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From Sunrise to Sunset with a Bike in Albania

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Rent a bike and have a magical tour all over Albania from city to city. Wake up with the sun rise of Durres and sleep with the sunset of Berat.

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Overview

Holiday style:

 


Rent a bike and have a magical tour all over Albania from city to city. Wake up with the sun rise of Durres and sleep with the sunset of Berat. You will be amazed from the view and you will explore it better with a bike rather than a car. Accomodations will be provided in hotels.

 

 

         

 

 

Short description:

 


 

DURATION: 11 Days
TRIP CODE: D11-FSS
GROUP SIZE: 4-12(max)
MIN AGE: 15 Years old
MAX ALTITUDE: 2000m
ACCOMODATION: Hotel x 11 nts
MEALS: 10 breakfasts 10 lunches and 10 dinners
DEPARTS: June until September
JOINING POINT: Tirana Airport
IMPORTANT: Make sure  your chosen holiday is guaranteed to run before you purchase your air tickets and make any other travel arrangements

 

Brief Itinerary: 

 


 

DAY 1
Airport-Tirane
Time:21 min
Distance: 17,1 km


DAY 2
Tirane-Pogradec
Time: 2h 21m
Distance:128km


DAY 3
Pogradec-Korce
Time: 42min
Distance:39km


DAY 4
Korce-Germenj
Time: 1h 33min
Distance:72km


DAY 5
Germenj-Permet
Time: 1h 40min
Distance:63km


DAY 6
Permet-Gjirokaster
Time: 1h 10m
Distance:61km


DAY 7
Gjirokaster-Sarande
Time: 1h 30m
Distance: 62km


DAY 8
Sarande-Himare
Time:5h 37m
Distance:242km


DAY 9
Himare-Vlore
Time: 3h 5m
Distance:101km


DAY 10
Vlore-Tirane
Time:2h 36m
Distance:153km


DAY 11
Tirane-Airport
Time: 21 min
Distance: 17,1 km

 

Product Description

Details

DAY 1 - Tirane

We meet in Tirana. Depending on when you arrive, hopefully you can check out the town. There is plenty to see like: The Clock Tower next to the Et'hemBey Mosque government buildings, The Tabakëve and Terzive bridges,The Palace of Culture,The monument to Mother Albania, The Palace of Congress, and President Resident, all this wonderful buildings, extended, along the Bulevard Deshmoret e Kombit, The Bulevard of Albanian History.We’ll have e welcome dinner and a trip briefing. 
Overnight in Tirana.

 

DAY 2 - Pogradec

We will transfer out of Tirana to avoid a busy road and then bike the descent towards the northern end of Lake Ohrid. Transfer to Pogradec (distance: 75 mi. / 120 km / 2 h), on the shores of Ohrid Lake. This is one of Europe’s oldest and deepest lakes, and is valued by biologists for its unique flora and fauna. Once equipped and fitted with our bikes we start cycling from lake Ohrid, climbing to an elevated plateau with some great views over the blue waters of this splendid lake surrounded by mountains. In the afternoon, you can choose between relaxing at the beach in front of the hotel or crossing over to Macedonia by bike and to visit the monastery of St.Naum. The ride finishes in Tushemisht as the sun sets over the ancient waters of Ohrid. 
Overnight in Tushemisht.

 

DAY 3 - Korce

Today’s ride begins with a climb out of the lake valley to the mountain-flanked plateau above. You will have some warm-up riding before the big hill, and if it doesn’t appeal to you, the van is always available to boost you to the top. After pulling yourself away from the gorgeous views of the valley below, the ride continues through a colourful patchwork of lost-in-time farmland on wonderfully empty rural roads. After a day on the road make sure not to miss the bustling markets of the mountain city of Korcë, your destination for the night.
Overvnight Korca.

 

DAY 4 - Germenje

Today is a long hilly day but you’ll barely notice as you soak up the stunning mountain scenery. Leave behind the agricultural plateau of Korce, climbing steadily into the border mountains through a landscape of barren rock interspersed with wild flowers. Numerous cols and valleys lie ahead, climbing into the heart of the Grammoz Mountains . Your ride will conclude after summiting the Barmash Pass (1159m/ 3800ft) and descending into a pine-covered valley, where you will spend the night in the peaceful solitude of the lush mountains. It is picturesque place with only nature around us. We will have trout for dinner. 
Overnight in Sotire.
(44 miles/71 km; elevation gain: 3842 ft/1171 m)

 
DAY 5 - Permet

Again you will begin the day with a climb, but the descent (~1000m/3280ft over 50km/31mi) will make up for it. Descending through majestic gorges surrounding the gentle town of Leskovik, all the way to Cashovë, the hardest decision you’ll have is whether to pull over and gape at the jaw-dropping scenery or enjoy the ride all the way to the bottom! We continue down to Cashove and then follow the corniche route high above the river to Benje. After some Albania’s delicacies for lunch on the town Benje, you will have the chance to refresh at the thermal springs nearby. We follow the wonderful cliff road high above the river to Permet, situated on a bluff above the river. 
Overnight in Permet.

 
DAY 6 - Gjirokaster

Today's ride is fairly flat without any sharp climbs as we head for one of Albania's most scenic destinations A short but dramatic drive of about one hour will bring us to the historic town of Gjirokastër, another UNESCO Heritage site that is home to some truly stunning Ottoman architecture. Gjirokastër is magnificently set between the towering Gjerë Mountains and the Drino River, providing us with a beautifully scenic arrival by vehicle from Permet as we pass through the Drino Valley and the Kelcyra Gorge. The 'City of 1000 Steps', Gjirokaster, has a charming bazaar area with Ottoman houses and small shops facing narrow cobbled streets.
Overnight in Gjorokastër.
(45 miles/70 km; elevation gain: 1352ft/412 m)

 

DAY 7 - Sarande

Today’s ride takes you from the interior mountains to the beautiful coast of the Ionian Sea. A great day of cycling ahead as we descend through the scenic countryside to Saranda. We have a short section on the main road before a healthy climb and a nice descent on our way to Saranda, the southernmost city on the Ionian coast. We have an undulating ride on some backroads as we make our way to a small ferry that takes us over to Butrint, a Unesco World Heritage Site. This historically relevant site was once both a Greek colony, and a Roman city and bishopric. You will see the ruins of an amphitheatre built in the 3rd century, which would once have been able to hold 1500 people. After exploring the ruins of Butrint the ride continues along the scenic Albanian Rivera before arriving in Sarandë, a maritime city perched between lofty mountains and the tropical sea.
Overnight Saranda.
(45 miles/70 km; elevation gain: 1722ft/525 m)

 

DAY 8 - Himare

We ride North out of Saranda to a rocky plateau. It is a roller coaster of a ride today, ascending and descending as the sun burns off the morning mist. Expect a hilly day today as you follow the stunningly picturesque coast, with endless seascapes on your left, and lofty mountains on your right. You will enjoy a long decent at the end of the day as you come to the seaside town of Himara. Although this town is renowned as a favourite destination in Albania due to the proximity to beautiful sandy beaches, you will find that it is still relatively relaxed and peaceful. 
Overnight in Himare.
(32 miles/52 km; elevation gain: 3491 ft/1064 m)

 

DAY 9 - Vlore

Today’s ride is not only the most challenging but also the most spectacular in Albania. We go through Dhermi and then you will gradually climb from sea level up to 1,000m through forests, gorges and hairpin bends, through the intimidating llogara pass. It is not steep, but you can see almost the entire climb in front of you and it does seem to go on and on. There are fantastic views during the climb of everything that you have left behind. After lunch in the beautiful national park of Llogara an adrenaline pumping descent puts you back on the coast along winding roads to Vlorë, a popular resort town, and your destination for the night.
Overnight Vlore.
(39 miles/63 km; elevation gain: 5439 ft/1658 m)

 
DAY 10 - Tirane

Today we will transfer to Berat, another UNESCO site, and one of the country’s oldest towns, with settlements dating back as far as 2000BC! You may visit the Onufri Iconographic Museum located in the church of St. Mary inside Berat Castle. The museum houses an extraordinary collection of religious images and is named after one of the most important icon painters of the 16th century, whose work shows clear post-Byzantine and Venetian influences. Have lunch and after this we will transfer back to Tirana . 
Overnight in Tirana.

 

DAY 11 - Departure

Wake up in the morning, have breakfast, and then free time to prepare for the departure. we will transfer you to Mother Teresa Airport or to your hotel in Tirana, in case you have extended your stay.

Dates and Prices

WHAT'S INCLUDED AND NOT INCLUDED

 


What's included
* English-speaking local guide
* Group airport transfers
* All meals throughout the holiday
* All land transport required by the itinerary
* National park entrance fees
* All excursions mentioned in the itinerary.

 

What's not included
* Travel insurance
* Visas
* Airport taxes
* Airport transfers other than group transfers
* Extra activities and excursions
* Tips for local staff
* Miscellaneous personal expenditure

 

SUPPLEMENTS

 


Rooming on tour & Single Room Option (Not applicable to self-guided holidays).
Most group tours are based on customers sharing twin-bedded rooms. If you book as an individual, you will be roomed with someone of the same gender. However, on many tours we offer the opportunity to pay a supplement to pre-book a single room. On some of these tours a single room will be provided at some of the night-stops but for logistical reasons not all. Individual Trip Notes clarify this. If, for whatever reason, we are unable to provide a single room as outlined in the Trip Notes, we will refund a proportion of the supplement paid to us for the Single Room Option.

 

Where you are able to purchase a single room, the price does not necessarily guarantee you a single room for every night of the tour.
All of our group tours are planned and operated on a twin-share basis, meaning that the standard cost is based either on individual travelers sharing accommodation with another group member of the same sex, or people who book together sharing accommodation.

 

Please refer to the tour notes where the single room option availability is detailed on a night by night basis for this tour, and the price for the available nights is detailed on the dates & prices tab by departure date.
For Self-Guided trips the Single Room supplement offers the option of a single room each and is charged per person. The Single Room supplement also applies to the third person in a party of three that will be accommodated in a single room.

 

 

PRE POST TOUR SERVICE

 


Transfers
If you need a pre tour transfer from the airport to the hotel, or the other way around Post tour transfer, from the hotel to the airport, please let us know sending by email your request. After we will make all the arrangement for you.

 

Accommodations
If your flight comes days in advance, or you want to stay longer than other participants of your tour, we can arrange the accommodation for you. If you are interested please send us a request to the follow email address: info@ivisitalbania.com

 

DATA

 


Please send us an email at info@ivisitalbania.com, asking for availability.



Participants & Transit
I Visit Albania consciously chooses to travel in small groups. For this trip, the maximum 16 participants. We guarantee a trip based on the minimum number of permanent participants. This destination is that a minimum of 6 participants. A journey can already with fewer participants are guaranteed. The minimum age for these trips is 18 years.

 

100% No Surcharge Guarantee
Once booked and confirmed we will guarantee the price will not increase, whatever the circumstances. You will not be approached to pay fuel surcharges unlike the vast majority of other adventure tour operators.

 

Tour Prices
Tour prices shown on this website are a guide only. For flight-inclusive group tours the selling price at the time you book your holiday could be different to that shown here, due to current flight availability. Please refer to the trip notes for details of what is included in the cost.

 

Tour Durations
The tour duration shown above is based on the Land Only length of the tour. Please be aware that the flight inclusive duration of the tour may be longer.

 

Tour Itineraries
Please be aware that the specific itinerary on some of our tours may differ depending on departure date. Please check the relevant trip notes for the most up-to-date information regarding the trip itinerary.

 

Child Prices
Child prices applicable for ages 11 and under at time of travel. (Not applicable to self-guided holidays as these are currently sold to adults only).

 

Price Changes
Any changes to prices will be kept updated on this web page, in accordance with above.

Tour Information

ACCOMMODATION

 


During this trip we stay in different types of accommodation which are always attractive and nicely situated. We stay mostly in small hotels.
Standard - Our mid-range accommodation offers a good level of service often with other amenities such as a restaurant, bar, garden or swimming pool. Generally rooms will be comfortable with en-suite facilities.
Accommodation and service levels in Albania are generally very good. We try to use smaller, family-run hotels and pensions that might not offer the same luxuries as larger chain-style hotels, but they do provide a warm welcome, a comfortable place to stay and the chance to gain a better understanding of local life.

 

ROOM LAYOUT AND SINGLE

 


* If you go, you do not pay extra fee for traveling alone. We or assume that you are sharing a room (or tent if applicable) with a fellow traveler of the same gender. If you prefer to have your own room, you can for € xxxxx, - additional books a single room.
* If you travel as a couple, share together a room (or tent). You can choose between a 'twin' or a 'double'. A twin room has two twin beds; one has a double bed. Some hotels only have twin rooms and sometimes all doubles have been forgiven so you still have two twin beds.
* If you travel with three of them, two people sharing a double or 'twin' room (or tent) and one participant is assigned to a twin room (or tent) with another fellow traveler of the same gender. If you prefer to have your own room, you can for € xxxxxx, - additional books a single room.

When making the reservation you can specify what kind of room layout you desire.

 

 

BUDGET INFO

 


You will need some extra money to cover meals and drinks not included in the tour price, any optional sightseeing, souvenirs and items of a personal nature such as laundry.
The reference amount of pocket money for this trip is € 250, - per person. This amount is an average of what travelers in recent years have spent during this trip to meals and refreshments, additional excursions, entrance fees, any local airport taxes and gratuities. Of course, your own spending habits this also decisive. Souvenirs are therefore not included. During the trip several (optional) excursions, you spot (using the tour leader) can book. If a better excursion can be booked in advance, then it will be listed in the itinerary and on the booking form. So you can still give your group an individual accent.Food
The costs for meals may vary depending upon location, type of restaurant and number of courses eaten and so the prices given are an average guide. Local restaurants located off the beaten track may be less expensive, whereas an upmarket restaurant located in the centre of a major city may charge more.

 

Light lunch £: 4.00
Dinner £: 10.00

 

Drink
The prices for drinks can vary greatly depending upon location and the prices detailed below are an average guide. In general you would expect that drinks purchased in a supermarket or local bar to be less expensive, whilst drinks in an upmarket bar or restaurant may be more expensive.

 

Bottle of Beer £: 1.50
Water £: 0.50

 

OPTIONAL - EXURSIONS

 


Some free time has been allowed for you to explore on your own or with your travelling companions.

 

TIPPING - TOUR LEADER

 


At your discretion you might also consider tipping your Tour Leader in appreciation of the efficiency and service you receive.
The amount 20 euro, of tipping is a directive except the tips of the Dutch or local tour guide. Travelling is common to eg. Drivers, cooks and guides to tip. Gratuities are often an indispensable supplement to the income, which is usually a whole family depends. In many cases you can give a tip itself. Common expenses (group tips, entrance fees, etc.) are usually paid from the joint pot for which a contribution is requested to all participants. When you are satisfied with the tour leader yourself, you like him / her, of course, give a tip.

 

TIPPING - LOCAL CREW

 


Although entirely voluntary, tipping is a recognised part of life in this region of the world. Some local staff will look to members of the group for personal recognition of particular services provided. Accordingly, you should allow approx. €20 for tipping.

 

In order to make things easier for you, the Tour Leaders may organise a group’s tips kitty and if this is the case, they will account for it throughout the tour.

Preparation

PREPARING FOR YOUR TOUR
At least one set of casual / non-walking clothes will be useful for wearing in hotels on this holiday. Whilst walking you must not worry about how you look: comfort and protection against bad weather are of prime importance. Because mountain weather is so very variable, we recommend a number of thin layers rather than a few thick ones. The following list is our suggested guide to help you with your packing based upon our many years of travelling/walking. Using your own judgment for packing is of course important, especially with regard to casual clothing etc but please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about packing for your holiday, or are uncertain as to the suitability of your clothing and equipment.
 
 
 
RESERVING YOUR PLACE
 
To reserve your place on this tour you will need to check availability on the I Visit Albania website. Our tours can fill up quickly so you are advised to book as early as possible. If your chosen date is ‘Available’ or ‘Guaranteed’ we will be able to provisionally hold you a space for up to 48 hours. For Self-Guided holidays and Private Journeys simply choose your date of travel and let us know so we can confirm all ground services. The easiest way to confirm your booking is through our website. When you are ready to book, we normally require a 10% non-refundable deposit, but for some holidays this may be more to cover such items as permit fees, internal flights or other non-refundable services. If your travel starts within 60 days of booking, full payment will be required at the time of booking. 100% No Surcharge Guarantee The price paid for our holidays is no longer subject to change. Once booked and confirmed we will guarantee the price you pay will not increase, whatever the circumstances. You will not be approached to pay fuel surcharges unlike the vast majority of other adventure tour operators. The price guarantee applies to all new bookings departing between 1st January 2017 and 31st December 2017.
 
 
ESSENTIAL INFO

Passport Information You need a passport to return six months validity. Vaccinations and Visa The visa is issued on arrival in Albania and is free of charge. As a traveler, you are responsible to have the correct travel documents. No visa required for most nationalities, including UK passport holders, most other EU nationalities, US, Canadian, Australian and New Zealand. There are no specific health risks. Other nationalities should consult their local embassy or consular office. All visa information is subject to change. You should confirm all visa related questions with the relevant Embassy prior to departure.
 
DOCUMENTS
• Passport - including appropriate visas
• Photocopies of all documents (keep separate)
• Airline tickets (or printouts of your e-tickets with the airline booking reference)
• Travel insurance details
• Emergency contact numbers
• Trip dossier
• Credit cards/ traveller’s cheques
 
 
 
EATING AND DRINKING

Food in Albania is quite varied thanks to the many influences on the country, particularly Mediterranean, combining both Turkish and European tastes. Dairy products, especially milk and yoghurt are present in almost every meal, usually locally sourced. Meals are reasonably priced at 10-15 euros per person for traditional dishes including baked rice, casseroles, stuffed aubergine and jani meat (beef or lamb sauteed with onions, garlic and spices). Fresh fish is also plentiful and is an important ingredient in many dishes. We reccommend sampling Tirana stew, Elbasani yoghurt and baked phyllo pie. For dessert Baklava is very popular. Your leader will recommend restaurants for each evening. WEATHER & SEASONALITY Albania generally experiences a Mediterranean climate with summer temperatures at 25degC on average in the day, and the warmest months are July and August where temperatures can rise to 30degC. It becomes cooler further inland towards Korca during these months, especially in the evenings with high temperatures around 25degC. There is always the small chance of rain in the mountains yet we aim not to travel in the coldest and wettest months, which are November to January. Berat also experiences a Mediterranean climate but thanks to its location in the shadow of Mt Tomorr, summers are much warmer than expected for the Mediterranean.
 
 
 
CLOTHING
 
• Walking boots and spare laces
• Trainers/ sandals
• Walking socks
• T-shirts
• Trekking trousers
• Short trousers
• Light fleece
• Thick fleece
• Thermal Baselayer shirt
• Waterproof jacket with hood
• Waterproof trousers
• Warm Gloves
• Sun Hat
• Warm Hat
 
FOREIGN EXCHANGE
ATM Availability: Most larger towns. Credit Card Acceptance: Credit cards are not widely accepted in Albania. You can also withdraw cash with your credit card, but (usually) not checkout in shops and restaurants. Make sure you, especially in the mountain villages, have enough cash to pay for your meals. Travellers Cheques: Travellers Cheques are not widely accepted in Albania, though you should take some as a back-up in case of emergencies. Local Currency: Albanian Lek. Recommended Currency for Exchange: Sterling, US Dollars and Euros cash is widely accepted in Exchange Shopps in major towns and cities. Most transactions in Albania are done on a strictly cash only basis using the Lek. Where to Exchange: Exchange offices in major towns and cities. Electric Supply & Plugs 2 Pin Round.
 
 
EQUIPMENT

Take a water bottle, a sun hat and suncream. A torch is useful in case of powercuts/emergencies. Camera. It is also important to bring the following: good waterproof, ankle-high hiking boots, warm clothing such as a fleectrui, light rain gear (waterproof jacket and pants) a daypack, headgear (cap). Sunglasses, sunburn, anti-mosquito repellent, walking sticks (if you like to walk along here) A sleeping bag, you do not have to bring on this trip.
• Daypack/rucksack (size approx. 35 litre capacity)
• 2 Large water bottles (1 litre each)
• Towel (essential)
• Torch
• Camera & accessories
• Binoculars (optional)
• A variety of dry bag/plastic bags
• Sunglasses
• Trekking poles (highly recommended)
• Washing/Shaving kit
• Insect Repellent
• Small personal First Aid kit
• Anti-Bacterial Handwash
• Sun Cream & lip salve
 
FOOTWEAR

Comfortable shoes or sandals for visiting the sites and towns. Clothing We advise you to wear layers of clothing that can be easy on and off in case of change of the weather. Weather is changeable in the mountains and it can be cool, especially at night, so bring a warmer jacket/fleece. A raincoat is essential at all times in case of the odd shower. You should dress with respect in the rural villages so bring some long trousers. Don't forget your swimming costume.
 
LUGGAGE ON TOUR
One main piece of baggage and a daypack. Remember you are expected to carry your own luggage so don’t overload yourself. Please bear in mind there are lots of stairs in Albania and no portarage in the hotels. We advise you to bring your luggage in a flexible backpack, gym bag or a suitcase with a soft top. In connection with the limited luggage we ask you not to take hard suitcase. Take especially not bring too much, but limit you to what you really need. You are responsible for carrying your luggage to the property. Luggage 20kg Airlines are usually one piece of luggage up to 20 kilos. For domestic flights, some airlines apply a lower limit luggage. This is clearly stated in the "travel info" tab, under the heading flight. Please ensure the weight of your main baggage is restricted to 12kg-15kg. The following items can also be useful:
• Face wipes
• Moisturising cream
• Snacks/energy bars
• Padlock for your kitbag
• Small mirror
• Earplugs
• Cold water travel wash (preferably biodegradable)
• Travel adaptor These items are also useful but don’t pack them in your hand luggage – put them in your main bag only!
• Penknife/small scissors
• Safety pins
• Small sewing/repair kit
• Nail clippers Please ensure you carry essential personal medication in your hand luggage rather than checked in bags.
 
MEDICATIONS
We recommend you to take a modest journey pharmacy. Consider including painkillers, disinfectants, sunburn (blisters) patches, anti-fever, diarrhea, constipation, insect bites and motion sickness. In addition, a tick and ORS (Oral Rehydration Salts, against dehydration) is recommended. Our tour guides are also a limited first-aid kit. Use your special medication, please bring enough and ask your pharmacist to prepare a travel document for you. Keep this document in your hand luggage.
 
PERSONALE FIRST AID KIT
Your tour leader will be first aid trained and will carry a first aid kit. However, we recommend that you carry a small first aid kit for personal use. This could contain things like plasters, sterile dressings and bandages, a blister kit, pain killers e.g. paracetamol and ibuprofen, antiseptic cream, antihistamine cream (for insect bites), sunburn cream, anti-diarrhoea pills e.g. Imodium or Lomotil and rehydration salts e.g. dioralyte.
 
SAFETY AND ADVICE
The safety of customers and staff is at I.V.A always comes first. Through our contacts with agents and local authorities, we continuously monitor the safety situation at all our destinations. For current information on the security situation at your destination, please refer to the central government's website: travel advice.
 
EMERGENCIES AND DISASTERS
Make no trackers at home! Make sure that at home always copies of both your itinerary if you have flight. We will send a list of the hotels we stay during the trip because this change sometimes and rooms are often booked under a different name. In case of emergency we are accessible for both travelers and at home 24 hours a day. Why not call the hotel but I.V.A. During office hours you can call us on +355696040640. Outside office hours, you will be redirected to our emergency service or you can directly call our emergency number: +355696040640 Tip: create a digital file to. Scan your passport, visa, e-tickets and other important documents and email it to yourself. So you have, in case of loss or theft while traveling, always copies of your important papers on hand.

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