Best of Albania Day 1: Airport-Tirana Arrival at "Mother Teresa" Airport. Transfer to hotel in Tirana. Present-day thriving Tirana was founded in the early 17th century by Sulejman Pasha of Mulleti who built a settlement consisting of a mosque,and a number of shops. Exploring the block ex communist area. Dinner at castel of Peza traditional food. Overnight at hotel in Tirana. Day 2: Tirana After breakfast, full day sightseeing tour of Tirana including, Tanners Bridge, the Mosque of Et'hem Bej, the Clock Tower, the National Historical Museum, and excursion to Mt. Dajti by cable car. Lunch. In afternoon, visits to the Galley of Arts and the Buneci house, built in the 17th century, displaying works by a master cooper craftsman. Dinner at a local restaurant. Overnight at hotel in Tirana Day 3: Tirana - Kruja - Durres Morning departure for Kruja, home of Albania's National hero, Scanderbeg, who in the 15th century successfully fought off the Turks for over thirty years. Sightseeing at the Old Castle, the impressive Scanderbeg Museum, the Ethnographic Museum, and shopping at the Turkish-style old bazaar. Lunch at local restaurant with delicious traditional dishes. Continue on to Durres. Visits to one of the largest Roman Amphitheaters in the Balkans and Venetian Tower. Dinner and overnight at hotel in Durres. Day 4: Durres - Elbasan - Pogradec - Tushemisht Morning drive to Elbasan. Short stop to visit the ruins of the Ottoman fortress in the city center and St. Mary's Orthodox Church. Continue on to Pogradec alongside the banks of Shkumbini river, traveling through the Domosdova plateau, site of Skanderbeg's first victory over the Turks in 1444. En-route stop in Lin to visit the mosaics and the archaeological site. Lunch at local restaurant. Free afternoon to enjoy the panoramic view of the area. Try a local dinner of the Koran fish, which is a specialty of Lake Ohrid. Overnight at hotel in Pogradec. Day 5: Tushemisht - Korca - Voskopoja - Korca After breakfast, departure for Korca, one of the most important cities in South-Eastern Albania. Visit the Museum of Medieval Arts and Birra Korca factory, which produces one of most famous beers of Albania. Continue to the isolated mountain village of Voskopoja, one of the most important towns in the European part of the Ottoman empire during the 18th century. Visit the Church of St. Nicholas, which is a treasure of early 18th century frescoes. Lunch." Return to Korca to visit the First Albanian School, the Old Korca bazaar, and Mirahori Mosque. Dinner and overnight at hotel in Korca with traditional music “Serenada”. Day 6: Korca –Erseke- Permet – Kelcyre - Gjirokastra
Morning departure for Gjirokastra, a museum city and UNESCO heritage site. We drive through scenic southern highlands, via Erseka, Permeti, and Kelcyra Lunch in Permeti, known for its production of traditional raki (brandy) and wine. In the afternoon we arrive in Gjirokastra and visit the Ethnographic Museum, the Ottoman fortress, and the Weapons Museum. Dinner at local restaurant traditional food. Overnight at hotel "Cajupi Gjirokaster." Day 7: Gjirokastra - Saranda - Butrint - Saranda After breakfast, drive to Saranda, "the pearl of the Albanian Riviera," which takes its name from a monastery dedicated to the Forty Saints, the last traces of which disappeared during the second world war. En-route stop at Blue Eye springs (small group). Lunch. In the afternoon, we visit the Greek and Roman ruins of Butrint, Albania's most important archaeological site protected by “UNESCO”. Dinner at Lekuresi castle restaurant (small group). Overnight at hotel in Saranda. Day 8: Saranda - Himare – Llogora - Vlora This morning, visit to the Jewish Synagogue and the city center of Saranda. Drive to Vlora along the mountain road known as Albanian Riviera. Short stop in the waterfall of Borsh. En-route visit the Ali Pasha Fortress at Porto Palermo Bay. Lunch in Llogara with local products and polyphonic music. Continue to Vlora through Llogara Pass (3500 feet above sea level). In the afternoon visit the Muradie Mosque and Flag Square. Dinner and overnight at hotel in Vlora. This city has a long history, but its main claim to fame is as the place where Albanian independence was proclaimed in 1912. Day 9: Vlora - Apollonia - Berat After breakfast, we visit the Independence square. Continue to Fieri to visit the Apolonia Archaeological site. Lunch at local restaurant. In the afternoon drive to Berat. En-route visit an Albanian Winery to taste one of the best Albanian wines and walking tour of Berat to visit Bachelors Mosque, the King's Mosque, the Leaden Mosque, and the Tekke of the Helveti or Dervishes. Dinner and overnight in Berat Day 10: Berat - Arednice- Tirana Breakfast. Morning visit of the Citadel, built on top of a rocky hill, the Cathedral of St. Nicholas (Onufri Museum), and the Church of St. Mary of Vllaherna which has 16th century mural paintings by Onufri, Albania's most famous Medieval painter, and his son Nicola. Lunch in Ardenica Monastery. Drive to Tirana for dinner and overnight at hotel. Day 11: Tirana - Airport Breakfast. Transfer to airport for departure.
End of our service.