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Relaxed, attractive centre, historical bits and pieces dotted about town, beaches
Mafia, Poverty, Corruption
In a nutshell
Albania's Las Vegas
Housed inside a Venentian tower at the base of the Byzantine walls, the Bar Torra has a prime location, and the views of the sea from its open-air turret are worth a coffee. The cafe was the first private establishment in the city, but it still retains all the old communist eastern european charm. Our waiter, when he bothered to show up, was so shocked to discover we wanted to see the menu that he nearly blew the ash off the end of the cigarette stuck to his lower lip. Nobody came to give us the bill in over an hour, so we paid it downstairs. There were more looks of shock when we tipped them. Well, why not? You don't get service like that these days.
You can probably just go up the tower for free. Many people just did. I think they were under the impression it was a tourist attraction rather than a functioning cafe. The staff didn't seem to care. Coffee was ok, service was interesting, the views good, and the price very good. When you've run out of things to do in Durres, you can kick back here until the next train or bus comes.
Written May 16, 2007
Address: Sheshi Mujo Ulqinaku Square
I have to admit that it maybe wasn't the brightest thing to go to Albania during off season, but what should I have done when FIFA fixed the playing schedule so that we would meet them away in September...?
One of the places in Durres that was still attracting a crowd was the Fly Bar in the old part of town. Very high building where the bar was on the top floor with a terrace without a roof on the sides.
A bit shady to get up there, as the elevator didn't go all the way up, but the view that then welcomed us made it all worth it. It's really high!
Fly Bar is one of the more classy bars in Durres, and it's not the place you go to dressed in shorts and flip flops. The drinks were a bit more expensive then we were used to, but still way cheaper than in western Europe.
Not so much people in september, but I can imagine it's a really nice (and crowded) place during high season.
Dress Code: No dress code written as we could see, but I can imagine they wouldn't be too happy to serve you if you come badly dressed.
Written Oct 23, 2010