Shengjin Beach (Albania)
Shëngjin is in Lezhe.Shengjin is a growing beach town located in Northwest Albania well known for its Adriatic coastline and tourist accommodations. Shengjin is quickly becoming one of the must see locations in Albania for day trippers or those looking for a relaxing getaway by the coast.
Shëngjin is the northernmost port of entry to Albania. Shëngjin (Albanian pronunciation: [ʃənˈɟin]; Albanian for St. John, Italian: San Giovanni di Medua) is a coastal town in the Lezha District, northwestern Albania. Located at 41°49′N 19°35′E, Shëngjin has a population of approximately 7,000 citizens in winter time. It is a growing destination site, well known for its beaches and resort accommodations, and in summer time the population increases to 70,000. Many of these holiday visitors are from Kosovo. Shëngjin is one of many cities within the District of Lezhë and is home to one of Albania’s entry ports, Port of Shëngjin. The port has currently no facilities for visiting yachts, which usually lie alongside one of the many fishing boats that use the port.
The port has about 40 fishing ships, but only about 10 are still active, due to economic factors ( e.g. high cost of diesel, competition from large ships from other parts able to reach not-yet-fished-out areas). The nearest ( 7 km away ) town is Lezhë (Albanian: Lezha or Lezhë, Albanian pronunciation: [ˈlɛʒə]; Italian: Alessio, Greek: Λισσός, Lissòs), a city in northwest Albania, in the district and county with the same name. It is located at 41.79°N 19.65°E and has a population of about 27,500 (2009 est). In ancient history it was an ancient Greek colony named Lissus. The latter is an Archaeological Park of Albania. Shkoder, 40 Km away, has a population of 300,000. Rozafa castle can be seen from far away; the town has a university and several churches and mosques.
It is located 8 km far away from the town of Lezha .Shengjin is well known for its high quality of sand beaches . In this place there are 200 to 300 days with the sun during the year. Only 2,5 km north of Shen Gjin in the foot of the hills there is the famous beach “ of Powdered sand “ ( Rana e Hedhun) This quite beach is well protected from the winds . In Shen Gjin there are plenty of tourist facilities for visitors , including hotels, bars restaurant, playground for kids, resorts etc.
It is highly frequented with the tourist coming from Kosovo, northern part of Albania and foreign travellers. Sunbathing, swimming, sailing and fishing are the main activities.
Shengjin’s district, Lezhe, has thousands of years of history that has provided this beach city with a unique Mediterranean culture. Home to some of the most historic and heroic moments in Albania’s history, the Lezhe district has become well known for its history as much as its sandy coastline. The people of Shengjin, like the rest of the people of Albania, are known for their hospitality.
By Bus: In the summer months it is possible to take a bus between Shengjin and neighboring city Lezhe. Buses routes between Shengjin and Lezhe costs 30 Lek and take approximately 15 minutes to ride. The location for bus drop-offs and pick-ups are throughout the city of Shengjin and Lezhe.
By Taxi/Furgon: Furgons (or minivan taxis) run year around from Shengjin to neighboring city Lezhe. Furgon rides between Shengjin and Lezhe costs 50 Lek and take approximately 10-15 minutes. The locations for furgons drop-offs and pick-ups are throughout the city of Shengjin and Lezhe. Furgons are the most common form of transportation in the area and are easy to locate as they drive through the city from morning till night.
By Boat: The ferry connection with Brindisi was re-instated in June 2015 running twice a week by European Seaways during the summer. Ferry departs from Brindisi at 23:00 and arrives in Shengjin at 07:00. It departs from Shengjin at noon (12:00) and arrives in Brindisi at 20:00.
Most visitors get around Shengjin by walking along the make road or along the coastline. However, it is possible to take a bus, taxi, or furgon throughout the city. Just be aware that most of these means of transportation often lead out of town to the neighboring city, Lezhe. If you wish to travel within the city, make it clear to the driver where you want to go, or else you may be taken out of town on the more typical transportation routes.
- Beaches-Shengjin’s coastline offers a great beach experience with great views to the Adriatic Sea.
- Rana e Hedhun– This is a undeveloped stretch of coastline just north of the city well known for its sand dunes and seascape near the mountain ridge.
- Kune & Vain (Laguna)– Located just south of the city, this area is well known for its natural beauty and wildlife.
- Mountains– The surrounding mountain ridge provides great views to the sea as well as the city
Shengjin offers a wide arrange of outdoor activities including:
Common souvenirs in the Shengjin area include the popular drink raki, handcrafted goods, beach accessories and paintings by local artists. Souvenirs can be found in the shopping district in Shengjin on the main road in the middle of the city. The local currency is Lek, but some establishments also accept the Euro.
Shëngjin’s restaurants are best known for offering the freshest seafood in the region. Tourists greatly enjoy the local seafood dishes caught by the local fisherman. Shengjin also offers Albanian and Italian-influenced cuisine in its restaurants. Some of Shengjin’s most popular restaurants include;
- Trendafili Mistik-located by Kune & Vain (Laguna), this restaurant is popular with the locals because of their seafood and duck dishes.
- Drtari– located in the center of the city, this restaurant offers fresh seafood caught by the owners boat.
- Rapsodia– known for its Italian and European dishes, Rapsodia is one of the most frequented restaurants in the area. Rapsodia is located on the main road that links Shengjin to the neighboring city Lezhe.
- Complex Kristi– located on Rana e Hedhun, this cafe and restaurant has some of the best views in the region. The restaurant also offers some of the best fresh seafood in town.
Like other Albanian towns, Shengjin’s drink of choice is “raki”, which is produced from local grapes. Visitors also enjoy drinking wine produced in northern Albania that is sold at many of the cafes and restaurants across town.
In the past 5-10 years, many resort style hotels have been built along the beachfront. Some of Shengjin’s top hotels include Hotel President, Hotel Ermiri Palace, Hotel Antag, and Hotel Ragealo. The accommodations are spread out from the southern to the northern parts of the city, and they also range in price. The hotels fill up with guests during the summer months when thousands pour in to visit the Adriatic coast.
You can buy a local sim card for 600 Lek (Vodafone). You need to provide ID (passport) and give an address in Albania. Many local cafes and hotels offer free wi-fi service to their customers.
Shengjin is located 7km from Lezhe, 10 km from Lac, 28 km from Shkoder, 55 km from Durres, 58 km from Tirana, and 60 km from the Tirana International “Mother Teresa” Airport. All of these locations can be accessed by bus, minivan taxi (furgon), or taxi. Visitors to the area have found that transportation is fairly easy to navigate in this area.