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Korçë - The Paris of Albania
The historical town of Korçë (pronounced Core-cha) has a well-preserved historical center with cobblestone streets and many surviving villas that were built in the early 20th century. From 1916 - 1920, the town was under French control and eventually it was declared an autonomous region with French support.
The continental influence resulted in the construction of neoclassical villas, two famous cinemas and a tradition of photography and art appreciation. Korçë was known at one point as the "Paris of Albania".
The town is also famous for its Orthodox churches, including the oldest surviving Orthodox church in Albania, the Church of St. Mary in the village of Mborja 1km away.
Korçë is home to many museums, including the National Museum of Medieval Art, the National Museum of Archaeology, the Albanian Museum of Education, the Bratko Museum or the Oriental Museum.
Korçë is also known as the city of festivals, with the Beer Fest being one of the best known events.