• Vatican City!

    Vatican City: Vatican Museums. Go Now!

    Vatican City
    The smallest country in the world offers the heart of Catholicism and among the world's finest art collections, including the Sistine Chapel and the Raphael Rooms (ceiling pictured). Go to Vatican City!

  • Macedonia!

    Macedonia: Traditional architecture. Go Now!

    Macedonia is a country still finding its unique identity, but its architecture is already one of a kind. Explore Macedonia!

  • Netherlands!

    Netherlands: Wooden shoes. Go Now!

    This low country might be small, but it maintains a unique place in history and culture. Explore the Netherlands!

  • Austria!

    Austria: Belvedere Palace. Go Now!

    Belvedere Palace (pictured) is just one of many palaces found in Vienna. The capital is a good start to Austria, which also features the Alps, the Lakes District, and incredible history & food. Go Now!

  • Ukraine!

    Ukraine: Traditional Village. Go Now!

    Ukrainian culture is based on village life, particularly that found in the Carpathian Mountains (pictured). Begin Your Journey!

  • Latvia!

    Latvia: Art Nouveau in Riga. Go Now!

    Latvia is small, but has a diverse history, foods, and architecture (shown), which includes aspects from both Eastern and Western Europe. Begin Your Journey!

Architecture of Albania

Albanian Architecture - Gjirokaster

The earliest examples of architecture to be found in Albania can be found in Butrint, which has been occupied by the Greeks, Romans, and Venetians among others. Although these sites are now in ruins, they provide the best example of this architectural age in Albania.

The next major influences to Albania came in quick succession in the 1200-1300s with the Byzantines and in the 1400s with the Ottoman Turks. The city of Berat is home to the best remaining examples of Byzantium architecture, although much of the city is in the Ottoman style. The town of Gjirokastra is primarily in the Ottoman style as well, much of which was built in the 1600-1700s.

Albanian Architecture - Modern Shkoder
Modern Shkoder

In the 1930s and 1940s, the Italians built a number of buildings, but shortly after World War II, a new Albanian government came to power, who destroyed nearly all the country's historic architecture. A few of the Italian buildings remain, but little else outside the cities of Berat and Gjirokastra survived. Tirana was nearly leveled and the old was replaced with new Soviet-styled buildings, which is the modern face of the city and country as a whole; a style that is best represented by concrete facades build, above all else, for use, not style.

This page was last updated: March, 2013