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Are you looking for an affordable beach vacation destination? Look no further than Himare, Albania!
Located on the stunning Albanian Riviera, Himare is home to some of the most picturesque beaches in all of Albania. From secret coves hidden away from crowds to white sandy shores stretching as far as the eye can see, these amazing Himare beaches offer something for everyone!
During the month of May, we spent a week exploring the best beaches in Himare and were blown away by the natural beauty of this region. With the majestic mountains as a backdrop to the beautiful beaches and endless greenery, Himare truly is a hidden European gem.
Not only do the Albanian Riviera beaches rival that of Greece and Croatia, but it’s also extremely affordable to visit. We found that the cost of food and hotels is much more reasonable than other European Mediterranean destinations.
So what are you waiting for? Read on to discover the 13 best beaches in Himare, Albania, plus our top tips on visiting the region.
Map of Himare Beaches
Here is a map of the 13 best beaches in Himare to help you easily navigate your way around. Make sure to read our tips on how to get to the beaches because some can only be accessed by boat or by foot.
To use the map, click the box on upper right corner to download the map to Google Maps on your phone. To see a list of all the beaches, select the box on the left with the arrow.
13 Best Himare, Albania Beaches
In no particular order, here are the best beaches to visit in Himare, Albania. We’ve also included directions on how to get to the beaches because some are more difficult to access than others.
If you can, we highly suggesting renting a car in Albania. Many of these beaches do not have public transportation access, so it’s best if you rent a car to get the most of your trip to Himare. We rented our car in Albania through Discover Cars, our go-to rental car site, and had a fantastic experience.
1. Spile Beach
Spile Beach is one of the most popular beaches in Himare, Albania. It’s located in the center of the city and is the most accessible beach if you are staying in the city.
It’s one of the few sandy beaches in the area (most are pretty rocky), so it’s a great place to grab a towel and relax for the day. Since Himare is located in a bay, the water is calm and pretty shallow here.
The best perk of this beach is its proximity to fantastic restaurants. Behind it is a nice beach promenade with many Greek restaurants. Our favorite restaurant is To Steki sti Gonia, which serves Greek salads and gyros for a very reasonable price ($3 gyros!). We went here twice because we loved it so much!
If you’re looking to rent a kayak to go to Filikuri Bay, or just for fun, there are rentals on the beach. Kayak rentals in Albania usually cost around 1,000 Lek ($10) per hour. You’ll also find boat tour companies if you want to take a day trip to some of the beaches than can only be accessed by boat – like Grama Bay.
2. Livadhi Beach
Livadhi beach is located about 4km (2.5 miles) north of Himare city center. It’s a beautiful, long beach with white sand and stunning turquoise waters. The sand is a bit pebbly, so it’s best to bring sandals or water shoes for walking along the beach.
There are many restaurants serving Mediterranean cuisine and fish along the beach. You’ll also find plenty of bars and cafes as well if you’re looking to pick up a drink or a quick snack.
HOW TO GET TO LIVADHI BEACH: You can either walk or drive to Livadhi beach from Himare. If you’re walking, it’s about a 45-minute walk from Spile beach. Along the way, you can stop by Kico Meniko, which is a wonderful restaurant that overlooks the water. We recommend downloading the app Maps.me, which is an offline map app that shows the trail from Himare to Livadhi beach.
3. Gjiri i Akuariumit (Aquarium Beach)
Gjiri i Akuariumit is our favorite beach in Himare! This beautiful beach features white pebbly sand and crystal blue water. This secluded spot feels like an exclusive Mediterranean paradise.
Aquarium beach is only accessible by foot (or by 4×4) from Jale beach or Lavadhi beach.
We suggest bringing your own food, water, and beach towels because there aren’t any facilities or cafes on site. There is another beach just down the road, but it’s pretty rocky and is not as nice as Aquarium beach.
If you’re visiting during the high season (July to September), make sure to arrive early to get a prime spot. The beach is small and it can fill up fast.
HOW TO GET TO AQUARIUM BEACH: From Jale beach, the walk to Aquarium beach is only 20-minutes along a dirt road. Put in the directions in Google Maps and it will take you to the right place.
From Livadhi beach, the main road was closed, so we had to follow a small dirt trail to get there. This took us along the coast and the views were incredible the entire way. To get to the trail, walk up past Blue Bay restaurant and follow the dirt trail behind the restaurant. From here, follow the red and white striped markers on the trail until you get to the beach. It took us 30-minutes in total from Livadhi beach.
4. Gjipe Beach
Gjipe beach is one of the best beaches in Himare and is another one of our favorites! It is a wide beach located at the end of a canyon, so it never feels overcrowded and the scenery is absolutely stunning here.
You can only reach Gjipe beach by foot. The walk from the parking lot is about 25-30 minutes along a dirt trail. We suggest bringing walking shoes because the first part of the trail is very rocky and would be difficult to walk on with flip flops.
The water is a bit choppy here but still manageable if you’re an experienced swimmer. We suggest packing your own food, drinks, and towels, as there aren’t many amenities here.
If you want a camping experience on the beach, then you should check out Gjipe Eco Campground. The campground is located right behind the beach. We met a couple of guys who had spent a couple of nights here and said they loved it.
HOW TO GET TO GJIPE BEACH: You can access Gjipe beach by foot or by boat.
To get there by car, it’s about a 45-minute drive north of Himare. You’ll need to park in the parking lot and pay a small fee. We paid 300 lek ($3) for a full day of parking. We were visiting during the shoulder season, so the fee may cost more during the high season. Once you’ve parked, it’s about a 25-30 minute walk down to the beach.
To book a boat tour, check out the local company Himare Seas The Day for their private and group trips.
5. Jale Beach
Jale Beach is situated about 7km (4.3 miles) north of Himare. This beach is not as crowded as some of the others in the area, and the water is a stunning turquoise color and the beach is very clean.
There are a lot of beach bars here, which makes this a popular spot for young tourists. If you aren’t a fan of loud music, then this may not be the beach for you, as there is usually loud music playing at all of the bars.
You can rent an umbrella and a set of chairs for 1,000-1,500 Lek ($10-$15) for the day depending on the place you rent them. Otherwise, you can bring your own towel and access the beach for free.
HOW TO GET TO JALE BEACH: The best and quickest way to get to Jale beach is to drive. It takes about 20 minutes to get here from the center of Himare. There is parking available that costs 500 Lek ($5) for the day.
If you are visiting without a car, then for a full-day adventure, we suggest walking to Jale beach from Livadhi beach. The walk takes about an hour in total, and you can stop at Aquarium beach along the way. Just follow the same path to get to Aquarium beach and continue along the road until you reach Jale beach.
6. Borsh Beach
Borsh beach is the longest beach in the Albanian Riviera, stretching 7km long.
This hidden gem an underrated spot that features a pristine coastline with crystal clear waters and epic views. The water is calm and shallow making it an ideal swimming spot for families.
You can rent a couple of beach chairs and an umbrella for 500 lek ($5) for the day. Of course, you can also bring your own towel and enjoy the beach for free. Make sure to bring sandals or water shoes because there are a lot of small pebbles on the beach.
It’s pretty rugged and underdeveloped here, which adds to the charm, but there are still plenty of beach bars and restaurants where you can eat.
If you have time, we suggest stopping by Borsh Castle. It’s an ancient castle with ruins scattered around, and the panoramic views are incredible. Entry is free.
HOW TO GET TO BORSH BEACH: The best way to get to Borsch beach from Himare is by car. It’s located 19km south of Himare and takes around 30 minutes to drive there.
7. Dhermi Beach
Dhermi beach is a wonderful gem that is surrounded by beautiful mountains and the blue Ionian sea. It’s a slice of Albanian paradise and the breathtaking scenery is really what sets this beach apart.
The beach area feels like a small resort town with busy beach bars and restaurants. It’s quite a hot spot for the younger crowd, so expect a lot of loud music and noise. This unfortunately isn’t uncommon in Albania.
The sand is pebbly like many of the other Himare beaches, and the water is a stunning crystal blue color. You can rent beach chairs and umbrellas for the day for 1,000 – 2,000 Lek (depending on the beach bar you rent them from). You can also bring your own towel without having to pay.
Free parking isn’t easy to find here, so plan on paying 300-500 Lek ($3-5) for a parking spot for the day.
HOW TO GET TO DHERMI BEACH: The best way to get to Dhermi Beach from Himare is to drive. It’s located 18km (11 miles) north of Himare and takes about 30-minutes to get there by car.
8. Llamani Beach
Llamani beach is just a 10-minute drive south of Himare. This small beach is nestled in a little cove with beautiful scenery and turquoise waters. It’s a great place to spend an afternoon relaxing and swimming on the beach.
There is a cafe on the beach that serves drinks and snacks. You’ll also find restrooms and showers as well. Prices at the cafe can be a little expensive, so if you’re on a budget, we suggest packing your own lunch and drinks.
Sun bed rentals cost around 1,000 Lek ($10) for the day and parking is free if you rent sun beds.
How to get to Llamani beach: The only way to access this beach is by car. Technically, you can walk, but it takes an hour from Himare along a busy highway.
9. Grama Bay
Grama bay is the most unspoiled beach in the Albanian Riviera. This small bay is surrounded by tall mountains and features a white pebble beach with the clearest water you’ll ever see.
This gorgeous beach can only be accessed by boat, so it feels completely secluded and untouched. Make sure to pack food, drinks, and a towel on your boat tour, as this is usually not provided.
How to get to Grama Bay: The only way to access this beach is by boat. We suggest booking the 5-hour Grama Bay boat tour with Himara Seas The Day. You can either book a private tour or join a group tour to save some money.
10. Prinos Beach
Prinos beach is just a 10-minute walk from Spile beach in Himare. Considering this beach is located in the center of Himare, it’s quiet and is not overrun with tourists nor loud music.
What really sets this beach apart from the others is the calm waters. You won’t find many waves in the bay, which makes it a lovely spot for swimming and enjoying the water.
One of our favorite restaurants in Himare, Taverna Pirosia, is just a 5-minute walk up the road from this beach. We highly recommend stopping by here for lunch and sampling their salads and byreks (local pies).
HOW TO GET TO PRINOS BEACH: If you’re staying in the center of Himare, then it’s best to walk to Prinos beach. You can find parking nearby if you drive.
11. Potami Beach
Potami beach is another beach located in the center of Himare and is the best spot to go for a sunset swim or to simply enjoy the sunset. It’s about a 5-minute walk from Prinos beach.
With its stunning Ionian sea waters and views, this is a great spot to settle in for the day near Himare. There are plenty of delicious restaurants nearby, but we recommend checking out Soren, which is right behind Potami beach. We each got a seafood pasta dish and it was fantastic.
You can rent sun beds and umbrellas here, or you can bring your own towel.
HOW TO GET TO POTAMI BEACH: We suggest walking to this beach from Himare to avoid having issues finding parking. However, you should be able to find some parking along the street nearby if you drive.
12. Filikuri Bay
Filikuri Bay features a secluded beach that is located in between Potami beach and Llamani beach.
The beach is small and does not have any beach facilities, so it’s best to bring your own food, water, and beach equipment. The only way to access the beach is by kayak or by foot.
You can rent kayaks from Spile beach, the main beach in Himare, and they charge around 1,000 Lek ($10) per hour. It takes about 45-minutes to an hour to reach Filikuri Bay from Himare.
If you plan on walking to the beach, then you’ll follow the road up behind Potami beach until you reach a path. The climb down to the beach is pretty steep with only a rope to help you down a rocky ledge. Many people have said that it’s quite scary climbing down the rocks, so for your own safety, kayaking may be the better choice.
13. Porto Palermo Beach
Porto Palermo beach is a secret spot near Himare. It’s located just a 4-minute drive south of the Castle of Porto Palermo, which is a popular site to visit in the area. We suggest combining the beach and the castle as a day trip from Himare.
If you’re looking for tranquility and calm, then this is the beach for you. Not many tourists know about this beach, so it’s quiet and does not have any beach facilities. You don’t have to worry about loud music from any beach bar.
Make sure to bring your own food, water, towels, and/or beach chairs, as there aren’t any restaurants nearby.
How to get to Porto Palermo beach: The only way to get here is by car. It’s located about 10-km south of Himare and takes 15 minutes to drive here.
Quick Tips for Visiting the Himare Beaches
While it’s pretty straightforward visiting the Himare beaches, we learned a few things that we wish we would have known before visiting. Here are some of our tips to help you prepare beforehand.
- Bring cash – Most beaches charge a fee to park your car and to rent sun beds and umbrellas. While there are ATMs in Himare, there aren’t any at the smaller beaches. We suggest bringing enough cash to pay for parking, your car, and any food you may purchase. Parking is usually around 200-500 Lek, sun bed rentals are 1,000-2,000 Lek, and food can be anywhere from 500 Lek to 3,000 Lek for a meal.
- Rent a car for the most flexibility – Public transportation to the Himare beaches isn’t widespread. Most of these beaches can only be accessed if you have a car or pay for a boat tour. We highly recommend renting a car to make the most out of your time. We rented our car through Discover Cars for our month in Albania.
- Beach food is pricey – To save some money, pack your own lunch and drinks. The food at the beach is often much more expensive than restaurants in town and is not nearly as good.
- Expect loud music – Since the beaches are packed with beach bars, there is a lot of loud music playing at many of the beaches in Albania. We were pretty surprised by this and were also annoyed by this. Unfortunately, there is nothing you can do about it, so if you want to read or listen to your own music, bring your own headphones.
When is the best time to visit the Himare Beaches?
The best and most popular time to visit the Himare beaches is between late June and September. During these months, the climate is at its peak with warm temperatures and plenty of sunshine. With average temperatures between 87-95 degrees Fahrenheit (30-35 Celsius), its the perfect time of year for swimming and relaxing at the beach.
If you want to avoid the crowds, then we suggest that you visit during the shoulder season – late May to early June. The weather is usually warm enough to relax at the beach, and you will basically get the beach all to yourself.
The only downside about visiting outside of peak season is that some of the restaurants may not be open, and you could potentially experience rainy weather. We visited Himare in early May and a lot of the restaurants and beach bars were still closed.
To get the full experience, it’s best to visit during the summer.
How do you get to Himare, Albania?
The most convenient way to get to Himare is by car, but you can also get there by bus. We’re breaking down these two options below.
Renting A Car
Getting a car rental is by far the easiest and most convenient way to get around Albania. We rented a car at Tirana International Airport through Discover Cars for our month-long trip in Albania, and we wouldn’t have wanted to do it any other way. By having a car, we were able to visit many of the not-so-touristy places and could see things at our own pace.
If you’re arriving from Corfu to Albania, then you can also pick up a car rental near the Saranda port.
Taking the bus to Himare
The buses in Albania are a bit disorganized, but luckily there are a couple of direct routes to Himare from the main cities. To get an idea of the pricing and timetables, check out the Gjirafa Travel website that displays all the bus journeys in Albania. From what we hear, it’s pretty accurate.
Bus from Tirana to Himare: There are a couple of direct buses that go from Tirana to Himare. The bus ride takes around 4 hours and costs 1,000 Lek ($10). Check pricing and timetables here.
Bus from Saranda to Himare: There are several direct buses that go from Saranda to Himare per day. The ride takes 1.5 hours and costs around 600 Lek ($6). Check pricing and timetables here.
Where to stay in Himare?
In Himare, you can either stay in the city center where you can easily access the closest beaches and restaurants. Or you can opt to stay in the hills surrounding the city that offer panoramic views of the sea and a more relaxed experience.
We opted to stay in the city center this time, but next time, we’d prefer to stay up in the hills at a boutique hotel.
Here are a few of our suggestions:
Hostel: Himara Hostel – Located just an 8-minute walk from the beach, this hostel is highly rated for its cleanliness and amenities.
Boutique Hotel: ELÉA Guesthouse – A beautiful, family owned guesthouse with wonderful views overlooking the ocean and Himare. The food is exceptional and the rooms are clean. We got a private tour of the hotel from the family and enjoyed one of our best meals in the region here. Highly recommended!
Luxury Hotel: ARXONTIKO – Located just 100 meters from Spile beach, the main beach in Himare, this hotel offers rooms with beautiful sea views with breakfast included.
Himare Beaches Frequently Asked Questions
Where is the Albanian Riviera?
The Albanian Rivieria is a long stretch of coastline that spans from Vlore in the north all the way down to Ksamil in the south. This part of Albania features some of the most stunning natural beauty and beaches in the country, if not the Balkans.
Which is better Dhermi or Himare?
Whether you choose to visit Dhermi or Himare is up to what you like. Himare is a quieter town with fantastic restaurants, calm waters, and incredible beaches. It tends to be on the more family-friendly side. Dhermi is very charming and a bit more upscale, and Dhermi beach has more of a party vibe. Both are beautiful, but where you visit depends on what you want out of your trip.
Which part of Albania has the best beaches?
In our experience, the Albanian Riviera has the best beaches in Albania. Specifically, the beaches near Himare, Vlore, and Dhermi have more natural beauty compared to those down in Ksamil or Saranda.
CORFU, GREECE: Visiting Corfu during your trip to the Ionian sea? Here’s our guide on how to get to Ksamil from Corfu.
HIMARE, ALBANIA: Check out our guide on the Best Things to do in Himare
ALBANIA TRAVEL PLANNING GUIDE
Albania Travel Insurance – Should you get travel insurance for Albania? YES! We always get travel insurance before all of our trips for peace of mind. Check out Travel Insurance Master to find the best plan for you.
Albania Rental Cars – Is it safe to rent a car in Albania? Yes! We rented a car in Albania for one month and it is the best way to see the country. We rented our car through Discover Cars (our go-to rental agency), which helps you find the best rates no matter where you are traveling.
Albania Phone Plans – If your phone plan does not offer free coverage in Albania, then we suggest getting an eSIM. We used Airalo during our trip to Albania, and we had fantastic coverage the entire time. We even had to rely on it for data to get some work done, and it worked great!
Albania Hotels – Wondering where to book your accommodations for Albania? We booked all of our hotels through Booking. All of the hotels were responsive through the messaging tool, and there are endless options to choose from. Note – some hotels in Albania require you to pay in cash. Make sure to message the hotel in advance to be prepared with the correct form of payment.
Drinking Water in Albania – Wondering if you can drink the tap water in Albania? We were advised to not drink the water by our hotels, so we ended up buying bottled water instead.