Albania Weather: Best time to Visit Albania
Last Updated on July 2, 2021 by Anita Hendrieka
Positioned in south-east Europe lies one country which deserves more attention to travellers coming to Europe. That country is Albania. For Albania, tourism is growing steadily every year but it’s still one of the least visited places in Europe due to a lot of stereotypes and misconceptions about the country.
While many of those stereotypes and misconceptions are directed at the people thanks to films like Taken, another misconception has to do with the weather in Albania.
When travellers come to Albania, they usually come here in the heat of summer, and while some LOVE it, many go away thinking it’s just too hot! I want to show and inform you that Albania is not ONLY good for summer fun and tanning on the beach, in fact it might be my least favourite time of year here in terms of the Albania weather. But it’s actually a beautiful place all year-round.
So, when to visit Albania? I recommend travellers come in every season, apart from summer! There really is a reason to visit an enjoy the incredible Albania weather all year round.
Albania is a very diverse country. There are a lot of spectacular places to visit. From historic and UNESCO towns like Gjirokastër and Berat to beautiful coastal cities like Saranda and Vlora. Then you have the north of Albania which hold incredible scenery such as the Albanian Alps and beautiful mountain towns like Kruja, the historical city of Albania.
Let me tell you more about Albanian weather, especially the Albanian Riviera weather!
Albania Weather – What is it like?
The average low temperature in Albania during winter is around 1 degree. In the south where I live (Saranda), it’s always 1-4 degrees warmer than northern cities like Shkoder. We get less rain and more sunny days.
In my opinion, Albania is one of the few countries in Europe that doesn’t have an overbearing winter if you compare to the likes of the UK, Poland and Romania. The climate in Albania makes it a great winter destination for those who dislike the cold. No matter where you are in Albania, temperatures rarely drop below 5 ºC during the winter.
On average in the north they get over 290 days of sunshine and in the south they get over 325 days of sunshine! Albania weather is some of the best you can find in Europe. Which is why I think the best time to visit Albania is any time!
Albania Weather in Spring – March 20th – June 21st
If you want to come and experience the optimal Albania weather, I highly recommend you come in Spring. This is my favourite season here and in my opinion, March is the best time to visit Albania! It’s starting to get warm, the flowers are blossoming and there are virtually no tourists.
I really love the month of March, not only because it’s my birthday but because this is the time you will literally have UNESCO sites to yourself. Since the temperature in Albania during March is also relatively cool, it’s just pleasant to walk around outside or go hiking.
As you get closer May travellers start to visit Albania and then by summer European tourists are flocking (although it’s nothing compared to Greece and Croatia yet!). For many this might seem like the perfect time to take advantage of the hot Albanian climate. But if you plan on venturing away from all the Albanian beaches, you’ll find the Albania temperatures of summer overbearing.
Come to Albania in spring if you:
- Like travelling without tourists everywhere
- Like cheap prices (prices go up in summer)
- Don’t mind wearing a jumper at night as the Albanian night temperatures are still chilly
- Like colourful destinations as beautiful flowers start to bloom and the country lights up!
Albania Weather in Summer – 21st June – September 23rd
Summer is when Albania comes alive for tourists. Most people thing this is when to visit ALbania, and in fact this is when 90% of people come to the country. All the clubs, restaurants and accommodation begin to open their doors as many close only to open for this season. It’s a shame because as I said, spring and autumn are also magical. This is when the south of Albania shine and you will find places like Ksamil (named the gem of the Albanian Riviera) absolutely packed with people.
The weather in Albania during summer can be intense! While the winter temperatures might be mild, the summer climate in Albania is anything but!
So, in terms of discovering Albania, summer is my least favourite. Also, because of the demand for tourists’ prices rise, sometimes double. This happens in accommodation but also restaurants and bars too.
Come to Albania in summer if you:
- Like the heat of the summer because in Saranda the temperatures hit 40 degrees!
- Like to party as beach bars and clubs are fully open along the Albanian Riviera
- Don’t mind sharing the places you want to see with hordes of tourists (including cruise ship tourists in Saranda)
Albania Weather in Autumn – September 23rd – December 21st
Autumn is another favourite for me as the crowds go from the Albanian Riviera and it starts to become quiet again. Nature is beautiful, everything is tainted with an orange colour in celebration of autumn and the weather doesn’t really start to get cold until November.
For example, it’s currently the 19th of November as I write this, and it’s only in the last few days, I have started wearing my jacket here in Saranda! Obviously inland and northern regions it starts to get chilly a little earlier but from my experience, the heat of summer extends until early November.
This means that for those who want to experience the best Albanian weather but can’t travel in Spring, autumn will also hit that sweet spot. And unlike winter, many seasonal places will still be open until September and October, but you’ll have them to yourself!
Come to Albania in autumn if you:
- You like exploring places with fewer tourists
- Love cheaper prices, as businesses start to cut prices in half and some shut down for this season (in the Riviera)
- Like hiking as this is a great time for with the weather in Albania much cooler than in summertime with a lot fewer people
- Interested in exploring beautiful beaches with NO ONE in sight. Autumn and spring are my favourite time to explore the Albanian Riviera!
Albania Weather in Winter – December 21st – March 20th
An absolutely hidden magical time to visit the country. There’s snow throughout which makes a great time for winter sports enthusiasts! You will find the capital, Tirana filled with Christmas lights. You will find tourists spots absolutely empty which are great for really immersing yourself into the local culture.
Although it’s cold, the climate in Albania makes for one of the mildest winters throughout Europe as the country is neighbours with Greece and we all know about Greek weather.
You will find along the Albanian Riveria that nearly all businesses are closed so just beware of that. I hope in the future that the tourists can spread throughout the season making a demand for businesses to stay open!
Come to Albania in winter if you:
- Like skiing and snowboarding at a fraction of the price. Places like Bigell in Dardha, Voskopoja, and Boga are good ones to try and accommodation is very affordable (around 40-60 euro a night in ski resorts!)
- Want to explore the capital of Tirana. A lot of locals come to Tirana after the summer season ends to work, so you will find a majority of the population here. It’s a great time to soak up all the city has to offer!
I hope this article has given you an insight into Albania weather and that Albania is the perfect destination to come all year-round. If you can handle the temperature in Albania during the summer, then you will absolutely fall in love during the other seasons!
In the future, I would love to see more tourists venture here at times other than summer. This is important for several reasons including making sure that the area doesn’t get affected by overtourism and boosting the local economy.
Businesses in the Albanian Riveria find it extremely hard after summer and many have to travel elsewhere in the country to find a job to survive for the winter. It would be amazing to see the growth in tourism here and for it to spread into other seasons!
Have you experienced the awesomeness of Albania weather? Or are you hoping to visit? Leave me a comment down below and tell me which season you would love to explore Albania in!
Other articles you will love:
- Albania Travel Guide for First Timers: Everything You Need!
- 9 Reasons Why You Should Visit Albania
- 35 Unique Things to do in Albania
- Is Albania Safe? The Truth About Safety in Albania
- South Albania Itinerary: 10 Days in the Albanian Riviera!
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