11 Best Things to Do in Korca


Published on 5 July 2023

Korca (Korca or Korça) is only a three hour bus ride away from Tirana, yet feels like it’s completely off the tourist trail. It has a bustling city, a stunning residential area full of interesting architectural points, and is surrounded by beautiful mountains that make great viewpoints over the city. Korca really feels authentic, and is the perfect destination to add to your Albanian itinerary to step away and catch your breath.

So, if Korca isn’t really on the tourist trail, is there much for tourists to do or see? Yes. We spent three nights in Korca and didn’t get bored with the place. In fact, our fondness for the place kept on growing. Could we see ourselves living here? Yes. Sign me up.

Pop of colour

How to Get to Korca

Most major cities seem to have links straight to Korca. It has a huge bus station so is pretty well-connected with the rest of the country.

We came from Gjirokaster to Korca and it cost us 1500 Lek and took about five hours. The bus leaves at 7am and takes you on a really scenic route. The landscapes are stunning, however, the roads are particularly windy. I’m not someone that gets travel sick, and at the half way point stop off, I felt rough. It took me the whole thirty minute break to get myself back together. So, maybe get yourself some travel sickness tablets.

From Korca we went north to Pogradec on the Albanian side of Lake Ohrid. It took about an hour and cost 250 Lek. The buses leave every 30 minutes from Korca, so this would make a nice day trip.

Things to Do in Korca

Venture the Neighbourhood Behind the Orthodox Cathedral

The architecture round here is amazing and has such variety. Some buildings are really historic and crumbling, some have Ottoman influence, some Romanian, some have a retro and even communist feel to them. A real eclectic mix, yet it all works together. We spent a good three hours wandering around exploring each nook and cranny, but if we had more time, I probably could have spent a full day!

Take a look at the Orthodox Cathedral (Ringjallja e Krishtit) too. It is a stunning building and has intricate painting and artwork on all the walls and ceiling inside. It’s pretty new with the build being completed in 1995.

Exposed brickwork on dilapidated buildings, Korca

Exposed brickwork on dilapidated buildings

Korca Orthodox Cathedral, things to do in Korca

Korca Orthodox Cathedral

See where Shën Gjergji Church Once Stood

Shën Gjergji Orthodox Church was destroyed during the communist regime to make way for a library. Along Bulevardi Shën Gjergji, you can see the outline of where the church used to stand and a plaque to ensure that the history is not lost.

Shen Gjergji church

Reminder of where the church used to stand before communism

Find the Prominent Architectural Spots

The eclectic mix of architectural styles that I mentioned earlier isn’t just confined to the backstreets. Find the theatre, the ‘cheese’ building, the yellow Romanian house and cinema. Each is unique and in some cases, bizarre.

Yellow Romanian house, things to do in Korca

Romanian house

Cheese building

Cheese building

Climb the Red Tower Viewpoint

What appears to be a randomly placed tower at the end of Bulevardi Shën Gjergji acts as a viewpoint over the city. And that’s really all there is to this tower. Pay 50 LEK to go up, see the view, take a couple of photos and come back down.

Red tower viewpoint, things to do in Korca

Red Tower

City views from Red Tower, things to do in Korca

City view from Red Tower

Be Wowed at the National Museum of Medieval Art

We’re not artsy people, and generally, art museums, galleries etc. are not on our list. However, this is one of the exceptions. Honestly, the art was phenomenal and it’s all ancient which makes it all the more impressive. There is so much gold everywhere too. The entrance way is, just, wow. Photography is banned, so nothing to show you but the outside of the museum. 100% worth a visit. Entrance is 700 lek.

National Museum of Medieval Art, things to do in Korca

National Museum of Medieval Art

Take a Free Walking Tour with Eugene

Eugene really know his stuff when it comes to Korca. We went on a really in-depth tour around the city and to areas that you wouldn’t even know or think to explore. One of our favourite walking tours that we have taken in the Balkans. Give him a shout.

Korca Brewery and Beer Garden

So, while in Korca, its compulsory to drink Korca beer, right? Head over to Korca beer garden to drink straight from the source (the brewery is next door). Don’t have too high expectations though. The service here is not great, so you need to be a bit pushy to get your drink. Don’t wait for the servers to come to you, order at the bar instead.

You can also tour the brewery, but it seems there is no standard procedure for going about doing this. We asked at the beer garden about a tour, and they told us to turn up tomorrow at 10am. Grand.

We turned up to the brewery, and there was no official tour or anything of the sort organised. They didn’t seem to even be expecting us. We asked if we could have a look around anyway. A guy who spoke perfect English showed us round the whole site giving us loads of information as we went, and then gave us a ‘taster’ of the beer (which was much much more than a taster. Chris was beyond chuffed!) And our guide refused to take any payment at the end, not even a tip.

Korca brewery

Korca Brewery

Korca Brewery Tasting Room

Korca Brewery Tasting Room

Korca Brewery Beer Taster

The largest taster you ever did see

Walk Up to the Martyrs’ Cemetery for Astounding Views

You’re best off following the route on Maps.me. There are a lot of steps up and it’s not particularly well maintained, some slabs are broken. But once you make it to the top and look back at the city, the views go on forever. A great spot to view sunset. It’ll probably be about twenty/thirty minutes of walking up from the Orthodox Cathedral.

City Views from the Martyrs' Cemetery

Never ending views of Korca

Venture up to Shën Ilia Church (St. Ilia Church)

Follow the path round the back of the Martyr’s Cemetery (again best to follow this on Maps.me). You’ll then make it to a very quiet road and you can follow this up to St. Ilia Church. It’s a small church with a big cross that sits on top of a hill overlooking the city. The church itself is very modestly decorated inside and the views from outside were worth the climb. We ventured up in the midday heat of summer (not such a good plan), but it took us about an hour/hour and a half.

St. Ilia Church, things to do in Korca

St. Ilia Church and stunning views

Inside decoration of St. Ilia church, Korca

Sparse decoration inside St. Ilia Church

Swing by the First Albanian Language School

Up until the school was established in 1887, teaching in Albanian was only carried out in secret because of the enforcement during Ottoman rule. It’s great to take a look, maybe some photos and understand the importance of the building, however, the museum that now resides here is not worth going in.  On the Korca free walking tour, you will learn about this and you will get a much better insight from your guide than from the museum.

Albanian language school, things to do in Korca

Albanian Language School courtyard

Visit the Pazari (Old Bazaar)

This is high on most people’s to do lists, but it didn’t make enough of an impression on me to be very high on mine. Yes, there are the historic hans (inns), such as Hani I Pazarit which has been beautifully renovated into a hotel. But I feel like there has been a little too much restoration in the bazaar and it seems to have lost its charm. There are plenty of restaurants and cafes to choose from in this area, so it is very much the place to be in the evenings.

Korca Pazari

Cobbled streets of the Pazari

Where to Find Tasty Vegetarian Food

We managed to find really tasty vegetarian food throughout Albania. Find out which dishes to look out for in our post here.


Anitka does the most delicious hand-made pasta. We had the pasta with creamy truffle sauce and a simple pasta with cherry tomatoes. Both were beautiful. (We came back for a second portion of the truffle pasta the next day.) Also worth noting is the cheese croquette starter with cherry jam.

Just phenomenal

and again… phenomenal


Find Four has plenty of veggie/vegan options. We went for the white bean lakror pie (a Korca speciality) and a quinoa salad. There is a lovely outside seating area too.

lakror pie, things to do in Korca

Lakror pie

Quinoa salad

Restorant Bujtina Liceu

Restorant Bujtina Liceu sits opposite a French language school and offers several options for vegetarians. The outdoor seating area under vines makes the perfect place to stop for a coffee too. The pllaka (large casseroled beans) and the fried mushrooms are really tasty.


Have you been to Korca? Is there anything else you would add?

I’d love to hear your thoughts, recommendations or questions.

Thanks for reading!

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1 Comment

  1. Joanne Dawson

    Another brilliant addition guys!

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