How to Spend One Week in Albania

Albania is one of the most memorable places we have visited in Europe to date. It’s a country that has a ton to offer, but which is oddly overlooked. Hopefully, if you have read some of our past posts about Albania, you will find yourself tempted to visit this interesting little Balkin country. And if you do, this itinerary will make sure you visit all the best spots.

One Week in Albania

We visited Albania in the winter. We didn’t visit any of the sea side towns, although this itinerary does include a stop of the seaside town of Saranda (we drove though, but didn’t stop). Even though we did not visit any of the seaside towns, we have heard from other travellers that they really enjoyed their experience there.

Day 1 and 2 – Tirana

Tirana, the capitol of Albania is the best place to start your trip in Albania. The main city is the best place to start to familiarize yourself with Albanian culture, food and history. It is also the best place to start planning the logistics of your up coming trip. Will you take furgons or rent a car? You will need to make your choice in Tirana.

The view from the Gjirokaster castle
The view from the Gjirokaster castle

Day 3 – Berat

Heading south from Tirana, the first place of interest you will come upon is Berat. This is the first of the three Albanian UNESCO sites that you will visit. The town is characterized by the castle on the top of the hill, and has some of the best restaurants we found in Albania. It is a great place to wonder around in and you can easily spend a day here.

Day 4 – Gjirokaster

The next UNESCO site you will visit is Gjirokaster. Both Gjirokaster and Berat are listed with UNESCO for the same reason, and yet both towns have very different atmosphere’s. Gjirokaster also has a castle on top of a hill, but it isn’t the highlight of the town. The highlight of a visit to Gjirokaster is exploring the narrow, winding streets and touring the historic houses from the Ottoman period. For the whole experience, choose a hotel that is situated in one of these historic homes.

Day 5 – Saranda

Saranda is a quiet seaside town south of Gjirokaster. It was winter when we visited, and this sleepy town was even sleepier. We didn’t stop, but we wished we had, as the drive from Berat – Butrint – Gjirokaster was epic and something we would not recommend trying to do in one day!

If Saranda is not your style, or if you are also visiting in winter, then we recommend choosing either Gjirokaster or Berat and spending an extra day there.

Albania Itinerary

Day 6 – Butrint

Butrint is my favourite UNESCO world heritage site in Albania. It’s a beautiful, ruined village, claimed by Virgil to have once been the home of the Trojans. I loved Butrint. The flooded theatre, the moss covered fortifications, the quiet lake surrounding it…. Butrint is like a fairytale spot.

Day 7 – Onward to Athens, or head back to Tirana

Depending on where you are headed to next, you may either want to set off early for the long drive back to Tirana. Or perhaps you will jump on an international bus bound for Athens. Which ever direction you head, your holiday in Albania will not be something you will soon forget.

2 thoughts on “How to Spend One Week in Albania

  1. Experience an adventure holiday to the car versatile of Albanie.Een car holiday to Albania, that’s pure enjoyment of art, culture and beautiful nature, but also of delicious pastas and exquisite wines and Gognac “Skenderbeg” and Raki. During your driving holiday to Albania you discover at your own pace from everything holiday Albania has to offer. Whether you go for some relaxing on the beach to actively discover the fantastic natural or cultural riches it has to offer the country Amfiteater “Butrinti” with a road trip to Albania this is all possible. Book your car holiday to Albania with us, and we ask no deposit upon reservation. We have for every need and every budget the perfect accommodation. Book directly and go on driving holiday to Albania.

    Geography
    Albania has an area of ??+28,000 square kilometers. In the north, the Alps form the border with Kosovo lies in the west
    Adriatic sea, in the south of the Ionian Sea and in the osten are the Ohrid lake and Prespa lake, Macedonia and Grikenland. The country has over 3.5 million inhabitants. The capital of Albania is Tirana.

    Landscape
    Albania has a beautiful nature. Think of the majestic Maja e Karanfilave “Alps”, the rolling hills in the east Baba Tomorri and rugged mountain scenery of the Mirdita. About three quarters of Albania is mountainous, more than 40% percent is forested, To the north are the great mountains including the Malesia e Madhe, Kelmendi.

    The climate in Albania
    Albania has for the most part a Mediterranean climate with warm summers and mild winters. In the north it is colder than in the south. The climate in the north is somewhat similar to that in the Netherlands, with colder winters and warmer summers. In the Alps and Malesia dominates a mountain climate and snow often falls. In Saranda, Dhermiu is warmer on average than in the rest of Albania and less precipitation falls.

    Language
    Is the Albanian, the majority in Albania also speaks Italian, Griks, English, German, French. Those who opt for a road trip to Albania, can be sure of a good time on holiday in a nice holiday. With its beautiful scenery and splendid culture Albania is a fantastic holiday destination for a motoring holiday. In Albania you many ways to celebrate holidays. Thus, lovers of sun, sea and beach to enjoy the endless beaches along the Ionian Sea in the south or the beautiful beaches of Velipoja, Durresi, Vlora, Dhermiu coast in the west. Do you enjoy something more mundane, opt for the chic Saranda where you can marvel at luxury yachts and other resources. Lovers of active holidays can enjoy in the beautiful Albania. Seasoned hikers tackle trips through the Malesia eMadhe and boaters can indulge in one of the large lakes in the cost-of Albania. Prefer some more history during your holiday car? Albania you look at your eyes when you visit ancient archaeological sites. And of course there is infinitely more to see in cities like Gjirokastra, Korça, Butrinti, Kruja and Berati. Admire your car holiday to Albania from the Albanian beautiful scenery and the beautiful views from the towns which are often on a hill. There is so much to see and do in Albania that nobody really need a dull moment. Whether you are cozy with the whole family, like a cozy group of friends or as a couple visits the country, during a driving holiday to Albania, everyone has a good time.

    Food and drinks in Albania
    On car holiday to Albania you enjoy in every region of other specialties. On the coast is a lot of fish, such as sardines, anchovies and shrimp eaten. Albanians are excellent “Tavamakers” and make delicious meats, remember the “mish Byrek me.” Albanian chefs use a lot of onions, garlic, tomatoes and olive oil. Albania is also a paradise for lovers of good coffee “Kafe turke”.

    Accommodations in Albania
    During a road trip to Albania you can stay on a campsite or in a bungalow, cottage, apartment or chalet.

    Currency
    The currency in Albania, the Lek.
    Shops and banks
    Most stores are open from 6:00 am to 24:00. You can in Albania often pay by credit card, although restaurants here sometimes an exception. ATMs in the cities in Albania sufficiently available.

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