On 29 July 2022, after a long process, a new marine protected area was proclaimed in Albania, the Porto Palermo Natural Park. The Porto Palermo Natural Park is located in the southern part of Albania and has a surface of 1694.98 ha, respectively 1490.40 ha marine area and 204.58 ha terrestrial area. The Bay of Palermo, known since ancient times as Panorama Bay, is the most typical and most beautiful Bay of the entire Ionian coast.
The protected area of Porto Palermo has great natural and biological diversity and is created to preserve the essential functions of ecosystems, habitats and marine and coastal species. The marine biodiversity includes a rich variety of habitats and species such as the Posidonia oceanica, which forms huge meadows of shallow and middle depth, Lithophyllum byssoides located in the northern part of the bay, associations with Cystoseira amentacea, biocenosis of mediolittoral caves, coralligenous biocenosis etc.
In a small rocky cape in the shape of a Peninsula, which divides the Porto Palermo Bay into two parts, is located the Castle of Ali Pasha Tepelena, an important element of Albanian history and a major tourist destination visited by thousands of tourists each year.
With the proclamation of Porto Palermo as a new marine protected area, 12 years after the proclamation of the first MPA, that of Karaburun-Sazan, Albania makes a step forward in terms of nature conservation and protection and in terms of achieving national and international goals on the percentage of territory protected.