Excursion in Tirana. Take a chance to get to know two beautiful cities in Albania: Shkoder (Skadar or Scutari) and Tirana. Shkoder provides to the visitors rich collection of historical and cultural objects while Tirana being the capital has something to offer for everyone.
Albania is a country of friendly people, fascinating Ottoman cities teeming with history, magnificent mountain scenery and charming villages.
It is also a country which was isolated for more than fifty years! On this excursion you can see its beauty and some of world famous 720.000 bunkers spread around this country.
The excursion departs from your hotel, we will drive along the edge of the mountain and spot a small island connected to the mainland by a narrow road. This is famous Sveti Stefan Island, bursting with red-roofed buildings. Here we will make a brief photo break.
We will drive along magnificent coast of Montenegro and stunning scenery of the mountain range near towns Petrovac, Sutomore and Bar.
The road after city of Bar then veered up away from the coast on quiet back roads. A steady climb, revealing good views back into Bar and up into the surrounding mountains.
Although the roads here are not too great, the views are wonderful.
The Albanian border is about a 45 minute drive from Bar, on acceptable roads.
After passport control we will take a break at the restaurant which is located right next to border crossing point between Albania and Montenegro. The small complex is compound of a restaurant and a souvenirs shop, where you can find interesting products to remember your stay in Albania.
Located in the heart of Adriatic and Ionian Sea, Albania is fast became one of the world’s most interesting getaway. Still relatively unspoiled by globalization, tourists will notice an inspiring mixture of civilizations and cultures – making this European country truly unique.
From the moment you cross the border, Albania feels different to Montenegro. The bright colours of houses and mosques, poor shacks and luxury home, Mercedes vehicles all types and year of production and occasional horse and donkeys…Yes, Albania is a country of contrasts.
Around twenty minutes away from the border, we are coming in Shkoder, one of the oldest cities in the south of Europe, surrounded by Skadar lake, and two rivers – Bojana and Drim. The history of the fortress Rozafa, which dominates the city, has lasted for over two thousand years.
On the way to the city center by coach, various buildings will show you two face of city – traditional and modern one.
This capital of Shkoder district is located at the shore of Skadar Lake and is famous for bazaars and mosques which give Shkoder oriental appearance.
With the largest mosque in the Balkans there are Catholic cathedral and Orthodox church.
Shkoder is very proud of the monument of Mother Teresa – the nun is portrayed with hands crossed on her chest as a symbol of her faith that she carried throughout her life. Albanians are very proud that their country gave the World this Saint person!
Upon arrival we will walk by the most popular pedestrian street „Kole Idromeno“ (Pjaca), which has been preserved in the old style. It contains many bars and restaurants with terraces, flowers and fancy shops.
Street trade is well-developed, on the streets in the center you can buy all kinds of stuff.
We will catch a little of the Shkodra bazaar atmosphere in the streets, where people still sell everything under the sun: fresh fruit and vegetables, tobacco, chickens, wedding dresses, shoes, screws, spare parts, curtains, glasses…
After the sightseeing we’ll leave Skadar and drive towards 100 km distant capital Tirana through Lezhe city where is buried famous albanian hero Skanderbeg.
Without stopping in Lezhe we continue our journey to 42 kilometers distant Tirana which is also known as the “City of Colors”.
Why? No matter where you go through Tirana you will have the chance to see the colorful buildings.
The Mayor of the city, Edi Rama did not want gray post-communist city so buildings are painted in vivid colors of the rainbow.
One of the last-forgotten European cities, little known Tirana has undergone a renaissance. Understanding the importance of tourism, skilful Albanians arrange their capital city with vision and energy.
On the way through the city center by coach, various buildings will show you face of this modern city.
Tirana is relatively a new city founded in 1614 by Sulejman Pasha Bargjini. The city began to grow at the beginning of the 18 century, but it remained an unimportant town until it was proclaimed Albania’s capital in 1920. It wasn’t until the late 1920 when Italian influence became quite strong that the center of the city took the appearance of a capital city.
Italian planners and architects build the main square named after the national hero Skanderbeg, the huge boulevard, ministry buildings, national bank and the town hall.
Just in the center, at Scanderbeg Square, there is the Clock Tower (35 m high) built in 1830, The National Opera and Ballet Theatre, the National Library and the National Historical Museum.
One building especially attracts the attention of visitors – it’s a Pyramid. Designed by Enver Hoxha’s daughter and son-in-law and completed in 1988, this unattractive building was formerly the Enver Hoxha Museum and more recently a convention centre and nightclub. Today, covered in graffiti it’s sometimes open for temporary exhibits.
Today Tirana is not only the most populated city in Albania than also the commercial and manufacturing center of the country, with about half of all Albania companies and three-quarters of foreign-owned enterprises.
An area called “Blloku” situated in the middle of vegetation where the villas of the communist elite used to be, has become the hotspot of nightlife in the capital with trendy bars, pubs, cafes and nightclubs.
One of the tallest building in Tirana, the Sky Tower, is the best place inside the city to overlook the Tirana’s city skyline. The rotating restaurant 360 degrees of your sight on the top floor offers a great view of the city and surrounding mountains.
Once a Ottoman settlement, then a drab communist time, today Tirana hums with vitality once more. Modern boutiques, famous restaurants, Turkish bazaars, wide boulevards, newly built Orthodox church and freshly renovated mosque attract attention of visitors.
A wonderful and exciting opportunity to visit and experience somewhere and something new…Albania is waiting to be discovered.
Price: From 40,00 € per person
Price includes: Bus transport, guide, fees in Albania.
Map of Excursion Albania