The Himara fortress is a cultural monument as old as 3500 years!

There is a very interesting castle with an incredible view, just a few kilometers from the coast and one of the most famous and most loved Albanian beaches.

In the town of Himara, not far from the popular Vlora and Dhermi, on top of a hill surrounded by steep rocks, at 240 meters above sea level, an old town known as Himara Castle or Babakus situated itself.



Himara Castle, Photo: zm_photo, Depositphotos


It is an old city that developed, according to some researchers, around 3500 years ago. It is said to have been founded by the Greek tribe of Chaonians who inhabited this area.

The settlement then got its fortification in the 8th century BC and was surrounded by about 500-1000 meters long walls.


Himara Castle, Photo: zm_photo, Depositphotos


Although it developed centuries before, the first records of its existence were written down by the Roman writer Pliny in the first century. He described it in the words: “On the coast of Epirus, on the Ceraunian mountains, is the fortress of Himara. Beneath the fountain of royal water.”

Over the centuries, the castle changed several times, and the most significant changes were made in the 6th century AD under the reign of Emperor Justinian from the Byzantine Empire. This is visible in some parts inside the fort, and mostly in the churches that date from that era.


Himara Castle, Photo: Photo: Pasztilla aka Attila Terbócs, CC BY-SA 4.0


The castle soon became a very strong center, and then the center of the diocese of Himara. At that time, in the 8th century, many churches were built both inside and outside the city walls.

The most famous is the Episcopal Church (Kisha e Episkopise), which has a double-headed eagle on it, a symbol of great importance to Albania, which comes from the Kastrioti and Myzakai families, known for owning large amounts of land.

Inside the walls are the church of St. Sergius and Bacchus and the church of St. Maria Kasopitra.


Church of St. Marije Kasopitre, Himara castle, Photo: zm_photo, Depositphotos


After the Middle Ages, sometime in the 16th century, the Himara castle was abandoned due to its better position by the sea, and from then on, the present-day town of Himara began to develop. A little later, houses were built under the castle, where people still live today, and they are also available for rent.

While walking through the streets of the old town, you will enjoy the spirit of the past, which today holds the title of a cultural monument in Albania. It also has beautiful views and great places to take photos, so make sure to not miss it!





Once I saw that there was a bigger world out there, so I made myself be a part of it.

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