Alongside Albania’s most beautiful traditional houses and the city’s famous limestone and shale paved roads, the city houses, lies the Castle of Gjirokastra, one of the oldest in the Balkans! The “city of stone” offers a number of authentically rich culinary delights and memorable panoramas of the surrounding mountainous. The main characteristic of Gjirokastra is the intensive use of stone in building the houses, which look like small fortresses, the streets of cobblestone, which all lead to Bazaar, the Mosque of Bazaar here, built in 1557. Due to all these features, Gjirokastra is also known as the “The Stone City”.

Built for safety purposes in a strategic part of the valley, the Gjirokaster Castle has been around since the 12th and 13th Centuries. However, the current structure differs greatly from the original design.

The initial constructions were raised by the Despots of Epirus, which were a branch of the Byzantine Empire. But the fortification’s fantasy book looks come from improvements made under Ottoman rule. The most recent of those being renovations and westward addition done by Ali Pasha of Tepelena.