12 Days Grand Albania Hiking and Cultural Tour

  • Highlights
  • Intinerary
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This tour will start from the Capital of Albania and will be concentrated mostly in: walking and hiking in the mountains of the northern Albanian Alps. You will have the chance of discovering stunning northern Albanian history and legends, History of Kruja, the magical Thethi village, and Shkodra, which used to be the old Capital of the Ancient Illyrian Empire. You will have a stunning Panoramic view during your hike, tasting of traditional Albanian food and a lot of fresh air, also having an experience of ferry ride back to Shkodra. Have a traditional lunch in a famous restaurant near Shkodra and then go back to Tirana. Second part of the Tour you will visit the most Attractive Historical city’s in the south of Albania, Including National Parks, Castles, Archeological sites, and one of a kind beaches of Albania.

Included in the Price

  • 3 nights` Accommodation in Guest Houses and 8 Nights in Hotels 3 or 4 stars
  • Breakfast daily
  • 4 Dinners
  • 4 Lunches
  • Licensed Guide included
  • 11 guided sightseeing tours, Hiking tours and select entrance fees
  • Transport and Driver Included

Description

  • Day 1

Discover Kruja history and visit Shkodra city
Meet and assist the guide at Tirana airport. The guide will give you general information about the tour that you will have. You will depart to Kruja city and there you will

visit: The old Market, Bazaar and the
Skanderbeg Museum and the Ethnographic Museum. You will Spend time in Kruja for shopping and pictures and Enjoy this stunning ottoman old town. After lunch in a traditional restaurant drive to Shkodra. Start sightseeing the city.

Visit: Rozafa Castle, Pedestrian Area, Buna River, Marubi Photographic Museum and the Kings
Mosque. Shkodra is the most important town of north Albania and the Illyrian capital, in the 3rd century BC. Check –in the hotel and have free time in Shkodra.

Dinner and overnight in Shkodra.

  • Day 2

Start the Adventure to Thethi Village
Have breakfast in the hotel (or take small breakfast packets). Start your trip to the mountains with Off-road car driven by a very professional Driver. You will Enjoy the driving while having photo stops or coffee breaks on the way Arrival in Thethi village and have lunch in the guesthouse. After having some free time in the Village start visiting the village with the guide. Several well-known writers that were impressed by its stunning and rather inaccessible location in the middle of vertical mountains have described the small village. Still today, most of the
houses or ‘kulla’ are built in grey stone and roofed with wooden planks. Traditions remain strong and authentic. You will walk down from the house (850m) and visit the attractions of the village, including the
Church, Kulla e Ngujimit (a tower house used in the past by men as a shelter against ongoing vendettas). During the walk you will have many breaks for water or coffee. This part the walk will be mostly
climbing. You will end up at the Thethi waterfall and peer at the rocky narrows of the Grunasi Canyon from the wooden bridge of Grela. Near the canyon are found stonewalled terraces dating from the late bronze era, revealed only in 2007. Back to the guesthouse and have free time.

Traditional Dinner and overnight Theth.

  • Day 3

Enjoy Hiking Day to the “Blue Eye” of Thethi
After breakfast meet the Guide, take the picnic lunches and start the walking to Blue eye After 8 km of nice walking near the Thethi river arrival to “Nderlysa” to discover the most interesting kind of Landscapes. Have a break at this stunning place and after that, continue to the famous “Blue Eye” After 2 km of walking arrival at the blue eye and have to picnic lunch. Enjoy the exceptional source of water that it’s called Blue Eye. After the visit transfer back to the guesthouse. Have
traditional dinner in the guesthouse and taste Rakia an amazing alcohol beverage. Overnight in Theth.

  • Day 4

Hiking Trip to the Top of Valbona Mountain
After breakfast meet the guide and depart to Valbona valley.
During the walk you will have many breaks for water or coffee. The walk will be mostly climbing. After 3 hours hiking & climbing you will arrive at Valbona Neck, which lays 1820 m above the sea level. Have your picnic lunch at the famous Valbone Neck. Continue your walk.
Arrive in Valbona Village. Check –in at the guesthouse and have some free time for relaxation in the village. Have traditional dinner in the guest House.

Dinner and Overnight in Valbona.

  • Day 5

Going Back to Tirana
After breakfast depart to Port of Fierza to take the ferryboat. Arrival at the port and take the ferry. Have free time to take pictures around the area that is very interesting and amazing. We depart to Tirana city. In Tirana

visit the main Boulevard, Skanderbeg Square, the Mosque, the Bunker, the Pyramid, Mother Theresa Square, Administrative Buildings and Blloku. In the afternoon we visit Castle of Petrela. Lunch in Petrela.

Dinner and overnight in Tirana.

  • Day 6

Driving to the south and Visit Archeological site “Apollonia”
Start your second part of the tour which is discovering the south of Albania, towards the coastal city of Vlora and the national park Llogara. Before getting there, we will visit the ancient ruins of Apollonia which is around 2 Hours driving Time from Tirana.

Apollonia, its Byzantine Monastery and, the Museum of Archaeology.
Founded in 588BC by Greeks from Corinth, the city quickly grew to 50,000 residents by the second century BC. Apollonia archeological site later became a free Roman city after it sided with Julius Caesar
during the war against Pompey. It developed into a cultural center until the 3rd century AD when an earthquake rerouted a river and led to the city’s decline.

After The visit with Local Guide You will have lunch under the shade of the trees in the restaurant of the Apollonia Park.  You will be transferred in Vlora which is not more then 1 hour Driving time away.

Dinner and overnight in Vlora.

  • Day 7

Boat Trip to Karaburun from Vlora
After Breakfast you will meet the guide and start your Boat Tour around the Vlora exotic city. You will depart to the port of Vlora to board the boat, which will take us on a lovely cruise along the
Karaburun Peninsula. It is the largest peninsula of Albania, it has an area of 62 km2 (24 sq mi) and is not populated. It is 16
kilometers (9.9 mi) long with a width that varies from 3 to 4.5 kilometers. The peninsula is a Nature Reserve, and parts are still a military zone. While its’ surrounding sea waters form part of the Karaburun – Sazan National Marine Park. Near there is a point where the Ionian and Adriatic seas meet. You can see also the infamous Sazan
Island, which has been until recently an army base. Sazan has a coastline of 15 km and along its western shore there are cliffs descending up to 40 meters underwater. Sazan has a climate unusual for Albania due to its’ maritime location. The flora is different from that of the rest of Albania as it is subtropical, like in
countries of North Africa. You will see the Haxhi Aliu’s pirate cave and will have some time on a small beach where you can swim
in the crystal-clear waters. After some “me time” we will return back to Vlora and will travel back to your hotel.

Dinner and overnight in Vlora.

  • Day 8

Hiking in the National Park of Llogara and Stay on the Beach.
After breakfast we depart to Mount Çika, (Qafa e Eres 1600m). This Hiking Tour will be located in the National Park of Llogara. The Cika mountain (2045m) is the highest massive of southwestern Albania. From the summit, you can admire the mighty view of the highlands of
“Labëria” – land of southern shepherds – and the splendor of the Ionian Sea with Corfu and other minor Greek islands on the horizon.
After completing the hike, we will drive further along the Ionian coast, via Himara, until we reach the village of Qeparo at the sea.
Before reaching the village we will stop to visit the bay of Porto Palermo and the Ali Pasha Tepelena fortress. The splendid bay of Palermo served as an important submarine base during the regime days. The semi abandoned base, its tunnel and structures are still visible and the main attraction of the bay is the 19th century fortress in the central promontory, built by the powerful Ali Pasha Tepelena.
After the visit, we will drive for 15 minutes to the nearby Qeparo, where we will check in at a guesthouse by the sea. In the afternoon, You will have also the possibility to walk up to the old village on top of the hill.

Dinner and overnight in Qeparo

  • Day 9

Drive into the Riviera and Visit Famous Butrint
archeological site
The drive will bring us further south along the splendid Albanian Riviera. During the morning of this day you can have free time for beach relaxing (depending on you). After Lunch time you will depart to Saranda. Saranda it is set in a lovely horseshoe bay. It has been a holiday resort destination since communist times.Start the visit of Archeological Site of Butrint

Mentioned by Cicero, it acquired its current name in honor to forty (Saranda in
Greek) Christian legionnaires who were put to death in 320AD. Nearby, following a panoramic road along the lagoon are the ruins of the ancient Butrint that we are going to visit. “Butrint is undeniably a beautiful place. Close to modern civilization yet with its monuments in
thick woodland. With remains dating from so many different periods covering two and a half thousand years. Set in a marshy landscape besides the busy straits separating Corfu from Albania, it is also an environmental haven rich in bird life. You will have Dinner in a restaurant not far from Butrinti,

Dinner and overnight in Saranda.

  • Day 10

Visit of Blue Eye and Gjirokastra
After Breakfast Depart to Gjirokaster.We will leave the coast and drive inland towards Gjirokastër – the City of Stone. On your way to Gjirokaster you can visit a wonderful spot called “ the Blue Eye” spring, formed by the underground springs, to take a coffee meanwhile you learn about the legend of this very
attractive spot. Arrive in Gjirokaster. Here, we will visit the Castle, the Museum of Weapons, the Ethnographic Museum and we will take a walk along the stone paved alleys of the town. Gjirokastër is one of Albania’s most beautiful historic towns, with a citadel dating from the 13th. century. From the walls of the castle, one can admire the view of its districts and the large valley of river Drinos. Walks along the stone paved streets will bring you to discover its charming Albanian traditional architecture. It was in these gray-colored streets that Enver Hoxha (the notorious Albanian dictator) and Ismail Kadare (the notorious Abanian writer) grew up.

Dinner and overnight in Gjirokaster.

  • Day 11

Visit the city of 1001 windows
Next Day you will depart to Berat which is is the best-preserved historic town of Albania. Illyrian, Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman and Socialist buildings accumulated over 2400 years, showing the importance and the rich history of Berat.
We will walk in the characteristics neighborhood “Mangalemi” to visit the Ethnographic museum. Then we will hike up to visit the citadel district of Berat, its splendid orthodox churches and the Onufri Icons museum – named after the famous 16th century master painter of
icons and murals. The building where the museum is housed shows the important architectonic values of Berat’s buildings. Lunch at a traditional restaurant in Berat. Late in the afternoon, we will drive on to the port city of Durres (92km/1hr30min), where we
will have a stop for refreshment by the sea, before we continue our way back to Tirana.

Dinner and overnight in Tirana.

  • Day 12

Transfer to the airport for homebound flight.

This is the dey when you will be transfer t the airport and the end of our service.

Additional information

Location

Albania

Nights

11 Nights

Tour type

Cultural, Hiking, Moderated and Difficult

Accomodation

Guest Houses, Hotels 3 Stars, Hotels 4 stars and guest Houses

Level

Only for hiking tourists

Hiking Days

5 Days