One of the highlights of visiting southern Albania is dining at the many great restaurants in Saranda. Located on the Albanian Riviera, the coastal city of Saranda offers a huge variety of cuisine ranging from top quality fresh seafood to traditional Albanian, Mediterranean and much more.
During my 3 month stay in Saranda, I was very lucky to sample an abundance of Saranda restaurants and quickly found my favourites which I returned to time and time again.
I created this detailed guide on the best restaurants in Saranda so that you don’t miss any of the top gems! I’ve also included some of my favourite sunset bars where you can sip a cocktail or glass of wine while watching the sun set over the ocean.
So come with me as we take a journey through the sunny seaside city of Saranda and discover all of the best places to eat and drink. From the most popular beachfront restaurants to the hidden gems tucked away in the sloping hills, here is my ultimate list of the best restaurants in Saranda!
Table of Contents
26 Best Restaurants in Saranda – The Ultimate Guide on Where to Eat in Saranda, Albania
The Best Seafood Restaurants in Saranda
Taverna Fish Filipi
Cuisine: Seafood, Mediterranean, European, Albanian
Stop in here for an authentic meal of freshly caught seafood for very reasonable prices. This local gem is located a few streets away from the bustle of the promenade offering a less touristy dining experience.
Choose from a selection of fresh fish, prawns, octopus etc that you see on display and the staff will prepare it for you with the dish of your choice. Taverna Fish Filipi is open year round as it’s a popular restaurant for both locals and tourists.
Fish Restaurant Ladi
Cuisine: Seafood, Mediterranean, European, Albanian
This highly-rated seafood restaurant is in a central location right next to the Port of Saranda. It’s a small, family-owned restaurant that is known for serving top quality seafood dishes with a stunning view of the bay.
Some of their top dishes include seafood spaghetti, seafood risotto and grilled prawns. Be sure to sit on their outdoor patio for the best view. Fish Restaurant Ladi is a must for any seafood lover!
Cuisine: Seafood, Mediterranean, Albanian
Being one of the most popular restaurants on Saranda’s promenade, Centrali is always busy with people dining at any given time of day. Based on my experience, I would recommend this place if you’re looking to go for a nice dinner.
Their menu features a variety of seafood dishes, plenty of meat options and a great selection of pastas and risottos to choose from. Their desserts are also delicious.
What stood out for me while dining at Centrali was the excellent service, relaxed vibe and high quality of the food. The restaurant is only steps from the ocean so you can enjoy a peaceful sea breeze as you dine.
The Best Meat Restaurants in Saranda
Cuisine: Meat, Seafood, Mediterranean, European
Taverna Labëria is tucked away in the Kodrra neighbourhood, about 15 minutes by foot from the center of Saranda. This small, local gem offers some of the best grilled meat in town and is particularly known for its lamb dishes.
You can expect to have a great traditional meal here with a menu that features all kinds of seafood and meat dishes accompanied by soups and salads. The portions at Taverna Labëria are huge and the prices are surprisingly low for what you get.
The Nomad Burgers & Steaks
Cuisine: Burgers, Meat, Veggie options available
If you’re craving a juicy burger, look no further than the best place in town, The Nomad Burgers & Steaks. The prices are a little higher compared to other Saranda restaurants but you won’t be disappointed by the quality and flavours of the food.
This is the perfect spot to go if you want a break from seafood and Albanian cuisine. Keep in mind this is a pretty small restaurant and during busy times it’s not uncommon to wait a while to be seated.
Meat House Restaurant
Cuisine: Mediterranean, European, Fusion, Barbecue, Meat, Seafood
With a huge range of traditional meat and seafood dishes, the name of this place really captures the essence of it. Only steps from the beachfront promenade, you can dine with an impressive view at Meat House Restaurant.
From grilled seafood to lamb ribs, carbonara spaghetti and everything in between, there is something to suit every meat lover on their menu. There are several vegetarian options on the menu for those in your group who don’t eat meat.
The Best Traditional Saranda Restaurants
Cuisine: Seafood, Albanian, Mediterranean, Grill, Vegetarian options
With some of the highest ratings of all the restaurants in Saranda, Haxhi is a gem not to be missed during your holiday in Albania. This family-owned restaurant has a cozy ambiance, a fun eclectic décor and most importantly incredible food.
Serving traditional Albanian and Mediterranean dishes for a very reasonable price, you are sure to enjoy anything you choose from their varied menu. The friendly waiters are always working to keep their customers happy with appetizers, fresh fruits and raki shots on the house.
The seafood pasta and grilled fish are some of the most popular items on the menu at Haxhi however I really enjoyed the “Pink Pasta”, a great vegetarian option made with beets.
Kasandro’s Fast Food Traditional
Cuisine: Albanian, Fast food, Barbecue, Mediterranean, European, Greek
Despite its name, Kasandro’s Fast Food is actually more of a sit-down restaurant serving tasty Albanian and Greek cuisine with views of the sea. You can order all of the staples of a fast-food place such as souvlaki, kebabs, gyros and much more.
Kasandro’s became one of my go-to restaurants during my stay in Saranda, even though it was more than a 30 minute walk from my Airbnb, it was always worth the effort.
For great service, tasty food and even better prices it’s worth stopping in here for a relaxed lunch or dinner at least once. However after one visit, you’ll probably be back for more!
Cuisine: Seafood, European, Albanian, Mediterranean
Seeking some authentic Albanian cuisine right on the boulevard? Pop into Taverna Garden to try some of their delicious seafood and traditional dishes on the outdoor terrace by the sea.
This small family owned restaurant is the place to go if you’re looking for Albanian/Mediterranean cuisine, especially fresh seafood, at an affordable price.
Cuisine: Seafood, Mediterranean, European, Albanian, Vegetarian
Natyra is a popular restaurant in Saranda that’s located on the road leading up to Lekuresi Castle. It boasts an incredible panoramic view over the valley and mountains behind Saranda. The best way to get there is by car as it’s around 40 minutes by foot up a steep hill from the town center.
The restaurant’s menu features both Albanian and European cuisine with some of the highlights being seafood, grilled meat, ribs, pasta and more. If you’re vegetarian, don’t worry there are salads, soups and pastas available without meat!
This is the perfect place to stop in for a meal if you’re driving up or down from the castle. A great idea would be to watch the sunset at Lekuresi Castle and then have dinner at Natyra on your way down.
The Best Brunch Restaurants in Saranda
Cuisine: Albanian, Seafood, Mediterranean, European, Greek
Just steps from the main beach in Saranda, Marini offers a fantastic breakfast menu featuring all the classics such as eggs benedict, omelettes, pancakes, waffles and more. Known as being one of the top brunch spots in town, the food at Marini is just as good for lunch and dinner.
The portions sizes are all very generous no matter what you order. I spent many afternoons there working on my laptop with a huge quinoa salad and a green smoothie, it’s a great place to grab a healthy meal. Marini is also known for its fresh local seafood, meat dishes and pastas/risottos.
The owners of Marini are so friendly and you can really feel the love that goes into everything they do. Be warned, this place gets extremely busy during peak season so you might want to book ahead!
Cuisine: Polish, Albanian, European, Café
A family owned and operated café located up the hill on 5th street, about 15 minutes by foot from the promenade. This is the perfect brunch spot where you can get a good coffee (almond and soy milk offered here!) and a delicious meal to start your day.
I came here several times during my stay and had a great experience each time. The muesli with yogurt is topped with plenty of fresh fruits and the scrambled eggs come with fresh bread and tasty home-made dips (hummus, tzatziki, salsa).
Don’t let the steep walk put you off, the food at Lulu Café is worth the effort it takes to get there. There are plenty of apartments and hotels nearby so if you are staying in the neighbourhood, don’t miss it!
The Best Restaurants on Saranda’s Beachfront Promenade
Cuisine: Italian, Seafood, Mediterranean, Vegetarian options
If you’re wondering where to eat on Saranda’s beachfront promenade, Limani is a favourite among locals and tourists. Located right on the water, you can dine with a stunning view of Saranda’s harbour.
The service at Limani was always quick and the food was excellent every time I ate there. With big portions, a gorgeous view and friendly staff, the value for money at Limani is hard to beat. I personally loved the pizzas as they are big, delicious and a perfect size to share.
Cuisine: Mediterranean, French, Italian, Seafood, Meat, Vegetarian & Vegan options
Arches Brasserie is one of the top restaurants on Saranda’s promenade serving high quality food with a decent selection of wine. Good wine can be hard to come across in Albania if you don’t know where to look, but luckily it can be found right here.
You can expect all the typical Mediterranean style foods at Arches such as seafood, meat, pasta, salad etc. It is not easy to find vegan or vegetarian food in Albania but Arches has several clearly marked meat-free options on their menu. They also have a nice selection of breakfast dishes available.
Cuisine: Albanian, Seafood, Mediterranean, Healthy, Bar, European
LemonTree is a nice restaurant attached to the Ilyrian Boutique Hotel that serves Albanian and Mediterranean inspired cuisine. Located just off the main boulevard, LemonTree offers a cozy dining atmosphere with both indoor and outdoor seating.
The staff is friendly and attentive while the food is always delicious, fresh, and served in generous portions. LemonTree is a great place to go for lunch and dinner, they have a fantastic selection of pastas to try. With a special breakfast menu, it’s also an awesome place to start your day.
The Best Sunset Bars in Saranda
Jericho Cocktail Bar
Menu: Cocktails, beer, coffee, juices, smoothies
If you’re in the mood for cocktails by the sea at happy hour, Jericho Cocktail Bar is the place to be. Located right on the promenade overlooking Saranda’s main beach, you can enjoy a drink with a perfect view of the ocean at sunset.
Choose from a huge menu of standard and signature cocktails and be sure to go during happy hour (2-8pm daily) for a 15% discount. For overall vibe, quality of drinks and reasonable prices, I would say this is definitely the best cocktail bar in Saranda.
Wine Bar Kristiano
Menu: Cheese platter, antipasti, snacks, good wine
Tucked away in the hills of Saranda, this hidden gem is not to be missed. For an unbeatable view over the entire city and the Greek island of Corfu, Kristiano’s Wine Bar is the place to go for a sunset drink.
I went there several times during my stay and each time, I was surprised at how few people were there. It’s one of the few spots in Saranda that is still relatively unknown. With better wine and a nicer ambiance, this is a great alternative to visiting Lekursi Castle’s restaurant at sunset.
The quality of the wine here is amazing for the price and the views during sunset will absolutely take your breath away. Don’t forget to order an antipasti platter to accompany your wine!
Keep in mind that this place can be quite hard to find and by following Google maps, you might be sent on a wild goose chase along a steep dirt road. I have mapped out the best route to get there via Google maps and yes, it still involves a bit of dirt road driving but this is the most efficient way, I promise.
View Bar Terrace
Menu: Wine, cocktails, beer, coffee
If you’re looking for a bar with a laidback vibe and an epic view, head up to the View Bar Terrace which is located on 5th street, about a 15 minute walk from the promenade.
This is definitely less busy than Jericho’s but not as tricky to find as Kristiano’s. I really enjoyed the atmosphere here with cozy couches, a nice selection of drinks and good service. Be sure to ask the staff to be seated on the top terrace and thank me later!
This is a great choice if you want something to please everyone with a menu that features cocktails, wine and beer. Not in the mood for drinking? You can also enjoy a morning coffee with a spectacular view at View Bar Terrace!
Menu: Wine, cocktails, beer, coffee
Tipsy Drinks is another great spot to enjoy a sunset cocktail or two on Saranada’s promenade. Located on a rooftop terrace, you can take in the scenery and soak up the peaceful ambiance with a cocktail in hand, a nice way to unwind after sightseeing on a day trip from Saranda.
The menu at Tipsy Drinks includes several sushi options which is perfect if you’re in the mood for a light snack to accompany your happy hour drinks. Awesome vibes, great cocktails, chill music and a beautiful view, what more could you ask for the perfect evening in Saranda?
The Best Restaurants for Digital Nomads in Saranda
Polonia Coffee House
Cuisine: Polish, European, cafe, breakfast, brunch, scrambled eggs, crepes, desserts
This was one of my favourite restaurants in Saranda for working online as a digital nomad. The owner of Polonia Coffee House is so friendly and happy to accommodate those who work on laptops. Even if you’re not planning to work, this is yet another lovely brunch restaurant in Saranda.
I came here regularly for coffee and breakfast because it was close to my apartment, the food is great with big portions and there is even a beautiful view to top it all off! I found it to be a very inspiring place to get some work done during the morning.
If you’re staying in the town center of Saranda, keep in mind that you’ll have to walk up the hill to get there. The opening hours of Polonia are 8am – 2pm daily.
Cuisine: Pizza, Albanian, Italian, Mediterranean, European, Vegetarian
Located quite close to Polonia Coffee House, Casa Nostra also offers an outstanding view over Saranda and Corfu. This is a fantastic restaurant to go for lunch or dinner. The staff are friendly and don’t mind if you spend a day there with your laptop.
Pizza and pasta is popular choice on their menu but they serve a variety of cuisine from traditional Albanian to Italian, Mediterranean and much more. I really enjoyed eating and working here during my time in Saranda.
Casa Nostra offers great value for money, an incredible view, and they also accept card payments here which is a bonus. Be sure to get a table near the window!
The Best Vegan/Vegetarian Restaurant in Saranda
Green Life Market
Cuisine: Plant-based, Vegan, Mediterranean, European
Tucked away at the back of town on 5th street, this little gem is a must-try for any vegan or vegetarian visiting Saranda. Being the only proper vegan restaurant in Albania, it is worth walking up the steep hill for!
During my stay in Saranda, my apartment was next door to this restaurant so I ended up eating here regularly and becoming good friends with the owners. If you do drop in, please say hi to Monica and Julian for me!
The food at Green Life is all home-made by the owners using organic local produce and house-grown herbs. The vibe is cozy, welcoming and I found it to be a great spot to meet other travellers. Even if you’re not vegan or vegetarian, it’s the perfect place to enjoy a healthy meal and hang out.
They also serve tasty beers on tap from a microbrewery in Tirana as well as local Albanian wines. Keep in mind that Green Life is only run by the two owners, husband and wife team of Monica and Julian. It can get very busy during peak season and they simply cannot accommodate large numbers.
For that reason you should definitely send them a message on Instagram to make a reservation beforehand. Be sure to check out their current hours of operation as they change throughout the year depending on the season.
The Best Beach Bar in Saranda
Menu: Cocktails, wine, beer, seafood, pasta, appetizers
Lost Seaside is one of the top beach clubs in Saranda where you can lounge by the sea with a cocktail in hand as chilled house music plays in the background. With great service, delicious food, outstanding views, and fair prices, the vibe at Lost is truly unbeatable.
If you’re planning to celebrate a special event or just seeking a fun place to spend a day enjoying the sun, sea and good food then you’ll definitely want to check out Lost.
Be sure to book ahead during the summer and keep in mind that it completely closes over the fall/winter months. To get there, it’s a 15 minute walk or a 5 minute taxi ride from the town center of Saranda.
The Best Fast Food Places in Saranda
Cuisine: Fast food, gyros, pitas, souvlaki, Mediterranean, Albanian, Vegetarian options
This is the best fast food place in town if you’re looking for a cheap but tasty meal on the go. I came here regularly to grab a pita and had a great experience each time. After trying several other fast food places in Saranda, this one definitely stands out.
Bulla’s Corner is one street back from the promenade and features all the Albanian fast food staples like grilled meats, Arabic pitas, gyros, souvlaki, kebabs, fries and more. Service was always super quick, friendly and their prices are very reasonable!
Fast Food Nasto
Cuisine: Fast food, Greek, Albanian, pizza, burgers, pitas
Located right on the beachfront promenade, Fast Food Nasto is known as one of the most popular fast food restaurants in Saranda for a reason. At Fast Food Nasto you can be guaranteed to get generous portions for a fair price.
This is a go-to restaurant for travellers and locals alike. Its prime location, good food, friendly service and even better prices will keep you coming back again.
The Best Dessert Place in Saranda
Cuisine: Gelato, cakes, traditional desserts, waffles, crêpes, coffee
If you are ever in the mood for a dessert or a sweet treat while in Saranda, this is the place to go. I tried a lot of ice cream shops in town but I have to say, nothing beats Sweesh. For 100 lek per scoop, you can’t go wrong!
You’ll find plenty of other desserts at Sweesh from local Albanian pastries to Nutella crêpes and so much more. It’s in a perfect location near the promenade so you can easily pop in when you’re out for an evening stroll.
Important Things to Know for Dining in Saranda
Cash Only – It’s important to note that Saranda and Albania as a whole is a cash-focused country. Be sure to withdraw some cash at an ATM and take it with you to any restaurant you dine at as most of them don’t accept card payments.
There are definitely exceptions to this but as long as you carry cash with you at all times, you won’t run into any issues. The ATMs in Saranda are known to charge a hefty fee, I often went to Union Bank in the town center which charged me 400 lek to withdraw cash.
Tipping in Albania – Albania is similar to most European countries when it comes to tipping, it’s not compulsory but it is greatly appreciated by servers in all Saranda restaurants.
As a rule of thumb, Albanian wages are quite low and Saranda is a seasonal destination seeing most of its visitors during the summer months. A lot of restaurants close their doors completely during the quiet period.
So if you feel that your server did a great job, don’t hesitate to leave a 10 – 15% tip but do make sure you have some cash on hand to do so. While it is not expected, a small tip goes a long way in Albania and you’re sure to make someone’s day!
Seasonal – Saranda is a seasonal city meaning that the summer months tend to look drastically different to the winter months. If you are an expat or digital nomad planning a long-term stay in Saranda, you will notice that many businesses close their doors over the fall/winter months.
If there is a particular restaurant in Saranda that you can’t wait to try out, make sure to go during the summer so that you don’t miss out! Don’t be surprised if there aren’t nearly as many options available outside of the months of June – August.
I spent September, October and November in Saranda and toward the end of my stay, there were only a handful of restaurants on this list still open at that time.
Where to Stay in Saranda, Albania
Here are some of my top picks when it comes to accommodations in Saranda. You can also check out my detailed post on the best hotels in Saranda to find the perfect hotel to suit your needs.
City Center Guest House – Located in the heart of Saranda, this little guest house offers a comfy place to retreat after a full day of exploring. The rooms are basic but they have all the essentials you need for a great stay in Saranda including a fridge, private bathroom, free Wi-Fi and a great central location!
Hotel Mano – This cute oceanfront hotel has everything you could wish for the perfect beach holiday. Hotel Mano offers stunning ocean views from the rooms, a great location near the Port of Saranda, and a delicious breakfast included in your stay, all for a very reasonable price!
Andon Lapa Hotel & Spa – If you’re seeking some luxury, don’t miss this amazing beachfront hotel with a beautiful outdoor pool and direct beach access. With a spa, gym and great breakfast included, you can relax in style at the Andon Lapa Hotel.
The Best Travel Insurance for Albania
Do you have your travel insurance yet? You’ll definitely need it for your trip to Albania.
The last thing you want is to have an unexpected medical emergency occur while you’re in a different country with no insurance to cover the costs!
Even if you don’t end up using it, getting travel insurance is a small investment to make for peace of mind. This allows you to focus on having a memorable, relaxing vacation instead of worrying about what could go wrong.
I always go with Heymondo. They’re one of the most reliable companies that will provide you with simple and flexible coverage. Whether you’d like to protect against medical emergencies, lost luggage, or trip cancellations, Heymondo has you covered!
As a reader of The Road Is Life, you get 5% off your Heymondo travel insurance by using the link below!
Read More Albania Travel Guides
- The Best Hotels in Saranda
- 12 Incredible Day Trips from Saranda
- The Best Beaches in Saranda, Albania
- The Best Hotels in Ksamil, Albania
- The Ultimate One Week Albania Road Trip Itinerary
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