7 Days Trekking in Accursed Mountains of Albania
This walking holiday to the wild north of Albania is probably one of the last great European adventures. You’ll discover the remote of Valbona Valley National park and Theth National Park and meet people who live in a world which is refreshingly disconnected from the rest of Europe.
The Accursed Mountains are spectacular, unspoiled and virtually impenetrable, except for a series of high passes that link the few farmsteads of the exceptionally friendly Albanian Highlanders to the outside world.
This is a truly special European trekking adventure, ideal for the discerning traveler and those seeing a destination that is refreshingly different. A 7 days adventure combining trekking and local living experience that’s why accommodation usually takes place in the homes of the Albanian highlanders, the “Malësorë”, located in small, picturesque villages surrounded by imposing mountains or family-run hotels. You can enjoy this beautiful scenic walk in the Accursed Mountains either with a small group of like-minded travelers or as a private tour, solo or with your friends and family.
Day 1: Arrival day-transfer to Tirana
We are going to start our journey based on the time of your arrival in Tirana. Check in at the hotel at the historical center of Tirana. Free afternoon to explore Tirana at your own pace.
Day 2: Ferry trip at Koman Lake- transfer to Valbona Valley National Park
The ferry from Koman leaves at 9:00 so we will have to get up early and leave Tirana. The ferry trip lasts 3 hours. The Koman lake is as artificial lake built during the communist era to be a power producing station. The view that will accompany you during this journey is wonderful. Situated between mountains in as uninhabitable area, the lake will remind you of seeing the norwegian fjords.
After the ferry trip we will head to the Valbona valley. The road goes accros the Valbona river's bed. Its crystal clear waters comes from the melted snow of the high mountains. Situated 950m above the sea level, the valley is surrounded by mountains over 2300m high. After having lunch you will get accomodated in guest houses which are made of wood and stone based on an alpine style. We have chosen very carefully the guest house because we want it to be appropriate for the hiking trail. In the afternoon we have plenty of spare time to explore the area at your own pace. Overnight in Valbona.
Day 3: Trek the Sheep Trail to Kukaj-eastern Albanian Alps
We will start today's hiking from the inn where we passed the night, heading to Kukaj: an isolated village. The trail to the Rosi mountain goes through the forest and will lead us in the middle of the green alpine fields under its rocky shelter known by the locals aa "Pllana" or "Buni i Brahimit" . This is the ideal place to have a break and enjoy our picnic. The view in front of you is magnificent. We can can see very easily the dramatic peak of "Grykat e Hapta" across the valley also Jezerca which is the highest peak of the albanian alpes.
In this alpine field we can meet and have a conversation with the local shepherds. It is on your choice if this walk continues further reaching the Rosi pass(2000m) which marks the border with Montenegro. After we take a short break in one of the alpine houses in the area we are going back to the inn in Valbona where we are going to have dinner. The whole walk lasts 6 hours but if we go to the Rosi pass it will add another 2 hours to the walk. Overnight in Valbona.
Day 4: Trek to Thethi across the Valbona Pass
Today we will Walk a dramatic trail over the Valbona Pass (1840m) towards the Theth valley. The trail that we will follow is part of a road used by the locals since ancient times. After a while the accend becomes even harder. After we supply ourselves with water at bar "Simoni" we will continue the walk to Valbona pass. The more we go up in the mountain, the more wonderful the view left behind, is going to be.
Valbona pass is 1860 m above the sea level and offers fantastic views of the Radohima Mountains and once again impressive views of Jezerce massive. This pass is walkable only after May when the snow melts. After all this we will continue descend transversly across the steeply angled scree slopes to the meadows and beech forests to Thethi(800m).. We will rest for a nice picnic under the trees. Your luggage will be transported ny mule. In the afternoon we will arrive in yhe village of Theth where we will get accomodated in the alpine houses of the area. Overnight in Theth.
Day 5: Explore Theth National Park
Theth is the most beautiful village of Albania or even further. Situated 800m high and is surrounded by mountains above 2300m high. The village has been totally isolated from civilisation and foreign invaders. This geographical isolation helped the village to conserve the ancient albanian traditions also the catholicism following an old style. This facts have been the reason different writers like Edith Durham, Robert Elsie, etc , have raised the interest to visit Theth .
Visiting Theth in the early 20th century, the traveller Edith Durham said:I think no place where human beings live has given me such an impression of majestic isolation from all the world. Today’s activity will lead ous to the valley attractions Grunas Waterfall, Grunas Canyon, and Blue Eye, A moderate hike is needed to reach this wonderful spring formed by the erosion of the cliff by the river, where some bathtubs and waterfalls are created, which are the most beautiful sights in Albania. Overnight in Theth.
Day 6: Trek to Boge-transfer to Tirana
Enjoy the breakfast at the guest-house and farewell with the locals. We will leave Theth to start another day of spectacular hiking toward the village of Boga. Today we will walk along Sheep Trail (Shtegu I Dhenve), which is another classic path in the Albanian Alps that connects the highlanders of Thethi and Boga. We will walk below the peaks of Radohima mountain before reaching the valley of Boga, then stop for a break in the village.We will have lunch in a lovely setting, then leave through the Boga valley towards Shkoder, passing by Skadar Lake and ending in Tirana capital city. Check in at the hotel and free evening to enjoy the traditional dinner. Overnight in Tirana.
Day 7: Departure Day
End of our service. Our set departure tour do not include the airport transfers, if you wish to book an airport transfer, we will arrange a taxi for you. The price from Tirana to the airport is 35 euro (max 3 pax).