We will visit in Skopje:
- Kale Fortress
- The Church of the Holy Saviour
- The Monastery of St. Panteleimon
- The Church of St. Sofia
- St. Clement Church
- St. Naum Monastery
- The Fortress
- The Onufri’s Museum
- The Leaden Mosque
- King’s Mosque
- Bachelor’s Mosque
- Alvati Teke
- The Ancient City of Butrinti
- Temple of Aesculapius
- The Baptisery
- Gate with Towers
- The Fortress
- The National Weapon‘s Museum
- The Amphitheater
- The Roman Thermal Baths
- The City walls from Byzantium time
- The Citadel (Rotonda, Torre)
- Panoramic tour of Durres
- The Statue of Gjergj Kastrioti – Scanderbeg
- Tabakeve’s bridge
- Palace of Culture
- Mosque of Haxhi Et’hem Bey
- Sahati (Clock) Tower
- Panoramic tour of Tirana
- The Castle
- The Scanderbeg’s Museum
- The Old Bazaar
- Rozafa Fortress
- The Catholic Church
Hotels offered on HB
- Zagreb: Hotel International 4* or similar – 1 night
- Skopje: Hotel Holiday Inn 4* or Stone Bridge – 1 night
- Ohrid: Hotel Millenium Palace 4* or similar – 2 nights
- Vlore: Hotel Vlora International 5* or similar – 1 night
- Saranda: Hotel Santa Quaranta 5* or similar – 3 nights
- Durres: Hotel Arvi 4* or similar – 1 night
- Tirane: Hotel Sky 4* – 1 night
- Budva: Hotel Queen of Montenegro 4* or similar – 1 night
- Riviera Makarska: Hotel Biokovo 4* or similar – 1 night
- Bled: Hotel Park 4* or similar – 1 night
Departure from Stuttgart. Arrival late in the evening in Zagreb, accommodation, dinner & overnight at 4* hotel, city center.
After breakfast departure to Skopje (Shkup). Short brakes along the road, accommodation & dinner overnight at 4/5* hotel in the city center.
Our local guide will meet the group after the breakfast. We take a sightseeing tour of the city, including the Kale Fortress, the Church of the Holy Saviour with its iconostasis and fine example of traditional walnut woodcarving, the Old Bazaar and the Stone Bridge. We drive to the slopes of the Vodno Mountain where we visit the Monastery of St. Panteleimon with its 12th century iconostasis and frescoes ranking among the highest achievements of Byzantine art. Free time for lunch. In the afternoon departure to Ohrid.
Dinner overnight in one of the hotels along the promenade. Free time to enjoy the city on your own.
Skopje: is the capital and largest city of the Republic of Macedonia with about a third of the total population. It is the country's political, cultural, economic, and academic centre. It was known in the Roman period under the name Scupi. The territory of Skopje has been inhabited since at least 4000 BC; remains of Neolithic settlements have been found within the oldKale Fortress that overlooks the modern city centre. On the eve of the 1st century AD, the settlement was seized by the Romans and became a military camp. When the Roman Empire was divided into eastern and western halves in 395 AD, Scupi came under Byzantine rule from Constantinople.
Enjoy a full day at the lakeside resort of Ohrid, a UNESCO World Heritage listed site. Thanks to the work of St. Clement and St. Naum, the famous ‘Ohrid Literary School’ was founded here and thus the first pan-Slavic University in Europe. The sightseeing tour includes the Church of St. Sofia from the 11th century, with its magnificent Byzantine fresco paintings the pre-eminent mediaeval monument in Macedonia, and then St. Clement Church with its icon of The Annunciation. Accommodation at hotel. In the afternoon, a short drive takes us to St. Naum Monastery, built on the shores of Lake Ohrid in 900 A.D. and dedicated to the Slavic missionary and educator St. Naum of Ohrid. We return to hotel.
Tonight the dinner will be offered in a typical restaurant in the village of Vevcan
Ohrid is a city on the eastern shore of Lake Ohrid in the Republic of Macedonia. It has about 42,000 inhabitants, making it the seventh largest city in the country. The city is the seat of Ohrid Municipality. Ohrid is notable for having once had 365 churches, one for each day of the year and has been referred to as a "Jerusalem". The city is rich in picturesque houses and monuments, and tourism is predominant. It is located southwest of Skopje, west of Resen and Bitola, close to the border with Albania. In 1979 and in 1980, Ohrid and Lake Ohrid were accepted as a Cultural and Natural World Heritage Sites by UNESCO. In fact, Ohrid is one of only 28 sites that are part of UNESCO's World Heritage that are both Cultural and Natural sites.
After breakfast departure to Albania. After borders formalities meeting with our local guide. Our todays route will be Elbasan - Berat – Vlore.
Berat - It is known as the “City of one thousand windows” and is declared a Museum City”. Berat, overshadowed to the east by Tomorr Mountain 2415 m, and is an ancient Illyrian settlement founded in the 4th & 5th centuries B.C. on the territory of the Illyrian tribe of Desarettes. The town is composed of 3 parts; Gorica, situated on the far side of the river; Mangalem, situated on the fortress side of the river and the Residential quarter within the fortress known as KALAJA. The old part of the city has some religious buildings like mosque and Byzantine churches. The old name of the city was Antipatrea.
A traditional Albanian lunch will be offered at Castle Park restaurant with local traditional food. In the afternoon, on the way to Vlora visit of Ardenica Monastery. Late in the afternoon accommodation & dinner overnight at 5* hotel in Vlora.
This morning we will have a short sightseeing of the most important objects of Vlora like: Sheshi i Flamurit (Flag Square), Pavar'sia (Independence) quarter & after a short brake we will travel through Albanian Riviera to Saranda. Short breaks to enjoy the beautiful sceneries of unspoiled sea & information about the small villages & cities we are passing through.
Saranda - the gateway to the southern Albania, is a small town located between High Mountain and the Ionian Sea. The name Saranda derives from an early Christian monastery dedicated to Santi Quaranta (Forty Saints). Located on the shores of Ionian Sea, in front of Greek island of Corfu, Saranda is characterized by a Mediterranean climate and warm sea waters. Due to its location and warm weather Saranda is one of the most attractive tourist town in Albanian Riviera, where honeymooners traditionally spend their holidays. Located in front of the sea and along the main promenade there are some hotels and restaurants which offer you catering facilities and accommodation. Daily ferryboat link Saranda with the nearby Greek island of Corfu. Free time for lunch.
In the afternoon we will pay a visit to Butrint:
Butrinti - Archaeological Site, perhaps the most romantic archaeological site in Albania. Inhabited since prehistoric times, Butrint has been a Roman city and a bishopric. Following a period of prosperity under Byzantine administration, then a brief occupation by the Venetians, the city was abandoned in the late middle Ages after marshes formed in the area. The present archaeological site is a repository of ruins representing each period in the city's development.
Tonight the dinner will be served at Lekursi’s Castle from where you can enjoy the scenery of the Bay. Late in the evening back to hotel 5*. Free time for personal adventure
Full day to enjoy the sun & sea & fun at hotel’s wonderful beach. Dinner this night will be offered in a private restaurant near the hotel.
Full day on relax on the hotel’s beach. A nice dinner will be offered in one of the best restaurants in Saranda.
Leaving Saranda, we will proceed to another interesting city of Albania, Gjirokastra. On the way visit of Blue Eye.
Gjirokastra - the "Stone City", situated in the southern part of Albania only 1 hour far from Saranda city, on the eastern slope of mountain Mali i Gjere. It is a commercial center in South Albania, it produces foodstuffs, leather, and textiles. There are several 18th-century mosques and churches and an old citadel (rebuilt in the 19th cent.) in the town. Dating probably from the 4th cent., Gjirokastër passed to the Turks in the 15th cent. It was captured (1811) by Ali Pasha and was the center (late 1800s) of anti-Turkish resistance. In World War II it was occupied by Italy, Greece, and Germany in succession. What strikes the visitors most in Gjirokastra are its typical and characteristic houses which resemble little fortresses, clustered one above the other. Their exterior combines roughness with the beauty of windows, small rooms and light pillars supporting the roofs protruding from the walls. The most attractive feature is the stone which has been masterfully elaborated by the builders. Once Gjirokastra has been called the "city of one thousand steps" or "the stone city".
Free time for lunch. In the afternoon arrival in Durres ,accommodation at 4* hotel on the promenade of Durres. Dinner overnight & free time to enjoy this nice city.
This morning we will start our program to pay a visit to Durres:
Durres - One of Albania's oldest cities, the country's main sea port, the second largest industrial center after Tirana. Durres lies on a small peninsula on the coast of the Adriatic Sea. The city was colonized by the Greeks in 627 B.C. It was named Epidamnos, which later became Dyrrachium. From the Venetian Tower at the harbor the Medieval Town Wall leads to the amphitheater (capacity 15,000 spectators) dating back to the 2nd century AD and containing an early Christian Crypt with a rare wall mosaic. Between the 1st and 3rd centuries Durres was an important port and trading center on the Via Egnatia trading route between Rome and Byzantium (Istanbul. Today the city is well known for the nearby beach resort of Durres Plazh, its wonderful sand and warm sea water.
After visits of Dures , departure to Tirana, the capital. City sightseeing of the most important objects of Tirana:
Tirana - The capital of Albania from 1920 enjoys a beautiful setting between the ranges of Dajti Mountain from one side and the coastal plains on the other one. Tirana is 110 m above sea level. It is relatively a new city in respect with old cities of Albania, dating from 1st century BC. The average annual temperatures are in July 24°C and in January 7°C. Tirana’s city superficies is 31 km 2. Tirana is the main political, economical & cultural center of Albania.
Late in the afternoon accommodation at 4* hotel in the very heart of the city. Dinner overnight & free time to enjoy the city on your own.
After the breakfast, we will travel towards Kruja. We will drive up to Kruja to see this important medieval city in the history of Albania.
Kruja - The historic town of Kruja is located 30 km far from Tirana, 45 Km from Durres & 20 minutes by car from the international Airport of Rinas.The town of Kruja rises 560 meters above sea level, on the slopes of Sari -Salltiku Mountain. It provides to the visitors the great view of majestic landscape and a rich collection of historical and cultural objects. The most important is the castle of Kruja, which was built during the 5th and 6th centuries and has an elliptical shape with a total area of 2.25 hectares. The surrounding walls are reinforced by nine towers, which served as an observation and signaling post during times of war with Ottoman Empire. Within the walls of the castle there can still be found the remains of a few houses.
Free time. About 12.30 transfer to Shkodra.
On the way lunch will be offered at Mrizi i Zanave restaurant, an interesting village restaurant to taste local Albanian food. After lunch will pay a visit to Shkodra, the most important city in the Norther part of Albania. It was known as an old artisan center, as well road and river junction with a considerable transit trade. Shkodra, formerly Scutari, is the third largest town in Albania. It is one of the oldest towns in Europe, having been in the 3rd century B.C. The capital of Illyrian Kingdom of the Ardian, whose queen was the Legendary Teuta. It is situated near the lake sharing the same name and along the road leading to Montenegro. It is an ancient city with a rich history; one can find old characteristic houses where wood and other traditional motifs are used. Near the city of Shkodra there is a castle of Rozafa, built on a rocky hill from where you can see attractive and beautiful views.
In the afternoon we will leave Albania & enter Montenegro. We will travel through small villages to arrive at Budva. Accommodation at 4* hotel, Dinner overnight . After the dinner free time
This morning we will to pay a short visit to Kotor. A break for a couple of hours will be dedicated to Dubrovnik. Round 15.00 midday we will start for Riviera Makarska through highway. Short brakes on the road. In the afternoon arrival in Makarska Riviera, accommodation at 4* hotel, Dinner overnight & free time to enjoy the city on your own.
After the breakfast we will take the highway to go Bled. Along the road short brakes. Arrival in the afternoon, accommodation & dinner over night at 4* hotel along the lake of Bled. Time at leisure.
After breakfast departure to Stuttgart, end of the services.
- Entrance fees:
- Visit of the Castle & Mother Teresa’s museum
- Visit of the Saint Naum , Castle & museum
- Onufri’s Museum & castle in Berat
- Ardenica’s Monastery
- Archaeological site of Butrinti
- Visit of Blue Eye
- Fortress & National Museum of Weapons in Gjirokastra
- Amphitheatre in Durres
- Visit of National Historical Museum in Tirana
- Castle, & Scanderbeg’s Museum in Kruja
- Castle of Shkodra
- Lunches included:
- Castle Park restaurant in Berat
- Mrizi i Zanave restaurant in Fishte