Albanian Mountains

We hopped a shared taxi to Shkoder, a town in northern Albania. From there we caught a ferry to the beautiful Valbone Valley. This ferry took several hours, and provided amazing views of scenery and a glimpse into the lives of the local people. We past several little villages and farms along the way, who’s only access to the outside world was the ferry that I riding. I can imagine that you would have a unique perspective growing up in a place like that!

Once off the ferry we made our way to the guesthouse, which was surrounded by amazing views and mountain peaks. We took a stroll around, and had a sumptuous Albanian dinners. To finish off, we had a glass of Rakia, a strong brandy type drink!

The next morning the real hike began. We started early in the morning, and got lost! It was rather embarrassing that we couldn’t find the trailhead, haha! After 45 minutes of meandering, we found the trailhead and met up with some fellow travellers and hiking buddies.

The terrain to cover was climbing up the mountains that surrounded the Valbone Valley, crossing the pass, and making our way down towards a town called Theth on the other side of the mountains. The trek from Valbone to the pass was quite cloudy, so we were bummed out about missing the views. Then we crossed the mountain pass – it was like night and day! All the clouds were held back by the mountains, and we had a spectacular view of the Theth side of the mountains. It almost seemed like something you’d see in a Lord of the Rings movie – some powerful force holding back the wrath of the storm! Very cool!

We made our way down to the little village of Theth, and stayed the night there. The next morning we took a van back to Shkoder over a crazy mountain road. From there we head into our next country – Montenegro!

Cheers, Shawn

 

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