To someone who has lived in Korça for a long while, is almost impossible to ask the must visits in a daily trip to the city, but it happened that I’m in charge of this task and I’m not planning to give it up. For sure 24 hours are not enough for a culture geek, considering that Korça is the second city after Tirana with the highest numbers of museums, considering the city itself is a museum and a reflection of the traditional Albanian culture, with a little, but just e little of a french touch.
Anyhow, besides showing you what I did in my 24 hours in Korça, I’m here to recommend you some really good places to get the real local taste and where you will be welcomed, treated greatly and leave with a sincere smile.
Learn what’s the best way to spend 24 hours in Korça (in my opinion)!
9 am – Morning coffee at the Old Bazaar
Even if you had breakfast somewhere else, a refreshing drink is never too much when in Korça during the summer season. It can get hot even there! The morning time will often bring a lot of people to those many bars of the Old Bazaar, and you can always choose a different spot to sit on and enjoy a different view. The advice is worth any season as the area is open 12 months per year and still remains a main meeting and starting point as it is located near the city centre.
10 am – Cycling around the city
As you are full of energy, I’d recommend you have a city tour by yourself by renting a bike. You can easily find them at the entrance of the Bazaar and pay a small fee to use them. I like to first head to the “Rinia” Park and ride amongst the trees, after passing by the “Republika” Boulevard. If you are accompanied by a local, they will show you so many monuments along the way.
If you are not able to use the bicycle, here’s the perfect ride for you. The Korça city tour bus that will take you easily around the city. You can find it between the panoramic tower and the theatre.
11 am – Climb up to Morava
To be honest, I’ve never climbed the mount myself, I always drove to, but I see so many locals walking up all the time and I applaud them sincerely. I dare you to reach the Big Cross close the Saint Ilia church up in Morava Mount. The view is incredible and you can observe the city from above. There is a bar, a restorant and a casino near, if you like to relax or try your chances.
1 pm Lunch & Talks
The gastronomy is the strongest point of Korça. You can find italian and greek food, like pasta, pizza & souvlaki, you can find tasty crepes, the best grilled meat accomanied with the freshest salads and sauces. Here’s a few suggestions for your midday meal:
- Find Four
- Fiks si Qemoti
- Life Gallery
- La Creperia
3 pm – Panoramic Tower
Just a few metres from the Bazaar, you can take the stairs or the elevator to the panoramic RED tower just at the entrance of the main promenade. You can get a better view of the Cathedral and less of the promenade, since the spring has covered the trees with so many leaves. During winter, as the trees are naked with only a hood made of snow, the view of the promenade get better. You can also feel closer the Mount Morava and have a glance of that white cross up in the hill.
4 pm – Gjon Mili Museum & Mesonjetorja
As the day as properly started, a few steps from the tower, you can visit both museums. Gjon Mili is a photo museum, hosted in a beautiful and old yellow building. Gjon Mili is an American photographer with Albanian origin, who has photographed even Picacco. You will find this and other historical photographs while exploring this modern museum.
Just in front of it you will find the first school of Albania “Mesonjetorja Shqipe” where you can learn a lot about the first teachers of Korca and other important names of the city.
6 pm Aperitif Time
I visited Park Plazza for the first time and I was lucky to get a place to sit in the veranda part. It gets so crowdy and full of beautiful young people. It’s built recently and I loved the interior because of the huge plants and glass walls. It’s the right place to chill for a bit while having your first alcoolic drink of the day, warming up for the night. There is good music and vibes and you don’t even have to dress up. Any style is welcomed!
8 pm – Dining, singing and dancing
Dining in Korça is an unforgettable experience. There is live music at almost every restaurant and you can sing with them or even dance if you like. Whether you choose traditional food or not, you will love it. Don’t forget the desert made with the original Korça recipes. Here’s a few dining places you might consider:
- Sidheri guesthouse
- Vila 95
- Vila Cofiel
- Hani i Pazarit
- Sky View Restaurant
11 pm – Party time
Is it weekend? If yes, you gotta party! Korça gets noisy at night too, not only at Christmas. You need to pass by “Republica” boulevard and the Old Bazaar because that’s where the parties take place. Celebrating your birthday in Korça is a good choice fi you’re looking for another city besides Tirana. You might also save a little. Here’s a few places you might consider if you are a party person:
- Republica Housepub
- C’era una volta
- Mon Amour
Sleep fresh and well
You better think of the accommodation before coming to this point, but even if you forget to book a place, you can for sure find a good place to sleep even at night. I mean, if it’s not Christmas. Booking your hotel room 1 week ahead may be enough if it’s a week day, but you must book earlier if you want to enjoy one of the best places during the weekend. I had a look around the hotels and guesthouses and I can strongly recommend you these ones:
- Vila Sonnet
- Vila Ebel
- Sidheri Guesthouse
- In gallery
- Mergan Hotel
- Traco’s Home
After a great day and a good night sleep, you will thank me for encouraging you to visit one of the most interesting cities in Albania. Theres a lot to do in the suburbs too, such as Voskopoja, Dardha, Boboshtica, Vithkuqi and I invite you to learn more about them with just one click.
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