Where to go - Good to know

Via Dinarica

The Via Dinarica is a mega-trail that extends through the entire Dinaric Alps from Slovenia to Albania up to North of Macedonia, eager to join the community. Avery Stonich from National Geographic has named it as one of the best new destinations in the world for 2017. Avery simply described the product as follow: That’s almost 2,000 km route along the spine of the Dinaric Alps throughout the Balkan peninsula. Combining a network of old shepherd paths, strategic war routes, established trails, and new connections, it weaves through dramatic limestone karst fields, high mountains, steep valleys, dense beech forest, shimmering Alpine lakes, and the Tara River Canyon, Europe’s deepest, which plunges over 1,300 meters.

Strategically wedged between Asia and Western Europe, the Balkans are a historical crossroads. Along the Via Dinarica, shepherd houses share hillsides with war memorials, medieval gravestones, stone fortresses, and crumbling foundations—remnants of Illyrians, Romans, Slavs, Ottomans, Austro-Hungarians, and Serb kingdoms. In their wake, Orthodox monasteries, Muslim mosques, and Catholic churches now stand as a testament to the multicultural influences in the region. For travelers, the Via Dinarica offers off-the-beaten track adventure. For this complicated region, the trail offers hope.

. Envie d'Albanie . Envie d'Albanie

High Scardus Welcome to the Balkans newest

long-distance hiking and mountain biking trail. It’s an extension of the Via Dinarica that connects Albania, Kosovo and North Macedonia along theirs shared border. The cross-border route follows a 495 kilometer long main trail intersected by a much greater network of secondary trails that provide alternative options as well countless access/exit points to the main path. On route you cross six national parks and various mountain ranges, peaking out at 2.756 meters on Mount Korab, the high point ofboth Albania and North Macedonia.

Completing the entire route from its northernmost point near the Macedonian capital of Skopje till the southernmost point at Lake Prespa takes a full 20 days. Thru-hikers may tackle the entire trail, while most will pick a multi-day section or visit on a day walk. It’s equally suited for mountain bikers seeking a single trail experience in one of the wildest ranges of the Balkans.

The High Scardus Trail can be walked in both directions from South to North and in reverse. Note that sections above 2.000 meters are snow covered from November till May, while the lower sections can be walked also in spring.

Dibër Trails & Traditions

Thanks to the “Tourism as a Leading Edge” Program, in March 2017, the Albania Local Capacity Development Foundation partnered with the Municipality of Dibër and the Local Action Group, Dibër Turistike, to implement “Dibër: Trails & Tradition” (D2T), a $750,000

grant funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development and the Swedish International Development Agency.

The three-year project’s aim is to develop sustainable tourism in the Dibër region of Albania by focusing on its three strategic objectives:

1) to strengthen the enabling environment;

2) to increase the workforce capabilities; and,

3) to design, develop and promote integrated agritourism products.

By April 2020, D2T envisions an

increase in employment and incomes based on an increased number of tourists in Dibër and the quality of their experience. 

Through partnerships with

businesses and local government, the project works on: developing and marketing eco-friendly, natural, cultural, and agro-tourism attractions, such as hiking and biking trails; to improve traditional guesthouses and villages;  to introduce self-sustaining energy and waste management systems; to improve tourist infrastructure and train local tour guides.

Peaks of the Balkans

In order to create income for local population, stop abandonment of the mountain region of Kosovo, Montenegro and Albania and to bring these parts of the region closer together, the national and local tourism organization and hiking clubs joined forces with the German Development Cooperation to develop “The Peaks of the Balkans” regions as one destination for mountain tourism. With the development of a transnational hiking trail, one of only few in the world, a common base for further development was set up.

The transnational ”Peaks of

the Balkans” leads through one of the remote and wild mountainous region of Western Balkans. By using shepherd paths and footways, the trail winds through high alpine mountains up to 2300 meters above the sea level and leads through mountains scenery, with a diversity of breathtaking landscapes, varying from green valley to crystal-clear mountain lakes, waterfalls, river and remote picturesque mountains village, in which time seems to have stopped. All in all a “hidden treasure” for nature lover and hikers. Until twenty years ago, the region had been almost inaccessible for visitors, which make it an authentic cultural experience and adventure to hike across the three mountains Albania, Kosovo and Montenegro.

The world's newest transnational hiking experience the Peaks of the Balkans Trail is a winner in the prestigious global awards. The 192-kilometre signposted Trail winds through the remote and unspoilt mountainous regions of Albania, Kosovo and Montenegro in the Southern end of the Dinaric Alps in South East Europe. The Trail was born of a passion to preserve

the cultural, natural and spiritual heritage of these communities, linking them together to create a rare journey for both local inhabitants and for visitors.

Via Ferrata

A via ferrata (Italian for

"iron path", plural vie ferrate or in English via ferratas) is a protected climbing route found in the Alps and certain other locations. The term "via ferrata" is used in most countries and languages except notably in German-speaking regions, which use Klettersteig—"climbing path" (plural Klettersteige).

There is a via ferrata in Rugova MountainsKosovo. It is located four kilometres from Peja city. The road starts from Queen's Cave and need two hours to finish. It was built in 2013. This is unique in the Balkans.[31]

In Kosovo the first Via Ferrata was built in 2013 and then extended in 2014. It is called Via Ferrata Ari. Its construction was supported by the Italian experts. The Via Ferrata is around 100 meters vertical and the whole trail is around 3 kilometers.

The Second Via Ferrata was built in Northern Kosovo in the municipality of Zubin Potok it is called Via Ferrata Berim. The third Via Ferrata is built next to the Via Ferrata Ari and it is called Mat Via Ferrata. This goes parallel to the first one.

Via Egnatia

The Via Egnatia was an important part of the Roman road network mainly because it connected Rome with Constantinople (modern day Istanbul). It became a lifeline between the Western and Eastern parts of the huge Empire. The need for such a road arose with the Roman expansion towards the east. At the time before the road existed, there was no infrastructure in the newly conquered provinces and communication with Rome was hard. According to some written accounts, the construction of the road began in 145 BC, under the supervision of Gnaeus Egnatius, the newly appointed governor of the province of Macedonia. The road took the name of its builder. Via Egnatia begins on the eastern shore of the Adriatic Sea, near the ancient port of Dyrrachium (modern-day Durres, Albania) and it lays directly opposite Brindisi, at the end of Via Appia. Via Appia was one of the oldest and most prestigious roads in the ancient Roman Empire which connected Rome to Brindisi, on the western shore of the Adriatic. The road then followed the River Genussus (Shkumbin) and went over Jablanica Mountain, from where it descended to the shores of Lake Lychnitis (today named Lake Sevan) and it passed near the ancient town of Lychnidos (modern-day Ohrid, Macedonia). From here, the road turns south and goes over a few high mountain passes before continuing east, passing through Pella (the ancient capital of the kingdom of Alexander the Great). Then Via Egnatia reaches the northern coastline of the Aegean Sea at the city of Thessalonica. From Thessalonica, the road went all the way to Constantinople (Istanbul). This route is a total distance of around 695 miles.