It’s getting ever easier to fly into Albania, with a growing number of international connections. Low-cost carriers provide connections from all over Europe and direct British Airways flights from London can be quite reasonable. You can also fly cheaply to Corfu then get a ferry to Saranda. Visas are not required for citizens of most nations; South Africa is a notable exception.

Greece offers by far the simplest international bus connections – there are daily services to Tirana from Athens and Thessaloniki (from €25), and it’s also possible to get direct buses to a number of other Albanian cities. From Macedonia there are direct services from Skopje to Tirana, via Struga and Elbasan. It is still not straightforward to get here from Montenegro – there are no services from the capital Podgorica, though there is a twice-weekly bus from Budva to Tirana and some unofficial minivans linking Shkodra and Ulcinj.

The most interesting form of arrival is by ferry. Several operators make overnight sailings to Durrës from Bari in Italy, including Ventouris Ferries (from €40; www.ventouris.gr); there are hourly bus connections between Durrës and the capital. It’s also possible to get to Saranda by ferry from Corfu (from €19; www.ionian-cruises.com), with at least two ferries per day making the forty-minute hop.

Essentials

Everything you need to know before you set off.

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Albania features

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7 things you didn't know you could do in Albania

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Albania often doesn’t get the kudos it deserves. The country still suffers from the echoes of its Communist past: few people travelled in or out for decades d…

26 Oct 2016 • Lottie Gross insert_drive_file Article
An Instagram journey through Albania: 11 beautiful pictures

An Instagram journey through Albania: 11 beautiful pictures

During two weeks researching in Albania for the Rough Guide to Europe on a Budget, Web Editor Lottie Gross took over our Instagram account to document her trav…

16 May 2016 • Lottie Gross insert_drive_file Article
10 reasons why you need to visit Tirana

10 reasons why you need to visit Tirana

Albania’s capital used to regularly top lists for Europe's worst city. Decades of Stalinist rule left Tirana grey and grim, lacking in both infrastructure and…

27 May 2015 • Garth Cartwright insert_drive_file Article
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