Albania is well-known for its contributions to culture, which stretches back over two millennia. You can see artifacts and works of art created by the people who call Albania home in the country`s many museums, of which the Durrës Archaeological Museum and the National Art Gallery are two not to be missed. Albania`s beaches are very popular, ranging from the untouched and pristine to flashy and touristy. Finally, it can`t be ignored that Albania`s Communist-era history and relics set it apart even from other former Communist nations in Eastern Europe.
Nearly all visitors to the country arrive in the capital, Tirana, and spend a few days exploring before heading to the coast. The city of Durrës is one of the oldest in Albania, dating back before the time of the Romans. Nearby is the beautiful Albanian Riviera, with such cities and towns as Sarandë, Ksamil, and Vlorë. The largest lake in Southern Europe, Lake Skadar, is a nationally protected wetland, and the ancient city of Shkodër sits between its banks and the Albanian Alps.
The best time to visit Albania are the shoulder periods, which are April through June and September and October. In the high period (July-August), crowds are at their largest, prices for accommodations are at their highest, and much of the country is very hot. Temperatures are much more agreeable during the shoulder periods, and you will find yourself in fewer tourist crowds while still being able to enjoy everything on your Albania vacation.
We recommend approximately 7-10 days based on what you want to see and do. We offer flexible vacation packages so you can select your number of nights in each city, desired hotel and activities. We suggest a minimum of 3 nights in major cities.
We recommend seeing Albania by car. The state railway service, Albanian Railways, is typically used by travelers only for the experience, as the train lines do not connect all regions of the country with one another and the rolling stock is second-hand, mainly from former Communist nations and dated stock from Italy and Germany. Albania`s road network has been fully developed since the fall of Communism; there are now three national motorways and nine slightly smaller expressways connecting each region with one another.
The currency of Albania is the lek (written in shorthand as L). U.S. dollars are not accepted. Please be sure to have the correct currency on hand or be prepared to exchange your dollars for lekë upon arrival. Currency exchange desks can be found at many locations throughout the country.
English is a very popular foreign language for Albanians, and at least two-thirds of people under 30 can speak English. It may be harder to find older speakers of English as the Communist government which ruled until 1991 prioritized full English-language instruction only for a select few. You should have no problem finding English-speakers in large cities and on the Albanian Riviera. To ask someone in Albanian if anyone around speaks English, show them this sentence: A flet njeri anglisht?