My tips Albania road-trip

Leaving Montenegro

Albania Road-trip

I’m leaving Montenegro today for a dream adventure. My Albania road-trip has been in my mind for ten years or more. I’ve no idea what to expect as I have not planned this at all. It was very last minute. So, no idea what towns Ill be visiting. No idea how to get there. No idea what the local cuisine is like and no, I’ve no idea where I’ll stay 🙂 but my journey starts in a bus in Kotor. The same bus can be taken from Dubrovnik. Very cheap. 8 Euro. I cant get to my final destination tonight. The best way I can find is to travel to the border of Montenegro Ulcinj and spend the night there. From there Ill go to Tiriana via bus again in the morning. Ulcinj is known as a city with most beautiful and longest beaches on the Montenegro coast.  There were no hotels as such just one listing and dreadful reviews so I found a brand new hostel called the Pirate hostel and it was amazing. I highly recommend it. If you decided to stay here there is lots to do. Large and cozy common area and a very well equipped kitchen with a dinning area. Also a large front yard with a barbecue that is free to use. And lots of tours that you will love for sure. The owner and manager has been in the business for years and is a true professional. Love them.

Hostel Pirate is located 800 meters from the main bus station, just 10 minutes walk from the old town, 15 minutes walk from Mala Plaza and 15 km from Ada Bojana which is one of the nicest beaches on the Montenegro coast. Ulcinj is known as a city with most beautiful and longest beaches on the Montenegro coast.

Rooms are spacious and very nice decorated with a view on city center and some of them with it`s own balcony. All rooms have air conditioning.

Albania road-trip Travel advice

“Tell them your American” they advised me in Montenegro. What really? normally its not a good thing to tell anyone in Europe but as the USA funded Albania in the war against Kosovo they seemingly love the Americans, so lets see shall we, today I shall use my American passport if stopped anywhere.Albania Road-Trip

I’m leaving Ulcinj Montenegro this morning and heading to Albania via bus for a look as I have tried many times and can never find a flight. So today I’ll bus it about 3.5 hours depending on the border in Montenegro as this can take hours and then another 4 or so hours driving south to near Greece.

updates will follow:

Updating now. The trip from Ulcinj took 4 hours and I arrived in Tirana at 2 in the morning. The city is dead at this time. There was nothing open and it was quite intimidating. Luckily a woman who spoke English walked with me to a large chain hotel and they got me a taxi. It was eerie how dead this city was at night.

Albania Road-Trip

Albania Road-Trip

Tiriana

The next day I met a friend in Tiriana and we drove in a UN special forces Jeep to a town called Sarande next to the Greek border. The terrain is crazy and the roads are unruly to say the least. My friend was driving and said “he had the route planned” bullshit is all I can say. 12 hours later at 2am we arrived. We crossed mountains, risked our lives, prayed and eventually we arrived. The trip was eventful to say the least. The scenery beautiful. I reminded me of Ireland. I have been wanting to come here for years and it didn’t disappoint. Albania Road-TripThe public transport is erratic and hilarious. It cost me 8 euro to go everywhere. It seemed to be the standard price and they do charge tourists a surcharge. If you have a local with you, have them buy the ticket if you are at a station.  The bus system as its called is just a lot of mini buses going around the country with no bus station per say or stops. You are physically dumped in the middle of nowhere in the middle of the night when the driver determines this is where to get out before he turns off to the next destination. Even in the capital city. Shocking and scary to say the least. However we survived the Albania Road-trip and made it to Saranda where the beaches are fab. The food and is good and the beer is cold. Prices are fabulous to those of us earning in euro and other western currencies. Again you know you are being charged more for being a tourist.

Things to bear in mind when driving through Albania. Police, rumor has it they are corrupt and will stop you for anything and issue you with a bogus fine on the spot, especially western tourists.

Albania Road-Trip Albania Road-Trip


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About Sandra

Just a girl from Ireland who wants to live everywhere. Not a planner, a winger when it comes to travel. I don't even like people who plan too much. Without spontaneity there is no depth. A jack of all trades. A great friend, loyal and passionate and I expect the same in return. Always ready for the next adventure at a moments notice.
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