The capital of Albania is impressive right away. There are cities in which you immediately feel comfortable as it happens in Tirana. The city is eclectic but not aggressive. Lots of trees. Lots of space. Very friendly shopkeepers, waiters, hosts of rented housing.
This vibrant, natural, growing and developing city certainly deserves your visit.
Albanian dictator Enver Hoxha ruled the country for forty years. His interpretation of communism was the strict iron curtain and total repression. He thought that the country is always surrounded by enemies, constantly awaiting attacks from outside. Because of that shelter bunkers were built all over the country. Something about 700 thousand pieces in all villages and cities.
The main bunker in Tirana has been converted to a museum of totalitarianism. One of the scariest museums in the world.
Thousands and thousands of ruined people, maimed destinies. In Albania all religions were banned. All the foreigners coming to the country, right at the airport were forced to shave beards as it was considered as a probable sign of belonging to Islam. The museum exposition impresses. Long lists of repressed people. Photos. Stories of entire families. This is a must see and remember.
After forty years of terror the city is now rebuilt and put in order. But Albanians still have a lot of work ahead. Anyway Tirana is really nice and worth a visit.