax supermarket in the
QTU City mall, that several locals have written to us to say it
does not exist. But it does, and serves pretty decent sushi,
sashimi, tempura and teriyaki dishes - though the exact menu
depends on which fish were netted that morning. Unfortu-
natel y, our experience was marred when we were left waiting
while the waiters checked Facebook and played games on the
restaurant PC, instead of attending to customers. QOpen
12:00 - 24:00, Sun 18:00 - 23:00. (600-1,800 lek).
Italian
Casa di Pasta G-4, Blv. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit, Rinia
Park, tel. +355 4 225 11 75/+355 4 225 11 78. A large
I talian eatery occupying hal f of the Tai wan complex, and
looking like any neo-rustic restaurant. The open kitchen of-
fers full views of cooks whacking lambchops into submission,
spinning pizza dough or preparing the "capricious fish salad",
and although their efforts result in fine dishes, the service can
be numbingl y slow. The huge fruit salad is recommended on
hot days. QOpen 08:00 - 22:00.
Green House G-5, Rr. Jul Varibova 6, tel. +355 4
222 26 32, info@greenhouse.al, www.greenhouse.
al. A 1930s villa wi th a quiet courtyard hidden behind high
hedges seems the perfect place to have Medi terranean
Serendipity I-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit, 26/1, tel.
+355 4 225 93 77. A favourite among foreigners, Serendip-
ity offers an irresistible combination of attractive clientele,
innovative cocktails and fusion food (curry, chicken jambalaya,
etc). There's often live music on Friday and Saturday, with
partying until the earl y hours. QOpen 07:00 - 24:00. (700
lek). PEB
Steakhouse G-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit, Rinia
Park, Taiwan, tel. +355 68 230 88 08. The newest
addi tion to the Tai wan entertainment complex, this sleek
first-floor steak restaurant is decked out wi th light wood
and has a pleasant terrace overlooking the park. The menu
has items such as the Mosaic mixed grill and sirloin Angus
steak, but also has a range of other non-steak meals. There's
knowledgeable service and wifi too. QOpen 12:00 - 02:00.
(800 lek). PABW
Vila Ferdinand I-4, Rr. Nikolla Tupe, tel. +355 4 225
04 46. A charmingl y converted villa with seating indoors and
on the terrace and balconies. The menu is fairl y standard,
with Albanian and Italian food, and T-bone steaks. QOpen
07:00 - 23:00. (400-800 lek). PB
Vila Metropolitan H-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit.
Right beside the dictator's old villa, this nicel y converted
villa is the largest ci ty-centre venue wi th a café on the
ground floor and the terrace around, and a stylish restaurant
upstairs. There's tradi tional and modern art on the walls,
and a varied menu; for vegetarian viagra try the 'aphrodi-
siac salad'. Who'll convince the UN and NGOs hogging the
other lovel y villas on this street to make way for progress?
QOpen 19:00 - 24:00.
Villa Amsterdam H-5, Rr. Asim Zeneli 9, tel. +355 4
226 74 39. Logicall y located right opposite the Netherlands
embassy building, this pleasant restaurant has great semi-
covered terrace seating where you can plot the downfall of
the Dutch government. Or perhaps just tuck into Albanian
food and pizzas. QOpen 07:00 - 02:00. PB
Ballkoni Dajtit Mount Dajti, upper cable car
station, tel. +355 68 401 10 21. A l ovel y Alpine-
styl e wooden cabin restaurant wi th excell ent vi ews
over Ti rana and t he wi de surroundi ngs. There
are several rooms, though i t’s wor th asking for a
tabl e in the encl osed bal cony room. The restaurant
ser ves vari ous Al bani an and I tal i an meal s, wi th
pri ces refl ecting the effor ts needed to haul i t all up
the mountain. The ser vi ce and mono-lingual staff
requires some training, but i t’s well wor th vi si ting.
QOpen 12:00 - 20:00.
Sky Club G/H-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkur tit
N°5, tel. +355 4 222 16 66, ext 143, skyclub@
albaniaonline.net. Tirana’s most novel restaurant is
perched on top of the 17-storey Sky Tower. A glass
el evator stuck on the side of the building takes you up
to the terrace from where there are tabl es and great
vi ews in all directi ons. The pri ces of the internati onal
dishes ser ved here are as hi gh as the l ocati on, but
the vi ews make up for that. One fl oor up, the café
secti on has a revol ving fl oor (see Cafés). QOpen
08:00 - 23:00. (700-1200 l ek). Admissi on 250 l ek/
person for groups. PB
Food with a view
Let go of those old-fashioned certainties, and visit a
restaurant that doesn’t do menus.
Amor F-1, Rr. Muhamet Gjollesha, tel. +355 4 224
15 73/+355 69 268 49 52. No menu here, just what
the chef/owner decides to make that day, all cooked
fresh. Great home made pasta, excellent meat, superb
desserts and all at reasonable prices. Don’t miss the
chocolate mousse. It’s onl y a little place so booking is
advisable for dinner. QOpen 12:00 - 17:00, 19:00-23:00.
Closed Sun. (950 lek). P
Otium H-3, Rr. Brigada e VIII, tel. +355 4 222 35 70.
One of our favourite new places, Otium is a deliciousl y
unpretentious place for a great meal. Clamber up the
steps to the first floor dining room and be wowed by fast
and knowledgeable staff - who’ll tell you there’s no menu
but will make several suggestions. The pasta dish that
TIYP had was excellent - though be aware the salads feed
two. QOpen 11:00 - 23:00. P
No menu
Il Capriccio
Enjoy fresh fsh from the depths
of the Adriatic Sea
Open daily 11am to midnight.
Blvd. Bajram Curri, Pallatet Agimi
Tirane, Albania
Tel: 04 223332, Mob: 0692723510
Street views from the Noi café
28
RESTAURANTS
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
Rozafa E-5, Rr. Luigj Gurakuqi 2, tel. +355 4 224 86
70/+355 4 223 91 14, www.rozafa.com.al. With fish and
other seafood coming fresh from their own fish market across
the street, you can choose between superb cheap seafood or
superb expensive seafood at the two Rozafa restaurants, both
located in one building. Treat yourself at least once to the upmar-
ket version (down the alley and through the wooden door on the
left); try the seafood buffet, piled high with more tentacles and
suckers that you can count. QOpen 12:00 - 24:00. PAB
Vila 12 G/H-5, Rr. Mustafa Matohiti 12, tel. +355 4 225
06 33. A gourmet fish restaurant that has some very fishy
combinations indeed, served in an earth-coloured space with
framed bricks. The Italian-trained chef likes to experiment with
weird combinations here, such as the raw fish with radish,
grapes or strawberries as a starter, and potato-cake with cod
and mozzarella as a main course. Ask for the six fish dish starter
(900 lek) to sample various such creations, or ask for traditional
grilled fish or lobster. The hot choc fondant cake is a worthy
dessert. QOpen 11:00 - 23:00. (700-900 lek). PAB
Swiss
Swiss Chalet H-4, Rr. Ismail Qemali 11, tel. +355 69
205 92 52, szekja@yahoo.it. Rather than being perched
at lofty Alpine al titudes, this Swiss-themed restaurant can
be found in a series of small rooms in a basement beside
the Grand hotel. Decorated with old photos of quaint Helvetic
towns, it's a great place to sample various styles of mol ten
cheese such as raclette (dripped) and fondue (dipped, 2,200
lek for two). There's also fondue Bourguignonne, where you
cook skewered bits of meat in a pot of boiling oil - smell y but
good fun. QOpen 12:00 - 16:00, 19:00-23:00. PGB
Turkish
Sofra F-2, Rr. Kavajës 170, tel. +355 4 222 68 18.
Although Albanian food is heavily influenced by the Turks, this
restaurant serving original kuzhina turke is worth the short
walk west from the centre. Try the Turkish pizza lahmaxhun,
one of the many kebab dishes, or sink your teeth into sweet
sticky baklava pastries. Prices are very reasonable for the
feast you'll get, and the place is nicel y decorated with kilim
carpets, instruments, nargil pipes and other nicknacks. It's
as if the Ottomans never left. QOpen 08:00 - 22:00. P
Lining Tirana’s Grand Park are several large restau-
rants where you can relax in the cool fresh air and say
hello to a bear.
Juvenilja Castelo J-6, Rr. Gjeneral Niko Pushkini,
tel. +355 4 226 66 66. These fine purveyors of Ital-
ian and Albanian specialities, a mul ti-talented salad bar
and gigantic pizza inhabit a customised castle on the
edge of the park. Excellent dining in large rooms, all-
encompassing balconies or tiered-terraces overlooking
the greenery. QOpen 10:00 - 24:00. PALBSW
Nëna Mbretereshë Rr. Labinoti. The “Queen
Mother” restaurant is a quaint wooden lodge-type building
set on a hill overlooking the trees of Grand Park, near the
Martyrs’ Cemetery. The terrace is great for a coffee or
one of the grill or meat dishes on the menu, but foreign-
ers sitting inside will have a hard time understanding why
a restaurant in such a fine location keeps the curtains
tightl y closed. QOpen 07:00 - 23:00. PB
Sofra e Ariut (Bear’s Lair) Rr. Elbasanit, tel. +355
4 237 29 04, www.sofraeariut.com. Resembling a
Swiss chalet, the elegant interiors are great for long
Albanian lunches or dinners. The cages containing Liza
the bear, some monkeys, eagles and chickens around
the lush terrace of this popular restaurant may cause
you to raise your eyebrows, but they’re housed in better
conditions than animals in the local zoo. Near the Martyrs’
Cemetery. QOpen 07:00 - 24:00. ALB
Park restaurants
Magic Blue H-4, Rr. Vaso Pasha, tel. +355 4 227
35 55. A modern seafood restaurant in the blloku fi tted
out rusti c-styl e. The catch of the day can be inspected
fresh on a bed of i ce beside the entrance and you can
simpl y choose the fish of your liking, or you could order
one of the many seafood opti ons on the menu, whi ch
includes octopus, calamari, shrimps, salmon and more.
There's li ve piano musi c ever y Wednesday, Friday and
Saturday evening. QOpen 12:00 - 24:00. (550-3400
l ek). PLEB
Post-socialist slogans at the entrance into town
30
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
31
NIGHTLIFE
January - June 2010 tirana.inyourpocket.com
All cafes and bars offer espresso (kafe ekspres) or
Turkish coffee (kafe turke). More upscale places will
also serve American-style coffee (kafe filter). The only
Starbucks-type place in town so far is Gregory’s.
Artist Lounge H-5, Rr. Ismail Qemali 12, tel. +355
68 348 54 90, justfruits@hotmail.com. A unique, bright
and spacious café serving fresh fruit juices and smoothies,
coffee, sweet and hearty crepes, sandwiches, pasta, salads
and baguettes. Recommended for a heal thy snack or lunch,
though service can be tediousl y slow when it’s busy. QOpen
07:00 - 24:00, Sat, Sun 07:30 - 24:00. PGB
Bardhe e Zi H-3, Rr. Sami Frashëri, tel. +355 4 224 70
89. The biggest attraction in ‘Black and White’ is the huge
black-and-white photograph collection of Albanian artist Artur
Gorishti. Modem and comfortable, this café serves a damn
good cappuccino. Near the corner wi th Rr. Ismail Qemali.
QOpen 07:30 - 24:00. PBW
Delikatesë H-5, Rr. Ismail Qemali 12, tel. +355 4 224
54 24. Delicious home-made cakes and sweet chocolatey
things served in a restaurant that also has various Italian
dishes on he menu. Perfect for an indulgent lunch.QOpen
07:00 - 23:00. PB
Gregory’s Coffee H-4, Blv. Dëshmorët e Kombit, Twin
Towers. A modern coffee and sandwich bar on the ground
floor of the Twin Towers. Panini fillings include omelet, chicken
and Albanian-style meatballs and cheese. Eat/drink in, or take
away. Also on the Durrës highway in the Praktiker DIY store.
Juna I-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. Sited in one of the
busiest areas of town by the university bookstore, Juna is
busy all day long. Could be the location, or the good fresh
coffee they serve. QOpen 08:00 - 23:30. B
Mojo H-5/6, Rr. Themistokli Gërmenji. Big blurry photos
and big lamps set the scene for Mojo’s hip crowd. A bright café
serving drinks and snacks such as sandwiches and toast,
Mojo is officiall y a no-smoking café even though everyone
happil y ignores that. From 17:00-20:00 on weekdays, free
snacks come with the drinks. QOpen 07:30 - 02:00. GW
Noi Café Rr. Abdyl Frashëri 5, Vesa Center, tel. +355
4 224 73 53. Overlooking the street from the third floor of
the Vesa complex, Noi is a pleasant and modern ‘gourmet
café’ with an amazing range of wood-roasted single-origin and
blended coffee on the menu. For something reall y special try
CAFÉS
when the place fills up on Wednesday and Saturday for live
performances by local bands. Near the Sky Tower. QOpen
07:00 - 03:00. PEBW
Kuki G-3, Blv. Gjergj Fishta, Pall. Italiane 4. Get a shot
of cul ture in this well-hidden artist's café. The grey walls are
hung with Albanian modern art, while minimal and modern
music is played on the stereo. On Friday evenings the café
hosts video sessions of live concerts and documentaries,
followed by DJ music. Beside the car park, right behind the
Friends Book House. QOpen 08:00 - 24:00, Sun 17:00 -
24:00. Beer 200 lek. PBW
Living Room F-5, Rr. Presidenti George W. Bush 16, tel.
+355 4 226 51 30/+355 67 203 32 25. Literally a cool
bar, as after a hot summer's day the large rooftop lounge area
catches the evening breeze. That's when the pretty people
dress up and come out in force to cram themselves on the
multilevel decks overlooking the city. In winter, retreat to the first
floor of the building with its living room style bar. The restaurant
(summer only) serves good pasta and fish dishes, though it's
the cocktails and daily DJ parties that interest the majority of
visitors. QOpen 19:00 - 03:00. Beer 400 lek. PAEBK
Meduza H-5, Rr. Mustafa Mahotiti, tel. +355 4 222 35
98. A large bar in the wacky pallati me birila building. English
and Australian beers are on tap, there's a good-value lunch
menu and in the evening a selection of Italian, Lebanese and
international dishes is served, followed by cocktails. There's live
music on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday with Salsa dancing,
DJs and bands. QOpen 06:00 - 01:00. Beer 400 lek. PEB
MonarC Bar F-5, , tel. +355 4 227 45 11, www.monarc.
al. The bar on the top floor of the hotel is worth mentioning
for the dazzling views across town from i ts wrap-around
terrace, and the waterfall that cools drinkers in summer.
QOpen 08:00 - 24:00.
Order a bottle of mineral water with your meal, and chanc-
es are that you’ll get sparkling water that was shipped
all the way from France, Italy or further away – usually
at a high price for both the environment and the diner’s
wallet. All this while Albania has excellent and abundant
mineral water, and several good brands such as Glina and
Tepelena are on the market. Join TIYP in asking restaurant
managers to have at least one local brand on the menu
so patrons have the choice. The Albanian economy needs
all the support it can get, and this will help in a small way.
Drink ujë, not aqua
Where is the nearest bar / club? Ku ndodhet klubi më I afërt?
I need a... Dua një …..
... beer birrë
... wine verë
... cocktail koktell
... cigarette cigare
... lighter çakmak
... ashtray tabak
... man burr
... woman grua
Where can I find a taxi? Ku mund ta gjejë një taksi?
You have beautiful eyes. Keni sy të bukur.
Your place or mine? Vendi im apo I yti?
Where I come from, that’s illegal. Prej nga unë vij, kjo është jo legale.
Pub talk
"This is one east European capital the stags might want
to miss" wrote travel journalist Simon Calder in the UK's
Independent paper. Though we don't want to encourage
the bachelor party scene to spread to Albania, Simon
clearly reads the wrong guidebooks as Tirana's nightli fe
scene is not bad at all, and is certainly improving fast.
The fun starts with the lively xhiro (mass evening stroll),
and ends at the bllok's bustling cafes, bars and clubs.
There's a fine line between cafés, bars and clubs (and
indeed workplaces) in Albania, and some venues that
we have listed as cafés or bars are known to morph into
clubs on weekend nights. You'll know when the sound
gets cranked up and long-legged promo or gogo girls
climb onto your table.
Bars
Buda Bar H-4, Rr. Ismail Qemali, tel. +355 69 202 70
42. Al though there are enough Buddha Bars in the world to
start a religion, this is certainl y a nice addition to Tirana's
nightlife scene; a diml y lit lounge with ottomans and couches
to flop around on. There's good ventilation, Indian wooden
screens, chilled-out music, and attentive staff. QOpen 09:00
- 01:00, Fri, Sat 09:00 - 03:00. PAEB
Bulevard Café G/H-4, Blv. Dëshmorët e Kombit, Twin
Towers, tel. +355 4 228 03 34. Inspired by Tirana and
the letter B (note the shape of the café), the Bulevard is a
great night option serving drinks to a thirtyish crowd on the
third floor of the twin towers. Sit at the bar under a ceiling
with photos of Old Tirana, or hang out in the curious booths
lining the walls. Try to visit when Roberto, a talented Italian
artist, croons his evergreens on weekend nights, followed
by DJs. QOpen 07:30 - 02:00, Sun 18:00 - 02:00. Beer
300 lek. PW
Charl’s Bistro H-4, Rr. Pjeter Bogdani 36, tel. +355
69 202 29 01, www.charlsbistro.com. An ecl ecti c,
fashionable thirtyish crowd populates this fantastic lounge
bar wi th 1960s-80s inspired music in the bllok area. The
somewhat oddl y spel t Charl’s regularl y puts on li ve music
acts from across the regi on and vari ous other events
from Thursday to Saturday, but the cocktail bar in the
lush small garden spi ts out great drinks all week. QOpen
24 hrs. PEBW
Converse G/H-4, Rr. Vaso Pasha. The students, artists
and intellectuals that visit this tiny basement 'social club' to
sip coffee and play chess seem the exact opposites of the
loud hairy men slamming down shots at Steelwings next door.
A good place to pick up conversation with young Tiranians,
recite poetry or pin your own home-made art on the walls.
QOpen 09:00 - 03:00. Beer 100 lek. P
Flares H-4, Rr. Brigada VIII, tel. +355 69
209 99 10, nardimuho@yahoo.com. Squeeze
yourself into this bar at the weekend and be pre-
pared for a singalong or even a star turn. When
the karaoke is turned off, just relax and enjoy
the modern Albanian art on display. QOpen
07:00 - 01:00, Thu, Fri, Sat 07:00 - 03:00. Beer
300 lek. PABW
Flex H-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit, 56,
tel. +355 68 222 07 00. A pleasant enough
bar, but if you go right to the back, following the
corridor on your right, you're in a different place.
This part is bathed in a relaxing creamy yellow
glow from the overhead canopy - you're out in
the open here. This helps keep the air moving
holding down a 1,500 lek cup of Kopi Luwak, Indonesian cof-
fee made from beans that have passed through the bowels of
a civet (an animal that looks like a weasel), acquiring a ‘strong
complex flavour’ along the way. In the evening, a buffet of free
snacks is offered with the drinks. Bring the kids, there’s a
Playstation corner. QOpen 07:00 - 24:00. PT
Pastiçeri International I-4, Rr. Abdyl Frashëri, tel.
+355 4 225 67 50. The onl y thing international about this
place might be your presence - but it’s still one of the bet-
ter places to go to get your sugar-and-coffee fix. Wolf down
tarts and various other pastries - if you can find a seat, that
is. The children will love the small playground in the adjacent
park. QOpen 07:00 - 23:00. Also on Rr. Durrësit, and Rr.
Sami Frashëri. PB
Quo Vadis H-4, Rr. Ismail Qemali 27, tel. +355 4 226 65
90. A popular café at the bllok’s main crossroads. The deep
red walls provide the perfect backdrop for the hip, young and
rich to do their thang. We recommend ordering a coffee, a pint
of hair gel and a clipped goatee. QOpen 08:00 - 23:00. B
Sky Club Café G/H-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit N°5,
tel. +355 4 222 16 66. The floor of the glass box on top of
Albania’s highest building revolves slowly to give a 360-degree
panorama of the city, electricity permitting. That’s also the
main reason to come - the coffee and cakes on offer are pricey
and no better than those at ground level. QOpen 08:00 -
23:00. Groups: admission 250 lek/person. P
Stephen Center Café E-5/6, Rr. Hoxha Tahsim 1, tel.
+355 4 223 47 48, www.stephencenter.com. Set up by
evangelical missionaries who certainl y know how to run a
good café, this is one of Tirana’s best, a cosmopolitan meet-
ing place for locals and foreigners alike. There’s a pleasant
terrace and a cosy smoke-free interior with a poster of New
York’s twin towers. There’s free wifi, fresh juice, 90 lek bottom-
less coffee, salads, pastas, sandwiches, pancakes, burgers,
pizza, Mexican dishes, English breakfast and on Saturdays
waffles. Amen! QOpen 07:00 - 23:00. Closed Sun. (600-750
lek). PTAGBW
Epër7shme G-5, Rr. Jul Variboba 2, tel. +355 4
227 12 88. A lovel y book café, unfortunatel y with very
few English-language ti tles in the shop section. Find
the friendl y owners and their friends hanging out at the
café section at the back, specialising in tea. The name
means ‘suitable’ - and it’s more than that. QOpen 08:00
- 22:30. PBW
Friend’s Book House G-3, Rr. Sami Frashëri, tel.
+355 4 226 67 77, friendbookhouse@yahoo.com.
For literary insomniacs: a non-stop bookshop, café and
reading room that also has a quiet study room in the
basement. There are not many English-language titles on
offer but you can al ways bring your own book or newspa-
per along. Near the main police station, just north of the
river. Q Open 24hrs. PJBW
Book cafés
Drinks at the Steel wings biker bar
32
NIGHTLIFE
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
Noel F-5, Rr. Murat Toptani, tel. +355 4 224 36 38. A
film lover's den of delights, Noel is appropriatel y owned by
the director of the local film institute, and is set in a base-
ment opposite the Millennium 2 cinema. A mature crowd of
cul ture vul tures can be found sitting eating and drinking at
tables amidst hundreds of magazine photos of movie icons
and scenes. Food on offer includes traditional tava and qofte
meatballs. QOpen 10:00 - 17:00, 19:00-24:00. Closed Sun.
Papafingo H-3, Rr. Gjin Bue Shpata, tel. +355 67 210
43 57. This student bar runs on love and dedication rather
than on permits, but it's a fun place to share dirt-cheap drinks
(Birra Korça 150 lek) with the studying masses. Papafingo is
Albanian for attic, and it's indeed found hidden, unmarked, on
the top floor of a nondescript building; enter at the 'Midnight
Passion' sign opposite the Raiffeisen bank and head up the
dangerousl y narrow staircase at your own risk.
Radio H-4, Rr. Ismail Qemali 29/1, tel. +355 69 28 44 24.
One of Tirana's cooler bars, covered in old radio station logos,
a Guernica painting, a typewriter on a stool and a few antique
radios scattered around. Filled with students and others on
most nights, it's a relaxed place to listen to chilled music and
chat. Find it in an apartment building set back from the street.
Rock 'n Roll I-6, Rr. Dervish Hima. A small bar with classic
green and red wallpaper and a great atmosphere, very popular
with locals and foreigners alike. Mercifull y, no house music is
played here, just honest blues, country and the odd rock 'n
roll song, with DJs sometimes dropping by to spin their discs.
The usual drinks are served, with a good selection of whiskeys
to fuel the night. QOpen 08:00 - 02:00. B
Rockwood H-5, Rr. Papa Gjon Pali II, N°11/1, tel. +355
68 401 78 15. A small and friendl y bar on the ground floor of
a tall office building (also conveniently housing the IYP offices),
serving endless coffees by day and playing rock and other
music styles at night. QOpen 07:00 - 02:00.
Steelwings (Harley Davidson Bar) G/H-4, Rr. Vaso
Pasha, tel. +355 69 202 23 31, www.steelwings-albmc.
com. Official home of the Steelwings Albania Motorcycle Club
and easily located by the multitude of cool rides parked outside,
this rocking bar full of leather-clad motorbike enthusiasts is deco-
rated with all the usual Americana. It's a very friendly place, and
the owners Tani and Dani stress that everyone is welcome. Visit
on Thursdays for the unplugged sessions or on weekend nights
for live rock and country music. QOpen 08:00 - 02:00. EB
Stylus Club Marriott H-4, Rr. Ismail Qemali, tel. +355
4 226 54 42. A café and bar behind Enver Hoxha's old villa
that reall y comes alive during the Friday and Saturday night
karaoke sessions - warble along to your favourite Albanian
or foreign song together wi th the Magic 4 group (www.
magic4.4mg.com). The karaoke starts at 22:30.
Tiki I-4, Rr. Perlat Rexhepi. Surf's up at the tropical-style Tiki
Bar, where surfboards stand in the sand, a ropey ship-theme domi-
nates the two-storey interior, and palm leaf parasols shade the
cocktail-sipping patrons from the Albanian sun. Wednesdays sees
bands play live ere, while house and R&B DJs take over on Friday
and Saturday. QOpen 08:00 - 02:00, Fri, Sat 08:30 - 04:00. EB
Tirana Rock I-4, Rr. Abdyl Frashëri, tel. +355 69
260 06 57. One of Tirana's best bars has a lot of wood,
wild parties and loud rock music played every Wednesday,
Friday and Saturday. Their classic Tirana Rock Café T-shirts
sold out in no time, ask to see i f they're available again.
Admission is free, though beer costs more when bands
play. QOpen 17:00 - 01:00, Fri, Sat 17:00 - 05:00. PE
Read more reviews at
http://tirana.inyourpocket.com
The latest trend in Tirana; sophisticated interiors, quiet
music and a good selection of wines to sample.
Alcora G/H-4, Blv. Dëshmorët e Kombit, Twin Towers,
tel. +355 4 228 01 42. A popular and stylishly upmarket
wine bar on the fourth floor of the Twin Towers complex.
The locals come here for the see-and-be-seen factor and
nip coffee and wine or taste the antipasta dishes. There’s
a very nice terrace with views of the treetops, budgies in a
cage and a tree lit up pink. QOpen 08:00 - 24:00. PB
Bonaparte G/H-4, Blv. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit, tel.
+355 69 407 47 03. The most upmarket wine bar in
town can be found on the first floor here. Overlooked by a
portrait of Napoleon, visitors can get sozzled on a dizzying
array of quality French wines, cognac and over 30 types
of whiskey. Exclusive Armagnac brandy is also served at
€1500 a bottle or a mere €150 per glass. Snacks are
served, as are Cuban cigars that may be smoked here.
On our visit, we were treated to a delicious dry and fruity
Bordeaux wine, a 2005 Chateau Lagasse. Yum. QOpen
09:00 - 01:00, Sun 17:00 - 01:00.
Enoteca Joan H-4, Rr. Pjetër Bogdani 8, tel. +355 69
207 35 90. A wine-lovers’ café run by a sommelier - what
could possibly be better? Sample a large variety of mainly
Italian wines, as well as some great Italian and French
dishes, in this small venue that’s set back from the road.
QOpen 11:30 - 23:00, Sun 18:30 - 23:00. (600-900 lek).
Wine Spirit I-3, Rr. Andon Zako Çajupi, tel. +355 69
208 84 81. Hidden deep in the bllok area near the Conad
supermarket, this is one of Tirana’s better wine bars, with
a dark wood interior with old carpets and a grand piano.
The walls are lined with wine bottles, as they should be,
and the selection of Italian, French and other foreign wines
is complemented by a selection of Albanian reds, of which
Kajoshi is worth a try. There’s Italian food on offer (pasta,
seafood) and on Friday and Saturday evenings there’s
live tinkling on the piano. QOpen 17:00 - 01:00. PE
Wine bars
Imagine H-6, Rr. Themistokli Gjërmenji, tel. +355
68 206 10 88. A rock bar with a homage to the late
great John Lennon, with black and white photos of him
and other famous musicians lining the walls. Imagine is
pleasant enough for some late-night drinking, but is at
its best when live rock music is played on Fridays and
Saturdays. QOpen 07:00 - 24:00. PE
Rei Jazz Club I-4, Rr. Abdyl Frashëri 5, Vesa Center,
tel. +355 4 227 88 87. A great bar dedicated to re-
corded and live jazz music on the ground floor of the Vesa
Center building. Only drinks are served, and there’s a good
variety of beer, wine,cocktails and dozens of whiskeys
available. At 22:30 on Friday and Saturday nights, local
and foreign artists play live; the admission fee charged on
these nights includes a drink. QOpen 08:00 - 24:00, Fri,
Sat 08:00 - 02:00. Admission on concert nights 1,500 lek.
Jazz Clubs
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NIGHTLIFE
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
35
WHAT TO SEE
January - June 2010 tirana.inyourpocket.com
Raum H-4, Rr. Vaso Pasha, tel. +355 69 337 02
01. How l oud can a student bar get? Raum does i ts
best to put thi s to the test, and the crowd dancing
away the ni ght in thi s first-fl oor bar must be deaf for
days af ter the par t y. Expect fri endl y students, cheap
cocktail s, sweat y moves on the dance fl oor and rup-
tured eardrums.
Sharm Club I-5, Sheshi Italia, tel. +355 4 224 90 26,
www.sharm-club.net. With a large outdoor space for cool-
ing down on warm nights, Sharm is a disco club done up in
outrageous colours and materials (think glass floors, padded
walls and Ionian pillars), and playing the usual house hits to
a happy crowd. Just east of the Sheraton. Q Open Fri, Sat
22:00-03:00. PE
Venue Dance Club Rr. Sadik Petrela 20, tel. +355 68
301 21 13, www.venuedanceclub.com. A rocking dance
club with a rather strange name playing house and dance
music, with occasional stage shows and live music. There's
a terrific party atmosphere and cheap drinks. The club is
northeast of the centre near Rruga Qemal Stafa, near the
ring road; tell the cabbie it's near Profarma. Q Open Fri, Sat
22:00-04:30. PAE
Pubs
Irish Bar Tirana H-4, Rr. Pjeter Bogdani. A fan-
tasti c Iri sh bar in Tirana's bll ok area, wi th several Iri sh
beers on offer, though l acki ng pub grub. There are
TV screens showi ng spor ts. The best thi ng about
the bar i s the buzzing atmosphere and the pl easant
outsi de seating area. QOpen 08:00 - 24:00, Fri, Sat
08:00 - 03:00. B
Bar & Night club
adresa: Rruga Murat Toptani Kompleksi, Millennium
Zero 42 H-4, Rr. Pjetër Bogdani. A popular and very sleek
black-and-white lounge bar decorated with photos of blond beau-
ties. Join the in-crowd to sip wine, down cocktails and talk the
talk, or dance the dance to the live music occasionally planned on
Saturdays. QOpen 08:00 - 24:00, Fri, Sat 08:00 - 03:00. PE
Casinos
Regency Casino G-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit,
Rinia Park, Taiwan, tel. +355 4 227 47 39, www.regen-
cycasino.al. The casino inside the Tai wan complex has 20
gaming tables and 250 slot machines. Dress up, bring ID and
be older than 21 to get in.
Clubs
Folie F-5, Rr. Murat Toptani, tel. +355 69 208 77 33,
foliebar@gmail.com, www.myspace.com/foliebar.
Playing ‘selected music for good people’ in an extravagant
three-storey space with plenty of glass balconies for making
yourself seen, Folie has burst on the scene as Tirana’s best
new club. Set beside the Millennium cinema, the club has a
fantastic outdoor terrace area too. Watch the website and
posters for their themed nights.
Lollipop H-4, Rr. Pjeter Bogdani 32, tel. +355 69 210
13 13, lollipop@gmail.com, www.myspace.com/lollipop-
tirana. An achingl y trendy club for Tirana's coolest people,
with lots of brushed steel, sofas in vivid red and blinding white
and polka dots on the wall. At the weekend the DJs come
out and do their thing competing against the live bands at
Charl's Bistro across the street. Strictl y a house and dance
music venue. QOpen 10:00 - 02:00, Fri, Sat 10:00 - 05:00.
Beer 400 lek. PB
Tirana’s sights are quite low-key, and therefore the
must-sees can nearly be counted on one finger. If time
allows you to take in some culture, follow our short city
walk (see page 36), visiting the Et’hem Bey Mosque
and the National History Museum before getting a
coffee in the bllok area.
Essential Tirana
of the city, new shops, offices, apartments and a cinema
mul tiplex. Starting with the empty spot to the west of the
National History Museum, it looks like Tirana's main square
will finall y be hip.
Museums & Galleries
Archaeological Museum (Muzeu Arkeologjik) I-5,
Sheshi Nënë Tereza, tel. +355 4 222 65 41. Archeology
buffs who aren't satisfied by the finds on display at the
National History Museum will find even more fragments of
various finds here, from pottery and animal statuettes to
arrowheads and jewellery. QOpen 10:30 - 14:30. Closed
Sat, Sun. Admission free.
Art Gallery (Galleria e Arteve) F-4/5, Blv. Dëshmorët
e Kombit, tel. +355 4 223 39 75. Thoroughl y looted in
1997, this gallery has seen a comeback since mayor Edi
Rama's election, and now hosts a varied collection that's
worth browsing through. Apart from an impressi ve selec-
tion of medieval icons, there's a good hall devoted to realist
socialist art, with busts, paintings and a very sexy statue of
a factory worker. There are also usuall y a few temporary art
exhibitions going on. Al though the building needs some work,
the garden outside has recentl y been beautifull y restored.
Walk to the rear of the building to find some discarded but still
defiant Communist-era partizan statues clenching their fists
at the sky. Q Open 09:00 - 13:00, 17:00 - 20:00. Closed
Mon. Admission 100 lek, Sunday free.
Mezuraj Museum (Mezuraj Muze) E-3, Rr. Kavajës,
Sun Business Centre, tel. +355 4 226 71 96, www.
mezuraj.museum. Tirana's first private museum consists of
the 800-object Mezuraj famil y collection of which a changing
selection is on display. Two rooms are dedicated to Albanian
paintings and sculptures, wi th a striking Socialist Realist
depiction of happy young people on a harvest campaign.
There are also various archaeological artefacts on display,
including Greek amphorae, beautiful bronze-age jewellery, 4th
century weights, spearheads, and a plate from the sunken
Italian warship 'Po'. Find the museum above the Raiffeisen
bank on the first floor of the tall business centre 500m from
Skanderbeg Square; enter on the right side of the building.
QOpen 09:00 - 18:00. Closed Sun. Admission 300 lek,
children under 12 free.
Main sights
Central Market (Pazari i ri) E-5, Sheshi Avni Rustemi.
Small fruit and vegetable stalls can be found across the city,
but the dail y pazari i ri ('new market') trul y captures the spirit
of the country in a messy explosion of colour, people, fresh
produce and trash. Apart from fruit, vegetables, fish and meat,
the stalls display a dozen varieties of olives, cheeses, wines
and raki throughout small squares and snaking alleyways.
Animal rights activists won't like the sight of bunches of live
chickens slung over bicycle handlebars, but at least these
chicks didn't grow up in our Guantanamo poul try farms. Earl y
morning is the best time of day to witness Balkan-style trad-
ing and haggling.
Martyrs' Cemetery (Varrezat e Dëshmorëve) Rr.
Elbasanit. This cemetery holds the remains of 900 partisans
who fought for Tirana in WWII. The 12m-high dynamic white
statue of Mother Albania, inaugurated in 1972, watches over
the graves in a windswept gown. Enver Hoxha used to be
buried at her feet until he fell from grace in 1991. From the
heights of the cemetery, Tirana and Mt. Daj ti are spread out
panoramicall y before you. A short drive on the bus to Sauk.
QOpen 08:00 - 17:00.
Pyramid (International Culture Centre) G-5, Blv.
Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. The pyramid, as i t's popularl y
known, opened in 1988 as a museum dedicated to the Alba-
nian dictator-cum-pharaoh Enver Hoxha. Designed by Hoxha's
daughter Pranvera, the building was reportedl y the most
expensive ever erected in Albania. After the regime collapsed,
the place became a conference center and disco (called The
Mummy, of course). Currentl y it's being renovated to house
a theatre. In front of the building, the Peace Bell installation
was made in 1999 as a memorial to peace by the children
of Shkodra. The bell's metal comes from thousands of bullet
cartridges, fired off during the lawless 1990s.
Skanderbeg Square (Sheshi Skënderbej) E-4, .
Tirana's main square, Sheshi Skënderbej, is that vast expanse
of asphal t where you‘ve got to dodge both Mercedes and
plastic kiddie cars. The square was large even before World
War II, but the Communists made it absolutel y massive (and
in the process, cleared away an old bazaar).
Started in 1958, the pompous Palace of Culture was built with
Soviet assistance. But when Albanian-Soviet relations dete-
riorated, the chief Soviet engineer on the project gathered up
all the blueprints and left the country. Chinese experts had
to be called in to finish the job. Today this building contains
the Opera and the National Library.
The mosaic on the facade of the National History Museum
represents the flow of Albanian history. The Puppet Theater
has a surprising past: before World War II, it housed King
Zog‘s puppet parliament. Other sights here include the
imposing red-brick National Bank, the Et‘hem Bey Mosque
and Skanderbeg's statue.
Recent plans envision a complete makeover of Tirana's city
centre over the next years, with a green and pedestrianised
main square, 80m-high buildings accentuating the core Mosaic fragment at the Shëngjin Church ruin
36
WHAT TO SEE
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
37
WHAT TO SEE
January - June 2010 tirana.inyourpocket.com
National History Museum (Muzeu Historik Kom-
bëtar) E-4, Sheshi Skenderbej, tel. +355 4 222 34 46,
informacioni@albmuseum.com, www.albmuseum.com.
You can't miss the gargantuan mosaic on the facade - it rep-
resents the development of Albania's history with everyone
from Illirians to partisans represented. Inside, each hall covers
one of the stages in the development of the Albanian nation.
Repeated looting in the 1990s has robbed the museum of
many artefacts, but it remains the best place in Albania to
tank up on history and to view beautiful finds from the many
archeological sites across the country. One hall focuses on
the years around the Second World War and the resistance
movements, while the museum ends with a harrowing exhibi-
tion about Albania's gruesome labour camp system and the
thousands of men and women who were swallowed by it.
There are some English texts but it's best to bring an Albanian
for a better understanding. The museum shop is an excellent
place to shop for traditional crafts. QOpen 10:00 - 17:00, Sun
10:00 - 15:00. Closed Mon. Admission 300 lek.
Shëngjin Church Mosaic (Mozaiku i Tiranës) E-2,
Rr. Naim Frashëri. An excavated Byzantine-era church ruin that
was only discovered in 1972 boasts Tirana's oldest artworks:
mosaics with geometric patterns and depictions of poultry and
fish. Nicely exhibited in a little park and protected by a makeshift
roof, there are also various stones, some from the church
iconostasis, scattered around the site. Unfortunately there's
little in the way of explanations. A little obscure but well worth
a look if you're in this part of town: look for the Hallall pizzeria
on the northern end of the street, and walk 100 metres west.
QOpen 08:00 - 17:00. Closed Sun. Admission free.
Churches
Cathedral of St. Paul (Katedralja e Shen Palit) G-5,
Blv. Zhan D’Ark, tel. +355 4 223 46 55. Tirana’s Catholic ca-
thedral looks somewhat bland on the outside save for the statue
of St Paul perched on the roof, but it has a quite nice interior
with impressive concrete architecture. Note Mother Teresa and
Pope John Paul II featured in the stained glass windows. Q Open
08:30-12:30, 17:00-19:00, winter afternoons: 16:00-19:00.
Catholic Church (Kisha Katolike) F-3, Rr. Kavajës,
tel. +355 4 224 86 91, genizah@albmail.com. Buil t in
1865, the Catholic Church of St. Marie was a gift of Franz Jo-
sef, the Austro-Hungarian emperor. In 1967 - when all religious
activity in Albania was banned - it was closed and turned into
a cinema. It reopened as a church in 1990.
Orthodox Cathedral F-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit.
Under construction, the massive new Orthodox cathedral
currentl y looks like a nuclear power plant but will assume a
more church-like look when it’s finished in 2010.
Orthodox Church (Kisha Orthodokse) F-2, Rr. Kavajës
151, tel. +355 4 223 50 95, www.orthodoxalbania.org. The
Orthodox Church of the Holy Annunciation was built in 1964, but
closed in 1967 and was then used to house the Tirana Sports
Club. Services resumed in 1990. The Orthodox Church of Albania
first became autocephalous in 1937 and again in 1992.
Ottoman Tirana
Clock Tower (Kulla e sahatit) F-4/5, Sheshi Sken-
derbej, tel. +355 4 224 32 92. Tirana's landmark central
sight is the clock tower from 1822. Brightl y lit at night, it can
be seen from the far end of Rr. Durrësit when entering the
city. Started off by Et`hem Bey, completed by the locals and
extended to 35m in 1928, when a German-made clock was
also installed, it was for long the highest building in town, and
Tirana’s most signi ficant buildings are concentrated
along one thoroughfare: the Boulevard of the Martyrs
(Bulevardi Dëshmorët e Kombit). The walk described
below, from Skanderbeg Square to the Pol ytechnic
University, will take you past Tirana’s highlights in a flash.
Starting underneath the mosaic of the National Museum
on Skanderbeg Square, pass Et’hem Bey Mosque to-
wards the elegant government buildings at the end of the
square, housing ministries and the town hall. These were
built in the 1930s, during the rule of King Zog.
The grand boulevard leading south from here was the
brainchild of the Italian Fascists, who held parades here
during World War II. It later became the venue for the locals’
xhiro (evening stroll). In fact, it used to be closed off to traf-
fic in evenings - what bliss that would be now. Cross the
next street (Rruga Myslym Shyri) and on your left is the Fine
Arts Gallery, then, hidden behind trees, Hotel Dajti. On your
right is Rinia Park, which was until a few years ago buried
beneath illegally built bars and pizzerias. The municipality
reclaimed the area, and with popular support bulldozed
the buildings in order to restore the park.
Walk across the next wide streets (Bulevardi Zhan D’Ark;
Bulevardi Bajram Curri) and perhaps without noticing
you’ve crossed the Lana River, whose green banks
were also crammed with illegal buildings until order was
restored. Here you arrive at the ‘pyramid’. On your right,
next to the ugliest new business centre in townis a small
park with the busts of the three Frashëri brothers.
Just past the next crossing on your left is the Prime
Minister’s Residence, which was once the Communist
Party headquarters. During official demonstrations and
parades, Party leaders stood on the balcony here and
waved to the masses below. On the right is the former
Party Committee building.
Beyond Rruga Ismail Qemali you’ll pass the Hotel Rogner
Europapark, and a little further the Palace of Congresses,
a boldly modernist building of mirrored glass and dynamic
horizontal lines. Maybe it’s the latter that gives the building
a weird resemblance to a sports stadium. Originally built for
Party congresses, the Palace now hosts concerts, festivals
and fairs. On your right, fenced off and concealed behind pine
trees, is the President’s Palace. This building served as the
Soviet embassy until 1961, when all diplomatic relations were
broken off, and for a while thereafter it housed parliament.
The disproportionately large, empty square at the end of the
boulevard is Sheshi Nënë Tereza (Mother Teresa Square),
named for the nun who was arguably the most famous
Albanian of the 20th century. To the left is the Archaeological
Museum; on the right, the Art Academy. At the very end of
the boulevard stands the Polytechnic University, originally
erected by the Italian Fascists. Its imposing stone façade
certainly seems better fitted for reviewing goose-stepping
soldiers from than for studying in. Going further down the
paths on either side of the university whisks you out of urban
Tirana and into the Grand Park.
City walk
Just over 15 years ago, all Albania was a living Stalinist
themepark. Since then, most of the ‘attractions’ have
disappeared, but a few relics are still left over (including
the entrance fee you pay at the border to get into this
amusement park).
During the communist era, the bllok (block) area, was
off-limits to the public and cordoned off by armed guards.
This was the residential area of Party leaders. The col-
lection of villas here, impressive enough by Western
standards, absolutely dazzled the average Albanian
once this area was opened to the public. The three-
story, modular home on the corner of Rr. Dëshmorët
e 4 Shkurtit and Rr. Ismail Qemali was dictator Enver
Hoxha’s villa, which is now a government residence. After
Hoxha’s death, the Enver Hoxha Memorial (the pyramid)
was built in his honour. And a massive gilded statue of
Hoxha was erected on Skanderbeg Square - you can still
see the raised pedestal. It was dramatically toppled by
demonstrators in 1991, and Hoxha’s longstanding cult
of personality was over. After the regime collapsed, not
even Hoxha’s remains could evade the judgement of
history. Originally buried with honours in the Martyrs’
Cemetery, Hoxha was dug up in 1992 and unceremoni-
ously filed away in Kombinati Cemetery in west Tirana.
A statue of Lenin once stood on Blv. Dëshmorët e Kombit,
in front of the Fine Arts Gallery. Across the street stood a
bust of Joseph Stalin - probably the last place in Europe
where he was thus honoured. Uncle Joe’s head was
carted away before the fall of the regime at the end of
1990, but this symbolical de-Stalinisation came too late
to save the leaders.
Behind the Ministry of the Interior on Blv. Dëshmorët e
Kombit stood the headquarters of the Sigurimi (state
security police). The feared Sigurimi ran labor camps for
political prisoners and maintained a network of informers
(known as ‘80 lek men,’ for the monthly 80 lek bonus
they supposedly got for snitching on their countrymen).
The Fine Arts Gallery has some Socialist Realist statues
and paintings that are worth a look, and you can find
some of Tirana’s last Commie statues huddled in a
group behind the building. The best place to get more
information about Albania’s totalitarian years is the Na-
tional History Museum which has a large hall dedicated
to the period.
Communist sights
Worker statues of Tirana, united JvM
the views of the city centre from the top are worth the climb.
The shadow of the tower strikes the mosque at sunset, an
event long used to demark the closing time of the formerl y
adjacent market place. Q Open Mon 09:00-13:00, Thu
09:00-13:00, 16:00-18:00. Admission 100 lek.
Et'hem Bey Mosque F-4, Sheshi Skenderbej, tel. +355
4 222 37 01. Perhaps the only real sight in Tirana, this pretty
mosque is right on the city's main square, making it hard
to miss. Construction of the 'Xhamia e Haxhi Ethem Beut'
mosque started in 1794 and was finished in 1821 by Et'hem
Bey (who evidently got all the credit). Closed under communist
rule, the mosque reopened as a house of worship in 1991,
without permission from the authorities. 10,000 courageous
people dared to attend and remarkabl y the police did not
interfere. The event was a milestone in the rebirth of religious
freedom in Albania. Take a look at the frescoes outside and in
the portico which depict trees, waterfalls and bridges - motifs
rarel y seen in Islamic art. Take your shoes off before entering
the inner room. QOpen 09:00 - 12:00, 14:00-18:00.
Fortress of Justinian (Kalaja) F-5, Rr. Murat Toptani.
When this fortress was buil t in the 6th century, Albania was
but an outpost on the western fringe of the Byzantine Em-
pire. The fortress the place where the main east-west and
north-south roads crossed, and formed the heart of Tirana.
About all that's left of the fortress above ground is a 6m-high
Ottoman-era wall, covered in vines. In late 2008, archaeolo-
gists uncovered the extensive fortress foundations that will
soon be incorporated into the pedestrianised street.
Galeria Shijaku (Sali Shijaku House) B-5, Rr. V.
Luarasi, tel. +355 4 226 14 58. A large Ottoman-era konak
house surrounded by a lovel y garden and a high wall. There's
a shady café terrace in the garden, while the high main room
has been converted into an art gallery. QOpen 09:00 - 17:00.
House of the Dervish Khorosani D-4, Rr. Barrikadave.
A pretty 19th century wooden building set in a small courtyard.
Next to the gate is an octagonal türbe holding the graves
of three babas. Find the house in a small courtyard 100m
beyond the French cul tural institute.
Tanners' Bridge (Ura e tabakëve) F-6, Rr. Presidenti
George W. Bush, intersection with Blv. Zhan D`Ark. This
elegant Ottoman stone footbridge was once the main connection
between Tirana and the highlands to the east. It was used to get
agricultural produce and livestock across the Lana River to the
markets, and sits in the area of skinners and leather workers. The
Lana was rerouted in the 1930s and the bridge was neglected, even-
tually becoming a rubbish tip. It's now restored to its former glory
and is used by pedestrians again. Watch out - slippery when wet.
Teqeja Dervish Hatixhe C-4, Rr. Dervish Hatixhe. Dedi-
cated to the female Bektashi Islamic saint Dervish Hatixhe who
was the Tirana Nightingale, nursing people through a cholera
epidemic. On her death in 1798 a tekke was founded near her
turbe (grave). It miraculously survived the communist era and
is still visited by people of varying religions, especially women.
A corridor leads past a soot-blackened candle room to where
the graves of Hatixhe and her family members can be seen.
Tomb of Kaplan Pasha (Tyrbe e Kapllan Pasha)
F-5, Rr. 28 Nëntori. This türbe, or tomb, dates from 1817.
It honours Kaplan Pasha, who ruled Tirana in the earl y 19th
century. It consists of eight classical columns linked by arches.
Left derelict, trash-strewn and half-sunk into the pavement
and lit onl y by a blue neon lamp for many years, it is now to
be renovated and graciousl y shielded by the concave wall of
the high-rise building currentl y under construction next to it.
On Skanderbeg Square
38
WHAT TO SEE
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
39
January - June 2010 tirana.inyourpocket.com
AROUND TOWN
Parks & Gardens
Botanical gardens (Kopshti Botanik) , tel. +355
4 222 52 87. Part of Tirana University's Facul ty of Natural
Sciences, Tirana's botanical garden is a pleasant 15-hectare
area on the slopes to the southwest of the centre. Founded in
1971, it houses about 1400 species of plants, representing
about a third of the Albanian flora. Near to the zoo. QOpen
08:00 - 14:00.
Zoo (Kopshti Zoologjik Tiranë) Grand Park.
Vi si ting Tirana's zoo i s a fairl y depressing experi ence.
The inmates are kept in a small bl ock that i s di vi ded
into ten cell s. The animal s appear to be reasonabl y
wel l fed and physi cal l y cared for, but the f i nanci al
chal l enges of the i nsti tuti on are evi dent. The pens
are small, featurel ess and clad wi th hospi tal til es. The
wol f scat ters at any approach to the bars, a monkey
gazes at the ceiling, hi s chin resting against the wall.
The bedraggl ed gol den eagl es - supposedl y the proud
symbol of Al bania - do have a perch, but i t's a steplad-
der. A li t tl e fur ther into the park al ong the pond, the
lamas don't know how good they have i t in their chal et
housing, whil e at the back the gap in the broken fence
seems an i deal escape route for the ani mal s when
the l ocks finall y rust through. We've heard of plans to
overhaul the zoo, but there's been li t tl e acti on till now.
Find the zoo's unmarked entrance gate on the square at
the end of the Grand Park dam. QOpen 09:00 - 18:00.
Admi ssi on 50 l ek.
Statues & Monuments
Fan Noli Statue E-5, Sheshi Fan Noli. This more than
3m tall, roughl y hewn statue commemorates Fan Noli
(1882 - 1965), one of Albania's most revered historical
figures. Educated at Harvard, Noli was a wri ter and Or-
thodox bishop. He served as prime minister in 1924. In
his spare time he translated Shakespeare and Cervantes
into Albanian.
Mother Teresa statue I-5, Sheshi Nënë Tereza. A mod-
est statue of Skopje-born but ethnic Albanian Nënë Tereza or
Mother Teresa stands in the southeast corner of the square
named after her.
Skanderbeg Statue E/F-4, Sheshi Skenderbej.
Gj erg j Kastrioti (1405-68), also known as Skanderbeg in
English and Skenderbej in Albanian, is the onl y historical
figure whom all Albanians agree was a national hero. He
managed to create an independent Albanian princedom
and keep i t free for 25 long years. After his death, Albania
was occupied by the Ottomans, but Skanderbeg's legacy
preserved the Albanian national identi ty throughout 500
years of Ottoman rule. Albanians consider him not onl y
the father of their nation, but also the man who saved
all Europe from the Ottoman Empire. The statue was
unveiled in 1968, exactl y 500 years after Skanderbeg's
death. Considering the era in which i t was made, i t's sur-
prising how li ttle concession the sculptor made to official
socialist-realist style.
Unknown Partisan Statue F-5, Rr. Presidenti George
W. Bush. Fist upraised, fighting mad, charging forward with
a rifle in his hand - yes, it`s none other than the Unknown
Partisan. This statue was erected to honor the many Albanian
partisans who gave their lives fighting the fascists. Those
guys hanging out around the monument in the morning are
not WWII buffs but day labourers waiting for work, with their
powerdrills and tools on display.
Grand Park (Parku
i Madh) K-5, . A short
st rol l sout h of cen-
tral Tirana, the Grand
Park i s a haven from
all the traffic and dust.
At one time, thousands
of the ci t y’s inhabi t-
ants came here on
hol i days to pl ay and
picnic; now i t’s a place
for peopl e to snooze
af t er l uncht i me, t o
fi sh, or to swim. The
park i s unfor tunatel y
not free of trash, and
some locals still think
they can dri ve and park their cars on the pedestrian
paths, but this may change after the long-announced
renovation of the park.
Reach the park by walking up the path to the west of
the uni versi ty building; you’ll end up near Tirana Lake
(romanticall y known by locals as ‘the arti ficial lake’),
which has some intriguing crumbling concrete platforms
sticking out of i t and is surrounded by pleasant parkland
and a few restaurants. Walk west and you’ll soon reach
the dam, at the end of which you’ll find Tirana Zoo and
a few enterprising car wash businesses using up the
lake water.
Walk east uphill to find several intriguing memorials.
One is the well-tended cemetery for the British troops
who died fighting the Germans in WWII. Their sacrifice
was long suppressed from the historical record, since
Bri tain was considered an imperialist enemy. Nearby
stand several grey stones listing the names of all Ger-
man soldiers who died in Albania during WWII, some of
them buried at this site. Just up the hill are the tombs of
the Frashëri brothers, who helped catal yse the Albanian
national awakening in the late 19th century. Abdyl was
leader of the Prizren League; Sami was a radical agitator
for an independent Albanian republic; and Naim was the
first major Albanian-language poet. Across the field to the
right is an anti-fascist monument.
The Palace of the Brigades, which once served as the
residence of King Zog, stands at the edge of the park
along Rr. Elbasani t and was named for the partisans
who captured it in WWII. Now used for official receptions
(and with a military headquarters nearby), it is off limits
to the public.
Rinia Park G-4, Blv. Dëshmorët e Kombit. Until a few
years ago, Rinia Park in the city centre was a disgrace-
ful mess of illegal constructions, garbage and shady
dealings. During the ci ty’s cleanup, the buildings were
bulldozed and the resul t is this pleasant spot of green.
The park is now the proud focus of the evening xhiro,
when thousands of Tiranians stroll around to meet up
and chat wi th friends. The spidery whi te building that
looks like it could be the lair of some James Bond villain
is actuall y one of Tirana’s best attractions. Nicknamed
Tai wan, apparentl y for being a sort of island in the park,
the complex houses restaurants, a swish terrace café and
a multi-level underground bowling alley, and a casino. The
main attraction however is the fountain in front of Tai wan
which in the evening fascinates hundreds of young and
old onlookers with its lightshow.
Tirana parks
The Grand Park lake AT
No trip to Tirana is complete without a trip out of Tirana.
When you’ve had enough of dust, mud and traffic, get
out and see some of the impressive landscapes in the
surrounding area.
Black Cave (Shpella e Zeze) For a delightful (half-)day
trip away from the city, visit the Shpella e Zeze (Black Cave)
in Pelumbas for some fresh air, beautiful rural landscapes, an
invigorating walk and some ancient history. From the local bar
in Pelumbas village it’s a two-kilometre along a well-prepared
path along the Erzen River canyon to the cave entrance, where
a guard hands out hardhats - bring a torch. The Black Cave
was inhabited in prehistoric times, first by bears who left a
scattering of bones, later by humans who dropped all man-
ner of tools in the neolithic, bronze and iron ages. To reach
Pelumbas village (in Ibë municipality), drive east along the
road to Elbasan and turn off at the ‘theatre’ sign, parking at
the restaurant by the river. Swimming in the river is possible
here. Outdoor Albania (see travel agents) was instrumental
in opening up this cave for visitors, and does regular daytrips
(€30/25) to the area which include transport, guiding and a
traditional meal.
Dajti Ekspres Cable Car (Teleferik) Linza, tel.
+355 4 37 91 11/+355 69 230 22 15 (shuttle bus),
dajtiekspres@yahoo.com, www.dajtiekspres.com.
Whi sking you up to 1230m above sea l evel in under
15 minutes, the Austrian-buil t Daj ti Express cabl e car
on the outskir ts of Tirana is a fun ride. Swooping over
pastures, a lake and steep rocks, the 4km route offers
great vi ews of the mountain and the ci ty, ending at the
edge of Daj ti pi cni c fi eld near the top of the mountain.
There you can hike in the lush forests, visi t the Ballkoni
Daj ti t restaurant, or take one of the shuttl e vans to the
other hillside restaurants. A taxi from the ci ty centre to
the lower station should cost about 500 lek. A free shuttle
servi ce is availabl e from the terminus of the Porcelan bus
from the ci ty centre. I f you’re dri ving, foll ow Rruga Hoxha
Taksim east - when you see the si gn indi cating i t’s 150
metres to the l eft you know i t’s still about a kil ometre.
Q Open 08:00 - 22:00 (winter 08:00 - 20:00). Cl osed
during strong wind. Return ti ckets 500 l ek.
Kruja
Kruja, 47 km north of Tirana, is touted as a good daytrip from
the capital, not only for sightseeing but also for souvenir-hunt-
ing. However, if you’ve already been to Berat and Gjirokaster,
you may be disappointed with the humble nature of this town,
despite its setting and shopping possibilities.
The most important sight in Kruja is the semi-ruined citadel
area, a fortress dating back to the fifth or sixth century and
perched dramaticall y on a rocky outcrop. Onl y by the end of
the 12th century was the citadel completed. It weathered
many sieges, the most famous being the Ottoman campaigns
repulsed by the Albanian warrior Skanderbeg and his men.
Kruja thus became a symbol of national resistance - not until
1478 (after Skanderbeg’s death) did the Ottomans succeed
in capturing the citadel. One of the few original structures
remaining is the clock tower, which was an observation and
signalling post.
To the left of the citadel‘s main entrance is the Gjergj Kas-
trioti Museum (200 lek, open 09:00 - 13:00, 16:00 - 19:00,
closed Mon), buil t to honour the man otherwise known as
Skanderbeg, and a shrine for Albanians though less interest-
ing for foreigners. The museum was built with a fake medieval
façade in 1982 and houses copies of Skanderbeg’s sword
and spiky helmet (the originals are in Vienna), paintings and
exhibits (mostl y replicas) presenting Skanderbeg’s struggle
against the Ottomans.
Just down the hill is the excellent small Ethnographic Mu-
seum (tel. 053 22 225, open 08:00 - 13:00, 15:00 - 20:00,
admission 200 lek) which displays the beautiful interior of
a traditional Albanian house around 1800. Exhibits include
19th-century folk dress, as well as traditional copper goods
and clay utensils. The friendl y caretaker will take you on a
whirl wind English-language tour of the rooms.
Though usuall y skipped by most visitors, the small streets
immediatel y below the Ethnographic Museum are Kruja’s
best; narrow and winding past high courtyard walls like they
did 500 years ago. Wander around and you’ll come across
the old citadel hamam (baths, now converted to a church)
and the lovel y Dollma teqe, a Bektashi temple building with
impressive decorations.
Just outside the citadel is the old bazaar; one street of quaint
shops with windows full of antiques, silver filigree jewellery, folk
costumes, woven rugs and traditional fel t hats. When you’re
done shopping and sightseeing, head for the restaurants at
the upper end of the citadel, which offer great views of the
surroundings and serve Albanian food. Turkish coffee comes
in a traditional copper pot and is best enjoyed curled up on
the rows of pillows that surround the Turkish tables of some
restaurants.
Getting to Kruja: A taxi will cost 2000 - 3000 lek (negotiate
this beforehand). The bus costs 150 lek. As Kruja is just 30
minutes from the airport, it can easily be visited in the morning
for some last minute shopping before you catch your flight. If
you’re driving, you’ll be delighted to hear there are no signs
at all to Kruja until just before the citadel. Follow the Shkodra
road from Tirana turn right into Fushe Kruje (famous for the
George Bush disappearing watch act); go straight through this
town and stay on the main road, twisting up through the forest
and Kruja town, until you see signs marked Kalaje (fortress).
Petrela Castle
tel. +355 69 208 8138. One of Albania’s best-preserved
castles, Petrela Castle sits picturesquel y on a steep slope
overlooking a river, 15 km southeast of Tirana, along the road
to Elbasan. On a clear day you can see all the way to Kruja.
Emperor Justinian fortified this place to defend the settlement
of Dyrrachium (now Durrës). The tower in the centre dates
back to 500 AD; surrounding it are walls from the Byzantine
period, laid out in a triangle, with round towers at the corners.
The castle was used during Skanderbeg’s war against the
Turks; his sister Mamica lived here and defended the castle,
but it was eventuall y captured and used by Turkish soldiers.
QOpen 11:30 - 23:30. Admission free.
Cable car going up Mount Daj ti
40
GETTING AROUND
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
41
GETTING AROUND
January - June 2010 tirana.inyourpocket.com
Arriving in Tirana is not as straightforward and smooth
as it should be, but we’re working on it. Once you’re here,
keep in mind that as long as you are on the ground it’s go-
ing to be a bumpy ride, whether you take a taxi, bus or car.
Airport & Airlines
Tirana International Airport (TIA, tel. +355 4 38 18 00,
lost & found tel. +355 69 206 66 26, www.tirana-
airport.com) is officially named Nënë Tereza or Mother
Teresa airport, but is also known as Rinas. The airport is
17km northwest of Tirana. The new access road and pas-
senger terminal that were opened in 2007 have catapulted
the airport into the 21st century, and passing through is a
pleasant experience.
A taxi to the airport costs about €20, call a yellow Airport
Express Taxi (ATE, tel. 223 34 19, 068 204 95 98, 068
207 03 11) and pay 2000 lek, or 2500 lek at night. A trip
to the airport usually takes 20 minutes. Parking at the
airport is free for 15 minutes, 150 lek for an hour, 720 lek
for a day and 3000 lek per week.
The Rinas Express airport bus (tel. 069 209 89 08, 069
205 40 02) departs every hour between 07:00 and 19:00
from beside the National Museum on Skenderbeg Square;
tickets cost 250 lek and the trip takes under an hour.
Buses from the airport to the centre depart every hour
between 08:00 and 19:00.
Airport facilities include free wifi and an Adrion press
shop (open 03:00-21:00) selling newspapers, books, Alba-
nia T-shirts and In Your Pocket city guides. Vodafone and
Eagle both have shops selling SIM and recharge cards.
There’s a tourist information desk in the arrivals area
only. The small departures area has fashion, jewellery and
duty-free shops (www.albaniadutyfree.com, tel. +355 42
38 19 48, open 07:00-23:00; carton of cigarettes €21),
and a small Adrion press shop. Smoking is banned in the
terminal, except for a small room in the departures area.
Adria Airways (JP) G-5, Blv. Bajram Curri, Galeria mall,
tel. +355 4 227 26 66, www.adria-airways.com. Flights
to Ljubljana. QOpen 08:00 - 17:00. Closed Sun.
Aegean Airlines (A3) , tel. +355 4 224 51 00/+355 4
225 33 42. Flies to Athens. Ticketing by Albtours.
Albanian Airlines (LV) E-3, Rr. Mine Peza 2, tel. +355 4
223 51 62, fax +355 4 223 51 38, ticketing@albanianair.
com, www.albanianair.com. Flights to several European
destinations. QOpen 08:00 - 17:00, Sun 09:00 - 16:00.
Alitalia (AZ) H-5, Blv. Dëshmorët e Kombit, Rogner
Europapark Hotel, tel. +355 4 223 00 23, www.alitalia.
it. Flights to Rome. QOpen 08:30 - 17:00, Sat 08:30 - 13:00.
Closed Sun.
Austrian Airlines (OS) H-5, Blv. Dëshmorët e Kombit,
Rogner Hotel Europapark, tel. +355 4 223 50 29, www.
austrian.com/al. Flights to Vienna. QOpen 09:00 - 16:30.
Closed Sat, Sun.
Belle Air (LZ) Bulevardi Zogu I, Nr.1 Qendra Tregtare
Tirana, tel. +355 4 224 01 75, reservation@flybelleair.
com, www.belleair.al. Budget flights to Pristina in Kosovo,
various Italian cities and summer destinations in Turkey and
Egypt. QOpen 08:00 - 17:00, Sat 08:00 - 13:00. Closed Sun.
British Airways (BA) , tel. +355 68 322 90 07, www.
ba.com. Flights to London Gatwick.
Bulgaria Air (FB) E-3, Rr. Durrësit 64/1, tel. +355 4
223 04 10, www.air.bg. Flights to Sofia. QOpen 08:30 -
16:00, Sat 09:00 - 12:00. Closed Sun.
Germanwings (4U) , www.germanwings.com. Budget
summertime flights to Cologne.
Jat Airways (JU) E-3, Rr. Abdi Toptani, Torre Drin
Centre, tel. +355 4 227 25 40/+355 69 202 77 00,
fax +355 4 227 25 39, tiranato@jat.com, www.jat.
com. Flights to Belgrade. QOpen 09:00 - 17:00, Sat 09:00
- 13:00. Closed Sun.
Luf thansa (LH) G-5, Blv. Zhan D’Ark, Pallatet e
Shallvareve, tel. +355 4 225 80 10, fax +355 4 225 80
11, www.lufthansa.com. Flights to Munich. Local agent:
Meridiana Travel & Tours. QOpen 08:00 - 20:00, Sat 08:00
- 14:00. Closed Sun.
Malev (MA) F-5, Rr. Abdi Toptani, Torre Drin Centre,
tel. +355 4 222 79 00, fax +355 4 223 45 78, tirana@
malev.hu, www.malev.com. Flights to Budapest. QOpen
09:00 - 17:00, Sat 09:00 - 12:00. Closed Sun.
Olympic Airways (OA) D-4, Blv. Zog I, Veve Business
Centre, tel. +355 4 222 89 60, www.olympic-airways.
com. Flights to Athens. QOpen 08:30 - 17:00, Sat, Sun
09:00 - 13:00.
Tafa Air (6Y) , tel. +355 69 405 69 52/+355 69 405
69 53, www.tafaair.com. Budget flights to Pristina.
Turkish Airlines (TK) E-4, Sheshi Skenderbej, Tirana
International Hotel, tel. +355 4 223 49 02/+355 4 222
89 60, fax +355 4 222 89 61, www.turkishairlines.com.
Flights to Istanbul. QOpen 08:30 - 17:00, Sat 08:30 - 15:00.
Closed Sun.
Buses
Despite the importance of bus travel in Albania, Tirana has
no bus station and few scheduled departures, so it’s all
a bit of a Balkan mess. Bus transport is either in normal
buses, increasingly comfortable and with air-conditioning,
or in minivans called furgons which may be a bit cheaper
and faster, but take risks in blind corners.
Most bus departures are between early morning and early
afternoon. Only the most popular cities also have connec-
tions in the late afternoon too, so it’s best to set off early.
International buses often depart from behind the National
History Museum, where you’ll also find most of the ticket-
ing agencies. Buses to Durrës depart very regularly from
beside the train station. Buses to Shkodra depart nearby,
from Rruga Karl Gega.
Minibuses (furgons) depart as soon as they’re full,
starting from various places in town, sometimes trawling
through the streets to find more passengers to cram in.
See the timetable for approximate operating hours, prices
and departure points. It’s a good idea to ask around for
the exact departure locations before travel.
Furgons heading southeast for Elbasan, Pogradec and
Korça will most likely depart from beside the Qemal Stafa
stadium and trawl around on Rruga Elbasan. Those south
to Berat, Vlora, Gjirokastra and Saranda depart from
Nëshërak and Sheshi 21 Djetori, west of the centre. Those
heading to the north (Shkodra, Kukës, etc) leave from
Sheshi Zogu i Zi or from Laprak, one traffic light further
along the Durrës highway.
Drita E-4, Rr. Ded Gjon Luli, tel. +355 4 225 12 77, www.
dritatravel.com. Buses to Pristina, Athens and Thessaloniki.
The first bus agency to have a website and online booking.
Interlines D-4, Blv. Zogu I, 39, tel. +355 4 225 18 66.
Buses to Greece. QOpen 08:00 - 21:00.
Pollogu Blv. Zogu I, Palati 103 nr 2, tel. +355 4 222
350 00/+355 69 209 49 06. Buses to destinations in
Macedonia.
Sondor E-4, Blv. Zogu I, tel. +355 4 222 50 63/+355 69
239 49 29. Buses to Kosovo, Macedonia and Montenegro.
Tirana Metropol E-4, Blv. Zogu I, tel. +355 4 225 36
39/+355 69 284 72 01. Buses to Kosovo (Pristina office
tel. 044 614 814, Peja office tel. 044 68 38 78).
From Tirana To Tirana
Days Dep. Arr. City Days Dep. Arr.
–––––6– 07:00 09:00 AMSTERDAM (LV) –––––6– 09:45 11:45
1234567 15:45 18:05 ATHENS (OP) 1234567 14:40 15:05
1––––6– 09:50 12:50 ATHENS (A3) 1––––6– 08:55 09:10
–2–45–7 16:55 19:10 ATHENS (A3) –2–45–7 14:00 16:15
––3–5–7 16:00 18:20 ATHENS (LV) ––3–5–7 18:30 19:10
1––4–6– 05:10 06:30 BUDAPEST (MA) ––3–5–7 23:10 00:30
1234567 15:10 16:30 BUDAPEST (MA) 1234567 13:10 14:30
1–3–5–– 12:40 14:10 FLORENCE (LZ) 1–3–5–– 15:00 16:30
–––––6– 07:30 09:00 FLORENCE (LZ) –––––6– 09:50 11:20
–––––6– 08:10 10:40 FRANKFURT (LV) –––––6– 11:30 14:00
–2––––– 11:10 13:40 FRANKFURT (LV) –2––––– 14:40 17:10
–––4––– 12:00 14:30 FRANKFURT (LV) –––4––– 15:40 18:10
––––––7 15:45 18:15 FRANKFURT (LV) ––––––7 19:25 21:45
1–3––6– 18:10 20:00 GENOVA (LZ) 1–3––6– 21:00 22:50
123–5–– 09:00 11:30 ISTANBUL (LV) 123–5–– 12:30 13:00
––––––7 13:00 15:55 ISTANBUL (LV) ––––––7 16:55 17:25
1–34––– 10:50 13:25 ISTANBUL (TK) 1–34––– 09:05 09:50
–2––567 14:50 17:25 ISTANBUL (TK) –2––567 18:45 17:30
1234567 15:10 16:30 LJUBJANA (JP) 1234567 13:15 14:20
––––––7 14:15 16:20 LONDON LGW (BA) ––––––7 09:30 13:30
12–4––– 15:05 17:10 LONDON LGW (BA) 12–4––– 10:20 14:20
–––––6– 19:35 21:40 LONDON LGW (BA) –––––6– 14:45 18:45
1–3–5–7 08:15 10:30 LONDON STN (LV) 1–3–5–7 11:15 15:30
–2–4––– 08:00 09:55 MILAN (LV) –2–4––– 10:45 12:45
––––––7 18:00 19:55 MILAN (LV) ––––––7 20:45 22:45
1234–67 12:50 14:40 MILAN (LZ) 1234–67 15:30 17:20
––––5–– 18:00 19:50 MILAN (LZ) ––––5–– 20:50 22:40
1–3–5–– 17:45 19:25 MILAN (AZ) 1–3–5–– 14:55 16:45
––––––7 12:00 13:45 MILAN (AZ) ––––––7 09:15 11:05
1234567 12:45 14:35 MUNICH (LH) 1234567 10:25 12:10
–––4––7 11:20 12:50 NAPLES (LZ) –––4––7 13:40 15:10
––3–5–7 15:00 17:45 PARIS (LV) ––3–5–7 18:30 21:15
–––4––7 07:50 08:40 PRISTINA (LZ) –––4––7 16:30 17:20
123–56– 13:30 14:20 PRISTINA (LZ) 123–56– 15:10 16:00
1234567 18:40 19:30 PRISTINA (LZ) 1234567 10:30 11:20
–2––––– 08:15 09:05 PRISTINA (LV) –2––––– 09:40 10:30
1–––––– 09:00 09:50 PRISTINA (LV) 1–––––– 10:05 11:15
–––4––– 13:45 14:35 PRISTINA (LV) –––4––– 15:10 16:00
–––––6– 19:30 20:20 PRISTINA (LV) ––––––7 06:55 07:45
1234567 09:00 09:30 PRISTINA (6Y) 1234567 15:10 15:40
1234567 12:00 12:30 PRISTINA (6Y) 1234567 18:00 18:30
1234567 06:00 07:25 ROME (AZ) 1234567 10:00 11:25
1234567 12:05 13:30 ROME (AZ) 1234567 22:00 23:25
1–3–––– 07:30 08:55 ROME (LZ) 1–3–––– 10:00 11:30
–2–4–67 12:10 13:35 ROME (LZ) –2–4–67 14:40 16:10
––––5–– 17:00 18:25 ROME (LZ) ––––5–– 19:45 21:00
1–––––– 05:00 06:20 ROME (LV) 1–––––– 07:30 09:00
––3––6– 09:00 10:20 ROME (LV) ––3––6– 11:30 13:00
–2––––– 03:45 06:35 SOFIA (FB) 1–––––– 17:30 18:40
––––5–– 11:20 13:59 SOFIA (FB) –––4––– 21:10 22:15
–––––6– 12:10 14:10 STUTTGART (LZ) –––––6– 15:50 17:50
1–3–5–– 13:55 15:55 TURIN (LV) 1–3–5–– 16:55 18:55
––––––7 09:00 11:00 TURIN (LV) ––––––7 12:00 14:00
–2––––– 07:10 09:00 TURIN (LZ) –2––––– 10:00 11:50
––––––7 18:10 20:00 TURIN (LZ) –––––6– 21:00 22:50
1–3–5–– 05:00 06:35 VIENNA (OS) –2–4–6– 22:15 23:55
1234567 14:20 16:00 VIENNA (OS) 1234567 10:50 12:25
1–––5–– 12:10 14:10 ZURICH (LZ) 1–––5–– 15:50 17:50
––––5–– 13:45 15:45 ZURICH (LV) –––––6– 16:30 18:30
–––4––– 16:45 18:45 ZURICH (LV) –––4––– 19:30 21:30
This schedule is valid until 27 March 2010, but al ways check flight times before departure.
Airline codes: JP = Adria Airways; A3 = Aegean; LV = Albanian Airlines; AZ = Alitalia; OS = Austrian Airlines; LZ = Belle Air;
BA = British Airways; FB = Bulgarian Airlines; LH = Lufthansa; MA = Malev ; OP = Ol ympic Air ; 6Y = Tafa Air;
TK = Turkish Airlines.
Flight schedule
42
GETTING AROUND
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
LRS Center Durrës highway, km 2, tel. +355 69 208
55 79, info@lrscenter.com, www.lrscenter.com. Land
Rovers for rent.
Lumani F-5, Rr. Abdi Toptani, Torre Drin/+355 68 409
58 75, info_ab@lumanienterprise.com, www.lumanien-
terprise.com. QOpen 08:00 - 20:00. Closed Sun.
Noshi Rent a Car D/E-3, Rr. Durrësit 79, tel. +355 4
240 03 00/+355 69 203 78 24, reservations@noshi.
al, www.noshi.al. Budget rental of Chevrolet, Opel, Hyundai
and Mitsubishi cars. Small cars from €100 per weekend. At
time of writing, Facebook fans got 10% off for rentals shorter
than a week. QOpen 08:00 - 19:00, Sat, Sun 09:00 - 17:00.
Sixt E-3, Rr. Kavajës 116, tel. +355 4 225 90 20,
www.e-sixt.com. Also at the airport (tel. +355 69 206 85
00). QOpen 08:00 - 17:00, Sat 08:00 - 14:00. Closed Sun.
Tirana Car Rentals (TCR) I-4, Rr. Abdyl Frasheri, P.
11, Sh. 4, tel. +355 4 224 05 11/+355 69 205 10 72,
info@tirana-car-rentals.com, www.tirana-car-rentals.
com. Local car rental agency with offices in various cities.
QOpen 08:00 - 19:00, Sat 08:00 - 16:00, Sun 08:00 - 13:00.
Public transport
Tirana has a few bus lines, marked on the map in this
guide. A ticket costs 30 lek per ride regardless of dis-
tance, to be paid to the conductor on board. Buses run
every 6-15 minutes between 05:00 and 22:00. The days
of dilapidated old state buses conking out in the middle
of the road are over - Tirana has a fleet of privately-run
buses, dipped liberally in advertising.
Car rental
Lack of parking space, signs and general discipline makes
driving in Tirana adventurous, but despite the apparent
chaos traffic doesn’t really move very fast. When parking,
beware of Tirana’s new and effective tow-trucks. The
only central parking garage can be found below the Vesa
Center on Rruga Abdyl Frashëri. Petrol costs about 130 lek
per litre, diesel 125 lek per litre.
Renting a car costs from around €45 per day for the
cheapest model. The agencies have desks at the airport,
but these are often only manned on demand, so inform
them in advance. Make sure you have the agency helpline
number and a good map before setting off.
Avis H-5, Blv. Dëshmorët e Kombit, Rogner Europapark
Hotel, tel. +355 4 223 50 11, fax +355 4 227 19 60,
avisa@avis.al, www.avis.al. Avis operates a fleet of Opel
and Chevrolet vehicles. Also at the airport. QOpen 08:30 -
19:00, Sun 08:30 - 14:00. Also at Hotel Sheraton (tel. 26 63
89/068 20 55 806, open 08:30 - 18:30, Sun 08:30 - 14:00)
and the airport (tel. 068 20 55 807). A
Europcar E-5, Rr. Durrësit 61, tel. +355 4 222 78 88/+355
68 209 39 22, fax +355 4 224 65 11, europcar@abissnet.
com, www.europcar.com. QOpen 08:00 - 18:00. Closed Sun.
Hertz E-4, Sheshi Skenderbeg, Tirana International
Hotel, tel. +355 4 225 50 28/+355 68 205 87 75,
hertz@albaniaonline.net, www.hertz.com. QOpen 08:00
- 19:00, Sat 08:00 - 16:00. Closed Sun. Also at the airport,
open 08:00 - 19:00, Sat, Sun 08:00 - 16:00.
From Tirana to First-last bus + frequency, or times Duration Price Departs from:
BAJRAM CURRI 06:00-14:00 6 hrs 1000 lek Zogu i Zi
BERAT 06:30-18:00, twice hourl y 2 hrs 400 lek Nëshërak / 21 Dhjetori
DURRËS 06:00-19:00, twice hourl y 40 min 150 lek Train station
ELBASAN 07:00-17:00 twice hourl y 1.5 hrs 300 lek Qemal Stafa Stadium, Rruga Elbasanit
FIER 06:00-17:00, twice hourl y 2 hrs 400 lek Nëshërak / 21 Dhjetori
GJIROKASTRA 05:00-18:30 4 hrs 800 lek Nëshërak / 21 Dhjetori
PESHKOPI 06:00-14:00 5 hrs 800 lek Laprak, one traffic light beyond Zogu I Zi
POGRADEC 07:00-16:00 hourl y 3 hrs 500 lek Qemal Stafa Stadium
KORCA 07:00-16:00 hourl y 4 hrs 600 lek Qemal Stafa Stadium
KRUJA 07:00, 10:00, 12:00, 15:00, 18:00 45 min 150 lek Zogu i Zi
PERMET 06:30, 14:00 4 hrs 500 lek Nëshërak
SARANDA 04:00, 05:15, 07:00, 08:30,
09:30, 16:00, 22:00
7 hrs 1200 lek Nëshërak
SHKODRA 07:00-16:00, hourl y 2 hrs 300 lek Train station / Zogu i ZI
KUKES 06:00-16:00 2 hrs 8000 lek Zogu i Zi
VLORA 05:30-16:30, twice hourl y 3 hrs 500 lek Nëshërak / 21 Dhjetori
Approximate times onl y, inform locall y for more details. For Himare and the Riviera coast, change buses at Vlora.
Furgon (minibus) schedule
From Tirana To Tirana
Departure Arrival City Dep. Arr. Days Company From Price (one way)
15:30 06:30 ATHENS 08:00 20:00 1––456– Interlines Bl v Zog I €25
04:00 19:00 ATHENS 09:00 21:00 –23–––7 Interlines Bl v Zog I €25
08:00 20:00 ATHENS 20:00 08:00 1234567 Drita Museum €35
18:00 05:00 PEJA 06:00 17:00 1234567 Sondor Museum €20
18:00 05:00 PRISTINA 06:00 17:00 1234567 Sondor Museum €20
18:00 05:00 PRISTINA 06:00 17:00 1234567 Monopol Museum €20
18:00 06:00 PRISTINA 06:00 17:00 1234567 Drita Museum €20
08:00 19:00 THESSALONIKI 19:00 08:00 1234567 Drita Museum €25
18:00 05:00 SKOPJE 18:00 05:00 1–3–5–– Sondor Museum €20
21:00 05:00 TETOVO 21:00 05:00 1234567 Sondor Museum €20
Schedule correct at time of publishing. Check all times before travelling.
International bus schedule
44
GETTING AROUND
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
Trains
Albania’s railway network is basic and slow, and has no
services to neighbouring countries. Unless you’re a train
fan, taking buses are faster and more comfortable, though
the run to Durrës is perfectly bearable.
Train station B-4, Blv. Zogu I, tel. +355 4 225 10 94.
Tirana’s train station is a basic metal and concrete shed next
to the dusty Durrës bus parking lot. Tickets can be bought just
before departure. There’s no left luggage office.
Travel agents
Tirana’s travel agents can arrange everything from plane
tickets to hotel bookings, car rental and tours.
Albania Experience J-5, Sheshi Italia, Sheraton Hotel,
tel./fax +355 4 227 20 55, alexperience@albaniaonline.
net, www.albania-experience.al. Guided city tours, day-
trips to Apolonia, Berat, Durrës, Kruja and other destinations,
and plane tickets. AE can also book top-end Tirana hotels at
big discounts. QOpen 08:30 - 19:00, Sat 08:30 - 17:00.
Closed Sun. A
Albania Holidays Rr. Sami Frasheri, Pall. 20, Apt.8,
tel./fax +355 4 223 54 98, tel. +355 4 223 56 88, www.
albania-holidays.com. Runs the www.albania-hotel.com
hotel booking website.
Albtours H-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit, tel. +355 4
225 33 43, fax +355 4 225 33 42, albtours@albaniaon-
line.net. Near the Sky Tower, and also at Rr. Mine Peza 102.
QOpen 08:00 - 20:00. Closed Sun.
ATHS E-3, Rr. Mine Peza 102, tel. +355 4 223 24
24. Al so at Bl v. Zogu 1, Veve Center. QOpen 08:00 -
21:00.
Gulliver OK D-4, Rr. Ismail Qemali 34/1, tel. +355 4
222 76 26/+355 67 203 44 04 (airport), info@gulliver-
ok.com, www.gulliver-ok.com. Travel agent with offices
in Tirana’s city centre and airport; also runs an agency and
the local tourism office in Korça. QOpen 08:00 - 20:00.
Closed Sun.
Magic Tours D-4, Blv. Zogu I, 72, Veve Business Center,
tel./fax +355 4 222 89 87, magictours@albmail.com.
QOpen 08:00 - 20:00. Closed Sun.
Outdoor Albania H-5/6, Rr. Elbasanit 85, Tirana
Backpacker Hostel, tel./fax +355 4 222 71 21,
Inf o@outdooralbania.com, www.outdooralbania.
com. Tail or-made tours wi th acti vi ti es such as trekking,
mountai n bi ki ng, raf ti ng, kayaki ng, mountai neeri ng,
paragliding and 4WD trips. Daytrips in the mountains
near Tirana too. In winter, acti vi ti es are limi ted to snow-
shoeing and hiking. See al so their booking si te www.
travel-tirana.com.
Taxis
Taxis are a useful form of transport in Tirana, and after 22:00,
they’re the only game in town. Several companies now use
metres and can print receipts; our experience so far is that
drivers do not have to be reminded to use them. Rates start
at 300 lek for the first 2km (sufficient for most city centre
trips) and 95 lek/km after that (count on paying 500 lek for
a ride to the outskirts). Between 22:00 and 07:00 the flagfall
is 350 lek. Few drivers speak English, so it’s a good idea to
write down the address, or to call someone who can explain.
ATEX (Airport Express Taxi) , tel. +355 4 223 34
19/+355 68 204 95 98, www.atex.al. Taxis to/from the
airport for 2,000 lek, or 2,500 lek between 21:00 and 07:00.
Online booking (in Albanian) possible.
Radio Taxi , tel. +355 4 24 44 44/+355 68 222 56 57.
Tirana Taxi , tel. +355 68 212 55 75.
Tourist information
In 2009, Tirana went from zero to two tourism information
centres.
TIA Tourist Information Point TIA, tel. +355 4 238 49
80, www.tirana-airport.com. A handy tourist information
kiosk in the airport arrivals hall, with Tirana In Your Pocket
guides, maps, providing answers to questions about Tirana
and Albania. QOpen 09:00 - 19:00.
Tourist Information Office (Zyra e Informacionit
Turistik) E-4, Rr. Ded Gjo Luli, tel. +355 4 222 33 13,
infotourism@tirana.gov.al, www.albaniantourism.com.
The city’s tourist information centre is right behind the Na-
tional Museum. Drop by to get information about Tirana and
copies of Tirana In Your Pocket.
aeroplane avion
ferry traget
airport aeroport
car veture, makinë
train tren
bus autobus
station (train, bus) stacion (tren, autobus)
Is it far? A është Iarg?
left majtas
right djathas
where am I? ku jam?
Travel terms
Old habits die hard, old Albanian habits in particular.
Take the currency, the lek. In 1964 and 1991, a zero
was cut from the currency and new banknotes and coins
introduced to make the numbers easier to handle. But
still, you’ll get sometimes get quoted amounts in old leks
in shops, so you’re told to pay 1000 lek rather than 100.
This is not to rip you off – it’s just an old habit that’s just
as comfy as those awful slippers you wear at home, and
even if you do put down ten times the amount necessary,
you’ll get the right change. Even though all the signs and
price tags in shops are new lek, not all Albanian minds
have made the transition.
Old habits - new leks
From Tirana To Tirana
Dep. Arr. City Dep. Arr. Price
05:55 06:53 DURRES 06:10 07:10 70 lek
07:30 08:32 DURRES 08:45 09:46 70 lek
08:30 09:28 DURRES 09:50 10:49 70 lek
14:10 15:07 DURRES 13:00 14:01 70 lek
14:45 15:42 DURRES 15:50 17:01 70 lek
16:15 17:12 DURRES 17:30 18:30 70 lek
20:00 20:57 DURRES 18:35 19:35 70 lek
05:55 09:38 ELBASAN 06:00 09:46 190 lek
14:10 17:55 ELBASAN 15:55 19:35 190 lek
05:55 12:32 POGRADEC 12:50 19:35 295 lek
13:15 16:42 SHKODER 05:55 09:21 145 lek
14:45 19:52 VLORE 05:40 10:49 250 lek
Timetable and prices correct at time of publication; check
all details in advance.
Train schedule
46
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
LANGUAGE
Albanian is an Indo-European language with a 36-letter
alphabet; like the country itself it is one of a kind. There are
distant links with Romanian, and many words on loan from
Turkish, Greek and Slavic.
An i ncreasi ng number of Al bani ans speaks a forei gn
language: Italian is extremely widespread (thanks to satellite
dishes and emigration), English is catching on fast, and many
Albanians in the south understand Greek.
Pronunciation
a as in father
c as in pizza
ç as in church
dh as in that
e as in set
ë as in term
gj as in dodge
i as in machine
j as in year
II as in still
nj as in union
q as show
r as in rope
rr is a trilled r
x as in judge
Niceties & Necessities
Yes Po
No Jo
Good Mirë
Please Ju lutem
Thank you Faleminderit
Sorry! Më vjen keq!
Good morning Mirëmëngjes
Good day Mirdita
Hello ç’kemi
Good night Natën e mirë
Good luck with your work! Punë e mbarë!
Cheers! Gëzuar!
All the best! Gjithë të mirat!
Excuse me! Më falni!
How are you? Si jeni?
Practicalities
When? Kur?
Where? Ku?
Who? Kush?
Why? Pse?
What? Çfarë?
I have... Kam...
I am... Jam...
What’s your name? Si quheni?
My name is... Quhem...
I’m from... Une jam nga...
...UK ...Anglia
...USA ...Amerika
...Germany ...Gjermania
I don’t understand Nuk kuptoj
I don’t speak Albanian Nuk flas shqip
A ticket, please Një biletë, ju lutem
How much does this cost? Sa kushton?
Signs
Open Hapur
Closed Mbyllur
Entrance Hyrje
Exit Dalje
Push Shtyj
Pull Terheq
Numbers
0 zero
1 një
2 dy
3 tre
4 katër
5 pesë
6 gjashtë
7 shtatë
8 tetë
9 nentë
10 dhjetë
20 njëzet
50 pesëdhjetë
100 njëqind
1000 njëmijë
Days
Monday E Hënë
Tuesday E Martë
Wednesday E Mërkurë
Thursday E Enjte
Friday E Premte
Saturday E Shtunë
Sunday E Dielë
Months
January Janar
February Shkurt
March Mars
April Prill
May Maj
June Qershor
July Korrik
August Gusht
September Shtator
October Tetor
November Nëntor
December Dhjetor
Time
Now Tani
Later Më vonë
Today Sot
Tomorrow Nesër
Yesterday Dje
1930s Italian-buil t ministries on Skanderbeg Square
48
SHOPPING
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
49
SHOPPING
January - June 2010 tirana.inyourpocket.com
Pirro Souvenirs I-4, Rr. Abdyl Frashëri, tel. +355 4
222 55 87. A good selection of handicrafts and souvenirs;
Albanian flags,keyrings and T-shirts, and must-have mugs
depicting Enver Hoxha, King Zog and Mother Teresa among
others. Also on Rr.e Durrësit. QOpen 09:00 - 21:00.
Rreli-Erebara E-4, Rr. Ded Gjo Luli, tel. +355 4 222
12 82. Tradi tional folk costumes from all over Albania,
as well as wood, bronze and sil ver souvenirs, potter y,
ceramic wares and antiques. QOpen 08:00 - 21:00, Sun
08:00 - 14:00.
Speciality shops
La Casa del Habano J-5, Sheshi Italia, Sheraton mall,
tel. +355 68 416 63 37, www.kalimancaribe.com. A
smoker's oasis inside the Sheraton Mall, this is the onl y
place in the country to buy, and try, quali ty Cuban cigars.
Brands on sale include Habanos, Cohiba and Monte Cristo,
and there's a range of deluxe smokers' accessories too. Puff
away on your new purchase in style at the small whiskey bar.
QOpen 10:00 - 22:00.
Vini & Food J-5, Sheshi Italia, Sheraton mall. Quality
Italian and Albanian wines. QOpen 09:30 - 21:30.
Supermarkets
Conad G-5, Blv. Bajram Curri, Galeria mall, tel. +355
4 227 01 74. A supermarket chain that (incredibl y) ships
everything from Italy - even the fruit and veg. There's a decent
selection meats and cheeses. Also at (I-3) Rr. A.Z. Çajupi.
QOpen 09:00 - 22:00.
Euromax Tirana-Durrës highway, km6, QTU centre.
Tirana's largest supermarket, inside the QTU mall on the
outskirts of town. A handy 24-hour ci ty-centre Euromax
Express can be found at Rr. Abdyl Frashëri (I-4) in the QTU
City mall. QOpen 08:30 - 21:00.
Kedi J-5, Sheshi Italia, Sheraton Plaza mall. A convenient,
small supermarket inside the Sheraton mall.
The ladies love Tirana. You may be surprised, but the city
is actually a great shopping destination. The city centre
is small and you can easily walk everywhere, and without
exception the staff is friendly and reasonably competent.
Especially shoe shopping is good; they're cheap (around
30% less than in other European cities), most are of Italian
quality, and there's great variety. For clothes the story is
slightly different, as not all international brands are repre-
sented yet. Shopping is still best in the established areas
such as in the bllok district and along Rruga Myslym Shyri
where you'll find many boutiques; you're more likely to find
bargains and groovy stuff there than in the malls.
Books
Tirana has a number of shops selling English literature, but
the selection isn't great so bring fodder from abroad if you
want to read something specific while you're here. Foreign
magazines and newspapers can be found at the Adrion
shop or at their stands in the Xheko Imperial and Sheraton
hotel (at the Albanian Experience travel agency office). The
Rogner hotel lobby bar has foreign newspapers available
for reading.
Adrion International Books E-4, Sheshi Skënderbej,
Palace of Culture, tel. +355 4 222 62 56, books@
adrionltd.com, www.adrionltd.com. The best selection
of books on Albania (or on anything else) in English. Lots of
magazines as well. Also at the airport, in both the main hall
and departures. QOpen 09:00 - 20:00.
Corona E-4, Sheshi Skenderbej, Tirana International
Hotel, tel. +35 69 217 73 05. The hotel gi ft shop has
a good selection of newspapers, magazines and books
on Albania, and souvenirs too. QOpen 09:30 - 20:30.
Closed Sun.
Friend's Book House G-3, Rr. Sami Frashëri, tel. +355
4 226 67 77, friendbookhouse@yahoo.com. More café
than bookstore, the collection here is mainl y Albanian though
some English titles can be found too. QOpen 24 hrs.
International Book Shop E-6, Rr. Hoxha Tahsim 1, Ste-
phen Center. Books, newspapers and magazines, including
some on religious themes. QOpen 08:00 - 20:00. Closed Sat.
Libraria Albania H-3, Rr. Sami Frashëri, tel. +355 4 227
17 49, www.albaniabook.com. A local bookshop with a
selection of English-language magazines and Albania-related
books. QOpen 08:00 - 20:00. Closed Sun.
DIY
Praktiker Durrës highway km4, Pranë Urë Kamëz, tel.
+355 4 238 84 50, www.praktiker.al. Albania's first large
DIY market also stocks useful things for travellers; there's
also an ATM and a Gregory's Coffee outlet. A free shuttle
bus runs regularl y from the main square between 07:00 and
21:30. QOpen 08:30 - 21:00.
Fashion
Benetton G-5, Blv. Bajram Curri, Galeria mall. Italian fash-
ion for both sexes. QOpen 08:30 - 20:30, Sun 09:00 - 14:00.
Blue Fly G-3, Rr. Myslym Shyri 80. Fashionable shoe
boutique.
Byclass I-4, Rr. Abdyl Frashëri, Vesa Center, tel. +355
4 227 88 10, www.byclassonline.com. A large boutique
with Italian Tod and Hogan shoes plus assorted accessories,
on the first floor of the Vesa Center mall. QOpen 10:30 -
21:00. Closed Sun.
Comptoir de Paris Sheshi Italia, Sheraton Mall, tel.
+355 68 202 26 84. Expensi ve brand-name fashion for
men, women and children.
Elisse G-3, Rr. Myslym Shyri, tel. +355 4 227 43 56.
Elegant shoes. QOpen 09:00 - 21:00.
Estel E-3, Rr. Kavajës, tel. +355 68 20 34 473.
I talian fashi on for men and women. Near the corner wi th
Rr. Kont Urani. Q Open 08:00 - 13:00, 16:00 - 20:00.
Cl osed Sun.
Felu H-4, Rr. Pjetër Bogdani 32, tel. +355 68 401 04
00. Colourful, quality Italian 'junior footwear', as well as kids'
clothing. QOpen 09:00 - 20:00.
Firenze D-4, Blv. Zogu I, 72, tel. +355 4 224 04 41. A
good array of women's and men's clothes, and real Versace
ties. High prices and quali ty. QOpen 08:30 - 20:00, Sun
09:00 - 14:00. A
Glamour I-4, Rr. Abdyl Frashëri 4, tel. +355 68 206
01 76. Italian fashion at reasonable prices. QOpen 09:00
- 20:00. Closed Sun.
Il Cammino G-3, Rr. Myslym Shyri 64. Shoe boutique.
Also on Rr. Kavajës 20 and Rr. Abdyl Frashëri 6.
Nino Vitali F/G-3, Rr. Myslym Shyri, tel. +355 4 227
44 70. Q Open 09:00-14:30, 18:00-21:30.
Pierre Cardin E-4, Rr. Ded Gjo Luli. The latest PC fashion.
QOpen 08:30 - 20:00. Closed Sun.
Much to the delight of locals and foreigners alike, Tirana
has been enriched with several malls or smaller shopping
galleries over the past two years. The launch of the QTU
centre along the Durres highway in 2005 was a revolution
in itself - the complex is large, has a good supermarket,
underground parking and a free shuttle bus. In early
2006 the Galeria mall raised the standard and QTU hit
back with a small new mall in the bllok area. Albania’s
first proper and large mall will open in 2010.
Casa Italia Tirana-Durrës highway, tel. +355 48
86 05 12. A large compl ex wi th various mid-range
shop outlets.
CityPark Tirana Tirana-Durrës highway, km15,
www.citypark-al.com. Opening in 2010, Albania’s
largest shopping centre will have some 170 shops, a
supermarket, food court, a ‘seven star’ hotel, a skating
rink, Cartoonland, and entertainment. Beside the turnoff
to the airport.
Galeria Mall G-5, Blv. Bajram Curri, tel. +355 4
225 41 00. Housed in the European Trade Centre build-
ing behind the pyramid, the Galeria mall has 50 shops,
bars and cafés in a pleasantl y air-conditioned four-floor
complex. There’s a supermarket on the ground floor.
QOpen 09:00 - 20:00.
QTU (Qendra Tr egtar e Univer s) Tirana-
Durrës highway, km 6, tel. (+355) 38 01 00, fax
(+355) 380 101, www.qtu-al.com. West of town
al ong the Durrës hi ghway, the QTU shopping centre
has a bar, restaurants, a supermarket, el ectroni cs
store and more. A free shuttl e bus runs between
the Nati onal Museum and Uni vers ever y 20-30 min-
utes. The small QTU Ci ty mall can be found on Rr.
Abdyl Frashëri. Q Open 09:00-21:00, 09:00-22:00
in summer. A
Sheraton Plaza J-5, Sheshi Italia. The mall attached
to the Sheraton hotel has a café, a food court, a good little
supermarket and several upmarket shops.
Vesa Center I-4, Rr. Abdyl Frashëri 5, tel. +355 4
222 78 816, www.vesacenter.com. Upmarket glass-
fronted building with several chic boutiques, a café, jazz
club, restaurant, spa and apartments. QOpen 09:00
- 21:00, Sun 17:00 - 21:00.
Shopping centres
New expat arrivals and any other stray foreigners that
find themselves wandering Tirana are welcome to mingle
with Tirana’s small but active group of expats.
King House Dinner Night. Every Friday, there’s an
informal Tirana expat dinner at King House, from 19:30 till
late. King House serves food for those who are hungry, or
just drinks for those who aren’t. All are welcome to drop by.
Tirana Dinner Club. Every Wednesday, a group of expats
chooses a different restaurant to eat at. Send an email to
tiranadinner@gmail.com to get on the mailing list.
Tirana Hash. Every Saturday the family-friendly Tirana
Hash (10-70 Albanians and expats) meets at 11:30 for a
relaxed to strenuous walk or run somewhere near Tirana,
inevitably followed by relaxed to strenuous drinking and
late lunch session at the Chicken Shack or elsewhere.
See www.tiranahash.com for more information. Everybody
welcome, transport for the car-less is arranged on the spot.
Tirana International Women’s Group. Join the TWIG
ladies for their monthl y meetings, chari ty events and
acti vi ti es including yoga, painting, bowling and tea
sessions. See http://sites.google.com/site/twigtirana/
home for more information or email to twi gboard@
gmail.com.
Expat activities
Flowers
Flower shop J-5, Sheshi Italia, tel. +355 68 206 05 68.
Flowers and ceramics. QOpen 08:00 - 18:00. Closed Sun.
Garden Joy H-5/6, Rr. Elbasanit, tel. +355 4 237 41
46. The owner learned flower arranging in Greece and does
it well. QOpen 09:00 - 21:00.
Kaktus I-4, Rr. Perlat Rexhepi, tel. +355 69 204 96 54.
Imported flowers and luxury bouquets. QOpen 07:00 - 21:00.
Merkom E-3, Rr. Kavajës, tel. +355 4 225 47 70. Next
to Samsung. Also delivers flowers. QOpen 08:00 - 20:30.
Natyra H-5/6, Rr. Elbasanit, tel. +355 4 223 06 16.
Flowers from Greece arri ve three times a week. Good for
colourful, custom-made bouquets. QOpen 09:00 - 19:00.
Souvenirs & Gifts
The best souvenir shopping is north of Tirana in Kruja,
where shop windows are full of jewelry, antiques and
knickknacks. If you don't have time to make the trek
there, check these shops in Tirana. There are also some
kiosks selling Albania mugs, plastic guns, dolls and bunker
ashtrays at the southern end of Rr. Barrikadave.
Albapost F-4, Rr. Reshit Çollaku, fax +355 4 223 21
33, alpost@icc.al.eu.org. Philatelic shop of the Albanian
postal service, selling recent commemorati ves. QOpen
08:00 - 16:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Aromë Indie G-3, Rr. Myslym Shyri 31, tel. +355 4 226
58 23. Oriental gifts and art, and colonial furniture. On the
corner of Rruga Islam Alla.
Art Forever G/H-4, Rr. Vaso Pasha 99, tel. +355 4 224
63 86. If you're looking for folk costumes, antique chests, wood
carvings, or old books, check out this one-man show. Near the
corner with Blv. Bajram Curri. QOpen 10:30 - 21:00. Closed Sun.
Five Senses I-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit 30, tel.
+355 4 223 53 53. A home interior shop with imported
pottery, vases and glassware. In the alley next to the Da
Shang Hai restaurant. QOpen 10:00 - 20:30. Closed Sun.
Le Futur H-4, Rr. Vaso Pasha, tel. +355 4 223 27 68,
www.lefutur.al. Dozens of crazy novelty gifts, between 300-
4,000 lek. Everything from desktop rocket launch installations
to wallets made from South African licence plates. QOpen
09:00 - 22:00, Sun 10:00 - 21:00.
Lleshi E-3, Rr. Durrësit, tel. +355 4 226 30 30. Albanian
folk costumes, handknit vests, men's fel t hats, dolls in folk
dress, rugs with national motifs. Near Rr. Asim Vokshi. Q
Open 08:00 - 14:00, 16:00 - 20:00. Closed Sun.
Shops at Tirana's lovel y chaotic market area
50
MAIL & PHONES
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
51
DIRECTORY
January - June 2010 tirana.inyourpocket.com
Post
Central Post office F-4, Rr. Çameria, tel. +355 4 222
62 82, www.postashqiptare.al. QOpen 08:00 - 20:00.
(08:00 - 13:00 for parcels).
Express mail
The safest though not the cheapest way to send valuable
or urgent items.
Albanian Courier Tirana-Durrës highway, Salloni
Mazda, tel. +355 4 235 79 76, info@albaniancourier.
com, www.albaniancourier.al. QOpen 09:00 - 19:00,
Sat 09:00 - 14:00. Closed Sun.
DHL E-4, Rr. Ded Gjo Luli 6, tel. +355 4 223 39 32, fax
+355 4 225 72 94, al.customer@dhl.com, www.dhl.
com. QOpen 08:00 - 18:00, Sat 08:00 - 12:00. Closed Sun.
FedEx F-6, Blv. Zhan D'Ark, tel. +355 4 225 32 03,
fax +355 4 225 36 30, fedex@icc-al.org, www.fedex.
com. QOpen 08:30 - 16:00, Sat 08:30 - 12:00. Closed Sun.
TNT E-4, Rr. Mine Peza 2, tel. +355 4 223 49 14, fax
+355 4 223 54 89, ilirjan@icc.al.eu.org, www.tnt.com.
QOpen 08:00 - 17:00. Closed Sun.
UPS H-4, Rr. Ismail Qemali 32/1, Pall. Teuta, tel. +355
4 225 97 42, fax +355 4 225 97 43, aloperations@
unitrans.com.al, www.ups.com.
Telephone calls
International calls Dial the international access number
(00), the country code, the area code and the subscriber’s
number. Call 12 for international directory assistance.
National calls For calls outside Tirana, dial 0, the city code
and the subscriber’s number. Call 14 for domestic directory
assistance. Local calls: Tirana numbers have seven digits,
all starting with a 2 or a 3.
Calling Albania from abroad Dial the country code (355),
then the city code (Tirana’s is 4). To call a mobile phone in
Albania from abroad, dial 355, then drop the 0 and dial 38.
Mobile phones
Three rather pricey providers are active in Albania. AMC
numbers start with 068, Vodafone numbers with 069 and
Eagle Mobile numbers with 067. Eagle has gone from a
dodgy start to great success within a year, and is challenging
its rival’s prices; prepaid customers yet have to notice lower
prices though. You can easily purchase pre-paid SIM cards
for around 600 lek at the providers’ shops; you’ll need ID and
a local address (which can be that of your hotel). Recharge
cards are widely available across the country. National rates
for pre-paid calls are between 30-55 lek per minute.
AMC (Albanian Mobile Communications) G/H-4,
Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit, Sky Tower, tel. +355 4 227
50 00, www.amc.al. QOpen 08:30 - 21:00.
Eagle Mobile H-4, Rr. Vaso Pasha, tel. +355 4 222
78 12, www.eaglemobile.al. Also at Rr. Myslim Shyri 6
and at the airport,
Vodafone H-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit 5, tel. +355
4 228 32 01/+355 69 222 01 11, www.vodafone.al.
Also at the airport. QOpen 08:30 - 21:00.
Berat 32
Durrës 52
Elbasan 54
Fier 34
Gjirokastra 84
Kavaja 554
Korça 82
Kruja 511
Kuçova 33
Kukës 24
Laç 30
Lezha 36
Librazhdi 353
Lushnjë 35
Peqin 512
Përmet 813
Peshkopi 373
Pogradec 832
Saranda 85
Shijak 571
Shkodra 22
Tepelena 814
Tirana 4
Vlora 47
Albanian telephone codes
Postal rates for postcards/letters (under 20gr) are:
Albania 20 lek
Europe 40 lek
Elsewhere 60 lek
Post rates
Public telephones
Publ i c phones are easi l y found; tel ephone cards are
available at post offices. 50 unit cards cost 560 lek; 100
units 980 lek; 200 units 1800 lek. New cards should be
wrapped in clear plastic. People on the street also sell
cards; beware that you’ll likel y be paying more. I f you
don’t plan to talk away a whole card, you can rent one
from the ‘businessmen’ near the phone boxes for about
15-20 lek per unit.
Internet cafés
Free wifi is increasingly common in city-centre cafés, res-
taurants and hotel lobbies such as the Rogner's. It's also
available free at the airport. In the internet cafés listed below,
expect to pay 100 lek per hour for internet access (and plenty
of noise from little boys playing Counterstrike).
Global I-4, Rr. Perlat Rexhepi 13, tel. +355 4 225 63
06. Surf for 80 lek per hour. QOpen 24 hrs.
Top-Net H-4, Rr. Vaso Pasha, tel. +355 67 219 03 39.
Basement internet café with helpful staff. Q Open 24hrs.
Internet providers
ABCOM Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit, Kompleksi Green
Park, Kulla 2, Kati II, tel. +355 4 450 01 39, info@
abcom.al, www.abcom.al. Broadband internet, data
transmission, VPN, wi fi, hosting, e-mail solutions, digi tal
cable TV and telephony services. QOpen 09:00 - 17:00.
Closed Sun.
Abissnet Rr. Ismail Qemali, tel. +355 4 225 60 01, fax
+355 4 225 60 02, info@abissnet.al, www.abissnet.al.
Ada Net Rr. Dervish Hima 1, tel. +355 4 225 16 33,
www.adanet.net.
Albania Online Rr. Donika Kastrioti 4, tel. +355 4 225
11 22, fax +355 4 225 11 33, www.albaniaonline.net.
Albania 355
Australia 61
Austria 43
Belarus 375
Belgium 32
Bulgaria 359
Croatia 385
Czech Rep. 420
Denmark 45
Estonia 372
Finland 358
France 33
Germany 49
Greece 30
Hungary 36
Ireland 353
Israel 972
Italy 39
Japan 81
Kosovo 381
Latvia 371
Lithuania 370
Moldova 373
Montenegro 382
Netherlands 31
Norway 47
Poland 48
Portugal 351
Romania 40
Russia 7
Serbia 381
Slovakia 421
Slovenia 386
Spain 34
Sweden 46
Switzerland 41
Turkey 90
UK 44
Ukraine 380
USA 1
Country codes
From forei gn representations to hi gh-finance, from
dentists to Ameri can li brari es: the Tirana In Your
Pocket directory is your one stop shop for names and
numbers. Find more listings on the tirana.inyourpock-
et.com websi te.
Advertising, PR & Events
Iceberg Communications I-4, Rr. Perlat Rexhepi, Pall.
Edil al-it, Zyra 1, tel./fax +355 4 226 76 81, tel. +355 69
207 67 69, office@icebergcommunication.com, www.
icebergcommunication.com. Publicity, PR and events.
Ogilvy H-4, Rr. Him Kolli, Pall 10 katesh, Kati 1, tel./
fax +355 4 224 75 33, nfo@ogilvyal.com, www.ogil-
vyal.com.
Tirana Events Agency Sheshi Zogu i Zi, Pall. e
Trebickës, Shk. 1, tel. +355 68 406 69 00, fax +355
4 224 75 77, info@tiranaeventsagency.com, www.
tiranaeventsagency.com. Conferences, events and other
business services.
Banks
Alpha Credit Bank Rr. e Kavajes, G-Kam Center, tel.
+355 4 227 85 00, fax +355 4 222 14 48, marketing.
albania@alpha.gr, www.alphabank.al. QOpen 09:00 -
15:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Banka Popullore - Société Générale Group Blv.
Dëshmorët e Kombit, Twin Towers, Kulla 1, Kati 9, tel.
+355 4 228 04 42, fax +355 4 228 04 41, bp.info@
socgen.com, www.bpopullore.com.
BKT (Banka Kombetare Tregtare) Bul. Zhan D'Ark,
tel. +355 4 225 09 55, fax +355 4 225 09 56, tsan@
bkt.com.al, www.bkt.com.al. QOpen 08:00 - 17:00.
Closed Sat, Sun.
Emporiki Bank Albania Rr. e Kavajës 59, Tirana Tower,
tel. +355 4 225 87 55, fax +355 4 224 09 95, headof-
fice@emporiki.com.al, www.emporiki.com.al. QOpen
08:30 - 16:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Intesa Sanpaolo Bank Rr. Ismail Qemali 27, tel.
+355 4 227 60 00, fax +355 4 224 87 62, info@intesa-
sanpaolobank.al, www.intesasanpaolobank.al. QOpen
09:00 - 15:30. Closed Sat, Sun.
National Bank of Greece Rr e Durresit, Godina
Comfort, tel. +355 4 228 00 00, fax +355 4 223 36
13, nbgalbania@icc-al.org, www.nbg.gr. QOpen 09:00
- 15:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
ProCredit Bank I-3, Rr. Sami Frasheri, tel. +355 4 223
34 96, fax +355 4 227 12 76, info@procreditbank.com.
al, www.procreditbank.com.al. At the southern end of the
street. QOpen 08:30 - 17:00, Sat 08:30 - 13:00. Closed Sun.
Raiffeisen Bank Blv. Bajram Curri, ETC, tel. +355 4
222 45 40, fax +355 4 224 79 12, info@raiffeisen.al,
www.raiffeisen.al. QOpen 08:30 - 15:30, Sat 09:00 -
12:30. Closed Sun.
Tirana Bank Blv. Zogu I, 55/1, tel. +355 4 223 34
41, fax +355 4 223 34 17, www.tiranabank.al. QOpen
08:00 - 15:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Bowling
Blur (Qendra Argetuese Blur) Lunder, tel. +355 48
810 132/+355 69 207 90 72, info@blur-al.com, www.
blur-al.com. An entertainment centre along the road to
Elbasan with UV-lit bowling, a restaurant, bumper cars and
bouncy castles. Q PLEBK
Spare Time G-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit, Taiwan.
Several bowling lanes on the two lower floors of the Tai wan
complex. You pay 250 lek per person per game, 350 lek
after 18:00.
BEYOND COMMUNI CATI ON
ICEBERG COMMUNICATION
Rr. "Perlat Rexhepi", Pall."Edil-al", Nr. 1
Tirana, Albania
Tel.&Fax: +355 4 2267681
Mob: +355 69 20 62050
contact@icebergcommunication.com
www.icebergcommunication.com
52
DIRECTORY
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
Emergency numbers:
Police 129, Fire 128
Business services
ACMS (Albanian Center for Management Ser-
vices) H-5, Rr. Gjon Pali II, 11/1, tel. +355 4 225 56
55/+355 4 225 76 05, fax +355 4 22719 60, info@
cmsalbania.com, www.cmsalbania.com. Training, execu-
tive search, consulting, auditing and other business services.
Albanian Business Network Rr.Sami Frasheri, tel.
+355 68 385 95 50, contact@al-bn.com, www.al-bn.
com. A networking organisation and business club for pro-
fessionals, businesses and investors interested in Albania.
National Registration Centre (Qendra Kombëtare e
Regjistrimit) Rr. Ismail Qemali, tel. +355 4 225 00 66, fax
+355 4 225 55 32, info@qkr.gov.al, www.qkr.gov.al. The
NRC is the one-stop-shop for business registrations in Albania.
QOpen 08:30 - 14:00, Fri 08:30 - 13:30. Closed Sat, Sun.
Chambers of Commerce
American Chamber of Commerce H-4, Blv. Dësh-
morët e 4 Shkurtit, Sky Tower 11/3, tel. +355 4 225
97 79, fax +355 4 223 53 50, info@amcham.com.al,
www.amcham.com.al.
British Chamber of Commerce & Industry Blv. Petro
Nini Luarasi 58, tel. +355 4 234 10 20, fax +355 4 237
98 85, info@abcci.com, www.abcci.com.
Tirana Chamber of Commerce & Industry E-3, Rr.
Kavajës 6, tel. +355 4 223 02 83, fax +355 4 222 79
97, www.cci.gov.al.
Hospitals & Clinics
Clinics do not usually take patients outside office hours.
For emergencies, go to the American Hospital or to the
Civilian Hospital (northeast of the centre on Rr. Dibrës).
ABC Clinic D-5, Rr. Qemal Stafa 260, tel. +355 4 223 41
05/+355 68 260 04 05, office@abcalbania.org, www.
abcalbania.org. Christian-run, English-speaking clinic. QO-
pen 09:00 - 13:00, Tue, Thu 09:00 - 17:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
American Hospital (Spitali Amerikan) Laprake, tel.
+355 4 235 75 35, www.spitaliamerikan.com. A new and
modern hospital along the Durrës highway, with international
staff and a good English-language website.
DSF Medical Centre Rr. Irfan Tomini Nr.5-1, tel.
+355 4 223 27 99. Q Open 08:00 - 14:00, 16:00 - 20:00.
Closed Sat, Sun.
Luigi Monti Clinic E-3, Rr. Kavajës 120, tel. +355 4
222 39 06, fax +355 4 223 11 25, www.unixkm.al. Part
of the Catholic Diagnostic Center. QOpen 07:30 - 13:30/
15:00-19:00, Sat 07:30 - 13:30. Closed Sun. Open 08:00 -
14:00, 16:00 - 19:00.
Marie Stopes Clinic Rr. Tef ta Tashko Koço 10,
tel. +355 4 224 10 18, mstopes@icc-al.org, www.
mariestopesalbania.com. Famil y planning clinic providing
safe, comprehensi ve reproducti ve heal thcare and educa-
tion in a country where contraception and abortion were
illegal until 1991. QOpen 08:00 - 18:00, Sat 08:00 - 12:00.
Closed Sun.
Orthodox Clinic Rr. Dibres 159, tel. +355 4 236 09
25/+355 4 238 22 10, fax +355 4 237 48 04, klinika-
orthodhokse@yahoo.com. QOpen 08:00 - 20:00, Sat
08:00 - 13:00. Closed Sun.
Computers
Computer & Copier System (CCS) I-3, Rr. Sulejman
Delvina, tel. +355 4 225 90 04, fax +355 4 223 55 77,
info@ccs-albania.com, www.ccs-albania.com. Sells PCs,
copy machines, software and hardware. QOpen 08:30 -
17:00, Fri 08:30 - 16:00, Sat 08:00 - 13:30. Closed Sun.
Infosoft Systems F-5, Rr. Murat Toptani, Gjergji Cen-
tre, tel. +355 4 225 11 80, fax +355 4 223 29 90, www.
infosoftgroup.com.al. Hardware, software, service provider.
QOpen 08:00 - 20:00, Sat 08:00 - 13:00. Closed Sun.
Dentists
In Albanian, 'dental clinic' is 'klinika dentare'. Easy. Now
floss.
Dervishi F-1, Rr. Muhamet Gjollesha, Blloku Vasil
Shanto, P. 3, Shk. 2, Ap. 3. Q Open 08:30 - 14:00, 16:00
- 20:00, Sat 08:00 - 13:00. Closed Sun.
Ledismile Dental Clinic Rr. Irfan Tomini, tel. +355 4
232 07 72/+355 69 406 60 00, ledismile@yahoo.com.
QOpen 09:00 - 13:00/ 15:00-19:00. Closed Sun.
Tirana Centre G-3, Rr. Myslym Shyri, tel. +355 4 225
74 46/+355 4 223 15 64. Near Albanian Telecom. QOpen
08:00 - 19:00. Closed Sun.
UFO Clinic F-2, Rr. Kavajës,Pallati 3, Shk 7, tel. +355 4
224 00 28, fax +355 4 224 16 87. Who wouldn't like their
dental work done by Martians? Behind the Central Bank build-
ing. QOpen 08:00 - 18:00, Sat 08:00 - 14:00. Closed Sun.
Dry cleaners
Fast Clean D-4, Rr. Komuna e Parisit, tel. +355 4 223
74 14. QOpen 07:00 - 22:00. Closed Sun.
Pastrim Kimik S&M I-3, Rr. Sami Frashëri, tel. +355 4
224 66 50/+355 68 224 30 51. The best dry-cleaning in
Tirana. Fast service, good prices. Below the ProCredit Bank.
QOpen 08:00 - 20:00. Closed Sat.
Embassies
Many of Tirana's embassies and consulates can be found near
Rruga Skenderbeg, and in the area just east of the stadium.
It's highly advisable to phone in advance to check the opening
times or to make an appointment. The opening times listed
here refer to the working hours of the visa/visitor departments.
Austria E/F-2, Rr. Frederik Shiroka 3, tel. +355 4 227
48 55, fax +355 4 223 3140, tirana-ob@bmeia.gv.at.
QOpen 10:00 - 12:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Bulgaria E-2, Rr. Skenderbej 12, tel. +355 4 223 31 55,
fax +355 4 223 22 72, bgemb-alb@interalb.net. QOpen
08:30 - 15:00. Closed Tue, Thu, Sat, Sun.
China E-2, Rr. Skenderbej 57, tel. +355 4 223 23 85,
fax +355 4 223 31 59, chinaemb_al@mfa.gov.cn. QOpen
08:30 - 16:30. Closed Sun.
Croatia F-5, Rr. Abdyl Topani, Torre Drin centre, tel.
+355 4 222 83 90, fax +355 4 223 05 78, croembassy@
albaniaonline.net. QOpen 08:30 - 16:30. Closed Sat, Sun.
Czech Republic E-2, Rr. Skenderbej 10, tel. +355 4
223 40 04/+355 4 223 21 17, fax +355 4 223 21 59,
tirana@emassy.mzv.cz, www.mzv.cz/tirana. QOpen
09:00 - 16:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Denmark H/I-4, Rr. Nikolla Tupe 1, Kati 4, Ap. 4, tel. +355
4 228 06 00, fax +355 4 228 06 30, tiaamb@um.dk, www.
ambtirana.um.dk. QOpen 09:00 - 12:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Egypt E-2, Rr. Skenderbej 1, tel. +355 4 223 30 22, fax
+355 4 223 22 95, egyemb@albaniaonline.net. QOpen
09:00 - 16:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
The power
that helps the future grow
54
DIRECTORY
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
France E-2, Rr. Skenderbej 14, tel. +355 4 223 42 50,
fax +355 4 223 44 42, ambafrance.tr@adanet.com.al,
www.ambafrance-al.org. Q Open 09:00-13:00, 14:30-
17:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Germany E-2, Rr. Skenderbej 8, tel. +355 4 227 45 05,
fax +355 4 223 34 97, info@tira.diplo.de, www.tirana.
diplo.de. QOpen 08:00 - 17:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Greece E/F-2, Rr. Frederik Shiroka 3, tel. +355 4 227
46 44, fax +355 4 223 41 40, gremb.tir@mfa.gr, www.
greekembassy.al. Consulates in Gjirokastra and Korça.
QOpen 08:30 - 16:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Holy See (Vatican) D-4, Rr. Durrësit 13, tel. +355 4
223 35 16, fax +355 4 223 20 01, nunapal@icc-al.org.
QOpen 09:00 - 13:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Hungary E-2, Rr. Skenderbej 16, tel. +355 4 223 22 38,
fax +355 4 222 54 11, mission.tia@kum.hu, www.mfa.
gov.hu/emb/tirana. QOpen 08:00 - 16:30. Closed Sat, Sun.
Iran H-5, Rr. Mustafa Matohiti 20, tel. +355 4 222 76 98,
fax +355 4 223 04 09. QOpen 08:00 - 16:30. Closed Sat, Sun.
Italy H-5, Rr. Gjon Pali 2, tel. +355 4 227 59 00, fax
+355 4 227 49 00, segreteriambasciata.tirana@esteri.
it, www.ambtirana.esteri.it. Consulates in Vlora and Shko-
dra. QOpen 08:00 - 18:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Macedonia F-2, Rr. Kavajës 116, tel. +3554 4 223 09
09, fax +355 4 223 25 14, tirana@mfa.gov.mk. QOpen
08:30 - 16:30. Closed Sat, Sun.
Netherlands H-5, Rr. Asim Zeneli 10, tel. +355 4 224
08 28, fax +355 4 223 27 23, tir@minbuza.nl, www.mfa.
nl/tir. QOpen 08:00 - 17:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Poland D-2, Rr. Durrësit 123, tel. +355 4 223 41 90, fax
+355 4 223 33 64, polemb@albaniaonline.net. QOpen
08.15 - 16.15. Closed Sat, Sun.
Romania H-5, Rr. Themistokli Germenji 1, tel. +355 4
225 60 71, fax +355 4 225 60 72, roemb@adanet.com.
al. QOpen 08:00 - 16:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Russia H-5, Rr. Asim Zeneli 5, tel. +355 4 225 60 40,
fax +355 4 225 60 46, rusemb@albmail.com. QOpen .
Closed Tue, Thu, Sat, Sun. Open Mon, Wed, Fri 08:00-12:00.
Closed Tue, Thu, Sat, Sun.
Saudi Arabia D-3, Rr. Kavajës 116, tel. +355 4 224
83 06, fax +355 4 222 99 82, embasaudarab@alba-
niaonline.net. QOpen 09:00 - 15:00, Fri 09:00 - 13:00.
Closed Sat, Sun.
Serbia H-4, Rr. Donika Kastrioti 9/1, tel. +355 4 223 20
91, fax +355 4 223 20 89, ambatira@icc-al.org, www.
tirana.mfa.gov.yu. QOpen 10:00 - 12:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Spain D-2, Rr. Skenderbej 43, tel. +355 4 227 49 60,
fax +355 4 222 53 83, emb.tirana@mae.es. QOpen
09:30 - 14:00,16:00-19:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
Sweden H-6, Rr. Pjeter Budi 76, tel. +355 4 238 06
50, fax +355 4 238 06 60, swedishoffice.tirana@sida.
se. QOpen 10:00 - 12:00. Closed Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat, Sun.
Switzerland H-6, Rr. Elbasanit 81, tel. +355 4 223 48
88, fax +355 4 223 48 89, tir.vertretung@eda.admin.
ch, www.eda.admin.ch/tirana. QOpen 09:00 - 11:00.
Closed Sat, Sun.
Turkey I-6, Rr. Elbasanit 65, tel. +355 4 238 03 50,
fax +355 4 234 77 67, turkemb@atnet.al, www.tirana.
be.mfa.gov.tr. QOpen 09:00 - 15:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
United Kingdom E-2, Rr. Skenderbeg 12, tel. +355 4
223 49 73, fax +355 4 224 76 97, enquiries.tirana@
fco.gov.uk, www.ukinalbania.fco.gov.uk. QOpen 08:30
- 17:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
United Kingdom Rr. Skënderbej 12, tel. +355 4 223
49 73, fax +355 4 224 76 97, www.ukinalbania.fco.gov.
uk. QOpen 09:00 - 11:30. Closed Sat, Sun.
United States I-6, Rr. Elbasanit 103, tel. +355 4 224
72 85, fax +355 4 223 22 22, http://tirana.usembassy.
gov. Visi ts by appointment onl y. QOpen 14:00 - 16:00.
Closed Sat, Sun.
Governmental organisations
Albania's governmental organisations.
Albanian Development Fund Rr. Sami Frashëri 10,
tel. +355 4 223 55 97, fax +355 4 223 48 85, adf@
albaniandf.org, www.albaniandf.org. QOpen 08:00 -
16:30, Fri 08:00 - 14:30.
Albinvest Blv. Gjergj Fishta, Pall. Shallvareve, tel. +355
4 225 28 86, fax +355 4 222 23 41, info@albinvest.gov.
al, www.albinvest.gov.al.
Institute of Statistics Blv. Zhan D'Ark 3, tel. +355 4
222 24 11, fax +355 4 222 83 00, inuria@instat.gov.al,
www.instat.gov.al. Publishes a yearly report called Albania
in Figures (Shqipëria në Shifra). QOpen 08:00 - 16:30, Fri
08:00 - 14:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
KESH Rr. Vasil Shanto, tel. +355 4 225 97 29, fax
+355 4 223 20 46, www.kesh.com.al. National electricity
corporation. QOpen 08:00 - 16:30.
Insurance companies
Insig Rr.Dibres, Nr. 92, tel. +355 4 225 68 12, fax +355
4 223 41 80, marrja@insig.com.al.
InterAlbanian I-3, Rr. Sulejman Delvina, Zayed Busi-
ness Center, tel. +355 4 225 48 35, www.interalbanian.
com.
Sigal Blv. Zog I, No. 1, tel. +355 4 225 34 07/8, fax
+355 4 225 02 20, info@sigal.com.al, www.sigal.com.
al. QOpen 08:00 - 20:00, Sat 09:00 - 12:00.
Sigma Rr.Komuna Parisit,POB 1714, tel. +355 4 225
82 54, fax +355 4 225 82 53, info@sigma-al.com, www.
sigma-al.com. QOpen 08.00 - 16.00. Closed Sat, Sun.
International schools
Ecole Viktor Hygo Rr. Tre Vellezrit Kondi, tel. +355 4
237 17 25/+355 69 20 61 677, info@ecole-vhugo.com,
www.ecole-vhugo.com.
Memorial International School Rr. Durrësit, tel. +355
4 223 73 79, info@mistedu.net, www.mistedu.com.
Tirana International School (TIS) Rr. Tre Vellezrit
Kondi, tel. +355 4 236 52 39, tirana@qsi.org, www.
qsiweb.org/alb.
Language courses
International Language Centre D-5, Rr. Luigj
Gurakuqi 31/1, tel. +355 4 223 61 41, ilc@albania-
online.net. Albanian l essons for beginners to advanced
students.
Lincoln Center H-4, Rr. Qemal Stafa 184, tel./fax +355
4 223 08 80, info@lincoln.org.al, www.lincoln.org.al.
Albanian for foreigners as well as English, German, Spanish
and computer courses. Inside Enver Hoxha's old vila.
Lawyers & Consul tants
Boga & Associates Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit, Green
Park, tel. +355 4 225 10 50, fax +355 4 225 10 55,
www.bogalaw.com.
Deloitte F-5, Rr. Murat Toptani, Eurocol Center, tel.
+355 4 227 79 20, fax +355 4 227 79 90, www.de-
loitte.com/al.
Kalo & Associates E-3, Rr. Kavajës, Qendra e Busines-
sit G-KAM, tel. +355 4 223 35 32, fax +355 4 222 47
27, info@kalo-attorneys.com, www.kalo-attorneys.com.
KPMG H-4, Blv. Dëshmorët e Kombit, Twin Tower 1, tel.
+355 4 227 45 24, fax +355 4 223 55 34, al-office@
kpmg.com, www.kpmg.al.
56
DIRECTORY
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
TBI Law Firm D-4, Blv. Zog I, Veve Business Center,
tel./fax +355 4 222 89 62, ketrin.topciu@tbi-al.com,
www.tbi-al.com.
Tonucci & Partners H-4, Rr. Abdi Toptani, Torre Drini,
tel. +355 4 225 07 11, fax +355 4 225 07 13, tirana@
tonucci.it, www.tonucci.it.
Beauty & Wellness
Ardi Hair Fashion H-3, Rr. Vaso Pasha 7, tel. +355 4
227 09 67/+355 68 20 26 118, ardian.borova@yahoo.
com. Professional ladies and gents salon with ammonia-free
hair colouring. QOpen 09:00 - 19:00. Closed Sun.
Da Shanghai Health Centre I-3, Rr. Perlat Rexhepi
16/6, tel. +355 4 222 49 27/+355 4 69 247 62 71.
Chinese doctors perform therapeutic foot (45 mins 1500
lek) and body (60 mins 3,000 lek) massages, acupuncture
and herbal baths (15 mins 500 lek). QOpen 09:00 - 13:00,
15:30-21:30. Closed Sun.
Genci C-5, Rr. Elbasanit, Pall 2, Shk 9, Ap 70, tel. +355
4 223 07 22/+355 68 206 16 00. Men's hairdresser.
QOpen 11:00 - 20:00. Closed Sun.
Krehëri i artë i Edlirës G-6, Rr. Mihal Grameno, tel.
+355 4 223 39 50. Women's hairdresser. QOpen 08:00
- 21:00. Closed Sun.
Velur Spa G-3, Rr. Sami Frashëri, Metropol Center, tel.
+355 4 222 25 50/+355 69 203 29 00, info@velurspa.
com, www.velurspa.com. A smart 'Spa & Relax' centre on
the lower floor of the Metropol building. There's a hamam
(Turkish bath) and you can undergo massage, hydrotherapy,
waxing, facials, manicure/pedicure, and skin treatments with
Thai mud, herbs and even chocolate. QOpen 09:00 - 23:00,
Sun 14:00 - 22:00.
Vesa Spa & Fitness I-4, Rr. Abdyl Frashëri 5, Vesa
Center, tel. +355 4 227 88 20, spa@vesacenter.com,
www.vesacenter.com. A large spa centre on the top
floor of the Vesa Center. The 'technogym' offers workouts
with street views and there's a sauna, solarium, hair salon,
various therapies, massage, and beauty treatments for men
and women. Knowledgeable English-speaking staff available.
Gym subscriptions from €200/month. QOpen 10:00 - 21:00.
Closed Sun.
Wang Yan Massage I-3, Rr. Perlat Rexhepi, tel. +355
4 241 58 70. Various kinds of massage (therapeutic, foot,
keep-fit) from 2,500 lek per hour, as well as acupuncture and
herb treatments. In a second-floor apartment; look for the
'Chinese massage' sign. QOpen 09:00 - 20:00.
Ministries
Ministry of Economy, Commerce and Energy Blv.
Dëshmorët e Kombit 2, tel. +355 4 222 27 82, www.
mete.gov.al.
Ministry of Education and Science Rr. Durrësit 23,
tel. +355 4 222 63 07, fax +355 4 223 07 47, www.
mash.gov.al.
Ministry of Finance Blv. Dëshmorët e Kombit 4, tel.
+355 4 226 76 54, fax +355 4 222 84 94, secretary.
minister@minfin.gov.al, www.minfin.gov.al.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs Blv. Gjergj Fishta 6, tel.
+355 4 236 40 90, fax +355 4 236 20 84, ministri@mfa.
gov.al, www.mfa.gov.al.
Ministry of Interior Affairs Sheshi Skenderbej 3, tel./
fax +355 4 224 71 55, mb@moi.gov.al, www.moi.gov.al.
Ministry of Justice Blv. Zogu I, tel. +355 4 225 93
88, fax +355 4 223 45 60, mail@justice.gov.al, www.
justice.gov.al.
Municipality of Tirana Blv. Dëshmorët e Kombit,
tel. +355 4 222 66 29, fax +355 4 222 84 30, www.
tirana.gov.al.
Prime Minister's Office Blv. Dëshmorët e Kombit 1,
tel. +355 4 225 65 61, ext. 440, fax +3554 223 48 18,
info@km.gov.al, www.keshilliministrave.al.
International organisations
Albania's non-governmental and international organisa-
tions.
EBRD (European Bank for Reconstruction and
Development) Rr. Abdi Toptani, Torre Drini, tel. +355
4 223 28 98, fax +355 4 223 05 80, alickola@ebrd.
com, www.ebrd.com.
European Commision Delegation Rr. Papa Gjon
Pali II, ABA Business Center, 17th floor, tel. +355 4
222 83 20, fax +355 4 223 07 52, delegation-albania@
ec.europa.eu, www.delalb.ec.europa.eu.
GTZ (German Projects Office) Rr. Skënderbeg
21/1, tel. +355 4 223 04 14, fax +355 4 223 34 97,
gtz-albanien@gtz.de, www.gtz.de.
IMF (International Monetary Fund) Bulevardi Dësh-
morët e Kombit, Twin Tower 1, Suite 5-4,, tel. +355 4
228 04 00, fax +355 4 228 04 01, www.imf.org/tirana.
OSCE (Organisation for Security and Cooperation
in Europe) Sheshi Italia, Sheraton Hotel, tel. +355 4
223 59 96, fax +355 4 224 86 84, pm-al@osce.org,
www.osce.org/albania.
SNV (Dutch Projects Office) Rr. Dëshmorët e 4
Shkurtit, tel. +355 4 225 58 00, fax +355 4 225 58 01,
balkans@snvworld.org, www.snvbalkans.org.
Soros Foundation (NOSA) Rr. Qemal Stafa, tel. +355
4 223 46 21, fax +355 4 223 58 56, www.soros.al.
Transparency International Bul. Gjergj Fishta, tel.
+355 4 226 74 57, info@tia.al, www.tia.al.
UNDP (United Nations Development Program) Rr.
Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit 35, tel. +355 4 223 31 22, fax
+355 4 223 20 75, www.undp.org.al.
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ThE ANSWEF
ACMS - Albanian Center for Manaueuent Services llc.
Address. Fr. 0jon Fali ll lforuer Fr. Leke üukaujiniì 11/1/5, Tirana, Albania
Fhone. 00 355 1 2 255 ë55 Đ Fax. 00 355 1 2 271 9ë0
e-uail. info@cusalbania.cou Đ web. www.cusalbania.cou
The recentl y renovated statue of the unknown soldier
58
DIRECTORY
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for
Refugees) Rr. Donika Kastrioti 4, tel. +355 4 222
84 74, fax +355 4 222 84 92, albti@unhcr.org, www.
unhcr.org.
UNICEF (United Nations Children's Fund) Rr. Skën-
derbej, Godina Volkswagen, Kati 3, tel. +355 4 227 33
35, fax +355 4 224 37 75, www.unicef.org.
USAID (United States Aid) Rr. Elbasanit 103, tel.
+355 4 224 72 85, fax +355 4 223 22 22, www.usaid.
gov.
WHO (World Health Organisation) Rr.Themistokli
Germenji, Pall. 10, tel./fax +355 4 226 61 62, office@
who-albania.org, www.un.org.al.
World Bank Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit 34, tel. +355 4
228 06 50, fax +355 4 224 05 90, clampart@worldbank.
org, www.world.bank.org.al.
Notaries
These offices provide notary work and legal assistance.
Some also do written translations into and from English,
French, German, Italian, Greek and Turkish.
Agim Robo H-4, Rr. Ismail Qemali 27/1, tel. +355 4
224 88 40, agimrobo@hotmail.com.
Dhimitra Qarri G-3, Blv. Bajram Curri, Pallatet 1Maji,
Shk. 3, Ap 24, tel. +355 4 225 12 00/+355 69 209 55
71, vqarri@yahoo.com.
Fatime Metaj D-3, Rr. Durrësit 118, Shk. 1, Ap. 1, tel.
+355 4 223 98 72, fatimemetaj@yahoo.com.
Pharmacies
Farmacia 7-17 C-4, Blv. Zogu I, tel. +355 4 222 22 41.
Next to the Tirana Bank. QOpen 24hrs.
Farmatech D-5, Rr. Barrikadave, tel. +355 4 223 65
84, info@farmatech.net. Modern pharmacy, English spoken.
QOpen 08:30 - 22:00. Closed Sun.
Photography
A.Rreli C-4, Blv. Zogu I, 30/ Rr.Mine Peza Nr 1, tel.
+355 4 222 79 65/ 222 23 29/+355 68 20 29 675,
fotorreli@albmail.com. A chain of modern photo labs. Digital
developing too. QOpen 08:00 - 20:00, Sun 09:00 - 13:00,
17:00-21:30.
Ital Kumi H-4, Rr. Brigada VIII, 3/1, tel. +355 4 224
68 98/+355 69 202 03 60, loungebar042@gmail.com.
QOpen 07:00 - 02:00. Closed Sun.
Real estate
Albania Property Group Rr. Islam Alla, tel./fax +355
4 227 17 46, info@albaniapropertygroup.com, www.
albaniapropertygroup.com. Houses for sale and rent, land
sale and more. Offices in Tirana and Saranda.
Alb Property Rr. Dervish Hima, tel. +355 4 224 62 53,
info@alb-property.com, www.alb-property.com. Land,
buildings and apartments for sale and for rent.
Balkimo Sheshi Italia, Sheraton Hotel, tel. +355 4 226
63 94, fax +355 4 225 47 60, info@balkimo.com, www.
balkimo.com.
Century 21 Albania Rr. Dibrës, Pallati Aurora Kon-
struktion, tel. +355 4 225 05 99, fax +355 4 225 78
29, info@century21albania.com, www.century21al-
bania.com.
Colliers G/H-4, Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit, Sky Tower,
suite 141, tel. +355 4 240 04 70, fax +355 4 240 04 71,
albania@colliers.com, www.colliers.com.
Fresh Proper ty Albania Rr. Sami Frasheri, tel.
+355 69 293 69 16/+355 68 385 95 50, contact@
freshpropertyalbania.com, www.freshpropertyalba-
nia.com. Real estate agency and proper ty consul tants
based in Tirana and Saranda wi th proper t y for rent
and sal e there and in Vl ora. Al so af tersal es ser vi ce,
furni ture packs, proper ty management and investment
oppor tuni ti es.
Green Hours Rr. Abdi Kazani, P. Luarasi 2a, tel./
fax +355 4 223 28 44, info@greenhours.net, www.
greenhours.net. Specialises in building plots and agri-
cul tural land.
INF93 Rr. Luigj Gurakuqi 8, tel./fax +355 4 224 95 22,
inf93@abaniaonline.net, www.inf-93.com.
Real Estate Imobiliary Rr. Kavajës, Pall. 3, Shk. 7, Ap.
66, tel. +355 4 223 31 18, reale@icc.al.eu.org.
Translations
Fadil Metaj D-3, Rr. Durresit, Pall. 79, Shk. 4, Kati 1,
tel. +355 4 223 04 48, fmetaj2005@yahoo.com. Trans-
lates English to/from Albanian, Serbian, Croatian, Slovenian,
Macedonian, Bulgarian and Russian.
Tirana’s lake area is seeing fast growth, and a jumble
of new buildings has risen around the southern shores
and beside the zoo and botanical gardens. To avoid this
ad hoc growth also effecting the remaining empty area
beside the lake’s dam, the Rotterdam-based architec-
ture bureau MVRDV designed a rather spectacular
masterplan to extend the park in this area and to add
a high-quality and dense urban area along a new “Copa
Tirana’ lakeshore drive. The plan forsees a number of
large rectangular buildings to be placed at weird angles
in the area below the dam. Nicknamed the Tirana Rocks,
they are to be clad in local stone and will hold apart-
ments, shops, offices, a hotel and recreational facili-
ties. The dam is to become more pedestrian-friendly,
with benches along the whole lenght, and remains a
green corridor, linked to the third floor lobbies of the
new buildings by wooden walkways. South American
jacaranda trees, which flower bright purple for a month
every spring, are to planted throughout the area, and lit
up on sumer nights. Construction of the €600 million
project will start in 2010.
Tirana Rocks
© MVRDV
Full directory listings
can be found at
http://tirana.inyourpocket.com
4 Dëshmorët C-6
28 Nëntori F-4/5, E-5
Abdi Toptani F-4/5
Abdulla Keta D-5
Abdyl Frashëri I-3/4/5
Adem Kruja G-2
Ali Pashe Gucia C-5/6, D-6
Andon Zako Çajupi H-3
Asim Vokshi D-3/4
Asim Zeneli H-5/6
Bardhok Biba D-4
Barrikadave B/C-4, D-4/5
Beqir Luga E-6
Besim Imami F-2/3
Bilal Konxholli C-5/6
Bl v. Bajram Curri H-1 to G-6
Bl v. Dëshmorët e Kombit
F-4 to I-5
Bl v. Gjergj Fishta H-1 to G-4
Bl v. Zhan D’Ark G-5 to E-6
Bl v. Zogu I C/D/E-4
Bogdani E-3
Brigada VIII H-3/4
Çamëria F-3/4
Çerçiz Topulli C-4, D-5
Ded Gjo Luli E-4
Dervish Hatixhe D/C-4
Dervish Hima I-5/6
Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit
G/H/I/J-4
Dhimitër S. Shuteriqi J-1/2
Dibrës C/D-5, B5/6
Don Bosko B/C-2
Donika Kastrioti G/H-4
Dora D’Istria K/J-4
Durrësit D-2/3, E-3/4
Edit Durham E-2
Elbasanit G-5, H-5/6, I-6
Emin Duraku I-2, H-3
Fadil Rada I-2, H-3
Faik Konica I-6
Fatmir Haxhiu G-5
Frederik Shiroka F-1/2, E-2
Gjin Bue Shpata H/I-3
Gjin Kuqali I/J-3
Gjon Buzuku B/C-5
Gjon Muzaka E-2
Gjon Pali II G/H/I-5
Grigor Heba I-2, J-2/3
Hajdar Hidi E/F-3
Haki Mborja J-1
Halim Xhelo E-2
Haxhi Hysen Dalliu
D-3, C-3/4
Haxhi Sina C-6
Him Kolli F-3
Hoxhe Vokrri D-6
Hoxha Tahsim E/D-6
Ibrahim Dervishi I-1
Isa Boletini C/D-5
Islam Alla E/F/G-3
Ismail Qemali H-3/4/5
Jani Vreto E-5/6
Jeronim de Rada F-5
Jordan Misja A/B/C-3
Jul Varibova G-5
Justin Gadari E/F-2
Jusuf Vrioni I-2
K. Shijaku B/C-4
Kajo Karafili E-3/4
Karl Gega B-4
Kavajës F-1/2/3, E-3/4
Komuna e Parisit H-2/3, I-2
Kont Urani E-3
Kristaq Mema D-2/3
Lek Dukagjini I-5, J-4
Lidhja Prizrenit I/J-4
Street register
All Tirana streets below are prefexed
‘Rruga’ (Rr.); boulevards are listed as
‘Blv’, squares as ‘Sheshi’.
Liman Kaba J-2/3, K-2
Luigj Gurakuqi E-4/5
Mahmut Fortuzi B/C-4
Maliq Muço D-4
Margarita Tutulani J-3/4
Medar Shtylla I/J/K-2
Mehmet Brocaj D-3
Mihal Duri E-3
Mihal Grameno G-6
Mil to Tutulani I/J-3
Mine Peza C-2, D-2/3, E-3
Muhamet Gjollesha
D-1/2, E-1, F-1, G-1/2, H-2
Murat Toptani F-4/5
Musa Agolli B-5
Mustafa Lleshi G-6
Mustafa Matohiti G/H-5
Myrtezim Këlliçi E/F-5
Mysl ym Shyri G-2/3, F-3/4
Naim Frashëri E/F-2
Nasi Pavllo H/I-6
Nikolla Lena F-2
Nikolla Tupe I-3/4, H-4
Papa Kristo Negovani C-4
Perlat Rexhepi C-4
Petro Korçari I-1
Petro Nini Luarasi F-6
Pjetër Bogdani H-3/4
Pjetër Budi H-6
Prek Bibë Doda H-2
Presidenti George W. Bush
F-5
Prokop Myzeqari D-3
Punëtorët e Rilindjes
see Presidenti GWB
Qemal Guranjaku H-6
Qemal Stafa E-5, D-5/6
Ramzan Farka B-6
Reshit Çollaku F-4
Reshit Petrela B/C-4
Robert Shvare I-1
Sami Frashëri G-3 to J-4
Saraçëve D-5
Sermedin Said Toptani F-4
Shaqir Ofshafi C-5/6
Sheh Ahmet Pazari I-6
Shenasi Dishnica D/E-5
Sheshi 21 Dhjetori F-1
Sheshi Avni Rustemi E-5
Shesi Fan Noli E-5
Sheshi Italia I-5
Sheshi Nënë Tereza I-5
Sheshi Skënderbeg E/F-4
Sheshi Zogu i Zi C/D-2
Shyqyr Bërxolli E/F-3
Shyqyr Ishmi F-6
Siri Kodra B-4
Skënder Kosturi B/C-4
Skënderbeg D/E/F-2
Stavro Vinjau H/I-6
Sulejman Delvina H-2, I-2/3
Sulejman Pasha D-3/4, E-4
Tafaj C-5/6
Tefta Tashko Koço E-6
Thanas Ziko B-5/6, C-6
Themistokli Gërmenji H-5/6
Thimi Mitko E-6
Unaza C-2/3/4
V. Karapici E-6
V. Luarasi C-4/5, D-5
Vaso Pasha G/H/I/J-4
Vëllezërit Manastiri D-2
Viktor Eftimiu H-1, I-1/2
Xhezmi Delli E-2
Xhorxhi Martini E/F-5
Ymer Kurti I/J-3
Zenel Baboçi D-5
62
INDEX
Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.inyourpocket.com
1001 Netë 27
Albaniantrip 20
Alcora 32
Alpin 18
Ambasador 18
Amor 26
Apollonia 23
Arber 11
Archaeological Museum 35
Areela 18
Art Gallery 35
Artist Lounge 30
Ballkoni Daj tit 26
Bantia 23
Bardhe e Zi 30
Big Bite 25
Billionaire 25
Black Cave 39
Bonaparte 32
Botanical gardens 38
Briker 18
Brilant Antik 11
Broadway 14
Buda Bar 31
Buj tina Shqiptare 20
Bulevard Café 31
California 14
Carlsberg 23
Casa di Pasta 26
Cathedral of St. Paul 36
Catholic Church 36
Central Market 35
Charl’s Bistro 31
Chateau Linza 12
City 14
Clock Tower 36
Converse 31
Dafina 20
Daj ti Ekspres Cable Car 39
Daj ti Park 22
Da Shang Hai 24
Delikatesë 30
Diplomat 12
Diplomat Fashion 12
Doro City 14
Eder 14
El ysée 14
Endri 20
Enoteca Joan 32
Epër 7shme 30
Era 23
Et'hem Bey Mosque 37
Europa 14
Fan Noli Statue 38
Far East 24
Ferari 14
Firenze 14
Flares 31
Flex 31
Folie 34
Fortress of Justinian 37
Freddy's Hostel 21
Friend's Book House 30
Galeria Shijaku 37
Grand 11
Grand Park 38
Green House 12, 26
Gregory's Coffee 30
Guva e Qetë 18
Haxhiu 18
Hotel Airport Tirana 18
House of the Dervish
Khorosani 37
Il Cappricio di Zio Edi 27
Iliria 14
Il Pomodoro Food Court 25
Imagine 32
Irish Bar Tirana 34
Juna 30
Jurgen 18
Juvenilja Castelo 28
Kalaja 18
Kalaja e Petreles 27
King House 25
Kolonat 25
Kruja 14, 39
Kuki 31
La Cantinella 27
La Tavernetta 27
Living Room 31
Lollipop 34
London 25
Lugano 14
Lulishte 1 Maji 25
Magic Blue 28
Mai Tai Resort 22
Mamma Rosa 27
Martyrs' Cemetery 35
Meduza 31
Meg Klaus 18
Metropolitan 23
Mezuraj Museum 35
INDEX
Mimi 24
Miniri 16
Mojo 30
MonarC 12
MonarC Bar 31
Mondial 12
Mother Teresa statue 38
Mr. Chicken 25
Mrizi i Zanave 23
Napoli 27
National History Museum 36
Nëna Mbretereshë 28
Nirvana 16
Nobel 16
Noel 32
Noi Café 30
Oda 23
Orthodox Cathedral 36
Orthodox Church 36
Otium 26
Palma 16
Panorama 22
Papafingo 32
Parlamenti 18
Pastiçeri International 30
Patisserie Française 25
Pension Andrea 20
Pension Strazimi 21
Petrela Castle 39
Piazza 23
Pike Loti 18
Pirro Mani 27
Pyramid 35
Quo Vadis 30
Radio 32
Raum 34
Regency Casino 34
Rei Jazz Club 32
Republika 20
Rinia Park 38
Rock 'n Roll 32
Rockwood 32
Rogner Europapark 11
Royal 25
Rozafa 28
Sarajet 24
Savana 20
Serenata 24
Serendipity 26
Shang Hai 25
Sharm Club 34
Shëngjin Church Mosaic 36
Sheraton Tirana Hotel 11
Skanderbeg Square 35
Skanderbeg Statue 38
Sky Club 26
Sky Club Café 30
Sky Hotel 14
Sofra 28
Sofra e Ariut 28
Steakhouse 26
Steel wings 32
Stela 16
Stephen Center B&B 21
Stephen Center Café 30
Stylus Club Marriott 32
Swiss Chalet 28
Tanners' Bridge 37
Teqeja Dervish Hatixhe 37
Theranda 16
Tiki 32
Tirana Backpacker Hostel 1 22
Tirana Backpacker Hostel 2 22
Tirana International 12
Tirana Rock 32
Tomb of Kaplan Pasha 37
UAW Guesthouse 21
Unknown Partisan Statue 38
Venue Dance Club 34
Venue Park 22
Verzaci 18
Vesa Residence 21
Victoria 16
Vila 3 14
Vila 12 28
Vila 31 24
Vila Aeroport 18
Vila Bel vedere 16
Vila Ferdinand 26
Vila Logoreci 27
Vila Metropolitan 26
Vila Park 18
Vila Tafaj 18
Vila Verde 20
Villa Amsterdam 26
Vinum 23
Viva 24
Wine Spirit 32
Xheko Imperial 11
Yamato 27
Zero 42 34
Zoo 38
Grannies relaxing in the National Museum park
Come with us to discover Europe's last secret
Albania Experience
Tel +355 4 2 272 055
Fax +355 4 2 271 960
Mobile: 068 40 490 90
Email: alexperience@albaniaonline.net
www.albania-experience.al
Address: Sheshi Italia, Sheraton Tirana &Towers, Tirana, Albania
ο¸Ë ˼ÃÃÊ ÐÆ̗ÀËžÊ °¸Ä ÀŠǸÉÀʶ
·Î ®¡ ·Î ¦§¡ ·Î ¹½Á£

CONTENTS
www.inyourpocket.com

3

Contents
Arriving in Tirana
How to get here 5 6 8 9 10 11 23 30 31

Glossary
Tirana from A to Z

History
Occupations, liberations, damnations

Culture
Cinemas & theatre

Traditional dress
Delicately embroidered works of art

Where to stay
A good night’s sleep for €5, or €2530

Restaurants Located amidst government buildings and embassies in the heart of Tirana, this new complex is the capital’s only 5-star hotel and the unrivalled choice for international travelers and impeccable business events. Shops, bars and restaurants await you right outside in the Sheraton Plaza Shopping Mall, just moments from your room.
151 rooms, including 95 deluxe rooms, 55 suites and the Presidential Suite 50 Club rooms with exclusive access to the Club Lounge “Metropolitan” Restaurant offering Albanian and international cuisine “Infinity” Bar & Terrace Function rooms for over 500 guests Indoor and outdoor swimming pools Health club with fitness centre and sauna Shopping Mall with a variety of shops & cafés and a cinema “Il Pomodoro” Food Court located in the Shopping Mall
Sheshi Italia, Tirana, Albania Tel: +355 42 274707 Fax +355 42 274711 reservations.tirana@sheraton.com www.sheraton.com/tirana

From Albanian to Japanese, Tirana has it all

Cafés
Sip your kafe ekspres here

Palm trees conceal the Tirana International Hotel

Nightlife
Drink and dance the night away

What to see
Mosque, tower, horse

35 39 40 46 48 50 51

Around town
Mountains, caves, castles and towns

Getting around
Planes, buses, trains and cars

Language
Speak shqip

Shopping
Souvenirs, fashion and malls

Mail & Phones
Keeping in touch

Directory
From banks to real estate agents

Maps & Index
Selling persimmon fruit along the airport road

City map & Street register Index

60-61 62

tirana.inyourpocket.com

January - June 2010

4

FOREWORD
For once, Albania made all the right headlines in 2009. Foreign tourism boomed as backpackers and increasing numbers of cultural travellers discovered the country, and business was not as bad as it could have been, with the country registering one of the few positive growth rates in Europe. On the ground in Tirana, it’s been a busy year with plenty of new restaurants and hotels opening up, all of them reviewed in this new edition. Tirana In Your Pocket enjoyed growing popularity in 2009 too, and we’ve fattened the guide by 12 pages this issue. One exciting new story regards the building of the much-discussed Tirana Rocks project, several large blocks seemingly dropped on the lakeside in the city centre, which may well come to define Tirana’s new look (if they don’t run out of money first). See page 58 for the details. Our special feature this issue concerns Albania’s veritable treasure trove of traditional costumes. There are 300 different types of dress in this small country, and these beautiful costumes and items can be viewed at Tirana’s National Museum as well as at the private Spahiu collection; see page 10. Like everything in the Albania, Tirana In Your Pocket is continuously under construction and your comments and tips are welcomed. Add your personal review for any place you like (or hate) to our website, or write in to tirana@inyourpocket.com. About this guide - Lidhur me këtë udhëzues
The Tirana In Your Pocket city guide is the only dedicated English-language guidebook to Albania‘s capital, and is part of a Europe-wide series of acclaimed city guides. In Your Pocket guides are written for foreign travellers and residents, to provide honest, critical information that makes visiting the city easier for foreign visitors. As a private and commercial initiative, Tirana In Your Pocket has been written and researched by a team of local and foreign travel guide experts. The opinions in the guide are those of the writers, and are not in any way meant to glorify or denigrate the city, merely to point out the merits and shortcomings that we think foreign travellers should know about. Every guidebook has its faults, so we appreciate any information that would lead to improving the next issue. Emails can be sent to tirana@inyourpocket.com. Udhëzuesi i qytetit Tirana In Your Pocket (‚Tirana në xhepin tuaj‘) është udhëzuesi i vetëm në gjuhën angleze që i dedikohet kryeqytetit të Shqipërisë, dhe është pjesë e një sërë udhëzuesve të njohur të qyteteve në mbarë Evropën. Udhëzuesit in your pocket janë dizajnuar për udhëtarët e huaj dhe banorët, por thjeshtë që të sigurojnë informata të sinqerta kritike që e bëjnë vizitën në qytet më të lehtë për të sapoardhurit. Si një iniciative private komerciale, Tirana In Your Pocket është shkruar dhe hulumtuar nga një ekip i ekspertëve vendor dhe të huaj të udhëzuesve të udhëtimit. Mendimet në udhëzues vijnë nga ata, dhe në asnjë mënyrë nuk kanë për qëllim që të lavdërojnë apo denigrojnë qytetin, por thjeshtë që të tregojnë meritat dhe mangësitë të cilat ne mendojmë se udhëtarët e huaj duhet t‘i dinë. Çdo udhëzues i ka të metat e veta, prandaj ne do të çmonim çdo informatë që do të çonte në përmirësimin e botimit të ardhshëm. E-mailet mund të dërgohen në tirana@inyourpocket.com.

ARRIVING
By plane
Tirana’s gleaming Nënë Tereza (Mother Teresa) airport, 17km northwest of Tirana, is a 30-45 minute drive from the city centre. Beside the baggage carousel in arrivals there’s an ATM, a BKT currency exchange office with so-so rates and the airport’s tourism information desk. Buy a local SIM card at the Vodafone or Eagle Mobile shops. Ignore the taxi drivers harassing new arrivals, but take an official yellow airport taxi to the centre for 2000 lek, or 2500 lek at night. Alternatively, hop on the hourly Rinas Express airport bus (250 lek) to Skanderbeg Square, departing every hour between 08:00 and 19:00.

5

By bus
Tirana has skipped the ‘build a bus station’ stage of urban evolution, and buses drop off passengers at various points along the ring road; from there you’ll need a taxi or city bus to get to the centre.

By car
Driving to Albania is an option now that roads and safety have greatly improved - but don’t expect to get there quickly. Coming from Greece, expect long queues and grinding bureaucracy on both sides of the border. The Kakavija and Kapshtica crossings are open 24hrs; Qafë Boti near Konispol and Tre Urat near Permet open till 22:00. From Macedonia, Qafë Thanë is the main crossing, though the Tushemisht crossing near Pogradec is quieter, has beautiful scenery and few delays. Together with the Bllade crossing near Peshkopi they are all open till 22:00; the Gorica crossing near Lake Prespa is open till 19:00. From Kosovo, you can quickly cross over at Qafë Morina and Qafë Prush, from Montenegro at Han i Hotit and Muriqan.

By train
Albania has no international passenger trains. Weary rail arrivals from Shkodra, Durrës and Pogradec will find themselves deposited at Tirana’s garden shed train station, at the northern end of Blv. Zogu I. It’s a 15-20 minute walk down this boulevard to Skanderbeg Square, a short taxi ride or a hop on any bus heading that way from the bus stop across the street.

Europe In Your Pocket

By ferry
Arriving by ferry from Italy is perhaps the most relaxed way of entering the country. There are ferry lines from several Italian cities to the ports of Durrës, Shengjin and Vlora. Flying to Corfu and using the daily ferry to Saranda or the summertime hydrofoils to Saranda/Himara is often the cheapest way to reach South Albania (see www.ionian-cruises.com).

Cover story
The sleeve of a precious traditional costume is embroidered with ancient patterns. It’s part of the Spahiu Collection, Tirana’s foremost private collection of traditional Albanian wear. See page 10 for the full story.

Others about TIYP
“... by far the best coverage of Sofia, Belgrade and Tirana...” The Sun-Herald, Australia, September 7, 2008. “... the most comprehensive source of information about the Albanian capital that you’re likely to come across...” “Finding information about the region can still be difficult, but things have got a whole lot better with the launch of Shkodra In Your Pocket.” Balkanology.com, 2008 “...a full overview of sights, hotels, drinking and eating venues in and around Tirana.” Doing Business In Tirana, Tirana municipality, 2008 “We visited Tirana as an independent group. In Your Pocket has been an excellent help in providing us the information which we need. There are not any other companies that supply honest hotel, restaurant and nightlife info.” Greg Axon, United Kingdom, 4-2-2009 “You are great! Best city guide ever! Keep up the good work!” Igor Simac, 5-4-2009 “Loved your Tirana publication, it was very informative. I know officials read your publication and are sensitive to its message... maybe this will send them one: streets need to be cleaned up and made pedestrian friendly!” Carol Zachary, USA, 5-5-2009 “I’m eagerly waiting for the new Tirana and Skopje In Your Pocket guides!” Jonas Eklund, Sweden, 22-5-2009

Tourist information
Tirana’s new Tourist Information Centre is on Rruga Ded Gjo Luli, right behind the National History Museum. Drop by to get information about the city and copies of Tirana In Your Pocket. See p.44 for more information.

Tirana In Your Pocket © Albania Experience Sh.P.K Sheshi Italia, Sheraton Tirana Hotel & Towers 1430 Tirana, Albania Tel. +355 4 227 20 55 Fax +355 4 223 20 15 tirana@inyourpocket.com www.inyourpocket.com ISSN 1587-2378 Printing Evropa92 Kochani, Macedonia Published 10,000 copies, twice a year

Editorial Editorial management Rentapocket.com: Jeroen van Marle, Sco Fact-checking Rozana Malo, Aldo Merkoci, Silvia Çaushi Layout & Design Tomáš Haman Photos Rentapocket Cover photo Embroidered patterns on a traditional shirt © JvM The TIYP team would like to thank Glenda Pashko, Stavri Çifligu, Ikuko Fujimoto, Marta Karwat, Carol Zachary and our good friends at Avis for their support. Sales & Distribution Manager Alida Karakushi (alida.karakushi@inyourpocket.com, tel. +355 69 306 42 17) Publishers Gazmend Haxhia, Jeroen van Marle, Sco

Copyright notice
Text and photos copyright Tirana In Your Pocket 2006-2010. Maps copyright cartographer. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form, except brief extracts for the purpose of review, without written permission from the publisher and copyright owner. The brand name In Your Pocket is used under license from UAB In Your Pocket (Vokieciu 10-15, Vilnius, Lithuania tel. +370 5 212 29 76).

Editor’s note
The editorial content of In Your Pocket guides is independent from paid-for advertising. We welcome all readers‘ comments and suggestions. We have made every effort to ensure the accuracy of the information at the time of going to press and assume no responsibility for changes and errors.

It has been another great year for In Your Pocket. We now publish a record 57 guides and mini-guides across 22 European countries. We print more than four million In Your Pockets annually. In 2009 we launched new guides in Korca, Maribor, Bled, Portoroz, Sarajevo, Banja Luka, Brasov, Lviv and Odesa. In 2010 you can expect to see Prizren, Venice, Vienna and Glasgow - amongst others – Pocketed. We welcome enquiries from anyone who would like to take part in our Pocket Revolution, starting up an IYP. Send us an email to publisher@inyourpocket.com. We also want to find out how we can make our guides better, so please take five minutes to complete our online survey at inyourpocket.com/survey.

Tirana In Your Pocket

tirana.inyourpocket.com

tirana.inyourpocket.com

January - June 2010

Visas & Passports Citizens of the EU. People who still believe in travellers’ cheques can cash them at most banks at a fee and a long wait. Before you set off. going down by 10% on the euro and dollar in 2009 after years of stability. Other travellers need to get a visa from an Albanian embassy or consulate abroad before travelling to Albania. Despite the obvious advantages. like Bulgarians. Ohrid and Prespa. Be very careful where you walk . hundreds of thousands in Macedonia and Montenegro. Founded by dentists ROLAND ZHUKA and ELIONA PRIFTI as Albania's best dental polyclinic. eager to honk. Money The Albanian currency is the lek (plural leke). There is no longer an entry or departure tax. When asking for prices in daily life. IMPLANTATION. Albania is a bit larger than Wales or Maryland. it’s a pleasant little culture shock.mfa. though the chain-smoking policemen have done little to enforce the law. Getting health insurance that covers an airlift to another country in case of serious problems is a good idea. and an estimated two million in the United States. The exchange rate is: €1 = 135 lek.al. Albanians cluck. though your home bank may. 20. they overtake in corners at high speeds in their Mercedes as if they were still riding donkeys. Banknotes come in denominations of 200. bits of sharp metal sticking out of the concrete. Easily distracted. Your passport needs to be valid for six months after departing Albania.com .619. which is readily available and of excellent quality. Albanian ATMs do not charge for transactions. particularly in rural areas. no traffic enforcement and no traffic lights. ORTHODONTICS. covers 42 square kilometres and lies at 110m above sea level. The largest lakes are Shkodra. Australia. always using one or two hands for talking on the phone and smoking. or in more desperate cases honk madly. most other European countries. Drivers should have a fire extinguisher. Albania was the last country in Europe to have ATMs (bankomats) connected to the international grid.000 students of which nearly half attend the University of Tirana. only Party officials were allowed to own and drive around in cars and there were only about 600 cars in Albania. Much of this has changed. Italy and Canada.a tradition dating back to Illyrian times. Semani and Vjosa. hide valuables or leave them at home. but nowadays getting cash using your debit or credit card is no problem. Canada. 80km/hr outside these areas. Albanian cities can be very dusty. making PERLADENT one of the most prestigious dental polyclinics in Albania. The highest mountain is Mt. Up-to-date tetanus and hepatitis-B inoculations are recommended if you want to play it safe and are staying some length of time in Albania. If you insist on bringing along cash foreign currency. Geography At 28. Crime & Safety The well-being of honoured guests (you) is a major source of concern and pride for the locals . though refusing a client an ashtray is still seen as the graver sin.gov. especially in places where food is served. 500. Italy and Greece. you’re more likely to be overwhelmed with hospitality. garbage or dog shit. To attract attention. The money men waving wads of banknotes by the statue on Skanderbeg Square offer competitive rates and are generally honest. Bring a torch as even in cities it can be pitch dark at night away from the main streets. The maximum speed is 40km/hr in urban areas and villages. +355 67 20 777 55 Clinic 2: At the entrance to Shijak City Tel: +355 571 232 59 www. Switzerland. no driver’s license requirements. US$1 = 95 lek (December 2009). The city has some 30. beware the curious habit Albanians have of telling you the price in ‘old leks’ with an additional zero (so 100 lek becomes 1000 lek). When the restriction was lifted. Albanians remain the worst drivers in Europe. In 2009 efforts were stepped up. it’s a good idea to apply the universal rules: stay alert at all times.748 square kilometres. see the list of clinics in the directory. confirm your entry requirements at the nearest Albanian embassy or consulate.info YOUR DENTISTRY BRAND Tirana In Your Pocket tirana. Greece.6 GLOSSARY Basic data Albania’s population is 3. Korabi near Peshkopi. In case of problems. 50 and 100 lek. 1000. If payment in foreign currency is possible. Every time you see it done. Driving & Roads The roads may be improving rapidly. Check all border requirements at www. this is never used to rip off foreigners. 21% is Muslim. Before 1991. and 3% is Catholic. PERLADENT Clinic 1: Opposite Hotel Diplomat. don’t wander around unlit areas at night.778 (July 2008 estimate). US. 10. it usually means you’re getting a bad rate (sometimes 100 lek for €1) so don’t fall for it. payment is mostly required in lek. ORTHOPEDICS.if there’s not a missing manhole lid. but driving still requires nerves of steel and a good map. With a staff of qualified doctors in Health Although the locals say the water is safe to drink. Apart from Albanians living in Albania proper. and Japan can enter Albania without a visa. there are more than two million ethnic Albanians in Kosovo. it’s probably best to stick to bottled water. city-centre traffic usually only crawls along at 20-30km/hr with little risk of damage.000 inhabitants (though the real number may be much higher). Indians and a handful of others.perladent. and inconsiderate to other road users. Body language and sounds Albanians. 6% is Orthodox. near the Vasil Shanto bridge. stopping in the middle of the road to chat with a pedestrian relative. shake (or perhaps: wobble) their heads to mean ‘yes’ and nod (or rather jerk the head backwards while emitting a bold cluck) to mean ‘no’. which says a lot about the way visitors are treated in this country. At the time. That said.inyourpocket. Turks. EU citizens may enter using an ID card though we suggest still taking your passport anyway as airlines and officials are all too quickly confused. Rather than being mugged in Albania. Although hotels and some other businesses quote prices in euros or dollars. The longest rivers are the Drini. 2000 and 5000 lek. there were no traffic regulations. COSMETIC DENTISTRY. 90km/hr on dual Smoking Smoking is officially prohibited in public places since 2007. though two mountains of 1612m and 1828m also rise within the municipality. Germany. ignorant about the merits of seatbelts. £1 = 153 lek. while there are coins of 5. Albanians brought thousands of cars into the country from Germany. New Zealand. carriageways and 110km/hr on highways. you can change your euros or dollars at banks and (better) at exchange offices in town. Tel: +355 4 2400 130 Mobile: +355 67 20 555 77. at 2751m. hiss. Still. the clinic offers excellent dental services with the latest technology. In mountain areas having snow chains is a good idea in winter. and always drive with the lights on. so contact-lens wearers should carry eye drops with them or consider wearing glasses. 70% of the population is estimated to be nonreligious or non-practising. Tirana officially has 750. Although Albania is often touted as a majority Muslim country in the foreign press. Spend (most of) your lek before leaving the country as they are worth nothing abroad and there’s no exchange office in the airport’s departure area. there’s another kind of big hole or bump. many of them deluxe Mercedes and Volvos. Of the others. disrespectful of speed limits. yellow vest and first aid kit in the car.

one standard and one 'VIP'. pall. Rr. Q Tickets 200-500 lek. blamed for allowing the pyramid schemes to flourish. tel. Sun. US president George W. with which it breaks relations in 1961. Closed Sat. Imitating Beijing. Screenings at 10:00. though everything is in Albanian. A cultural centre that hosts regular performances by the Tirana City Band. Sun. tries to absorb the country. resigns. This is Tirana's oldest theatre. 1985. is elected mayor of Tirana and initiates a series of projects that change the face of the city. Closed Sat. CULTURE & EVENTS Event information is notoriously difficult to get . The People’s Assembly rescinds the ban on religion and on travel abroad in May. and videos (classics and recent blockbusters) or browse teaching materials. +355 4 222 89 33.com Address: Rruga Murat Toptani Kompleksi Millennium Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.org.aleancafranceze. and the territory of today’s Albania falls into the Eastern (Byzantine) Empire. Find the academy to the northeast of the centre. +355 4 222 20 17. After 1956. shatters windows of cars on the highway. In its own version of the Cultural Revolution in 1967. 14th Century The Ottomans invade what is now Albania in 1385. Aleksandër Moisiu 76. history books. In 1920 Albania regains independence. In 1968 Albania withdraws from the Warsaw Pact. Albania cultivates relations with China. Occasional puppet shows for children in a grand old building. there's an additional summer cinema in the Art Academy. tel.QOpen 10:00 .ida-millennium. the authorities dismantle the statue of Stalin in Tirana. held amidst nationwide unrest. Metropolitan Center (Cultural Center of Tirana) E-4. tel. the first step towards closer cooperation with the EU. near the terminus of the Kinostudio bus line.com. Big Hollywood productions in two screening rooms. It criticises the Soviet Union. Imperial Cinema J-5./fax +355 4 236 51 88. British Council I-4. Rr.com tirana. weeks of protests culminate in the toppling of Enver Hoxha’s statue in Skenderbeg Square. Browse American literature. www./fax +355 4 222 56 97. 19th Century In the 1830s. audio tapes. The Academy of Film & Multimedia. when the Germans take over until their retreat in November 1944. Nine days later. 2006 Albania signs the Stabilisation and Association Agreement with the EU. NATO launches an air war on Yugoslavia on March 25. 2001 In October. tel. The Treaty of London recognises Albania in 1913. a former art lecturer and painter supported by the Socialist Party. and by May 500. where he allegedly is robbed of his watch during a meet and greet with the crowds in Fushe Kruja.000 Kosovars have flooded into the country. 14:30-16:45. The Communist-led National Liberation Front takes power. the Ottomans crush Albanian autonomy. info@aftirana. Pjetër Budi 74. 2009 April – Albania joins NATO. 1990 After the totalitarian regimes collapse everywhere else in Eastern Europe. students at Enver Hoxha University launch a strike.18:00. occupying Albania until 1943.com. www.al. th e Albanian leader. Their rule lasts more than 500 years. and read the English-language papers for upcoming events. Millenium 1 will reopen in a new building in the city centre. Sun. December – The political stalemate between the Democratic and Socialist Parties continues and starts to harm the country’s progress in reforms and EU admission negotiations.16:00.it. keep an eye on posters around town. and is heard as far away as Skopje. causing Albania to break with Belgrade in 1948. demanding reforms. See the Englishlanguage website for what's on. Pallati i Pionierit.8 HISTORY By the seventh century BC. Inside the former Pioneer Palace. 1991 In February. Istituto Italiano di Cultura (Italian Institute of Theatres q. Q Tickets 300-600 lek. the Spekter childrens' folklore group. Sheshi Italia. but in 1928 Zogu proclaims a kingdom and crowns himself King Zog I. Albania maintains a hardline stance. Rr. Millennium shows recent American films in their original language with Albanian subtitles. In 1925 Ahmet Zogu becomes president of the new Republic of Albania. July – Prime Minister Berisha announces that gay marriages will be legalised in Albania. Reservations at: 04 22 53 654 www. Novelist Ismail Kadare wins the first international version of Britain’s Man Booker Prize. 15:00. the shamed government promises results within a year. tel. +355 4 224 08 56. tel. In 229-168 BC the Romans defeat the Illyrians and establish the protectorate of Illyricum. +355 4 224 72 85. but does not succeed in getting a majority. +355 4 227 48 41. Waves of refugees flee the country in March. tel. Closed Sat. Millennium 2 Cinema F-5. USIS (United States Information Service) H/I-6. www. Puppet Theatre (Teatri i Kukullave) E/F-4. result in a landslide victory for the Socialists.imperialcinemas. Other European countries urge the hard-headed parties to reach a compromise. the Illyrians (the apparent ancestors of the Albanian nation) settle in what is now Albania. www.org. Perlat Rexhepi. +355 4 222 24 46/+355 4 225 91 04. Party head Enver Hoxha dies on April 11. 1997 Collapsing pyramid schemes spark months of rioting and lawlessness throughout Albania in January.14:00. Rr. Rr. The war turns Albania into a NATO base of operations. when most of Eastern Europe undergoes de-Stalinization. the Prizren League is founded in 1878 to fight for autonomy and against the partitioning of Albanian territory. Closed Sat. George W. 1999 In response to Serb attacks on ethnic Albanians in Kosovo. He cooperates with the Italians. Albania purges ‘reactionary’ influences. wages a war o f independence against the Ottomans starting in 1443 and enjoys remarkable success in keeping them at bay until his death in 1468.al. Yugoslavia. Murat Toptani. Barrikadave 122. The election results are delayed after allegations of voting irregularities and three deaths. The German cultural centre has a reading room with textbooks and literature inside the National Library. +355 4 226 63 96. tel.com. Promotes Italian culture and language with cultural events and language courses. tel. Bush gets a hero’s welcome on his visit to Albania. QOpen 08:00 .com. The elections are at first declared to have been fair but soon many irregularities emerge. Sheshi Austria. Rr. Book in advance for evening and weekend screenings. An estimated 100. Bush. Rr. Edi Rama. requiring a coalition with the Socialist Movement for Integration party. In 1978 the leadership condemns even China as revisionist and is left with no friends. Albanians proclaim independence in Vlora on November 28.inyourpocket. Rr.esteri. QOpen 08:30 . Ded Gjo Luli. Sun. has a cinema with free screenings of foreign movies every Thursday at 19:00 during university term. Culture) H-6. periodicals and more at this centre beside the US Embassy. +355 4 225 36 54/+355 69 204 42 37. Goethe Institut H-5/6. A political stalemate ensues when the opposition Socialist Party boycotts parliament after a ballot recount is refused. June – Berisha’s Democratic Party of Albania wins the tight-fought national elections. www. Also at the USAID center. Reform comes slowly. parliamentary elections. One fine day. 2007 In June.afmm. Communist Party leader Ramiz Alia announces cautious democratisation in March. www. Borrow French books or languagelearning materials. In June. 2008 March 15 – An accident in a factory used for defusing old munition causes series of explosions. to the delight of the muchdiscriminated LGBT community and to the outrage of religious leaders. during WWI. Q Ticket office open 09:00-13:00. The EU announces there will be no visafree travel for Albanians due to the slow implementation of biometric passports. wiping out the village of Gërdec (14km from Tirana). but Kosovo is given to Serbia. tel. 4th Century The Roman Empire is divided in 395 AD.June 2010 .metropolitane@gmail. 20th Century Local uprisings break out in 1909-1912.visit the websites of the venues listed here.britishcouncil. Rent or view books. Sermedin Said Toptani. tel. 12:30. QOpen 09:00 . who invade again in 1939.com January . tel.al. Cultural centres Alliance Française D-4/5. Uprisings break out over taxation policy in the 1840s. the Metropolitan Theatre group (Teatri i Metropolit) and the Tirana Circus. The explosions destroy hundreds of houses. Albania’s erstwhile ally. Sali Berisha’s Democratic Party wins the national elections from Fatos Nano’s Socialists. 15th Century Skanderbeg. After Russia defeats the Ottoman Empire. President Berisha.edu. named after Shkodra's famous Marubi photographer family.ida-millennium. info@ afmm. it outlaws religion and closes all 2169 of the country’s churches and mosques. +355 4 225 75 28. In June the faults in the economy become clear when thousands of Albanians seeking asylum in Italy commandeer ships. Italy invades Albania. 15:00-19:00. On March 31 the first multi-party elections in 68 years result in a victory for the Communists.inyourpocket. Performances take place between October and May. +355 4 237 95 79. In 1914. On December 12 the Democratic Party is founded. 20:30 and 23:00. Sheraton Mall. Elbasanit. 2005 In July. 1912.14:00.edu.000 Albanians had fled the country in the previous 12 months. inside the Sheraton mall. The defence minister resigns. 197.iictirana. killing 26 and wounding nearly 300 people. 18:00. In summer. and range from Shakespeare to contemporary Albanian and foreign playwrights. National Theatre (Teatri Kombëtar) F-4. built in 1940 to honor Mussolini on his visit to Albania. 9 Cinemas Academy of Film & Multimedia Marubi Rr. OSCE monitors report that the elections only partially complied with international standards. Albania’s first non-Communist party in the postwar era. All are welcome.

info@grandhoteltirana.com. A huge hotel placed at the southern edge of the city centre. with a health club. there are only ten serious collectors of traditional wear in Albania. be aware that English is not always spoken (try Italian. As the use of traditional clothing waned in the 20th century. and is mercifully quiet compared to many other hotels. 79 96. We don’t have too many strange requests. Blv.inyourpocket. Apart from the state museums. the Albanians' clothing allowed strangers to learn all kinds of things about them at a single glance. presidential suite €2530). www. expected to open in 2010. Front Office Coordinator at the Rogner Hotel Europapark in Tirana. 1 suite €150).com. fax +355 4 227 38 13. Berat and Gjirokastra and the Tradita G&T guesthouse in Shkodra.. and many costumes and related objects were lost due to carelessness and decay. but only a small amount is exhibited. tel. and two excellent restaurants. and delicate tablecloths. The artisans were so famed that Albania became a centre of production for the wider region..com Tirana In Your Pocket tirana. unique atmosphere and the central location. Curiously. 6 doubles €150.com. with little in the way of explanations. Shaqiri was working in a smaller hotel until he joined the Rogner’s front desk team in 2003. Styles and fashions changed over the years as new materials and trends emerged.com. With this series of interviews. with several good new small hotels and hostels. themes like the Albanian eagle. Once you’ve walked into the Grand. A welcoming family-run hotel in a quiet. An excellent option hidden in the streets east of the Tirana International hotel. wool and imported silk. embroidering was a craft that was only done by men. Q 6 rooms (singles €60. though unfortunately the museum displays are often dull. Jeronim de Rada 79.sheraton. com. PHALKCW Albania's rich and varied cultural heritage is perhaps best demonstrated by the incredible range of traditional clothing. The comfy rooms with ‘sweet sleeper’ beds will suit the needs of any suit. indoor and outdoor swimming pools. Xheko Imperial I-4. but generally have to be paid in Albanian lek. the family's wealth and standing. info@tirana. Ismail Qemali 11. reservations.. And also our beautiful Mediterranean garden with pool of course. Dëshmorët e Kombit.000 artefacts. PLKW Brilant Antik F-5. and the fairy-tale suites with silk-draped four-poster beds are really rather extravagant. made aware of the importance of preserving old traditional wear. fax +355 4 225 11 67. Room prices vary by season.tirana@ starwoodhotels. efficient rooms. Special restaurants I recommend. The Rogner promises Western standards and delivers .com..hotel-europapark. 55 suites €380. The Arber has small. Special guests’ requests. This makes our hotel special. safe and fax outlet. 15 suites €250-350). doubles €90. though you can have an equally good night's sleep in both a top range €2530 suite and a simple €5 guesthouse bed. Prices vary dramatically.grandhoteltirana. but for the privileged there are the two Club floors with private check-in and lounge. and more. foreigners could only stay at two dreadful hotels.. www. Hotel categories are based on the price of the cheapest double room.xheko-imperial. Q 30 rooms (singles €120.. WHERE TO STAY Symbol key P Air conditioning H Conference facilities R Dataport F Fitness centre K Restaurant C Swimming pool A Credit cards accepted U Facilities for the disabled L Guarded parking G Non-smoking rooms D Sauna W Wi-Fi 11 Upmarket Reasonably priced luxury.. the Metropolitan restaurant and a shopping mall. Tirana In Your Pocket. but the distinct regional variety remained. The most glam hotel in town resides along a quiet street in the bllok area.com/tirana. Q 151 rooms (singles € 240.com January . tel. Most are found around the bllok area. The open jacuzzi bathrooms are any girl’s dream. +355 4 223 50 35. tel. fax +355 4 223 50 50. +355 4 Rogner Europapark H-5.com.June 2010 . PHARULGKDCW Sheraton Tirana Hotel J-5. overlooking the park. I send guests to the National Museum. Thankfully. The professional service. age. 30 doubles €230. The Brilant Antik has large rooms and a traditionally furnished Albanian/ Italian restaurant. double rooms from €90-140. Things have changed dramatically. tel. the National Museum alone has 30. PHAILGBKW tirana. Prices are often quoted in euros. local craftsmen had access to all manner of quality materials. +355 4 225 32 19. where a few dozen kind Tiranians offer free use of their couch for you to crash on for a few nights. social and other special occasions. tel. so check the latest online. click to couchsurfing. and to Petrela Castle.. Special sights I recommend. up to Dajti Mountain. 19 doubles €110. with doubles priced from €150. tel. Good receptionists will be able to give you reliable restaurant. In this issue. The room prices we list include breakfast unless mentioned otherwise. Rr. Rr. info@hotelbrilant. and its small size adds to its charm. clothing was a kind of passport. One of Albania’s top hotels. www. leading to identity mix-ups with some Albanian traditional clothing being exhibited abroad as being from other countries in the region. Rr. Q 29 rooms (7 singles €110. though once a guest arrived with all of her eight cats./fax +355 4 224 Arber E-4. tel. include the Ethnographic Museums of Shkodra. not on the erratic local star system. or to Sofra e Ariut for Albanian dishes. English is spoken. but donations to help upkeep the collection are welcome. com. jacuzzi and sauna. fax +355 4 227 47 11. This centrally placed hotel is one of the city’s best. For many centuries. PHARF LGKDCW Albania has huge costume collections. costumes are attracting more and more local and international interest. Until 1991. www. you might not want to venture out again. Q 25 rooms (5 singles €70-90.com. radio. which include waistcoats.each room is decked out with satellite TV. and now a wide variety of accommodation is available. +355 4 227 38 11. The comfy rooms are complete with TV and telephone. reservation@hotelarber. and both private and state collections are increasingly accessible. Rr. The hotel also lays on frills like an indoor swimming pool. they even sold the family house and moved into a rented apartment to be able to purchase more clothes. +355 68 304 26 64/+355 68 212 10 08 or atelielinda@ hotmail. I like to send guests to Villa Logoreci or Mama Rosa for Italian food. fax +355 4 224 68 52. but it's thanks to them that people have been Grand H-3. A taller new annex is under construction behind the building. contact@xheko-imperial. is very helpful to us as there is a lot of complex and well-arranged information for tourists and business people. For the full hospitality experience. 95 doubles €255. If you go for budget accommodation. Places to view costumes.com. the city’s hotel receptionists are an important source of information for travellers and effectively ambassadors for their country. Visits to their home and storage space along the road to Elbasan can be booked via tel. German or Greek) and ask about their back-up generator if you like heating in winter or a/c in summer.com. and positioned along the old trade routes between west and east. Meet the receptionist Together with Tirana In Your Pocket. There’s no admission fee.hotelbrilant. region of origin.10 TRADITIONAL DRESS Linda Spahiu Collection Linda and her son Luris are perhaps Tirana’s most fervent collectors and restorers of traditional Albanian costumes. and decorated with colours. sightseeing and activity tips. each linked to a specific area or even village. and between the main square and the train station. not just for the rooms but also for its reputation as a meeting point for both locals and visitors. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. incorporating gold and silver thread and small river pearls. 7 suites €350). they are happy to show their collection and sell some items to interested visitors. The lush garden has a tennis court and a swimming pool. embroidered symbols. Facilities are top notch. The excellent Apollonia restaurant is on site. central location.com. There are less frivolous double rooms too.com. Sheshi Italia. apart from Tirana's National Museum and Spahiu Collection. the cultural and also the real value of these items was forgotten. and within Albania there are about 300 different traditional costumes. +355 4 225 95 75/+355 68 202 97 77. Luris speaks English and French. www. Although they do not have a permanent exhibition space yet.inyourpocket. During religious. A recent law prohibiting the export of items older than 50 years from Albania has ironically increased the illegal and unprofessional export of antiques and traditional clothing. marital status.. Take a taxi or bus to the first roundabout after the Martyr’s Cemetery and you’ll be met there. doubles €160). we speak to Gid Shaqiri. Clothes were made by specialised craftsmen and women with cotton.. rogner. natural scenes and patterns.hotelarber. Tirana In Your Pocket introduces you to the city’s most important receptionists. the photos on this page are from some of their top pieces. Q 137 rooms (100 singles €200. +355 4 227 47 07. heavy woollen embroidered xhubleta skirts. PHALKW 225 11 66/+355 69 297 74 71. www. Bardhok Biba 59. conference facilities. suites €150). ethnicity. Mr. Cream of the crop Top-notch rooms.

doubles €91-174. Muhamet Gjollesha 5. tel. cupboards and even the ceilings. +355 69 203 00 03/+355 69 203 00 09.al. parquet-floored rooms and a terracotta terrace with bar on the roof.al. fax +3554 232 07 49. PHAFLKCW hhhh 223 31 51/+355 4 225 84 68.com Rr. 6 suites €130). overlooking the Lana river. fax +355 4 223 41 88.chateaulinzahotel. ample attention has been made to details.diplomatfashion. With well-designed boutique rooms. tel.al. and the interiors are characterised by sleek dark design and the suites come with particularly classy Jacuzzis. www. suites €130-150). Rooms and apartments are modern and spacious. Ismail Qemali 11 Tel. www. rooms have decorations on the walls. greenhouse. Along the road out of town towards Mount Dajti. The higher floors offer great views over town and the mesmerising traffic on the square. +355 4 227 45 11. +355 4 222 26 32/+355 68 207 22 62.com. the resort-style Linza hotel is a foreigner favourite for the sweeping city views from its hillside location. doubles €130160). tel. PALKW MonarC F-5. A small and charming business hotel above the eponymous restaurant on a quiet street near all the action. tel. Q 21 rooms (singles €90-110. reservation@diplomatfashion.hoteltirana. 45 apartments €150-190). Rr. suites €130). doubles €110-150. On the New York. With a light Scandinavian feel and and enthusiastic staff. great suites and wifi throughout.com www. +355 4 223 41 85.12 WHERE TO STAY Chateau Linza Qesarakë. Head to the top floor for the bar with a waterfall and 360 degree city views. Zhan D’Ark.grandhoteltirana. Blv. hotelmondial@albamail. the Diplomat has three floors of excellent.al. A different city on every floor. Now thoroughly modernised. With only 12 rooms. it’s a comfortable base. Rr. 9 doubles €140). Jul Varibova 6. Q 154 rooms (singles €78-149.hotelmondial.com. Despite double glazing.al. An elegant and modern hotel with plush pleasant rooms that favour shades of brown to more frivolous colours. Built in the 1970s with help of the Chinese. suites €198). Q 26 rooms (singles €85-110. +355 4 Diplomat Fashion Rr. a few conference rooms and a small fitness and sauna centre. Fax +355 4 224 79 96 info@grandhoteltirana. tel. 50m from Sheshi Mustafa Qemal Ataturk. Q 10 rooms (singles €100.com. PHARFLGKDW Tirana In Your Pocket tirana. Downstairs is a pleasant library and TV area.com . Sheshi Skenderbej 8. PKW 223 23 72.inyourpocket. and it’s well-equipped for meetings and conferences too.al.monarc. doubles €100-120. with propaganda slogans on the roof and escape tunnels for the elite. tel. Bajram Curri. +355 4 223 50 OUR PASSION: HOSPITALITY OUR GOAL: YOUR PLEASURE Green House G-5.hoteldiplomathy. Linza.org. www. some with shower and some also with a bath. PHARLGDW Diplomat F-1. tel. ada@chateaulinzahotel.com. the rooms meet international standards and the hotel is especially popular for conferences. www.com. Go online for their special weekend rates. Muhamet Gjollesha. Milan and Paris-themed floors. doubles €110. street noise is an issue in some rooms./fax +355 4 Tirana International E-4. fax +355 4 223 04 57. www. doubles €110. Irfan Tomini. Komuna e Dajtit.com.com. and there’s no parking on-site.com. The MonarC is a classic-looking yellow building on a busy crossing in the centre. +355 4 224 79 96. fax +355 4 227 45 00.com. hotel@hoteltirana. for years Tirana’s main landmark was the only highrise in the country. It’s a kilometre from the centre. info@greenhouse. Just west of the centre along Blv. Q 28 rooms (singles €90. PHALKW 90/+355 4 226 72 19. Q 12 rooms (singles €80. Q 14 rooms (5 singles €100. www. PHALKCW Mondial F-1. al. diplomat@icc-al. Rr. info@monarc. www.

Muhamet Gjollesha. with king-sized beds and iron balconies. +355 4 225 31 91. PALBKW Eder F-2. Mid-range Good value doubles from between €50-90. where you can check out any time you like. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit N°5/1. Rr. Along the busy ring road near the Durrës highway.org.hotelbroadway-al. balconied rooms and good facilities for business travellers. Q 18 rooms (singles €35. PLBKDC Ferari B-2.com.com. PRLBK Lugano E-3. with friendly service and a top location between the US and Italian embassies. Rr. fax +355 4 227 20 77. www.com. Q 15 rooms (singles €32-60. vila_3@yahoo. Firenze has charming staff. Q 20 rooms (singles €50-65. PKW tel. info@hotel-europa. the university and the Grand Park. PARLK tirana.hoteldorocity. Q 20 rooms (singles €58-68. Breakfast is served in the streetside restaurant. but alternative vistas are offered by the elegant photos of cities around the world that decorate the rooms and halls. Rr. well-equipped for travellers on a budget. Kruja D-3. a short walk southwest of the city centre. Broadway H-3. a short walk from the main square and just around the corner from a clutch of embassies. info@ederhotel. quiet and efficient rooms and friendly staff in a small business hotel down an alley off the street. some even with fireplaces. PAK Sky Hotel G/H-4. Rr. Q 7 rooms (singles €50.com. the large Broadway hotel has a Vegas thing going on. Q 8 rooms (singles €40. luganohotel@yahoo. Seven smart rooms in a small 1930s villa set away from the street. A glass lift whisks you up to halls decked out with pharaonic art. Rr. www.com. Rr. tel. +355 4 225 46 19. all fitted out with satellite TV. Ask for the larger top-floor rooms with balconies when you book. 24 doubles €98-110. PARLKW Doro City D-1. Ismail Qemali 8/1. Rr. A small and warm little hotel in the very centre of town. Rr. info@ New hotel on the bllok tel. florid bathroom and a balcony overlooking the quiet street. tel. Opposite the Catholic church. doubles €50). tel. +355 4 226 65 82/+355 69 206 57 08. Check out the fifth floor.com.com.hotelcitytirana. reservations@hotelkruja. internet and air conditioning. Convenient for various embassies. PHARLBKW Firenze D-4. There’s a decent restaurant with a lush terrace too. Opened just as this guide went to print. it’s perfect for business trips. tel. tel.com. and the rooms are all soundproofed. There’s a restaurant and pleasant café terrace too. 02/+355 69 257 51 72. 2 suites €130). +355 4 235 64 reservations@hotelcitytirana. with standard rooms overlooking the calm street out front.hotelelysee-al. 2 suites €70-80). brown. but guests can also use a PC with internet at the reception. info@ hotelelysee-al.com. tel. Themistokli Gërmenji 2/173. hotelkruja. the rooms are lookers themselves. triples €105).com. but unlike pre-1990 Albania you can also actually leave. A surprisingly good business hotel on the boulevard just north of the main square. Mihal Duri 2/1. doubles €78.al./fax +355 4 224 77 99. Fitted out with flatscreen TVs. reservations@ hoteldorocity. There’s no arguing with the location of this place. Clean.iliriahotel. Blv. fax +355 4 224 70 70. tel. Elysée H-5/6. 3 suites €130-150). PARLBK California E-3. this is Tirana’s latest stylish business hotel with rooms unfortunately only on the two lowest floors of the Sky Tower building. 4 triples €118.14 WHERE TO STAY Vila 3 G-5. triples €99). TIYP was given a pre-opening tour and although the view is not panoramic. com. 6 doubles €80. Breakfast is served in the top-floor Sky Club. fax +355 4 224 06 88. PARLGW 223 22 06. Rr. All rooms have a quality. tel. and small but pleasant rooms contain generally matching furnishings and shiny bathrooms. PRLKW City H-5. +355 4 223 81 06. Recently overhauled.com.com. A decent business hotel north of the main square. www. PARLBK iliriahotel. 2 doubles €50). Rr. Elbasanit. www.hotel-europa. Next to the Selman Stermasi stadium and within easy walking distance of the bllok area. +355 4 241 59 95. the Europa has small.com. sparkling en suite bathrooms and wifi. tel. suites €100). the owner’s favourite. decorated in black and dark purple with touches of gold. +355 4 Iliria I-6. 5 family rooms €70). 13 doubles €50-60. +355 4 222 38 76. +355 4 222 20 23/+355 68 203 15 23. doubles €75). Rr. 45 doubles €70-110. +355 4 224 90 99. modern and well-furnished rooms. doubles €70). tel. skyhotel_tirana@yahoo. fax +355 4 224 86 92. 4 suites €120). though there’s no lift to get you between the four floors. Rr. play or get away. A small hotel with just five rooms of varying styles. Doro has quality rooms fitted with plenty of wood. Rr. tel. This unprepossessing but comfortable four-story hotel best serves those who want to get away from the city centre. PRL +355 4 222 28 80. Don Bosko. Q 25 rooms (singles €50. tel. The two top floor rooms are large but have slanting ceilings and only skylights for windows. fax +355 4 223 81 08. +355 68 24 71 233. com. ederhotel. Just a short crawl from Rinia Park in the centre of town but hidden in a courtyard away from traffic noise.al. and especially the suites Egypped up quite impressively. Q 18 rooms (3 singles €35. the Iliria’s glamorous lobby area gives access to the smart clean rooms beyond. apartment €75). Welcome to the Hotel California. It serves a nice Italian breakfast and staff are polite.com./fax +355 4 227 47 41. Mihal Duri 34. and abstract art on the walls. It’s a few minutes drive west of the city centre.com. with rooms in corresponding styles. The views are uninspiring as it’s jammed in between highrise. Q 7 rooms (5 doubles €100. www. fax +355 4 225 31 92. tel. Gjon Pali II. Security is top-notch as the prime minister lives next door and his goons patrol the streets. A quality mid-range hotel. Free guarded parking too. www. Rooms are modern and quiet./fax +355 4 223 91 70. doubles €50. firenzehotel@albmail. tel. broadway@icc-al. behind the pyramid.com Tirana In Your Pocket . Q 20 rooms (10 singles €60. e Kavajës. Emin Duraku 8./fax +355 4 237 17 00. and some boasting large terraces. Q 5 rooms (3 singles €40. Zogu I 72.com. doubles €70. it’s well placed if you need to pray. N°3. It’s located along Rruga Elbasanit. Q 53 rooms (8 singles €60-80. with kitsch on all walls and a massage shower. Q 33 rooms (2 singles €80. www. Downstairs and on the terrace surrounding the building there’s a good restaurant and pizzeria. There’s wifi. Myslym Shyri. doubles €75-85. california@albaniaonline. www. Mine Peza. Q 26 rooms (doubles €5060). There’s also a restaurant and pleasant pavement café outside. PALKW Europa F-3/4.inyourpocket. fax +355 4 224 39 67.

doubles €65. Tel. Sami Frashëri 2. reservations@therandahotel.com. tel. PALK Nobel E-4. PHRLW 94. PALW Vila Belvedere F-5. one of the few to apply environmentally friendly techniques like solar panels. +355 825 55 92/3/4. Murat Toptani 25.com. +355 4 223 09 30. There’s a PC parked in the hall for guests to use too. PARLK 202 07 57.Albania. +355 4 225 64 44/+355 69 Victoria C-5. Q 8 rooms (singles €30. tel. is not matched by its interiors. Rr. With its white tile floors and large bathrooms.com Saranda . brigh t rooms. Rr.victoria@interalb.therandahotel. A charming small hotel of high standards. doubles €70).com For your week end break Tirana In Your Pocket tirana./fax +355 4 226 51 31.hotel-palma. Q 10 rooms (singles €50. info@hotel-palma.go all the way and get the one with the jacuzzi. www. hotelnobeltirana. tel. doubles €50). Rr. Q 6 rooms (singles €40.inyourpocket. is run by a family who spent several years in Italy.net. The peach-coloured rooms are decent but nothing special. PAK Theranda H-3. phone and couch. fax +355 4 227 36 89. Tiranë. suites €120).com. +355 4 225 19 35. The 45 fully furnished apartments are perfect for your stay in Tirana besides clean air they offer plenty of privacy and full service. Q 30 rooms (singles €50.com. www. the Nobel has modern furnishings. The excellent location of this Croatian-owned hotel. and has pleasant if somewhat chintzy rooms. tel. miniri. and its pizzeria. doubles €80. fax Stela C-5. com.com. One street west of the bllok area. +355 579 22 115/6/7. Q 9 rooms (6 singles €40. doubles €60). and the rooms face a noisy street. +355 69 20 30 003/9 www. Opposite the Catholic Church.com Rruga Nacionale Durres-Rrogozhine. A small. Nirvana E-3. but the rooms are affordable and comfy. with decent rooms and a restaurant./fax +355 4 223 55 67.Nobel ticks all the boxes. Rr. The modern Victoria. Zogu I.com . KM 12.com. Q 17 rooms (singles €60. com. Stela seems a good choice. with a small TV. www.com.16 WHERE TO STAY +355 4 223 30 96. Komuna e Dajtit. The reception can be found upstairs beyond the restaurant. hotelnirvana@hotmail. www. Belvedere doesn’t offer much of a view. Rr. PAKW Miniri E-4. Rr.com. as well as tacky artificial flowers. Q 12 rooms (singles €55.malirobitresort. Andon Zako Çajupi 6-7. 3 sui tes €65-100). Perfectly located in the centre along a recently pedestrianised street. www. Albania Tel. w w w. www. hosamnasr@malirobitresort. hotelbutrinti@hotmail./fax +355 4 236 15 C hateau Linza is set at the foot of Mount city views Palma H-3. Rr.hotelbutrinti. doubles €50-80. tel.com. 2 suites €80). wireless internet and a decent Italian restaurant on the ground floor. The Croatian restaurant on the premises is the redeeming factor. modern hotel in a central location in the bllok. triples €100). The sel f-proclaimed bou tique hotel has two modern buildings (of which one pavilion-like space is used for meals). doubles €60-100.hotel-nirvana.com. tel. Dibrës 3. Blv. However. The hotel has 21 rooms and suites beside the swimming pool and gardens. Dibrës 445. Tel. reservations@hotelnobeltirana. Qesarekë-Linzë.chateaulinzahotel. PHAKW 70. hotel. tel. Do you think they would notice if you booked a room under the name Kurt Cobain? This large villa set back from the busy road has rooms in gaudy colours with fitting cosy furniture . cheerfully coloured and affordable rooms. and experien ced staff.com. Kavajës 96/2. Tucked behind the Tirana International Hotel. and a central location . the rooms have thin rugs and small towels. +355 4 223 52 +355 4 227 37 66. fax +355 4 223 52 71. hotel_miniri@yahoo. 3 doubles €60). just off the main square. offering beautiful views over Tirana while still in the freshness of the mountain breeze. Friendly staff. Dajti. vilabelvedere@albcomport. tel. Dibrës. Q 14 rooms (singles €45-80. All rooms are equipped with TV and minibars.

+355 4 223 92 14. Q 10 rooms (singles €30. Spacious rooms with attached bathrooms overlook terracotta roofs. The best (and best-named) of several options by the airport. this hotel is near the terminal yet quite a slog around the perimeter fence. The fire. The restaurant rustles up Mediterranean food. fax +355 4 225 68 64. Not far from the city centre. +355 4 225 00 00. Mihal Grameno. The room price is the same regardless of the number of occupants. Mobile: +355 69 2065 708 : : Email: vila 3@yahoo com : vila_3@yahoo. 2 doubles €33). Rr. the modern Briker has rooms with wooden floors. tel. The breakfast buffet features fresh fruit and pastries. The coolest airport hotel you’ve seen in your life is right here in Tirana. Parlamenti F-5. Jeronim de Rada 75. tel.com. Q 11 rooms (singles €30. There’s only Albanian on TV but that’s compensated by the erotic art on the walls. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. PLKC Hotel Airport Tirana Rinas. Best of all.com. PJK 43. triples €60). Modelled after a big silver plane and expected to open sometime in 2010. Isa Boletini 36. Rr. www. Double rooms with small bathrooms (shower only) and balconies along a busy road. No English is spoken. +355 4 830 01 229 13 89. as he’d faint at the sight of this garish pink building with a big green V on the facade. quality and safe environment vic vice.com. friendly hotel just metres from the airport arrivals hall. Rr. tel. Some English is spoken. Q 20 rooms (singles/doubles €25). and laundry and minibar is included in the price. basic bathroom. Siri Kodra. hotelbriker@hotmail. Rr. +355 4 223 54 91/+355 68 270 79 01. Kodrat e liqenit. Inside. tel. Rr. net. Q 7 rooms (doubles €30). tel. PW Pike Loti G-6. environm m of Vila 3 will be sure to make your stay in Tirana a pleasant one. cc c The Vila 3 restaurant is well known for the delicious traditional Albanian and ur rant tradition ona Italian dishes. info@vilaparkhotel.tafaj. clean and quiet rooms with fridge. So are coffee and tea. Budget Why pay more. when we visited. +355 4 222 95 Vila Aeroport Rinas. Tel/fax: +355 04 266 582. A garden restaurant with pool at the rear is also available for those simply waiting for flights. 6 suites €100). +355 4 225 65 97. Q 16 rooms (doubles €50. PL We look forward to greeting you in Vila 3.com/verzaci.com. and we Ti d guarantee to provide for every need you may have – your satisfaction is our ha ave o only goal! Meg Klaus D-3.and soundproof rooms have bright colours. The bar offers exotic ys offe ffe cocktails served according to your prefe ccording c rding cording pref preferences. Kalaja amounts to a good budget choice. hotelairporttirana@live. excellent and fast service. +355 4 222 10 84/+355 69 406 62 85. Murat Toptani. it’s important to ask if the heating in cheaper hotels runs on electricity. en suite bathrooms and TVs in a dead-central location. cheap rooms and a café downstairs. PARFBKDW Vila Tafaj D-3. fax +355 4 223 59 56. Amusingly. tel. simple. In this hostellike setup. so call for a free pickup. 4 suites €80). A decent budget hotel near the city centre. the Areela is housed in a building with spotlessly clean rooms and bathrooms. you can either share a room or be selfish and take one all for yourself. indeed? Double rooms from €25-50.150m. +355 68 Areela C-4./fax +355 4 223 51 55. Q 12 rooms (doubles €35). the hotel dates from King Zog's era (1929-1934) and is near to offices. PALW Vila 3 Hotel & Restaurant Jurgen Rinas. hotelareela@yahoo. doubles €40). and bathrooms are ready for take-off with their space-age shower cabins. relaxation and comfort can all be found at Vila 3. It’s good that Gianni is no longer among us. PH hhh Ambasador D-5. embassies. satellite TV. P Tirana In Your Pocket tirana. where the modernistic rooms of Vila Park with their balconies overlook people strolling amongst the trees. Asim Vokshi 141. All come with private bath. clean and comfortable rooms. Rr. klidbalkan@albaniaonline. No luxury or soundproofing. Rr. and if the hotel has a back-up generator in case the power goes pow. A short stroll from the main square and a few steps up from the street. +355 68 207 70 98. the rooms are plain and basic.18 WHERE TO STAY Airport Hotels 90. PHARLKW Kalaja F-5. www. Barrikadave 3/24. An elegant 1930s building in the city centre with a green garden at the back to relax in. Until it opens. Q 7 rooms (singles/doubles €40). Taxis to the centre are provided free. Mahmut Fortuzi. Q 50 rooms (22 singles €60. tel. consula ula lates and governmental institutions. PK Briker D-4/5. The Vila 3 hotel has five rooms and two suites. Mine Peza 86. doubles €40).com. tel. PHARFLBKDCW Guva e Qetë F-5. Verzaci is a 5-minute walk along the main road north from the airport. Q 11 rooms (6 singles and 5 doubles €30). www. Simple. HA Excellent service. Small. doubles €35). A basic. Rr. tel. a TV and a fan. Tirana’s most tranquil hotel is set 100 metres inside the Grand Park. +355 68 200 63 63. and pizzas from our wood burning oven are served in relaxing d ved and contemporary surroundings with a traditional touch. Rooms are spacious and modern. There’s a top class gym and sauna in the adjacent building that guests can use for a €15 per day. telephone serv . so we just grabbed some room keys to explore the place ourselves.hotelairporttirana. tel. Lekë Dukagjini 3. it’s parked along the road from the airport to the north.inyourpocket. Grand Park. +355 4 222 65 79. Set ce e e. modem-compatible telephones. Q 12 rooms (singles €25. but at least there are smiles all round. hidden from the street in a courtyard and far from any traffic noise. Selvia. Address: Rr. doubles €30). minibar. Rr./fax +355 4 236 05 47. tel. doubles €40. 26 doubles €90. Near the market and only a ten-minute walk from the centre. Q 25 rooms (8 singles €50. www. Rooms have option odern optional ona matrimonial beds. tel.com. affordable and central hotel. Look for the blue-glass building with the German flag on top. +355 4 222 75 81/+355 4 223 42 80. on a quiet street and next door to the Brilant hotel. Verzaci Rinas. Rooms are quiet and clean. and the naughty soft focus photos in the halls are a nice touch. fax +355 4 225 92 36. turisalba.com. The rooms are decent enough for the price and have TVs. with tile floors./fax +355 56 46 01 18.com.com. Q 7 rooms (5 singles €25. this family-run hotel offers small. tel. The relative lack of amenities is compensated by the management`s eagerness to please. Q 12 rooms (6 doubles €80. A very pleasant and well-signposted place on a residential road near the train station. nicely decorated in Western suite n style with a luxurious and modern atmosphere. This family-run hotel is tucked away off the main street and set behind potted trees and flowers. r condit services erv and a wireless internet connection. An excellent. a small disco and some large rooms on the top floor. the Ambasador is a simple. Some English is spoken at the reception.com Alpin C-5. Car access is restricted during daytime. Q 7 rooms (singles €25. 15 doubles €60-90. quiet place off the main road. www. Q 12 rooms (singles €30. The historical location. L Vila Park K-4. you’’ll have to make do with the adjacent Dallas-meets-Dracula ranch with a decent restaurant. air conditioning. Rr. 2 suites €90-100).com . doubles €40. English-speaking staff members are present after 10:00. tel. the hotel is ensconced inside the ancient walls of Justinian’s Fortress. Rr. Rooms service from our restaurant is resta estau available. In winter. areela. vilatafaj@ yahoo. Murat Toptani 9. P Haxhiu E-5. It’s got a light and airy feeling and views of old tile roofs. Qemal Stafa 391. 2 apartments €150).vilaparkhotel. +355 4 226 50 24/+355 68 235 46 55. in a safe location in central Tirana. the concierge was too drunk to even walk to the front desk. Rr. tel. red/white furniture and large blue-glass windows. TV and minibar. fax +355 4 225 56 13. We accept Visa and Mastercard. triples €45). Tiranë Albania : ranë anë. Q 9 rooms (singles. tel.

in several apartments spread over a brand new building. pall. Good budget accommodation in rooms spread across three buildings just north of the city centre. com. bujtinashqiptare1@ yahoo. 3./ Republika C-5. On a side street halfway the centre and the train station. but a welcoming option for budget travellers. so it’s no good for party animals. Rr. Abdyl Frashëri.. +355 Freddy's Hostel E-4. Rruga Jeronim de Rada 103. www. PLBK fax +355 4 225 39 24. tel. Q 5 rooms (singles. some using clean shared facilities.uaw-al. +355 4 237 21 02/+355 69 333 83 41. some with en suite bathrooms. but get a room at the back for a quiet night’s sleep. It’s a great way to meet locals and learn more about how they live. Vesa Center. 21 Pension Strazimi Rr. facilities vary from room to room but all have private bathroom and TV. Albaniantrip D-4. Q 16 rooms (doubles €20-30.freddyshostel. N°7. One for the ladies. Rr. on the Uzina bus line. a/c and private bathrooms come with a lovely landlady. the Republika has decent rooms. either inside the room or just outside the hall. They can be rented per room (with private or shared bathrooms) or as a whole. tel. doubles €20). in four locations across the city centre. 66.com.com.com. pensionandrea@ gmail.com Tel. bring hands and feet. republikahotel@yahoo. The Strazimis like to lock the door by midnight. and have wifi and a fully equipped kitchen with washing machine and fridge. Naim Frashëri 6. triples €30). doubles €25). Pall. Eminently suitable for flashpackers. Q 4 rooms (singles €20. On the top floor of the ‘Useful to Albanian Women’ NGO office building. Ap.com. Freddy's is just a short walk north of the main square down a quiet street. +355 Guesthouses & Apartments Staying at a guesthouse means you may be sharing the house and some of the the facilities with the locals. tel. The rooms are basic but comfortable. doubles €20). Basic and cheap rooms with small en suite bathrooms set above a smokey café.org. Q 7 rooms (singles €8. who tirana. fax +355 4 222 50 14.stephencenter. Cheap The pits . +355 4 224 82 32/+355 69 230 81 11. tel. Jeronim de Rada 103. stephencenter@stephencenter. www. Dervish Hima 38. Xhina Ballo. Hoxha Tahsim 1. Breakfast is available at the café on the ground floor of the villa.com tirana. he’s here to stay and hopes to open his own pizzeria. doubles €40). We’ll be the first to review it. tel.June 2010 . contact@ albaniantrip.20 WHERE TO STAY Savana I-6. +355 4 223 07 77.com.less than €25 for a sagging double. alfredsalku@yahoo. Vesa Residence I-4. tel. tel. Rr. anticipating the flood of smelly backpackers expected to scrounge through the country in coming years.com January . just down the quiet street running parallel to the tracks. Rr. Note that the Kalaja hotel (see Budget hotels) has a few rooms that are available as dorms.is one of the better-known new arrivees.. Q 3 rooms (singles €5. Rr. Papa Kristo Negovani 42. his story of imprisonment by various governments having been reported in newspapers worldwide. You’ll be surprised at how people of meager means lavish care and attention on their apartment interiors. On Tirana’s busy boulevard. All rooms have cable TV and a/c. wifi and airport pickup service too. shk. In a quiet location near the Parliament building. Ali Demi.com. Near the train station. with modern two. turn down the alley next to the Brilant hotel. Endri consists of a large first floor apartment with rooms for rent. Good value for money if you’re only interested in the nearby bars and restaurants or an early morning bus to southern Albania. two basic rooms and a kitchenette are available for travellers. it’s the third door on the right. doubles €16. Rr. www. Rr. tel. 27. Bardhok Biba 73/1. There’s laundry. Comfortable two-bedroom apartments sleeping up to four or five people. Q Double rooms €25. doubles €30). €5 per additional person). Sulejman Pasha. www.and three-bedded rooms (no bunk beds).com. Dafina C-4. this. Sh. +355 4 222 24 00. Q 4 apartments (single use €20. 3. and the US refusing to send them back to their home countries. Vaso Pasha. tel. www. com. one Egyptian. and ended up in Albania. You have your own bathroom. The ‘Christian environment’ provided in the cosy guestrooms of the Stephen Center is available to missionaries and other travellers and consists of simple but well-furnished rooms with twin beds. Q 2 rooms (1 single €30. Zog I. Modern selfcatering studios and apartments sleeping 3-9 people. Q 6 rooms (singles €30. doubles €10). +355 4 222 04 33/+355 68 219 69 03.albaniantrip. 1 double €60). +355 4 224 41 68/+355 69 227 25 22.inyourpocket. PW Bujtina Shqiptare D-3. Karl Gega. +355 68 40 58 529/+355 69 22 63 333. Tirana pensionandrea@gmail. tili_985@hotmail. Rr.vesacenter. Ali Demi is just east of the centre. Q PFLKDW UAW Guesthouse E-2. Bardhok Biba 75. PW tel. 4 222 30 01. Abu Beker . and cable TV. +355 4 225 69 47 +355 69 209 49 15 Tirana In Your Pocket Pension Andrea F-5. Expect lowstandard rooms with en-suite facilities that are bearable if you need to catch an early train or a bus heading north. PRL speaks some English. The home of Xhetan and Melihat Strazimi has three basic but clean rooms with shared bathrooms. With no country that participated in the Afghanistan war willing to take these men in at the time. triples €25). and equipped with a full kitchen. artel@icc-al. tel. Rr.inyourpocket. To find the unmarked pension. private bathroom and adequate heating. Limited English is spoken. WHERE TO STAY Guantanamo refugees What do five Uighur muslims (from China’s Xinjiang region). Bajram Curri. 4 226 60 77/+355 68 203 52 61.com. apt. Albania was the only country in the world that agreed to give them asylum. 141. tel. Q 7 rooms (singles €10. one Algerian and an Uzbek have in common? These eight men all were found to be innocent after years in the Guantanamo Bay camp.who works at the Vllaznia restaurant on Rruga Kavajës . P Vila Verde B-4. Pension Andrea’s four basic rooms with TV. PGKW Hostels The number of hostels in Albania rocketed from just one to about seven in 2009. P Stephen Center B&B E-5/6. 30.org. It's more of a guesthouse than a true hostel. Q 8 rooms (singles €12. sevim@icc-al. Rr. +355 4 225 69 47/+355 69 209 49 15. Handy for both the centre and the city’s transport options. the Dafina has a handful of simple and quiet rooms. Although he has not seen his wife and children for a decade.it. Rr. Blv.com. Rr. +355 4 227 88 16. +355 68 207 70 69. off Blv. P 23. run by a friendly couple who live in the apartment next door. tel. Endri H-4.

The restaurant is in a beautifully restored 1920s villa with a walled garden. era_delivery@yahoo. it's best to allow the waiters Oda E-5. free linen and towels . look for the sign on the main street. Simple breakfast included for the €14+ beds. though keep in mind that you won't get much sleep on weekend nights . PHLKCW (+355) 4 83 03 00/+355 68 205 54 84. Tirana-Elbasan road. (300-1500 lek). Dëshmorët e Kombit. PLBKC Venue Park Mullet. +355 4 227 47 07. a large flat hearty pie stuffed with onion. with plenty of fresh fish and produce. Ismail Qemali 33. Rr. the salad bar and the decadent selection of cheese. info@dajtipark. Q 11 rooms (7 doubles € 40. Q 9 rooms (singles and doubles €20. 12:00-23:00. amazing views and the classy White Camellia conservatory. Rr.always check that they don't have a wedding or other party planned during your stay.23:00. Bush 1 Tel. Blv. In the summer many Tiranans trek here to swim in the nice pool. Find TBH2 in the alley behind Sofra restaurant. sitting on (indeed) ottomans at low tables in a reconstructed oda (guest room) in an old house. The dress code is smart casual.net. modern complex on the flanks of Mount Dajti. If you're bringing hungry friends. Q 5 rooms (1 double.inyourpocket. Tirana's Mai Tai Resort has it all: hotel rooms. Fri 10:00 . Rr. We've listed the average main course prices in the reviews. km 8.net. +355 4 223 50 35. feta cheese and garlic). Rr.16:00. Vinum is tucked away down a small lane. A nearby apartment is available for longer stays. It’s hard to go wrong with anything here. Sheshi Italia. Free pickup from the airport. +355 68 216 73 57. but Piazza hasn’t lost its cachet. internet and washing machines. Good restaurant on site too.panoramadajt. +355 68 216 73 57. Pilsner Urquell is on tap. Rr. The competition has made it more accessible and affordable. Set underneath a groovy wave roof. or you can drive up. PW Albanian cuisine is surprisingly good and tasty. Near the corner with Rr. PLBKCW Metropolitan J-5. tel. Enjoy excellent traditional North Albanian cuisine here in surroundings reminiscent of a High Albania tavern. +355 4 224 68 52. Kavajës 175. The classy first-floor Carlsberg restaurant in the Xheko Imperial Hotel is deservedly popular with the foreign crowd. +355 4 226 99 31 Tirana In Your Pocket tirana. Era H-3. QOpen 13:00 .the downside is the traffic noise. The charming. Rr. km 5. all far from the noise of the capital yet just a short drive to the city centre. at the end of Rruga Ismail Qemali. tel. triples €60). PJB Carlsberg I-4. tel. The people behind TBH1 have found another charming villa and have turned it into a buzzing hostel. while some of the country’s best cooks and waiters ensure a quality meal. Q (300-700 lek). Rogner Europapark Hotel. with a set of basic rooms with bunk beds. petulla te fshjra. tel. and in the foothills of Mount Dajti.22 WHERE TO STAY and some also have balconies. Opened by an Albanian-American family in 1993. tel. Rr. 2 singles €30. 19:00-23:00. dajtipark. Apollonia’s menu features not only Greek. 1 suite €30). Bush 1. tel. +355 4 226 99 31/+355 68 207 44 49. directly to the east of the city. +355 4 224 46 57. the Dajti Park offers great views of the city and is a pleasant place to chill out. Rr. +355 4 224 95 41/+355 Dajti Park Tirana-Dajti road.24:00.tiranahostel. Guests can use the garden kitchen and terrace. tel.June 2010 . Q 18 rooms (€12-16 per bed). www. tel. +355 68 328 66 66. Expect modern rooms and services. PAB Piazza E-4. QOpen 06:00 . bar. km 15. tel.QOpen 07:00 .23:00. 2 chalets €40). Tirana Backpacker Hostel 2 F-2. with ample opportunity for getting drunk with strangers. washing machine. Sheets and towels are changed daily too . The guest rooms have balconies and are well-equipped. +355 4 223 08 Panorama Tirana-Dajti road. Q 4 rooms (€12 per bed). the Sheraton’s Metropolitan restaurant has excellent Albanian and international fusion dishes on offer at international prices. +355 4 223 07 06. RESTAURANTS Symbol key P Air conditioning E Occasional live music G No smoking T Child friendly B Outside seating S Take away W Wi-Fi V Home delivery A Credit cards accepted L Guarded parking 23 Tirana Backpacker Hostel 1 H-5/6. A large. (600-1200 lek). with many members of the Albanian emigrant diaspora returning with years of experience in the catering industries around the world. www. +355 4 225 78 05. but we are especially taken with the steaks. 4 dorms with 5-6 beds €12/person). +355 68 202 39 36. +355 4 230 22 33. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. Sami Frashëri. or vegetables. Excellent traditional Albanian food served in a large restaurant with nice photos of old Tirana (with English captions no less). doubles €50.com January . Xheko Impe- Out of town Tirana's playgrounds are in the green valley southeast of town along the road to Elbasan. Albanian and Italian specialities. Piazza was Tirana’s first truly elegant restaurant. with outdoor seating in the lush hotel garden.com. Try the tavë oven dish served with Korça meatballs or the speciality.com. Dining in Tirana is cheap and even in upscale restaurants a main course will not cost much more than 800 lek. tel. Mrizi i Zanave F-5. In summer. strings of garlic and peppers and old photos. The Albanian food is excellent.24:00. QOpen 12:00 23:00. Rr. a mix of Mediterranean and Balkan traditions.com. AEB Mrizi i Zanave North Albanian Restaurant Vinum E-5. panorama@ albaniaonline. Near the quaint Ottoman Tanners' Bridge (Ura e tabakëve) by the river Lana. THARILEK 22/+355 68 208 49 00. Sheraton Hotel. tel. fax +355 4 230 22 34. leek.10:30. PAB Albanian Bantia H-4. a nice garden. Eat Ottoman-style in Tirana's only true traditional family-run restaurant. and the chef/owner produces superb Italian and French influenced dishes. A complex in Mount Dajti national park offering wooden chalets amidst landscaped grounds and a well-to-do restaurant. The fresh salad bar is excellent. tel. QOpen 12:00 22:30. or village pie. and fërgesë (fried minced lamb. Presidenti George W. tel. Rr. Era also delivers home. the Mrizi i Zanave restaurant is named after Gjerg j Fishta's Renaissance-era sonnet book Valley of Goddesses. km 22. Apollonia H-5. Ded Gjo Luli 1. One block east of the Rogner Hotel. Qemal Stafa 60. Elbasanit 85. Shuttle buses to the complex depart regularly from the top station of the cable car. PE 69 209 49 11. swimming pools and an exotic name. Occasionally musicians also saunter around the dining room. serenading guests with Albanian ballads. Many modern hotels and popular restaurants can be found here. www. The hostel has 23 beds. restaurant. Q 14 rooms (doubles €40). Upmarket Even at the fanciest places in Tirana a meal won’t break the bank. 12:00-22:30. Luigj Gurakuqi. The restaurant has a stylish setting. consider ordering a lakror.it's like you never left your mummy. Surrounded by shelves with dishes. head for the open-air rooftop restaurant. The odd green marble effect in the rooms can be endured in return for the stunning view of Petrela Castle on the opposite peak. QOpen 10:00 . but also kangaroo meat.com tirana. QOpen 12:00 . a dazzlingly white classicist pleasure garden complete with fountains. Standards are often high. tel. Sun 06:00 . Mai Tai Resor t Tirana-Elbasan road. opposite the VW shop. internet. AEB rial Hotel. nightlife safaris and outdoor adventures.10:30.000 lek). Brick arches surround the diners. Closed Sun. Presidenti George W. just 9km east of Tirana and 800 metres above sea level. this popular and foreigner-friendly spot makes for a good casual lunch or dinner. Meaning 'wind'./fax +355 4 236 31 24. yellow 1940s Villa Karajani is home to the first hostel in the country. Enjoy. tel. R6 tel. One of Tirana’s nicest restaurants.com. enjoy the pool or let the kids romp around. This is still the place for chic parties and business dinners. creamy cheese. try the stuffed eggplant and peppers.inyourpocket.com. (1. Vaso Pasha. tiranabackpacker@ hotmail.500-3. Q (singles €40.

Located on the fourth floor of the Twin Towers. QOpen 08:00 . kindly translated by the US embassy staff. 1. EB Vila 31 E-2. +355 4 223 88 51. chips and pizza. (500-700 lek). the grand wooden Toptani family house. Skanderburgers (named after the national hero) and 'Big Supreme' menus (420 lek) on the menu here. Abdi Topani 7. Italian and Asian.com January . tel. Sarajet is housed in one of the survivors. Asim Zeneli 6. vegetables and egg for 350 lek) as the standout choice. The English-language menu. tel. tel. +355 4 224 63 76. Rr. Sit in the cheap and cheerful dining section or take it away to smear grease all over your face elsewhere. noodle and beef standards. where British and Italian food is served. Strictly for drinks and a gander. (600-1200 lek). The main outlet is a large tent wedged behind the colonade at the southern end of the boulevard. Far East H-5. unforgettable even after washing it all down with their home-made raki. Fast food & Snacks Concentrations of grease can be found around the intersection of Rr.23:00. QOpen 09:00 . PAB Kolonat I-5. tel.23:00. Twin Towers.24:00. Rr. QOpen 11:30 23:00. Try lakror. dating from 1780 and looking good since its recent renovation. A favourite for expats and visitors alike. Find Da Shang Hai signposted down an small alley. QOpen 08:00 . Big Bite I-4.23:00. tel. too. PGS International 37 16. Mexican and Chinese food. Rr. +355 4 226 99 47. please Faturën ju lutem Sarajet F-5. Q Open 12:00 . tel. Gjon Muzaka 31. A large. Ask to see the carved wooden ceilings on the first floor and the small hamam. +355 4 225 70 12/+355 68 218 70 81. central. Non-stop burgers. lists a good value set menu deal as well as several fish dishes. tel. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. The menu has every thing from sushi (from 600 lek) to Indonesian satay beef and a Korean-style sizzler barbecue. Good and affordable Chinese food is offered at Tirana’s second Shang Hai restaurant. The food is fresh and delicious. Rr. Serenata E-3. See also the café reviews for healthier snacks. It's all good. Next to Hotel California. Bajram Curri. A food court inside the mall attached to the Sheraton hotel. with three cuisines on offer: Mexican. It's hot and it's busy. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. PA 77 08. For something local. S Il Pomodoro Food Court H-5. QOpen 08:30 . RESTAURANTS Viva H-4. QOpen 11:00 . Find Oda down the first alley west of the market. +355 4 224 30 38. tel. Sheshi Italia. Shang Hai F-5.22:00. QOpen 08:30 . Come on a warm night and dine al fresco in the glow of the pyramid. and in summer tables below the vines in the shady courtyard. Mihal Duri 22. +355 4 227 19 87. A French-owned culinary amalgamation with a patisserie at the front flogging bread and cakes. herbs and spices or tave me qofte. fountains and a playground. Mimi I-5. Rr. a flat pancake stuffed with green beans. while inside it's all Chinese woodwork. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit and Rr. which is of course famous for its serenades and spicy. Jul Varibova 13. Sheshi Italia. Rr. Rr. (900-1500 lek). (550-1280 lek). The set menus with 5-8 dishes are good value. Most traditional Ottoman-era houses have disappeared in Tirana. Rr. Pjetër Bogdani. Rr. The seafood specialities include calamari and shrimps. Sun 13:00 . You're greeted on the white terrace by a Japanese stone lantern overlooking a gurgling stream. Situated on one of the few streets in central Tirana still lined with old-fashioned villas. tel.23:00. Light lunch or supper accompanied by red wine here is highly recommended. Unfortunately the food is nothing special. Billionaire adds to the atmosphere by providing a restful terrace and garden where you can smell the flowers as you sip your drink or dine on mainly Italian food. +355 4 222 00 00. or try the Elbasan version. Presidenti George W. The food is honest peasant fare such as grilled meat and ribs of lamb. this pan-Asian restaurant has elements of many Oriental cultures reflected in both the design and the menu. An unusually named Chinese restaurant. an oven dish with meat and cheese. Sheraton Plaza Mall.24 RESTAURANTS to suggest a succession of appetisers and mains. QOpen 08:00 . tel. +355 4 273 08 89. tree-shaded garden beside the river. PTB With a nicely low-key decor of traditional art and costume.01:00.23:00. +355 4 225 45 71. +355 4 228 03 28.com. From Rruga Kavajës walk down Rruga Naim Frashëri and look for the sign down the the fourth alley on your right. just the way the Chinese like i t. tel.23:00. PA Asian Da Shang Hai I-4.inyourpocket. This converted house has rustic seating inside. tel. QOpen 07:00 . order the tave dheu (270 lek). moon gates and fish tanks. Home of the informal Friday night Tirana expat meeting. Part of a Greek restaurant chain. You can also get decent chips and kebabs here. (800-1300 lek). QOpen 11:00 . Bush. QOpen 09:00 . Serenata is the home of dishes from the southern Devolli region. tomatoes. with kebabs. QOpen 07:00 . Near the Xheko Imperial hotel. +355 4 227 81 41/+355 69 20 83 317. Dëshmorët e Kombit. Wandering Brits should feel right at home here in this small Albanian corner of Blighty. pork. TIYP readers recommend the Paris Brest cake. London D-4. N°51. +355 4 227 King House I-4. There's pasta and pizza at low prices and a large red building housing the culinary equivalent of the UN. (300-700 lek). tel. Rr. Chicken I-4.inyourpocket. +355 4 227 19 38. Those bored with Ronald's concoctions may like the huge four-person superpizzas. on the terrace or for take-away. (150 lek). +355 Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.23:00. Blv. Here's a simple. +355 4 225 51 27. tel. Rr. with the tave Vila 31 (an oven-baked pot of cheese. QOpen 08:00 . QOpen 08:00 . PTAB 4 225 55 59. The menu has a dazzling 126 options (plus a set of Albanian choices to lure insecure locals inside). tava kosi (280 lek) that's with yoghurt.23:00. home cooking restaurant that pleases all with good cooking and friendly service. tel.June 2010 . restaurantroyal@hotmail. (600 lek). Blv. Popular for office lunches and for a quick dinner. QOpen 12:00 . but the delicious freshly cooked rotisserie chicken is worth waiting for.23:00. A good selection of wines is available to accompany a large variety of mains. Abdyl Frashëri 16. There's friendly service and a full range of chicken. Also at (G-6) Blv. shared by four restaurants. Abdyl Frashëri. There's nothing outstanding about the King House. Dervish Hima.QOpen 11:00 . PAS Billionaire G-5. saucy and full fat food. this restaurant combines fine dining with a nice view of the main boulevard and the city skyline. Rr.22:30.24:00. B 25 Restaurant talk Waiter! A table for two Non-smoking / smoking Kamarier! Një tavvolin për dy Ndalohet duhani / Lejohet duhani The menu please Menune ju lutem I’d like to order Do doja ta bëja porosin Do you have vegetarian food? Kni ushqim vegjetarian Surprise me! Më befaso The bill. Home delivery. centred on the town of Korça.24:00.22:00.23:30. just reliably good Albanian and Italian food served in pleasant surroundings by friendly and attentive staff. Rr. (600-700 lek). found beyond a set of carved wooden pillars in a courtyard opposite the Millennium 2 cinema. Zogu I. Albania's first US-style fastfood chain comes complete with plagiarised McD logo and boxes. Good Chinese food ser ved in wonder full y chintz y surroundings. Q Open 10:00 . all available in the dining hall. AE Lulishte 1 Maji F-5/6. Q Open 24hrs. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkur tit. Tirana's other popular fast-food chain. 25/1. and behind it a faux Parisian café with mirrors and oozing red colours everywhere. BS Menu decoder Meat & Fish beef chicken lamb pork sausage veal schnitzel fish salmon sea food trout Fruits and vegetables apple banana cabbag carrot eggplant mushrooms orange peppers tomatoes Drinks beer juice wine water Mish & Peshk mish lope pulë qengji derri suxhuk mish viçi shnitcell mish peshku salmon fruta deti troftë Frutat dhe perimet mollë banane lakër karrotë patëllxhan këpurdha portokall speca domate Pijet birrë lëng verë ujë French Patisserie Française G/H-4. tel.com tirana. A charming rural-style restaurant in the big city. Rr. +355 4 225 Royal G/H-4. Abdyl Frashëri. (600 lek). Murat Toptani. spiced meatballs baked in a clay bowl. PB Mr.24:00.

Pallatet Agimi Tirane.24:00. and visit a restaurant that doesn’t do menus.24:00. There's often live music on Friday and Saturday. thankfully. What remains. just what the chef/owner decides to make that day. A fantastic setting for a very good restaurant. Rr. when we visited it was so busy that the waiters were stressed and unfriendly so perhaps it's best to come early or avoid the Vila on busy nights. Rr. excellent meat. +355 4 234 75 222 26 32. PABW 04 46. large spoons and lu tes. (700 lek). The food is traditional Albanian. Rr. al. with partying until the early hours. but also has a range of other non-steak meals. tel. The Italian food here is a cut above the rest and certainly is worth trying. Muhamet Gjollesha. Nikolla Tupe. Mustafa Matohiti. +355 Castle dining Kalaja e Petreles (Petrela Castle) Petrele.inyourpocket. this sleek first-floor steak restaurant is decked out with light wood and has a pleasant terrace overlooking the park. QOpen 12:00 . A superb-looking restaurant in an old villa. The huge fruit salad is recommended on hot days. Rr. Pirro Mani is named after the celebrity owner and has no arsonist links whatsoever. chicken jambalaya.500 lek). Famed locally for the Italian food on offer.24:00. Blvd. Jul Varibova 6. QOpen 12:00 . Right beside the dictator's old villa.23:00. squid. instead of attending to customers.inyourpocket. QOpen 12:00 . tel. +355 4 225 11 75/+355 4 225 11 78. this nicely converted villa is the largest city-centre venue with a café on the ground floor and the terrace around. tel. ext 143. QOpen 07:00 . for vegetarian viagra try the 'aphrodisiac salad'. innovative cocktails and fusion food (curry. this pleasant restaurant has great semicovered terrace seating where you can plot the downfall of the Dutch government. Il Capriccio Enjoy fresh fish from the depths of the Adriatic Sea Open daily 11am to midnight. Half an hour’s drive east of Tirana along the road to Elbasan. Over the past year or two. QOpen 12:00 . The menu has items such as the Mosaic mixed grill and sirloin Angus steak. The ser vice and mono-lingual staff requires some training. tel.26 RESTAURANTS Food with a view Ballkoni Dajtit Mount Dajti. One of the first private restaurants to open in 1991 and strategically placed near the clutch of embassies along Rr. 26/1. while inside it's all minimalist chique with delicate spotlighting. The prices of the international dishes served here are as high as the location. P Vila Logoreci I/J-3. Pallatet Agimi. medallions. (700-1200 lek).com tirana. the service can be numbingly slow. +355 68 401 10 21. PEB Park. (700-1. A glass elevator stuck on the side of the building takes you up to the terrace from where there are tables and great views in all directions. +355 4 224 Vila Metropolitan H-4.June 2010 Otium H-3. No menu here. Durrësit 79. Taiwan. Albanian and Italian dishes are available too. Set back from the street. A favourite among foreigners. QOpen 11:00 . (400-800 lek). Q Open 08:00 . Th ere are several rooms. and T-bone steaks.22:00. upper cable car station. info@greenhouse. A charmingly converted villa with seating indoors and on the terrace and balconies.23:00. Ali Demi 131. Blv. QOpen 08:00 . tel. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. The restaurant ser ves various Albanian and I talian meals.24:00.02:00. Albania Tel: 04 223332. Rr. Albania's first Japanese restaurant is so wellhidden.24:00. (600-1. +355 4 223 15 67. Rr. (400-800 lek). but the views make up for that. +355 4 225 88 60. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit.800 lek). Asim Zeneli 9.20:00. Napoli is a good spot for diplomats and other passers-by. B January . There's knowledgeable service and wifi too. Steakhouse G-4. tel. Rr. Rr. (950 lek). and serves pretty decent sushi. tel. and his kitchen dishes out fantastic appetisers and tasty variations on fresh sea fish. PAB 67/+355 69 202 98 63. Rr. tel. tel. There's a large seating area in the garden. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. Rinia Napoli D-2. then Anais with international food. and looking like any neo-rustic restaurant. Tirana's first Levant-themed restaurant has silver curtains creating an intimate atmosphere around the low tables and Lebanese specialities such as tabuleh salad on the menu. QOpen 11:30 .24:00. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit.net. Italian Casa di Pasta G-4. Named after the 1001 nights during which Scheherazade told unfinished tales to the Persian king to save herself from execution at dawn. BK Pirro Mani Rr. Mob: 0692723510 +355 4 225 93 77. Brigada e VIII. Just east of the city centre.23:00. P Mamma Rosa H-3. Admission 250 lek/ person for groups. QOpen 07:30 . tel. tempura and teriyaki dishes . Villa Amsterdam H-5. etc). Rr. sashimi. The Petrele castle restaurant has tables both outside and in the little tower. is the bathroom with a real bath where you can take refuge from this fast-changing city. Brigada VIII.02:00. while the rustic interior is also capable of holding a wedding party or two.al. PAB Japanese 4 225 82 38. QOpen 07:00 . +355 4 225 No menu Let go of those old-fashioned certainties. +35 69 317 70 84. the café section has a revolving floor (see Cafés). Bajram Curri.greenhouse. tel. But it does. that several locals have written to us to say it does not exist. +355 4 224 Amor F-1. Its scrumptious pizzas and seafood are conjured up by a chef who trained in Italy. Rr. Closed Sun. a pot stove. The open kitchen offers full views of cooks whacking lambchops into submission. QOpen 11:30 . +355 4 223 33 21/+355 69 272 35 10. Rinia Park. all cooked fresh. PB Serendipity I-4.23:30. PLBW RESTAURANTS 27 La Cantinella H-4.though the exact menu depends on which fish were netted that morning.23:00. Q Open 08:00 . Tirana’s most novel restaurant is perched on top of the 17-storey Sky Tower. tel. with Albanian and Italian food. PB One of our favourite new places. +355 4 226 74 39. It’s only a little place so booking is advisable for dinner. and a varied menu. +355 4 69 208 81 38. Yamato I-4.com. (500-900 lek). though it’s wor th asking for a table in the enclosed balcony room. (750-1300 lek). Don’t miss the chocolate mousse.23:30. Rr. There's traditional and modern art on the walls. wi th prices reflecting the effor ts needed to haul it all up the mountain.though be aware the salads feed two. superb desserts and all at reasonable prices. Otium is a deliciously unpretentious place for a great meal. Sami Frashëri 20/1. Rr. Who'll convince the UN and NGOs hogging the other lovely villas on this street to make way for progress? QOpen 19:00 . Find it near the corner with Rruga Vaso Pasha. unmarked above the Euromax supermarket in the QTU City mall. Q Open 12:00 . +355 4 222 16 66. and wines displayed along the walls. +355 4 222 35 70. but it’s well wor th visiting. QOpen 11:00 . QOpen 12:00 . the courtyard of this elegant Italian grill house is a pleasant and quiet place to try a grilled meat or Albanian speciality. (800-1. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkur tit N°5.restaurantnapoli. tel. with cosy indoor rooms and a terrace with a pond. 71 90. Rr. served with a smile. Clamber up the steps to the first floor dining room and be wowed by fast and knowledgeable staff . Inside. Bajram Curri. +355 69 207 00 82. QOpen 07:00 . and a stylish restaurant upstairs.24:00. there are tables with red-cushioned seats. this restaurant has changed name and cuisine so often that we're always writing new reviews for it. PAEB La Tavernetta H-4. our experience was marred when we were left waiting while the waiters checked Facebook and played games on the restaurant PC.200 lek). and shrimps. www. and although their efforts result in fine dishes. Lurking in a cellar below a modern high-rise lies this rustic Albanian tavern with wooden beams. www. Q Open 12:00 . accompanied by a good selection of wines. tel. Or perhaps just tuck into Albanian food and pizzas. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkur tit. Great home made pasta. Rr. PB Street views from the Noi café meals. 15 73/+355 69 268 49 52. tel. Blv.02:00. tel. The newest addition to the Taiwan entertainment complex. tel. Gjon Pali II. spinning pizza dough or preparing the "capricious fish salad". On weekends. The reasonable I talian food here is complemented by an excellent salad bar. First a Turkish place called Efendy. Opposite the Iranian embassy. P Lebanese 1001 Netë H-5. QTU City mall. QOpen 08:00 . +355 68 230 88 08. Edi spent 15 years learning the trade in Italy before starting his own venture here. +355 4 Vila Ferdinand I-4. A 1930s villa with a quiet courtyard hidden behind high hedges seems the perfect place to have Mediterranean Green House G-5. 19:00-23:00. Sky Club G/H-4. The pasta dish that TIYP had was excellent . A lovely Alpinestyle wooden cabin restaurant with excellent views over Tirana an d th e wid e surroun din gs. tel. Skenderbeg. However. tel. it has now morphed into an Italian eatery with standard pastas and steak.23:00. The outside seating area has a tropical feel to it.17:00.com . A large Italian eatery occupying half of the Taiwan complex. The menu is fairly standard. P Seafood Il Cappricio di Zio Edi G-4. call in advance to check it's not booked full. P Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.who’ll tell you there’s no menu but will make several suggestions. Sun 18:00 . all with great views of the surrounding valleys and hills. skyclub@ albaniaonline. QOpen 07:00 . (350650 lek). Rr. Logically located right opposite the Netherlands embassy building. Unfortunately.24:00. Abdyl Frashëri. Serendipity offers an irresistible combination of attractive clientele. (800 lek). One floor up. this basement restaurant specialising in Italian fish dishes is well worth a visit.24:00. Beyond the unassuming facade.

rozafa. Vaso Pasha. A gourmet fish restaurant that has some very fishy combinations indeed.smelly but good fun. 19:00-23:00. it's a great place to sample various styles of molten cheese such as raclette (dripped) and fondue (dipped. With fish and other seafood coming fresh from their own fish market across the street.24:00. but foreigners sitting inside will have a hard time understanding why a restaurant in such a fine location keeps the curtains tightly closed. Labinoti. or you could order one of the many seafood options on the menu. eagles and chickens around the lush terrace of this popular restaurant may cause you to raise your eyebrows. ALB Magic Blue H-4. There's also fondue Bourguignonne. nargil pipes and other nicknacks.it. grapes or strawberries as a starter. Rather than being perched at lofty Alpine altitudes. +355 4 226 66 66.24:00. Gjeneral Niko Pushkini. QOpen 07:00 . Rr. such as the raw fish with radish. Excellent dining in large rooms. QOpen 12:00 .23:00. Rr. calamari. QOpen 11:00 . PALBSW 70/+355 4 223 91 14. +355 4 227 35 55. PLEB 06 33.sofraeariut. and potato-cake with cod and mozzarella as a main course.com. where you cook skewered bits of meat in a pot of boiling oil . tel. Rr. Elbasanit. near the Martyrs’ Cemetery. Although Albanian food is heavily influenced by the Turks. The “Queen Mother” restaurant is a quaint wooden lodge-type building set on a hill overlooking the trees of Grand Park. +355 69 205 92 52. try the seafood buffet. Kavajës 170. Ask for the six fish dish starter (900 lek) to sample various such creations. +355 4 237 29 04. P Post-socialist slogans at the entrance into town Tirana In Your Pocket tirana. A modern seafood restaurant in the blloku fitted out rustic-style. and the place is nicely decorated with kilim carpets. Ismail Qemali 11. The cages containing Liza the bear. but they’re housed in better conditions than animals in the local zoo. some monkeys. one of the many kebab dishes. Try the Turkish pizza lahmaxhun. QOpen 10:00 . a multi-talented salad bar and gigantic pizza inhabit a customised castle on the edge of the park. Rozafa E-5. QOpen 07:00 . piled high with more tentacles and suckers that you can count. or sink your teeth into sweet sticky baklava pastries.com .23:00. The catch of the day can be inspected fresh on a bed of ice beside the entrance and you can simply choose the fish of your liking. Friday and Saturday evening. you can choose between superb cheap seafood or superb expensive seafood at the two Rozafa restaurants. +355 4 222 68 18. Decorated with old photos of quaint Helvetic towns. www. salmon and more. PGB Turkish Sofra F-2. (700-900 lek). Prices are very reasonable for the feast you'll get. PAB Vila 12 G/H-5. Rr. tel. (550-3400 lek). both located in one building. Rr.inyourpocket. Treat yourself at least once to the upmarket version (down the alley and through the wooden door on the left). which includes octopus.24:00.al. The hot choc fondant cake is a worthy dessert.22:00.16:00. tel. tel. www. tel. this Swiss-themed restaurant can be found in a series of small rooms in a basement beside the Grand hotel. szekja@yahoo. The Italian-trained chef likes to experiment with weird combinations here. shrimps. Rr. QOpen 08:00 . Luigj Gurakuqi 2. Mustafa Matohiti 12. Near the Martyrs’ Cemetery. this restaurant serving original kuzhina turke is worth the short walk west from the centre.24:00. PB Sofra e Ariut (Bear’s Lair) Rr. served in an earth-coloured space with framed bricks. Q Open 12:00 . QOpen 12:00 . 2. the elegant interiors are great for long Albanian lunches or dinners.200 lek for two). allencompassing balconies or tiered-terraces overlooking the greenery. There's live piano music every Wednesday. tel.28 RESTAURANTS Park restaurants Lining Tirana’s Grand Park are several large restaurants where you can relax in the cool fresh air and say hello to a bear. tel. Resembling a Swiss chalet. PAB Swiss Swiss Chalet H-4. It's as if the Ottomans never left. These fine purveyors of Italian and Albanian specialities. +355 4 224 86 Juvenilja Castelo J-6. or ask for traditional grilled fish or lobster.com. The terrace is great for a coffee or one of the grill or meat dishes on the menu. instruments. +355 4 225 Nëna Mbretereshë Rr.

03:00. Friend’s Book House G-3. when the place fills up on Wednesday and Saturday for live performances by local bands. there’s a Playstation corner. Rr. Ismail Qemali. and attentive staff.500 lek cup of Kopi Luwak.02:00. Rr. English breakfast and on Saturdays waffles.. The biggest attraction in ‘Black and White’ is the huge black-and-white photograph collection of Albanian artist Artur Gorishti. Rr. Also on the Durrës highway in the Praktiker DIY store. Rr... PAEBK Pastiçeri International I-4. PT Juna I-4. PBW Living Room F-5. tel. +355 4 224 70 89. specialising in tea. P Meduza H-5. and several good brands such as Glina and Tepelena are on the market. Fri. QOpen 07:00 . P al. burgers. The deep red walls provide the perfect backdrop for the hip. For literary insomniacs: a non-stop bookshop. This part is bathed in a relaxing creamy yellow glow from the overhead canopy . a cosmopolitan meeting place for locals and foreigners alike. Vaso Pasha. retreat to the first floor of the building with its living room style bar.but it’s still one of the better places to go to get your sugar-and-coffee fix.23:00. you're in a different place.stephencenter. Bush 16. QOpen 07:30 . Panini fillings include omelet.24:00. Eat/drink in. From 17:00-20:00 on weekdays. Get a shot of culture in this well-hidden artist's café. cigarette . A unique. kjo është jo legale. Join TIYP in asking restaurant managers to have at least one local brand on the menu so patrons have the choice. The children will love the small playground in the adjacent park. All this while Albania has excellent and abundant mineral water. +355 4 226 51 30/+355 67 203 32 25. Near the corner with Rr.23:30.. not aqua Order a bottle of mineral water with your meal.inyourpocket. Try to visit when Roberto. English and Australian beers are on tap. pizza. Amen! QOpen 07:00 . PB Towers. QOpen 07:00 . (600-750 lek).monarc. Sami Frashëri. Noi is a pleasant and modern ‘gourmet café’ with an amazing range of wood-roasted single-origin and blended coffee on the menu. GW Towers. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. PBW 54 24. PBW Sky Club Café G/H-4. QOpen 09:00 . www. PEBW Converse G/H-4. A good place to pick up conversation with young Tiranians. A bright café serving drinks and snacks such as sandwiches and toast. bars and clubs (and indeed workplaces) in Albania. a dimly lit lounge with ottomans and couches to flop around on. but the cocktail bar in the lush small garden spits out great drinks all week. woman Where can I find a taxi? You have beautiful eyes. pastas. There’s free wifi. B Quo Vadis H-4.com.and it’s more than that. +355 4 228 03 34.01:00. Sat. ashtray .02:00.23:00.01:00.. tel. just north of the river. this café serves a damn good cappuccino.. QOpen 07:30 . Could be the location. Recommended for a healthy snack or lunch. Sit at the bar under a ceiling with photos of Old Tirana. This helps keep the air moving Pub talk Where is the nearest bar / club? I need a. Friday and Saturday with Salsa dancing. The only thing international about this place might be your presence . friendbookhouse@yahoo.. the Bulevard is a great night option serving drinks to a thirtyish crowd on the third floor of the twin towers. QOpen 07:00 . Twin Drinks at the Steelwings biker bar holding down a 1. sweet and hearty crepes. +355 69 202 29 01. salads and baguettes. A lovely book café. café and reading room that also has a quiet study room in the basement. sandwiches.24:00. That’s also the main reason to come . cocktail . 90 lek bottomless coffee. Simon clearly reads the wrong guidebooks as Tirana's nightlife scene is not bad at all. Pjeter Bogdani 36. Beside the car park. chilled-out music.if you can find a seat. Dëshmorët e Kombit. Rr. Rr.QOpen 07:00 . The name means ‘suitable’ . Perfect for an indulgent lunch. Lebanese and international dishes is served.com. lighter . The floor of the glass box on top of Albania’s highest building revolves slowly to give a 360-degree panorama of the city. and ends at the bllok's bustling cafes. +355 68 222 07 00. PW Kuki G-3. there's a good-value lunch menu and in the evening a selection of Italian. Beer 400 lek. artists and intellectuals that visit this tiny basement 'social club' to sip coffee and play chess seem the exact opposites of the loud hairy men slamming down shots at Steelwings next door.24:00. Sited in one of the busiest areas of town by the university bookstore. QOpen 09:00 . Italiane 4.. bars and clubs. Near the main police station. You'll know when the sound gets cranked up and long-legged promo or gogo girls climb onto your table. Abdyl Frashëri 5. Wolf down tarts and various other pastries . Vesa Center.. Sun 18:00 . Blv. PABW Flex H-4.23:00. Fri. beer . Your place or mine? Where I come from. Mexican dishes. tel. tel. followed by DJ music. that’s illegal. B Mojo H-5/6. Vendi im apo I yti? Prej nga unë vij. Beer 300 lek. tel. Near the Sky Tower. Bars 42. Abdyl Frashëri. Beer 200 lek.. Rr. The restaurant (summer only) serves good pasta and fish dishes.. Rr. coffee. nardimuho@yahoo. That's when the pretty people dress up and come out in force to cram themselves on the multilevel decks overlooking the city. The grey walls are hung with Albanian modern art. QOpen 24 hrs. There's good ventilation. Durrësit. Find the friendly owners and their friends hanging out at the café section at the back. wine . and is certainly improving fast. Presidenti George W. followed by cocktails. Sat 07:00 . that is.03:00. Also on Rr. young and rich to do their thang. +355 4 224 Gregory’s Coffee H-4. Beer 100 lek. On Friday evenings the café hosts video sessions of live concerts and documentaries. tel. man . Set up by evangelical missionaries who certainly know how to run a good café. There’s a pleasant terrace and a cosy smoke-free interior with a poster of New York’s twin towers. Mojo is officially a no-smoking café even though everyone happily ignores that. followed by DJs. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit N°5. +355 4 222 35 98. +355 +355 4 225 67 50. PEBW 31 Artist Lounge H-5. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. a talented Italian artist. There are not many English-language titles on offer but you can always bring your own book or newspaper along. +355 4 222 16 66. a buffet of free snacks is offered with the drinks. Squeeze yourself into this bar at the weekend and be prepared for a singalong or even a star turn. Delicious home-made cakes and sweet chocolatey things served in a restaurant that also has various Italian dishes on he menu. Thu. pasta. birrë verë koktell cigare çakmak tabak burr grua Ku mund ta gjejë një taksi? Keni sy të bukur. The bar on the top floor of the hotel is worth mentioning for the dazzling views across town from its wrap-around terrace. When the karaoke is turned off.01:00.. www. QOpen 08:00 23:00. Pall. following the corridor on your right. Ku ndodhet klubi më I afërt? Dua një …. Rr.. tel. "This is one east European capital the stags might want to miss" wrote travel journalist Simon Calder in the UK's Independent paper. fashionable thirtyish crowd populates this fantastic lounge bar with 1960s-80s inspired music in the bllok area.24:00.com. Rr. and chances are that you’ll get sparkling water that was shipped all the way from France.inyourpocket. The somewhat oddly spelt Charl’s regularly puts on live music acts from across the region and various other events from Thursday to Saturday. salads. or the good fresh coffee they serve. +355 4 226 65 Charl’s Bistro H-4. In the evening. +355 4 tel. though service can be tediously slow when it’s busy. Although there are enough Buddha Bars in the world to start a religion. +355 68 348 54 90. tel. Beer 400 lek. Brigada VIII. Rr. recite poetry or pin your own home-made art on the walls. Noi Café Rr. QOpen 08:00 . tel.24:00.. Blv. QOpen 07:00 . Rr. QOpen 19:00 . tel. DJs and bands. NIGHTLIFE Drink ujë. this is one of Tirana’s best. Sun 07:30 . tel. Rr. PGB Bardhe e Zi H-3. +355 69 202 70 Delikatesë H-5. Hoxha Tahsim 1. A modern coffee and sandwich bar on the ground floor of the Twin Towers. Modem and comfortable. or hang out in the curious booths lining the walls. QOpen 06:00 . Closed Sun.03:00. sandwiches. We recommend ordering a coffee. Groups: admission 250 lek/person. Blv.03:00. chicken and Albanian-style meatballs and cheese. or take away. Though we don't want to encourage the bachelor party scene to spread to Albania. Rr.June 2010 . Sami Frashëri.charlsbistro. and Rr. Dëshmorët e Kombit. bright and spacious café serving fresh fruit juices and smoothies. Italy or further away – usually at a high price for both the environment and the diner’s wallet. a pint of hair gel and a clipped goatee. Ismail Qemali. There's a fine line between cafés. . The students. Gjerg j Fishta. Twin Bulevard Café G/H-4. +355 4 226 67 77. More upscale places will also serve American-style coffee (kafe filter). and the waterfall that cools drinkers in summer. +355 69 209 99 10. A popular café at the bllok’s main crossroads. The only Starbucks-type place in town so far is Gregory’s. PEB MonarC Bar F-5. QOpen 08:00 ..com. tel.23:00.. pancakes. while minimal and modern music is played on the stereo. tel.. QOpen 07:00 . 56. The Albanian economy needs all the support it can get. Indian wooden screens. Q Open 24hrs. QOpen 08:00 .com.. Book cafés 227 12 88. tel. In winter. tirana.the coffee and cakes on offer are pricey and no better than those at ground level. QOpen 08:00 . An eclectic. Juna is busy all day long.24:00. Themistokli Gërmenji. croons his evergreens on weekend nights. right behind the Friends Book House. Literally a cool bar. Bring the kids. Rr. Sun 17:00 24:00. and some venues that we have listed as cafés or bars are known to morph into clubs on weekend nights. www. For something really special try 90. PB 4 224 73 53. The fun starts with the lively xhiro (mass evening stroll). +355 4 227 45 11. just relax and enjoy the modern Albanian art on display. PTAGBW tirana. PJBW Tirana In Your Pocket Stephen Center Café E-5/6. Big blurry photos and big lamps set the scene for Mojo’s hip crowd.you're out in the open here. fresh juice. tel. Rr. Epër7shme G-5. Ismail Qemali 12. unfortunately with very few English-language titles in the shop section.com Flares H-4. as after a hot summer's day the large rooftop lounge area catches the evening breeze. justfruits@hotmail.com January . though it's the cocktails and daily DJ parties that interest the majority of visitors. Rr. A pleasant enough bar. PAEB Buda Bar H-4. QOpen 08:00 . Sat 09:00 . Sami Frashëri. Ismail Qemali 27. Inspired by Tirana and the letter B (note the shape of the café).22:30. but if you go right to the back.03:00. Rr. Indonesian coffee made from beans that have passed through the bowels of a civet (an animal that looks like a weasel).. tel. Overlooking the street from the third floor of the Vesa complex. Beer 300 lek. There's live music on Wednesday. this is certainly a nice addition to Tirana's nightlife scene. and this will help in a small way. . Mustafa Mahotiti. tel.30 CAFÉS All cafes and bars offer espresso (kafe ekspres) or Turkish coffee (kafe turke). Ismail Qemali 12. +355 4 223 47 48. free snacks come with the drinks. QOpen 07:30 .02:00. electricity permitting. A large bar in the wacky pallati me birila building. acquiring a ‘strong complex flavour’ along the way. Jul Variboba 2.

+355 68 206 10 88. Rr. Gjin Bue Shpata. QOpen 17:00 . tel. QOpen 08:00 . Hidden deep in the bllok area near the Conad supermarket. Only drinks are served. tel. cognac and over 30 types of whiskey. EB Read more reviews at http://tirana. tel. +355 4 227 88 87. PE Rockwood H-5. enter at the 'Midnight Passion' sign opposite the Raiffeisen bank and head up the dangerously narrow staircase at your own risk. Rr. B Wine Spirit I-3. Twin Towers. and palm leaf parasols shade the cocktail-sipping patrons from the Albanian sun. The karaoke starts at 22:30. with a good selection of whiskeys to fuel the night. QOpen 09:00 . quiet music and a good selection of wines to sample.com Jazz Clubs Imagine H-6. unmarked. A wine-lovers’ café run by a sommelier . wild parties and loud rock music played every Wednesday. Pjetër Bogdani 8. +355 69 207 35 90. Rr. Enoteca Joan H-4. +355 4 224 36 38.17:00. though beer costs more when bands play. A great bar dedicated to recorded and live jazz music on the ground floor of the Vesa Center building. QOpen 10:00 . Papa Gjon Pali II.32 NIGHTLIFE Wine bars The latest trend in Tirana. The most upmarket wine bar in town can be found on the first floor here. QOpen 08:00 . sophisticated interiors. Sat 17:00 .com Tirana In Your Pocket . tel. QOpen 08:00 . Themistokli Gjërmenji. On our visit. Filled with students and others on most nights. Rr.23:00.24:00. tel. +355 69 208 84 81. PB film lover's den of delights.what could possibly be better? Sample a large variety of mainly Italian wines. Yum.warble along to your favourite Albanian or foreign song together with the Magic 4 group (www. The usual drinks are served.24:00. ask to see if they're available again. QOpen 08:00 . Admission on concert nights 1. +355 67 210 Bonaparte G/H-4. At 22:30 on Friday and Saturday nights. and the selection of Italian.com).steelwings-albmc. 19:00-24:00. Vesa Center. this is one of Tirana’s better wine bars. Sat 08:00 .02:00. +355 69 28 44 24. tel. Rock 'n Roll I-6. One of Tirana's best bars has a lot of wood. of which Kajoshi is worth a try.24:00. covered in old radio station logos. Rr. in this small venue that’s set back from the road. with black and white photos of him and other famous musicians lining the walls. This student bar runs on love and dedication rather than on permits. with a dark wood interior with old carpets and a grand piano. Papafingo H-3. and there’s a good variety of beer. +355 4 228 01 42. Overlooked by a portrait of Napoleon. budgies in a cage and a tree lit up pink.01:00. A café and bar behind Enver Hoxha's old villa that really comes alive during the Friday and Saturday night karaoke sessions . QOpen 07:00 . seafood) and on Friday and Saturday evenings there’s live tinkling on the piano. this rocking bar full of leather-clad motorbike enthusiasts is decorated with all the usual Americana. A small and friendly bar on the ground floor of a tall office building (also conveniently housing the IYP offices). very popular with locals and foreigners alike. Abdyl Frashëri 5. Their classic Tirana Rock Café T-shirts sold out in no time. +355 69 260 06 57. Blv. wine. Rr. (600-900 lek). Steelwings (Harley Davidson Bar) G/H-4. Papafingo is Albanian for attic. A Alcora G/H-4. Official home of the Steelwings Albania Motorcycle Club and easily located by the multitude of cool rides parked outside. where surfboards stand in the sand. Tirana Rock I-4.23:00. Rr. Mercifully. a Guernica painting. just honest blues. Food on offer includes traditional tava and qofte meatballs. A small bar with classic green and red wallpaper and a great atmosphere. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit.04:00.01:00. QOpen 08:00 . Imagine is pleasant enough for some late-night drinking. no house music is played here. Ismail Qemali 29/1. Dëshmorët e Kombit. N°11/1. Andon Zako Çajupi. Dervish Hima.cocktails and dozens of whiskeys available. QOpen 17:00 . a ropey ship-theme dominates the two-storey interior. with DJs sometimes dropping by to spin their discs. Rei Jazz Club I-4. tel. There’s Italian food on offer (pasta. serving endless coffees by day and playing rock and other music styles at night. a typewriter on a stool and a few antique radios scattered around. Tiki I-4.02:00. French and other foreign wines is complemented by a selection of Albanian reds. EB Stylus Club Marriott H-4. Fri. Blv. Visit on Thursdays for the unplugged sessions or on weekend nights for live rock and country music. while house and R&B DJs take over on Friday and Saturday. QOpen 07:00 . Sun 18:30 . and is set in a basement opposite the Millennium 2 cinema. Admission is free. 43 57. Sun 17:00 . One of Tirana's cooler bars. Rr. Rr. +355 69 202 23 31. Abdyl Frashëri. +355 69 407 47 03. Vaso Pasha. the admission fee charged on these nights includes a drink. Perlat Rexhepi. but is at its best when live rock music is played on Fridays and Saturdays. and it's indeed found hidden. Rr.inyourpocket. A rock bar with a homage to the late great John Lennon. Friday and Saturday. but it's a fun place to share dirt-cheap drinks (Birra Korça 150 lek) with the studying masses. as they should be. PE tel. tel. com. The locals come here for the see-and-be-seen factor and nip coffee and wine or taste the antipasta dishes. Sat 08:30 . Snacks are served. tel. A popular and stylishly upmarket wine bar on the fourth floor of the Twin Towers complex. Radio H-4.01:00. There’s a very nice terrace with views of the treetops. Fri. and the owners Tani and Dani stress that everyone is welcome. Rr. +355 4 226 54 42.inyourpocket. www. PE tirana. local and foreign artists play live. Find it in an apartment building set back from the street. +355 68 401 78 15. tel. It's a very friendly place. A mature crowd of culture vultures can be found sitting eating and drinking at tables amidst hundreds of magazine photos of movie icons and scenes. Noel is appropriately owned by the director of the local film institute. visitors can get sozzled on a dizzying array of quality French wines. a 2005 Chateau Lagasse. on the top floor of a nondescript building. it's a relaxed place to listen to chilled music and chat. The walls are lined with wine bottles. as are Cuban cigars that may be smoked here. Closed Sun. QOpen 11:30 .02:00. tel. Rr. magic4.02:00.01:00.02:00. Wednesdays sees bands play live ere.05:00. Noel F-5. Murat Toptani.4mg. Ismail Qemali. we were treated to a delicious dry and fruity Bordeaux wine. Fri.500 lek. tel. Surf's up at the tropical-style Tiki Bar. Rr. country and the odd rock 'n roll song. as well as some great Italian and French dishes. Exclusive Armagnac brandy is also served at €1500 a bottle or a mere €150 per glass.

Fri. www. foliebar@gmail. cleared away an old bazaar). 80m-high buildings accentuating the core tirana. and the crowd dancing away the night in this first-floor bar must be deaf for days after the par ty. Dress up.com. of the city. Admission 300 lek. Rr. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit.myspace. There are also usually a few temporary art exhibitions going on. this gallery has seen a comeback since mayor Edi Rama's election. paintings and a very sexy statue of a factory worker. +355 4 227 47 39. Kavajës. Pyramid (International Culture Centre) G-5. of course).June 2010 . Pjetër Bogdani. follow our short city walk (see page 36). but the daily pazari i ri ('new market') truly captures the spirit of the country in a messy explosion of colour. Currently it's being renovated to house a theatre. www. beautiful bronze-age jewellery. th ou gh lackin g pub grub. Rr. tell the cabbie it's near Profarma. as it's popularly known. +355 69 208 77 33. Blv. Fri. At the weekend the DJs come out and do their thing competing against the live bands at Charl's Bistro across the street. it looks like Tirana's main square will finally be hip. PB Sharm Club I-5. tel. Find the museum above the Raiffeisen bank on the first floor of the tall business centre 500m from Skanderbeg Square. Rr. B Irish Bar Tirana H-4. offices.regencycasino. tel.com. from pottery and animal statuettes to arrowheads and jewellery. visiting the Et’hem Bey Mosque and the National History Museum before getting a coffee in the bllok area. 35 Essential Tirana Tirana’s sights are quite low-key. Early morning is the best time of day to witness Balkan-style trading and haggling. the place became a conference center and disco (called The Mummy.myspace. tel. cheeses. wi th several Irish b eers on offer. Pjeter Bogdani. In front of the building. lollipop@gmail. Today this building contains the Opera and the National Library. Rr. +355 4 224 90 26. Sat 22:00-04:30. Vaso Pasha. Archeology buffs who aren't satisfied by the finds on display at the National History Museum will find even more fragments of various finds here. Casinos Regency Casino G-4. with occasional stage shows and live music. sweaty moves on the dance floor and ruptured eardrums. Fri.03:00. Chinese experts had to be called in to finish the job. Sheshi Italia. Sharm is a disco club done up in outrageous colours and materials (think glass floors. tel. +355 69 337 02 01. wines and raki throughout small squares and snaking alleyways. including Greek amphorae. www. The mosaic on the facade of the National History Museum represents the flow of Albanian history. Tirana's main square.com Mosaic fragment at the Shëng jin Church ruin Tirana In Your Pocket tirana. Folie has burst on the scene as Tirana’s best new club. opened in 1988 as a museum dedicated to the Albanian dictator-cum-pharaoh Enver Hoxha. www. with a striking Socialist Realist depiction of happy young people on a harvest campaign.inyourpocket. Rinia Park. The 12m-high dynamic white statue of Mother Albania. Q Open Fri. spearheads. Thoroughly looted in 1997. Watch the website and posters for their themed nights.24:00. E xpect friendl y students. Rr. Tirana and Mt. Although the building needs some work.venuedanceclub.02:00. Dajti are spread out panoramically before you. Lollipop H-4. Rr. Sunday free. or dance the dance to the live music occasionally planned on Saturdays. Sheshi Avni Rustemi. Admission 100 lek. tel. the chief Soviet engineer on the project gathered up all the blueprints and left the country.net. Sat 10:00 . After the regime collapsed. Tirana's first private museum consists of the 800-object Mezuraj family collection of which a changing selection is on display. An achingly trendy club for Tirana's coolest people. Millennium Skanderbeg Square (Sheshi Skënderbej) E-4.05:00. the Et‘hem Bey Mosque and Skanderbeg's statue. QOpen 09:00 . tel. This cemetery holds the remains of 900 partisans who fought for Tirana in WWII. Taiwan. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. bring ID and be older than 21 to get in. The pyramid. Starting with the empty spot to the west of the National History Museum. Sun Business Centre. PE WHAT TO SEE Raum H-4. A rocking dance club with a rather strange name playing house and dance music. The bell's metal comes from thousands of bullet cartridges.34 NIGHTLIFE Zero 42 H-4. Started in 1958. Blv. QOpen 08:00 . There are also various archaeological artefacts on display. with a green and pedestrianised main square. There's a terrific party atmosphere and cheap drinks. fish and meat. fired off during the lawless 1990s. the Peace Bell installation was made in 1999 as a memorial to peace by the children of Shkodra. there's a good hall devoted to realist socialist art. Other sights here include the imposing red-brick National Bank. the garden outside has recently been beautifully restored. Martyrs' Cemetery (Varrezat e Dëshmorëve) Rr. +355 68 Pubs tastic Irish bar in Tirana's bllok area. +355 4 226 71 96. Clubs Folie F-5. tel. but the Communists made it absolutely massive (and in the process. children under 12 free. cheap cock tails. QOpen 08:00 . Admission free. with lots of brushed steel. the club has a fantastic outdoor terrace area too. Sun. and playing the usual house hits to a happy crowd.com/lollipoptirana. But when Albanian-Soviet relations deteriorated. fresh produce and trash. PAE Main sights Central Market (Pazari i ri) E-5. the building was reportedly the most expensive ever erected in Albania.museum.14:30.com. Dëshmorët e Kombit. 4th century weights. Closed Mon. sofas in vivid red and blinding white and polka dots on the wall.24:00. tel. it housed King Zog‘s puppet parliament. people.com/foliebar. Museums & Galleries Archaeological Museum (Muzeu Arkeolog jik) I-5. vegetables. If time allows you to take in some culture.al. Designed by Hoxha's daughter Pranvera. The square was large even before World War II. Th ere are T V screens sh owin g spor ts. Closed Sat. The club is northeast of the centre near Rruga Qemal Stafa. www. down cocktails and talk the talk. +355 4 223 39 75. Enver Hoxha used to be buried at her feet until he fell from grace in 1991. Two rooms are dedicated to Albanian paintings and sculptures. Recent plans envision a complete makeover of Tirana's city centre over the next years. Elbasanit. Th e b est thin g ab ou t the bar is the buzzing atmosphere and the pleasant ou tside seating area. QOpen 10:30 . Apart from an impressive selection of medieval icons. Walk to the rear of the building to find some discarded but still defiant Communist-era partizan statues clenching their fists at the sky. the stalls display a dozen varieties of olives. Sat 08:00 . Sadik Petrela 20. From the heights of the cemetery.18:00. How loud can a student bar get? Raum does i ts best to pu t this to the test. The casino inside the Taiwan complex has 20 gaming tables and 250 slot machines. the pompous Palace of Culture was built with Soviet assistance. inaugurated in 1972. Q Open Fri. apartments and a cinema multiplex. Small fruit and vegetable stalls can be found across the city. A fan- Mezuraj Museum (Mezuraj Muze) E-3. enter on the right side of the building. is that vast expanse of asphalt where you‘ve got to dodge both Mercedes and plastic kiddie cars. Venue Dance Club Rr. Closed Sun. Join the in-crowd to sip wine. Q Open 08:00 . watches over the graves in a windswept gown.sharm-club. Art Gallery (Galleria e Arteve) F-4/5. A short drive on the bus to Sauk. Sat 08:00 . but at least these chicks didn't grow up in our Guantanamo poultry farms. Q Open 09:00 . Sheshi Skënderbej. Strictly a house and dance music venue. Bar & Night club adresa: Rruga Murat Toptani Kompleksi. and a plate from the sunken Italian warship 'Po'. tel. A popular and very sleek black-and-white lounge bar decorated with photos of blond beauties. Rr. Just east of the Sheraton. Sat 22:00-03:00. +355 69 210 13 13.13:00. and therefore the must-sees can nearly be counted on one finger. Animal rights activists won't like the sight of bunches of live chickens slung over bicycle handlebars. Murat Toptani. Beer 400 lek. Playing ‘selected music for good people’ in an extravagant three-storey space with plenty of glass balconies for making yourself seen. Sheshi Nënë Tereza. w w w. . near the ring road.inyourpocket. Apart from fruit. QOpen 10:00 . The Puppet Theater has a surprising past: before World War II. 17:00 .03:00. Set beside the Millennium cinema.20:00. and now hosts a varied collection that's worth browsing through. +355 4 222 65 41. mezuraj. padded walls and Ionian pillars). new shops. Pjeter Bogdani 32. PE 301 21 13. With a large outdoor space for cooling down on warm nights. with busts.17:00.com January .

About all that's left of the fortress above ground is a 6m-high Ottoman-era wall. Repeated looting in the 1990s has robbed the museum of many artefacts. Catholic Church (Kisha Katolike) F-3. modular home on the corner of Rr. while the museum ends with a harrowing exhibition about Albania's gruesome labour camp system and the thousands of men and women who were swallowed by it.com tirana.000 courageous people dared to attend and remarkably the police did not interfere.17:00. QOpen 10:00 . Closed Sun. festivals and fairs. The museum shop is an excellent place to shop for traditional crafts. the bllok (block) area. will take you past Tirana’s highlights in a flash. V. Shëngjin Church Mosaic (Mozaiku i Tiranës) E-2. is the President’s Palace. Maybe it’s the latter that gives the building a weird resemblance to a sports stadium. completed by the locals and extended to 35m in 1928.albmuseum. Brightly lit at night. +355 4 222 37 01.it was closed and turned into a cinema. Under construction. It reopened as a church in 1990. Sheshi Skenderbej. In 1967 . Fortress of Justinian (Kalaja) F-5. and for a while thereafter it housed parliament. not even Hoxha’s remains could evade the judgement of history. The collection of villas here. housing ministries and the town hall. it was for long the highest building in town. and a little further the Palace of Congresses. The walk described below. impressive enough by Western standards. and sits in the area of skinners and leather workers. In late 2008. the Catholic Church of St. After the regime collapsed. National History Museum (Muzeu Historik Komthe views of the city centre from the top are worth the climb. then. Left derelict. This türbe. The Orthodox Church of the Holy Annunciation was built in 1964.orthodoxalbania. pass Et’hem Bey Mosque towards the elegant government buildings at the end of the square. Here you arrive at the ‘pyramid’. Beyond Rruga Ismail Qemali you’ll pass the Hotel Rogner Europapark. QOpen 09:00 . and you can find some of Tirana’s last Commie statues huddled in a group behind the building. united JvM Churches Blv.12:00. There are some English texts but it's best to bring an Albanian for a better understanding. 17:00-19:00.June 2010 . Presidenti George W. the Palace now hosts concerts. An excavated Byzantine-era church ruin that was only discovered in 1972 boasts Tirana's oldest artworks: mosaics with geometric patterns and depictions of poultry and fish. when all diplomatic relations were broken off. in front of the Fine Arts Gallery. hidden behind trees. Zhan D`Ark. This building served as the Soviet embassy until 1961. House of the Dervish Khorosani D-4. it used to be closed off to traffic in evenings .probably the last place in Europe where he was thus honoured. It consists of eight classical columns linked by arches. www. Built in 1865. The threestory. Originally built for Party congresses. Luarasi. www. Orthodox Cathedral F-4. During the communist era. the massive new Orthodox cathedral currently looks like a nuclear power plant but will assume a more church-like look when it’s finished in 2010. Tirana In Your Pocket tirana. which is now a government residence. A statue of Lenin once stood on Blv. You can't miss the gargantuan mosaic on the facade . +355 4 226 14 58. this pretty mosque is right on the city's main square. who ruled Tirana in the early 19th century.it represents the development of Albania's history with everyone from Illirians to partisans represented.inyourpocket. Find the house in a small courtyard 100m beyond the French cultural institute. Rr. On your right. It was used to get agricultural produce and livestock across the Lana River to the markets. The grand boulevard leading south from here was the brainchild of the Italian Fascists. Marie was a gift of Franz Josef. Take a look at the frescoes outside and in the portico which depict trees. which was until a few years ago buried beneath illegally built bars and pizzerias. Uncle Joe’s head was carted away before the fall of the regime at the end of 1990. The best place to get more information about Albania’s totalitarian years is the National History Museum which has a large hall dedicated to the period. making it hard to miss. Cathedral of St. The municipality reclaimed the area. 14:00-18:00. tel. fenced off and concealed behind pine trees. The fortress the place where the main east-west and north-south roads crossed. eventually becoming a rubbish tip. Rr. Tirana's landmark central sight is the clock tower from 1822. Starting underneath the mosaic of the National Museum on Skanderbeg Square. Sheshi Sken- Tomb of Kaplan Pasha (Tyrbe e Kapllan Pasha) On Skanderbeg Square Just over 15 years ago. Watch out . Closed Mon.com. all Albania was a living Stalinist themepark. whose green banks were also crammed with illegal buildings until order was restored. Admission free. It honours Kaplan Pasha. The Orthodox Church of Albania first became autocephalous in 1937 and again in 1992. +355 4 222 34 46. without permission from the authorities. winter afternoons: 16:00-19:00. At the very end of the boulevard stands the Polytechnic University. empty square at the end of the boulevard is Sheshi Nënë Tereza (Mother Teresa Square). covered in vines. To the left is the Archaeological Museum. but a few relics are still left over (including the entrance fee you pay at the border to get into this amusement park). waterfalls and bridges . During official demonstrations and parades. Rr. Sheshi Skenderbej. informacioni@albmuseum. who held parades here during World War II. and formed the heart of Tirana. A corridor leads past a soot-blackened candle room to where the graves of Hatixhe and her family members can be seen. tel. but it remains the best place in Albania to tank up on history and to view beautiful finds from the many archeological sites across the country. Originally buried with honours in the Martyrs’ Cemetery. WHAT TO SEE bëtar) E-4. Party leaders stood on the balcony here and waved to the masses below. 16:00-18:00. Unfortunately there's little in the way of explanations.com January . Kavajës Ottoman Tirana derbej. especially women. Sun 10:00 . absolutely dazzled the average Albanian once this area was opened to the public. On your right is Rinia Park.slippery when wet. Dervish Hatixhe. Across the street stood a bust of Joseph Stalin . the mosque reopened as a house of worship in 1991. each hall covers one of the stages in the development of the Albanian nation.motifs rarely seen in Islamic art. Rr. Barrikadave. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit and Rr. It's now restored to its former glory and is used by pedestrians again. 10. but this symbolical de-Stalinisation came too late to save the leaders. There's a shady café terrace in the garden. and with popular support bulldozed the buildings in order to restore the park. Rr. The disproportionately large. it can be seen from the far end of Rr. originally erected by the Italian Fascists. Admission 300 lek. tel. and Clock Tower (Kulla e sahatit) F-4/5. the Austro-Hungarian emperor. a boldly modernist building of mirrored glass and dynamic horizontal lines. Cross the next street (Rruga Myslym Shyri) and on your left is the Fine Arts Gallery. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. some from the church iconostasis. trash-strewn and half-sunk into the pavement and lit only by a blue neon lamp for many years.’ for the monthly 80 lek bonus they supposedly got for snitching on their countrymen). The Fine Arts Gallery has some Socialist Realist statues and paintings that are worth a look. Naim Frashëri. Orthodox Church (Kisha Orthodokse) F-2. tel. the Enver Hoxha Memorial (the pyramid) was built in his honour. was off-limits to the public and cordoned off by armed guards. In fact. Tirana’s Catholic cathedral looks somewhat bland on the outside save for the statue of St Paul perched on the roof. The feared Sigurimi ran labor camps for political prisoners and maintained a network of informers (known as ‘80 lek men. On her death in 1798 a tekke was founded near her turbe (grave). Teqeja Dervish Hatixhe C-4. Murat Toptani. Dëshmorët e Kombit stood the headquarters of the Sigurimi (state security police). Started off by Et`hem Bey. Worker statues of Tirana. Take your shoes off before entering the inner room. Perhaps the only real sight in Tirana. +355 4 223 50 95. during the rule of King Zog. And a massive gilded statue of Hoxha was erected on Skanderbeg Square . Inside. On your right. but closed in 1967 and was then used to house the Tirana Sports Club. 151. A large Ottoman-era konak house surrounded by a lovely garden and a high wall. Rr.you can still see the raised pedestal. tel. Rr. while the high main room has been converted into an art gallery. an event long used to demark the closing time of the formerly adjacent market place. These were built in the 1930s. Durrësit when entering the city.inyourpocket.when all religious activity in Albania was banned . nursing people through a cholera epidemic.what bliss that would be now. Zhan D’Ark. dates from 1817. Rr. and Hoxha’s longstanding cult of personality was over. when a German-made clock was also installed.17:00. Q Open Mon 09:00-13:00. it is now to be renovated and graciously shielded by the concave wall of the high-rise building currently under construction next to it. Hotel Dajti. This was the residential area of Party leaders. which was once the Communist Party headquarters. genizah@albmail. Paul (Katedralja e Shen Palit) G-5.36 WHAT TO SEE City walk Tirana’s most significant buildings are concentrated along one thoroughfare: the Boulevard of the Martyrs (Bulevardi Dëshmorët e Kombit). on the right. QOpen 08:00 . Tanners' Bridge (Ura e tabakëve) F-6. +355 4 223 46 55. 37 Communist sights Et'hem Bey Mosque F-4. archaeologists uncovered the extensive fortress foundations that will soon be incorporated into the pedestrianised street. Dëshmorët e Kombit. Just past the next crossing on your left is the Prime Minister’s Residence. +355 4 224 86 91.org. Hoxha was dug up in 1992 and unceremoniously filed away in Kombinati Cemetery in west Tirana. from Skanderbeg Square to the Polytechnic University. QOpen 09:00 . Thu 09:00-13:00. The Lana was rerouted in the 1930s and the bridge was neglected. Rr. Nicely exhibited in a little park and protected by a makeshift roof.com. next to the ugliest new business centre in townis a small park with the busts of the three Frashëri brothers. named for the nun who was arguably the most famous Albanian of the 20th century. A pretty 19th century wooden building set in a small courtyard. Closed under communist rule. Ismail Qemali was dictator Enver Hoxha’s villa. The shadow of the tower strikes the mosque at sunset. This elegant Ottoman stone footbridge was once the main connection between Tirana and the highlands to the east. It miraculously survived the communist era and is still visited by people of varying religions. It later became the venue for the locals’ xhiro (evening stroll). On the right is the former Party Committee building. 28 Nëntori. Note Mother Teresa and Pope John Paul II featured in the stained glass windows. One hall focuses on the years around the Second World War and the resistance movements. Q Open 08:30-12:30.15:00. When this fortress was built in the 6th century. Kavajës. +355 4 224 32 92. tel. Behind the Ministry of the Interior on Blv. F-5.17:00. Albania was but an outpost on the western fringe of the Byzantine Empire. there are also various stones. intersection with Blv.com. but it has a quite nice interior with impressive concrete architecture. the Art Academy. A little obscure but well worth a look if you're in this part of town: look for the Hallall pizzeria on the northern end of the street. or tomb. Its imposing stone façade certainly seems better fitted for reviewing goose-stepping soldiers from than for studying in. scattered around the site. Bush. Walk across the next wide streets (Bulevardi Zhan D’Ark. most of the ‘attractions’ have disappeared. and walk 100 metres west. After Hoxha’s death. Going further down the paths on either side of the university whisks you out of urban Tirana and into the Grand Park. Rr. Bulevardi Bajram Curri) and perhaps without noticing you’ve crossed the Lana River. tel. It was dramatically toppled by demonstrators in 1991. Construction of the 'Xhamia e Haxhi Ethem Beut' mosque started in 1794 and was finished in 1821 by Et'hem Bey (who evidently got all the credit). Services resumed in 1990. Dedicated to the female Bektashi Islamic saint Dervish Hatixhe who was the Tirana Nightingale. Next to the gate is an octagonal türbe holding the graves of three babas. Galeria Shijaku (Sali Shijaku House) B-5. Admission 100 lek. Since then. The event was a milestone in the rebirth of religious freedom in Albania.

est statue of Skopje-born but ethnic Albanian Nënë Tereza or Mother Teresa stands in the southeast corner of the square named after her. Though usually skipped by most visitors. Q Open 09:00 . some of them buried at this site. The Palace of the Brigades. open 08:00 . silver filigree jewellery. This statue was erected to honor the many Albanian partisans who gave their lives fighting the fascists. A short Botanical gardens (Kopshti Botanik) . Tirana's botanical garden is a pleasant 15-hectare area on the slopes to the southwest of the centre. if you’ve already been to Berat and Gjirokaster.not until 1478 (after Skanderbeg’s death) did the Ottomans succeed in capturing the citadel. The inmates are kept in a small block that is di vided into ten cells. We've heard of plans to overhaul the zoo. Rinia Park G-4. Albanians consider him not only the father of their nation. At one time. Black Cave (Shpella e Zeze) For a delightful (half-)day Zoo (Kopshti Zoolog jik Tiranë) Grand Park. which has some intriguing crumbling concrete platforms sticking out of it and is surrounded by pleasant parkland and a few restaurants. Those guys hanging out around the monument in the morning are not WWII buffs but day labourers waiting for work. From the local bar in Pelumbas village it’s a two-kilometre along a well-prepared path along the Erzen River canyon to the cave entrance. The castle was used during Skanderbeg’s war against the Turks. also known as Skanderbeg in English and Skenderbej in Albanian. +355 4 37 91 11/+355 69 230 22 15 (shuttle bus). Until a few years ago. who helped catalyse the Albanian national awakening in the late 19th century.20:00). trip away from the city. Near to the zoo. folk costumes. get out and see some of the impressive landscapes in the surrounding area. now converted to a church) and the lovely Dollma teqe. As Kruja is just 30 minutes from the airport. Sami was a radical agitator for an independent Albanian republic. with round towers at the corners. one of Albania's most revered historical figures. It weathered many sieges. A free shuttle service is available from the terminus of the Porcelan bus from the city centre. but Skanderbeg's legacy preserved the Albanian national identity throughout 500 years of Ottoman rule. Admission 50 lek. The statue was unveiled in 1968. The park is now the proud focus of the evening xhiro. tel. parking at the restaurant by the river. . +355 69 208 8138. head for the restaurants at the upper end of the citadel.inyourpocket. is the only historical figure whom all Albanians agree was a national hero. while at the back the gap in the broken fence seems an ideal escape rou te for th e animals wh en the locks finall y rust through. narrow and winding past high courtyard walls like they did 500 years ago. apparently for being a sort of island in the park.dajtiekspres. the Grand Park is a haven from all the traffic and dust. When you’ve had enough of dust. Only by the end of the 12th century was the citadel completed. guiding and a traditional meal. his chin resting against the wall.when you see the sign indicating it’s 150 metres to the left you know it’s still about a kilometre. bronze and iron ages. at the end of which you’ll find Tirana Zoo and a few enterprising car wash businesses using up the lake water. Exhibits include 19th-century folk dress. Presidenti George W. Skanderbeg Statue E/F-4. the Austrian-built Dajti Express cable car on the outskirts of Tirana is a fun ride. The park is unfor tunately not free of trash. Visi ting Tirana's zoo is a fairl y depressing experience. Rinia Park in the city centre was a disgraceful mess of illegal constructions. Just down the hill is the excellent small Ethnographic Museum (tel. 47 km north of Tirana.com tirana. 39 Grand Park (Parku i Madh) K-5. which was an observation and signalling post. The friendly caretaker will take you on a whirlwind English-language tour of the rooms. you may be disappointed with the humble nature of this town. A mod- Kruja Kruja. Outdoor Albania (see travel agents) was instrumental in opening up this cave for visitors. when thousands of Tiranians stroll around to meet up and chat with friends. to fish. However. it houses about 1400 species of plants.14:00. Getting to Kruja: A taxi will cost 2000 . Kruja thus became a symbol of national resistance . QOpen 08:00 . twisting up through the forest and Kruja town. +355 No trip to Tirana is complete without a trip out of Tirana.com January . but this may change after the long-announced renovation of the park.20:00. Abdyl was leader of the Prizren League. Sheshi Nënë Tereza.inyourpocket. stands at the edge of the park along Rr.com. Q Open 08:00 . bu t there's been li ttle action till now. One of Albania’s best-preserved castles. On a clear day you can see all the way to Kruja. Cable car going up Mount Dajti Tirana In Your Pocket tirana. you’ll end up near Tirana Lake (romantically known by locals as ‘the artificial lake’). go straight through this town and stay on the main road. Educated at Harvard. The bus costs 150 lek. Reach the park by walking up the path to the west of the university building. Noli was a writer and Orthodox bishop. 15 km southeast of Tirana. laid out in a triangle. built to honour the man otherwise known as Skanderbeg. To the left of the citadel‘s main entrance is the Gjerg j Kastrioti Museum (200 lek. Wander around and you’ll come across the old citadel hamam (baths. Swooping over pastures. but also the man who saved all Europe from the Ottoman Empire. One is the well-tended cemetery for the British troops who died fighting the Germans in WWII. Elbasanit and was named for the partisans who captured it in WWII. admission 200 lek) which displays the beautiful interior of a traditional Albanian house around 1800. it is off limits to the public. Fist upraised. Find the zoo's unmarked entrance gate on the square at the end of the Grand Park dam.bring a torch. Th e pens are small. If you’re driving. Mother Teresa statue I-5. open 09:00 . The bedrag gled golden eagles . One of the few original structures remaining is the clock tower. tel. In his spare time he translated Shakespeare and Cervantes into Albanian. exactly 500 years after Skanderbeg's death. During the city’s cleanup.3000 lek (negotiate this beforehand). where a guard hands out hardhats .22:00 (winter 08:00 . 15:00 . a monkey gazes at the ceiling. is touted as a good daytrip from the capital. despite its setting and shopping possibilities.38 WHAT TO SEE Tirana parks s troll s ou th of c entral Tirana. Admission free. A li ttle fur ther into the park along the pond. representing about a third of the Albanian flora. until you see signs marked Kalaje (fortress). surrounding it are walls from the Byzantine period. Closed during strong wind. drive east along the road to Elbasan and turn off at the ‘theatre’ sign. Follow the Shkodra road from Tirana turn right into Fushe Kruje (famous for the George Bush disappearing watch act). garbage and shady dealings. and does regular daytrips (€30/25) to the area which include transport. Dëshmorët e Kombit. the 4km route offers great views of the mountain and the city. bu t i t's a stepladder. Part of Tirana University's Faculty of Natural Sciences.yes. and AT some locals still think The Grand Park lake they can drive and park their cars on the pedestrian paths. This more than 3m tall. an invigorating walk and some ancient history. ending at the edge of Dajti picnic field near the top of the mountain. paintings and exhibits (mostly replicas) presenting Skanderbeg’s struggle against the Ottomans.13:00. it can easily be visited in the morning for some last minute shopping before you catch your flight. QOpen 11:30 . bu t th e finan cial challenges of th e insti tu tion are evident. fighting mad. When you’re done shopping and sightseeing. The spidery white building that looks like it could be the lair of some James Bond villain is actually one of Tirana’s best attractions. 053 22 225. his sister Mamica lived here and defended the castle. one street of quaint shops with windows full of antiques. Their sacrifice was long suppressed from the historical record. To reach Pelumbas village (in Ibë municipality). a Bektashi temple building with impressive decorations. along the road to Elbasan. A taxi from the city centre to the lower station should cost about 500 lek. There you can hike in the lush forests. Dajti Ekspres Cable Car (Teleferik) Linza. featureless and clad wi th hospi tal tiles. which once served as the residence of King Zog. beautiful rural landscapes. dajtiekspres@yahoo. and a shrine for Albanians though less interesting for foreigners. Sheshi Fan Noli. visit the Shpella e Zeze (Black Cave) in Pelumbas for some fresh air. Rr. Walk east uphill to find several intriguing memorials. Unknown Partisan Statue F-5. and a casino. He managed to create an independent Albanian princedom and keep it free for 25 long years. Blv. first by bears who left a scattering of bones. www. The Black Cave was inhabited in prehistoric times. and Naim was the first major Albanian-language poet.com. a fortress dating back to the fifth or sixth century and perched dramatically on a rocky outcrop. roughly hewn statue commemorates Fan Noli (1882 . now it’s a place for people to snooze a f ter lun ch tim e. Walk west and you’ll soon reach the dam. 16:00 . Swimming in the river is possible here. Gjerg j Kastrioti (1405-68).23:30. The tower in the centre dates back to 500 AD.13:00.1965). AROUND TOWN Parks & Gardens 4 222 52 87. you’ll be delighted to hear there are no signs at all to Kruja until just before the citadel. thousands of the ci ty’s inhabi tan ts cam e h ere on holidays to play and picnic. mud and traffic. The museum was built with a fake medieval façade in 1982 and houses copies of Skanderbeg’s sword and spiky helmet (the originals are in Vienna). If you’re driving. Bush. follow Rruga Hoxha Taksim east . Emperor Justinian fortified this place to defend the settlement of Dyrrachium (now Durrës). Considering the era in which it was made. Just up the hill are the tombs of the Frashëri brothers. Turkish coffee comes in a traditional copper pot and is best enjoyed curled up on the rows of pillows that surround the Turkish tables of some restaurants. visit the Ballkoni Dajtit restaurant. but it was eventually captured and used by Turkish soldiers. Albania was occupied by the Ottomans. or to swim. The animals appear to be reasonabl y well fe d an d ph ysi call y care d for. with their powerdrills and tools on display. the buildings were bulldozed and the result is this pleasant spot of green. Now used for official receptions (and with a military headquarters nearby).19:00. Statues & Monuments Fan Noli Statue E-5. a swish terrace café and a multi-level underground bowling alley. the small streets immediately below the Ethnographic Museum are Kruja’s best. The wol f scatters at any approach to the bars. since Britain was considered an imperialist enemy. or take one of the shuttle vans to the other hillside restaurants. later by humans who dropped all manner of tools in the neolithic. closed Mon).do have a perch. Nearby stand several grey stones listing the names of all German soldiers who died in Albania during WWII. not only for sightseeing but also for souvenir-hunting. it`s none other than the Unknown Partisan. Nicknamed Taiwan. a lake and steep rocks. Whisking you up to 1230m above sea level in under 15 minutes. Petrela Castle sits picturesquely on a steep slope overlooking a river. which offer great views of the surroundings and serve Albanian food. it's surprising how little concession the sculptor made to official socialist-realist style. He served as prime minister in 1924.supposedl y the proud symbol of Albania . Across the field to the right is an anti-fascist monument. Founded in 1971. charging forward with a rifle in his hand .June 2010 . woven rugs and traditional felt hats. The most important sight in Kruja is the semi-ruined citadel area. Return tickets 500 lek. the lamas don't know how good they have i t in their chalet housing. The main attraction however is the fountain in front of Taiwan which in the evening fascinates hundreds of young and old onlookers with its lightshow. Petrela Castle tel. the complex houses restaurants. the most famous being the Ottoman campaigns repulsed by the Albanian warrior Skanderbeg and his men. Sheshi Skenderbej. Just outside the citadel is the old bazaar. as well as traditional copper goods and clay utensils.18:00. After his death.

14:00. Blv.inyourpocket. Vodafone and Eagle both have shops selling SIM and recharge cards. found tel. +355 4 223 00 23. +355 4 223 50 29.com. The small departures area has fashion. tel. +355 4 223 04 10. or in minivans called furgons which may be a bit cheaper and faster. QOpen 09:00 . Gjirokastra and Saranda depart from Nëshërak and Sheshi 21 Djetori. tel. fax +355 4 223 45 78. Blv. Galeria mall.com January .albanianair.tiranaairport.jat. Ded Gjon Luli. austrian. Flights to Ljubljana.com. Flights to Vienna. tel. Bus transport is either in normal buses. tel. sometimes trawling through the streets to find more passengers to cram in. QOpen 08:30 . www. fax +355 4 223 51 38. +355 4 222 89 60. Airport facilities include free wifi and an Adrion press shop (open 03:00-21:00) selling newspapers. com. +355 4 222 79 00.olympic-airways.16:00. www.17:00. +355 42 38 19 48. Dëshmorët e Kombit. Closed Sun. one traffic light further along the Durrës highway.17:00. www. Luf thansa (LH) G-5. Only the most popular cities also have connections in the late afternoon too. com. QOpen 08:30 .al. books. com. Austrian Airlines (OS) H-5. The new access road and passenger terminal that were opened in 2007 have catapulted the airport into the 21st century. dritatravel. +355 4 223 51 62. A taxi to the airport costs about €20. Turkish Airlines (TK) E-4. QOpen 08:30 . tel. Airline codes: JP = Adria Airways. carton of cigarettes €21).17:00. tirana@ malev. Rogner Europapark Hotel. +355 69 405 69 52/+355 69 405 69 53. 720 lek for a day and 3000 lek per week. 069 209 89 08. Flights to Rome. Flies to Athens. www. Veve Business Centre. LZ = Belle Air. Torre Drin Centre.com/al. QOpen 08:00 . Minibuses (furgons) depart as soon as they’re full. tel. Buses to Kosovo. Mine Peza 2. There’s a tourist information desk in the arrivals area only. +355 4 224 51 00/+355 4 225 33 42. but is also known as Rinas. Durrësit 64/1. Buses to destinations in Macedonia. Tirana has no bus station and few scheduled departures. whether you take a taxi. keep in mind that as long as you are on the ground it’s going to be a bumpy ride. Abdi Toptani. Nr. Flights to Athens. QOpen 08:30 16:00. Zogu I.12:00. FB = Bulgarian Airlines. AZ = Alitalia. Bajram Curri. fax +355 4 227 25 39. lost &amp. Buses to Greece. Flights to Istanbul. Buses to Kosovo (Pristina office tel. Rogner Hotel Europapark. 068 204 95 98. The airport is 17km northwest of Tirana. fax +355 4 222 89 61. Ticketing by Albtours. MA = Malev . www.com.com. +355 69 206 66 26. Torre Drin Airport & Airlines Tirana International Airport (TIA. QOpen 09:00 . tel. British Airways (BA) . reservation@flybelleair. Pallatet e Shallvareve. ba. +355 4 227 26 66.17:00.17:00. tel. fax +355 4 225 80 11. Those south to Berat. QOpen 08:00 . Blv. The first bus agency to have a website and online booking. QOpen 08:00 . Pollogu Blv. Centre. www.com.belleair. and passing through is a pleasant experience. Olympic Airways (OA) D-4. tel. Sheshi Skenderbej.13:00. It’s a good idea to ask around for the exact departure locations before travel. Flights to Munich. Budget summertime flights to Cologne. A trip to the airport usually takes 20 minutes. ticketing@albanianair. tel. www. but take risks in blind corners. 09:00 18:05 12:50 19:10 18:20 06:30 16:30 14:10 09:00 10:40 13:40 14:30 18:15 20:00 11:30 15:55 13:25 17:25 16:30 16:20 17:10 21:40 10:30 09:55 19:55 14:40 19:50 19:25 13:45 14:35 12:50 17:45 08:40 14:20 19:30 09:05 09:50 14:35 20:20 09:30 12:30 07:25 13:30 08:55 13:35 18:25 06:20 10:20 06:35 13:59 14:10 15:55 11:00 09:00 20:00 06:35 16:00 14:10 15:45 18:45 City AMSTERDAM (LV) ATHENS (OP) ATHENS (A3) ATHENS (A3) ATHENS (LV) BUDAPEST (MA) BUDAPEST (MA) FLORENCE (LZ) FLORENCE (LZ) FRANKFURT (LV) FRANKFURT (LV) FRANKFURT (LV) FRANKFURT (LV) GENOVA (LZ) ISTANBUL (LV) ISTANBUL (LV) ISTANBUL (TK) ISTANBUL (TK) LJUBJANA (JP) LONDON LGW (BA) LONDON LGW (BA) LONDON LGW (BA) LONDON STN (LV) MILAN (LV) MILAN (LV) MILAN (LZ) MILAN (LZ) MILAN (AZ) MILAN (AZ) MUNICH (LH) NAPLES (LZ) PARIS (LV) PRISTINA (LZ) PRISTINA (LZ) PRISTINA (LZ) PRISTINA (LV) PRISTINA (LV) PRISTINA (LV) PRISTINA (LV) PRISTINA (6Y) PRISTINA (6Y) ROME (AZ) ROME (AZ) ROME (LZ) ROME (LZ) ROME (LZ) ROME (LV) ROME (LV) SOFIA (FB) SOFIA (FB) STUTTGART (LZ) TURIN (LV) TURIN (LV) TURIN (LZ) TURIN (LZ) VIENNA (OS) VIENNA (OS) ZURICH (LZ) ZURICH (LV) ZURICH (LV) To Tirana Days –––––6– 1234567 1––––6– –2–45–7 ––3–5–7 ––3–5–7 1234567 1–3–5–– –––––6– –––––6– –2––––– –––4––– ––––––7 1–3––6– 123–5–– ––––––7 1–34––– –2––567 1234567 ––––––7 12–4––– –––––6– 1–3–5–7 –2–4––– ––––––7 1234–67 ––––5–– 1–3–5–– ––––––7 1234567 –––4––7 ––3–5–7 –––4––7 123–56– 1234567 –2––––– 1–––––– –––4––– ––––––7 1234567 1234567 1234567 1234567 1–3–––– –2–4–67 ––––5–– 1–––––– ––3––6– 1–––––– –––4––– –––––6– 1–3–5–– ––––––7 –2––––– –––––6– –2–4–6– 1234567 1–––5–– –––––6– –––4––– Dep. Sat 09:00 . www. Malev (MA) F-5. Sat 08:30 . so it’s best to set off early. tiranato@jat.15:00. 068 207 03 11) and pay 2000 lek. Macedonia and Montenegro. etc) leave from Sheshi Zogu i Zi or from Laprak. Zogu I.21:00.17:00. Blv. Closed Sun. Buses to Pristina. Albanian Airlines (LV) E-3. 044 614 814. tel. Sondor E-4. so it’s all a bit of a Balkan mess. Rr. QOpen 08:00 . TK = Turkish Airlines. tel. Interlines D-4.tafaair.bg.12:00. OP = Olympic Air . except for a small room in the departures area. Aegean Airlines (A3) . The Rinas Express airport bus (tel. Buses from the airport to the centre depart every hour between 08:00 and 19:00. Rr. Blv. Athens and Thessaloniki. +355 4 38 18 00. Palati 103 nr 2. 6Y = Tafa Air. Pogradec and Korça will most likely depart from beside the Qemal Stafa stadium and trawl around on Rruga Elbasan. 223 34 19. Buses to Durrës depart very regularly from beside the train station. Blv. Belle Air (LZ) Bulevardi Zogu I. GETTING AROUND Flight schedule From Tirana Days –––––6– 1234567 1––––6– –2–45–7 ––3–5–7 1––4–6– 1234567 1–3–5–– –––––6– –––––6– –2––––– –––4––– ––––––7 1–3––6– 123–5–– ––––––7 1–34––– –2––567 1234567 ––––––7 12–4––– –––––6– 1–3–5–7 –2–4––– ––––––7 1234–67 ––––5–– 1–3–5–– ––––––7 1234567 –––4––7 ––3–5–7 –––4––7 123–56– 1234567 –2––––– 1–––––– –––4––– –––––6– 1234567 1234567 1234567 1234567 1–3–––– –2–4–67 ––––5–– 1–––––– ––3––6– –2––––– ––––5–– –––––6– 1–3–5–– ––––––7 –2––––– ––––––7 1–3–5–– 1234567 1–––5–– ––––5–– –––4––– Dep. Once you’re here. 069 205 40 02) departs every hour between 07:00 and 19:00 from beside the National Museum on Skenderbeg Square. +355 68 322 90 07. Buses to Shkodra depart nearby.com. Sun. www. or 2500 lek at night. Alitalia (AZ) H-5. Drita E-4.June 2010 . tickets cost 250 lek and the trip takes under an hour.com) is officially named Nënë Tereza or Mother Teresa airport.com. Sat 08:00 . 11:45 15:05 09:10 16:15 19:10 00:30 14:30 16:30 11:20 14:00 17:10 18:10 21:45 22:50 13:00 17:25 09:50 17:30 14:20 13:30 14:20 18:45 15:30 12:45 22:45 17:20 22:40 16:45 11:05 12:10 15:10 21:15 17:20 16:00 11:20 10:30 11:15 16:00 07:45 15:40 18:30 11:25 23:25 11:30 16:10 21:00 09:00 13:00 18:40 22:15 17:50 18:55 14:00 11:50 22:50 23:55 12:25 17:50 18:30 21:30 41 Jat Airways (JU) E-3. Rr. Smoking is banned in the terminal. +355 4 224 01 75.40 GETTING AROUND Arriving in Tirana is not as straightforward and smooth as it should be. tel. Tafa Air (6Y) . Closed Sun. Kukës. Tirana Metropol E-4. tel.17:00. 044 68 38 78). Closed Sun. Budget flights to Pristina. +355 4 223 49 02/+355 4 222 89 60. Sat 08:00 . Sat. Vlora. Tirana International Hotel.13:00. LH = Lufthansa.13:00.1 Qendra Tregtare Tirana. www.com tirana. Buses Despite the importance of bus travel in Albania.air. OS = Austrian Airlines. www. Abdi Toptani. International buses often depart from behind the National History Museum. but always check flight times before departure. QOpen 09:00 . starting from various places in town. +355 4 222 50 63/+355 69 239 49 29.inyourpocket.20:00. Sat 08:30 . www.17:00. bus or car. Zog I. com. various Italian cities and summer destinations in Turkey and Egypt. +355 4 225 36 39/+355 69 284 72 01. Peja office tel. it.malev.com. Zogu I.turkishairlines. Adria Airways (JP) G-5. Sun 09:00 . Flights to Budapest. Closed Sun. open 07:00-23:00.albaniadutyfree. 09:45 14:40 08:55 14:00 18:30 23:10 13:10 15:00 09:50 11:30 14:40 15:40 19:25 21:00 12:30 16:55 09:05 18:45 13:15 09:30 10:20 14:45 11:15 10:45 20:45 15:30 20:50 14:55 09:15 10:25 13:40 18:30 16:30 15:10 10:30 09:40 10:05 15:10 06:55 15:10 18:00 10:00 22:00 10:00 14:40 19:45 07:30 11:30 17:30 21:10 15:50 16:55 12:00 10:00 21:00 22:15 10:50 15:50 16:30 19:30 Arr. BA = British Airways. west of the centre. Sat 09:00 .alitalia. LV = Albanian Airlines.com. Zogu I. Those heading to the north (Shkodra. Zhan D’Ark. call a yellow Airport Express Taxi (ATE. Flights to several European destinations. Budget flights to Pristina in Kosovo. and a small Adrion press shop. +355 4 225 12 77. See the timetable for approximate operating hours. Most bus departures are between early morning and early afternoon.lufthansa. +355 4 225 18 66. This schedule is valid until 27 March 2010. Rr. +355 4 227 25 40/+355 69 202 77 00. 07:00 15:45 09:50 16:55 16:00 05:10 15:10 12:40 07:30 08:10 11:10 12:00 15:45 18:10 09:00 13:00 10:50 14:50 15:10 14:15 15:05 19:35 08:15 08:00 18:00 12:50 18:00 17:45 12:00 12:45 11:20 15:00 07:50 13:30 18:40 08:15 09:00 13:45 19:30 09:00 12:00 06:00 12:05 07:30 12:10 17:00 05:00 09:00 03:45 11:20 12:10 13:55 09:00 07:10 18:10 05:00 14:20 12:10 13:45 16:45 Arr. tel.com. Sun 09:00 . Closed Sun. Rr. +355 4 225 80 10. from Rruga Karl Gega. tel. Sat 09:00 . Furgons heading southeast for Elbasan. tel. Blv. tel. Local agent: Meridiana Travel & Tours. Flights to London Gatwick. tel.hu. Tirana In Your Pocket tirana. Germanwings (4U) . tel.germanwings. +355 4 222 350 00/+355 69 209 49 06. A3 = Aegean.13:00. Closed Sun. Flights to Sofia. www. QOpen 08:00 . 150 lek for an hour.16:30. www. increasingly comfortable and with air-conditioning. Parking at the airport is free for 15 minutes. Bulgaria Air (FB) E-3. but we’re working on it. Dëshmorët e Kombit.com.adria-airways. Flights to Belgrade. www. where you’ll also find most of the ticketing agencies. Closed Sun. www. Closed Sat. tel. jewellery and duty-free shops (www. 39. tel. prices and departure points. Blv. Albania T-shirts and In Your Pocket city guides.

com. Budget rental of Chevrolet. but these are often only manned on demand. Land Rovers for rent.net. Buses run every 6-15 minutes between 05:00 and 22:00. tel. Rr. +355 4 225 90 20. Closed Sun. Rruga Elbasanit 06:00-17:00. 10:00. Also at the airport. tel. Tirana Car Rentals (TCR) I-4.europcar. or times Duration Price Departs from: 06:00-14:00 6 hrs 1000 lek Zogu i Zi 06:30-18:00.19:00. Sat 08:00 .hertz.18:30. one traffic light beyond Zogu I Zi 07:00-16:00 hourly 3 hrs 500 lek Qemal Stafa Stadium 07:00-16:00 hourly 4 hrs 600 lek Qemal Stafa Stadium 07:00. open 08:00 . Tirana International Hotel. 16:00. Dëshmorët e Kombit. fax +355 4 227 19 60. www. QOpen 08:30 19:00.Tirana has a fleet of privately-run buses. +355 4 224 05 11/+355 69 205 10 72.com. Torre Drin/+355 68 409 58 75. Days 15:30 06:30 ATHENS 08:00 20:00 1––456– 04:00 19:00 ATHENS 09:00 21:00 –23–––7 08:00 20:00 ATHENS 20:00 08:00 1234567 18:00 05:00 PEJA 06:00 17:00 1234567 18:00 05:00 PRISTINA 06:00 17:00 1234567 18:00 05:00 PRISTINA 06:00 17:00 1234567 18:00 06:00 PRISTINA 06:00 17:00 1234567 08:00 19:00 THESSALONIKI 19:00 08:00 1234567 18:00 05:00 SKOPJE 18:00 05:00 1–3–5–– 21:00 05:00 TETOVO 21:00 05:00 1234567 Schedule correct at time of publishing. QOpen 08:00 . com. Check all times before travelling. Abdi Toptani. tel.tirana-car-rentals. Sixt E-3. QOpen 08:00 . 05:15. Abdyl Frasheri. twice hourly 2 hrs 400 lek Nëshërak / 21 Dhjetori 06:00-19:00.avis. Kavajës 116. Arr. www. Sun 08:00 . hourly 2 hrs 300 lek Train station / Zogu i ZI KUKES 06:00-16:00 2 hrs 8000 lek Zogu i Zi VLORA 05:30-16:30. Also at the airport (tel. hertz@albaniaonline. Blv. 15:00.13:00.com. QOpen 08:00 . twice hourly 3 hrs 500 lek Nëshërak / 21 Dhjetori Approximate times only.19:00. Sat 08:00 . 26 63 89/068 20 55 806. The days of dilapidated old state buses conking out in the middle of the road are over .com.lumanienterprise.19:00. Durrësit 61. signs and general discipline makes driving in Tirana adventurous. info@lrscenter.20:00. +355 69 208 Avis H-5. +355 4 223 50 11.17:00. Sun 08:30 . 07:00. 068 20 55 807). dipped liberally in advertising. tel. Small cars from €100 per weekend. www. 22:00 SHKODRA 07:00-16:00. tel. Closed Sun.noshi. QOpen 08:00 . www.al. diesel 125 lek per litre. At time of writing.14:00.16:00. A Europcar E-5.17:00. inform locally for more details. 7 hrs 1200 lek Nëshërak 09:30. Closed Sun. +355 4 222 78 88/+355 68 209 39 22.com. but despite the apparent chaos traffic doesn’t really move very fast. Rr. marked on the map in this guide.e-sixt. Hyundai and Mitsubishi cars.com. Local car rental agency with offices in various cities. 18:00 45 min 150 lek Zogu i Zi 06:30. The only central parking garage can be found below the Vesa Center on Rruga Abdyl Frashëri. Furgon (minibus) schedule From Tirana to BAJRAM CURRI BERAT DURRËS ELBASAN FIER GJIROKASTRA PESHKOPI POGRADEC KORCA KRUJA PERMET SARANDA First-last bus + frequency. Public transport Tirana has a few bus lines. Noshi Rent a Car D/E-3.16:00. open 08:30 . Sheshi Skenderbeg. Sat. 55 79. Sat. Rr.14:00. tel. info@tirana-car-rentals. Sun 08:30 . Also at the airport. Facebook fans got 10% off for rentals shorter than a week. km 2. tel. fax +355 4 224 65 11.18:00.14:00) and the airport (tel. twice hourly 2 hrs 400 lek Nëshërak / 21 Dhjetori 05:00-18:30 4 hrs 800 lek Nëshërak / 21 Dhjetori 06:00-14:00 5 hrs 800 lek Laprak. Sun 08:00 .16:00. 12:00. The agencies have desks at the airport. +355 4 240 03 00/+355 69 203 78 24. Lumani F-5. Rr. When parking. For Himare and the Riviera coast.42 GETTING AROUND Car rental Lack of parking space. QOpen 08:00 . 11. Petrol costs about 130 lek per litre.5 hrs 300 lek Qemal Stafa Stadium. Closed Sun.19:00. info_ab@lumanienterprise. www. www. Company Interlines Interlines Drita Sondor Sondor Monopol Drita Drita Sondor Sondor From Blv Zog I Blv Zog I Museum Museum Museum Museum Museum Museum Museum Museum Price (one way) €25 €25 €35 €20 €20 €20 €20 €25 €20 €20 Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.com. www. so inform them in advance. 4. 14:00 4 hrs 500 lek Nëshërak 04:00. Durrësit 79. www. +355 4 225 50 28/+355 68 205 87 75. International bus schedule From Tirana To Tirana Departure Arrival City Dep. to be paid to the conductor on board. com.lrscenter.com . P. change buses at Vlora. Sun 09:00 .al. Renting a car costs from around €45 per day for the cheapest model. al. Sat 08:00 .com. Make sure you have the agency helpline number and a good map before setting off.al. Opel. europcar@abissnet. A ticket costs 30 lek per ride regardless of distance. Also at Hotel Sheraton (tel. beware of Tirana’s new and effective tow-trucks.inyourpocket. QOpen 08:00 . Sh. Rogner Europapark Hotel. reservations@noshi. +355 69 206 85 00). Avis operates a fleet of Opel and Chevrolet vehicles. 08:30. avisa@avis. twice hourly 40 min 150 lek Train station 07:00-17:00 twice hourly 1. Hertz E-4. LRS Center Durrës highway. Rr.

travel-tirana. w w w. Elbasanit 85.com.outdooralbania. +355 4 223 56 88. Ismail Qemali 34/1. Rr. TIA Tourist Information Point TIA. +355 4 225 33 43. +355 4 223 34 19/+355 68 204 95 98. Tourist information In 2009./fax +355 4 223 54 98. tel. City Dep. Berat. Sheraton Hotel. Mine Peza 102. Durrës. A Albania Holidays Rr. 72. +355 4 225 10 94. Closed Sun. Guided city tours.new leks Old habits die hard. ATEX (Airport Express Taxi) . autobus) A është Iarg? majtas djathas ku jam? Tirana In Your Pocket tirana. www. Tirana’s train station is a basic metal and concrete shed next to the dusty Durrës bus parking lot.albania-experience. +355 4 24 44 44/+355 68 222 56 57. old Albanian habits in particular. Arr. tel. Tirana went from zero to two tourism information centres. albania-holidays.com hotel booking website.albaniantourism.com. Taxis Taxis are a useful form of transport in Tirana. Sami Frasheri.com. Zogu I. also runs an agency and the local tourism office in Korça. raf tin g. paragliding and 4WD trips.inyourpocket. AE can also book top-end Tirana hotels at big discounts. In winter. Rates start at 300 lek for the first 2km (sufficient for most city centre trips) and 95 lek/km after that (count on paying 500 lek for a ride to the outskirts). QOpen 09:00 ./fax +355 4 222 71 21. www. In 1964 and 1991. www. tel.atex. Zogu I. moun taineerin g. See also their booking site w w w. Tickets can be bought just before departure. you’ll get sometimes get quoted amounts in old leks in shops. a zero was cut from the currency and new banknotes and coins introduced to make the numbers easier to handle. tel.000 lek. www. Tailor-made tours with activities such as trekking. tel.tirana-airport. +355 4 222 76 26/+355 67 203 44 04 (airport). Ded Gjo Luli. Magic Tours D-4. maps. Rr.com.com. Drop by to get information about Tirana and copies of Tirana In Your Pocket. Q Open 08:00 21:00. QOpen 08:00 . There’s no left luggage office. check all details in advance. so it’s a good idea to write down the address.19:00. The city’s tourist information centre is right behind the National Museum. +355 4 223 24 24. Sat 08:30 . moun tain bikin g. car rental and tours. Travel agent with offices in Tirana’s city centre and airport.20:00. Day trips in the mountains near Tirana too.19:00. kayakin g. Travel agents Tirana’s travel agents can arrange everything from plane tickets to hotel bookings. Closed Sun.20:00./fax +355 4 222 89 87. 80. tel. com. +355 4 222 33 13.com. net. or 2. Take the currency. Arr. Veve Center. Near the Sky Tower./fax +355 4 227 20 55.20:00. Runs the www.com . tel. Tourist Information Office (Zyra e Informacionit Turistik) E-4.al. and even if you do put down ten times the amount necessary. and plane tickets. tel. Kruja and other destinations.albania-hotel. taking buses are faster and more comfortable. tel. QOpen 08:00 .500 lek between 21:00 and 07:00. Inf o@outdooralbania. Between 22:00 and 07:00 the flagfall is 350 lek. Unless you’re a train fan. Price 05:55 06:53 DURRES 06:10 07:10 70 lek 07:30 08:32 DURRES 08:45 09:46 70 lek 08:30 09:28 DURRES 09:50 10:49 70 lek 14:10 15:07 DURRES 13:00 14:01 70 lek DURRES 15:50 17:01 70 lek 14:45 15:42 16:15 17:12 DURRES 17:30 18:30 70 lek 20:00 20:57 DURRES 18:35 19:35 70 lek 05:55 09:38 ELBASAN 06:00 09:46 190 lek 14:10 17:55 ELBASAN 15:55 19:35 190 lek 05:55 12:32 POGRADEC 12:50 19:35 295 lek 13:15 16:42 SHKODER 05:55 09:21 145 lek 14:45 19:52 VLORE 05:40 10:49 250 lek Timetable and prices correct at time of publication. tel. Outdoor Albania H-5/6. Gulliver OK D-4. Mine Peza 102.44 GETTING AROUND Train schedule From Tirana To Tirana Dep. and has no services to neighbouring countries.al. Taxis to/from the airport for 2. Veve Business Center. Sheshi Italia. Few drivers speak English. www. not all Albanian minds have made the transition. Closed Sun.gulliver-ok.17:00. our experience so far is that drivers do not have to be reminded to use them. info@gulliverok. so you’re told to pay 1000 lek rather than 100. providing answers to questions about Tirana and Albania. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. Zogu 1. with Tirana In Your Pocket guides. A handy tourist information kiosk in the airport arrivals hall. +355 68 212 55 75. Several companies now use metres and can print receipts. www. Pall. Albania Experience J-5. Rr. Old habits . Blv. QOpen 08:00 .gov. and also at Rr. Rr. Radio Taxi . albtours@albaniaonline. they’re the only game in town. and after 22:00. magictours@albmail.al. Albtours H-4. ATHS E-3. you’ll get the right change. 20. Tirana Backpacker Hostel. QOpen 08:30 . tel. Blv. Even though all the signs and price tags in shops are new lek. Also at Blv. the lek. though the run to Durrës is perfectly bearable. alexperience@albaniaonline. Trains Albania’s railway network is basic and slow. activities are limited to snowshoeing and hiking. Rr. bus) Is it far? left right where am I? avion traget aeroport veture. fax +355 4 225 33 42. This is not to rip you off – it’s just an old habit that’s just as comfy as those awful slippers you wear at home. or to call someone who can explain.8. daytrips to Apolonia. Tirana Taxi . +355 4 238 49 infotourism@tirana. tel.com. makinë tren autobus stacion (tren.com. Closed Sun. But still. tel. Online booking (in Albanian) possible. Train station B-4. tel. Travel terms aeroplane ferry airport car train bus station (train. Apt.net.

What’s your name? My name is..Anglia ......UK .Gjermania Nuk kuptoj Nuk flas shqip Një biletë.. Pronunciation a as in father c as in pizza ç as in church dh as in that e as in set ë as in term gj as in dodge i as in machine j as in year II as in still nj as in union q as show r as in rope rr is a trilled r x as in judge Niceties & Necessities Yes No Good Please Thank you Sorry! Good morning Good day Hello Good night Good luck with your work! Cheers! All the best! Excuse me! How are you? Practicalities When? Where? Who? Why? What? I have.Germany I don’t understand I don’t speak Albanian A ticket.Amerika . I am... ...USA ...... An increasing number of Albanians speaks a foreign language: Italian is extremely widespread (thanks to satellite dishes and emigration). like the country itself it is one of a kind. English is catching on fast. ju lutem Sa kushton? Hapur Mbyllur Hyrje Dalje Shtyj Terheq Numbers 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 20 50 100 1000 Days Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday Months January February March April May June July August September October November December Time Now Later Today Tomorrow Yesterday zero një dy tre katër pesë gjashtë shtatë tetë nentë dhjetë njëzet pesëdhjetë njëqind njëmijë E Hënë E Martë E Mërkurë E Enjte E Premte E Shtunë E Dielë Janar Shkurt Mars Prill Maj Qershor Korrik Gusht Shtator Tetor Nëntor Dhjetor Tani Më vonë Sot Nesër Dje 1930s Italian-built ministries on Skanderbeg Square Tirana In Your Pocket tirana...com .... Si quheni? Quhem. Jam. please How much does this cost? Signs Open Closed Entrance Exit Push Pull Po Jo Mirë Ju lutem Faleminderit Më vjen keq! Mirëmëngjes Mirdita ç’kemi Natën e mirë Punë e mbarë! Gëzuar! Gjithë të mirat! Më falni! Si jeni? Kur? Ku? Kush? Pse? Çfarë? Kam.46 LANGUAGE Albanian is an Indo-European language with a 36-letter alphabet. Greek and Slavic. and many words on loan from Turkish. There are distant links with Romanian... I’m from... Une jam nga. and many Albanians in the south understand Greek... ..inyourpocket.

20:30. DIY Praktiker Durrës highway km4. Vesa Center I-4. Blv. dolls and bunker ashtrays at the southern end of Rr. Imported flowers and luxury bouquets. Sheshi Skënderbej. Tirana Dinner Club. The launch of the QTU centre along the Durres highway in 2005 was a revolution in itself . tel. There are also some kiosks selling Albania mugs. West of town along the Durrës highway. Garden Joy H-5/6.14:00. Rr. +355 68 202 26 84. Rr. Bajram Curri. the Galeria mall has 50 shops. transport for the car-less is arranged on the spot. a supermarket. The owner learned flower arranging in Greece and does it well. Albanian flags. Stephen Center. tel. Every Wednesday. Closed Sat. Closed Sun. There's a decent selection meats and cheeses. Pjetër Bogdani 32. a good little supermarket and several upmarket shops.albaniabook. restaurant. ceramic wares and antiques. Kavajës. tel. they're cheap (around 30% less than in other European cities). A good selection of handicrafts and souvenirs.inyourpocket. tirana. Beside the turnoff to the airport.com. QOpen 09:00 . handknit vests. and real Versace ties. Books. Firenze D-4. Adrion International Books E-4. www. For clothes the story is slightly different. as well as wood. on the first floor of the Vesa Center mall. Sheshi Italia.20:00. tel. QOpen 09:00 . Myslym Shyri. km6. Albania’s first proper and large mall will open in 2010. The city centre is small and you can easily walk everywhere. +355 4 227 44 70. Libraria Albania H-3. the QTU shopping centre has a bar. Closed Sun. a supermarket. but the selection isn't great so bring fodder from abroad if you want to read something specific while you're here. bronze and silver souvenirs. Books Tirana has a number of shops selling English literature. Rr. +355 68 416 63 37. QOpen 10:30 . Also delivers flowers. Durrësit. selling recent commemoratives. +355 68 401 04 00.22:00. +355 4 222 78 816. there’s an informal Tirana expat dinner at King House. Sheraton Plaza mall.com/site/twigtirana/ home for more information or email to twigboard@ gmail.com.e Durrësit.21:00. QOpen 09:30 .the complex is large. The hotel gift shop has a good selection of newspapers. Abdyl Frashëri 6. www. Good for colourful. Everybody welcome. +355 4 227 43 56. Italian fashion for men and women.vesacenter. Çajupi.14:00.kalimancaribe. Cartoonland. tel. QOpen 09:00 . On the corner of Rruga Islam Alla. Rr. Rr. Q Open 09:00-14:30. Rr. QOpen 08:30 . Ded Gjo Luli. QOpen 08:00 . www. +355 4 237 41 Supermarkets 4 227 01 74. A good array of women's and men's clothes. Kavajës. Next to Samsung. Q Open 09:00-21:00. Expensive brand-name fashion for men. QOpen 08:30 . 09:00-22:00 in summer. tel.48 SHOPPING The ladies love Tirana.lefutur. tel. tel.com.22:00. Send an email to tiranadinner@gmail. Fashionable shoe boutique. QTU (Qendra Tr eg tar e Univer s) TiranaDurrës highway. +355 4 225 47 70. tel. tel. Abdyl Frashëri. inevitably followed by relaxed to strenuous drinking and late lunch session at the Chicken Shack or elsewhere. QOpen 09:00 . Albanian folk costumes. Blv. There’s a supermarket on the ground floor. Kedi J-5. Kont Urani. www. Rr. Sheshi Italia. newspapers and magazines. Vesa Center. The Rogner hotel lobby bar has foreign newspapers available for reading.20:00. +355 69 204 96 54.even the fruit and veg. Closed Sun.qtu-al. Closed Sun. Galeria mall. Rr. Flower shop J-5. Bajram Curri. tel.com. books@ adrionltd. A supermarket chain that (incredibly) ships everything from Italy . A home interior shop with imported pottery. Blue Fly G-3. and try. +35 69 217 73 05. Sheshi Italia.21:00. Byclass I-4. Myslym Shyri 80. +355 4 225 41 00.14:00.eu. High prices and quality. +355 4 227 17 49. Q Open 09:30 . All are welcome to drop by. Flowers and ceramics. Q Open 08:00 . Asim Vokshi. QOpen 10:30 21:00.18:00. Near the corner with Blv.20:00. Cohiba and Monte Cristo. quality Cuban cigars. Rr. Elegant shoes. QOpen 09:00 . rugs with national motifs. Puff away on your new purchase in style at the small whiskey bar. See www.16:00. Elbasanit. jazz club. as well as kids' clothing.com Albapost F-4. Sheraton mall. +355 4 226 67 77. A convenient. Rr. QOpen 08:30 . or just drinks for those who aren’t.21:00. QOpen 09:00 . Zogu I. Tirana Hash.com to get on the mailing list. 18:00-21:30. fax (+355) 380 101. QOpen 08:30 . Art Forever G/H-4. quality Italian 'junior footwear'. Near Rr. and must-have mugs depicting Enver Hoxha. tel. Sheshi Italia. tel.Z. bowling and tea sessions. +355 4 223 53 53. Aromë Indie G-3. Sun. tel. food court. Philatelic shop of the Albanian postal service. antiques and knickknacks. Traditional folk costumes from all over Albania. Foreign magazines and newspapers can be found at the Adrion shop or at their stands in the Xheko Imperial and Sheraton hotel (at the Albanian Experience travel agency office). +355 4 224 63 86. Vini & Food J-5. Sheraton Mall. and without exception the staff is friendly and reasonably competent. Five Senses I-4. Lots of magazines as well. tel. wood carvings. Rr. Join the TWIG ladies for their monthly meetings.20:00.al. Tirana In Your Pocket Elisse G-3.citypark-al. Rreli-Erebara E-4. Blv. More café than bookstore. inside the QTU mall on the outskirts of town. King Zog and Mother Teresa among others. +355 4 226 58 23. +355 48 Speciality shops La Casa del Habano J-5. Closed Sun.com for more information. +355 4 222 12 82. Galeria Mall G-5. If you don't have time to make the trek there. See http://sites. Sun 17:00 .com January .21:00. antique chests. Sami Frashëri.21:00. SHOPPING Shopping centres Much to the delight of locals and foreigners alike. Rr.tiranahash. where shop windows are full of jewelry. Nino Vitali F/G-3.keyrings and T-shirts.al. Opening in 2010. Rr. Estel E-3. Closed Sun. King House serves food for those who are hungry. painting. Sheshi Italia. Especially shoe shopping is good.June 2010 . Galeria mall. a food court. tel. Shops at Tirana's lovely chaotic market area Flowers 46. Merkom E-3. Closed Sun. Sun 09:00 . QTU centre. A Sheraton Plaza J-5. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit 30. Expat activities New expat arrivals and any other stray foreigners that find themselves wandering Tirana are welcome to mingle with Tirana’s small but active group of expats. +355 68 206 01 76. in both the main hall and departures. electronics store and more. Rr. a café.14:00. charity events and activities including yoga. Casa Italia Tirana-Durrës highway. Perlat Rexhepi. check out this one-man show.inyourpocket. and souvenirs too. QOpen 08:00 .com.google. QOpen 09:00 . Elbasanit.21:00. King House Dinner Night. tirana. from 19:30 till late. tel.com. A handy 24-hour city-centre Euromax Express can be found at Rr. A large boutique with Italian Tod and Hogan shoes plus assorted accessories. Closed Sun. Le Futur H-4. Kavajës 20 and Rr. as not all international brands are represented yet. tel. Brands on sale include Habanos.20:30. QOpen 08:00 . In early 2006 the Galeria mall raised the standard and QTU hit back with a small new mall in the bllok area. dolls in folk dress. 16:00 . Barrikadave.21:00.000 lek. QOpen 09:00 . plastic guns.20:30. a group of expats chooses a different restaurant to eat at. www. 16:00 .20:00. Sun 10:00 . Abdyl Frashëri (I-4) in the QTU City mall. Albania’s largest shopping centre will have some 170 shops. CityPark Tirana Tirana-Durrës highway. and there's great variety. Rr. tel. www. Every Friday. Friend's Book House G-3. check these shops in Tirana. custom-made bouquets.21:00. Hoxha Tahsim 1. The small QTU City mall can be found on Rr. Palace of Culture. tel.21:00. but the city is actually a great shopping destination. A large complex with various mid-range shop outlets. Ded Gjo Luli.com.21:00. Corona E-4. +355 4 227 88 10. QOpen 09:00 . tel. Rr. Rr. Also on Rr. men's felt hats. Also at (I-3) Rr. the collection here is mainly Albanian though some English titles can be found too. The latest PC fashion. Albania's first large DIY market also stocks useful things for travellers. A. Tirana International Hotel. km 6. spa and apartments. QOpen 09:00 . friendbookhouse@yahoo. Shopping is still best in the established areas such as in the bllok district and along Rruga Myslym Shyri where you'll find many boutiques. +355 4 226 30 30. 49 Pirro Souvenirs I-4.al. you're more likely to find bargains and groovy stuff there than in the malls. Flowers from Greece arrive three times a week. Upmarket glassfronted building with several chic boutiques. a skating rink. Q Open 08:00 . A Glamour I-4. QOpen 10:00 . +355 4 224 04 41. +355 68 20 34 473. Myslym Shyri.22:00. and entertainment. Rr. Rr.com. Tirana has been enriched with several malls or smaller shopping galleries over the past two years. Tirana International Women’s Group. Shoe boutique.20:00. there's also an ATM and a Gregory's Coffee outlet. A free shuttle bus runs regularly from the main square between 07:00 and 21:30. Closed Sat.21:30. QOpen 24 hrs. +355 4 223 27 68.org. Kaktus I-4. Sun 08:00 . Italian fashion for both sexes. QOpen 07:00 . QOpen 08:00 . Rr. Quality Italian and Albanian wines. If you're looking for folk costumes. Closed Sun. Reshit Çollaku. A local bookshop with a selection of English-language magazines and Albania-related books. underground parking and a free shuttle bus. this is the only place in the country to buy.praktiker. www. Abdyl Frashëri. +355 Souvenirs & Gifts The best souvenir shopping is north of Tirana in Kruja. Tirana's largest supermarket. Fashion Benetton G-5. tel. The mall attached to the Sheraton hotel has a café.com. Bajram Curri. Pierre Cardin E-4. Natyra H-5/6. Abdyl Frashëri 4. including some on religious themes. Sami Frashëri. QOpen 09:00 . Vaso Pasha 99. Pranë Urë Kamëz. International Book Shop E-6. Felu H-4. (+355) 38 01 00. tel. Comptoir de Paris Sheshi Italia. Euromax Tirana-Durrës highway. QOpen 08:00 . 86 05 12. Bajram Curri. QOpen 10:00 . You may be surprised. Near the corner with Rr. women and children. between 3004. +355 4 222 62 56. +355 68 206 05 68. Rr. a ‘seven star’ hotel. Abdyl Frashëri 5. fax +355 4 223 21 33. www. tel. +355 4 223 06 16.20:00. Myslym Shyri 31. restaurants. Rr. Lleshi E-3. Rr.byclassonline. Every Saturday the family-friendly Tirana Hash (10-70 Albanians and expats) meets at 11:30 for a relaxed to strenuous walk or run somewhere near Tirana. Also at the airport. alpost@icc. Italian fashion at reasonable prices. +355 4 238 84 50. has a good supermarket. tel. QOpen 08:00 . km15.19:00. tel. Closed Sun. tel. Conad G-5. Rr.20:00. most are of Italian quality. tel. www. Dozens of crazy novelty gifts.adrionltd. Vaso Pasha.13:00. tel. and there's a range of deluxe smokers' accessories too. bars and cafés in a pleasantly air-conditioned four-floor complex. The best selection of books on Albania (or on anything else) in English. A smoker's oasis inside the Sheraton Mall. small supermarket inside the Sheraton mall. A free shuttle bus runs between the National Museum and Univers ever y 20-30 minutes.20:00.21:00. Blv. Everything from desktop rocket launch installations to wallets made from South African licence plates. or old books. QOpen 08:30 . Sun 09:00 . Housed in the European Trade Centre building behind the pyramid. Sheraton mall. Also on Rr. magazines and books on Albania. and colonial furniture. tel. 72. +355 4 222 55 87. In the alley next to the Da Shang Hai restaurant. pottery. tel. Colourful. Sheshi Skenderbej.20:30. Rr. Myslym Shyri 64.20:00.com. Abdyl Frashëri. Oriental gifts and art. Il Cammino G-3. vases and glassware.

1. Advertising.abcom. fax +355 4 222 14 48. Basement internet café with helpful staff. Q Open 08:00 . 350 lek after 18:00.al. Sat 08:00 . QOpen 08:00 . com. Rr. www. Sami Frasheri. Sat 08:30 .com. fax +355 4 227 12 76. Donika Kastrioti 4. Çameria. You pay 250 lek per person per game.org.al. Teuta.com. ProCredit Bank I-3. +355 4 225 97 42. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. Perlat Rexhepi 13. Rr./ fax +355 4 224 75 33.15:30.raiffeisen. nfo@ogilvyal.al.albaniaonline. info@abissnet. In the internet cafés listed below. Calling Albania from abroad Dial the country code (355). info@ abcom. Rr. marketing.18:00. Broadband internet. DHL E-4. tel.com tirana. icebergcommunication. fax +355 4 228 04 41. Closed Sun. you can rent one from the ‘businessmen’ near the phone boxes for about 15-20 lek per unit. Mobile phones Three rather pricey providers are active in Albania. QOpen 09:00 15:00. blur-al. info@procreditbank.12:00. www. Ogilvy H-4. fax +355 4 223 34 17. expect to pay 100 lek per hour for internet access (and plenty of noise from little boys playing Counterstrike). +355 4 223 34 96. +355 4 227 50 00. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit 5. Him Kolli. +355 4 228 00 00. tel. Vaso Pasha. QOpen 08:30 . Sun.nbg. Zhan D'Ark. events and other business services. Closed Sat. tel.16:00.al. Local calls: Tirana numbers have seven digits. PR & Events Iceberg Communications I-4. BKT (Banka Kombetare Tregtare) Bul. Recharge cards are widely available across the country.13:00.June 2010 . +355 68 406 69 00. Ismail Qemali. Vodafone H-4. tel.customer@dhl. Rr. hosting. com. National Bank of Greece Rr e Durresit. Mine Peza 2. Sat 09:00 12:30. tel. QOpen 09:00 . tel. www.com. PR and events. www. QOpen 08:30 . Raiffeisen Bank Blv.com website. Denmark Estonia Finland France Germany Greece 355 61 43 375 32 359 385 420 45 372 358 33 49 30 Hungary Ireland Israel Italy Japan Kosovo Latvia Lithuania Moldova Montenegro Netherlands Norway Poland Portugal 36 353 972 39 81 381 371 370 373 382 31 47 48 351 Romania Russia Serbia Slovakia Slovenia Spain Sweden Switzerland Turkey UK Ukraine USA 40 7 381 421 386 34 46 41 90 44 380 1 ICEBERG COMMUNICATION Rr. +355 4 222 62 82. aloperations@ unitrans. tsan@ bkt. +355 4 225 63 06. Zhan D'Ark. Telephone calls International calls Dial the international access number (00). Kati II. e Kavajes. tel.al.com Post rates Postal rates for postcards/letters (under 20gr) are: Albania 20 lek Europe 40 lek Elsewhere 60 lek Tirana In Your Pocket tirana. tel. Sky Tower. and is challenging its rival’s prices. dial 355. Albania Tel. com. Rr. It's also available free at the airport. e Kavajës 59. tel. the country code.com. You can easily purchase pre-paid SIM cards for around 600 lek at the providers’ shops.17:00. info@albaniancourier.vodafone. Rr. bumper cars and bouncy castles. fax +355 4 223 54 89.al.com.15:30. Tirana Bank Blv. QOpen 24 hrs. Publicity. National rates for pre-paid calls are between 30-55 lek per minute. fax +355 4 225 97 43. www. +355 4 225 16 33. ETC.com.com.gr. the city code and the subscriber’s number. www.com. then drop the 0 and dial 38. Internet cafés Free wifi is increasingly common in city-centre cafés. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. +355 4 228 32 01/+355 69 222 01 11.50 MAIL & PHONES Post Central Post office F-4./fax +355 4 226 76 81. tel. tel. www. People on the street also sell cards. www. QOpen 08:30 .al. +355 4 225 87 55. Rr. Eagle Mobile H-4. New cards should be wrapped in clear plastic. Sat 09:00 .al.21:00.al.gr. Ded Gjo Luli 6. www. info@intesasanpaolobank. Pall. www. Also at the airport. AMC numbers start with 068. Kulla 1. QOpen 08:30 . Pall 10 katesh. Zogu I. 100 units 980 lek. +355 4 225 32 03. tel.al. ilirjan@icc. +355 67 219 03 39. Albanian Courier Tirana-Durrës highway. tel. Kompleksi Green Park. tel.intesasanpaolobank. Albanian telephone codes Berat 32 Kuçova Durrës 52 Kukës Elbasan 54 Laç Fier 34 Lezha Gjirokastra 84 Librazhdi Kavaja 554 Lushnjë Korça 82 Peqin Kruja 511 Përmet 33 24 30 36 353 35 512 813 Peshkopi Pogradec Saranda Shijak Shkodra Tepelena Tirana Vlora 373 832 85 571 22 814 4 47 B E YO N D C O M M U N I C AT I O N Country codes Albania Australia Austria Belarus Belgium Bulgaria Croatia Czech Rep. +355 4 450 01 39.com. Rr.al.17:00. tel. tel. Banka Popullore . from dentists to American libraries: the Tirana In Your Pocket directory is your one stop shop for names and numbers.com. Closed Sat. +355 4 222 45 40. digital cable TV and telephony services. QOpen 08:30 .inyourpocket. tel. Dëshmorët e Kombit. tel. TNT E-4. Closed Sun. Rr. Edil al-it. Kati 1. +355 4 225 60 01. QOpen 09:00 . tel.Société Générale Group Blv.bpopullore. Sun. fax +355 4 225 09 56. info@blur-al. Pall. +355 4 227 85 00. all starting with a 2 or a 3. Rr.inyourpocket.org. prepaid customers yet have to notice lower prices though.al. www. Banks Alpha Credit Bank Rr.15:00. +355 4 222 78 12. tel. FedEx F-6. Surf for 80 lek per hour.tnt. +355 4 235 79 76.amc. Call 12 for international directory assistance.15:00. fax +355 4 224 09 95.com. Emporiki Bank Albania Rr. Find more listings on the tirana. Closed Sun.emporiki.alphabank. info@raiffeisen. Q Open 24hrs.com.al.com. Salloni Mazda.al. fax +355 4 225 72 94. QOpen 08:00 . Call 14 for domestic directory assistance. fax +355 4 224 75 77. Taiwan. Perlat Rexhepi. fax +355 4 223 36 13. Global I-4. 1 Tirana. headoffice@emporiki.bkt. www.com.com. UPS H-4.ups. Twin Towers.16:00. tel. Ismail Qemali 27. Closed Sat. the area code and the subscriber’s number. e Trebickës. Rr. fax +355 4 224 87 62. Sun. www.com www. fax +355 4 224 79 12. www."Edil-al". 50 unit cards cost 560 lek. www.fedex. tel. tel.20:00. Zyra 1. Godina Comfort.abissnet. data transmission.dhl.al. Tirana Events Agency Sheshi Zogu i Zi.org.eu.17:00. G-Kam Center. tel. +355 4 223 34 41. Top-Net H-4. +355 4 228 04 42.14:00. tiranaeventsagency. Pall. Closed Sat. QOpen 09:00 . "Perlat Rexhepi".net. tel. Sun. www. Eagle has gone from a dodgy start to great success within a year. a restaurant. Bowling Blur (Qendra Argetuese Blur) Lunder.tiranabank.al.13:00 for parcels). AMC (Albanian Mobile Communications) G/H-4. Internet providers ABCOM Rr.al. Closed Sun. info@tiranaeventsagency. www. Closed Sat. Closed Sun.postashqiptare. al.info@ socgen.eaglemobile. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. Abissnet Rr. fax +355 4 225 60 02.com. fedex@icc-al. 55/1. Vaso Pasha. Nr. QOpen 08:30 . National calls For calls outside Tirana. www.al. www. To call a mobile phone in Albania from abroad. At the southern end of the street. Ada Net Rr. 200 units 1800 lek. QOpen 08:00 .icebergcommunication. www. e-mail solutions. beware that you’ll likely be paying more. nbgalbania@icc-al. Several bowling lanes on the two lower floors of the Taiwan complex. (08:00 . www. albania@alpha. Shk. Closed Sat. +355 48 810 132/+355 69 207 90 72. Sat 08:30 . www.adanet. From foreign representations to high-finance. Albania Online Rr.com. QOpen 08:00 . +355 69 207 67 69. VPN. 51 Express mail The safest though not the cheapest way to send valuable or urgent items. Also at Rr. +355 4 223 49 14. you’ll need ID and a local address (which can be that of your hotel). www.al.com.al.12:00.com. Intesa Sanpaolo Bank Rr. +355 4 225 11 22. Q PLEBK Spare Time G-4.17:00. Sun. Bajram Curri. www.albaniancourier. +355 4 227 60 00. Ismail Qemali 32/1. If you don’t plan to talk away a whole card. Rr.com January . Sun. Closed Sun. Myslim Shyri 6 and at the airport. dial 0. tel. then the city code (Tirana’s is 4). tel. Closed Sun. www. www. An entertainment centre along the road to Elbasan with UV-lit bowling. Rr. Kati 9.al.21:00. DIRECTORY Public telephones Public phones are easily found.net. restaurants and hotel lobbies such as the Rogner's. Dervish Hima 1. bp. Conferences. Tirana Tower. Vodafone numbers with 069 and Eagle Mobile numbers with 067. fax +355 4 225 11 33.19:00. office@icebergcommunication. tel. QOpen 09:00 .&Fax: +355 4 2267681 Mob: +355 69 20 62050 contact@icebergcommunication. Blv. telephone cards are available at post offices. Pall. +355 4 223 39 32. Kulla 2. fax +355 4 225 36 30. al. tel.al.inyourpocket.com.procreditbank.ogilvyal. +355 4 225 09 55. wifi.

amcham. The power that helps the future grow Dry cleaners 224 66 50/+355 68 224 30 51. consulting. Q Open 09:00 . Christian-run. tel. www. QOpen 08:30 .com.20:00. tirana-ob@bmeia.13:00. Kavajës.com. QOpen 08:30 . tel. +355 4 223 02 83. QOpen 09:00 . www. Dësh- Hospitals & Clinics Clinics do not usually take patients outside office hours. Czech Republic E-2. Rr. software and hardware. www.13:30/ 15:00-19:00. Shk 7. Fast service.al-bn. +355 4 236 09 25/+355 4 238 22 10. +355 4 223 27 99. DSF Medical Centre Rr. 'dental clinic' is 'klinika dentare'. +355 4 223 23 85.19:00.gov. com. Dibrës).com. executive search.com. Rr. www. fax +355 4 224 16 87. Sun. American Hospital (Spitali Amerikan) Laprake.22:00. klinikaorthodhokse@yahoo. service provider. Sky Tower 11/3. +355 4 227 48 55. croembassy@ albaniaonline.ccs-albania. fax +355 4 223 29 90.14:00. Sat 07:30 . Q Open 08:30 . tirana. 3. fax +355 4 22719 60. Ledismile Dental Clinic Rr. Closed Sat. fax +355 4 237 48 04.um.13:30. mariestopesalbania. Kavajës 6. +355 4 222 83 90.Pallati 3. Closed Sun. Near Albanian Telecom. +355 4 225 11 80.com. Infosoft Systems F-5. Abdyl Topani. Petro Nini Luarasi 58. Closed Tue. Myslym Shyri. Closed Sat. +355 4 222 39 06.13:30. Fast Clean D-4. The NRC is the one-stop-shop for business registrations in Albania.com.com . good prices. +355 4 225 56 +355 4 225 55 32. Kati 4. comprehensive reproductive healthcare and education in a country where contraception and abortion were illegal until 1991. QOpen 08:00 . Luigi Monti Clinic E-3. fax +355 4 223 55 77. fax +355 4 223 3140. tel.14:00. mstopes@icc-al.al.52 DIRECTORY Business services 55/+355 4 225 76 05.gov. tel. Thu. fax +355 4 228 06 30. 16:00 . Tirana Chamber of Commerce & Industry E-3. copy machines. Torre Drin centre. Closed Sat. with international staff and a good English-language website. www. QOpen 08:30 .spitaliamerikan. QOpen 08:00 . Rr.org. Rr.at. tel. Fri 08:30 . UFO Clinic F-2. Blloku Vasil Shanto. contact@al-bn. Rr. Komuna e Parisit. ambtirana. Who wouldn't like their dental work done by Martians? Behind the Central Bank building. +355 4 Embassies Many of Tirana's embassies and consulates can be found near Rruga Skenderbeg. Fri 08:30 . Tirana Centre G-3. www. Rr. +355 4 223 74 14. +355 4 224 10 18. www. www. info@qkr. Closed Sat. tel. Q Open 08:00 . American Chamber of Commerce H-4. The opening times listed here refer to the working hours of the visa/visitor departments. Closed Sat.12:00. office@abcalbania.qkr. Rr. 11/1.cz.cn.unixkm. tel.gov. Closed Sun. National Registration Centre (Qendra Kombëtare e Regjistrimit) Rr. ledismile@yahoo. Denmark H/I-4. A networking organisation and business club for professionals. info@amcham. QOpen 08:30 17:00. Albanian Business Network Rr. Sami Frashëri. Sun. tel. Rr.mzv. tiaamb@um. tel.12:00. Open 08:00 14:00. Kavajës 120. +355 68 385 95 50. info@ccs-albania. Computers Computer & Copier System (CCS) I-3. ABC Clinic D-5. QOpen 09:00 .al. 3. Sat 08:00 . QOpen 07:00 .16:00. 16:00 . +355 4 225 97 79. Ap. Shk.Sami Frasheri. Sun. ACMS (Albanian Center for Management Services) H-5. Chambers of Commerce morët e 4 Shkurtit.16:30. +355 4 223 30 22. 4. go to the American Hospital or to the Civilian Hospital (northeast of the centre on Rr. Sat 08:00 . fax +355 4 223 22 95. Sulejman Delvina.com. Nikolla Tupe 1.com. +355 4 235 75 35. Murat Toptani. English-speaking clinic.com.al. QOpen 08:00 .inyourpocket. Closed Sun. fax +355 4 223 05 78. +355 4 224 00 28. tel. +355 4 234 10 20. Below the ProCredit Bank. fax +355 4 222 79 97. QOpen 10:00 . Sat 08:00 . Skenderbej 10. tel. The best dry-cleaning in Tirana. Marie Stopes Clinic Rr. tel. Rr. P. QOpen 08:00 . tel. Closed Sat. Fire 128 Tirana In Your Pocket Austria E/F-2. +355 4 223 31 55. tel. QOpen 09:00 . Bulgaria E-2.18:00.org.20:00. tel. Thu 09:00 . tel. Dervishi F-1. Skenderbej 57. QOpen 08:30 .12:00.5-1. British Chamber of Commerce & Industry Blv.net. 16:00 .com. Qemal Stafa 260. infosoftgroup. Emergency numbers: Police 129.com.17:00.16:00. tel. Blv. Rr. Tef ta Tashko Koço 10. Sun. Irfan Tomini. businesses and investors interested in Albania. For emergencies. Closed Sun. tel. tel. Gjerg ji Centre. tel. Rr. Rr. +355 4 225 90 04. QOpen 08:00 . QOpen 08:00 . tel. www. Rr.13:00. Skenderbej 12.gov.net. QOpen 07:30 .20:00. Closed Sat. tirana@emassy.14:00. Skenderbej 1. Gjon Pali II.13:00. fax +355 4 237 98 85.13:00.abcci. tel. Egypt E-2. Hardware. Closed Sun. www.com. tel. auditing and other business services. +355 4 228 06 00.13:00/ 15:00-19:00.com. Ap.org. +355 4 232 07 72/+355 69 406 60 00. +355 4 223 40 04/+355 4 223 21 17.16:30. www.gv. Closed Sun. and in the area just east of the stadium. Closed Sun. +355 4 225 00 66. Sun. 2. Closed Sun. bgemb-alb@interalb. Frederik Shiroka 3. Muhamet Gjollesha. A new and modern hospital along the Durrës highway. Closed Sat. fax +355 4 223 31 59.20:00. Sat. Rr. China E-2. fax +355 4 223 11 25.20:00. Rr.mzv. fax +355 4 223 53 50. chinaemb_al@mfa. Rr. Sat 08:00 . +355 4 225 74 46/+355 4 223 15 64. tel. Sat 08:00 . Croatia F-5. Training. Irfan Tomini Nr. Tue.13:30.cz/tirana. www. fax Dentists In Albanian. Orthodox Clinic Rr. abcalbania. It's highly advisable to phone in advance to check the opening times or to make an appointment. Closed Sat. Pastrim Kimik S&M I-3. Closed Sun. tel. Sat 08:00 . software. Closed Sun. fax +355 4 223 21 59.al. info@abcci.com. www. Now floss. Part of the Catholic Diagnostic Center. Rr. Sun.15:00. Sun.16:00. Closed Sun. fax +355 4 223 22 72. tel. Ismail Qemali.cmsalbania.cci.14:00. Rr.net. Sun.dk. QOpen 09:00 . Sells PCs.al. Family planning clinic providing safe. www. info@ cmsalbania.dk.19:00.18:00. +355 4 223 41 05/+355 68 260 04 05. Dibres 159. Easy. Sun.al.al. egyemb@albaniaonline.

ch. tel.POB 1714.org. Closed Sat.al.net.14:00. Greece E/F-2. +355 4 225 48 35. polemb@albaniaonline. tel. fax +355 4 223 20 89. +355 4 238 03 50. tel.12:00. www. Tre Vellezrit Kondi. QOpen 08:00 . Tre Vellezrit Kondi.13:00.com. Qendra e Businessit G-KAM. fax +355 4 227 49 00. Wed. 1. tel. Lincoln Center H-4. QOpen 08:30 . Rr. fax +355 4 223 25 14. fax +355 4 223 20 46. Sun.ecole-vhugo.16:30.com. Albinvest Blv. Closed Sat.com Tirana In Your Pocket .al. Closed Tue. Turkey I-6.al. www. Rr.gov.com. gov. QOpen 08:30 .admin. www. +355 4 224 83 06.al.org. tel. +355 4 223 35 16.albaniandf. tel.16. Skenderbej 16. Sun. info@albinvest. Sun. QOpen 08:00 .fco. Rr. info@ecole-vhugo.sigal.54 DIRECTORY fax +355 4 223 44 42. uk. Switzerland H-6. Elbasanit 81. +3554 4 223 09 09. fax +355 4 223 48 85. +355 4 225 68 12. Rr. Closed Sat. Closed Sat. Germany E-2. Rr. tel. QOpen 08:00 . Asim Zeneli 10. Saudi Arabia D-3. tel. Wed. Luig j Gurakuqi 31/1.al. tel. tel. tirana. No. Rr. ilc@albaniaonline. Fri 08:00 . Russia H-5.com/al.mfa. Sun. fax +355 4 234 77 67. German. QOpen 08. Iran H-5. Institute of Statistics Blv. 14:3017:00.es. +355 4 227 49 60.tr. Sigal Blv. Sweden H-6. tel. tel. Eurocol Center. QOpen 09:00 . Sun.esteri. QOpen 08:00 . Hungary E-2. roemb@adanet.00 . Rr. gremb.16:30. Visits by appointment only. Sun.13:00. Murat Toptani.tirana@ fco.al. tel. +355 4 223 20 91. www.fco. QOpen 09:00 . Consulates in Vlora and Shkodra. fax +355 4 222 47 27. Fri. al. Rr. tel. Memorial International School Rr. Serbia H-4. Closed Sat.org. nunapal@icc-al.usembassy.com.com. Durrësit. Skënderbej 12.mfa. tel. Tirana International School (TIS) Rr. Rr. United Kingdom Rr.admin. tel.tirana. Closed Sat. +355 4 227 45 05. Thu.instat.gov.tr@adanet. fax +355 4 222 83 00.15 . inuria@instat.yu. +355 4 223 73 79. Q Open 09:00-13:00.16:30. diplo. Skenderbej 14. Twin Tower 1. qsiweb. Sat 09:00 . Skenderbeg 12. tel. tel.lincoln. Rr. +355 4 225 10 50. Fri 09:00 . Rr. Closed Sat.diplo. info@tira. Zhan D'Ark 3. info@sigal.tir@mfa. Qemal Stafa 184. adf@ albaniandf.org. marrja@insig. www. tel.ukinalbania. Fri 08:00-12:00. Skenderbej 8.tirana. Sun. Inside Enver Hoxha's old vila. Durrësit 13. Sun. Dëshmorët e Kombit. info@mistedu. www. fax +355 4 223 20 01. www. emb. swedishoffice.mk. nl/tir. +355 4 222 24 11.gov. www.tia@kum. it. Rr. tel.eda. www. +355 4 223 41 90. mission. al-office@ kpmg. fax +355 4 227 79 90. Sun. ambafrance.ch/tirana. www. Sulejman Delvina. Albanian lessons for beginners to advanced students. Lawyers & Consultants Boga & Associates Rr. Insurance companies Insig Rr.com. Sun. www. fax +355 4 224 76 97. Kalo & Associates E-3. Governmental organisations Albania's governmental organisations. +355 4 223 49 73. fax +355 4 223 55 34.kesh.gov. QOpen 09:00 . fax +355 4 225 60 46. Nr. +355 4 227 79 20.com. www. tel. Closed Sat. Sun.17:00.mfa.ambtirana.org/alb. Closed Sat. Gjon Pali 2. fax +355 4 222 23 41. Sun. fax +355 4 222 54 11. Rr. Kavajës. fax +355 4 225 60 72.ukinalbania. tel.al. sigma-al.com. greekembassy.11:00. Skenderbej 43. Elbasanit 103. Closed Sat.00.15. fax +355 4 223 04 09. +355 4 223 48 88. +355 4 223 42 50. +355 4 224 72 85.gr.com.16:00.Komuna Parisit. Sun. com.org.16:00. tel.tirana@esteri. QOpen 08:30 .kalo-attorneys.nl. www. Albanian Development Fund Rr. Green Park. Spanish and computer courses.de. www. 92. QOpen 14:00 . Closed Sat. Kavajës 116. QOpen 09:30 . tel. QOpen 09:00 .Dibres. Themistokli Germenji 1.gov. Donika Kastrioti 9/1.org. Deloitte F-5. Rr. www. +355 4 225 82 54.al. +355 4 225 97 29. fax +355 4 223 33 64. Rr.16:30. Closed Sat.16:00./fax +355 4 223 08 80. +355 4 222 76 98. www. fax +355 4 223 22 22. +355 4 225 34 07/8.interalbanian. InterAlbanian I-3. +355 4 223 22 38. al. Rr.com. Holy See (Vatican) D-4.tirana@sida. Elbasanit 65. +355 4 223 61 41.gov. Closed Sat. Netherlands H-5. tel. QOpen 08.net.gov. www. Kavajës 116. www. tel. Sun. tel. QOpen 10:00 . Shallvareve.uk. http://tirana. Mustafa Matohiti 20.11:30.hu/emb/tirana. Sun. enquiries. tel.org. QOpen 10:00 . +355 4 Language courses International Language Centre D-5. QOpen 08:00 .14:00. www. Closed Sat. +355 4 223 55 97.14:30.al.ambafrance-al.15:00. KESH Rr. fax +355 4 223 27 23. tel. Closed Sat. Durrësit 123. +355 4 227 46 44. www. Closed Sat.hu. tir@minbuza.12:00. Spain D-2. fax +355 4 225 10 55. tirana@qsi. tel. se. Closed Tue. Blv. QOpen 08:00 .net.al. fax +355 4 225 02 20. Q Open 08:00 16:30. Rr. Sami Frashëri 10.com.gov. QOpen . Rr.inyourpocket. Pjeter Budi 76. fax +355 4 222 99 82. Sun. info@lincoln. QOpen 08:00 . tel.20:00.12:00. +355 4 224 08 28.com. Sun. Rr.gov. info@sigma-al. Closed Sat. al.albinvest. www. United States I-6. +355 4 225 60 40. Poland D-2.17:00. tel. tir. France E-2. Sun.18:00. Rr.16:00-19:00.com. tel. www. +355 4 225 60 71. rusemb@albmail. +355 4 223 35 32. info@kalo-attorneys. fax +355 4 225 82 53. Closed Sat.kpmg.uk. Pall. www. segreteriambasciata.bogalaw. KPMG H-4.mistedu. fax +355 4 223 41 80. International schools 237 17 25/+355 69 20 61 677. Sat. tel. Consulates in Gjirokastra and Korça. Sun. gov. National electricity corporation. Rr. tel.al. Asim Zeneli 5. +355 4 227 59 00. +355 4 223 49 73. Sun. Closed Sat.com. Frederik Shiroka 3.deloitte. embasaudarab@albaniaonline. tirana. www. Albanian for foreigners as well as English.tirana@mae. Fri 08:00 .net. Sun. QOpen 08:00 .mfa.org. tel. Zog I. tel.al. Closed Sat. Sun. QOpen 09:00 . Ecole Viktor Hygo Rr.com. +355 4 236 52 39. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit.17:00. Rr.16.15:00. Sigma Rr. Macedonia F-2.16:30. fax +355 4 223 48 89. tirana@mfa. turkemb@atnet. Publishes a yearly report called Albania in Figures (Shqipëria në Shifra). Closed Sat. www.gov. Vasil Shanto. ambatira@icc-al.com. Sat. Sun. Closed Mon. Rr. +355 4 238 06 50. Italy H-5. www. Rr. fax +355 4 223 34 97. fax +355 4 222 53 83. Romania H-5. +355 4 227 45 24. Rr. Sat.vertretung@eda. Zayed Business Center. Thu. tel. Gjergj Fishta. Open Mon. fax +355 4 223 41 40. QOpen 08:00 . fax +355 4 238 06 60. be. Sun. United Kingdom E-2.de. +355 4 225 28 86. fax +355 4 224 76 97.it.

Vaso Pasha 7.gov. Wang Yan Massage I-3. +355 4 225 93 88. www.al. Ministry of Justice Blv. tel. www.com.com.21:00. Torre Drini.al. fax +355 4 236 20 84. Mihal Grameno. hair salon.com . +355 4 222 27 82. +355 4 225 07 11. Soros Foundation (NOSA) Rr. Chinese doctors perform therapeutic foot (45 mins 1500 lek) and body (60 mins 3. tel. Beauty & Wellness 227 09 67/+355 68 20 26 118.velurspa. Women's hairdresser. fax +355 4 228 04 01. 4 223 28 98.gov.de. A smart 'Spa & Relax' centre on the lower floor of the Metropol building.de. tirana.gov. www. and beauty treatments for men and women.20:00.osce. www. Zogu I. QOpen 10:00 .snvbalkans. EBRD (European Bank for Reconstruction and Development) Rr. foot. fax +355 4 225 58 01. +355 4 223 46 21. delegation-albania@ ec. Tonucci & Partners H-4. mb@moi. Suite 5-4. tirana@ tonucci. tel. www. www. Dëshmorët e Kombit 1. +355 4 223 07 22/+355 68 206 16 00. Veve Business Center.al. +355 4 222 66 29. Shk 9. ketrin.eu. Abdi Toptani. QOpen 09:00 . facials. OSCE (Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe) Sheshi Italia. +355 4 223 31 22.topciu@tbi-al. fax +355 4 222 84 30.al. tel. minister@minfin.gov. mail@justice. Ministry of Finance Blv. Closed Sun. pm-al@osce. justice. gov. +355 4 222 83 20. info@tia. Closed Sun. fax +3554 223 48 18. Rr. fax +355 4 224 86 84. tel. www.al.it. tel.org. tel. fax +355 4 223 34 97. www.500 lek per hour. Rr. +355 4 241 58 70. Ministry of Foreign Affairs Blv. tel.gov. UNDP (United Nations Development Program) Rr. Papa Gjon Pali II. Perlat Rexhepi 16/6. Professional ladies and gents salon with ammonia-free hair colouring. Durrësit 23. Municipality of Tirana Blv. www. com. +355 4 227 88 20. SNV (Dutch Projects Office) Rr. QOpen 09:00 . Prime Minister's Office Blv.22:00. Ministry of Education and Science Rr. alickola@ebrd. www.al.org. +355 4 with street views and there's a sauna.undp. Sami Frashëri. www. solarium. Dëshmorët e Kombit. fax +355 4 223 05 80. tel. www.al. ext. Elbasanit.al. www. fax +355 4 223 07 52. Dëshmorët e Kombit 2.23:00.al.000 lek) massages.ec. tel. Vesa Spa & Fitness I-4. tel. acupuncture and herbal baths (15 mins 500 lek).al.soros. www.com. fax +355 4 222 84 94. 15:30-21:30. fax +355 4 223 45 60. Perlat Rexhepi.56 DIRECTORY tel.al. Sheraton Hotel. 440. +355 4 223 39 50. Transparency International Bul./fax +355 4 222 89 62. www. manicure/pedicure. Closed Sun. Genci C-5.org. 17th floor.europa. secretary. Various kinds of massage (therapeutic.com.al. There's a hamam (Turkish bath) and you can undergo massage. Ministry of Interior Affairs Sheshi Skenderbej 3./ fax +355 4 224 71 55. tel. tel. Gjerg j Fishta 6. Blv.vesacenter. fax +355 4 225 07 13. herbs and even chocolate.. Closed Sun. tel. Rr. tel. hydrotherapy. Rr.al. +355 4 222 25 50/+355 69 203 29 00.al. massage. fax +355 4 223 07 47.inyourpocket.al. fax +355 4 223 58 56. waxing.20:00. QOpen 09:00 .com.borova@yahoo.com. www. +355 4 236 40 90.eu. QOpen 11:00 . www. Gym subscriptions from €200/month. Vesa Center. Pall 2. tel. IMF (International Monetary Fund) Bulevardi Dëshmorët e Kombit. Metropol Center. +355 4 223 04 14.imf. Ap 70.tia.gov. info@km.13:00. +355 4 222 49 27/+355 4 69 247 62 71. ardian. info@velurspa. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. Rr.tonucci.21:00. A large spa centre on the top floor of the Vesa Center. www. balkans@snvworld. tel. +355 4 225 65 61. ABA Business Center. Krehëri i artë i Edlirës G-6. QOpen 08:00 . +355 4 226 74 57. Knowledgeable English-speaking staff available. tel.gov. tel. tel. tel. International organisations Albania's non-governmental and international organisations. Commerce and Energy Blv. TBI Law Firm D-4. Gjerg j Fishta.org/tirana. and skin treatments with Thai mud. com. +355 4 226 76 54. www. Torre Drini.delalb. European Commision Delegation Rr. Dëshmorët e Kombit 4. fax +355 4 223 20 75. tel. +355 4 225 58 00. +355 The recently renovated statue of the unknown soldier 223 59 96. com. Men's hairdresser.moi. www. various therapies. Ministries Ministry of Economy. mete. GTZ (German Projects Office) Rr. Twin Tower 1. Da Shanghai Health Centre I-3.minfin. Rr. +355 4 228 04 00. Sun 14:00 . look for the 'Chinese massage' sign.gov.al. In a second-floor apartment.europa. Abdi Toptani. Closed Sun.gtz. Rr.keshilliministrave.19:00.mfa. tel.org.gov.org/albania. www.al. +355 4 Tirana In Your Pocket tirana. ministri@mfa. +355 4 222 63 07. Velur Spa G-3. tel. keep-fit) from 2. The 'technogym' offers workouts Ardi Hair Fashion H-3. Abdyl Frashëri 5.it. Qemal Stafa. mash. as well as acupuncture and herb treatments.ebrd. spa@vesacenter. Rr.gov.gov.tbi-al. Skënderbeg 21/1. Zog I. tel. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit 35. QOpen 09:00 . gtz-albanien@gtz.

Brigada VIII. Durresit. www. Bulgarian and Russian. Ap. Construction of the €600 million project will start in 2010. Elbasanit 103.bank.org. +355 4 223 98 72. tel. offices.net.13:00.al. clampart@worldbank. tel. info@farmatech. 1. Pall. Pall.com. Macedonian. tel. Italian.com. +355 4 240 04 70. Ap. Skënderbej. tel. with benches along the whole lenght. the Rotterdam-based architecture bureau MVRDV designed a rather spectacular masterplan to extend the park in this area and to add a high-quality and dense urban area along a new “Copa Tirana’ lakeshore drive. A. www. Some also do written translations into and from English.com. Fresh Proper ty Albania Rr. inf93@abaniaonline. +355 4 222 84 74. Green Hours Rr. Land. Pall. Shk. 66./fax +355 4 227 17 46.Mine Peza Nr 1. www. Luig j Gurakuqi 8. www. Kavajës. Digital developing too./fax +355 4 226 61 62. and a jumble of new buildings has risen around the southern shores and beside the zoo and botanical gardens. Barrikadave.com Tirana In Your Pocket . Rr. suite 141. +355 4 226 63 94. Rr.com. World Bank Rr. Slovenian. gov. P. and lit up on sumer nights. Dhimitra Qarri G-3.inf-93. Photography +355 4 222 79 65/ 222 23 29/+355 68 20 29 675.com. fax +355 4 224 05 90. QOpen 24hrs.22:00. greenhours. contact@ freshpropertyalbania. Notaries These offices provide notary work and legal assistance. +355 4 225 12 00/+355 69 209 55 71. Real estate Albania Property Group Rr. Shk. www. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit. Sun 09:00 . Closed Sun. fatimemetaj@yahoo. Century 21 Albania Rr. Kati 3. Ital Kumi H-4. info@balkimo. furniture packs. www. Shk.com. Modern pharmacy. Blv. Also aftersales ser vice. The dam is to become more pedestrian-friendly. 3. info@century21albania. tel. tel. Sheraton Hotel. tel. info@greenhours./ fax +355 4 223 28 44.net.freshpropertyalbania. www. The plan forsees a number of large rectangular buildings to be placed at weird angles in the area below the dam. 1. UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Pharmacies Farmacia 7-17 C-4.usaid. Blv.com. +355 4 224 62 53. Offices in Tirana and Saranda. shops.org. Full directory listings can be found at http://tirana.century21albania. office@ who-albania. UNICEF (United Nations Children's Fund) Rr. tel.org. loungebar042@gmail. Ismail Qemali 27/1. Rr. 4. tel. French. fotorreli@albmail. QOpen 08:00 .com.Themistokli Germenji.Rreli C-4.com. tel./fax +355 4 224 95 22. Zogu I. property management and investment opportunities. fax +355 4 224 37 75.al. Translates English to/from Albanian.com tirana. Sami Frasheri.com. info@albaniapropertygroup. land sale and more.inyourpocket. Balkimo Sheshi Italia.un. +355 4 223 65 QOpen 08:30 . balkimo. 84.org. tel. +355 4 225 05 99. Donika Kastrioti 4. fax +355 4 225 78 29. QOpen 07:00 . Houses for sale and rent.org. WHO (World Health Organisation) Rr. are to planted throughout the area. tel. German. Croatian. 3. Islam Alla.org.com.org. reale@icc. Serbian. Ap 24. tel.com.net. fax +355 4 240 04 71. Godina Volkswagen. English spoken. www. 10. Abdi Kazani. USAID (United States Aid) Rr. Farmatech D-5. Pallati Aurora Konstruktion.alb-property. fmetaj2005@yahoo. Kati 1.com. +355 4 224 72 85.20:00. tel. +355 4 223 31 18. Alb Property Rr. www. +355 4 223 04 48. Dervish Hima. albania@colliers.com. 7.com. tel. fax +355 4 222 84 92.net. albaniapropertygroup. Rr. info@alb-property.inyourpocket. www. +355 4 227 33 35. Shk. 79. albti@unhcr. www. fax +355 4 223 22 22. Agim Robo H-4. fax +355 4 225 47 60. tel. +355 69 293 69 16/+355 68 385 95 50. Real estate agency and property consultants based in Tirana and Saranda wi th proper ty for rent and sale there and in Vlora. tel. To avoid this ad hoc growth also effecting the remaining empty area beside the lake’s dam.eu. unhcr. Pallatet 1Maji. Specialises in building plots and agricultural land. Greek and Turkish. Dibrës.com. linked to the third floor lobbies of the new buildings by wooden walkways. 17:00-21:30.02:00.unicef. org.world. Real Estate Imobiliary Rr.al. agimrobo@hotmail. tel. Next to the Tirana Bank. Luarasi 2a. tel. +355 4 228 06 50. tel. 3/1. which flower bright purple for a month every spring.colliers. buildings and apartments for sale and for rent.com. vqarri@yahoo. INF93 Rr. they are to be clad in local stone and will hold apartments. Closed Sun. +355 4 Tirana Rocks © MVRDV Tirana’s lake area is seeing fast growth. Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit 34. Bajram Curri. +355 4 224 68 98/+355 69 202 03 60.58 DIRECTORY Refugees) Rr. tel. www.com. Nicknamed the Tirana Rocks. Fatime Metaj D-3. Durrësit 118.com. South American jacaranda trees. www. 30/ Rr. and remains a green corridor. Blv. Rr. Translations Fadil Metaj D-3. Zogu I. Colliers G/H-4. Sky Tower. Rr. A chain of modern photo labs. +355 4 222 22 41. a hotel and recreational facilities. 224 88 40. tel.

G-1/2. I-2 Kont Urani E-3 Kristaq Mema D-2/3 Lek Dukag jini I-5. Bajram Curri H-1 to G-6 Blv. J-4 Lidhja Prizrenit I/J-4 Liman Kaba J-2/3. H-3 Faik Konica I-6 Fatmir Haxhiu G-5 Frederik Shiroka F-1/2. D-2/3. K-2 Luig j Gurakuqi E-4/5 Mahmut Fortuzi B/C-4 Maliq Muço D-4 Margarita Tutulani J-3/4 Medar Shtylla I/J/K-2 Mehmet Brocaj D-3 Mihal Duri E-3 Mihal Grameno G-6 Milto Tutulani I/J-3 Mine Peza C-2. Luarasi C-4/5. D-5/6 Ramzan Farka B-6 Reshit Çollaku F-4 Reshit Petrela B/C-4 Robert Shvare I-1 Sami Frashëri G-3 to J-4 Saraçëve D-5 Sermedin Said Toptani F-4 Shaqir Ofshafi C-5/6 Sheh Ahmet Pazari I-6 Shenasi Dishnica D/E-5 Sheshi 21 Dhjetori F-1 Sheshi Avni Rustemi E-5 Shesi Fan Noli E-5 Sheshi Italia I-5 Sheshi Nënë Tereza I-5 Sheshi Skënderbeg E/F-4 Sheshi Zogu i Zi C/D-2 Shyqyr Bërxolli E/F-3 Shyqyr Ishmi F-6 Siri Kodra B-4 Skënder Kosturi B/C-4 Skënderbeg D/E/F-2 Stavro Vinjau H/I-6 Sulejman Delvina H-2. I-6 Emin Duraku I-2. Shuteriqi J-1/2 Dibrës C/D-5. D-5 Vaso Pasha G/H/I/J-4 Vëllezërit Manastiri D-2 Viktor Eftimiu H-1. E-1. E-3/4 Komuna e Parisit H-2/3. Zhan D’Ark G-5 to E-6 Blv. Karapici E-6 V. C-3/4 Haxhi Sina C-6 Him Kolli F-3 Hoxhe Vokrri D-6 Hoxha Tahsim E/D-6 Ibrahim Dervishi I-1 Isa Boletini C/D-5 Islam Alla E/F/G-3 Ismail Qemali H-3/4/5 Jani Vreto E-5/6 Jeronim de Rada F-5 Jordan Misja A/B/C-3 Jul Varibova G-5 Justin Gadari E/F-2 Jusuf Vrioni I-2 K. H-4 Papa Kristo Negovani C-4 Perlat Rexhepi C-4 Petro Korçari I-1 Petro Nini Luarasi F-6 Pjetër Bogdani H-3/4 Pjetër Budi H-6 Prek Bibë Doda H-2 Presidenti George W. B5/6 Don Bosko B/C-2 Donika Kastrioti G/H-4 Dora D’Istria K/J-4 Durrësit D-2/3. F-1. H-5/6. 4 Dëshmorët C-6 28 Nëntori F-4/5.Street register All Tirana streets below are prefexed ‘Rruga’ (Rr. boulevards are listed as ‘Blv’. E-2 Gjin Bue Shpata H/I-3 Gjin Kuqali I/J-3 Gjon Buzuku B/C-5 Gjon Muzaka E-2 Gjon Pali II G/H/I-5 Grigor Heba I-2. Zogu I C/D/E-4 Bogdani E-3 Brigada VIII H-3/4 Çamëria F-3/4 Çerçiz Topulli C-4.). C-6 Themistokli Gërmenji H-5/6 Thimi Mitko E-6 Unaza C-2/3/4 V. H-2 Murat Toptani F-4/5 Musa Agolli B-5 Mustafa Lleshi G-6 Mustafa Matohiti G/H-5 Myrtezim Këlliçi E/F-5 Myslym Shyri G-2/3. D-6 Andon Zako Çajupi H-3 Asim Vokshi D-3/4 Asim Zeneli H-5/6 Bardhok Biba D-4 Barrikadave B/C-4. F-3/4 Naim Frashëri E/F-2 Nasi Pavllo H/I-6 Nikolla Lena F-2 Nikolla Tupe I-3/4. Bush F-5 Prokop Myzeqari D-3 Punëtorët e Rilindjes see Presidenti GWB Qemal Guranjaku H-6 Qemal Stafa E-5. E-3/4 Edit Durham E-2 Elbasanit G-5. Dëshmorët e Kombit F-4 to I-5 Blv. Gjerg j Fishta H-1 to G-4 Blv. J-2/3 Hajdar Hidi E/F-3 Haki Mborja J-1 Halim Xhelo E-2 Haxhi Hysen Dalliu D-3. E-5 Abdi Toptani F-4/5 Abdulla Keta D-5 Abdyl Frashëri I-3/4/5 Adem Kruja G-2 Ali Pashe Gucia C-5/6. E-3 Muhamet Gjollesha D-1/2. squares as ‘Sheshi’. D-5 Ded Gjo Luli E-4 Dervish Hatixhe D/C-4 Dervish Hima I-5/6 Dëshmorët e 4 Shkurtit G/H/I/J-4 Dhimitër S. H-3 Fadil Rada I-2. I-2/3 Sulejman Pasha D-3/4. Shijaku B/C-4 Kajo Karafili E-3/4 Karl Gega B-4 Kavajës F-1/2/3. D-4/5 Beqir Luga E-6 Besim Imami F-2/3 Bilal Konxholli C-5/6 Blv. I-1/2 Xhezmi Delli E-2 Xhorxhi Martini E/F-5 Ymer Kurti I/J-3 Zenel Baboçi D-5 . E-4 Tafaj C-5/6 Tefta Tashko Koço E-6 Thanas Ziko B-5/6.

Albania Grannies relaxing in the National Museum park Tirana In Your Pocket tirana.com . Paul Catholic Church Central Market Charl’s Bistro Chateau Linza City Clock Tower Converse Dafina Dajti Ekspres Cable Car Dajti Park Da Shang Hai Delikatesë Diplomat Diplomat Fashion Doro City Eder Elysée Endri Enoteca Joan Epër shme 7 Era 27 20 32 18 18 26 23 11 35 18 35 30 26 23 30 25 25 39 32 38 18 11 14 31 20 31 14 23 26 36 36 35 31 12 14 36 31 20 39 22 24 30 12 12 14 14 14 20 32 30 23 Et'hem Bey Mosque 37 Europa 14 Fan Noli Statue 38 Far East 24 Ferari 14 Firenze 14 Flares 31 Flex 31 Folie 34 Fortress of Justinian 37 Freddy's Hostel 21 Friend's Book House 30 Galeria Shijaku 37 Grand 11 Grand Park 38 Green House 12.net www.albania-experience.62 INDEX 1001 Netë Albaniantrip Alcora Alpin Ambasador Amor Apollonia Arber Archaeological Museum Areela Art Gallery Artist Lounge Ballkoni Dajtit Bantia Bardhe e Zi Big Bite Billionaire Black Cave Bonaparte Botanical gardens Briker Brilant Antik Broadway Buda Bar Bujtina Shqiptare Bulevard Café California Carlsberg Casa di Pasta Cathedral of St. 26 Gregory's Coffee 30 Guva e Qetë 18 Haxhiu 18 Hotel Airport Tirana 18 House of the Dervish Khorosani 37 Il Cappricio di Zio Edi 27 Iliria 14 Il Pomodoro Food Court 25 Imagine 32 Irish Bar Tirana 34 Juna 30 Jurgen 18 Juvenilja Castelo 28 Kalaja 18 Kalaja e Petreles 27 King House 25 Kolonat 25 Kruja 14. Sheraton Tirana &Towers. Chicken Mrizi i Zanave Napoli National History Museum Nëna Mbretereshë Nirvana Nobel Noel Noi Café Oda Orthodox Cathedral Orthodox Church Otium Palma Panorama Papafingo Parlamenti Pastiçeri International Patisserie Française Pension Andrea Pension Strazimi Petrela Castle Piazza Pike Loti Pirro Mani Pyramid Quo Vadis Radio Raum Regency Casino Rei Jazz Club Republika Rinia Park Rock 'n Roll Rockwood Rogner Europapark Royal Rozafa Sarajet Savana Serenata Serendipity Shang Hai Sharm Club 24 16 30 12 31 12 38 25 23 27 36 28 16 16 32 30 23 36 36 26 16 22 32 18 30 25 20 21 39 23 18 27 35 30 32 34 34 32 20 38 32 32 11 25 28 24 20 24 26 25 34 Shëng jin Church Mosaic Sheraton Tirana Hotel Skanderbeg Square Skanderbeg Statue Sky Club Sky Club Café Sky Hotel Sofra Sofra e Ariut Steakhouse Steelwings Stela Stephen Center B&B Stephen Center Café Stylus Club Marriott Swiss Chalet Tanners' Bridge Teqeja Dervish Hatixhe Theranda Tiki Tirana Backpacker Hostel 1 Tirana Backpacker Hostel 2 Tirana International Tirana Rock Tomb of Kaplan Pasha UAW Guesthouse Unknown Partisan Statue Venue Dance Club Venue Park Verzaci Vesa Residence Victoria Vila 3 Vila 12 Vila 31 Vila Aeroport Vila Belvedere Vila Ferdinand Vila Logoreci Vila Metropolitan Vila Park Vila Tafaj Vila Verde Villa Amsterdam Vinum Viva Wine Spirit Xheko Imperial Yamato Zero 42 Zoo 36 11 35 38 26 30 14 28 28 26 32 16 21 30 32 28 37 37 16 32 22 22 12 32 37 21 38 34 22 18 21 16 14 28 24 18 16 26 27 26 18 18 20 26 23 24 32 11 27 34 38 Come with us to discover Europe's last secret Albania Experience Tel +355 4 2 272 055 Fax +355 4 2 271 960 Mobile: 068 40 490 90 Email: alexperience@albaniaonline.inyourpocket. Tirana.al Address: Sheshi Italia. 39 Kuki 31 La Cantinella 27 La Tavernetta 27 Living Room 31 Lollipop 34 London 25 Lugano 14 Lulishte 1 Maji 25 Magic Blue 28 Mai Tai Resort 22 Mamma Rosa 27 Martyrs' Cemetery 35 Meduza 31 Meg Klaus 18 Metropolitan 23 Mezuraj Museum 35 Mimi Miniri Mojo MonarC MonarC Bar Mondial Mother Teresa statue Mr.

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