Albania, the unexplored Europe!
Albania, the land of Mediterranean sandy coasts with pine forests, hospitality and variety. While driving through this varied landscape you will notice that this country has much more to offer than you think at first! During a typical Ryce Travel tour, you will pass through old historic towns and really get to know the Albanian people. Many people immediately think, when talking about Albania, of the (somewhat dark) historical side. After years of occupation by various empires and a communist dictatorship, the traces of the past can still be seen everyday in Albania. All with all, a country for someone who wants to explore the adventurous and unexplored side of Europe!
Albania borders Montenegro, Kosovo, North-Macedonia and Greece. In the west is a beautiful coast; the Adriatic coast. This unique beach is littered with luxury hotels and plenty of pine forests, perfect for family- and friends vacations. Inlands, you can imerge yourself in the mountainous and varied landscape full of historic towns and buildings. Due to the combination of sea and mountains, the land was difficult to reach for enemies in ancient times, with the result that villagers started to live on their own way. Therefor, the people in these villages developed their own rules and traditions over the years, which can still be seen when traveling around the country!
Sun, Sea and Beach all year through?
Both in summer and winter, the temperature in Albania with its Mediterranean climate is very pleasant. In summer, on the coast, temperatures rise between 30 and 20 degrees and drop between 0 and 10 degrees in winter. Just like the landscape, the climate is very varied. It is possible that it is snowing in the mountains, while in the coastal area the sun is shining! The mountainous regions of Albania have harsh winters and offers, especially in the higher areas, the opportunity to enjoy snowboarding or skiing.
The people of Albania are very poor in comparison with their neighboring countries. Fortunately, that doesn’t stop the residents from being super hospitable to their guests. Albanians are known for their hospitality and would prefer to invite you for coffee everytrime you visit them! Albania has about 3 million inhabitants, which the majority of the population ethnic Albanian (82.6%). Furthermore, several ethnic minorities live together in this country, such as the Montenegrins, Kosovars and Macedonians.
The long history of Albania in a nutshell
The country has a long and dark history. From the very beginning, Albania was a sought-after piece of land by various empires. The Romans and Ottomans have left their marks everywhere. The country was at its darkest point during its Communistic era. It was once the most isolated country of Europe during this time. Many people even compared it to the North Korea of Europe! This was partly due to the arrival of Enver Hoxha, a dictator who seized power through systematic extermination and pushed communism upon the population. All with all, not a good thing for Albania… After the fall of communism, Albania is still trying to crawl out of a still deep well after all these years.
Tourism Rycing-Up in Albania
Partly due to communism, the country has been lagging behind in the field of tourism for many years. This can be seen in everything when traveling in the country. The roads are sometimes very bad, public transport takes relatively long and sometimes facilities are missing or things are just a little different from what you are used to. By working together with local entrepreneurs in Albania in particular, we try to give just that little bit of extra push to boost tourism in Albania. Fortunately, there is light at the end of the tunnel for Albania. The Albanians are (literally) working hard on the road to attract tourists to their country and via this way to crawl out of that deep pit a little faster!