Saranda

Star Travel Rating

3/5

Review type

Destination

Location

Travelled with

On your own

Product name

Product country

Product City

Reasons for trip

Date of travel

March, 2017

The Bradt guide describes Saranda as an “unappealing concrete jungle”. This does seem rather a harsh description even though it is a modern town with a lot of high rise buildings built during the 1990s construction boom.

It is a popular tourist town, particularly with Albanians who come here for their summer holidays. It has a long expanse of beach as well as a lot of hotels and cafes. Corfu is just over a mile across the bay and there is a regular ferry service for day trips in both directions.

A new promenade has been built along the sea front with many attractive marble statues. There is also a stylish new mosque.

Saranda is very much a modern development and little remains of its history, all having been destroyed in the 1990s developments. Unlike many places in Albania, it was never a Roman colony although must have been reasonably prosperous as a wall was built round the settlement in the C4th. Part of this can be seen next to the remains of a C5th synagogue in the town centre.

On the top of a hill on the outskirts of the town are the remains of “Lekuresi Castle.”:https://www.silvertraveladvisor.com/review/attraction/174515-review-lekuresi-castle This is now a restaurant and little is left of the original fortification. It has wonderful views across the bay.

Although there isn’t a lot to attract the foreign tourist, Saranda a regular stop on most itineraries as it is a popular jumping off point for the ancient remains at “Butrint,”:http://wasleys.org.uk/eleanor/otherholidays/albania/day_three/index.html ten miles south.

ESW

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