Culture

Archeological sites: There are several significant archaeological sites on Albanian Alps. These include coins from the Illyrian Period, specimens of jewellery and paintings in the cave, to the fortifications, castles and bridges, etc. Due to this importance, the centre of Theth valley is declared “historical zone” by the Albanian Government in 2017. 

The Grunas Settlement, in Theth, Shala Valley is a fortified prehistoric settlement (9th century B.C.) reoccupied in the Medieval or Modern period. There is oldest quarters in Theth, a small architectural complex.

 In Okol quarter, Theth, in 2005 two small pieces of possibly prehistoric pottery were found.

Archaeologists have found Illyrian coins in Selcë, Kelmend and ceramic fragments, copper and iron tools, animal fossils and charcoal drawings from the Bronze Age, indicating early settlements in this area. 

The road station, Rosujë can be found 6 km to the south-west of Bajram Curri and is situated on a hill with two crests overlooking the Valbona river valley. It appears that it might have been occupied from the Early Iron Age to the 5th century AD. The site was first defended in the 4th century B.C. 

Additionaly, the Medieval Castle of Dakaj, Shala Valley, Late Antique Castle, Dragobi, The Medieval Castle of Dakaj, Shala Valley is located above the Shala River, the Medieval Castle Selimaj was built 14th century, known as “Kalaja e Lekës”, the Medieval fortress, of Cernicë in Valbona are some other sites to be explored by visitors.

Kulla Shqiptare/Banesa dhe muzeumet

Tower houses: in the Alps and in the surrounding there are many towers and museums, some of which are also declared a cultural monument. The traditional Albanian stone house known as a kulla is found predominantly in the Alps. In the face of attacks from various armies, the kulla became a necessity in mountainous regions as a place of refuge, largely because villages were so scattered, making coordinated defence complicated. Some kullas were designed to provide safe havens in the case of blood feuds. 

Among them we can mention the Kulla of  Mic Sokoli Bajram Curri, the historic museum of Theth, the Kulla e Ngujimit  in Theth, the Kulla e Thepit in Nikaj Mertur. In addition to these cultural monuments, there are also beautiful towers (kulla) that do not hold a protected status but are in good shape and are worth visiting. 

Literature trails: These paths allow you to discover the role of biodiversity through the literary heritage of the northern Alps. Wander through the landscape of Ismail Kadare’s Broken April; investigate the cultural use and meaning of the region’s flora through ethno-botanist Franz Nopçe’s travel memoirs; or trace Mary Edith Durham’s footsteps through the landscape, culture and legends of her beloved High Albania. The literary heritage trails encourage you to explore the communities and landscapes that have shaped the country’s identity and that continue to inspire visitors who venture into its rugged natural beauty. 

Bunkers: One of the country's defining features of those bygone times, however, can still be seen littering the landscape: hundreds and hundreds of little 'pillbox' bunkers bulging like big grey mushrooms from the pastoral lands. Some have found new uses, e.g. as bars but most are simply left to rot.  Even in the far Alps bunkers were built, which have been placed in strategic points, especially near the border of the country, which at that time were used to preserve the borders. Nowadays, they are important ruins as they represent a part of history;  they are also used as shelter by the shepherds who go to pasteurise their breed in the highlands during the summer. 

Dark Tourism, Shkodra: The Site of Witness and Memory in Shkodra is the only memorial site in Albania which commemorates the victims of the inhuman communist regime from Shkodra. The communist-era crimes museum in Shkodra has become the most visited museum in the northern metropolis, due to the painful history it carries.