A conglomeration of Communist , Ottoman and Italian influences , the Albanian capital is always evolving . Tirana represents both the past and the future . Tirana has exploded into life since the fall of its brutal socialist regime in 1991 . Some of the best shops , cafes and restaurants have recently sprung up around Ish – Blloku , the block of streets surrounding Ismail Qemail .
The people were forbidden to enter the Blloku area during the communist era , but it was opened to the masses in 1991 and quickly became a landmark for all youth of the city .
The area is also home to many of Tirana ' s finest museums . At the National Archaeological Museum the visitors can walk through Albania's ancient history : Roman Statues , Illyrian manuscripts and mosaics from the Hellenics times .
Ish Blloku is the trendiest area of the capital but Skanderbeg Square is its heart.
At the top of Rr Elbasanit is the Martyrs' Cemetery, where some 900 partisans who died in WWII are buried. The views over the city and surrounding mountains are excellent, as is the sight of the immense and strangely androgynous Mother Albania statue (1972). Hoxha was buried here in 1985 but in 1992 he was exhumed and interred in an ordinary graveyard elsewhere
The Grand Park lying in the southern part of the city and extending over an area of 55 hectares with an artificial lake included. The Tirana Grand Park has a big variety of plants, you can find there about 120 kind of plants, decorative shrubs and flowers of various colours.
The National Museum of History is the country's largest museum and includes the following pavilions : Pavilion of Antiquity, Pavilion of the Middle Ages, Pavilion of Renaissance, Pavilion of Independence, Pavilion of Iconography, Pavilion of the National Liberation Antifascist War, Pavilion of Communist Terror, and Pavilion of Mother Teresa.
Skanderbeg Square is the main plaza of Tirana , at the time of the Albanian monarchy , a statue of Joseph Stalin was erected where today Skanderbeg's statue is located.
The Et'hem Bey mosque is located in the center of the Albanian capital Tirana. Construction was started in 1789 by Molla Bey and it was finished in 1823 by his son Ethem Pasha (Haxhi Ethem Bey), great-grandson of Sulejman Pasha. During the totalitarianism of the Socialist People’s Republic of Albania, the mosque was closed. In January 18, 1991, despite opposition from communist authorities, 10,000 people entered carrying flags. This was at the onset of the fall of communism in Albania. The frescoes of the mosque depict trees, waterfalls and bridges; still life paintings are a rarity in Islamic art.