Apollonia archeological park

All roads lead to Albania: What you need to know before traveling to Albania

All roads lead to Albania: What you need to know before traveling to Albania

From its stunning beaches and Mediterranean climate to its rich history and culture, there is something for everyone in Albania. Why all roads lead to Albania? More than 2000 years ago, the Romans built great roads to connect with Rome. Via Appia which was Rome’s first road, linked both sides of the Adriatic Sea through Via Egnatia. Starting in Dyrrahium (modern-day Durres, Albania), Via Egnatia stretched through valleys and mountains in the southern Balkan to end in Constantinople (now Istanbul). Traveling in Albania connects you with the ancient history of the Illyrians, Greeks and Romans. Moreover, you will follow the footsteps of Julius Caesar on the eastern part of the Adriatic Sea.

Today tourism in Albania is turning into a very important industry. Considering it a unique experience, many famous travel magazines like New York Times, Conde Nast Traveller, etc recommend it as a travel destination for 2023. Travelers choose Albania because it’s out of an ordinary destination. Within a small area, one can experience a diversity of activities. 

In this article, we’ll take a look at the best things to do in Albania, the best time to visit, how to get around, where to stay, and whether is it safe to travel in Albania.

Apollonia archeological park
Apollonia archeological site, a key town along Via Egnatia

The best things to do in Albania

Visit the Albanian Riviera: The Albanian Riviera is one of the most beautiful and popular tourist destinations in the country. With its charming beaches and Mediterranean climate, it’s no wonder why. Dhermi Beach is one of the most popular beaches on the Riviera and is perfect for soaking up the sun. Qeparo’s old town standing on the edge of rocky hills is in symphony with southern Italy. And hiking in Llogara National Park will offer the best panoramic views of the Ionian Sea and its islands. Whereas, Gjipe beach makes you feel in a remote and tropical paradise. Down south facing Corfu Island, Ksamil has the best sandy beaches in Albania.

Explore the archeological sites: Albania has a number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, including the Butrint archaeological site, and the medieval city of Gjirokaster and Berat. The ancient city of Apollonia was a key town along the Via Egnatia, where famous Roman people like Julius Caesar and Augustus hang around. Bylis, Amantia, and Oriku created a koinon (political community) along the Vjosa river. History buffs can enjoy traveling between 10-12 days around Albania to adore archeological remains.

Ksamil beach and Corfu Island on the horizon

Hiking in the mountains: Albania has one of the highest average altitudes in Europe, approximately 700 meters above sea level. Options to hike are numerous, from the Albanian Alps to the Sharr mountains in the north, to Tomorr and Nemercka in the south. Most of the trails are open and clean from snow from June until November. 

Spend a weekend in Tirana: The Albanian capital is one of the growing capitals in the Western Balkans in terms of population and economy. It offers a buzzy nightlife, impressive museums, and many outdoor activities.

Go for birdwatching: In Albania are annually observed over 315 bird species, many of them nesting here. Along the coastline, you can go to see water birds such as flamingos, pelicans, or herons in the lagoons of Karavasta, Narta, and Kune-Vain. Additionally, Drinos and Vjosa valley are frequented by different raptors.

A Little Egret resting in Karavasta Lagoon

The best time to visit Albania

The best time to visit Albania is between March and October when the weather is warm and sunny. However, the country’s charming coastline and Mediterranean climate make it a popular destination for visitors all year round. Spring and autumn seasons are best for exploring city life, while July and August are good to spend relaxing on the beach. The most popular winter destination is the city of Korce. It offers a cozy Christmas atmosphere, delicious cuisine, and ski slopes in the village of Dardhe.

How to get around Albania

There are several ways to get around Albania, each with its advantages and disadvantages. The best way to see the country is by car, as this gives you the most flexibility in terms of where you go and what you see. Alternatively, you can take the bus between big cities. Besides being slow, you may not be able to get to all of the places you want to go.

Practical information for visitors to Albania includes knowing that most people speak Albanian, although English is also widely spoken. The country uses the Albanian Lek as its currency, and visitors need to have cash when traveling around the country. Paying by card is not that common in Albania.

Guesthouse in Shkoder
Tradita in Shkoder

Where to stay in Albania

When it comes to finding accommodation in Albania, there are a few different options to choose from. The capital, Tirana, is a good place to start your search for hotels and hostels. There are also many apartments for rent in Tirana if you’re looking for something more long-term. Guesthouses (Albanian: Bujtinat) are another option for accommodation and are typically family-run businesses that provide a more traditional Albanian experience. Recently, the Albanian government is supporting local farmers to invest in their land, and spending time with these friendly people is an exceptional event.

Is it safe to travel in Albania

Albania is open for travel from all countries, and most domestic restrictions have been lifted. To illustrate, Albania is ranked 41 on the 2022 Global Peace Index. Considering safety categories such as physical harm, theft, daytime/nighttime safety, or women’s safety, tourists in Albania are pretty safe. In general, there is a welcoming atmosphere for foreigners. Regarding health and medical, it’s advised to tourists to bring international travel insurance. Public hospitals have increased their service, and many private hospitals offer good assistance. In terms of terrorism, there has never been any attack in Albania.


No matter where you decide to stay in Albania, you’re sure to have a memorable experience. The locals are friendly and welcoming, making Albania the perfect place to relax and enjoy a vacation. And with so much to see and do, you’ll never be bored in this lovely country.

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Hiking in Grebaje valley, overlooking the Accursed Mountains in Montenegro

Top 10 places to visit in Montenegro – off the beaten path

Top 10 places to visit in Montenegro - off the beaten path

Hidden bays on the shores of the Adriatic Sea, mountains with dense forests, and blue rivers are some of the top places to visit in Montenegro. Slightly larger than Connecticut (USA), Montenegro has 294 km long shorelines. Thanks to its enormous land formation, Montenegro holds the largest canyon in Europe, that of the Tara river.

Tourism in Montenegro is rising for travelers who love to go off the beaten path. Although the tours in Montenegro can be short in length, the diversity of natural beauties is epic. During the summer, the coast is busy with tourists, yet one can find unique things to do in Montenegro when driving further inside the country. Transportation in Montenegro is heavily dependent on buses, which sometimes take extra time to get you to your favorite destination. Therefore traveling by car is the best advice to explore hidden gems.

When considering visiting Montenegro, many immediately think about the beach and sun. Kotor and Budva are the most popular tourist destinations in Montenegro. But if you like to be outdoors and discover the local culture and tradition, you should travel to these must-see places.

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Black lake, Durmitor
Black lake in Durmitor national park


Zabljak is a village in northern Montenegro in the middle of Durmitor national park. The area has tens of glacial lakes, and the famous Black Lake is only 2 km away from the center of the village. As an alpine village, Zabljak has lots of days with snow and is a good destination for skiing. Savin Kuk ski center has a slope of 3,500 meters long, with a ski lift and two chairlifts. Hiking here is thriving, and various levels of trails are accessible to people. Bobotov Kuk is the symbol and the highest summit of the national park. Another thing to do in Zabljak is mountain cycling.

Biogradska Gora

Biogradska national park is in the northeast of Montenegro, within Kolasin municipality. The forest reserve surrounding the Biograd river is one of the only in Europe. To point out the unique species of plants, fungi, and mammals co-living in this ecosystem. As a result of these rare phenomena, Biogradska NP is listed under the UNESCO World Heritage of ancient and primeval beech forests. Things to do are hiking to Bjelasica massif, walking around Lake Biograd, cycling, or skiing at the resort town of Kolasin.

Durdevica Tara bridge
Durdevica bridge on Tara canyon

Tara river canyon

Tara river canyon is the largest in Europe and second in the world, only after Grand Canyon in the USA. With a deep up to 1,300 meters and 140 km in length, Tara river is a unique place for outdoor enthusiasts. One can explore the canyon by rafting in the clear waters. While it may be an extreme sport during winter, summer is the best time to enjoy it at a calm pace. Rafting activities start near Durdevica Tara bridge. This landmark of Montenegro was built during the Yugoslavia era and is a must-see. Next to the bridge, you can also jump on a zip line over Tara river. Another place to spot the beauties of Tara river is the Vidikovac viewpoint near the village of Zabljak.

Piva canyon

Piva river flows in northern Montenegro and offers the best scenic drive in the country. Covering a distance of 35 km long, you will see high bridges, deep canyons, and emerald lakes. The town of Pluzine located near the dam presents the best of Lake Piva. Near the town, you can hop on a boat ride around the lake. Continuing driving north, you will pass through Orthodox monasteries and tunnels and reach the border of Bosnia & Hercegovina.

Boat riding in Crmnica river in Virpazar


Virpazar is a tiny pearl on the shores of Skadar Lake. Skadar Lake or Liqeni i Shkodres is the largest in the Balkans, shared between Montenegro and Albania. Travelers choose it as a day trip to get away from the hot days and relax in the pristine nature. A boat ride into Crmnica river and Skadar lake is highly recommended to admire the water lilies. Also, Virpazar is a great place for tasting local food and wine.

Karuc, Montenegro
Karuc village


Karuc is another little hidden gem of Montenegro. Camouflaged in dense forest, this village floats gently in the waters of Skadar Lake. Karuc resides in the northern part of the lake, next to Pavlova Strana viewpoint. Tourism in Karuc is focused on family-stay houses, where you can eat delicious fresh fish. Hop on a boat for a slow ride, and bring a pair of binoculars for birdwatching. Over 280 species of birds live in the paradise of Skadar Lake.


Plav is an alpine town resting at the foot of the Accursed Mountains. It’s about 2 hours away from Podgorica, and you can also drive through the border crossing Cijevna – Grabon. Besides Montenegrins, Plav is inhabited by Albanian ethnicities. The town is a popular hiking destination, part of the Peaks of Balkan. Additionally, trails starting from Plav town lead you to the wild peaks of the Accursed Mountains. Many hikers challenge themselves by hiking to the highest summit in Montenegro Zla Kolata, or Tre Kufinjte summit (three borders of Albania, Kosovo, and Montenegro). Moreover, you can go swimming or fishing in Lake Plav or Lake Hrid.

Hiking in Grebaje valley, overlooking the Accursed Mountains in Montenegro
Grebaje valley facing the Accursed Mountains

Grebaje valley

Grebaje valley is in southern Montenegro, on the foot of the Accursed Mountains. This mountain range is also known as Bjeshket e Namuna (Albanian), Prokletije (Montenegrin), or the Albanian Alps. Grebaje village is one of the best natural places to visit in Montenegro because it is the starting point to the Karanfili massif and Vajusha (Taljanka) summit. Looking down from the valley these untamed mountains look extremely beautiful. Often travelers choose to hike to Vajusha peak as it’s easier and more accessible through the summer months. Vajusha peak is on the Montenegrin – Albanian border and offers the best views of the Accursed Mountains. Karanfili massif is a challenging hike and is recommended to hike it with a local guide.

Stari Bar

Stari Bar (Old Bar) is a fortress in the town of Bar, the largest port of Montenegro. During the past 1,000 years, the old town changed administration between the Byzantine, Serbian, Venetian, and Ottoman empires. The last built a 3-km long stone aqueduct. It was destroyed by an earthquake in 1979, but it has been renovated. Balanced against high mountains and olive groves, Stari Bar offers panoramic views of the Adriatic Sea.

Buljarica beach
Buljarica beach

Buljarica beach

Buljarica is one of the best beaches in Montenegro, also an off-the-beaten-path destination. Composing an area of a 2 km long rocky beach, Buljarica is more of a public beach where one can relax and be away from noisy places. Additionally, there are places where you can rent beach beds. A cool thing to do is take the hiking trail to Luchica beach. Perhaps you can rent a bike and cycle the concrete path that stretches through the forests. Here you can enjoy the best panorama of the Adriatic Sea in Montenegro.

Lin village

Top 10 places to visit in Albania – off the beaten path

Top 10 places to visit in Albania - off the beaten path

Are you planning to visit Albania and you like to explore hidden gems?! Albania is a small country to visit, yet it is filled with many unique places to see. Covered by mountains from north to south, you will find many things to do in Albania. Besides the natural beauty of Albania, you will see different traditions and lifestyles on these hidden destinations in Albania.

If you are a traveler that wants to go off the beaten path, you will find these destinations attractive and exceptional. Many of you can easily reach these villages in Albania, but to enjoy the best you might need to hike a little. Remember to travel slowly in Albania and experience first-hand with locals.

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Voskopoje is a village 15km away from the city of Korce. It stands between mountains and wild forests. Voskopoje used to be a cultural center during the Ottoman Empire. Communities of Albanian, Greeks, and Vlachs were co-living peacefully here until the 19th century. Today, Voskopoje has a different vibe from the rest of Albania and is considered “Paris of the Balkans”. Many of the old ancestors have returned and have opened new guesthouses. Travelers decide to visit Voskopoje because of the many Orthodox churches. You can hike to St. John the Baptist’s Monastery and nearby Shipske village, in a beautiful trail matching up churches and pine forests. Others visit Voskopoje to enjoy the local food and chilly weather.

Lin village
Lin village by the Lake Ohrid


Lin is a tiny village by Lake Ohrid and is an ancient settlement of humanity. A peninsula covered by archeological sites and crystal emerald waters. Most locals are fishermen that go out in the lake to catch Koran (an endemic trout fish of Lake Ohrid). The socialists built many bunkers here, and used them to patrol the lake. You can take a short hike around the peninsula to adore the natural beauties and history.


The town of Permet is on the bank of river Vjosa and at the foot of Mount Nemercka. A quiet city with friendly people and beautiful valleys bursting with roses. Generally, Permet is famous for the Bektashi community, a Sufi Islam sect widely practiced in Albania. Independent travelers choose to visit Permet for the purpose of connecting with nature. Traditional Guesthouse Permet and Ferma Albanik are run by friendly locals who love nature. Try to spend an overnight here to support the local community and get closer to Mother Earth. Additionally, you can drive the Fir of Hotova national park in a 4×4 car.


Nivica is in the center of Laberia province, alongside high mountains. Uniquely the region has a medieval water aqueduct, high waterfalls of Peshtura, and deep canyons of Nivice. Equally important is the historical fact that the people of Laberia played a significant role in the independence of Albania. You can easily reach Nivica from SH4 road, just at the entrance of the city of Tepelene. Camp Nivica and Camping Lekdushi – Shehu are two sustainable accommodations where one can fully embrace nature.

Flamingos in Narta Lagoon
Flamingos in Narta Lagoon

Narta Lagoon

Narta is the second-largest lagoon in Albania on the shores of the Adriatic Sea. A part of the lagoon is a salt marsh, which creates perfect conditions for birds to rest here. It is an incredible place for birdwatching of flamingos, dalmatian pelicans, or little terns. Surprisingly on the west are sand dunes that separate the sea from the lagoon. They have a height of 5-6 meters and offer beautiful views of Sazan Island. In addition, on the south is Zvernec village and its small island, where is the Monastery of Saint Mary. It’s open to the public all year round. Remember to bring a pair of binoculars when visiting Narta Lagoon.


Generally, the east of Albania is remote due to the high mountains. Peshkopi is one of the few small towns settled in this part of the country. It’s next to the border with North Macedonia, and you reach it from Tirana following the Road of Arberi. The town is famous for its thermal waters. Following this, Albanians visit hotels with Sulphur baths to cure rheumatism issues. Mountain tourism is increasing in Peshkopi as you can hike various trails in Korab – Koritnik nature park.

Trail of colors, Shishtavec
Trail of Colors in Shishtavec. Photo by Ermal Hallaci


Shishtavec is a village in the northeast of Albania and is the center of the Gorani people. As a result, locals speak the Albanian language and Goranski dialect. Obviously, it’s a multicultural place and appealing to ethnographers. The mountain pastures in this region are famous for the diversity of flora. Consider going hiking during summertime when trails are full of colors. You will be walking right on the border between Albania and Kosovo.


Lepushe is on the north edge of Albania, on the foot of the Albanian Alps. It’s less known than Theth or Valbone, yet the valley has many things to offer. During winter the area has a high snow density and is great for skiing. In summer travelers visit the valley to hike Vajusha peak. Additionally, hikers can reach several peaks such as Berizhdoli or Grebeni. The asphalted road to Lepushe has some of the most panoramic views in Albania. 10 km from the village is the border with Montenegro, which takes you to the rest of the Prokletije Alps.

Lepushe, Albania
The trail to Vajusha peak from Lepushe village


Qeparo is a seaside village in Albanian Riviera. By comparison, it’s less frequented than other villages like Dhermi or Jali. Qeparo is more frequented by families and is quite peaceful to enjoy the beach. Besides the bay, Qeparo has an upper old village. It offers amazing views of the Ionian Sea and olive grove hills. Locals of Qeparo produce some of the best olive oil in Albania. Seek to spend a night in the upper town to catch beautiful sunrises and sunsets.

Sotira Waterfalls

Sotira waterfall is a tourist attraction on the foot of Mount Tomorr. You reach it by driving from the city of Gramsh. Then it takes approximately 1-hour hiking from the village of Sotire. The water flowing from Mount Tomorr creates some waterfalls of 20-100 meters in height. Remember to be careful when reaching the waterfall as the terrain is slippery.

Sotira waterfalls
Sotira waterfalls

I am a national tourist guide in Albania, and I get to travel a lot around the country, so I can guarantee you that these destinations have a different feeling. To avoid the big crows during high tourist season, head to these villages, and you won’t be disappointed. Overall, one can spend 10 days on average traveling around Albania.

Prizren old town

Recommendations to Visit Kosovo

Recommendations to Visit Kosovo

Kosovo is the youngest country in Europe and a new place to visit for enthusiastic travelers. Being a small country between different ethnicities, it unifies history and tradition. Many of you probably have heard about its country recognition process and past difficult times. Kosovo is a destination that offers history tours, in addition to incredible nature, kind people, adventure travel, and affordable tourism. Thanks to its geographical position, Kosovo has a natural beauty and is easy to travel around. In this blog, I will list my recommendations on how-to absolutely enjoy Kosovo.

Get out in the nature of Kosovo

Kosovo is a relative mountain country with an average altitude of 810m (2660ft). In the southeast is the mountain range of Sharr, and in the west is Bjeshket e Namuna, or The Accursed Mountains. Overall these mountains have a lot of peaks over 2500m, with Gjeravica peak standing at 2656m as the highest peak in Kosovo. Meanwhile, Dukagjin and Kosovo Polje create the lower plain of Kosovo.

Peja monastery in Kosovo
Views of Rugova Canyon from Peja monastery

Things to do in the Sharr mountains

Kosovo is a sensational place for hiking. Sharr mountains have several hiking trails, varying in different categories. Particularly Sharr mountains are famous for their diversity of vegetation. Prevalla is a village in the Sharr mountains, where many hiking routes start. From Prevalla you can hike to Jazhincë Lake, an 18 km long trail that takes about a 6-7 hour walk. Bring your swimsuit in summer to refresh in the cold water.

Ljuboten peak (2498m) is another challenging hike in the Sharr national park, between the borders of Kosovo and North Macedonia. It is a long hike, but very beautiful because you can see all the plain of Kosovo.

High Scardus Trail is a long hiking route in this area. In fact, the trail starts in Kosovo, passes through the mountains of Albania & North Macedonia, and ends in Lake Ohrid. High Scardus is the most off-the-beaten track you can experience in Europe.

Brezovica, Prevalla, and Brod are three ski resorts where you can have fun in winter. Brezovica is the largest ski resort in Kosovo with nine ski runs from 300m to 3500m. Indeed, it is the most popular winter destination in Kosovo.

Prevalla is 28km from the city of Prizren, lying at 1800m above sea level. Although it has a beginner ski resort, there are many good hotels.

Brod is the southernmost village in Kosovo. The hamlet of Brod rests by mountains and has a high snow density. Arxhena mountain resort has four lifts and is a cozy place for accommodation.

Hike the Accursed Mountains

The legends behind these mountains are tremendous and are a paradise for nature lovers. Accursed Mountains national park includes Gjeravica (2656m), the highest peak in Kosovo. You can reach it from the nearby town of Decan. Via Ferrata Decan is another place to visit in this area. The climbing route is 400 meters and needs about 2.5 hours to climb. From the top, you get to enjoy great views of the Decani gorge.

Rugova canyon has a length of 25km and starts nearby the town of Peje. Following the road from the Peja Monastery, continue driving along the Lumbardhi river to reach the border with Montenegro. Along the way, one can be amazed by waterfalls, springs, canyons, and green nature. The village of Boge has a small ski resort and several great hotels. Furthermore, Rugova canyon is part of the Peaks of Balkans hiking trail, that crosses through three countries; Kosovo, Albania, and Montenegro.

Mirusha waterfalls

Mirusha park is in central Kosovo and has 12 waterfalls and 16 lakes. This nature reserve is a popular destination in Kosovo during summer and winter when the water freezes. Above all Mirusha is a vast place for hiking and swimming.

White Drin waterfall

The source of the White Drin river is 10 km away from Peje, and it is perfect for a day trip. At the village of Radac, White Drin creates a waterfall 30 meters high. It takes only a 10min walk from Trofta e Drinit restaurant, which is a great spot to enjoy fresh trout fish. Another 5min walk from the waterfall is The Sleeping Beauty cave. The cave has a metal rail and enough lights to admire the stalactites and stalagmites. Must be remembered that the cave is open during the summer period.

Gadima cave

The Marble Cave is in the village of Gadime. You can easily reach it by driving from Prishtina. The cave is 1300 meters deep and is rich in crystals, stalactites, and stalagmites.

Learn about religious sites in Kosovo

Kosovo is mainly a Muslim country, but the Serbian minority is of the Eastern Orthodox religion. As a result, Kosovo has four UNESCO sites, all being Serbian Orthodox monasteries.

Decani Monastery is a medieval monument from the 14th century built by king Stefan Decanski. The church has a grand collection of icons and frescos. It is an active monastery for priests and is open to curious tourists. NATO peacekeepers guard the site, so you need to show an ID at the entrance. Remember to dress appropriately when visiting the site.

The Patriarchate of Peja monastery is a group of four domed churches. It dates back to the 13th century and used to be the residence of Serbian Archbishops. Today the site serves as a monastery for nuns. In addition, you can get an audio guide for 5 Euros to learn more about the history. Also, on this site are NATO peacekeepers, so you must show an ID at the entrance.

Gracanica monastery was built during the 14th century by king Stefan Milutin. The paintings of Gracanica rank amongst the best Byzantine art in the country. The monastery is still active, and priests can help you guide inside. Remember to dress appropriately when visiting the site.

Cathedral Mother of God of Ljevis is the fourth site part of UNESCO. The monument is in the city of Prizren and is permanently closed. If you are patient and lucky enough, you can ask the police at the entrance, who might help you reach out to the priest in charge.

Monastery of the Holy Archangels is 5km from Prizren and is a complex founded by Emperor Stefan Dusan. Indeed, it was the burial church of the Emperor. Eventually, the monastery is an important Orthodox site related to the medieval Serbian empire. If you can’t visit inside Mother of God of Ljevis in Prizren, this would be an exciting replacement. Also, NATO peacekeepers guard the site, so you need to show an ID at the entrance.

Besides Serbian monasteries, there are beautiful and impressive Ottoman mosques in Kosovo.

Sinan Pasha mosque is the largest mosque and a characteristic landmark of Prizren. It was built in 1615 with carved stones from the Lumbardhi river passing by. The mosque has painted murals from the 19th century in the Ottoman baroque style. Tourists can visit all day, besides praying times. 

Hadumi mosque dates back to 1596 and is in the old town of Gjakovo. The prayer hall has unique Arabesque murals and creates a peaceful atmosphere.

The Great Mosque of Prishtina built-in 1461 is the oldest in the city. It is in the old bazaar of Prishtina. The mosque is dedicated to Sultan Mehmet Fatih II. Given that it is next to the Great Hammam and Sahat tower, it makes an Oriental impression within Prishtina.

NEWBORN monument in Prishtina
NEWBORN monument in Prishtina

Cities to go in Kosovo (Prishtina, Prizren, Peja, Gjakovo)

The main cities in Kosovo are pretty small, and one day is enough to visit the important tourist attractions. Depending on your itinerary in Kosovo, you don’t need to spend an overnight in all of them.

Prishtina is the biggest city in Kosovo. The capital was hugely affected by Kosovo War, and some monuments remain in the center city. Visiting Prishtina on a walking tour takes between 3-4 hours. If you can drive around Prishtina, try visiting the Bear Sanctuary and Sultan Murat shrine. For a pleasant walk or cycling in nature, get to Germia Park on the outskirts of Kosovo.

Prizren is the historical capital of Kosovo. During the Ottoman period, the city had the administration of Kosovo vilayet. For that reason, the city has a classic oriental old town. Prizren was the center of the Albanian Renaissance during the 19th century. The Albanian League museum is a fine place to learn about history. Take a walk up at Prizren fortress for amazing views of the city. Prizren stands at the foot of Sharr mountains, so it is a pleasant city to spend an overnight for more outdoor activities.

Gjakovo is a small town in the western part of Kosovo. It has the largest Old Bazaar in Kosovo including many handcrafted shops. Some things to do in Gjakovo are visiting Hadumi Mosque in Old Bazaar or enjoying a meal at Hani i Haracise restaurant. It is an old han from the Ottoman period converted into a pleasant restaurant.

Peja is the gateway to Bjeshket e Namuna national park. The town has a cozy vibe resting by the mountains. It is a popular destination for outdoor sports. Around the town are many cycling and hiking tracks. Stay at Shtepia Alpike Ranch or Hotel Camp Karagaq to have easy access to the beautiful nature of Rugova Canyon.

Together with a travel guide, you can visit Kosovo in the best way. Add some flavor by combining it with the nearby countries of Albania and North Macedonia. Albania & Kosovo in 9 Days and Albania, Kosovo, North Macedonia in 1 Week are two tours where you can explore the most popular attractions of the Balkans.

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Cycling in Tirana

13 Things To Do in Tirana

13 Things to do in Tirana

Tirana is a growing capital that offers many things to do for travelers like you. It blends in a nutshell history, tradition, and nature. Tirana has the largest airport in Albania that acts as the starting point of tours around the country. The city is famous for its active lifestyle and modern approach. Tirana has a population of approximately 1 million and is the center of attention in Albania. Indeed, there used to be a proverb in Albania during the communist days: All the country works hard for Tirana. You can easily spend 3 days alternating many choices of places to go.

  1. Take a walking tour of the main boulevard
  2. Discover Albanian history in the National History Museum 
  3. Learn about communism through BunkArt 1 & 2, and House of Leaves
  4.  Get on a cable car to Mount Dajt
  5. Drive to Bovilla Lake
  6. Hike to Pellumbas cave
  7. Enjoy sunny days by the Grand Park of Tirana
  8.  Eat local food
  9. Experience Tirana nightlife
  10. Cycle in Tirana
  11. Hike to Shengjergj waterfall
  12. Watch a football match at Air Albania Stadium
  13. See local Art & Culture
Main boulevard in Tirana
Main boulevard in Tirana

1. Take a walking tour of the main boulevard

The main boulevard of Tirana “Deshmoret e Kombit” includes the most important government buildings of Albania. The history dates back to the 1930s when Italian architects built the capital. You can spot the Italian architecture at the ministry buildings, the Prime Minister’s office, or the University of Tirana at Mother Theresa square. Take a slow walk, and you will find many more impressive landmarks like the Pyramid of Tirana.

National History Museum
National History Museum in Skanderbeg square

2. Discover Albanian history in the National History Museum

The Skanderbeg square features the center of the capital. The history of Tirana starts here with its sights from different eras as Et’hem Bey mosque and the Clock Tower. These symbolic buildings are the only remaining from the Ottoman period. In the center of the square is the monument of Albanian national hero Skanderbeg. If you want to learn closely about Albanian history, is highly suggested the National History Museum. The building was inaugurated in 1981 and covers vivid facts from antiquity to the last century.

BunkArt 1
The office of Interior Minister in BunkArt 2

3. Learn about communism through BunkArt 1 & 2, and House of Leaves

Albania experienced communism from 1945-1991. The history of the most isolated country in Europe during the 20th century is displayed well at the museums of BunkArt and House of Leaves. BunkArt 1 is the largest underground bunker in Albania with 130 rooms that can take up to 1.5 hours to visit. It is at the foot of Mount Dajt, and you can reach it by a city bus departing behind the National Opera. BunkArt 2 is the former Cold War bunker of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and sets between the City Hall and the ministry. House of Leaves formerly was the headquarters of the Albanian secret service “Sigurimi”.

Views of Tirana from upper station of Dajti Express

4. Get on a cable car to Mount Dajt

Dajti Express is the longest cable car in the Balkans. It takes you to beautiful nature, where locals love to relax on their days off. The views of Tirana from the top are amazing. Additionally, you can find many activities like Adventure Park (open during summer) or hiking to the top of Tujani peak. It takes about 3 hours to reach the top in an easy trail. You can hike with a guide and visit BunkArt 1 here: Rural Tirana – Hike mount Dajt and Bunkart

Bovilla Lake
Bovilla Lake

5. Drive to Bovilla Lake

Bovilla Lake has the best landscapes in Tirana. It is 20km from the capital, and you can drive or cycle there. This area has some beautiful views of mountains and canyons. Next to the dam are many climbing routes. You can take a short hike up to a viewpoint and enjoy a picnic. For more details, check out: 13 Best Hiking in Albania

Hiking in Pellumbas
Trail to Pellumbas Cave over Erzeni river

6. Hike to Pellumbas cave

Pellumbas cave is a tourist attraction in Tirana for people who like nature. From the village of Pellumbas, you hike about 2km to reach the entrance. The cave is one of the biggest in Albania and is full of stalactites and stalagmites. Bring a flashlight because there isn’t enough light inside.

Artificial Lake

7. Enjoy sunny days by the Grand Park of Tirana

Albania has around 300 sunny days a year, and Tirana is known to be a warm city. If you are in Tirana during hot summer days, you can go to chill at the Grand Park. The area has an artificial lake, a bike and run circuit, and many cafes. It is the most popular place to go for locals. Families with kids can have fun at various outdoor playgrounds inside the park.

Jufka with chicken

8. Eat local food

Albanian cuisine is a blend of Turkish and Italian influences. In the capital, you can find hundreds of restaurants to try local food. Areas like the “Pazari i Ri” and “Kalaja e Tiranes” are known for traditional food. Blloku has many modern restaurants with Italian influence as Spaghetti Western, Salt Rest, Ejona, Artigiano, and King’s House. Alongside the road to Mount Dajt are some fantastic restaurants too.

Tirana nightlife
Tirana nightlife

9. Experience Tirana nightlife

The nightlife in Tirana is busy during the whole week. The locals here love to go out. Blloku is the most popular for young people. There are many bars where you can enjoy a cocktail as Tribeca, Radio, Checkpoint Charlie, or Whisky. Rruga Mustafa Matohiti is another area with cool lounge bars such as Meduza, City Art, and Sense Resto. If you like to dance, you can go to Tunel, Arte, or The Underground.

Cycling in Tirana
A group of cyclists in Tirana boulevard

10. Cycle in Tirana

Tirana has many renovated bike lines that have increased the number of cyclists. You can easily take a bike tour around the ring of Tirana, all through a bike line. Remember to be careful because pedestrians walk carelessly in the bike line. If you feel fit and like farther tours, you can go to the hills of the artificial lake or Mount Dajt. Additionally, there are some mountain bike trails for adventurer spirits. For road bikers, the Krraba pass is a beautiful challenge. Road bikers can also choose to cycle to the village of Baldushk or Petrele.

Hiking to Shengjergj waterfall
Hiking to Shengjergj waterfall

11. Hike to Shengjergj waterfall

Shengjergj valley is 30 km from Tirana, behind Mount Dajt. It is a remote village that has many hiking trails. The valley is a place of interest for locals during winter because everything turns white from the snow. Easy hiking trails are Shengjergj waterfall or “Liqeni i Lepurit” (Rabbit lake). More demanding hikes are Mali me Gropa or Maja e Fagut. It is advisable to have a guide for the latest. If you are an off-road enthusiast, drive towards the Bize-Martanesh reserve for splendid nature. The gravel road starts just at the end of Shengjergj village.

Air Albania Stadium
Air Albania Stadium during a match

12. Watch a football match at Air Albania Stadium

The new football stadium in Tirana is unique in Europe. It has a tower attached to it which serves as Marriot Hotel. The stadium has a capacity of 22.000 seats, which makes it the largest in Albania. Besides Albania’s national team, local clubs like FK Partizani and KF Tirana use it for Superliga matches. Football is the most popular game in Albania, and the derby match between Partizani and Tirana is an experience. Check out the schedule at fshf.org and see if there is a match during your stay in Tirana.

Event at Art University of Tirana
Event at Art University of Tirana

13. See local Art & Culture

Tirana has hundreds of cultural activities all year round. The best way to learn about them is to download the free application Tirana Ime 2.0. Everything happening in Tirana is listed here. Try to see some Art exhibitions at the National Art Gallery, National Museum, or at the house of painter Sali Shijaku.

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13 Best Hiking in Albania

13 Best Hiking in Albania

Albania is a paradise for hikers of all levels. Hiking in Albania is an entirely unique experience because you meet super friendly locals, enjoy traditional food, and get introduced to unknown cultures. The mountains in Albania consist of Dinaric Alp, Sar mountains, Pindus mountains, and Ceraunian mountains. The flora of Albania’s nature is rich thanks to the typical Mediterranean climate. From the Albanian Alps down to south Albania, the legends of mountains are exceptional.

Albania’s hiking trails are slightly different from the Western world. They are marked and maintained in the last years but you need to know that the Albanian Alps are pretty wild and harsh. It is highly recommended to hire a private guide while hiking in the Albanian Alps so that you embrace all the beauty of nature and do not miss a thing.

If you prefer to explore the mountains alone, ensure to prepare in advance. Consider assembling all the required equipment for safe and sound walking in Albania. Prior to departure search online about the trail, you plan to hike and download an offline map. Pack good hiking shoes as most of the trails are rocky. Take insulated water bottles and water purification tablets. Also, make a list of local contacts in case of emergency. And most important reduce plastic waste and protect the environment.

  1. Theth – Valbone

This is perhaps the most famous route in the country. The trail is 16km long and reaches the highest altitude in Valbone ridge at 1800m asl (above sea level). It is open from June – the end of November (depending on the snowfalls). During the winter and spring, the trail is closed due to heavy snow and it becomes dangerous at some point. Even on the warm days of May, the trail has snow and it is not recommended to do it without a local guide. During winter you need to follow the winter trail, which is not well-marked and requires the knowledge of the locals. Along both valleys, the trail stretches through dense beech and pine tree. There are two bars open during summer, where you can enjoy a drink with a view. Level: Moderate

2. Peak of Balkans

The 192km trail extends through Albania, Kosovo, and Montenegro in the Dinaric Alps. A journey that takes you to some of the most rural villages in these three countries. The Accursed Mountains are wrapped with enormous legends about warriors, kanun, and “zana e maleve” (an Albanian mythological figure associated with mountains). Only in the last 15 years, has the region been accessible to tourists which boosts more the level of adventure. Level: Difficult. For more details about the trail, check out Peak of Balkans

3. Korab mountain

Korab peak is the highest in Albania and North Macedonia standing at 2764m asl. It is located on the border between these two countries and you can reach it from both sides. Korab is the fourth highest peak in the Balkans. The trail in Albania starts from the village of Radomire, and first passes through a pine forest. Then it ascends on a green meadow. The last part is rocky all the way to the summit. It is well-marked in summer (May – November) and in winter is covered with lots of snow. Additionally, it is a great place for ski lovers to slide as the terrain is of easy steepness. Level: Moderate

4. High Scardus Trail

A new trail is built and marked lately which extends along Sar Mountains in Albania, Kosovo, and North Macedonia. The total length is 495km passing between borders of three countries. Whether you can choose to walk the whole trail or divide it into different parts. The region is quite rich in endemic flora and fauna to mention Balkan Lynx, Sar shepherd’s dog, and endemic Macedonian pines. The trail is full of meadows with flowers and glacial lakes. Level: Difficult For more details about the trail, check out High Scardus Trail

Bovilla Lake

5. Gamti peak

This is a beautiful hike nearby the capital Tirana. The peak stands at 1256m asl and it offers amazing views above Lake Bovilla, Mali me Gropa, and Dajti mountain. The trail starts near the lake in the village of Ranze. At first, the route follows through dense bushes and continues up to the rocky part. It is not well marked but it is visible if you have some hiking experience. The views at the top are worth having a picnic. Level: Moderate

6. Mali me gropa

The mountain with holes (that’s the real name) has a rare karstic formation making it a unique hiking experience in Albania. The hiking trail starts from the village of Shen Meri (St. Mary), only a 1-hour drive from Tirana. The first part stretches through an old dirt route, the trail has no signs so you will need to have an offline map or better a local guide. Taking several stops for photos and snacks at the top is worthwhile. Level: Easy

7. Mali i Thate

The summit of “Dry Mountain” is approachable following the trail that starts in the village of Alarup in southeast Albania. The route is easy to stick to when having an offline map. It is located between Lake Ohrid and Lake Prespa, where at the top you can admire both of them. There are no trees or water sources on the way, so it is recommended to bring enough water with you. Bear in mind that due to its location, the weather is quite unpredictable and it changes often. Hence strong winds are common on cloudy days. The summit stands at 2288m asl and takes around 7-8 both ways. Level: Easy

8. Tomorr mountain

Tomorr is the most well-known mountain in south Albania and the locals have been hiking around it for centuries. There are two peaks on this mountain, Cuka e Partizanit (2416m) and Baba Tomorri (2400m). Thetrail to “Cuka e Partizanit” starts at “Cezma e Tarikos” south of Berat. The hiking level is moderate and takes around 4-5 hours up to the summit. Baba Tomorri is part of the Bektashism religion and on the top is the shrine of Abbas Ali. This peak is reachable by driving a 4×4 car from Polican and Corovode. From 19-21 of August, there is a big pilgrimage celebration and it’s quite busy with locals.

9. Gramos mountain

“Cuka e Pecit” peak in the Pindus mountain range between Albania and Greece, stands as the highest peak (2520m). It is situated in a remote habited area, covered by green pastures and the main source of four different rivers. The trail starts from the village of Starje in Erseke and lasts for 7 km to the summit. It is a visible track through easy steep hills which takes 3.5-4 hours one way. Level: Moderate

10. Cika peak

In southwest Albania, around Llogara national park you can find many hiking trails. The highest are Qorra (2018) and Cika peak (2044m) on Ceraunian mountain. The trail starts in Llogara pass near Hotel Panorama and continues through a dense pine forest. To reach Qorra peak takes 4km one way and it is of an easy level during the summer period. The trail to Cika peak is 8.6km one way and is considered difficult. It is a rocky terrain and the weather can be quite unpredictable. It is an ultra-prominent track from Qorra to Cika peak, so consider taking a local guide with you. Level: Difficult

Vjosa National Park

11. Nemercka 

It is located in South Albania and shares the valleys of Vjosa river and Drinos river. The highest peak is “Maja e Papingut” (2485m), which you can reach from both sides. From Vjosa valley it’s quite difficult to climb and you must have great physical conditions and a local guide. For more information, check out: Nemercka from Vjosa valley On the other side of Drinos valley, the route to the summit starts from the village of Skore, near Polican. The trail is approximately 13km long in both ways. For little experienced hikers, it’s recommended to do it during summer or autumn. The trail is covered with snow during winter until late May and requires mountaineering equipment. This is one of the ultra-prominent mountains in Albania, which means that you will gain an elevation of over 1500m. Thus think of oversleeping at the village of the starting point, or camping overnight.

12. Guri i Kamjes

This geological rock stands at 1461 meters above sea level and is created by land erosion and winds. The locals describe it as a large boat sailing in the sea. It is located in the southeast of Albania, between Pogradec and Korce. From Qafe Plloce, turn in the direction of the village of Prenisht. You will need an offroad car as it’s a gravel route. The hiking trail is 4.5 km long and it is easy. It is accessible all year long, even though during winters there is some snow. Please don’t hike up to the rock in order to sustain nature. Level: Easy. Check out this tour: Explore Southeast Albania

13. Vajusha Peak

It is located in the very north of Albania, right on the border with Montenegro. You can hike to the summit (2050m asl) from the village of Lepushe in Albania. In Montenegro, it is known as Taljanka peak and starts from Grebaj. The trail on the Albanian side is an easy level. It takes around 5 hours to do the whole trail of 10km. The track stretches through a beech forest and mostly in meadows. The route is well marked and you can also find water sources on the way.

Top 22 Best Beaches in Albania

Top 22 Best Beaches in Albania

Summer is behind the corner and you are thinking about the next vacation adventure. You are thinking to explore new destinations after a crazy lockdown without traveling. Where can you find the best beaches in Albania?

Albania is a small country with Mediterranean vibes, which has lots to offer. Its geography is blended between high mountains, large lakes, and long sea coasts. Albania has a 530 km coastline including the Adriatic Sea in the north, and the Ionian Sea in the south. If you are a family and you are looking for a peaceful beach to relax, then Golem and Lalzi bay are the destinations. If you are young and looking to party and explore, then head down south to the Ionian bays. In this article, I will list the best beaches based on my experience in the tourism industry.

  1. Cape of Rodon

This beach is located in the Adriatic Sea, 50 km far from Tirana International Airport. It is a quiet place surrounded by a church, a castle, bunkers, and green nature.

2. Kallm beach, Durres

Kallm beach is located in the north of Durres. You can reach there driving through a gravel road without signs. It has clear waters, covered with stones. This is the perfect destination if you are staying in Durres and want to explore a lesser populated area.

3. Rana e Hedhun (Thrown Sand)

It is a rare formation of sand from Mount Renci, which creates beautiful views of the Adriatic Sea. Next to the beach are located many hotels and restaurants. In June is organized Unum Festival, 5 days of electronic music. You can reach there driving through Shengjin village in Lezha district.

4. Plazhi i Gjeneralit

This is another hidden spot in the Adriatic Sea. You will need to drive through a bumpy and dirt road, which is totally worth the panoramic views.

5. Grama bay 

It is a gem in the Karaburun peninsula. In ancient times, pirates used to stop and hide here. There are two ways to get here: an 8-hour long hike from Llogara National park or by boat leaving from the port of Vlora. If you choose to hike, make sure to get a guide who knows the area. It is worth camping overnight here and watching the stars.

6. Palasa beach

Palasa is a luxury area with private villas. The beach is known by the locals as “Rruget e Bardha”, which means “white paths” because of the white little rocks. If you don’t want to rent an expensive villa, stay in the old village above the main road.

7. Dhermi beach

Dhermi is the most famous beach in Albania. The old village is renovated recently and it is blended with stone houses and churches. The beach is a heaven with crystal blue waters and secret bays. It is highly recommended to young people who like to party hard.

8. Gjipe bay

This charming bay has been explored last 15 years. The way to get there takes 30 minutes walk from the main road parking. The river passing by has created a canyon which can be easily explored by anyone. For the adventurous spirits, there are some rock climbing routes. It is a rural bay without hotels, only a small summer restaurant. Take your camping equipment for an overnight to enjoy it in depth.

9. Aquarium bay

Aquarium bay is secretly hidden on the Ionian coast. When you are in Jal beach, continue walking or driving south along the coast. After 10 min on the gravel road, a small bay with splendid waters will appear. A great way to run away from the crowds.

10. Livadhi beach

When driving south of Albanian Riviera, before Himare is located the bay of Livadh. The beach is filled with small rocks and relaxing for families. You can find many restaurants and hotels in the area. Take some time to discover nearby Himara castle, which offers great views of the whole bay.

11. Filikur beach

Are you in Himara and want to get to a real privy beach? Then Filikur bay is the answer. You can reach there by boat from Himare, or even kayaking. You will hear that there is another way to hike from the mountain, but I wouldn’t recommend it. It is dangerous and requires the use of ropes and climbing skills. Take some food and drinks and enjoy the rest of the day in your own privacy.

12. Llamani beach

Llaman is another enchanting bay 5 minutes far from Himara town.  It is very popular in the summer, where you can find many restaurants and bars. Make sure to get there in the morning as it gets very crowdy during the day.

13. Porto Palermo beach

Porto Palermo is a place where you can find a lot of history, besides nice beach. In the middle is located a great medieval fortress. On the north of the bay is the submarine port built during the communist regime. In the south part of the bay is a beautiful small beach. If you love scuba diving and snorkeling, this is the perfect spot.

14. Qeparo beach

Qeparo is a nice village with relaxing shores, more preferable by families. A couple of good restaurants which serve delicious seafood can be found around. Take a walk to the upper village to experience and meet friendly locals.

15. Borsh beach

This village is very famous for its olive groves and olive oil. The shores are perfect for family time. South Outdoor is a festival with music and outdoor activities happening each year.

16. Lukove beach

If you have chosen to drive the Albanian Riviera, take a stop at Lukove beach. The village is quite friendly and it has a unique tranquil atmosphere. 

17. Krorez beach

Krorez is a lost paradise in the Ionian Sea. It is accessible only by boats living from port of Saranda. You can find many daily trips to this bay and nearby Kakome bay. 

18. Pulebardha beach (Seagulls)

Driving from Sarande down south to Ksamil are located many small beaches. One of the most beautiful is Pulebardha beach. Blue waters and the sounds of waves are the treats of this bay.

19. Kep Merli

Kep Merli is a private luxury beach. You will need to reserve in advance and be lucky to get access. Famous people like Dua Lipa take their vacations here.

20. Ksamil beach

Ksamil Islands are the cream de la cream of the Albanian Riviera. They face Corfu Island, which is 4 km away. The beach has white sand and clear waters. It is a small area with lots of visitors in the summer. You can rest in the many of hotels nearby.

21. Pema e thate (Dry Tree)

“Pema e thate” can be accessed from Ksamil village through a dirt bumpy road. It is within Corfu channel and has some restaurants and bar. Recommended for day trips from Ksamil or Sarande.

22. Pogradec beach

If you think that you can find nice beaches only in Albanian sea, you are wrong! Get to Pogradec in the south east and discover the calm of the Lake Ohrid. This is the oldest lake in Europe, separated between Albania and North Macedonia. There are a couple of beaches like Pogradec city, Tushemisht and Lin village. You can go fishing “koran” or “belushka”, two rare fishes founded only in this lake. Highly recommended to families.

How to travel in the Balkans in 2024?

How to travel in the Balkans in 2024?

Depending on your type of traveling, you decide for your next destination. People choose a Balkan itinerary, because they get to see where western culture meets with the eastern one. As an illustration, European travelers go in the Balkans to experience different cultures and traditions. From Thracian ancestors in Bulgaria and Dacian ancestors in Romania on the east of the Balkans, to Illyrian ancestors on the Western Balkans. Greek mythology in the south, to Austrian – Hungary empire in the north of peninsula, the Balkans represent a blend of history.

Definitely traveling across different countries is unique experience.  In the Balkans, it is sometimes even frustrating when traveling from one country to another. Some countries are not part of EU, some are full members, and few are members of EU, but not Schengen zone. What do you need to know before traveling in the Balkans? How to plan and what countries documents are required to cross borders during 2024? This article will update you and make it easier to when planning to visit this diverse region.

First, you need to know the status of each country in relation with EU zone:

  • Greece, Slovenia, and Croatia are full members of EU and Schengen zone (an area of European countries that have removed all type of border control in their mutual borders)
  • Romania, Bulgaria are members of EU zone, and as of 31 March 2024 are members of Schengen areas 
  • Western Balkan countries (Albania, Bosnia & Hercegovina, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Kosovo, Serbia) are not members of EU or Schengen area (there are border controls)

The infrastructure in the Balkans is in the developing stage and the connections between countries are restricted due to its geography terrain as well. There are couple of air connections, but as a true explorer in the soul, consider the land transportation to get closer to the nature and cities.


There are several trains connections between Ljubljana to Zagreb or vice-a-verse. Check out Train Croatia or Rail for schedules and prices. In the rest of the Balkans aren’t available train connection between countries, unless you are an adventurer and want to consider the scenery route from Bar (Montenegro) – Belgrade (Serbia). Check out for more information Seat 61


Buses are the most popular way of transportation in the Balkans, though they are not the most comfortable and convenient in time. Not all the schedules or tickets are listed online, which requires sometimes to go physically in the main bus station and get a ticket. Keep in mind that you need to have local currency or you will be dragged around.

The well-known bus operator FLIXBUS operates in countries such as Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia, Slovenia, Greece, Serbia. Other website platforms like Bus Croatia or Get By Bus can be helpful to plan in advance your itinerary in the Balkans.

Tip: If you buy the bus ticket physically at the bus station or driver, the prices will be 1-2 € less, but the risk is that there might not be available seats.


Sailing by boat is another amazing way to travel in the Balkans. Croatia offers many choices to visit its island from north to south. Check out for schedules Croatia Ferries

Thousands of islands of Greece can be discovered best by a ferry. You can also cross from Greek Island of Corfu to Sarande, Albania in only 45 min. Schedules & prices Greece Ferries

Other way to explore the Balkan peninsula by boat can be ferries along Danube river in Serbia or Romania.


Remember that when crossing countries in the Balkans, there is always a border control. Some are not popular, the rest might be very busy and you have to wait hours in queue, especially when travelling by bus. Passports are mandatory to be presented and the expiration date shouldn’t be less than 6 months. When traveling with children younger than 18, you need a permission from both parents. If you need a Schengen visa, please show it first the border police.


Consider to consult with a local travel expert, before traveling in the Balkans. Certainly, you can find enough information online, yet travel guides can share coherent tips to make your life easier. Private or small group tours give you great timing to travel slowly and experience local cultures. Contact here for a customised Balkan Trip.



Hidden between grand mountains, standing in the Bocca Bay facing the Adriatic Sea is the old town of Kotor. A beautiful Venetian style city with stone buildings and narrow streets, Kotor was once an important maritime port. Today, it is listed under UNESCO World Heritage and hosts travelers from around the world. Walk up the stairs to medieval castle of San Giovanni to admire the amazing panorama of Bocca Bay. 


Dubrovnik, often referred to as the “Pearl of the Adriatic,” is a captivating city located on the stunning Dalmatian Coast of Croatia. Dubrovnik boasts a fascinating history that dates back to the 7th century. The city evolved into a powerful maritime republic, known as the Republic of Ragusa. The Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a living testament to Dubrovnik’s historical significance. One of the highlights of Dubrovnik is its impressive city walls, which encircle the Old Town. Stretching over 1,940 meters, these walls offer panoramic views of the Adriatic Sea and the red-tiled roofs of the city.


Tirana’s history is an immersive journey through time, reflecting the diverse influences that have shaped the city. Once a part of the Ottoman Empire, the remnants of this legacy are still visible in the form of charming mosques, such as the Et’hem Bey Mosque. The Italian influence, particularly from the era of Fascist occupation, is evident in the architectural landscape. Tirana has undergone a remarkable transformation in recent decades. The cityscape is characterized by a kaleidoscope of colors, with buildings adorned in bright hues – a symbol of the city’s progressive spirit.


Berat, a gem nestled in the heart of Albania, is a city that seamlessly weaves together history, culture, and natural beauty. Known as the “City of a Thousand Windows,” Berat boasts a blend of Ottoman architecture, ancient history, and a stunning landscape that beckons travelers to explore its wonders. Berat is home to a diverse array of religious structures, highlighting its cultural and religious tolerance. The fertile lands surrounding Berat are ideal for vineyards, and the region is renowned for its wine and olive oil production.


Ohrid is situated on the shores of Lake Ohrid and stands as one of the oldest cities in the Balkan region. Its name is believed to be derived from the ancient Greek word “Lychnidos,” meaning “city of light.” The Byzantine influence is palpable in Ohrid’s architecture, particularly in its abundance of medieval churches. Explore the old town, a bustling market where Ottoman architecture meets vibrant local life.


Sarajevo’s rich history is woven with influences from various civilizations, and one can witness the Ottoman legacy prominently. Stroll through the cobbled streets of Baščaršija, the heart of the Old Bazaar, where the melodious call to prayer resonates from the iconic Gazi Husrev-beg Mosque. The Austro-Hungarian era left its mark on Sarajevo, evident in the stunning architecture of the Latin Bridge and City Hall. The Latin Bridge holds historical significance as the site of Archduke Franz Ferdinand’s assassination in 1914, a catalyst for World War I.

Novi Sad

As the second-largest city in Serbia, Novi Sad boasts a rich tapestry of history, culture, and natural beauty that has earned it a well-deserved spot on the travel itineraries of those seeking a blend of tradition and modernity. Novi Sad’s history is deeply rooted in a diverse cultural mosaic, evident in its architecture, museums, and historical landmarks. The city’s iconic Petrovaradin Fortress, standing proudly on the banks of the Danube, is a testament to its strategic importance throughout the centuries. Originally built by the Austro-Hungarian Empire in the 17th century, the fortress offers panoramic views of the city and the surrounding landscapes.


With a history spanning over 7,000 years, Sofia has been shaped by various civilizations, leaving behind a tapestry of culture, architecture, and traditions. From its ancient roots as a Thracian settlement to its status as a bustling capital city, Sofia invites visitors to explore its rich heritage, architectural marvels such as: Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, National History Museum, Boyana church, and Vitosha mountain.


Situated in the heart of Bulgaria, Plovdiv’s enchanting old town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, showcasing a mosaic of Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman, and Bulgarian architecture. Its labyrinthine streets are lined with beautifully preserved Revival-era houses, charming cafes, art galleries, and boutique shops. Highlights include the Ethnographic Museum, housed in a grand merchant’s home, and the intricate Church of St. Constantine and Elena. The Roman Amphitheater, dating back to the 2nd century AD, is one of Plovdiv’s most iconic landmarks. Adjacent to the Roman Amphitheater lies the Ancient Stadium of Philippopolis, where athletic competitions were held in antiquity.


Located in the heart of Romania, bordered by the rugged Carpathian Mountains, Transylvania is renowned for its stunning landscapes, medieval castles, and rich cultural heritage. From ancient Dacian tribes to Roman conquests, Hungarian kingdoms to Ottoman rule, Transylvania has been a crossroads of cultures and civilizations. One of Transylvania’s most iconic features is its impressive array of medieval castles such as: Bran (Dracula’s castle), Peles Castle, Corvin Castle.


Thessaloniki, often referred to as Salonica, is the second-largest city in Greece and it serves as a bustling hub of culture, history, and commerce. Founded in 315 BC by Cassander of Macedon, it was named after his wife, Thessalonike, who was the half-sister of Alexander the Great. Throughout its history, Thessaloniki has witnessed numerous civilizations and empires, including the Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman, and modern Greek periods. Each left its mark on the city, contributing to its diverse architectural styles and cultural heritage.

Meteora Monasteries

The name “Meteora,” meaning “suspended in the air” or “in the heavens above,” perfectly captures the essence of this remarkable site. It is renowned for its stunning rock formations, which rise dramatically from the Thessalian plain, creating a landscape that seems almost surreal. The most striking feature of Meteora is undoubtedly its monasteries, perched precariously atop towering rock pillars. These monasteries, originally built by monks seeking solitude and spiritual isolation, have a history dating back to the 14th century. At its peak, there were 24 monasteries in Meteora, but today only six remain active and open to visitors: the Great Meteoron, Varlaam, Rousanou, St. Nicholas Anapausas, St. Stephen, and Holy Trinity.