Sign up to create your custom IntoAlbania trip
Your account has been activated!
Hailed as the Thailand of Albania, the pristine Shala River and its surroundings are a spectacular summer alternative to the Riviera and other coastline favorites.
Known for its clear aquamarine waters, Shala River’s popularity has sky rocketed in the last few years with more locals looking to the north for their summer fun. Perfect for swimming, Shala River is surrounded by a spectacular landscape and amazing caves. Take a dip inside the caves is a must!
The 37 km-long Shala River flows from its source at Radohina Peak, part of the Albanian Alps, locally known as Bjeshkët e Namuna (Accursed Mountains). The river flows into the wonderous Koman Lake, another favorite among local and international tourists. In fact, because of their proximity, the two are often linked via water ferries. If you take the ferry, keep in mind that most people who have experienced it cannot stop talking about it. So prepare to be amazed and annoy your friends after this trip!
Because of its location in the northern mountains, the air around Shala River as well as its waters are super crisp and invigorating. A splash here is decidedly different than one in the sizzling southern Riviera. Nonetheless, though the winters are harsh in this region, the summers are surprisingly mild and pleasant so it never gets cold. The Shala Valley, located entirely within the geological zone of the Albanian Alps, is also characterized by a lot of black limestone. Just something to keep in mind as you enjoy the spectacular view!
Tours to Shala River generally include overnight stays in some of the area’s hospitable and cozy guesthouses. The hosts are wonderful and will help guide your around the area should you visit the area by yourself and not as part of a tour. The food served in the guesthouses includes homemade delicious dairy products, oils and breads. But, don’t leave without trying the famous river trout!
Due to its rise in popularity in recent years, accommodation availability is not always guaranteed. While for most adventurers this is no big deal (they prefer camping, anyway!), for those who prefer to stay in, make sure that you reserve your room ahead of time via your preferred tour operator or by yourself.
The largest bookstore chain in Albania handpicks the must-reads of summer 2020. Compiling a summer reading list is one of the most challenging tasks when it comes to vacation preparation. Up there with picking the right destination and booking the room with a view, selecting which books to take with you, or upload to your [...]
Vacationing has definitely changed this year so IntoAlbania pitches in to offer some inspiration for a fun and safe summer in the country. All we can think about in the warm summer months is how to best spend them before they end. Some of us may have already planned our vacations while others are more [...]
Its stunning mountains and beautiful landscape guarantee that you will find an amazing variety of plants in Kukës. Besnik Hallaçi, a biologist and the director of the Administration of Protected Areas in Kukës, has selected 10 of the oldest and most unique plants of the area for IntoAlbania. This perennial herbaceous plant, is found in [...]
Entrance nr. 18 on Him Kolli St. in Tirana will be, from now on, not only the newest publishing house for Albanian up-and-coming authors but an ideal workspace where everything is about books. Let’s begin with the name of this new cultural hotspot: Berk. If it sounds a lot like “book,” that’s because it coincidentally [...]
With the looks and climate of Scandinavian fjords, Lake Koman is a nearly otherworldly retreat, nestled among green-covered hills in the northern part of the country. The north of Albania has been enjoying well-deserved accolades from international and local tourists in the last few years. It is slowly but surely claiming its rightful place at [...]
With the Coronavirus pandemic locking everyone in, IntoAlbania thought to get some of the country’s travel bloggers and curious explorers talking about their most memorable destinations. Here is what they had to say. The self-proclaimed “Alberican” (i.e. Albanian-American) travel photographer has chosen this off-the-beaten path site as her top most memorable destination: “Finally got to [...]
While the Coronavirus pandemic kept everyone safely locked inside their homes, IntoAlbania launched the #IntoAlbaniaTravelsInTime campaign in May to celebrate our readers’ favorite travel memories around the country and to keep them looking forward to their summer vacations. Among the great contenders, there were some expected destinations (many people were missing the Riviera!), some more [...]
Lately, IntoAlbania has been sharing the charming videos of Ben Washburn, the American young man who stayed in Albania during the pandemic and really enjoyed it. If you haven’t had the chance to meet him, let us have the pleasure of introducing him. He loves so many things about Albania that he has chosen to [...]
Two months have passed since Albania’s total lockdown due to Coronavirus and, with the opening of various businesses and public services in the last few weeks, it is the turn of the leisure and recreational facilities to slowly and cautiously open their doors. Below, a brief overview of some rules and regulations. Every bar and [...]