Come Visit Albania

We have been here a year and writing travel tips turned out to be more difficult than we ever expected. Things come and go so quickly here! And not understanding the language well, much is missed. But here are a few tips to start with.

Getting here

There really are 2 ways, fly directly to Tirana International Airport (TIA) or fly to Rome, take the train to Bari and then take a boat over from Bari. The ferries run daily, most days but sometimes they don’t run – bad weather in winter is the biggest reason for them to skip a day. You just have to check the schedules.

If you are in Rome, then there are some less expensive flights from Rome to Tirana. Sometimes it is cheaper to book you ticket from home to Rome, then catch the shuttle flight from Rome to Tirana. Some of the airlines have their own websites and do not show up in the Expedia or Travelocity type services. Also be aware that not all flights occur each day.

  • www.belleair.it
  • http://www.alitalia.com/us%5Fen/?no
  • www.malev.hu (not sure if this will go Rome to Tirana)

And have 10 euro with you to get through passport control. Do not expect to be able to get change.

What to do

Tourism is a new venture here and so come expecting it to be a bit frustrating. You will not always get the best price and service, and amenities are just now starting to be understood. But, you will find it safe and the people are genuinely friendly. The price gouging is not personal, it is just a holdover from communism. It is still a rare occasion for Americans to get to Albania, while western Europe is starting to discover Albania.

From Durres, there are several day trips – Tirana, the capital; Kruja, the residence of Skanderbeg; Berat, a world heritage site. Overnight trips could include Berat, but definitely Gjirokastra or Pogradec are a one or two night stay as the trips there are long by bus. Remember, travel is by bus or furgon, and though the distances are short, the road conditions and the stopping to pick-up or let-off riders slows you down. But that is part of the adventure.

Start thinking about it. We would love to see you!

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