If you have not read my post introducing you to Albania it is HERE. That will bring you up to date and make sense of what you will be seeing today. We are headed from the bottom of the Hill in historic Berat to the fortress at the top. It would be quite a hike up hill so we are on the bus again. We are on a very narrow dirt road and to the left of it is the town cemetery. People of all the religions that live in the village are buried here. The Muslims, the Christians and the Jews, together. It was smallish and as we passed there were women along the side of the road selling flowers for the cemetery. I dearly would have liked to talk with those women! But, it was not to be. I was lucky I could get a photo of the cemetery or the road at all, since I was on the bus and the dirt road was very bumpy. The rows are numbered on the rock wall surrounding the cemetery, if one is looking for a particular grave.
The fortress of Berat has been considerably damaged over the centuries, but it is still considered a worthwhile historical place and recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The buildings inside the fortress were built during the 13th century and are preserved as cultural monuments also. The people, who still live inside the fortress, are Christian. At one time there were twenty churches and one mosque up here. The mosque was used for the Turkish garrison that resided here. Most of the churches are in ruins today and the only remains of the mosque is the base of the minaret.
When the bus parked we were still a hike away from the fortress. These photos were taken from the base of the fortress.
Here was the entrance to the road up to the hill.
The sign of what is up here…………..
Then we got to the first entrance.
and could see some of the surrounding landscape.
These gentlemen were at the second entrance to greet us, playing an accordion and a tambourine. Mind it was only 100 degrees outside. Some of our group stayed at the hotel or restaurant because it was sooooooooo hot!
The women sold traditional dress and tablecloths, but it was hard to find them since they were staying inside to keep cool.
As I came down the hill I noticed this pile of stone at the bottom of the hill. Men were laying the new stone road. One piece at a time, in this heat!
And we came upon this happy couple walking up the hill to have their wedding photographs taken! Oh Happy Day!
Next we are going to a restaurant right up here on the mountain! See you there!
Have a great door week! Look here to see what others are doing for Norm’s Doors!
It’s easy to do Norm’s Doors. Photograph some doors and post them to Thursday Doors on Thursday!
PS All photos were taken on our IPhones this year……..we are traveling lighter!