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Larissa Olenicoff, aka “The Blonde Gypsy”, is one of the most popular travel bloggers in the Balkans. Thanks to her instagram page and her website, “The Blonde Gypsy” travel stories and features are becoming a source of inspiration for many people to visit Albania. That is why we decided to do a Favorite 10 edition about Albania with her. Check it out:
Tirana. It’s chaotic, yet so cool and calm at the same time. It’s grown so much into a cosmopolitan capital since I first visited seven years ago and what you can’t find in the city, you can find only a short distance away (the sea, lakes, caves, castles, mountains).
Shkodra. There’s a lot of cultural history in this town as well as one of my favorite museums, the Marubi National Museum of Photography. Rozafa Castle and its view of Lake Shkodër, the Buna and the Albanian Alps are also unmissable for any visitor in my opinion.
From the tip of the Karaburun Peninsula to Llogora. This entire stretch to me is like heaven on earth with its sea caves, aquamarine beaches, hidden lagoons, and lush forests all within such a condensed area.
Elbasan Tave, the OG kind with lamb (because I’ve been seeing it more and more with beef and that’s just not right).
I’ve heard Theth is just amazing, but I haven’t been there myself yet so I’ll go with its Albanian Alps sister, Valbona. That whole valley is really spectacular for hiking or just escaping to for some peace and quiet. It’s also easier to get to Komani Lake from there and take a boat ride, another magical experience to be had in Albania.
Raki. End of story.
Too many places to name but special mention goes to Palasë Beach circa 2015. It is the northenmost beach along the Albanian Riviera (Ionian strip) just below Llogora Pass and there used to be not much there except a beach hut or two and campers, but sadly it’s been developed into some fancy resort + villas over the past couple of years. I’m sure it’s a sexy place, but not worth the destruction of the coastline and I will always miss the ruggedly beautiful version of it…
Korça. Though the number of visitors have been growing steadily over the past few years, I still think not enough tourists are including it on their itinerary which is a shame. It is one of the cutest, coziest little towns in Albania with an incredible amount of culture to experience and so much to see both in town and in its surroundings.
Noel Bar which is hidden below Pedonale in Tirana. This is literally a home away from home for me and its owners (Maya & Miri) like my Albanian parents. If you want to experience some real soul in Tirana, this is where you need to come for some raki and tasty qofte (but not on a Sunday, they are closed).
Berat. With its “1,000 windows”, awesome Osum river and perfectly placed castle, I think Berat may be the most photogenic town in the country with its UNESCO sister Gjirokaster as a close second.
A local and international favorite to this day, Radio appeared out of the blue a decade ago to usher in a new era for Tirana’s nightlife. Using the classic typewriter Olympia situated at the entrance of Radio Bar, one of its many regular customers has typed out “Veni, vidi, vici.” A fitting message in the [...]
This October’s events add even more color and flavor to the already dazzling month! The calendar offers plenty of cultural activity, particularly in the first half of the month. You’ll have the chance to attend some of the best classical music events (some of them are even free of charge!), a rare and very old [...]
Gelateria Çela, perhaps the most famous ice cream shop in the country, is a requisite stop for all of those who visit Durrës. A visit to the sea-side town cannot be considered complete without getting a taste of the fresh gourmet concoction that is Çela’s ice cream. Reaching this level of popularity in a town [...]