Himare Albania – 12 Best Things To Do & Best Himare Beaches


Are you planning to visit Himare Albania?

Himare is by far my favourite place on the Albanian Riviera. It’s a small town that managed to preserve its local charm and where you can mingle with the locals.

Himarë Albania is also an excellent base for exploring the Albanian Coast, thanks to its central location. Places like Dhermi, Porto Palermo and Borsh are a short drive away. And even Sarande or Ksamil are doable destinations for a day trip.

And did I mention the crystal clear, azure water and soft-sanded Himare Beach

This post covers all you need to know about Himare – from its gorgeous beaches, things to do in Himare and nearby areas, the best hotels in Himare Albania to stay in, and the best Himare restaurants.  

Himare Albania – What to expect?

Himare Albania
Himare Albania Promenade

Himara Albania is a small town situated on the Albanian Riviera, 4 hours drive south of Tirana and about 80 min drive from Sarande. Himare has access to a sandy beach that is divided into six parts, each with its own name and charm. 

The main beach – Plazhi Himare (Beach Himare), is located in the heart of the town with a lovely promenade and restaurants running along the beach. You can find everything you need in this area, from supermarkets and souvlaki shops to the best ice cream stands and souvenirs. Everything is reachable on foot. 

The promenade is also where you can also experience Himare nightlife.

If you’re looking for an authentic Albanian seaside town and local vibes, Himare is for you. After visiting main Albanian seaside towns such as Ksamil, Sarande and Dhermi, I was pleasantly surprised that Himare is free from hordes of tourists and private beaches where you need to pay for umbrellas and loungers.

Himare Albania

If you rather stay somewhere with lively nightlife, I recommend choosing Sarande or Ksamil. For a chilled stay at one of the best beaches in Albania, choose Himare. 

Himare Albania has a strong local community, and if you stay a little longer, you’ll get to experience the local hospitality and how helpful Albanian people are! If you need help, just ask.

Although in many cases, people will even offer you help without asking if you look lost. During my two months travelling through Albania, I experienced so many acts of kindness, such as getting a free lift and advice on where to catch the bus without even asking. 

Quick Himare Guide

✈️ Check Expedia for the best flights.

🏨 Check the best hotels Himare Albania on Booking.com.

🚗 If you’re planning to rent a car, check Discover Cars for the best deals.

Himare Map

Where to stay in Himare? + Best Himare hotels

If you’re looking for a good Himare hotel, here are some of the unique options for Himare accommodation to consider. 

Stay within walking distance of the town centre to have all the best restaurants in Himare and Himara nightlife that is centre along the main beach promenade. The town centre has a few really beautiful beaches, so by staying in the centre, you will be close to it all.

If you want to be close to the best beach in Himare, stay by Livadhi Beach, which is situated a short drive from Himare, Albania. Livadhi is an expansive beach with gorgeous turquoise water and white gravel sand.

Luxury Pick – Rea Boutique Hotel Himare

Rhea Boutique Hotel Himare boasts sea view rooms that feature a large terrace to enjoy daily sunsets, air conditioning and bathrooms equipped with a bathtub. Situated within a few minutes walk to the promenade, the hotel also features a restaurant serving Albanian cuisine.

Best for: Romantic vacation, couples, luxury, sea view lovers.

Resort Hotel Miamar Hotel Himare

Hotel Miamar Himare Albania is situated on Livadhi Beach and boasts two outdoor lagoon pools, a spa and a fitness centre. Guests can also enjoy a free buffet breakfast and an onsite restaurant serving Italian and Mediterranean cuisine. Livadhi is situated a little away from Himare town, but it is one of the best beaches in this area. 

Best for: Beach vacation, relaxation, couples, families.

Midrange Pick – Castle Hotel Himare

Situated only a short walk from Himare town, Himare Castle Hotel features sea-view rooms with balconies and daily breakfast included in the room rate. Guests can also enjoy an a la carte restaurant, a bar with a terrace, free sun loungers on the beach and complimentary parking. 

Best for: Couples, staying near the town, nightlife. 

Close To Nature Scala Bungalows Himare

Scala Bungalows are located by Livadhi Beach, a little away from the Himare town centre. The air-conditioned wooden bungalows boast a beachfront location and a close-to-nature feel. Complimentary, homemade breakfast is served daily, and guests can enjoy free parking.

Best for: Nature and beach lovers. 

The Six Himare Beaches 

#1 Plazhi i Himares (Himare Beach Albania)

Himare Beach

Himara Beach, as you can guess from the name, is the main beach in Himare Albania. All the best beaches in Himare are situated close to each other and in a bay, and you can see them all and easily walk from one to another. 

Himare Beach is a public beach with no entrance fees. There are showers and a lifeguard. It is Himare best beach because it has lovely soft sand and it’s never too crowded, even during the high season. Both locals and tourists use the beach, and it has a nice chilled, family vibe. It is also located right in the heart of the town, which is easy and convenient.

Interestingly, the local people leave their colourful parasols on the beach even overnight and let tourists use them when they’re not there. You can only imagine how cosy and trusting Himare town is!

The best time to visit Himara Beach is at around 4 pm when the sun is not as strong, and you can enjoy it without getting burned. It is also a great time for photography and people-watching as the locals finish work and head to the beach in the summer. 

#2 Spille Beach Albania

Spille Beach Albania

Spile Beach is the first northernmost beach in Himare. It is pretty small, and it merges with the main Himara beach Albania. You can find here a Himare jetty from where you can take a water taxi to the nearby beaches, such as Gjipe Beach or hire a SUP board.

Himare jetty

Spile Beach is quiet and frequented mostly by the locals. If you want to find some peace and quiet in an already peaceful town, head to Spille Beach Himare!

#3 Sfageio Beach 

Sfageio Beach Albania

Sfageio Beach is the smallest beach in Himare, tucked between Himare’s main beach and the cliff, where you can find River Downtown Bar and Acta Restaurant – a fantastic spot for a romantic sunset dinner.

Sfageio is one of Himare best beaches for watching the sunset. In the late afternoon, you can either move to the River Downtown Bar or get some drinks to go and watch the sunset from the beach.

Sfageio Beach Albania
Sfageio Beach Albania

There is also a small amusement park for kids located just above the beach.

#4 Marachi Beach Himare (Plazhi i Maracit) 

Marachi Beach Himare

Marachi Himare Albania, also known as Maracit Beach, is the next one up after Sfageio. It is a private beach where you can rent an umbrella and sunbeds for a daily charge.

The beach also has its restaurant, and you can order drinks and get them served to your sunbeds. It is also possible to order food from three different restaurants.

Marachi is the best beach Himare has to offer that comes with umbrellas and food and drinks service.

#5 Prinos Beach & #6 Potami Himare Beach 

Potami Himare Beach

These are the most southern beaches in Himare. They are also sandy, and some parts are taken by sun loungers and umbrellas for rent, and some remain public for everyone to use. If you’re looking for a Himara hotel, this is the area where most big hotels in Himara are located. 

Best Things To Do In Himare Albania 

Wondering what to do in Himare? Here are the top Himare things to do.

#1 Hike to Livadhi Beach 

Livadhi Beach

Hike time: 60 min & 45 min back 

Cost: free 

Best time to do: morning 

If you’re up for some hiking in Albania, accompanied by the stunning coastal views, take the scenic route and walk from Himare to Livadhi Beach, situated 5km north of Himare Albania. The hike should take around one hour and the best time to do the walk is in the morning to avoid the heat. The hike starts by the ferry port. 

The route is not very well marked, so I recommend bookmarking this post to easily follow the directions. It took me over 90 minutes to get there because I had to come back a few times trying different routes!

On the way to Levadhi Beach, stop at Kico Sea View Himara, where you’ll find an abandoned building which you can climb to the top for a jaw-dropping view of the azure waters of the Gjiri i Spilese bay. 

Livadhi Beach Himare

If you’re looking for a good lunch spot, try Blue Bay Himare, situated just next door from Livadhi Beach. It’s a beach bar and restaurant and comfy seats in the shade overlooking the beach and decent food. 

Livadhi Beach Himare
Livadhi Beach Himare

Livadhi Beach is wide and long, covered mostly in pebbles of different sizes. You can either rent a pair of sun loungers and an umbrella for the day or bring a blanket and stay in the public part of the beach. 

Livadhi Beach Himare

#2 Go Standup Paddle Boarding 

Cost: €5 per hour or €20 per day 

Where: Himare Beach by the jetty 

Best time: between 4-6 pm or morning 

Himare Beach is an excellent place for practising your paddling and balance on a SUP. The sea is calm most of the time, and there is not much traffic from the boats in Himare, which makes it the perfect place for stand up paddleboarding! Rent a paddleboat during the golden hour for the best experience! Early in the morning is also a good time to paddleboard in Himara. 

#3 Visit Himare Castle (Barbaka)

Himare Castle (Barbaka)

Cost: 100 Lek 

Taxi cost: 400 Lek one way

Hike time: 60 min 

Best time: sunset time

If you want to explore Himare Albania heritage, visit Himare Castle, perched on the hilltop just a few minutes drive from Himare Beach. The castle dates back to the 5th century BC, and today is mostly a ruin, but it gives you a good idea of how grand the structure must have been during its prime time!

Himare Castle (Barbaka)
Himare Castle (Barbaka)

The castle is part of the Himare Old Town that ruled the entire coastal region. During your visit, you will be able to see that people still live in the old buildings belonging to the castle. 

Himare Castle (Barbaka)
Himare Castle (Barbaka)

There is a small chapel with colourful frescos.

Himare Castle (Barbaka)
Himare Castle frescoes

If you’re not easily impressed by the ruins, you will be awed by the scenery and the view! On a clear day, it is possible to spot the Greek island of Corfu and the many shades of turquoise waters of Livadhi Beach. 

Himare Castle view

The best time to visit the castle is at sunset time or early in the morning if you decide to hike. 

Himare Castle drone shot

#4 Stroll The Promenade At Sunset (xhiro)

Himare Albania

Taking a stroll along the beach at sunset is definitely one of the best things to do in Himare Albania. The promenade comes to life at the golden hour with local vendors setting up their stools with souvenirs and snacks such as crepes, popcorn and candy floss. The seaside restaurants invite people in for dinner.

Himare Albania
Himare Albania

And the locals come out for a walk and catch up with the neighbours, which is an Albanian tradition called xhiro. In some cities, the main promenades are even closed for car traffic in the evening to facilitate xhiro (the walking and talking Albanian custom)! 

crepe Himare Albania

#5 Enjoy a rooftop bar 

UMI Sushi & cocktails Himare
UMI Sushi & cocktails Himare

If you rather spend the golden hour in style, head to one of the Himare rooftop bars situated along the beach promenade. Have a drink and watch the sky changing colours and the busy street underneath. One of the bars I can recommend is UMI Sushi & cocktails. It was not overly crowded when I visited (perhaps due to the high prices), and they have a really cool rooftop terrace and a chilled vibe. There was a happy hour during the sunset, and I had the best sushi I’d had in my life. I’m not even kidding!   

#6 Go For A Sunset Dinner

Acta Restaurant Himare

If sushi is not your thing or you’re looking for something more romantic, head to one of the beach restaurants in Himare for a sunset dinner. There is nothing more romantic than enjoying a dinner accompanied by the sound of waves and a colourful sunset sky! One of the excellent choices in Himare is Acta Restaurant overlooking the small cove of Sfageio Beach.  

Best Himare Day Trips 

#7 Dhermi Beach & Dhermi Old Town 

Dhermi Old Town, Albania Dermi
Dhermi Old Town, Albania Dhermi

Where: 30 minutes drive south

Bus cost: 250 Lek (tell the driver whether you want Dhermi town or beach, there are two agreed places where buses stop but use Google maps to see where you want to be and ask the driver to stop where it’s convenient)  

Time: 11:00 am 

Sun loungers hire: 1,000 LEK

Dhermi Albania is a small coastal town that is famous for its wide stretch of pebbly beach with incredibly turquoise waters. Dhermi is an excellent destination for a day trip from Himare. 

For culture and history enthusiasts, there is Dhermi old town perched on the hill with cute narrow alleys, stone buildings and historic churches. The old town of Dhermi is not what you imagine based on a typical European old town. Dhermi old town hasn’t been commercialised and is a little of a work in progress with restoration works. Don’t expect to find fancy cafes, but what you can expect it’s a lot of beauty and heritage all to yourself!

Albania Dhermi

The highlight of Dhermi historic town is the old Monastery of St. Mary, perched on the highest hill of Dhermi, famous for its frescos. It will take around 20 min to hike to the hill from the main road where buses stop in Dhermi, but at the top, you will be rewarded with epic views of the sea and the surrounding areas. 

Dhermi Beach

When you finish exploring the town of Dhermi, head to Albania Dhermi Beach, home to many cool beach bars and stylish beach clubs. The distance between Dhermi hilltop historic town and the beaches is a little challenging for walkers. I came to Dhermi by bus, and it is manageable but prepare yourself for a 45 min hike down. When you get to the coast, there is a large parking lot. If you come by car, you can leave it here. Follow the main beach promenade to the left.

Dhermi Beach
Dhermi Beach Club

Along the main stretch, you’ll find various small snack shops and restaurants, and on the right, beach clubs where you can hire sun loungers for a daily charge. The prices really vary from one place to another and depending on the season, but expect to pay around 1,000 LEK for two sun loungers and an umbrella for a day.  

#8 Gjipe Beach 

Gjipe Beach

Tucked between soaring cliffs covered with greenery, Gjipe Beach is considered to be one of the most epic Albanian beaches! The beach is part of the impressive Gjipe Canyon, and if you’re up for an adventure, you can hike its length! For the rest of us, even getting to Gjipe Beach is an adventure. 

Unless you own a 4×4, you’ll have to walk about 2 km from the main road, where you need to leave your car to reach the beach. Along the way, stop at the various viewpoints to enjoy the bird’s eye view of the beach. 

Gjipe Beach

The beach is sandy, and in season you can rent a parasol and sun loungers. Also, a few simple beach restaurants are serving fresh seafood and ice-cold drinks in the season. Alternatively, you can bring your own umbrella, water and snacks to last you the day. 

By bus: You can catch a bus/Furgon in Vlore or Tirana direction and ask the driver to drop you off at Gjipe. Expect to pay around 200 Lek (€1.7). From the main road, you’ll have to walk 4 km (1 hour) to get to the beach.

By car: If you’re travelling by car from Himare, it will take around 30 minutes to reach the Gjipe Car Park. From the car park is another 2 km walk to get to the beach.

By taxi: You will get dropped off at the car park and will have to walk the remaining 2 km. Expect to pay €50 for a return trip. 

By boat: Taking a water taxi is probably the most enjoyable way to visit Gjipe Beach. The boat will drop you off at the beach in the morning and collect you in the afternoon. Expect to pay about 2,000 LEK per person (€17)

#9 Jala Beach 

Jala Beach

Jala or Jale Beach is another gorgeous beach near Himare that you may want to visit. It used to be unspoiled like Gjipe, but the beach has been largely commercialised in recent years, with beach bars and parasol rentals covering almost the entire beach. Jala Beach is known for its party vibe, with loud music playing in the bars all day long. If this is not your vibe, then choose Gjipe beach or Dhermi Beach for your day trip instead. 

By car: 20 min drive. 

By boat: The boat will drop you off at the beach in the morning and collect you. 

By bus: The bus will drop you off on the main road, from which point there is still a 5 km walk down to the beach. Expect to pay around 200 Lek (€1.7).

#10 Gjiri I Filikurit

Gjiri I Filikurit

Hidden behind a cliff from the main stretch of Himare beaches, about 2.5 km away, are the crystal clear waters of Filikurit Beach. The beach is inaccessible by car, and perhaps for that reason, it is a secret beach of Himare where you can have a peaceful beach day with only a handful of other people or, if you’re lucky, no one at all! 

There are three ways you can access the beach. The first way is to walk following Google maps and climb down the steep rocky cliff down the beach. The other, more enjoyable way, in my opinion, is to hire a kayak or a pedalo for the day and get there from the sea. Filikurit Beach is just around the corner from Potami Beach in Himare. Another way is to get dropped off by a sea taxi and picked up later on, in the afternoon. Just walk to the jetty in the morning, and you can negotiate the price of the service. 

The beach has a dramatic white rock formation, white pebbly sand and crystal-clear water. There is a cold water stream running from the rocks that mixes in the warm seawater! It is such a lovely quiet beach!

#11 Grama Bay

Grama Bay Albania

How to get there: by boat

Best Time: Early morning when the sea conditions are fine

Situated southwest of Himare in the Bay of Grama lays a perfectly untouched little cove amongst dramatic cliff tops and washed by azure, crystal clear waters of the Ionian Sea. Grama Bay is part of the national park, and its flora and fauna are protected. 

What’s unique about this place is that its remote location makes it impossible to get there by car. The only way to visit Grama Bay is to go on a boat tour from Himare. The boat typically leaves in the morning and comes back to Himare in the afternoon. This timing allows for a day spent in this peaceful cove!

Apart from the stunning landscape and a paradisical beach, Grama Bay has a rich history dating back to over 1,500 years ago. The bay was a refuge for ships seeking shelter from the storm. Today, you can find many inscriptions left engraved in the rock walls from different periods in history. ‘Grama’ means word in Greek, and the bay takes its name from its rock inscriptions that were left in honour of various patrons. 

#12 Porto Palermo Castle – Ali Pasha Fortress 

Porto Palermo Castle - Ali Pasha Fortress

How to get there: take a tour or hire a car

Entrance: free

Porto Palermo Castle is situated a few kilometres south of Himarë along the Albanian Riviera on a strip of land that is connected to the mainland only with a narrow passage. It is believed that the castle was built by the powerful leader – Ali Pasha in the 19th century. During the communist regime, the fort served as a Soviet submarine base, and today it is a curious tourist destination! 

Park your car on the road, and walk the narrow stretch of the land to the ruins of the castle for some incredible views of the Ionian Coast. After visiting the fort, head to Porto Palermo Beach for some relaxation and a light lunch!

Himare or Ksamil?

What’s better – Ksamil or Himare Albania? Himare has a much more local and authentic vibe, and it’s way less touristy. As a result, Himare is cheaper, both in terms of eating out and accommodation.

Ksamil is the most famous coastal town on the Albanian Riviera, renowned for its stunning beaches. Ksamil even has the nickname of being the Maldives of Albania! During the high season months of July and August, Ksamil gets super busy and a little pricey.

During these months, it is very hard to find a decent spot on the beach without having to pay for an umbrella and sunbeds rental, and the umbrellas cover the beach almost entirely.

Dhermi or Himare?

What’s better? – Himare or Dhermi? Both towns have similar beaches, and accommodation prices are also very similar.

Dhermi beaches have more of a young vibe with chic beach clubs and a party vibe. Dhermi also has a quaint old town, which is worth visiting even on a day trip.

Himare beaches are way more chilled, with locals, families and couples enjoying a quiet afternoon.

Himare or Sarande?

What’s better? – Sarande or Himare? This depends on whether you prefer to stay in a larger town with more shops and places to eat – Sarande; or a smaller town with a more chilled vibe – Himare.

Sarande is also a great base for visiting the incredible beaches of Ksamil. The hotel prices here are extremely affordable, and it is best for a living-like-a-local experience.

Best Time To Visit Himare?

Livadhi Beach
Livadhi Beach

What’s the Himare weather like? Himare enjoys a mild Mediterranean climate with hot and sunny summers and mild winters where temperatures rarely drop below 10 degrees Celsius. The best time to visit Himare is May to June and September to October when there is plenty of sunshine and temperatures averaging in the mid-20s. If you can, avoid July and August due to the high temperatures reaching the mid-30s and high-season crowds.

Having said that, the Albanian Riviera is way cooler than the mainland during the European summer. When I travelled through Albania in the summer, Southern Albania was a good few degrees cooler than the mainland towns such as Berat or Gjirokaster.

Also, while avoiding Ksamil in July and August is really important, Himare doesn’t tend to get the same amount of foreign tourists. So, if you choose to go between July and August, you should be good too!

You may also like – Saranda Albania – Ultimate Guide to the Town & Beach in Saranda

How Long To Spend In Himare Albania?

Himare Albania Guide

This will depend on the type of traveller you are. There are a lot of amazing places and activities in Albania to try in this area, such as kayaking, paddle boarding, and visiting Gama Bay and Gjipe Beach.

You will need your Himare vacations to last at least seven days to do some of them. But I get that not everyone has seven days to spend in one location. In this case, I recommend spending at least 3-4 days to enjoy the main Himare Albania Beach and 1 or 2 nearby Himare Albania beaches such as Livadhi or Gjipe. 

Himare Restaurants 

Here are some of the best places where to eat in Himare:

Himare Restaurants
River Down Town

Restaurant Merkuri – if you’re looking for great seafood which is reasonably priced, look no further. You can find Merkuri two min walk from the main beach promenade. It doesn’t have any views, but there is a pleasant outdoor seating area. You can get seafood linguine for 700 leks. 

Lefteri’s Tavern – this restaurant also serves a mixture of fresh seafood, pasta and risotto, as well as Albanian/ Greek favourites such as stuffed peppers, moussaka and pasticcio. It is a little more pricey than Merkuri. 

I love Souvlaki – it is situated right on Himare beach and is great for grabbing a quick bite. The menu features souvlaki and salads. 

Taverna To Steki – this place is excellent if you like meat. For vegetarians such as myself, the choice is limited to grilled cheese, stuffed peppers and salads. All those options are great, but you need at least one more person to share it with, as these dishes are normally to share. 

River Down Town – head to River Down Town for a great sunset view and cheap drinks. Situated above Sfageio beach, River Down Town has the perfect location to enjoy the golden hour in Himare and a cool vibe. 

Pasticeri Delight – this place has the best ice cream in town! One scoop is 70 lek, and the choice is incredible – from old-time favourites such as pistachio and Raffaello to bubble gum and cheesecake flavours!!

Big Market Himare – this is probably the biggest supermarket you’ll find in Himare if you’re looking to do your groceries. They have a good selection of products, a deli counter and a fruit stand outside. If you’re looking to get some fresh bread, you can find a small bakery just across the street from Big Market. 

How To Get To Himare?

By plane – Airports in Albania

Unless you’re road-tripping Europe by car, the most likely point of entry to Albania for you will be Tirana International Airport in Albania. Depending on the time of your arrival, you can stay a few nights in the Albanian capital (I recommend staying 1-2 nights) or head directly to Himare.

There is a shuttle bus that connects the Tirana Airport with the city centre. It costs 300 LEK (€3) and gets you to Skanderbeg Square. The main bus terminal that connects Tirana with other major cities is a little away from the city centre. The best way to get there is to grab a taxi. Make sure you confirm the taxi rate before you get inside. 

Terminali – Main Bus Station in Tiranacheck the location here

By Bus – Albania Bus System 

Himare is one of Albania’s more popular seaside towns, and getting here from main cities such as Tirana or Sarande by bus is relatively easy. Here are the most common routes with prices and journey times:

Tirana to Himare Bus – 1,000 lek, 5-7 hours (5:30 am, 1:00 pm, 9:00 pm)

Saranda to Himare Bus – 500 lek 2-3 hours 1:00 pm

Himare to Dhermi Bus – 100 lek 30 min 11:00 am 

Himare to Ksamil – first, get to Sarande and change at  Saranda Bus Stop to Sarande – Butrint bus that cost 100 leks and operates multiple times per day (roughly every half an hour).

Bus stops in Albania are not very well-marked, and sometimes, it is just an agreed place on the road. If you’re ever unsure, just ask one of the local people or your accommodation host for directions. You can find the bus stop in Himare just before a junction where the Big Market is located on the main road (SH8). 

The same applies to timetables. It is extremely rare that there is any official bus timetable that you can find online. This requires you to be a little flexible when travelling in Albania. Just ask your hotel staff or the local people the first thing when you get to the location and plan your trip accordingly. 

My experience of travelling on Albania buses (called forgone) was mostly positive. They are super cheap and mostly efficient. I agree that it would be nice if the timetables were available online. 

Himare to Greece 

If you want to go to Greece from Himare, there are two ways you can do that. 

Take a ferry from Saranda to Corfu. Serenade is 30 minutes away from the Greek island of Corfu, and ferry tickets start at €20. You can either pre-book the ferry online or buy your ticket from one of the tour agencies based in Sarande. 

Take a bus from Himare (or Sarande) to Athens. The buses leave once or twice a day and go all the way to Athens. The approximate cost depending on the season, is €35. You can buy your ticket at Ruci Tours, situated just off Himare Beach. 

By Car – Albania Car Rental

Another option to get to Himare is to rent a car. Car rentals are widely available in Albania, and if you’re flying to Tirana, you can prearrange a car rental with a pick-up at the airport. 

Albanian drivers are notorious for speeding, tailgating and, in general, being reckless, so make sure you are super careful. Always go for the full insurance and take a short video of the car recording all its existing scratches and dents before you drive away from the car rental place. If you don’t want to drive, opt for the buses Albania is known for. 

Other Albania Travel Tips 

Albania Travel Tips


Albania uses their own currency called Albanian LEK. 1 Euro is equivalent to 117 Lek 1 Pound Sterling is 133 Lek, and 1 USD Dollar equals 110 Lek. (2023 Rates)

Most places in Albania still use cash for purchasing goods and services, including shops, restaurants and even hotels. I was only able to pay by card in a few fancy cafes in Tirana. If you’re coming from Euro countries, you will also be able to pay in Euros. However, I advise you to withdraw Lek as the locals seem to always round up the prices if you decide to pay in Euros. 

ATMs in Albania

Cash points in Albania are plenty, and you can find them in all touristy places, including Sarande, Ksamil and Gjirokaster. Most ATMs charge for international cash withdrawals around €3. However, there is one that doesn’t! It’s called Credins Bank, and you can find one in Saranda city centre (with yellow and navy blue colours).  


The official language in Albania is Albanian or Shqipëri – how Albanian people call it. It is a fairly difficult language, but it is always nice to know at least a few phrases to get by. I’m sharing some below, and if you’re interested to learn more about Albania, read the post below, I promise the information I share is super interesting!

100 Fun Facts about Albania

Thank you – Faleminderit

Hi – Përshëndetje

How are you? – Si jeni

Good – Mirë


Albanians eat their main meal at lunchtime, which means that restaurants are open all day, and you can have your dinner as you please – early or late.  

Albanian Food 

Albania has a rich culinary tradition. A lot of the traditional dishes are vegetarian-friendly and resemble Greek food. If you’re a fast-food type of person, you will be very disappointed. In fact, Albania has hardly any international fast-food restaurants! If you enjoy trying traditional dishes, you’ll love Albania. Don’t forget to try Albanian byrek – a fluffy puff pastry with a savoury cottage cheese filling! Albanian dishes in restaurants are great for sharing. If you’re travelling in a group, order a few dishes and share them between you. This way, you get to try more tasty kinds of food!


You’ll be surprised that Albania is still very traditional when it comes to shopping. This means that if you want to buy bread, you need to find a bakery. Meat is sold at the butchers, fruit and veggies at the grocery, and there is even a separate shop for dairy and eggs. This is such a delight to see that Albania hasn’t been overrun by large supermarket chains yet! 

If you’re a sucker for fresh produce, like me, you’ll love Albania as you can find fresh fruits and veggies sold almost on every street by small local shops and for an absolute bargain! 

Like me? PIN me for later! 🙂

Himare Albania Beaches includes Livadhi Beach, Gjipe Beach, Himare Castle and more | Himarë Albania | Himare Beach | Albanian Riviera | Himare things to do and more tips! | Albania Travel | The Balkans

Similar Posts


  1. Hi! My partner and I are looking to stay at Himare next year and then travel to Saranda. We are struggling to find information regarding traveling via bus from Himare to Saranda. I am assuming it runs considering that you can get to Himare via the same route. If you could please provide us with any information that would be greatly appreciated.

    Loved your page

    1. Hi Dane, Albania’s bus system is a little tricky as they normally don’t provide any bus schedules online. But, there are several buses that run from Himare to Saranda. The bus stop is located in front of the Big Market in Himare, and there is definitely a 9 am bus Vlore to Saranda that stops in Himare. Some Tirana-Saranda buses also stop in Himare. There will definitely be a few options, and I would ask your accommodation host for an up-to-date timetable when you arrive in Himare. I hope this helps! Mal

  2. Hi! My husband and I are planning to visit Himare in mid October. Will it be too empty? Will most of the restaurants and bars be shut?
    Everywhere I read ( including your blog) that October is a good time to visit Himare and swim etc .
    However , I also read on some
    pages that a lot of stuff will be shut. Please advise .

    1. Hi Pooja, October is definitely off-season in Himare, but it’s not the same as in some small Greek islands where everything shuts at this time. You should still have plenty of restaurants to choose from. But yes, some businesses may also be closed.

Comments are closed.