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Western Balkan Explorer Tour “Yellow Route”

Mention the Balkans to anyone and it can conjure up a plethora of images - flashpoint of the First World War, the atrocities of the recent civil war, Tito’s and Hoxha’s Communist dictatorships. Look beyond these clichéd stereotypes on our one week trip through three Western Balkan countries – Albania, Kosova and North Macedonia. Explore the crossroads of Europe’s East and West mosaic to cultures inherited in millenniums starting from Illyrians (Albanians), Romans, Byzantines, Slavic, and Ottoman inheritance, in fascinating historical cities, as well as some of the best landscapes in Europe. Western Balkan Explorer trip is a unique experience for those people who want to discover, enjoy and learn better those small different countries in language, religion and history, but very similar in habits, traditions, and hospitality.

per adult from

$1,543

AUD

Duration

8 days

Pickup

Hotel pickup available

Voucher

Mobile ticket

Select Date and Travellers

No tour options available.

  • What's included :
    • 7x Breakfast
    • 1x Lunch
    • Accommodation included: 7 nights
    • Hotel: Accommodation 3* hotels on double occupancy in good locations of respective cities/places.
    • Transportation: Air Conditioned modern van/minibus/bus and other transportation listed in itinerary.
    • Guide: Professional bilingual English, speaking tour guide/leader, etc
    What's excluded :
    • Admission/entry Fees.
    • Travel insurance, visa fees (if applicable)
    • Any charges for additional itinerary are not listed in itinerary.
    • A mandatory service fee for tour guide/bus driver (min. 5-7 Euro /day per person).
    • Excess baggage charges from Airlines.
    • Personal expenses such as room service, telephone, laundry service charges.
    • Losses or additional expenses.
    • Lunch and Dinner charges. (if applicable)
    • Everything not mentioned in “Inclusions”.
    • Entry/Admission - Visoki Decani Monastery
    • Entry/Admission - Marble Cave
    • Entry/Admission - Apollonia Archaeological Park
    • Entry/Admission - Ardenica Monastery

  • Day 1: Tirana - Kruja – Lezha – Shkoder . (101 km, 2h 05 min).

    Stop At: Tirana, Tirana, Tirana County
    Start the day 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.
    Duration: 2 hours

    Stop At: Kruje, Kruje, Durres County
    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.
    Duration: 2 hours

    Stop At: Lezhe, Lezhe, Lezhe County
    Later we continue to Lezha in the north west 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 a 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.
    Duration: 2 hours

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    • Lunch
    Accommodation included: Overnight Hotel Tradita or similar.

    Day 2: Koman Lake – Junik - Gjakova - Prizren (122 km, 4h 35 min); + 2.5 hrs boat trip in Koman Lake.

    Stop At: Koman, Koman, Shkoder County
    Today we journey from Shkoder to Valbona via 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.
    Duration: 2 hours

    Stop At: Junik
    After the completion of this memorable leg of the journey we continue to 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.
    Duration: 2 hours

    Stop At: Gjakova, Gjakova
    Then continue to Gjakova which lies on the banks of the River Erenik. Visit its main sites including the old bazaar and clock tower.
    Duration: 2 hours

    Stop At: Prizren, Prizren
    Then 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 (more than 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.
    Duration: 2 hours

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    Accommodation included: Overnight at Hotel Prizren or similar.

    Day 3: Monastery of Decan (UNESCO) - Peja - Pristine. (295 km, 3h 50 min)

    Stop At: Visoki Decani Monastery, Rruga Sali Ceku the Prokletije Mountains, Decan 51000 Kosovo
    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.
    Duration: 2 hours

    Stop At: Peja
    After arriving in 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.
    Duration: 2 hours

    Stop At: Pristina, Pristina
    We continue 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 time city that was once one of the most powerful in the Balkans. Later we visited the spectacular Gracanica Monastery, one of Kosovo’s most beautiful sites and containing some impressive frescoes.
    Duration: 2 hours

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    Accommodation included: Overnight Begolli Hotel or similar.

    Day 4: Gadime Cave - Skopje. (97 km, 1h 45 min)

    Stop At: Marble Cave, Prishtine _ Ferizaj Road, Pristina Kosovo
    We continue to Macedonia stopping first at Gadime Cave.
    Duration: 1 hour

    Stop At: Skopje, Skopje, Skopje Region
    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.
    Duration: 4 hours

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    Accommodation included: Overnight at hotel Aristocrat, or similar.

    Day 5: Tetovo - Ohrid (UNESCO) (145 km, 2h 45 min)

    Stop At: Tetovo, Tetovo, Polog Region
    Continue to Tetova, an important city of Macedonia where we visit its castle and old mosque.
    Duration: 2 hours

    Stop At: Ohrid, Ohrid, Southwestern Region
    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 theater.
    Duration: 2 hours

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    Accommodation included: Overnight at hotel Villa Sofia or similar.

    Day 6: Elbasan - Berat (UNESCO) (160 km, 3h 20 min)

    Stop At: Elbasan, Elbasan, Elbasan County
    After breakfast we cross the border to Albania, where we visit Elbasan. It was a very old and important city in the Ancient Via Egnatia Road that used to connect Durres to Thessaloniki and Istanbul. We visit the old town, castle, church, mosque, etc.
    Duration: 2 hours

    Stop At: Berat, Berat, Berat County
    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.
    Duration: 2 hours

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    Accommodation included: Overnight Hotel Osumi or similar.

    Day 7: Apollonia (UNESCO candidate) - Ardenica Monastery - Durres (UNESCO candidate) – Tirana. (212 km, 3h 55 min).

    Stop At: Apollonia Archaeological Park, Pojan Albania
    After breakfast drive to Apolonia. Visit the ancient city of Apollonia, dating back to the 6th century BC. Then continue to visit Ardenica Monastery.
    Duration: 2 hours

    Stop At: Ardenica Monastery, Ardenice Albania
    Ardenica Monastery.
    Duration: 1 hour

    Stop At: Durres, Durres, Durres County
    Afterward, continue to Durres. This port city has the largest ancient amphitheater in the region (20,000 seats), dating back to the beginning of 2nd century built during Trajan Emperor rule. Visit to an archeological museum, amphitheater, roman Baths, Byzantine Bazar. Drive back to Tirana for our final night where you will enjoy a farewell dinner with traditional food.
    Duration: 2 hours

    Meals included:
    • Breakfast
    Accommodation included: Overnight Hotel Kruja or similar.

    Day 8: Day 8: (Optional): Change to continue to successive tour(s): Blue, Silver or Red loops/circuits.

    Pass By: Europe, Europe
    Day 8: (Optional): Change to continue to successive tour(s): Blue, Silver or Red loops/circuits.

    No meals included on this day.
    No accommodation included on this day.
  • Departure Point :
    Traveler pickup is offeredAirports
    • Rinas Airport, Tirana Albania
    Return Detail :
    -
    Hotel Pickup :
    • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
    • Wheelchair accessible
    • Stroller accessible
    • Service animals allowed
    • Near public transportation
    • Infants must sit on laps
    • Transportation is wheelchair accessible
    • Surfaces are wheelchair accessible
    • Most travelers can participate
    • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund
    • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund
    • This is a private tour/activity. Only your group will participate
  • You can present either a paper or an electronic voucher for this activity.
  • All sales are final and incur 100% cancellation penalties.

Language

English

Age Req.

-

Fitness Req.

None

Group Size

15

Organised by Albania Explorer

Activity ID: V-34296P20

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