Lengarica Canyon, Katiu Ottoman Bridge and the Hotsprings of Benja, Permet, Albania. Photo via Wikimedia Commons:malenki

Boat harbor in Saranda, Albania. Photo via Flickr:Artur Malinowski
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Albanian Highlights Tour

Albania Bike Tours

Discover Albania by bicycle!

This guided or self-guided bike tour in Albania will raise your heart rate in more ways than one!

People here are still filled with excitement and curiosity to see visitors in their villages, especially those traveling by bicycle. You will be welcomed with open arms and warm, sincere hospitality.

Highlights include:

  • UNESCO World Heritage sites
  • Snow-capped mountains
  • Inviting beaches on the Albanian Riviera
  • Local culture and friendly people
  • Local cuisine
  • ....and daily cycling challenges.

It was once rare that foreigners could visit this mysterious country. Now you can cycle and explore this unique land. Albania is awakening from its slumber.

The terrain is challenging with some long steep climbs at times but you will be rewarded by the stunning views and exhilarated once again by adrenaline-pumping descents. Don't be discouraged, however, as now being offered is a brand new fleet of electric bikes.

Be sure to check out our full list of bike tours in Albania.

Skill Level

Moderate to difficult guided or self-guided bike tour in Albania. The route takes place on mainly paved roads and a few gravel paths. Elevation ranges from 406 meters to 1658 meters. (1332 feet to 5440 feet). Route varies from day to day with significant ascents and descents. We can provide graphs of the daily rides upon request. For the guided tour, the support vehicle allows you to do as much or as little cycling as you would like.

***Breaking news! Electric bikes are now available!

Where You’ll Stay

Accommodations in 3 and 4 star hotels and comfortable guesthouses

What’s Included

  • Self Guided Tour:
  • Accommodations with private facilities
  • Breakfasts
  • Hybrid bike rental (30 gear, Giant)
  • All transfers as described in the tour
  • A cell phone to use for emergencies
  • Luggage transfer
  • Guided Tour also includes:
  • All Lunches and Dinners
  • Van support (capacity up to 7 riders)
  • Professional English speaking guide who cycles with the group

What’s Not Included

  • All drinks
  • Arrival Airport Transfer
  • Bicycle protection
  • Entry fees to attractions
  • Gratuities
TourBike
TypeBoth
SkillModerate–Difficult
Length10 days
From870 Rates
Client Reviews

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Tour Dates

Self-Guided tour:
Arrival possible daily from April 1 to June 30 and September 30 to October 31, 2017
Guided Tour:
April 8, June 6, August 22, and October 10, 2017

Day-To-Day Itinerary

Albanian Highlights Tour Map

Day 1: Arrival
Day 2: Transfer from Tirana, Qafe Thane to Pogradec, 25 mi. (40 km)
Day 3: Pogradec to Korcë, 32 mi. (51 km)
Day 4: Korcë to Gërmenjë, 44 mi. (71 km)
Day 5: Gërmenjë to Përmet, 32 mi. (52 km)
Day 6: Përmet to Gjorokastër, 45 mi. (72 km)
Day 7: Gjirokastër to Saranda , 43 mi. (70 km)
Day 8: Saranda to Himarë, 32 mi. (52 km)
Day 9: Himarë to Vlore, 40 mi. (65 km)
Day 10: Departure - Transfer from Vlore to Tirana Airport

*All distances are approximate.

Day 1: Arrival
After checking into the hotel in Tirana, there will be time to tour the mysterious Albanian capital. 

Day 2: Transfer from Tirana, Qafe Thane to Pogradec 25 mi. (40 km) 
After the morning transfer to the Albanian-Macedonian border you will start cycling clock-wise around the lake, stoping for lunch at the UNESCO town of Ohrid. After lunch, the tour continues 
along the shore all the way to Tushemisht, the other Albanian-Macedonian border. (Elevation: 62 meters/203 ft)

Day 3: Pogradec to Korcë, 32 mi. (51 km)
Morning cycling leads from the lake to a high plateau bounded by mountains. You will follow the gorge for a time until the hills open to a vast plain, a patchwork of individual farms and colors. Final destination today is Korcë, high in the Albanian hinterlands. The locals are quite influenced by the close proximity to Greece in more than one way. Many are fluent in both Greek and Albanian.  (Elevation: 412 m/1352 ft)

Day 4: Korcë to Gërmenjë, 44 mi. (71 km)
Leaving behind the agricultural plateau of Korcë , the route climbs 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 and over the Barmash Pass (1159 m) to Germenj lying in its own tranquil valley. (Elevation: 1171 m/3842 ft)

Day 5: Gërmenjë to Përmet, 32 mi. (52 km)
Cycling out of Germenj the tour leads to a high grassy plateau surrounded by soaring peaks before reaching the source of the River Vjosa and descending through its spectacular gorge to Leskovik. The descent continues to Cashare and the route then follows the corniche route high above the river to Përmet situated on a bluff above the river, famed for its cuisine and its strong raki. After lunch, you can take a short ride to the thermal springs for a swim! (Elevation: 614 m/2014 ft)

Day 6: Përmet to Gjorokastër, 44 mi. (70 km)
Your Albanian bike tour continues along the valley towards Kelcyra and the distant shark tooth peaks, which hide a further gorge. You will ride between the peaks to the confluence of the Drinos following yet another gorge which opens out into a wide plain with the town of Gjirokastra (City of 1000 steps) high above, perched on the steep side of the Drino Valley.  This is a UNESCO World Heritage comprised of hundreds of Ottoman-style tower houses with distinctive stone roofs, wooden balconies, and whitewashed stone walls.You will want to explore the narrow cobbled alleys of this magical city. (Elevation:  300 m/984 ft)

Day 7: Gjirokastër to Saranda, 43 mi. (70 km)
The gateway to southern Albania, Saranda, lies along the Ionian coast, sandwiched between the high mountains and the sea and close to the ancient remains of Butrint. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Butrint is one of the county's most important archaeological sites, tracing its origins back to the Greeks and the Romans. (Elevation: 725 m/2379 ft)

Day 8: Saranda to Himarë, 32 mi. (52 km)
The morning brings a roller coaster ride that begins as the mist is burned off by the sun, climbing steeply out of Saranda to a rocky plateau, through cols into bays and around headlands. You will cyle with the stunning mountain scenery to the right and sea to the left before descending to the long beach and the bay of Himarë. (Elevation: 1064 m/3491 ft)

Day 9: Himarë to Vlore, 40 mi. (65 km)
Today’s route is as challenging as it is spectacular. Cycling up to the Llogara pass 1000m above the blue water of the Ionian sea and its National Park , home to black pine, Eurasian otter, and golden eagles. The park is a scenic expanse of protected woodland that encompasses the forests on the northern side of the Llogora Pass. After lunch, we cycle downhill all the way to Vlore. (Elevation: 1658 m/5440 ft)

Day 10: Departure - Transfer from Vlore to Tirana Airport
Early transfer to Tirana. Depending on the flight you may have time to visit the capital and the Nation Museum. Transfer to Tirana Airport.

You can view all of our bike tours in Europe or look at our featured bike trips, specials, and news.

Email or Call 800-951-4384 +1 570-965-2064

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Customer Feedback

  • Linda and Marcel 2 years ago

    We absolutely LOVED the Albanian Highlights Tour. It was everything the description promised and much more. I would rate it A+++ (and higher) for the quality of the guiding, equipment, meals accommodation, snacks, and cultural experience. Junid and Armand were so organized and treated us like treasured family guests. No corners were cut, right until every last one of us was dropped off at our individual destination on the final day. Definitely value for money. I will admit that the terrain and elevation (up and down) was challenging for both of us, but we felt a great sense of accomplishment that we were able to rise (literally) to the demands. The description of 'moderate to difficult' is accurate. The van was always there if we needed it, and thankfully we didn't. But back-up for a flat tire or other unexpected problem was not far behind. In my opinion, cycling (or riding in the van) with 'Cycle Albania' is really the only way to experience Albania to the fullest.

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