Balkan Explorer Tour – 7 nights – €998.00 per person
This tour is made to discover the ancient relics, churches, monasteries, and mosques, historical sites and beautiful landscapes of the ‘Cradle of the Balkans’: Kosovo, Albania and North Macedonia
Day 1: Pristina Airport –Pristina – Prizren (1hour drive)
We welcome you at Pristina Airport and transfer to Prizren for overnight. Overnight at 4-star Hotel in Prizren Clarification: If your arrival flight is in the evening, the itinerary will remain as it is, but if your arrival flight is in the morning and your return flight is in the morning, the visits on the last day will be transferred to the first day Itinerary.
Day 2: Prizren – Decan Monastery- Peja Patriarchate- Prizren (3.5-hour drive) B – D
After breakfast we continue to the Monastery complex of Decan, part of Kosovo’s UNESCO monuments. It is considered the largest medieval church in the Balkans and contains beautifully preserved fresco decorations. Continue to visit the Patriarchate of Peja constructed in the XIII century. It is composed of three small churches with beautiful frescoes. The complex of churches for its architectural and cultural values it represents is part of UNESCO. After these visits we drive back to Prizren which is known for the arts and crafts something which becomes obvious as soon as you approach the centre, with cobble stone streets, beautifully crafted shops, bars and restaurants, built in a typical Ottoman architecture Stone Bridge and Museum dedicated to the League of Prizren an Albanian political organization founded on January 5, 1877 taking official form on June 18, 1878. The League’s main scope was the protection of the rights of the Albanian nation during the breakup of the Ottoman Empire. It was a crucial step in raising Albanian national awareness, and paving the way to Albania’s Independence in 1912. The Mosque of Sinan Pasha built in 1615 is also a very interesting monument. A welcome dinner in a traditional restaurant in Prizren. Overnight at 4-star Hotel in Prizren
Day 3: Prizren – Gjakova – Koman Ferry –Tirana (approx. 4.5 hours’ drive) B – D
After breakfast we drive to Gjakova a town offering an old quarter called Ҫarshi full of old houses, shops, bars and the 16th century Hadum Aga Mosque. Continue on to Fierza ferry terminal where will take the ferry to Koman on the lake with the same name. A magnificent two hour ride where the beauty of the high pointed mountains falling sharply into the waters of the artificial lake of opal green waters, forms a natural panorama which will leave you gasping for air. After this spectacle of nature drive to Albania’s vibrant capital Tirana where we will have a traditional Albanian dinner. Overnight at 4*Hotel Tirana
Day 4: Tirana – Berat (UNESCO) – Tirana (approx. 3.3 hours’ drive) B
After breakfast take a driven tour of the major monuments and visit the Bunk’Art2, turned into a museum, the huge, anti-nuclear bunker in Center of Tirana, here you will learn about the regime of communism in Albania. Proceed to Berat, one of the most visited and characteristic towns in Albania under the protection of UNESCO as a patronage of humanity for its architectural uniqueness. We visit the Castle people still live within its walls in their traditional houses, as have their ancestors for centuries. The castle used to have over 40 churches of which 7 still remain including. We visit St. Mary’s church turned into Onufri Museum – Onufri was a famous Albanian Icon master painter of the 16th century who painted many orthodox churches in Albania and Greece, using a special red colour. Also visit Ethnographic museum. After the planned visit return for overnight at 4-star Hotel in Tirana
Day 5: Tirana- Lin – St. Naum Monastery-Bay of Bones-Ohrid (UNESCO) (approx. 3.3 hours’ drive) B – D
After breakfast depart to the city of Ohrid in neighbouring North Macedonia. On the way we drive through rural villages with wonderful countryside landscapes. We stop for a short break on some places like: the picturesque village of Lin. A fishing village at the foot of a hill on a peninsula. Lini’s Palafit settlement in Pogradec, the oldest in Europe, was the Center where agriculture, crafts and fishing were developed 8500 years ago. Than continue to Tushemisht, a small village on the shores of Lake Ohrid, this place served as a natural setting for the filming of some of the greatest movies of Albania. As soon as we cross the border of Albania and North Macedonia, we visit: St. Naum Monastery and continues by driving to the Bay of Bones. Afterwards proceed to Ohrid proclaimed UNESCO World Heritage area for its cultural and natural legacy. Overnight in Ohrid at a 4-star Hotel. This evening we will have a Macedonian welcome dinner.
Day 6: Ohrid –Stobi – Popova Kula Winery–Skopje (approx. 4 hours’ drive) B – L
After breakfast we drive to Ohrid upper gate in order to make the planned visits as easy and attractive as possible. Visits include: Saint Sophia, Plashonik, Saint Panteleimon Church, the Holy Virgin of Peribleptos Church, and the old paper printing workshop. Also a panoramic trip with boat to see the best view of the city of Ohrid from the Lake. After this visits in Ohrid grab some quick lunch before we transfer you to visit Stobi archaeological site, the most important excavation in Macedonia. This crossroad of ancient civilizations has left a rich legacy of antique theatres, palace ruins, brightly-coloured mosaics and religious relics for visitors to enjoy today. The city of Stobi is first mentioned in documents from the 2nd century B.C. However, archaeologists believe that the town had been inhabited at least 400 years earlier. Then continue to the famous Popova Kula Winery located just west of the town of Demir Kapija on the slopes of Veliko Brdo, (the Grand Hill). Popova Kula Winery is certainly one of the success stories of Macedonian viticulture and here it is sometimes possible to taste from the fermentation tanks wine varieties such as; Stanushina a local grape variety found only in the Tikves region as well as Temjanika, Zilavka and Vranac grown in the ex-Yugoslavia territories. Late afternoon we will enjoy wine tasting degustation and a late lunch or early dinner, in Popova Kula. Than drive to Skopje which is a modern, political, economic and cultural Center. For Overnight at 4-star Hotel in Skopje.
Day 7: Skopje-Matka Canyon- Gadima Cave- Gracanica Monastery -Ulpiana- Pristina(approx 2.2 hours drive)B
After breakfast we take a walking tour of Skopje by visiting the Macedonia Square with numerous monuments like the monumental statue of Alexander the Great, the Stone Bridge and the old bazaar, memorial house of Mother Teresa (Agnes Gonxhe Bojaxhiu, winner of the Nobel peace in 1979, born in Skopje in 1910), also in 2016 declared a saint by Pope Francis. Then we drive to Matka Canyon, which is situated close to the capital Skopje, in one of the oldest artificial lakes in Macedonia and spreads over 5000 hectares making it one of the most popular natural destinations for nature lovers. It is also referred to as the Butterfly Canyon. Vrelo Cave Located on the right bank of the Treska River, Vrelo Cave was listed as one of the top 77 natural sites in the world in the New7Wonders of Nature project and made it to the semi-finals. Vrelo Cave has many stalactites and two lakes within it making this a very interesting site. Though the exact depth of the cave is unknown, some speculate that it could be one of the deepest underwater caves in the world. Afterward we drive to Gadime Cave, a karst limestone cave also known as Marble Cave. It was discovered by chance by a villager cutting stone in 1966 and remains largely unexplored. After that we proceed to ancient remains of Ulpiana, a roman town in the province of Dardania home top to the Illyrian tribe of Dardanoi, also known as Justiniana Secunda have been unearthed, testimony to Kosovo’s ancient past.Just nearby is Gracanica Monastary, beautifully preserved Orthodox Church of Byzantine architecture founded by King Stefan Milutin in 1321, which is part of the Kosovo Medieval Monuments protected by UNESCO. Proceed to Prishtina the capital city of Kosovo where we check in and overnight at a 4-star Hotel in Pristina.
Day 8: Pristina-Battle of Kosovo-Sultan Murad I Tomb-Pristina International Airport (approx. 45 min drive) B
After breakfast we start with a walking tour of Pristina through the capital exploring its main attractions including: The National Library, Mother Teresa Cathedral, the “New Born” monument which is becoming the symbol of this new state, the main pedestal area known as Mother Teresa Boulevard, the Mother Teresa monument and the Monument of Scanderbeg (Albanian National Hero) as well as Kosovo Government buildings. Just close by we have the old part of Pristina starting with the monument of brotherhood a monument constructed during the Yugoslavian time, the National Museum, The Clock Tower, the Imperial Mosque probably the most beautiful, being the Fatih Mosque dating back in 1460 during the golden era of Sultan Mehmet II. Its huge ceiling domed cupola crowns a splendidly painted floral interior of Arabesque design. After this we visit Battle of Kosovo monument dedicated to the battle of 1389 between a Balkan Alliance force led by prince Lazar against an Ottoman army led by Sultan Murad I. The battle was fierce and both leaders of the armies were killed in battle. Then continue further to visit the monument as well as the Tomb of Sultan Murad I. End of our services, after transfer to Pristina International Airport according to your flight schedule.
EUR 998.00 per person in 1/2 twin/double sharing
Minimum 4 people required
Accommodation in very good standard hotels with breakfast 4*
Terms and conditions
• 30% deposit at confirmation to secure the booking (refundable until 35 days prior to departure)
• Balance to be paid at 35 days prior to departure
• Cancellation is free of charge until 35 days prior to departure
• Afterwards 100% cancellation charges will apply
- Transportation with driver and good condition a/c vehicle / Bus / Minibus according to the itinerary
- Experienced English speaking tour guide for the whole tour (for less than 6 people in the group private or group departures will be only one person a guide/driver)
- Local guides in Albania and North Macedonia (at the sites that are required by law)
- Accommodation in very good standard hotels with breakfast 4* (B stands for breakfast in the daily program)
- 3 Meals dinners (one in each country) (D stands for dinners in the daily program)
- 1 lunch with wine tasting at Popova Kula, North Macedonia (L stands for Lunch/wine tasting in the daily program)
- All Entrance fees of the visits in Kosovo, Albania and North Macedonia
- Toll road payments – Koman ferry ticket for clients and vehicle – depending on the size of the group we can use: Bus / Minibus or vehicle
- Tickets for a panoramic boat trip in Ohrid
- Tickets for boat trip to visit Vrelo Cave in Matka Canyon
- Bottle of water per person per day on bus
- 24/7 assistance from Balkan Destination
- All taxes
- Flight Tickets (After booking the tour, we can also assist you with your flight tickets if you need assistance from us.)
- Boarder taxes between countries. (none exist as of date of completion of this offer)
- Lunches and dinners apart from those mentioned in included
- Gratuities/Tip to Driver, Guide, hotel and restaurant staff.
- Duration : 7 nights
- Contact details : email@example.com