Another Traveller finds the Wonders of Albania with Past and Present Journeys of Albania.

www.pastandpresent.al

Just a quick note to thank you very much indeed for putting together such a great itinerary – I really enjoyed the trip to Albania & got a lot out of it.

The flights out were straightforward with Austrian Airlines behaving themselves – but then I had plenty of time in Vienna for my connection.  The flights back with Lufthansa were also fine.

I was met in Tirana by the hugely enthusiastic Gentian – who had spent 6 years living in Bedford, of all places – and we then drove into Tirana & had a tour of the city.  The hotel Vila Alba was nice & friendly – quiet, too, for such a central location.  Breakfast on the 6th floor terrace in bright sunshine was an absolute treat.

The visit to Ohrid was really interesting – we saw 7 old Zastavas – I mean the really old ones based on the Fiat 600 – that in addition to all the usual Zastavas & other old cars – Macedonia seems to be a haven for old vehicles.  Yes – I know I didn’t go to see old cars.  That was a bonus J

Korça seemed really interesting & it would have been nice to have had some free time in Korça to wander around the city – the itinerary had us arriving at 16.30 but with so much to pack in during the day it is hard to see how that could have been achieved – and as it was we saw the old & new cathedrals & the icon museum the next morning………

Gjirokaster is just a gem of a place & I appreciated having 2 nights in one town – the stop in Sarandë was quite fun & reminded me of my visit to Yalta last year that your colleague Christina put together for me as part of a brilliant trip to Moldova & southern Ukraine – and, of course, Berat is fabulous.

The above completely ignores all the fantastic scenery, the castles & churches – the excellent food & good beer – and generally getting a feel for a country I knew nothing about.  A good example of this is that Edi Rama was being inaugurated the weekend I arrived – I was oblivious to the June elections so had no idea that there was a new prime minister – the OSCE report on the election makes interesting reading………..

The hotels throughout were great; the itinerary worked well; the local guides were good and Past & Present were very good & efficient – overall a great holiday – so thank you very much indeed!

And if any of your future clients need persuading that Albania is great place for a holiday – well, a country that has such friendly people; good food & beer (wines were ok, too); good hotels; great scenery; endless history (if a bit confusing at times) & monuments – plus the “singing trees” in Tirana & Berat (maybe other cities, too) – how could you not go?

Best wishes,
Barnaby