15 days / 14 nights

HIDDEN EUROPE TOUR

Inclusions

meals
accomodation
activities
transfer
sightseeing

Themes

Honeymoon
Adventure
Family
Summer

Snapshot

Skanderbeg square the Mosque of Ethem bey and old bazaar, Cathedral. The Famous Kullat e Junikut, Clock Tower, the Muedieval church houses some of the most preserved fresco decoration in the Balkans and the grounds are also a delight. The Orthodox church and the Carshi Mosque, the Spectacular Gracanica Monastery. The Old Ottoman market, the Monastery of Sveti spas and the ancient Kale fortress. Visting the 11th century church of st. Sofia as well as the Roman amphitheater. The Sveti Maum Monastery visit original 18th century orthobox churches and the Museum of Medieval art. The Historic town of Korce and the local Museum and visit the ancient city of Apollonia.

Inclusions

  • 3-4 star Hotel
  • Arrival airport transfer
  • Guide
  • Departure airport transfer
  • Bed and breakfast

Exclusions

  • Airport taxes
  • Visa fees
  • Travel insurance
  • Drinks
  • Visa

Itinerary

Day 1
Tirana – Airport transfer
Arrive in Tirana and transfer to your hotel. Depending on when you arrive there may be time to explore the city. Overnight in Tirana
Day 2
Tirana - Kruja – Lezha – Shkoder
Start the day of exploring Albania’s capital. We visit Skanderbeg Square, dedicated to Albania’s national hero, the Mosque of Ethem Bey, one of the oldest buildings in Tirana, and the Archaeological Museum among other sites. We then head to Kruja, one of Albania’s most important towns due to the part it played in resistance against the Ottomans. Visit the Skanderbeg Museum and castle as well as the old bazaar. Today lunch will be included and the opportunity to eat some traditional food in Kruja. Later we continue to Lezha in the northwest of the country where we visit the mausoleum of Skanderbeg and the castle before heading to Shkoder. Shkoder is one of the oldest cities in the Balkans and was once the capital of the Illyrian state. We visit its old bazaar, cathedral, and mosque before heading to Rozafa castle for spectacular views of the city, lake and the surrounding mountains. Overnight in Shkoder. Breakfast and Lunch are included.
Day 3
Koman Lake –Junik - Gjakova – Rahovec Vinery - Prizren
Today we journey from Shkoder to Koman Lake. The 2 hour trip on Lake Komani was called “One of the Great Boat Trips of the World” by the Bradt Guide, and certainly, the scenery is stunning. The Drin River was flooded along part of its most mountainous passage to create the lakes in this region. The journey takes you along glassy clear water, twisting and turning through narrow passes and past silent mountain peaks. We cross the border into Kosovo and drive to Junik where we visit the famous Kullat e Junikut (Junik Tower). The towers are castle-like houses with a special architecture built in white rock, where Albanians have for centuries sheltered to survive wars and conflicts. Then continue to Gjakova which lies on the banks of the River Erenik. Visit its main sites including the old bazaar and clock tower, and then continue Rahovec Vinery where you will have the option to taste some wine. Afterward continue to the city of Prizren, probably the most attractive town in Kosovo with superbly preserved buildings from the Ottoman era. We visit the castle which is one of the oldest in the Balkans (almost 3 millenniums), built to protect the city from attacks, the ornate Bajrakli Mosque and the old Turkish Hammam among other sights. Prizren is an absolute highlight of any visit to Kosovo and to see the old houses of the old town in low light as the sun sets is a delight. Overnight in Prizren. Breakfast is included.
Day 4
Monastery of Decan (UNESCO) - Peja - Boge
We then continue to the Monastery of Decan (UNESCO). The medieval church houses some of the most preserved fresco decoration in the Balkans and the grounds are also a delight. After arrival into Peje we explore the Ottoman Empire time sites of the town including the Haxhi Beut Mosque and the old house of Jashar Pasha as well as the Sheremet Tower and the old bazaar. We continue to Bogë, where we have a short stop at Patriarchana of Peja (13th Century) part of (UNESCO) sites in the Rugova Valley, one of the most beautiful valleys in the region. On arrival at the hotel, you will have the chance to take a walk amidst impressive scenery, and a possibility for walking. Overnight in Bogë. Breakfast is included.
Day 5
Pristina
Drive to Pristina. Explore the city visiting its main sites such as the Orthodox Church and the Carshi Mosque, dating back to the early 15th century. We then head to the ruins of Ulpiana, an ancient Roman city that was once one of the most powerful in the Balkans. Later we visit the spectacular Gracanica Monastery, one of Kosovo’s most beautiful sites and containing some impressive frescoes. Overnight in Pristina. Breakfast is included.
Day 6
Skopje
We continue to Macedonia stopping first at Gadime Cave. We cross the border and head to its capital Skopje. Upon arrival, we visit some of the most important parts of the town, including the old Ottoman market, the monastery of Sveti Spas and the ancient Kale Fortress which dates back to Illyrian and Roman times. Overnight in Skopje. Breakfast is included.
Day 7
Tetova - Ohrid (UNESCO)
After breakfast continue to Mavrovo National Park, the biggest in Macedonia covering 73,000 hectares. We follow the Radika River along the way and stop at monasteries and churches en route. Then drive to the beautiful town of Ohrid, designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Explore its mixture of western and oriental architecture including the Orthodox Cathedral, the 11th century church of St Sofia as well as the Roman amphitheater. Overnight in Ohrid. Breakfast is included.
Day 8
Ohrid. (Bitola - optional)
Leisure day in Ohrid. (Optional boat tour in Horid lake, or a day trip to Bitola city, and visit Eraklea ancient site). Return to Ohrid. Overnight in Ohrid.  Breakfast is included.
Day 9
Voskopoje - Korce
Before we cross back into Albania, we visit the Sveti Naum Monastery, a beautiful site with impressive views of Lake Ohrid across to Albania. Then continue to the ancient village of Voskopoja very famous for its monasteries, and sits 1,150 meters above sea-level and is a perfect place for hiking and walking. Visit original 18th-century Orthodox churches, complete with frescos (to include: St. Nicholas, St. Thanasius, and St. Maria) Visit the Monastery of St. John the Baptist (Shen Prodhom), with an original structure from the 15th century. After lunch continues to the historic town of Korce. Visit the Museum of Medieval Art with the richest icon archive in all Europe; The First Albanian School; Traditional Old Bazaar; Cathedral(1992); Mosque of Ilyaz Bey Mirahori (1484), and The Old Bazaar. Overnight in Korce.  Breakfast and Dinner are included.
Day 10
Gjirokastra (UNESCO)
Cross back into Albania, visiting the historic town of Korce. We then take an amazing drive though spectacular scenery to Gjirokastra. The road is bumpy in parts but the views of this remote part of Albania are incredible. At Gjirokastra we visit the local museum, housed in the building in which the former communist dictator Enver Hoxha was born, as well as the pre-Ottoman era citadel which affords spectacular views and houses an impressive range of artillery and also bizarrely a reconnaissance US Air Force plane that was forced to land after losing its way in the 1950’s. Gjirokastra is a pretty town with traditional houses and cobbled streets spilling down the sides of the mountain. Overnight in Gjirokastra. Breakfast is included.
Day 11
Butrint (UNESCO) – Saranda
On the way to Saranda we shall enjoy a short stop at Syri i Kalter (Blue Eye National park). Visit the ancient city of Butrint, Albania’s most important archaeological site and given special status by UNESCO. Spend time exploring this impressive site with the added bonus of it being situated in a beautiful natural setting. The walls, basilica, acropolis, and theatre at Butrint are truly impressive. We then drive to Saranda on the coast. Overnight in Saranda. Breakfast is included.
Day 12
Himara – Vlora
Head north along a stunning coastline, stopping at Porto Palermo to visit the castle of Ali Pasha on the way. Drive through mountains over the Llogara Pass (1020m above sea level) and continue to Vlora, on the ‘Albanian Riviera’. Tonight you will enjoy a delicious fish dinner at a restaurant on the beach. Overnight in Vlora.  Breakfast and Dinner are included.
Day 13
Apollonia (UNESCO candidate) – Berat (UNESCO)
Visit the ancient city of Apollonia, dating back to the 6th century BC. We then drive to Berat, one of the oldest inhabited regions of Albania and with a superbly preserved historic centre that has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We visit its citadel which contains old churches, mosques, and museums. Overnight in Berat. Breakfast is included.
Day 14
Durres – Tirana
After breakfast drive to Durres. This port city has the largest Roman amphitheater (20,000 seats) in the Balkan region, dating back to the beginning of 2nd century which we will visit and Archeological museum. Drive back to Tirana for our final night where you will enjoy a farewell dinner with traditional food. Overnight in Tirana. Breakfast is included.
Day 15
Departure –Tirana Airport
Transfer to the airport for your flight home. Breakfast is included.

Accomodations

3 STAR
Gjirokaster Hotel or Similar, Magra Austria Hotel or Similar or similar
4 STAR
Begolli Hotel or Similar, Brilant Hotel or Similar, Centrum Hotel or Similar, Colossea Hotel or Similar, Hotel Partner or Similar, Hotel Villa St. Sofija or Similar, Life Gallery Hotel or Similar, Opera House Hotel or Similar, Te Stela Hotelor Similar, White City Hotel or Similar or similar

Policies

  • Above rates are subject to availability.
  • Cancellation charges as per company policy.
  • The above rates are subject to change in case of travel during the festive season
  • In case we are not able to provide the same hotels as mentioned, then we shall provide similar alternate properties, change in the cost if any will be advised.
  • In case of Political Unrest, bad weather or sudden breakdown of the vessel we may shift guest to alternative govt ferry and no refund will be entertained during that situation.
  • Our Executive may change your itinerary depending on the weather condition and ferry availability same will be update to you daily basis.

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