Rafting in Vjosa River, Albania. Photo: Host/Albania Rafting
Brand New!

Canyons to Coast Adventure in Albania

7 nights
Moderate

Kayak, raft and hike through untamed rivers, mythical mountains and epic canyons to the stunning beaches of the Albanian Riviera

What's Included?

Activities & Certified Guides

All itinerary activities with local, expert, English-speaking guides

Hotel & Guesthouse

3 nights in hotels, 4 nights in locally run guesthouses

Meals

All breakfasts, 4 lunches, 2 dinners

Transfers

To and from the airport and everything in between

Equipment

Everything you need for kayaking, rafting and river hiking (seasonal)

Small Like-minded Groups

Solo-friendly by design, join our small n’ sociable groups of up to 14 like-minded, active and outdoorsy people
From

excluding flights

What's it like?

Rafting in Vjosa River, Albania. Photo: Host/Albania Rafting
GettyImages-1776532264
Rafting in Vjosa River, Albania. Photo: Host/Albania Rafting
Albanian Riviera. Photo: GettyImages-1071048672
Rafting on Vjosa River, Albania. Photo: Host/Albania Rafting
GettyImages-1363580471

Kayak and raft the remarkable waters at the heart of the Vjosa Wild River National Park – Europe’s last free-flowing river

Venture along remote trails in the Tomorr Mountains, and hike to secluded coves lapped by clear waters on Albania's coast

Swim in the natural pools and waterfalls of the Osumi Canyon, a verdant natural wonder with a unique ecosystem

Looking for a shorter adventure? Check out our trip to Raft, Kayak and Hike in Albania

Key Information

Day 1

Welcome to Albania!

Hike in Berat Old Village, Albania. Photo: Much Better Adventures/Laura Reid

Driving

2hrs

Meet your host – either at Tirana Airport or in central Tirana – for your transfer south, a drive of about 90 mins. Arrive in the fortified old city of Berat, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Take a wander around the ancient castle, and get to know your fellow travellers this evening over a traditional Albanian meal.

Day 2

Explore the sacred Tomorr Mountains

Hiking in Tomorr, Albania. Photo: Much Better Adventures/Laura Reid

Hiking

6hrs · 16km · 400m up · 400m down

Driving

1.5hrs

Embark on a journey through the rugged landscapes of Albania in off-road vehicles, traversing the remote mountains that hold a profound place in Albanian folklore. Lace up your boots to hike through one of the last sanctuaries for wild wolves and bears remaining in Europe, stopping for lunch in a small village along the way. Take in the breathtaking views of Mount Tomori, one of the country’s most magnificent mountains, before indulging in a wine-tasting experience at a nearby local winery.

Day 3

Osumi Canyon

River hike in Osumi Canyon, Albania. Photo: Much Better Adventures/Laura Reid

Hiking

2.5hrs · 300m up

Driving

1.5-2hrs

Delve into the captivating natural wonder that is the Osumi Canyon. Depending on the season and water levels (see the FAQ below for full details), embark on either a river hike or a thrilling rafting adventure along the River Osum. Immerse yourself in the canyon's distinctive ecosystem, enjoying wild swims among its lush, evergreen surroundings. Wrap up your day with a scenic drive back to Berat, after tucking into a satisfying lunch in Corovoda.

Day 4

Kayaking the Vjosa River

Kayaking on the Vjosa, Albania. Photo: Host/Albania Rafting

Kayaking

2.5hrs · 8km

Driving

3.5hrs

Embark on another picturesque road trip through the secluded heart of Albania, making your way to Këlcyrë Gorge for an unforgettable kayaking experience on the Vjosa – the last untamed river in Europe. Paddle your way through turquoise waters before stopping for lunch in Tepelene. Spend the evening relaxing over dinner with a cosy overnight stay in Permet.

Day 5

Rafting the Vjosa River

Rafting on Vjosa River, Albania. Photo: Host/Albania Rafting

Rafting

2.5hrs

Driving

3.5hrs

Explore further the remarkable Vjosa River, now designated as a protected National Park, with a thrilling morning rafting expedition. You'll tackle Class III rapids through stunning sections of the river sections surrounded by spectacular mountain scenery. Hop back into the minibus to head to lunch in Permet, then relax at the thermal baths in Benja before dinner.

Day 6

To the Albanian Riviera

Albanian Riviera. Photo: GettyImages-1071048672

Hiking

3-4hrs

Driving

2hrs

Enjoy a hearty breakfast before hitting the road to Qeparo, a coastal village on the Albanian Riviera. En route, stop to explore the historical Ali Pasha Tepelene aqueduct, the Peshture Waterfall (a real hidden gem) and the awe-inspiring Nivica Canyons. Dive into a hike in the Qeparo village fortress, a settlement which evolved over a millennium. Enjoy lunch in Qeparo, followed by an afternoon on the beach. Get a good night's sleep in this picturesque spot.

Day 7

Hiking at Porto Palermo Castle

Gjipe beach with rocks and river,  Albania. Photo: GettyImages-472797134

Hiking

3hrs · 350m up · 350m down

Tackle the trails leading to the fabled Porto Palermo Castle and the majestic Borshi Castle, both standing sentinel along the breathtaking Albanian Riviera. Hike your way through the diverse landscapes until you reach the pristine shores of Llamani Beach and the sun-kissed paradise of Borshi Beach. A swift 20-minute transfer transports you to Porto Palermo for an evening of relaxation in Qeparo.

Day 8

Farewell Albania!

View from Tormorr Mountains, Albania. Photo: Host/Albania Rafting

Driving

3.5hr

Bid farewell to the stunning landscapes of Albania, jumping into your transfer from Qeparo to Tirana Airport, reflecting on an awesome multi-activity odyssey filled with coasts, canyons, wild rivers, and mountains.

Day 1

Hotel · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 2 – Day 3

Hotel · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 4

Guesthouse · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 5

Guesthouse · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 6 – Day 7

Guesthouse · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 8

Departure day

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

What is the food like?

Image from host, Albania Rafting

Albanian food consists of hearty and healthy dishes of meat and vegetables, much of which is seasonal and sourced locally. Popular dishes include turkey, lamb or goat pershesh, served with a local bread known as kulac, a meat and leek pie made with thin pastry called byrek and freshly caught fish served in a Mediterranean style. Fish dishes are often flavoured with white vinegar and olive oil grown in Southern Albania, and many dishes are served with wine from one of the local vineyards.

Please let your host know of any dietary requirements in advance by requesting this on your passenger info form.

What is the accommodation like?

Hotel, Berat, Albania. Photo: Host/Albania Rafting
Berat

You'll spend three nights in Berat, staying in twin-share rooms at Hotel Castle Park. Set in a scenic area of woodland, it's located around 1.5 kilometres from the centre of Berat town.

Image from host, Albania Rafting
Permet

You'll spend two nights in a guesthouse in the small southern town of Permet, next to the banks of the beautiful Vjosa River. Rooms will be on a twin-share basis.

Image from Google
Qeparo

You'll spend two nights in a guesthouse in Qeparo, just a stone's throw from the coast, with views of the coastal region. Rooms will be on a twin-share basis.

Upgrades

For solo travellers looking for their own space, an optional private room can be booked for an extra charge. Please see Optional Extras for the price and request this at the time of booking, as this is subject to availability.

This trip has been rated as Moderate

No prior rafting or kayaking experience is necessary; all you need is a reasonable level of fitness and the ability to engage in 3-4 hours of activity on these days. Your expert guide will be there to show you the ropes and assist you in navigating the water-based activities.

For the treks, a good level of fitness and stamina is required, especially considering the 6-hour hike covering 16km on Day 2. While a couple of steady climbs pose challenges, the breathtaking views along the way make the journey truly worthwhile.

Confidence in swimming is essential to ensuring your safety during the water-based segments of the trip.

The best months for hiking in Albania are February to June, and September to November, when the weather is warm and sunny, reaching temperatures of around 30°C. July and August can be hotter; however, this is usually broken up by cool coastal breezes.

The Area

map

Logistics

Starts

Tirana International Airport (TIA)

Arrive by 15:00 on Day 1

Ends

Tirana International Airport (TIA)

13:00 on Day 8

Transfers

Arrive by 15:00 on Day 1 and your host will arrange a transfer from Tirana Airport to your hotel in Berat. The transfer takes approximately 1.5 hours, so if travellers are on flights arriving at similar times there may be a short wait, in order to group the transfers together.

Pickups can also be made from a location in central Tirana for anyone who has arrived earlier and is staying in the capital. The pickup point is usually the Dinamo Stadium near the Grand Park of Tirana. Your host will confirm the pickup time and location with you in advance.

On Day 8 you'll be dropped off at Tirana airport by 13:00 in time to catch any flight leaving after 15:00. If you are extending your trip and wish to be dropped off in Tirana city centre instead of the airport, this will be possible (free of charge). Once you have booked your flights, please provide your host with this information, so they can plan logistics.

If you are arriving or departing outside these days, your host can arrange private airport transfers for an extra cost. See Optional Extras for details.

Travel options

There are regular flights to Tirana from major airports across the UK and Europe.

Enjoy 12.5% Off Outdoor Gear

In need of a few more items? All bookings receive a 12.5% discount to use at Cotswold Outdoor, Snow + Rock and Runner's Need.

What's included?

  • All kayaking and rafting equipment
  • Wetsuits, lifejackets and helmets for river hike

What do I need to bring?

  • Small backpack with rain cover
  • Suitable walking shoes for hiking
  • An additional pair of trainers that can get wet (for use when rafting, kayaking and if doing the river hike)
  • Breathable, light-weight, waterproof clothing
  • Swimwear for multiple days
  • Plenty of spare underwear and clothes for getting wet
  • Quick drying travel towel
  • Wind-stopper jacket
  • Sun hat
  • Sunglasses
  • Suncream
  • Refillable water bottle x 1.5 litre
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Head torch
  • Car sickness tablets (optional)
*Requests for optional extras can be made after booking on your “My Bookings” page

Pre/post trip accommodation in Tirana (Double / Twin)

Payable Before Departure

Pre/post trip accommodation in Tirana (Double / Twin)

Per Night

Pre/post trip accommodation in Tirana (Single)

Payable Before Departure

Pre/post trip accommodation in Tirana (Single)

Per Night

Additional night accommodation in Qeparo (Double / Twin)

Payable Before Departure

Additional night accommodation in Qeparo (Double / Twin)

Per Night

Additional night accommodation in Qeparo (Single)

Payable Before Departure

Additional night accommodation in Qeparo (Single)

Per Night

Optional Private Room Upgrade

Payable Before Departure

Optional Private Room Upgrade

Per Person

Transfer from Qeparo to Tirana Airport (per vehicle price, max 4 people)

Payable Before Departure

Transfer from Qeparo to Tirana Airport (per vehicle price, max 4 people)

Transfers between Tirana Airport and Tirana City

Payable Before Departure

Transfers between Tirana Airport and Tirana City

Per Person

This trip is brand new

We’re still waiting to collect any reviews from other travellers on this trip. However, all our hosts go through an extensive vetting process to ensure that your adventure is awesome.

We partner with the World Land Trust to ensure this trip achieves Net-Zero emissions. We also support their Buy an Acre programme, helping local communities to buy and protect natural habitats in perpetuity.

What's the number?
It works out on average at 349kg of CO2 emissions per person, including all local transport, accommodation, food, activities, guides, staff and office operations.

The only thing it doesn’t include right now is flights and travel to the destination. We do make an overall estimate across all our customers separately, but as we don’t book flights, have customers from all corners of the world, and no way of reliably knowing their travel plans, we simply can’t include an individual number in the figure on display here. We’ve got a goal to fix that, so that when you book, there is a way to measure and mitigate the carbon emitted by your flight too.

But what does the number mean?
Yep, hard to picture eh? To give you an idea:

  • Driving 1000miles/1609km would be approx. 281kg of CO2 in an average car (or 140.5kg per person if there was 2 of you in it).
  • A return economy class flight London - New York would be approx. 1,619kg (1.66 tonnes) per person.
  • 10 trees in a temperate forest are estimated to remove approx. 250kg of CO2 from the air in a period of 5-10 years.

What are we doing about it?
Our trips are relatively low-carbon by design, and we're working with all our hosts to develop long term carbon reduction plans. We partner with the World Land Trust to ensure this trip achieves Net-Zero emissions. We also support their Buy an Acre programme, helping local communities to buy and protect natural habitats in perpetuity, ensuring the protection of the reserve and its wildlife.

Want to know more?
Amazingly, no international travel company has ever publicly published their carbon measurements before, as far as we know. We believe that must change, quickly. So we’re openly sharing the method we used in the hope that other companies will be able to more easily follow suit and build on what we've done so far. You'll find it all here.

No prior rafting or kayaking experience is necessary; all you need is a reasonable level of fitness and the ability to engage in 3-4 hours of activity on these days. Your expert guide will be there to show you the ropes and assist you in navigating the water-based activities.

For the treks, a good level of fitness and stamina is required, especially considering the 6-hour hike covering 16km on Day 2. While a couple of steady climbs pose challenges, the breathtaking views along the way make the journey truly worthwhile.

Confidence in swimming is essential to ensuring your safety during the water-based segments of the trip.

For departures between the months of March to June, you'll go rafting within the canyon as the typical water levels at this time of year allow a safe environment in which to use rafts. For departures between the months of July to October, you'll go river hiking. This involves hiking along the river bed within the canyon, jumping into pools along the way. A wetsuit, helmet and lifejacket are provided for this activity, but you'll need your own pair of trainers with a good grip – ones that you don't mind getting soaked through!

Sure can! Over 70% of our travellers travel solo, it’s a great way to meet like-minded people.

The best months for hiking in Albania are February to June, and September to November, when the weather is warm and sunny, reaching temperatures of around 30°C. July and August can be hotter; however, this is usually broken up by cool coastal breezes.

Tips are not included in the trip cost. These are entirely at your discretion and the amount should be reflective of your perception of service and quality – a tip is not compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service.

We recommend checking out the country-specific information and also talking to a travel nurse.

For current advice about travelling in Albania, have a read of the UK Foreign Office pages.

Our recommended travel insurance provider is Campbell Irvine.

Travel insurance is compulsory for all of our adventures and you are required to provide your policy information before departing.

Your insurance should include adequate protection for overseas medical treatment, evacuation/repatriation, your baggage and equipment and the specific activities involved on your adventure. We also strongly recommend it includes cancellation and curtailment insurance, should you be unable to join your trip for specific reasons such as illness.

We fully endorse Campbell Irvine as their insurance offers all of the above, so get in touch with them or call on 020 7938 1734 to get your insurance sorted. We suggest that you book travel insurance as soon as you book your adventure, just to cover you for any last-minute life changes. We know you’re an active lot and injuries do happen!

We automatically convert prices from the local currency that a host receives to your chosen currency. We update our exchange rates on a daily basis so this does mean that prices displayed on the site are subject to currency fluctuations, which is why you may see them change over time.

If you wish to change the currency you pay in, head to the bottom of the page.

All of our group adventures are specially designed for adults to enjoy (18+) as we want these adventures to bring together outdoorsy people who are truly like-minded. Children can be accommodated on some private departures.

You're always in good company on one of our adventures.

Our trips are typically made up of a mixture of solo travellers and small groups of 2 or 3 friends, with most in their 30s-50s.

Our sociable adventures are solo-friendly by design and naturally attract outdoorsy people with a shared mindset; a love for adventure, a desire to push themselves and meet awesome, like-minded people along the way.

It’s this camaraderie that has so often turned a great adventure into a life-changing one.

Don't just take our word for it:

  • 95% of people rate the group dynamics on our trips 5/5
  • 90% of people recommend joining a trip to make new friends
  • 75% of people have met people on our trips that they would now consider friends

See here for more info about the Much Better Adventures tribe.

Interested in a more exclusive experience? Opt for a 'Private Group' through the dates and prices tab to book this adventure for just you and your chosen companions.

Our team of Adventure Hunters create exclusive adventures with highly vetted, specialist hosts. We only work with independent, local in-destination experts who know the very best places to explore and how to stay safe. See here for more info about the local teams we partner with.

Private trip

Got questions? We've got answers

Our friendly and expert team is on hand to help you choose one of our adventures. So if you want answers to questions like "Who else is going?" or anything else about this trip – please get in touch.

We've got your back

Guaranteed to run

All our trips are now guaranteed to run. Once you’ve booked your spot you can immediately make your travel arrangements, no uncertainty, no hanging about (excludes 'request to book' departures). Full details

Flexible payments

Secure your spot with the minimum deposit and pay off the remaining balance in as many instalments as you like, with no interest or fees. Full details

Happiness Guarantee

We’re so confident you’ll have an amazing time we’ll put our money on it. Full details

Full financial protection

To give you complete peace of mind we’re backed by ABTOT, ABTA and ATOL memberships. Full details

Tried & Trusted

We’re rated ‘Excellent’ on Trustpilot with over 900 verified trip reviews averaging 4.8/5.

Connect before you go

You'll be invited to join a WhatsApp group to get to know each other before your big adventure together. Full details

DEPARTURE DATES

July 2024

Sunday • 14th July 2024

to Sunday • 21st July 2024
Guaranteed to run
Private trip

Go private and split the bill with ease.

Forget complex logistics, we've taken care of all the details to ensure a hassle-free get together. All of the adventure, none of the faff.

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