Berat, also known as the City of Thousand Windows, is a delightful UNESCO city full of Ottoman-era houses, remarkable fortress constructions, and mystical churches and mosques, all nestled on the side of the hills and mountains that sandwich the Osum River and waiting to be explored, don’t know where to go and what to do in Berat? we will help you.
Berat is a city that you should not miss when visiting Albania, with its countless magnificent architectures, Berat castle and its photogenic vista, and your first sneak peek at Xhiro, a strange but fascinating Albanian tradition.

How To Get around Berat?

Berat is a very compact and walkable city. If you want to take in the panoramic views, bring your best walking shoes because some of the stone streets are still quite steep and uneven. Berat Kala (castle) needs a lengthy uphill climb, so go early in the morning or late in the afternoon when you’re feeling energetic.

Visit Berat Castle

Berat Castle Albania

You must add Visit Berat Castle to your What to do in Berat list, The Osum River valley is painted with a long brushstroke of chestnut-coloured rooftops that make up Berat’s historic centre. On either side, twin peaks rise. Gorica Hill, the taller of the two, wears a stony crown: Berat Castle, built in the 13th century.
Berat Kalaja is Albania’s largest castle. Berat Castle, unlike other fortifications in the region, has remained mostly intact over time. Within its walls are a vast citadel complex of stone streets, houses, and Byzantine churches interspersed with ruins from various epochs.

Many families still live within the citadel walls, the area is also known as the ‘Castle Quarter.’ Some houses have been turned into guesthouses, restaurants, or gift shops. Others are still private homes. The designated lookout platforms provide the best panoramic views of Berat, but nice views can be found almost anywhere – including epic sunsets. Berat Castle is a long, steep climb up a slick stone road from the lower town, but it’s worth it for the beautiful setting.

The Holy Trinity Church

Berat Castle Church Albania

The Church of Saint Trinity (Kisha Shen Triadha), built in the 13th and 14th centuries, is another significant Berat landmark. This church’s designer was both inspired and resourceful. The architecture contains Byzantine and Western elements, and several of the column capitals inside are repurposed from ancient ruins.

Even if you don’t go inside, the views of the domed church sitting atop the hillside are worth seeing.

The Onufri Iconography Museum

The Onufri Iconography Museum

The Onufri Iconography Museum was founded to protect a collection of icons, artworks, and artefacts recovered from the ruins of Berat’s religious structures.
If you only go to one museum in Berat, I think you should go to this one rather than the Ethnographic Museum. It provides a glimpse into a unique and enchanting aspect of Albanian history.
The Onufri Museum is housed within the castle grounds in the Church of the Dormition of St. Mary, a triple-nave Byzantine basilica that’s been restored in 1797. The entrance leads to a section of the cathedral that has been preserved, where you can see the original altar, amvona, and Bishop’s Throne, all of which are covered in ornate frescoes and wood carvings.

The museum’s second section is gallery-style. A substantial collection of Orthodox icons, paintings, and other ephemera is displayed against whitewashed walls. There are a few works by Onufri, the 16th-century archpriest and painter who inspired the name of the institution.

Visit The National Ethnographic Museum

Ethnographic Museum of Berat

Back across the river, Mangalem houses Berat’s National Ethnographic Museum, one of the city’s grandest Ottoman-era houses. We’ve seen a dozen of these residence museums in the Balkans, but Berat’s is the largest and one of the most impressive.
The house is built up as it would’ve been when it was first built, as is customary. Surprisingly, the bathroom is also visible here.

Mangalem Quarter

One of the things to Do in Berat is visit Mangalem Quarter. Berat is divided into two precincts by the river valley: Mangalem (Mangalemi) and Gorica. Today, there is no discernible difference between the two – but in centuries past, Mangalem was the Ottoman or Muslim Quarter, with Christians living across the river in Gorica.

Berat Old Town is made up of all of them. Mangalem, the larger of the two communities, spreads out beneath the castle’s wing. Houses creep up the hillside like vines drawn to the sun, all vying for a sliver of that priceless Berat view.

Enjoy The Traditional Food Of Berat

Adding Food to our Things to Do in Berat list is not a mistake, If you’ve spent time travelling around the Balkans, you’ll notice some noticeable differences in Albanian cuisine. Albanian cuisine is a flavorful and refreshing alternative. There are a few special dishes here that you won’t find anywhere else in the country – you must definitely try at least a few. 

Summing Up

Swimming, rafting, and hiking are just a few of the summer activities in Berat, while many of the city’s other attractions are open all year, so there is no shortage of things to do in Berat. if you visit Berat we recommend you go with our what to do and see in Albania list or our one-day tour list.