Clinging onto the side of a hill, the town of Gjirokastra is a beautifully preserved setting of grey stone houses, grey slated roofs, and cobbled streets. The castle sits brooding at the top of the hill dominating the skyline. It’s one of the few towns in Albania that was saved from the ravages of Hoxha’s reconstructions because of its significant history — it was also Hoxha’s birthplace.

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