Bunkers of Albania

Bunkers of Albania

No matter where you go in Albania, chances are extremely high that you’ll encounter at least a couple of these UFO-like structures scattered around fields and even people’s gardens. They are an essential part of the Albanian landscape, and I’ve gotta tell you, their story impressed me a lot!

Bunkers of Albania scattered across the field

I’ve done a bit of research in a Bradt guidebook of Albania and Wikipedia, and here’s what I’ve found: these bunkers were constructed during the 40-year reign of Enver Hoxha, leader of the People’s Socialist Republic of Albania. He was a radical leader, and also a quite paranoid one, since he built an astonishing 700,000 bunkers, 1 for every 4 inhabitants. (!!) I’ve gotta admit, although we saw a lot of bunkers, I never expected there would be so much of them. It turns out, these bunkers were never actually used during the Communist Regime, and pretty much drained the country’s much-needed resources, money which they could’ve spent on building a better infrastructure. Today the bunkers of Albania are mostly abandoned, whilst some were turned into cafes, or even shelters for the homeless. They vary in size, some can fit only 1 person, whilst others can house a large family. They are an essential part of the Albanian landscape today, so if you ever go through the country, be prepared for this sight!

Large Bunker in Albania

Bunkers of Albania scattered across the field

Hidden Bunker in Albania

Bunkers of Albania scattered across the field

Bunkers of Albania scattered across the field

So tell me, what do you think of the bunkers of Albania? Let me know in the comments section below!

PS1: Ieva from Therandomp has just made an interview with me about my travel habits and advice,  go ahead and check it out here!

PS2: I’ve just recently written an 8-day travel itinerary through Transylvania for One Week Adventures. Read all about it here, it’s perfect for first-timers in Romania! 🙂

11 Responses to “Bunkers of Albania

  • They look like giant ant hills. Maybe it’s a paranoid question but how’s the safety matter in Albania?

    • They do, haha!
      Well, we were only there for a day, and with a group, so I can’t really say. I did, however, witness much kindness from locals. And the beaches of Albania are to die for (Google it for a dose of vitamin sea!), so I’d happily return for a summer holiday 🙂

  • Julie & Drew
    1 year ago

    What a bizarre and unique feature. I’ve never heard this about Albania. Looking forward to checking them out myself at some point soon. Albania has been high on our travel list for next summer.

    • Thank you for your comment! I was astonished when I read how many of them dotted the Albanian landscape. They are truly bizarre, but also extremely interesting. I loved Berat and plan on returning for a summer beach holiday, because their beaches are exquisite and accommodation is really cheap. Don’t miss out on Berat if you go! 🙂

  • wow 700,000 bunkers!!!!! in pics i looks small, so its fine for that much of number. is it possible now days to use them for smth. ? in my opinion shelters for backpackers would be great 🙂

    • Thank you for your comment! 🙂 I read some were converted into cafes and homeless and animal shelters! 🙂 But it’s a great idea for backpackers too!

  • What was he so paranoid about that he felt the need to build so many bunkers? 😀

Trackbacks & Pings

  • Travels of 2015 | CityoftheWeek :

    […] Lake in Europe and the amazing city of Ohrid, checked out the city of a thousand eyes and the bunkers of Albania, went hiking in the Rila Mountains of Bulgaria and spent 2 days in […]

    1 year ago

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge

%d bloggers like this: