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Gjirokastër Castle is a fortress in Gjirokastër, situated at a height of 336 metres.
The castle dominates the town and overlooks the strategically important route along the river valley. It is open to visitors and contains a military museum featuring captured artillery and memorabilia of the Communist resistance against German occupation, as well as a captured United States Air Force plane to commemorate the Communist regime's struggle against the "imperialist" western powers.

The citadel has existed in various forms since before the 12th century. Extensive renovations and a westward addition was added by Ali Pasha of Tepelene after 1812. The government of King Zog expanded the castle prison in 1932.

Today it possesses five towers and houses, the new Gjirokastër Museum, a clock tower, a church, a cistern, the stage of the National Folk Festival, and many other points of interest.

The castle's prison was used extensively by Zog's government and housed political prisoners during the Communist regime.

Gjirokastër National Folklore Festival is an artistic festival taking place every five years The festival was first held in 1968 and is regarded as the most important event in Albanian culture. The festival showcases Albanian traditional music, dress and dance from Albania, the diaspora, and Albanian inhabited lands throughout the Balkans and Southern Italy.

Yesterday I showed the American plane wreck. Here the stage of the Folk Festival. There were no singers and dancers in traditional dresses at the moment so the lone tourist instead.
Unfortunately, the tower of the castle is in scaffolding, wrrrr.
Bigger beta picture

View from the stage in the opposite direction.


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Additional Photos by Malgorzata Kopczynska (emka) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 11664 W: 123 N: 29633] (139480)
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