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Gjirokaster Castle

Castle of, Gjirokastër, Albania
| +355 84 262 441
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A castle in the Albanian valley Gjirokaster  Albania

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A castle in the Albanian valley

Driving from Greece into Albania on a road trip whim, we found ourselves in the town of Gjirokastra, having been enchanted by a large hillside fort seen from the main road.

A winding drive up into town leads to the base of the dominating Gjirokastra Castle, deemed a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2005.

It's worth making the hike to the top to explore this castle's dark, gun-filled corridors, unintentional secret gardens from overgrowth creeping into the ruins, and rather gobsmacking vistas from the top. It also affords a good view down onto the unique slate roofs of the town's houses -- shimmery in a bit of sun and architecturally interesting in their own right.

The top of the castle once served as a communist prison, and by chatting to a few of the local guards, we were able to get a personal tour inside -- normally off limits to tourists.

Make some friends and enjoy an astounding discovery in an equally intriguing country!