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Albanian Culural Tour
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Albanian Culural Tour

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Key Information:
Tour Duration: 7 - 12 day(s)
Group Size: 10 - 30 people
Destination(s): Albania  
Specialty Categories: Cultural Journey  
Season: January - December
Airfare Included: No
Tour Customizable: Yes
Minimum Per Person Price: 560 Euro (EUR)
Maximum Per Person Price: 830 Euro (EUR)

Tour Itinerary:

Day 1 (Depending on time of arrival): Tirana
- Arrival in Tirana International Airport which is located just 20 min. from the capital’s center
- Meet at the airport with “Balkan Emotions” English speaking guide which be holding a distinctive sign.
- Transfer by motor coach to the hotel in Tirana.
- After check in the reception will inform all the guests about the time of dinner and of one “Balkan Emotions” specialist will be there as well to go throw the itinerary of the next days with all the guests.

Day 2: Tirana and Kruja visit.
09:00 – After breakfast at the hotel meet with our English speaking guide and start the sightseeing tour of Tirana. Tirana, the capital of Albania which is at the same time the most populated town with about 800.000 inhabitants. Located in the center of the country, Tirana is relatively a new city founded in 1614 by Sulejman Pasha Bargjini.
In Tirana we will visit:
1. Skanderbeg Square
2. Ethem Beg Mosque
3. The National Historical Museum
4. The Palace of Culture
5. The University of Tirana
6. Governmental Buildings
7. The Castle of Tirana
8. The primer communist “Block”.

12:00 – After the visit of Tirana we drive towards Kruja. Kruja located 50 km from Tirana. The citadel is famous not only for sightseeing but also for souvenir-hunting. Once Kruja was the medieval capital of Albania and strength hold of the Albanian National Hero (Gjergj Kastrioti Scanderbeg). The city is located at about 700 m of altitude, from the castle opens an amazing view over the Adriatic Sea evoking the times of the Albanian resistance throughout centuries. Kruja old bazaar is on e street o f quai nt shop s wit h window s full of antiques, sivler filigree jeweler, folk cos tumes, wove n rugs and tradition al felt hat s.

13:15 – Arrival in Kruja and lunch in a traditional restaurant

15:15 – After lunch we will continue with the sightseeing of Kruja were we will visit:
1. Skanderbegs Museum
2. Ethnographical museum
3. The castle of Kruja
4. The Ottoman Bazaar

17:15 – Departure to Durres.
18:30 – Arrival in Durres and check in at the hotel by the Adriatic Sea.
19:30 – Dinner at the hotel (Overnight in Durres).

Day 3: Durres – Berat (UNESCO). 09:00 – After breakfast at the hotel meet with “Balkan Emotions” English Speaking Guide and start the Sightseeing of Durres. In Durres we can explore the 2638 years old city, where in the last 900 years control of the city has changed 33 times. Illyrians first settled here in 627 BC, and Durres became a prosperous trading harbor. Walking through the narrow streets one encounters the ancient amphitheatre, which is the biggest of its type in the Balkan Peninsula, built between 117-78 BC, it hosted gladiatorial games watched by up to 20,000 people. Amazingly, it lay forgotten until 1966, and 25% of the amphitheatre still remains buried beneath houses.

In Durres we will visit:
1. The Roman Amphitheatre
2. The Venetian Tower
3. The Byzantine Walls
4. The Statue of the Austrian Fighter
5. The Kings Vila (this is Ultimate Access).

12:30 - After the Sightseeing of Durres we will drive towards Berat. Berat is known as a “city of one thousand windows”, and is a declared as a museum city. The old name of the city was Antipatrea. It is built on the slopes of mountain Tomori, with a castle dominating over the city. Within its walls there are dwelling houses and the Onufri Museum, where we see paintings by this outstanding painter from the 16thC, as well as paintings from his son Nikolla. In the old part of the town we visit several Byzantine churches known for their interesting architecture.

14:00 – Arrival in Berat and lunch in a traditional restaurant.
15:30 – After lunch we start with the sightseeing tour of the upper part of Berat were we will visit:
1. The Castle of Berat
2. Onufri Museum
3. The saint Trinity Church from outside
4. Saint George Church from outside
5. Saint Nicolas Church from outside

After we continue with the lower part of Berat were we will visit:
1. The Mangalem neighborhood
2. The Gorica Bridge
3. The Gorica Neighborhood
4. The Kings Mosque from outside
5. The medieval complex
6. The Bachelor mosque
18:30 – After the visit we drive to the hotel.
20:00 – Dinner at the hotel. Overnight in Berat.

Day 4: Berat – Apollonia (Archeological park) – Saranda.
08:00 – After breakfast at the hotel we drive towards Apollonia. The ruined city of Apollonia was founded by the Corinthians colonist around 600BC. It was then a port, and for centuries its importance rivaled that of Epidamnus. Apollonia later became a free Roman city after it sided with Julius Caesar during the war against Pompey. In late antiquity, the Vjosa River shifted course far to the south and Apollonia lost its harbor. Now it stands, isolated and rather forlorn, on a hill overlooking the fertile Muzeqe plain. In Apollonia we will visit:
1. The Museum
2. The church of Virgin Mary
3. Necropolises
4. The ancient Monastery
5. The Library
6. The Temple
7. The City Hall
8. The Theatre

10:30 – After the visit of Apollonia we drive towards Saranda through the City of Vlora and through the Pass of Llogara (National Park).

11:30 – Arrival in the City of Vlora and a short guide from the buss. Vlora is the city where the Albanian independence was proclaimed in 28/11/1912, the city with a typical Mediterranean climate and where the Adriatic and Ionian Sea divide. We continue towards Saranda through the National Park of Llogara with the highest pick of 1000 meters from the sea level overlooking the Albanian Riviera. The road until Saranda is one of the most beautiful picturesque views of Albania and of course the photo stops will be very often because they are worth taking it.

13:00 – Arrival at the highest pick of the Llogara pass and that’s were we will have lunch overlooking the Ionian Sea.
14:30 – After lunch we continue towards Saranda through the magnificent view.
15:30 – We will visit the wonderful Ali Pasha Castle on the Ionian coast.
The castle was built around the 18th century as a gift to his second wife.
17:30 – Arrival in Saranda and check in at the hotel.
19:30 – Dinner in a traditional restaurant. Overnight in Saranda.

Day 5: Saranda – Gjirokastra (UNESCO)

09:00 – After breakfast at the hotel we will drive towards the ancient city of Butrint (UNESCO).
It is almost impossible not to like Butrint. Butrint is so complex and it dates 2500 years before.
The peaceful atmosphere, the eucalyptus trees, and the crickets chirping in amongst the ruins will make an unforgettable emotion.

In Butrint we will visit:
1. The Theatre
2. The ruins of Byzantine Church
3. The Roman bath-house
4. The Baptistery
5. The Basilica
6. The Lion Gate
7. The Scaean Gate
8. The Venetian Tower
9. The Triconch Palace.

12:30 – After the visit of Butrint we drive towards Gjirokastra.
13:00 – We will visit the famous “Blue Eye Spring”.
This unusual underwater spring sits under the shadow of the tree, coming from a 45 meter deep hole. The spring has makes a blue mark in the middle that make it looks like an eye.
14:30 – Arrival in Gjirokastra and lunch in a local restaurant.
Afternoon is free at leisure.
20:00 – Dinner at the hotel.

Day 6: Gjirokastra(UNESCO) – Tirana

08:30 – After breakfast at the hotel we start with the Sightseeing of Gjirokastra.
The austere and the beautiful town of Gjirokastra bagan to spread downhill from its castle in the 13th century. Gjirokastra is a perfect preserved ottoman town and it’s known also as the Silver City.

In Gjirokastra we will visit:
1. The Castle of Gjirokastra (we will go by taxi)
2. The weapon museum
3. The Ethnographical museum
4. The old bazaar
5. A typical ottoman house.

11:30 – After the Sightseeing of Gjirokastra we drive towards Tirana.
14:00 – Lunch in a typical restaurant right next to the “Monastery of Ardenica”.
15:30- Visit of the Monastery of Ardenica.
16:00- Departure to Tirana
18:00 – Arrival in Tirana and check in at the hotel
20:00 - Dinner at the hotel.

Day 7: Tirana – Airport. After breakfast meet with our English speaking guide and drive to the airport.

Notes:
Airfare is not included in the tour price.

- The minimum cost of the tour is calculated on BB bases, and the maximum cost is Full board.
- Land transport is included and accomodation in three and four star hotels.
- Lunches are in traditional restaurants and English-speaking guide throughout the program.

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