Classical Tour of Albania
The walls, Venetian fortress and Museum
path leads down to the Lake gate which is a typical Hellenic
gate giving access to the shore of Lake Butrint. The
wall here is C4th BC and constructed from massive stones
without the use of mortar. The plumb line cut into the
corner of the wall may either have acted as a drain for
rainwater or ensured the straight arrangement of the blocks.
The path runs along the outside of the wall to the Lion Gate.
This was originally a Hellenic gate like the Lake Gate but was altered in the middle ages when a tower was added. The name comes from the carving over the lintel of a lion attacking a bull. The bull is on the ground and only its head and horns are visible.
Outside the wall is the remains of a Roman necropolis.
The path now climbs steeply up to the C13th Venetian fortress, surrounded by a battlemented wall which was built at top of the site. This now became the main settlement and the rest of the site was gradually abandoned.
The fortress was rebuilt in the 1930s and is surrounded an attractive gardens.
There are good views of Lake Burtint, the vivari Channel and across the Vrima Plain to the Triangular fort.
There is a small museum of artefacts from the site in the basement of the Venetian fortress including pottery, glass, amphorae, household Roman gods, jewellery, and coins. Everything is labelled in Albanian and English. There are information panels covering the history of the area. The larger statues as well as part of a mosaic are displayed in the open passageway outside the museum.
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