The Albanian Riviera

Jal beach, a 5km drive down a decent side-road from the village of Vumoni, has been well and truly 'discovered' in the last few years and an ever expanding morass of concrete threatens to overwhelm it. Still, if you can close your eyes to this then the horseshoe shaped beach itself remains beautiful. Fresh seafood is bountiful in Jal and there are plenty of beachside restaurants in summer.

Don't miss the easy 15-minute walk south towards Aquarium, a sublime hidden cove. Out of season, you'll likely have it to yourself.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby The Albanian Riviera attractions

1. Livadhi Beach

1.44 MILES

Himara's longest stretch of beach is Livadhi, just north of the town. It's certainly very attractive but development hasn't been kind, with a slew of…

2. Vuno

1.48 MILES

Vuno is a tiny hillside village above picturesque Jal beach. Each summer Vuno's primary school is filled with blow-up beds and it becomes Shkolla Hostel…

3. Gjipe Beach

1.73 MILES

Between Dhërmi and Vuno is the turn-off for this little-known gem, a gorgeous stretch of isolated white sand and rock backed by big cliffs – and as yet…

4. Himara Castle

1.82 MILES

Himara is mainly known for its beaches, but its Old Town on the hills high above the seafront is an interesting place to stroll around. One highlight is…

5. Himara Beach

2.57 MILES

There are two main beaches in Himara. The northern one is the main town beach and has a promenade lined with cafes and bars. Around the headland to the…

6. Dhërmi

3.85 MILES

Dhërmi beach is well and truly under the tourist trance in summer: expect booked-out accommodation, loud music and half of Tirana sprawled on the stones…

7. Drymades

5.59 MILES

One of the more attractive beaches on the Albanian Riviera is Drymades. It's a long, shingle white beach backed by olive groves and the first stirrings of…

8. Porto Palermo

6.15 MILES

In a picturesque bay just south of Himara, this 19th-century fortress, also known as the Castle of Ali Pasha, makes for an interesting stop-off along the…