5 Best Hikes in Albania – Hiking in Albania 101

Last Updated on April 26, 2024

This site contains affiliate links for products and services we recommend. Read my disclaimer for more information. If you make a purchase through these links, at no extra cost to you, I will earn a small commission (for which I am very grateful).

Albania is a country in southeastern Europe, and it has become one of the most popular travel destinations for hikers because of its untouched scenery and beautiful views. 

The hiking in Albania will change your life it is one of the best things about Albania. With its rugged mountains, charming villages, sweeping valleys, amazing views and lush green forests, your Albanian hiking journey will bring you euphoric moments and cherished memories.

Albania hiking trails are extensive, and contain some of the best hiking in the Balkans. You can either choose to book a tour and gain access to your very own tour guide or head out with your friends on a self-guided tour! There are a total of 5 incredible hikes in Albania that every hiker should experience while visiting.

5 Best Hikes in Albania - Hiking in Albania 101, Hikers standing atop rocky peak of mountain with taller mountains behind whose peaks are shrouded in grey clouds

These Albania hikes will take you through some of the most beautiful scenery in the country from rivers to mountain peaks and gorges and everything in-between.

This blog post will provide tips on how to plan your Albania hikes, what to bring with you, as well as going in-depth about each hike.

So let’s explore some of the most picturesque and exhilarating hikes in Albania and trekking routes – and maybe even talk about the best hike in Albania!

Discover Albania best hikes, hiking trail markings on a grey and brown tree in forest area with tree roots and gravelly stones covering the ground and more trees in the background

Is Hiking in Albania Safe?

Yes. Albania is a safe country to visit, and it’s safe to hike alone. It’s relatively easy to hire a personal guide who can be your eyes on the ground if you are not comfortable with hiking by yourself.

Keep in mind that if you go into hiking trails in Albania that are not so popular, there are wild bears and dogs. However, it’s not so common for tourists to be bumping into them. But it is a good idea to keep this in mind!

The bears mostly live in dense forests right in the north of Albania, and into Kosovo. So if you want some bear-free walking in Albania, head to the southern Albania!

Experience the best hiking in Albania, hiking trail path leading off into grassy terrain with green bushes and snow-covered mountains in the distance

What is the Best Season to Go Hiking in Albania?

That’s a great question! The best time of year to go hiking in Albania is during spring, April to June, or in Autumn, which starts in September and ends in November as this is when you will find the best weather conditions.

Why? Well, December through March is when they have their harsh winters, and trekking in Albania becomes a whole lot more difficult.

The temperature can get as low as -9°C (15°F), and there may be snow on the ground that could make it hard for you to trek through the dirt roads with your hiking boots.

And if you’re going in the summer months (July or August) then those are months where it’s mostly hot weather.

This means sometimes that people might not want to take their Albania hike at this time, because of the high temperatures which become overwhelming.

🧳 MUST-HAVE: Before you head out on your trip, make sure you have travel insurance. My #1 recommendation is SafetyWing!

It's time to go trekking in Albania, person sitting on large rock perched on hillside looking out towards trees and rocks that line the side of a tall mountain in the distance

The Best Albania Hiking Tours to Do

If you don’t feel comfortable hiking alone in Albania, there are plenty of guided tours that you can do instead. Check out the best hiking tours in Albania here.

What Should I Pack for my Hike in Albania?

Hiking in Albania can be an incredible experience, but it is important to pack the right equipment. Do not forget your water and backpack!

You will also need a camera or mobile phone with GPS if you want to take pictures of the scenery.

Bring clothes that are durable for hiking up hills as well as dry quickly – this includes technical clothing made from synthetic materials like polyester (or other quick-dry fabrics).

Don’t forget sun protection! Make sure you have enough food before leaving home so that you don’t end up starving when out exploring either.

Pack light snacks such as dried fruit or nuts which are easy.

List of packing items I recommend:

Now that you’re prepared, let’s discuss the best 5 trails for hiking in Albania.

📦 PACKING TIP: Don’t leave home without a solar powered battery pack so you can keep your devices connected at all times.

Enjoy the most breathtaking hiking in Albania, long and winding river snaking its way through a green valley that runs alongside a tall range of rocky snow-capped mountains under a cloudy blue sky

1. Theth-Valbona Hike

Distance: About 10.5 miles or 17 km

Hours: 6-8 hours

Difficulty level: Medium

Theth to Valbona is the most popular hike in Albania and the most spectacular, crossing a vast mountain range.

It is an astonishing experience that will take your breath away at every turn!

You’ll climb through woodland, past high mountain meadows and up into dramatic areas of limestone cliffs before descending down to the green Valbona Valley.

This Valbona Pass hike takes from 6-8 hours depending on how many times you want to stop for photos, and trust me, that will be a lot! After all, it’s considered the best hiking in Albania for a reason.

The times will also depend on where your accommodation is from the trail. If you stay at a lodge that’s far from the trail, you may want to consider getting a ride to the start to cut some time off the end.

The nearest accommodation to the start of the trail in Theth is Guest House Gjelaj or Marash Rrgalla Guesthouse.

And the nearest accommodation option to the trail starting in Valbona is Hotel Margjeka.

This hotel was so amazing and they also have one of the best restaurants in Valbona so it’s a great place to stay if you need a hearty bite to eat before or after the hike!

Follow the best Albania trekking routes, sandy beach lined with sun loungers in front of a turquoise blue sea with various boats moored, all surrounded by tall green hills leading off into the distance

2. Kakome to Krorez Hike

Hours: 1.5 – 2 hours

Difficulty level: Easy/Medium

If you’re looking for hike which takes you to pristine beaches, this is the hike for you!

This is one of the best locations for hiking in Albania and it has some of the best views in all of Albania. It is relatively easy and takes you through some of the most beautiful scenery along the Albanian Riviera.

The Kakome to Krorez hike takes about 2 hours to complete and is a beautiful walk that hugs the coast.

The coastal trail takes you through forests, past bunkers and even 2 monasteries before reaching Krorez beach on the other side of the mountain

You will have to catch a taxi or drive your car to the entrance of Kakome gate. You will see a big closed gate blocking the entrance to the beach.

It is safe to leave your car on the side of the road there.

This long hike follows a trail uphill, first going past one of the oldest monasteries in Albania, the Monastery of Saint Mary.

This peaceful setting is a great stopover before continuing uphill towards the beach of Krorez.

Once you have had a wander around then continue to follow the trail which leads uphill and hugs the side of the mountain.

You will reach a second monastery – Manastiri i Krorzes and from there you will descend down to the beach.

📸 PRO TIP: My go-to camera for all my travels is the Sony A7iii – I highly recommend it!

Discover the amazing albania trails, overhead shot of water tumbling over a waterfall into a lush green lagoon next to rocks and green foliage

3. Hike to the Blue Eye from Theth

Distance: 12 miles

Difficulty level: Easy/Medium

Visiting the Blue Eye is a great thing to do for the day, and one of the most rewarding hikes in Albania.

The hike takes around 3 hours and is easy/medium difficulty but as this hike is quite a long way from the main villages, you will get to explore so much of Albania’s nature. If you’re visiting Theth, then you really cannot miss out on this Albanien hiking experience.

You can walk all the way there which takes about 3 hours or you can take a 4×4 to the entrance of the hike and then walk the last 45 minutes to the Blue Eye.

I loved walking the whole trail as parts of the trail had so many spectacular views along the way.

Fun fact: many American tourists looking to hike Trailsday hikes in June choose to visit the Blue Eye on these Albania trails!

Enjoy the scenery whilst backpacking Albania, waterfall pouring into clear rocky lagoon with moss-covered rock walls

4. Hike to Theth Waterfall

Hours: 45 minutes from Theth church

Difficulty level: Easy/Medium

The Theth waterfall hike is one of the best places to go hiking in Albania, and it is one of the easiest to finish with a lot of flat terrain – perfect for a laid back Albania walking holiday!

You can find the waterfall in Theth National Park.

This quick hike is great if you want to explore the local area of Theth and only have an afternoon as it takes approximately 45 minutes to get to the waterfall.

Treking Albania on this route is highly rewarding: once you do reach the waterfall your breath will be taken away.

📚 P.S. Grab access to my Travelling Albania Guide on Amazon to get a comprehensive insight into the best places to visit in Albania (including secret spots that are not recommended in the usual guides!)

5. Peaks of the Balkans Trail

Sometimes the best hiking trails take you to amazing places, and on this route you’ll get to experience spectacular mountains and more!

The peaks of the Balkans trail goes through 3 countries in total – you’ll be hiking in Albania, hiking in Kosovo and finally hiking in Montengro.

The route is approximately 192km long, and is one of the most challenging multi day hikes Albania has to offer.

A full traverse takes around 10- 13 days depending on how fast you would like to do it and how long you would like to stay in each place.

If you prefer doing a guided version of this hike, then this tour is a great one to take!

With the peaks of the Balkan trail, you will stay in each of these places along the way depending on where you would like to start/finish:

  1. Theth, Albania
  2. Valbonë, Albania
  3. Çerem, Albania
  4. Dobërdol, Albania
  5. Milishevc, Kosovo
  6. Reka e Allagës, Kosovo
  7. Liqinat i Kuçishtës, Kosovo
  8. Babino Polje, Montenegro
  9. Plav, Montenegro
  10. Vusanje, Montenegro

You can find more in-depth information about the Balkans hiking trail on this website.

This hike is definitely for those who are more comfortable with hiking and have a little more experience than the average person.

But the Balkans hiking trail is definitely a once in a lifetime opportunity and experience and some of the best mountains in Albania!

Even More Hikes in Albania!

Hikes are a great way to explore the natural and cultural beauty of this country.

There are some really interesting hikes in Albania, with stunning views that will make you want to keep exploring for days at a time.

There are plenty of other hikes to explore in Albania too that I have not mentioned in this post which covers other regions within the county.

There are more great Albania hiking routes in the north, in south Albania and even in central Albania, such as the Gamti mountain hike which can be reached easily if you’re hiking Tirana and the surrounding area.

One of the other most popular hikes in Albania is Mount Çika hike in Llogara National Park.

This is a mountainous area in Albania and is truly beautiful!

If you have other Albania best hikes to add to this list, let me know down below!

Frequently Asked Questions

✅ Is Albania good for hiking?

Yes it is! Albania has all kinds of terrain – from valleys and rivers to snowy mountain peaks – for hikers to explore.

✅ Which countries are on the Balkan peaks trail?

The peaks of the Balkans trail passes through Albania, Kosovo and Montenegro. It is considered to be one of the most beautiful hikes in Europe.

✅ What is the best month to hike in Albania?

To get the best weather without baking under the hot summer sun, hikes in Albania are best made in the month of September.

Other articles you will love:

Love this post? Pin it for later!

Sharing is caring!

Leave a Comment

The Comments

  • George
    August 9, 2021

    Anita, Thank you for the great article! Also the link to the trail system called the “Peaks of the Balkans”. I am in New Hampshire right now and will be headed back to Saranda hopefully by mid October.
    Look forward to seeing you and possibly organizing some hikes of those sections of the trail especially in Kosovo.
    I hope you are having a great summer season and say Hi to everyone at the Anchor bar!

  • Ines Bradesko
    August 9, 2021

    Hi. I have two questions 😉
    First is about the Kakome to Krorez trail – is it marked in any way and do you maybe have time to go with me in september?:)
    The second one is – do you know any guides that would go with me to Mount Cika or at least if the path is marked from Llogara?
    Thank you

  • Bryson Fico
    August 20, 2021

    Thank you for the very well-detailed post on hiking trails in Albania. I did not expect the trails to be so well-groomed. Your photographs inspired me to plan an outdoor vacation to Albania.

  • Mads
    May 11, 2022

    Loved your tips. Just wanted to add something about the Valbona theth trek!

    I would like to suggest adding a paragraph that in the summer this is a good trek one can do without a guide but the pass is not always accessible. In spring for example (may and sometimes June) it’s really important to check whether one can pass the pass and whether there is snow. If the latter is the case do not attempt without a guide and proper equipment, nor attempt the “summer route”. There is a winter route which is not without risks and safer than the summer route. Yesterday a Swiss tourist died by taking the wrong route without a guide. We just did the winter route with a guide and we’re glad we bumped into others and therefore had 3 guides to help us to the top. I think it’s important we inform fellow travelers well.