Vlorë

Vlorë is a city in Coastal Albania in Albania.

Understand

Vlore lies in the southwestern coastal region of Albania, at the southern end of the Adriatic Sea and the northern part the Ionian Sea. The Vlore coastline accounts for about 30% of the entire coast of Albania and in its proximity is located the Albanian Riviera. It is 135km from the capital city, Tirana, separated by only 72km from Italy (Channel of Otranto) and 123km from Greece (the island of Corfu). The surface area of Vlore is 1609km2 and includes 4 cities; Vlore, Selenica, Himara and Orikum. It has a climate typical of Mediterranean Sea, with mild winters that are generally wet, and summers that are dry. The Vlore region has three basic climatic zones: The coast has moderate temperatures, as the other countries of the Mediterranean, and does not suffer the cold winds like the western side of Albania.

The inland, hilly areas in the region have a cool climate with rains and similar to that of Central Europe with a relatively mild climate. The mountainous region, such as Llogara, possesses a dry continental climate. In winter it can be quite cold (though snow is relatively uncommon) and has fresh, cool air all summer long. Vlore receives more hours of sunshine per year than any other region of Albania - averaging over 2000 "sunny" hours annually. Vlore has the only peninsula in Albania, which is named Karaburun. It is roughly 16km by 4km in size, and an area of 62km². The peninsula of Karaburun is rich in natural resources (famous for marble), woodlands, and archeological remains. It is also home to a reserve for wild pigs. The only island in Albania, named Sazan, is located 17km from the port of Vlore and 9km from Triport (Three Gates) in the Vlore region. The highest point of the island is 342m. Sazan has a surface area of 5.7km² and 12km of coast. A rocky cliff breaks the beach. Vlore, long known for its olive production, at last count had approximately 280,000 olive trees. The olive trademark " Vlonjak" is one of the oldest in Europe and is known for its great oil production. The territory around Vlore comes from thriving ancient cities such as Amantia-Ploce, Olympe-Mavrova, Orikos-Orikum, Himera-Himare, Kionina-Kanine, Nymfeum-Selenica and Aulona-Vlora.

A lot of famous people in Albania were born in Vlore, including 6 former ministers (Xhafaj, Malaj, Angjeli, Gjinushi, Leskaj, Pango), a lot of famous singers (including Aurela Gace and Poni), and several other VIPs. Vlore is also known for being the head city for the 1997 revolution in Albania. Zani Caushi was one of the local leaders, although he later started to trade drugs. If possible, do not get in a discussion about 1997 while being in Vlore.

Talk

The dialect of Vlore is difficult to learn, as it includes a special kind of speaking (slower than the rest of Albania), difficult "r" and "l" ("r", especially when the first letter of a word, is severe, while "l" is something between "l" and "ll", similar to the Greek "l") and a lot of special phrases. Vlore people almost always use "motra" and "vlla" (sister and brother) when addressing at each other, even if its the first time you meet with them. A famous funny phrase in Vlore is "me ler rehat o vlla se i thash vllait" ("Get off brother, or I'll tell my brother", when a girl grows tired of a boy's flirting).

Get in

By bus

As of September 2014, mini-buses left from Saranda to Vlore at the following time: 05:30, 11:30, 16:30, 18:00.

Bus from Tirana - the journey can be very slow! - furgons from Saranda or Fier), can be faster than bus.

Daily two buses from Athens ( over night bus and day long bus, both €30).

Buses to Ohrid, Macedonia depart at 14:00.

By boat

By train

By car

If you are in Tirana, follow the way: Tirana-Durres-Kavaje-Rrogozhine-Lushnje-Fier-Vlore. The roadway is pretty good. From Macedonia, you can follow: Qafe Thane-Librazhd-Elbasan-Rrogozhine-Lushnje-Fier-Vlore From Greece, you can take three ways: (i) Kakavi-Gjirokaster-Tepelene-Vlore; or (ii) Kakavi-Gjirokaster-Qafe e Muzines-Sarande-Vlore; or (iii) Qafe Bote-Sarande-Dhermi-Vlore. The last itinerary is the shortest

Get around

There are three areas you might visit in Vlore - the beaches, the port, and the town centre.

There is a small tourist information kiosk in Flag Square, next to the Independence Monument.

See

Muradie Mosque

In the "town centre" area -

Port area -

Further afield

Dhermi
Narta Lagoon

Do

Eat

Vlore's sea products are some of the best in Albania. You must not forget to visit Paradisa Beach Restaurant, one of the best sea food products in Albania. Its 5-10 minutes (depending on traffic) with a car from the center of Vlore. Ask for the right direction. Another great restaurant is "Makareshi", which is less than 5 minutes from the center of the city (with a car). But the most important thing to eat there is the Vlore traditiional food. Vlore (together with Kurvelesh) is the center of Laberia - the most famous and patriotic region of Albania. "Lab" people tend to be very proud of themselves, but also of their food. Try kukurec, qumeshtor and harapash. "Mish ne hell", which is rotisserie lamb, is well-known. Try this around Karaburuni.

Vlore area cuisine is typical of coastal and mountainous areas. The products are taken from dairy animals which are raised in the mountains by the sea. Here are some examples of traditional Albanian dishes: Byrek is a flaky pastry that is preferred by the people of Vlore to be filled with either field greens or just as a milky pie. The most important ingredients are fresh milk, flour, and field greens.

Drink

By the main beach where the Adriatic meets the Ionian sea, there is a natural mineral water spring that leads into the ocean. Locals fill up empty bottles to take with them to the beach, and larger containers to take home. You can have an aperitif always near the seaside or in the mountain of Llogora, a natural park (protected).

Sleep

Accommodation on offer ranges from luxurious to basic with a good choice of hotels in between. Friendly service and good hospitality is usually encountered. Also available are private apartments and homes for longer stays of 10-15 days, B&B's and hostels. You can camp in some areas.

Town centre area -

Go next

Sarandë


This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Wednesday, September 16, 2015. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.