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Raft, Kayak and Hike Albania

Explore Albania and help save the Vjosa - Europe’s last wild, free-flowing river - whilst rafting it with local activists

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Trip Ref #9149

Adventures / Adventure Tapas

Raft, Kayak and Hike Albania

Explore Albania and help save the Vjosa - Europe’s last wild, free-flowing river - whilst rafting it with local activists

DURATION

2 nights

LOCATION

Albania

ANNUAL LEAVE

2 days off work

GROUP SIZE

Up to 16 people

MEETING POINT

Ioannis Kapodistrias International Airport, Corfu

ACCOMMODATION

Apartment · Homestay

DIFFICULTY

Moderate

To enjoy this trip to the full you should be in good physical condition and ready for some class III rafting.

Experience first-hand an adventure destination steeped in history and biodiversity

Raft the Vjosa, the last wild and free-flowing river left in Europe and now under threat by plans to build a hydroelectric dam

Kayak to breathtaking beaches, snorkel in crystal clear waters and hike through Albania's historic cities and villages

Included

Guides

Professional and certified English-speaking guides

Accommodation

1 night in an apartment and 1 night in a homestay

Meals

Munch on tasty food throughout

Transfers

All transfers, including pick-up from Saranda harbour

Equipment

All your rafting, kayaking and snorkelling equipment

Permits

All taxes and licenses

Not Included

Flights to and from the meeting point

Travel to and from the start point

Travel insurance

Some meals as described

The Area

Logistics

Starts

Saranda Seaport

9:45

Ends

Saranda Seaport

16:00

Transfers

Your guide will meet you at the seaport in Saranda from the Corfu ferry. At the end you'll be returned to the seaport with plenty of time to return to Corfu Airport and your flight home. Please note, there is a 1-hour time difference between Corfu and Saranda.

Travel options

There are direct flights from across the UK and Europe to Corfu Airport but your host advises that you book one that allows you to catch the 9:00 ferry to Saranda. They will contact you before you leave to check your arrival and departure plans.

What about all the carbon?

We mitigate 4x the carbon generated by all our customer flights annually through our partnership with Cool Earth.

Day 1

Apartment · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 2

Homestay · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 3

Departure day

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

What is the food like?

Albanian restaurants use lots of local, natural produce, usually accompanied by wine from the local vineyards. You're likely to taste local specialities such as pies (byrek) with meat and leek, stuffed zucchini, pispili with cornflour and of course lamb/goat meat served with vegetables and the dairy products that the area is known for. Fresh seafood is also possible close to the coast. Typical desserts are kabuni with raisins (a sweet rice dish) and marmalade (gliko) of walnut, fig, plum, etc. Most dietary requirements can be catered for, just let your host know when booking.

What is the accommodation like?

Saranda

You’ll spend your first night in a comfortable apartment in Saranda. The apartment is air-conditioned with a TV, lounge area and free WiFi.

Peshtan village

On your second night, you'll stay at a homestay in Peshtan village, close to Permet where you can exchange stories with the local residents.

Day 1

Butrint to Ali Pasha Castle

Hiking

3hr

Kayaking

1hr

Swimming

1hr

Meet your host at Saranda harbour and then kayak along the Ionian coast from the Butrint amphitheatre to the historic Ali Pasha Castle - both UNESCO world heritage sites. Head to Lukove, a small, traditional village and hike to one of the most beautiful beaches in the area, Krorez Bay where you can swim in the crystal clear water and get up close to its inhabitants - don’t forget your snorkel and underwater camera.

Day 2

Raft the Vjosa

Hiking

3hrs

Rafting

2.5hrs

Head to the small town of Permet, the staging point for your expedition onto the Vjosa and tackle Europe’s last free-flowing river. Its entire 270km course is wild, untamed and adorned with beautiful canyons, braided river sections, islands and oxbows as well as class III rapids - prepare for waves of up to four feet and narrow passages that can send the boat shimmying and water gushing over the sides. Wind down in the thermal baths of Benja and then hike to the Canyon of Lengarica where you can relax and enjoy a swim before heading to a local homestay and a barbecue of local food eaten to the sound of traditional music.

Day 3

Gjirokastra

Hiking

4.5hrs

Hike around the beautiful and culturally rich city of Gjirokastra, including the archaeological park of Antigonea, Saraqinisht village and the Spille Monastery. After lunch, it’s time to say goodbye, head back to the seaport and cross the water to Corfu airport. You can decide whether you're going to spend your last hours at the beach of Saranda or in Corfu before flying back home. (Ferry departs at 16:00)

Please Note

All our adventures take place in wild places. Things can go wrong in wild places. Your perfectly planned itinerary may change a bit (or a lot) if the weather turns, someone gets hurt, or a volcano erupts. Usually though, changes make it all the better.

15% Off Outdoor Gear

In need of a few more items? All bookings receive a 15% discount on us to use at Cotswold Outdoor, Snow + Rock, Runner's Need, and Cycle Surgery.

What's included?

  • Neoprene suits (rafting & kayaking)
  • Life jacket
  • Helmet
  • Kayaks
  • Snorkelling equipment

What do I need to bring?

  • Breathable light-weight waterproof gear (Goretex, Sympatex, etc)
  • Wind-stopper jacket
  • Small backpack with rain coverage
  • Long trousers for hiking
  • Hiking boots
  • Cap
  • Sunblock
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Headlamp
  • Hiking poles
  • Water bottle
  • Sunglasses and sunblock
  • Camera
  • Mobile phone
  • Personal medicine if required (please inform your guide in case of emergency)

To enjoy this trip to the full you should be in good physical condition and ready for some class III rafting.

Sure can! Over 50% of our travellers travel solo, it’s a great way to meet like-minded people.

The climate is decidedly Mediterranean across the whole coastal area with hot summers bordering on straight-up heat waves. The best time to visit Albania is between May and June and September. The average temperature in June is between 16.5°C and 27.5°C, with possible peaks as low as 6°C and as high as 37°C.

We’ve teamed up with the guys at World Nomads to offer insurance designed for adventurous travellers across 140 countries that includes overseas medical, evacuation, baggage and a range of adventure sports and activities. To get yours sorted, click here.

We suggest that you book travel insurance as soon as you book the trip, just to cover you for any last minute life changes. We know you’re an active lot and injuries do happen!

All of our group adventures are especially designed for adults to enjoy (18+) as we want these adventures to bring together outdoorsy people who are truly like-minded.

"I cannot recommend this highly enough! The people on the trip were amazing. Easily the best trip I've ever been on!" Charlotte, 2019, Trustpilot.

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.

Generally, yes. Crime and violence does occur in some areas, but is not typically targeted at foreigners.

Scientific knowledge of the river is still extremely limited and we know more about the eco-systems of waterways in South America and Asia than we do the Vjosa. Many endangered species, like the European eel and the greater flamingo, depend on the free-flowing waters of the Vjosa for their livelihood, however, the Albanian government is currently planning to build a series of hydroelectric dams upstream, which would threaten both the local wildlife and the livelihood of the river-bank's residents. By supporting the Vjosa's local businesses, we can help them continue their fight against the proposed plans to destroy this wild and beautiful place.

From …

Transferrable Deposits

Cancel up to 31 days before departure and we'll transfer your deposit into credit for a future booking.

Free Date Changes

Free date changes up to 31 days before departure.

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