Albania: From the Illyrians to the Ottomans
22 Apr — 1 May 2020 | Tour Director: Carolyn Perry
• Travel the length of this mountainous country, discovering layers of historical wonders left behind by Illyrians and Greeks, Romans and Ottomans
• Explore the complex of Apollonia, once home to a famous school of oratory, and discover Virgil’s ‘Troy in miniature’ at Butrint
• Delve into the extensive archaeological remains at Antigonea, founded by King Pyrrhus of Epirus in honour of his wife
Chair of the British Foundation for the Study of Arabia
Depart London Gatwick 1650, arriving Tirana 2045. Transfer to Durrës for three nights.
Morning lecture: An Introduction to Albania and the Illyrians. Morning walking tour of Durrës, including forum and amphitheatre. Afternoon: archaeological museum.
Lezhë (Illyrian gate and burial site of Skanderbeg) followed by Rozafa Castle and Shkodër (walking tour including Great Mosque and English clock tower). Evening lecture: Skanderbeg followed by free evening.
Morning visits in Krujë including Skanderbeg Museum, ethnographic museum and Ottoman bazaar. Afternoon in Berat including citadel, Church of St Mary and Onufri Museum (time permitting). Overnight in Berat.
Morning visits in Berat including Mangalemi quarters (King’s mosque and Helveti tekke) and Gorica Bridge, followed by archaeological site at Byllis (walls, agora, theatre, early Christian basilicas). Continue to Gjirokaster for visits to castle and ethnographic museum. Overnight in Gjirokaster.
Antigonea (extensive archaeological site) followed by ‘Blue Eye’ cold water spring. Continue to Saranda for two nights. Evening lecture: The Greeks & Romans in Illyria.
Morning in Butrint: 4th century BC walls, sanctuary to Asklepios, theatre. Afternoon: Ksamil followed by free time in Saranda. Evening lecture: From the Byzantines to the Ottomans followed by free evening.
Scenic drive through ‘Albanian Riviera’ to Porto Palermo Castle. Continue to Vlora for afternoon visits: Mosque of Sinan, Independence Square. Transfer to Fier for overnight stay. Evening lecture: The Long Road to Independence.
Morning: Apollonia Archaeological Park (including agora and museum of Apollonia). Afternoon: Monastery of Ardenica. Continue to Tirana for overnight stay.
Morning visits in Tirana (time permitting) including Skanderbeg Square and National Museum of History. Depart Tirana 1300, arriving Gatwick 1510.
22 Apr — 1 May 2020
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"The sites we visited were amazing as was the explanations our guides gave us, All first class. I would happily go on an ACE tour again."
Recent traveller with Carolyn
Please note this tour has a very full itinerary involving a significant amount of walking, often over uneven and rugged ground. Sites often include a lot of steps and relatively steep inclines, for example to visit castles, and the terrain requires careful negotiation. Participants should therefore have a good level of overall fitness. As our itinerary has been designed to make the very best out of our stay in Albania, we will be undertaking a lot of travel, and there will be a number of hotel changes across the tour.
For customers who wish to make their own travel arrangements, ACE are pleased to be able to offer a flight reduction of:
Cost of £2275 includes: return airfare, accommodation based on sharing a twin or double bedded room, eight lunches (some packed), refreshments on arrival, six dinners with water, wine or beer & coffee, excursions & admissions, gratuities.
Not included: travel insurance, single room supplement £165.