Tucked away along the Adriatic Sea, you'll find a hidden holiday gem - the Albanian Riviera.
Situated away from the tourist hordes, this sun-soaked coastline entices with aquamarine waters, pristine beaches stretching as far as the eye can see, and lovely limestone cliffs plunging into the sea.
Sip espresso at beachside cafes under 150-year-old olive trees, swim among the caves and coves, and hike trails that wind past sleepy villages seemingly untouched by time.
That’s just a part of what this little-known slice of Mediterranean paradise offers you.
Serene beauty of a Mediterranean Beach
(Photo by Bleron on Unsplash)
Here is how to experience the pristine glory of Albanian Riviera-
1. Gjipe Beach
Aerial view of a crowded beach alongside blue waters
(Photo by Renaldo on Unsplash)
The word “Gjipe” is derived from the Albanian word for “peace”. As its name suggests, arrive early in the morning to experience Gjipe’s tranquility all to yourself.
Nestled at the end of a steep cliffside trail, Gjipe Beach is a hidden gem along the Albanian Riviera.
With vistas that look airbrushed and serenity unmatched by larger beaches, Gjipe offers an unspoiled Mediterranean escape. Its remoteness provides a calming reprieve from modern life's busyness.
2. Ancient Dhermi
Huge mountains of Dhermi stretched across
(Photo by Sara on Unsplash)
In Dhermi, you can uncover ancient ruins and natural beauty in just one charming destination.
The most taken route is to hike to the 6th century Monastery of St. Theodore and 4th century BC fortresses for insights into medieval history amidst mountain-top views.
Afterwards, descend to Dhermi's pristine beach, renowned as one of Albania's most beautiful, for a scenic Mediterranean escape.
Stone ruins of an ancient Greek amphitheater
(Photo by Daria on Unsplash)
When the sun goes down, Drymades Beach comes alive with lively beach parties, bonfires, and all-night dance clubs.
Sip local raki cocktails, sway to modern and folk music under the stars, and meet fellow travelers late into the evening.
This sandy shoreline transforms into the Riviera's most vibrant nightlife destination.
4. Ksamil Islands
Top-down view of Ksamil Islands with surrounding emerald green ocean
(Photo by Altin on Unsplash)
Off the coast of Sarandë lies the untouched beauty of Ksamil Islands, a small archipelago with three main islands - St. Nicholas, Basta, and Ksamil - connected by picturesque footbridges.
The Ksamil Islands offer a perfect blend of nature, relaxation, delicious dining, and vibrant nightlife, while retaining a peaceful, remote island feel.
This island paradise often remains unexplored and unknown by the tourists making it one of the most underrated destinations on the Riviera.
So don’t you rather miss it out!
5. Llogara Pass
Aerial view of roads stretching across miles of a green terrain
(Photo by Elion on Unsplash)
Llogara Pass, reaching 1,043 meters above the Albanian Riviera, offers spectacular views of the coastline and Ionian Sea.
As you drive the scenic mountain road, you can stop at lookouts to see beaches unfolding below.
One fun activity is to hike the fragrant pine forests and watch for golden eagles overhead. The Llogara mountain pass makes for a rejuvenating pitstop on this Albanian roadtrip.
At last, there is also the Llogara National Park nearby which is rich in biodiversity having over 1,000 plant species and roaming wild horses.