Long Balkan Tours

Including: Albania (Durres, Tirana), Macedonia (Ohrid), Greece (Thessaloniki, Vergina)

kruja 2

Day 1: Durres

Fly to Tirana in Albania and travel to the port of Durres for a three-night. Enjoy a welcome drink and dinner at your hotel tonight.

Day 2: Tirana - Kruja

Your holiday begins with a full-day included excursion to Tirana, Kruja and Durres. Albania’s capital since 1920, Tirana is a compact town where Turkish, Italian and Russian influences can be seen. Afterwards travel to Kruja, a charming town which enjoys a striking location on the side of a mountain. Later enjoy a taste of Albanian cuisine at a restaurant and explore the local market. Finally visit Durres, Albania’s most important commercial port.

Day 3: Shkodra

Today’s excursion takes you to ancient Shkodra. This picturesque town is rich with historical monuments including Rozafa Castle, founded by the Illyrians and rebuilt by the Turks and Venetians, the Turkish baths and mosque. Afterwards, visit scenic Lake Shkodra and the rustic villages that line the shores. The largest of the Balkan lakes, Lake Shkodra is also a paradise for birdlife, with over 290 species including some of Europe’s last pelicans inhabiting the lake.

Day 4: Durres-Lake Ohrid

In the morning travel through central Albania to Lake Ohrid in Macedonia. End route visit the towns of Elbasan and Librazhd and also explore Scampis Castle. Arrive in the late afternoon at the Hotel in Ohrid.

Day 5: Ohrid

Today, take a morning tour of Ohrid, the jewel in Macedonia’s crown. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Ohrid’s narrow cobbled streets are filled with stunning Byzantine churches and more than 800 Byzantine-style icons dating from the 11th to the 14th century. After those of Moscow’s Tretyakov Gallery, they are considered to be the most important collection of icons in the world. The town also boasts the oldest Slav monastery, built between the 7th and 19th centuries. It is set beside Lake Ohrid, which is also a UNESCO site and is a natural tectonic lake which is one of the world’s oldest and Europe’s deepest. Later in the afternoon, you visit a local Macedonian family and their home. It is a fascinating opportunity to learn about their day-to-day lives and to understand Macedonian traditions and culture. You will also be served with traditional refreshments and snacks.

Day 6: Lake Mavrovo - National Park Mavrovo

A full-day l excursion takes you to Lake Mavrovo, a large artificial lake that is situated in Mavrovo National Park and is surrounded by mountains.

Day 7: Lake Ohrid

Explore more of Lake Ohrid on an optional morning tour. The majority of the lake’s plant and animal species are endemic to Ohrid and it is also renowned for its lovely scenery and astonishingly clean, clear waters. In the afternoon, you can watch a rehearsal by a local folklore group and see a dance performed exclusively for our guests.

Day 8: Ohrid - Thessaloniki

Today you cross the border to Thessaloniki in Greece via Bitola, Edessa and Pella. Turkish mosques and a bazaar characterize Bitola, Macedonia’s second city, while Pella is famed for being the birthplace of Alexander the Great. Lunch is included. Later, arrive in Thessaloniki and stay for two nights.

Day 9: Thessaloniki - Vergina

In the morning enjoy an included tour of Thessaloniki, Greece’s second city and its cultural capital. This lively cosmopolitan city boasts a wealth of symbols from its glorious past along with excellent shopping, a colorful arts scene and fine food. Its historic attractions include the White Tower on the seafront, the Roman Rotunda and the Arch of Galerius. Thessaloniki also has the richest collection of Byzantine churches in Greece and includes the 4th-century Church of Agios Dimitrios, thought to be Greece’s largest church. In the afternoon, excursion to Vergina. Here, a series of tombs that belonged to Philip II of the Macedonian royal family were unearthed by Professor Manolis Andróenikos. It also proved the area was once the site of Macedonia’s first capital, Aigai. Your day ends with a farewell dinner at the hotel.

Day 10: Thessaloniki Airport

Travel to the airport for your flight back.

10 days from adriatic to the aegean

Tour highlights:

  • Tirana: Skanderbeg Square, Ethem Bey Mosque, Administrative buildings
  • Durres: Roman Amphitheatre, Durres Port
  • Kruja: Old Bazaar with cobbled street, Skanderbeg Castle and Museum
  • Shkodra: Rozafa Castle, Lake Shkodra
  • Ohrid: Old Town, Samuel Fortress, St Sophia Church
  • National Park Mavrovo: Lake Mavrovo, St John the Baptist Monastery
  • Bitola: Pedestrian Street, Building of the old Consulates, Mosques
  • Thessaloniki: White Tower, Church Agios Demetrius, Arch of Galerius. Aristotelous Square
  • Vergina: Tomb of Philip II, Tomb of Alexander the IV Son of Alexander the Great