A dive into the heart of the interwoven Balkans cultures, diverse histories and religions; visiting ancient Greek and Roman ruins, Byzantine basilicas, Orthodox monasteries with golden mosaics, and Ottoman mosques, through villages with stone houses and red roofs. A cultural trip, taking you through the history of the region, that will give you an enormous appreciation and understanding of these three beautiful countries.
Meet with the guide at Tirana Airport. Depart for the ancient town of Shkoder in northern Albania, a few kilometers from the Montenegro border. Once arrived, the group will visit the ancient fortress of Rozafa (fourth century B.C.) from which one can enjoy a marvelous panoramic view of the city. Shkoder has been inhabited since the Bronze Age and is built upon many historical civilizations (Illyrian, Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman). The trip will take the group to the city’s Catholic Cathedral. Shkoder is the spiritual center of the Albanian Catholic Church and welcomed Pope Francis in 2015.
Arrive at the hotel in the city center. In the afternoon, the group take a walk through the pedestrian zone “Rruga Kol Idromeno”, recently restored with colorful houses and vibrant bars. Dinner of roast beef in a restaurant in the city. Overnight at Hotel.
06.00 – Early breakfast in the hotel
06:30 – Drive to Lake Koman
09.30 – Arrive at the ferry terminal to board the ferry to enjoy the Drin River valley.
Formed following the construction of the dam on the Drin river in 1978, Koman Lake is an artificial lake in a spectacular natural setting called the fjord of the country of the eagles.
12:00 – Arrive in Fierza and continue to the Valbona valley. A stop in Bajram Curri Town for lunch at a local restaurant. Visit the National Park of Valbona valley that extends for about 8000 hectares through breathtaking landscapes of the Albanian Alps in the midst of lush forests, waterfalls and crystalline torrents.
16:30 – Drive to the border with Kosovo to the town of Gjakova.
20:00 – Hotel accommodation and free time for dinner.
8.00 – After breakfast at the hotel, depart to Peç Monastery – the patriarchal monastery which is the spiritual home of the mausoleum and the archbishops and Serbian patriarchs. The guide will show you the temple of the apostles, Saint Dimitrio and Saint Nicola. Continue on to the Monastery of Deçan, another important temple of the Orthodox Church. This monastery, the first one of the Kosovo region as a UNESCO world heritage site, is considered as one of the most interesting architectural medieval Serbian Churches.
12:00 – Depart Deçan for Prizren.
13:00 to 14:00 – Free time for lunch in Prizren in one of the local restaurants in the old town. Visit the city, center of the Kosovar culture. Exploration of the old town, its Ottoman bridge, fountain, its mosques and Orthodox churches. The city is renowned for its rich culinary tradition.
16:30 – Continue to Pristina.
Hotel accommodation and free time for dinner.
08:00 – After breakfast at the hotel, meet with the guide and visit the city.
09:45 – Drive to the Gracanica Monastery, belonging to the Serbian Orthodox Church, founded by the Serbian King Stefan Milutin in 1321.
11:15 to 12:30 – Departure for Skopje.
13:00 to 14:30 – Lunch in the old town in Skopje.
14:30 to 17:00 – Visit the city.
Hotel accommodation and overnight in Skopje.
08:00 – After breakfast in the hotel meet the guide and departure to Ohrid via Debar. Visit the Mavrovo National Park. Lunch at a local restaurant in the Nationale Park.
14:30 – Drive to Ohrid. Stop along the way to visit the Monastery of St Jovan Bigorski.
16:30 – Continue to Ohrid.
17:30 – Hotel accommodation after a short visit of leisure through the town.
09:00 – after breakfast in the hotel meeting with the guide and departure to St. Naum.
Visit of the Monastery rich in the history of the Orthodox religion, founded by the namesake saint, a Bulgarian scholar and missionary in 905. Thanks to the efforts of St. Clement and St. Naum of Ohrid, the first pan-Slavic University in Europe, the famous Ohrid literary school, was founded.
12:00 – departure from St. Naum to go to the city of Ohrid. Located on the shores of Lake Ohrid, the town was declared a UNESCO heritage. Visit of the church of S. Sofia (XI century) which is the most important medieval monument in Macedonia, with magnificent Byzantine frescoes, paintings, of St. Clement Church with its icon of the Annunciation. Visit St. Bogorodica Perivlepta, San Joan Kaneo, St. Patelejmon , the old bazaar, the fortifications of Ohrid, the fortress of King Samoil, the ancient theater, the museum of icons, the Mesokastro settlements, the settlements of Kaneo.
18:00 – Transfer to the hotel. Free time for dinner.
Breakfast at the hotel. Departure to Tirana.
10.30 – Visit of Tirana, the central town square with the statue of Skanderbeg, the Mosque of Ethem Bej, the Clock Tower and the main boulevard. Visit the National Historical Museum.
12:30 to 14:00 – Free time for lunch in Tirana. Departure for Kruja
15:00 – 17.00 – Visit of the historic town of Kruja located in northeast of Tirana, 560 m above sea level and. Kruja has been inhabited since the third century B.C.. It was accredited for the first time as a Christian religious center in the year 879. The famous English painter Edward Lear, who visited Kruja in 1848, wrote: “Kruja, a charming little town nestled in the sky.” Visit of the castle, its typical Ottoman bazaar, the Museum of Skanderbeg and the Ethnographic Museum.
18.00 – Departure for Durres . Durres, one of the most ancient cities in Albania has the largest port in the country and is the second largest industrial center after Tirana. Durres is located on a small peninsula on the Adriatic Sea coast. The city was colonized by the Greeks in 627 B.C.. It was named Epidamnos, later becoming Dyrrachium. From the Venetian Tower near the harbor, the medieval city walls take you to the Roman amphitheater (capacity 15,000 spectators), the largest in the Balkans, dated second century B.C., which contains a Christian crypt with a rare mosaic. Durres has Roman and Byzantine ruins. Beautiful archaeological museum. Overnight in the hotel.
After breakfast at the hotel departure to Mother Teresa Airport.
Discover the most beautiful sites in Albania, northern Greece and Macedonia – rich in architecture and history, with stunning archaeological sites that blend contemporary cultures with ancient civilization.
Discovering the land of the Illyrians, where the history and the culture of the West and East are interweaved. A country so near, yet so far away, that finally opened to the world after years of isolation.
Discovering breathtaking landscapes, ancient cities, royal palaces, archaeological sites and so many stories about the history and peoples of this part of Balkans …
Travel Albania manages and organizes trips and holidays, short trips to the city, beach holidays, family vacations, sea excursions, trekking and much more. We have a decade of experience in incoming tourism services and specific technical training in Italy.
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