Butrint was an ancient Greek town and is now one of the most significant archaeological sites of Albania. It is protected under the UNESCO as a World Heritage site and is one of the major tourist attractions of Albania. Butrint was established on the Ksamil Peninsula, and is 15 km South of Sarande, near the Greek border. The archaeological site is a part of the Butrint National Park.
Butrint has a very rich history as it has been inhabited throughout the ages, by the Romans, Greeks, Venetians, Norman, Byzantines and the Ottomans. The town, therefore, has remnants of each era, adding to the significance of the site, with its Mediterranean history of almost 3,000 years.
One of the best attractions of Butrint is the 3rd century Amphitheatre. This theatre had a capacity to hold an audience of 1,500 and had stone bank seating, out of which 23 seating rows have been preserved. The theatre is located at the base of the Acropolis and closed by two temples. One of the temples is dedicated to the Greek god of medicine, Asclepios, who was the local deity.
The Baptistery, built in 6th century A.D. is one of the finest monuments in Butrint. It was rebuilt many times and functioned as a church till as late as the 18th century. The circular building is decorated beautifully with mosaics and carved columns. The Basilica is another monument, which should be visited. Guarded by two towers, the Basilica has 3 aisles, measuring 20.15 to 18.33 m.
The Archaeological Museum of Butrint is located in the Venetian castle, resting on the acropolis. The museum houses items from Antiquity to Middle Ages and all the artifacts are very well displayed and labeled, in both English and Albanian. Along with these structures, Butrint also has some ancient fountains, a mosaic decorated gymnasium, public baths, aqueduct built by Augustus, a Byzantine structure, etc.