28 September 2017

The Guardian picks Albania’s seaside for the gallery of the week

The  well-known newspaper Guardian chooses once a week the best gallery with photos of  a destination. This time, it was Albania. Jure Matičič the winning photographer of the week captures the Albanian seaside town of Durrës.  Matičič is a photographer from Ljubljana, Slovenia, and recently visited Durrës, Albania’s second largest city.

Photo credits: Jure Matičič 

Along the seafront, kids were playing on a statue commemorating Albanian resistance to the invasion by Mussolini’s Italian forces on 7 April 1939.

Photo credits: Jure Matičič 

About 35km west of Tirana, Durrës is a port and among the largest cities on the Adriatic. It’s also a popular seaside resort. For decades, under the communist regime of Enver Hoxha, it was just about the only holiday destination available to Albanians.

Photo credits: Jure Matičič 

The city was, briefly, renamed Durrës-Enver Hoxha during the late 80s. Then (after the fall of communism) it became the location for mass migrations to Italy. In the past couple of decades, Durrës has had a facelift.

25 September 2017

The Guardian: Trekking in the highest peak of Albania

The British prestigious newspaper “The Guardian” has recently published the article written by Ben Lerwill, describing his adventure in Albania starting in the high peaks of Accursed Mountains, continuing along the trail of Kosovo and Montenegro.
Albania is offering many kinds of tourism, including the adventurous tourism, for all people who love hiking trails, climbing and outdoor lovers.
Rocky road … trekking in the Accursed Mountains. Photograph: Ben Lerwill

A short summary of the Ben’s Lervill article for the Guardian:

The hiking begins a few hours’ drive to the south, with an ascent of Albania’s highest point, the 2,751m Mount Korab. Functioning as an appetiser to the week’s main walk, the climb is a long, hot slog. The slopes are full of grasshoppers and buttercups. We pass only tough-faced, welly-booted shepherds. There are snow patches in the higher cols. At the summit, just to muddle the multi-country element further, the panorama reveals the cushion-soft valleys of western Macedonia.
The Korab walk takes most of the day. Radomire, the trailhead village where we start and end, is a cluster of minarets, cheap beer and unsealed roads. All its bathroom taps are left on round the clock, even in the local bar, which baffles me until it’s explained that the plumbing wouldn’t cope with the pressure of being turned off. And like the water, we keep moving. By nightfall we’ve mini-bussed into Kosovo, ready(ish) to begin the hike proper.
When we arrive into Valbona Valley at the journey’s end, the sun is fierce overhead. Albanian flags flutter from village rooftops, flashes of red and black against the unforgiving grey of the hills. There is more to come from our trip – time in the capital city Tirana and a sailing along Lake Koman, the latter an accidentally lovely product of a Chinese-built dam – but this is where we take our boots off.

It’s funny the memories that stay with you from a journey like this. Mighty horizons and forested slopes. Doorstops of sheep’s cheese for breakfast. And a tatty plaque, on top of a big mountain, adrift in a sea of Balkan peaks." 

21 September 2017

German Travel Magazine: Albania -Between sea and mountain

DAV (Deutscher Alpenverein) is the largest Mountain Sports Association in the world and one of Germany's major sports and nature conservation associations. DAV recently published an article about Albania, specifically about Southern Albania written by journalist Joachim Chwasczca.

Mediterranean landscapes of the southern Albania can be enjoyed by walking or biking on the roads with spectacular views from the sea. Llogara Pass is one of the most beautiful roads in Albania, is a high mountain pass with the highest point of 1, 027 m within the Ceraunian Mountains along the Albanian Riviera.  The platform allows you to have the best view of all the area. It seems like you are seeing this view from an airplane. 

Der Llogarapass an der Südküste Albaniens schraubt sich bis auf 1027 Meter empor und ist bei klarer Sicht eine fantastische Aussichtskanzel. Der Pass ist Grenze und Wasserscheide zwischen dem Adriatischen und dem Ionischen Meer. Steht man oben an einer der Aussichtskanzeln, fällt der Blick wie aus einem Flugzeug nach unten und folgt dem tausend Meter tiefer liegenden Küstenbogen bis zur Hafenstadt Saranda, dem antiken Hafen Onchesmos. Die Insel Korfu zeichnet sich ab, Griechenland ist zum Greifen nahe. 

See original article  here!

15 September 2017

Between archaeology and bunkers, the contradictions and fascination of Albania

Recently, the international media keeps urging the tourists to visit Albania.
One of the most prestigious Italian newspapers published an article focused on the Albania, a former Communist country, with its secrets to discover.
 “Repubblica” newspaper dedicated the article how to explore the Albanian natural beauties, archeological sites and gastronomy.
Photo: Nino Barletta

Today, in this country that ended 46-years Communist regime and has isolated it from the rest of the world, we find a tourist destination. The geographical proximity of the two countries, across the Adriatic Sea to the Apulia shores, the low cost of life convinced 182,000 Italians from January to July 2017 to spend their holidays in the Eagle's Earth, 56% more than last year.
The seaside resorts of the South, Saranda first, are the favorite and the most crowded in the high season.
Photo: Nino Barletta

Butrint archaeological site and the towns of Argirocastro and Berat, who tell the story of the past, are included in the travel routes.
So, the “Repubblica” advices  the Italian readers to visit Albania, this beautiful and charmingly odd country. 
Photo: Nino Barletta

Original article in Italian here!