Fantastic Experiences, Great Value

020 7263 3000

Albania Through the Ages

Apollonia - Albania
Berat Fortress, Albania
Gjirokastër Bazaar, Albania
Greek Amphitheatre, Butrint, Albania
Vlorë Promenade, Albania
St Mary's Monastery, Zvernec, Albania
Krujë Bazaar, Albania
Incl flights, accommodation & transfers
From   £999 £849
8 days

Holiday highlights

  • Fantastic 8 day tour of this amazing country. - Find out more about Albania
  • Take in the culture and history of Tirana.
  • Explore the traditional Ottoman settlements of Berat & Gjirokastër.
  • Marvel at the ancient ruins of Butrint & Apollonia with well-preserved ancient Greek, Roman, Byzantine & Venetian structures.
  • Relax on the Adriatic beach of Ksamil with lapping, warm turquoise waters overlooking the Greek island of Corfu.
  • Soak up the views of the Adriatic coastline along the Albanian Riviera.
  • Wander the historical bazaar of Krujë replete with local handicrafts.

View this Itinerary in Photos

  • Fly from the UK to Tirana, the capital city of Albania. Located in the centre of the country and enclosed by the Dajti Mountain National Park. Upon arrival you are met at the airport and escorted to your hotel located in the centre of the city.

  • This morning is spent discovering the capital city and its recent history. Explore the underground world of Bunk’Art 1 - a nuclear bunker built into a mountain by the communist government that shows Albanian life during the 45 years of communist rule. Afterwards, enjoy a walking tour of Skanderbeg Square, with the vast monument to the national hero who fought against Ottoman expansion to unite Albanians of different regions and dialects together in a common cause, thus helping define Albanian ethnic identity. A beautiful 19th century mosque also occupies a corner of the square. Visit the nearby new bazaar where a traditional Albanian lunch can be purchased.

    In the afternoon, take the scenic two-hour journey to the ancient Ottoman city of Berat. Arrive in the early evening and check-in to your traditional Ottoman-style hotel where you can enjoy an authentic Albanian meal or explore the winding alleys of the old town drenched in atmospheric light.

    Included Activities: Walking tour of Tirana.
    Included Meals: Breakfast at the hotel.

  • Today is dedicated to getting to know the fascinating UNESCO world heritage town of Berat, affectionately known as ‘the town of 1,001 windows’ due to the architecture of the Ottoman-style houses that climb up the valley either side of the Osum River. The town can be separated into three distinct areas; the Kalaja, or castle, which stands proud over the valley; and the residential areas of Mangalemi and Gorica below.

    The half-day walking tour will take you through the warren-like alleyways of Mangalemi and Kalaja that lead to hidden gems around almost every corner as you learn about the history of the 2,400-year-old town.

    The Church of the Dormition of St Mary gives an incredible example of late 18th century Orthodox iconography with many original examples by the famous 16th century painter Onufri still displayed. Views are fabulous from atop the Kalaja with the most impressive being the viewpoint overlooking the town.

    Enjoy the rest of afternoon at leisure. Perhaps venturing across the river to explore the Gorica quarter or relax in your hotel.

    Included Activities: Guided tour of Berat, including the Kalaja and Managalemi quarters. 
    Included Meals: Breakfast at the hotel.

  • After an early breakfast at your hotel begin the journey to Gjirokastër accompanied with amazing views of mountain ranges and vast plateaus. Along the journey the first glimpse of the Adriatic can be spotted.

    Arrive in Gjirokastër ‘the city of stone’ said to be Albania’s most attractive towns and best preserved Ottoman settlements dating back some 2,500 years. With street paved with huge chunks of limestone and vast slates stacked on the roofs of the ancient houses the old town is a rare example of architecture with some 600 ‘monumental’ Ottoman-era houses exquisitely preserved. The communist leader, Enver Hoxha, was born here as was the famous Albanian author, Ismail Kadare, who intricately described life in the town in his seminal work ‘Chronicle in Stone’.

    Overlooking the town is the dominating fortress that also offers impeccable views out to the Drina Valley and mountains in the distant. It is possible to witness eagles, the national symbol of Albania, soaring at eye-level from the fortress.

    After free time in the old town and lunch the journey down to the Adriatic Coast begins with arrival in the early evening into Sarande where one can enjoy a pleasant evening stroll along the coastal promenade and fresh seafood at a number of restaurants.

    Included Activities: Guided tour of Gjirokastër
    Included Meals: Breakfast at the hotel

  • Head out of Sarandë to the crown of Albania’s UNESCO World Heritage sites – Butrint. The ancient archaeological ruins span a history of over two and half millennia with remnants of ancient Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Venetian and other eras sprawled across a vast national park. Learn about the intricate chronology of the site and discover the treasures of the immaculately preserved Greek amphitheatre, the Roman Baptistery and the Grand Basilica both from 6th Century AD. The museum set across from the acropolis showcases the vast hoard of artefacts that were uncovered during the many excavations across the last century. The site has drawn many visitors over the centuries including Lord Byron and Edward Lear who created many notable sketches of the area during his exploration of Albania.

    After soaking up the history of Butrint National Park, you are transferred to the nearby Ksamil Beach, where you can soak up the sun and perhaps swim in the inviting turquoise waters. You have time for lunch at one of the restaurants offering fresh seafood. Enjoy the views over the gulf to the Greek island of Corfu.

    Included Activities: Guided tour of Butrint National.
    Included Meals: Breakfast at the hotel.

  • The breath-taking views of the Albanian Riviera beckon today during the journey from Sarandë to the city of Albanian Independence, Vlorë. Enjoy mesmerising views over the Ionian Sea towards the Greek islands to one side and dominant mountainous terrain to the other. Wind along this coastal vein through small, traditional villages with stalls selling local honey and fruit dotted along the road. Aside from the regular expected traffic the occasional flock of sheep and goats may be found corralled by a distant shepherd.

    The journey to Vlorë takes less than four hours driving, but you will make several stops including the Ali Pasha Fort – a fine example of a Venetian architecture and a rare example of a coastal castle.

    The Riviera is dotted with spectacular white-sand beaches. If the weather is good, stop at one of the beaches to take a dip in the Ionian Sea and enjoy some fresh seafood before continuing to the highest point of Llogara Pass offering incredible views. Descending the pass takes you through the dense pine forests of Llogara National Park and into the city of Vlorë.

    You arrive in Vlorë in the early evening, where you can walk along the promenade from your hotel into the city or stroll through the recently renovated old town.

    Included Meals: Breakfast at the hotel. Lunch at a restaurant along the Albanian Riviera.

  • Depart from Vlorë and make a short visit to the nearby island monastery of Zvernec situated in the Narta Lagoon just north of the city. Accessed by a 270m wooden walkway, the building is a great example of a 13th century monastery and is enhanced by its unique setting. It is also possible to sometimes see pelicans and flamingos here. The rest of the morning is devoted to the exploration of the nearby ruins of Apollonia. Established in 600 BC, the site includes some incredible archaeology, most notably the amphitheatre and the vast pillars of the city’s administrative core. Set across a vast site, much is yet to the excavated.

    After lunch, continue northwards for two hours to the foot of Mount Krujë where the Ottoman hill-town of Krujë is situated. After an early evening arrival, enjoy the surrounding views of the mountains and plains, and perhaps enjoy a final hearty Balkan dinner.

    Included Activities: Visit the island monastery of Zvernec and explore the ruins of Apollonia.
    Included Meals: Breakfast at the hotel. Lunch in a restaurant near Apollonia.

     
  • Your final morning is for leisure. Perhaps stroll through the ancient bazaar of Krujë, located next to your hotel. Here traditional handcrafts such as hand-woven rugs and intricate copper ornaments can be haggled for. A visit to the castle gives a final glimpse of the beautiful landscape of Albania. Housed within the castle walls are the excellent National Ethnographic Museum and Skanderbeg Museum, portraying the national heroes life through the communist party’s lens.

    You then have a short transfer to the airport for your return flight to the UK.

    Included Meals: Breakfast at the hotel.

Accommodation

Accommodation in Tirana

Lot Boutique Hotel

Included

Standard Hotel: The Lot Boutique Hotel is located in central Tirana in a baroque-style building, positioned on a quiet street. With its convenient location both Skanderbeg Square and the new bazaar are only a short walk away as are cafés, restaurants and shops. The décor is clean and modern. Rooms are comfortable and spacious.

Why stay here: The hotel’s central location is the perfect base for exploring the capital.

Hotel Facilities

  • WiFi is available throughout the hotel and is free of charge.

  • The hotel offers a 24-hour front desk, luggage storage and a wake-up call service.

About the room

All rooms have free WiFi, air conditioning, a TV, a telephone, ensuite bathrooms, tea and coffee making facilities, a minibar, a hairdryer and safety deposit boxes.

Accommodation in Berat

Hotel Onufri

Included
Exterior, Hotel Onufri, Berat, Albania

Standard Hotel: Located in the heart of the historical Mangalemi Quarter of Berat and only 800m from the citadel, the Hotel Onufri offers large rooms finished with authentic Albanian Ottoman furnishings and decorations. The hotel has a large outdoor patio where meals can be enjoyed surrounded by the historical architecture of the town.

Why stay here: An authentic stay in the heart of the Old Town in an historic Ottoman style building constructed in the traditional aesthetics of the region.

Hotel Facilities

  • WiFi is available throughout the hotel and is free of charge.

  • The hotel offers a 24-hour front desk, luggage storage and a wake-up call service.

About the room

All rooms have free WiFi, air conditioning, a TV, a telephone, ensuite bathrooms, tea and coffee making facilities, a minibar, a hairdryer and safety deposit boxes.

Accommodation in Sarandë

Hotel Brilant

Included

Standard Hotel: Hotel Brilant is located at the southern end of the iconic promenade and is ideally located to explore the restaurants and bars of Sarandë. Guests can enjoy fantastic views across the Ionian Sea to the Greek Island of Corfu from the hotel’s restaurant located on the fifth floor and accessed by a glass lift. Rooms are large, modern and comfortable with ensuite bathrooms and a balcony.

Why stay here: Situated a block from the seafront, Hotel Brilant offers great access to the vibrant promenade with a wide selection of restaurants, cafés and bars. 

Hotel Facilities

  • WiFi is available throughout the hotel and is free of charge.
  • The hotel offers a 24-hour front desk, luggage storage and a wake-up call service.

About the room

All rooms have free WiFi, air conditioning, a TV, a telephone, ensuite bathrooms, tea and coffee making facilities, a minibar, a hairdryer and safety deposit boxes.

Accommodation in Vlorë

Regina City Hotel

Included

Standard Hotel: A modern and sophisticated hotel only a two minute walk away from the beach and famous promenade of Vlorë. Rooms are large with ensuite bathrooms and a spacious balcony. The restaurant in situated on the top floor, with great views over the surrounding mountains, and leads to a rooftop terrace with an inviting pool.

Why stay here: A modern hotel with great facilities and easy access to the sea and promenade.

Hotel Facilities

  • WiFi is available throughout the hotel and is free of charge.
  • Rooftop restaurant, bar and swimming pool.
  • The hotel offers a 24-hour front desk, luggage storage and a wake-up call service.

About the room

All rooms have free WiFi, air conditioning, a TV, a telephone, ensuite bathrooms, tea and coffee making facilities, a minibar, a hairdryer and safety deposit boxes.

Accommodation in Kruje

Hotel Panorama Kruje

Included

Standard Hotel: A large, modern hotel built using the traditional stone façade of the Ottoman era. Rooms are large and clean with balconies overlooking the surrounding valley. The hotel has a number of authentic dining options including a rooftop restaurant with a swimming pool offering incredible views of the surrounding landscape.

Why stay here: The hotel boasts a large roof terrace with swimming pool and incredible sweeping views of the unfolding landscape. The famous bazaar of the town is located next to the hotel with traditional artisanal crafts available.

Hotel Facilities

  • WiFi is available throughout the hotel and is free of charge.
  • Rooftop terrace and swimming pool.
  • Several restaurant options throughout the hotel.
  • The hotel offers a 24-hour front desk, luggage storage and a wake-up call service.

About the room

All rooms have free WiFi, air conditioning, a TV, a telephone, ensuite bathrooms, tea and coffee making facilities, a minibar, a hairdryer and safety deposit boxes.

2022

Holiday Information

All the practical information you need regarding your trip is found here. From how to prepare before you leave and travelling to your destination, to advice on travelling within your country of choice.

About Your Holiday

  • All the flight-inclusive holidays on this website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. When you pay you will be supplied with an ATOL Certificate. Please ask for it and check to ensure that everything you booked (flights, hotels and other services) is listed on it. Please see our booking conditions for further information or for more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate go to: www.atol.org.uk/ATOLCertificate

  • In many cases, the best way to describe our holidays is flexible tours, so you can choose where to visit by combining different extensions and excursions, and which hotels to stay in. In most cases, you will be with other Llama Travellers, but not necessarily the same people throughout. This allows you to get to know like-minded people, but not have to spend all your time with the same group. If we don't have anyone else taking a particular part of a holiday, we will normally operate this just for you.

    In some cases, we operate more traditional tours, with the same Llama Travel group travelling together for the majority of the holiday, which allows land travel from one location to another. This is particularly the case for our European tours, and in this case we may have a minimum number of travellers required to operate the group.

    Excursions are usually taken together with other Llama Travel customers in groups of no more than 18 people. If we have more than 18 booked, we operate two groups. These will usually be in English, although in some places, especially on wildlife excursions, the excursions may be operated by one of our local partners, so you may be with people other than Llama Travel customers and the group may be a mix of English and other languages. In these cases, group sizes can sometimes be larger. If you would like to know the likely situation for your holiday, please ask us and we will be able to check. Transfers may be with more than 18 people.

    We get a wide range of people taking our holidays, with probably the largest group being couples aged in their forties to sixties, or even older. However, we also have a large number of customers in their twenties and thirties, especially for some of the more active holidays. What unites everyone is a sense of curiosity and a desire to discover new cultures, landscapes and wildlife. Although most of our customers travel with friends or family, we also have quite a few single travellers who are happy to mix and match as described above.

  • Prices listed are per person and based on two persons sharing a room and include all flights from the UK and within destination, service of guides and reps (please note that tips are not included), accommodation and all transfers and excursions listed in the itinerary. Where applicable, entrance fees, taxes and charges are included in our prices at the rates advised to us at the time of preparation. An adjustment will be made to your price if any of these change before your holiday. UK airport taxes are included.

Booking Conditions

How To Book

  • You can pay your deposit by bank transfer, cheque, standard UK debit card or non-premium UK personal Visa / MasterCard credit card. Balance payments can be made by bank transfer or cheque. We do not accept cards for balance payments. We are unable to accept cash.

  • To book a holiday or discuss your requirements, please call us on 020 7263 3000. We can usually confirm availability immediately, but may need to check with a supplier first.

Before You Go

  • To issue some tickets, we require passport details and ages when you book. If you subsequently change your passport, please let us know as soon as possible.

    Latin America

    Visas are not required in advance for British citizens for any Llama Travel Latin American destination. For British passports endorsed in any way and all other passports, please ask the appropriate consulate: Peru (020 7838 9223); Ecuador (020 7451 0040); Argentina (020 7318 1340); Chile (020 7222 2361); Brazil (020 7747 4500); Colombia (020 7589 5037); Bolivia (020 7235 4248); Costa Rica (020 7706 8844); Guatemala (020 7351 3042); Mexico (020 7499 8586), Panama (020 7409 2255).

    If you are flying via another country, especially the US, you need to comply with the appropriate immigration requirements. Please ask us for details.

    You need a full 10 year passport valid for 6 months after your return to the UK. If you renewed your current passport before the previous one expired, extra months may have been added to its expiry date. Any extra months on your passport over 10 years may not count towards the minimum period needed if you are transiting in Europe.

    There is an entry fee to enter Chile for citizens of Australia, the US, Canada and some other countries which must be paid upon arrival. There is also an entry fee for US and Canadian citizens visiting Argentina, which must be paid in advance online.

    If children are not travelling with both parents, some countries require a letter of consent to enter or depart. Please consult the appropriate consulate.

    Africa

    British nationals can enter South Africa, Namibia and Botswana for a visit of up to 90 days without a visa. For British passports endorsed in any way and all other passports, please ask the appropriate consulate: South Africa (020 7451 7299); Namibia (020 7636 6244); Botswana (020 7499 0031). You need a passport valid for 6 months after your return to the UK. For South Africa, you need a passport with two blank pages.

    For Zimbabwe, British nationals will be granted with a KAZA Univisa (valid for travel between Zimbabwe and Zambia and day trips into Botswana) visa, for a fee (US$ 50 per person, paid in cash). This is easiest to obtain upon arrival at the airport or border post, rather than via an agency in the UK. For British passports endorsed in any way and all other passports, please ask Zimbabwe consulate (020 7836 7755). You need a passport valid for 6 months after your return to the UK.

    For Kenya, British nationals require a visa, which must be obtained online in advance. You can apply for single entry and transit visas on the evisas website. For more information, see the website of the Kenya High Commission. Children aged 16 and below do not require a visa to enter Kenya. For British passports endorsed in any way and all other passports, please ask the Kenya consulate (020 7636 2371). You need a passport with two blank pages, valid for six months after your return to the UK.

    If children are not travelling with both parents, some countries require a letter of consent to enter or depart. Please consult the appropriate consulate. In South Africa and Namibia, children under 18 must also carry an unabridged birth certificate.

    You need a full 10 year passport valid for 6 months after your return to the UK. If you renewed your current passport before the previous one expired, extra months may have been added to its expiry date. Any extra months on your passport over 10 years may not count towards the minimum period needed if you are transiting in Europe.

    To issue some tickets, we require passport details and ages when you book. If you subsequently change your passport, please let us know as soon as possible.

    Europe

    You need a full 10 year passport valid for 6 months after your return to the UK. If you renewed your current passport before the previous one expired, extra months may have been added to its expiry date. Any extra months on your passport over 10 years may not count towards the minimum period needed.

  • Adequate travel insurance is essential. We do not sell or recommend any specific policy, but good medical insurance should cover medical evacuation and repatriation. If you are going to be taking part in any activity, please ensure your policy covers you for this, especially if this involves high-altitude trekking, such as the Inca Trail.

  • Some countries have strict regulations regarding the entry and exit of children under 18 when not travelling with both parents, or if the child has nationality of the country you are visiting. If you are travelling with children who are not entering or leaving the country with both parents, or if the child has nationality of the country you are visiting, please contact the consulate of the country you are visiting to check requirements.

    Countries in Africa have particularly strict requirements regarding children travelling, and in both South Africa and Namibia, children need to carry an unabridged birth certificate. Additionally, in Namibia, adults travelling with children where they are not the biological or legal guardians of those children, should be in possession of an affidavit statement from the child’s parents giving consent for their travel.

    Such requirements do change from time to time, and although we try to keep abreast of such changes and update this information, if you are travelling with children, we suggest you check current requirements carefully.

  • In many destinations, you can arrange adventure activities, either through Llama Travel or through Llama Travel. If you are interested in taking any of these, please make sure you are covered by your travel insurance.

  • You will receive tickets approximately 10 days before departure, along with information on accommodation, transfers and excursions. Our agents in destination will give you final details for hotel and excursions when you arrive. Please check airline tickets carefully in case timings have changed after we issued your confirmation.

  • Cards are widely accepted in most hotel and restaurants, and cash machines are common in most destinations. However, when travelling to remote areas, it is advisable to take cash, as it is difficult to withdraw or change money. Travellers cheques are no longer widely used, so it may be inconvenient to take these.

    It is always recommended to inform your bank that you are travelling abroad and to which countries. This will allow them to authorise money withdrawals from your account when you are away. Some banks say that this is not necessary, however we would still recommend contact with your bank as in some cases people have had difficulty in withdrawing currency.

    More information on the situation regarding money, budgeting and tipping in specific countries is in the country information below.

When Your Are Travelling

  • Most people who travel to the countries where Llama Travel operates experience no problems on holiday. However, as is the case anywhere in the world, crime can be a problem, especially in large cities. Tourists can appear attractive targets to criminals. To minimise the risk, use common sense. Do not display signs of wealth, such as expensive looking jewellery or cameras. Avoid empty streets, especially on your own. Take a taxi after dark. By taking sensible precautions, you should have a trouble-free holiday.

    Each country has its own standards for health and safety, but these are often not as good as in the UK. We take this into account when selecting hotels and request that they comply with all local regulations, but cannot guarantee that these are equivalent to British standards. Please take reasonable precautions to protect yourselves whilst on holiday, e.g. by locating fire exit routes.

    Please also check the Foreign Office travel advice for the countries you are visiting at www.fco.gov.uk.

  • Attitudes towards lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) travellers around the world can be very different from those in the UK.

    In Latin America and Europe, attitudes can sometimes be more conservative than in the UK, but there are not usually problems.

    In some African countries, including Zimbabwe and Kenya, same sex relationships are illegal and conservative attitudes prevail. However, hotels and lodges do not discriminate and LGBT couples can share rooms. In much of Africa, public displays of affection may attract negative attention, especially with LGBT couples, although the majority of people are friendly to visitors, irrespective of gender and sexual orientation. In South Africa, the authorities have introduced legislation which bans any discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.

    The UK Foreign Office has information LGBT travel on their travel advice for individual countries, found at www.fco.gov.uk.

  • For all wildlife excursions, please always follow the instructions of your guide, both for the animals’ welfare and for your safety. Staff are experienced at dealing with wildlife, but by their nature, excursions involving exposure to wild animals will always carry some risk.

    If you take a safari in Africa, you will be with an experienced guide at all times, who is usually unarmed. All of the game drives run according to schedule, although unexpected delays can occur, which the guide will deal with as quickly and safely as possible. Being in the wilderness means that the environment is unpredictable, so the unexpected can happen. For any excursions taken on foot, there will be a safety briefing to inform you of the possible dangers.

Health & Fitness

  • Please consult your GP or a travel clinic about health and vaccination requirements. Advice for travellers is available at www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk.

    When travelling, stomach illnesses are not uncommon due to changes in diet. We suggest you only drink bottled water and avoid ice in drinks. If you are unsure if salads and fruit have been washed in purified water, it is best to avoid them.

    If you suffer from a disability or condition and are worried whether this will affect the enjoyment of a holiday, please call us. We will do our best to help. We recommend that you bring any medicines you require from the UK.

    If you have any health problems on holiday, please speak to our local agents or hotel staff. They will arrange for a doctor or hospital if necessary. If you do experience any problems, please seek appropriate medical attention.

    Outside of major cities, medical facilities can be basic, meaning a lengthy transfer if hospital attention is required.

    Latin America

    Yellow fever and / or malaria precautions are recommended for visiting the jungle, Iguazu Falls and some parts of Colombia, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Brazil, Peru and Ecuador. Yellow Fever certificates are sometimes required if you have recently visited a country with an infected area. Children under 6 require proof of vaccination against polio to enter Brazil. Some GPs do not recommend yellow fever vaccinations for travellers over 60 years old. If you are pregnant or planning on becoming pregnant, please speak to your GP about zika. Please seek medical advice before you travel.

    Parts of South America are at high altitude. Most visitors do not suffer major problems. However, shortness of breath is common and we advise you to take things calmly during your first day at altitude. If you suffer from a heart or lung condition, or think that you may suffer due to the altitude, please consult your GP.

    Africa

    Malaria precautions are highly recommended when visiting the Kruger National Park in South Africa, Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe, the north of Namibia, including Etosha, Botswana and Kenya. Yellow Fever vaccination is highly recommended for Kenya. Travellers entering many African countries, including South Africa and Kenya Africa, coming from a yellow fever zone must have a valid yellow fever vaccination certificate. Some GPs do not recommend yellow fever vaccinations for travellers over 60 years old.

  • For most of our holidays, age is not a concern. However, a reasonable level of fitness is required, as most holidays require some walking, sometimes on uneven ground. Even relatively mild activities can be strenuous at altitude. High altitude trekking is more strenuous than an equivalent length walk at low altitude.

Getting There

  • Many airlines offer the option of flying from regional airports in the UK, avoiding the need to make your own way to London. Due to the timing of flights, in some cases this may involve an overnight stop in London or another intermediate airport. There is usually a supplement for regional departures. Please note that most of our flights depart from London.

  • You can upgrade to business class or premium economy on most airlines. Prices start from £199 each way for Premium Economy and £699 each way for Business Class, although sometimes airlines have special offers and prices may be lower. Call us for prices for the route and airline you are interested in.

    Premium Economy

    Some airlines offer Premium Economy cabins, which provide more comfortable seats which recline further and have more legroom. There are better meals and a bar service.

    Other airlines offer standard economy class seats with extra legroom for additional cost.

    Business Class

    Many airlines have long haul business class cabins with seats which convert into full flat beds and often have a privacy screen.

    Business Class within Europe is often similar to economy class seating, but with better meals and middle seats are often left empty.

  • Most scheduled airlines have a baggage allowance of 23kg per passenger for international flights, but internal flight allowances can be less. Exact limits can be found on airline webpages. Please bear this in mind when packing, as carrying excess baggage will normally incur an expensive additional cost payable at check in. Additionally, certain excursions have a limited baggage allowance. Where this is the case, we will advise you in advance. Llama Travel accepts no responsibility for the delay, loss or damage of luggage.

    There may be additional luggage restrictions for specific countries. In this case, details of this will be in the country information below.

  • Many airlines now charge a fee to select your seat prior to checking in for your flight, even when travelling in premium economy or business class. Alternatively, you may choose your preferred seat free of charge when online check-in opens 24 hours prior to departure or at the airport. Please ask us about the options available at time of booking.

    We all want a comfortable journey, particularly on long haul flights. If you would like a seat with some extra leg room or a larger recline please let us know. Airlines have introduced a range of “economy comfort” seats that may be purchased in advance. In some cases, these seats may only be purchased online directly with the airline once Llama Travel has issued your ticket approximately 30 days prior to departure.

    For internal flights, and for connecting flights in Europe, it is usually only possible to select seats when you check-in online or at the airport.

                        

    It may not be possible to always use online check-in systems, especially when using a codeshare flight. On occasion, your preferred seat may be changed by the airline for operational reasons such as a change of aircraft or to facilitate a disabled passenger on the day you fly and as such, Llama Travel cannot guarantee specific seats.

  • Depending on the route and the airline, if you would like to break your journey to or from your final destination, and add a stopover to your holiday, this may be possible. Please ask us for information.

  • If you are interested in arranging your own international flights, this is sometimes possible. Please ask us for details of this and any discount we can arrange for removing international flights. Please do not book your flights until we have reconfirmed all services with our suppliers and you have checked the confirmation invoice.

  • All people transiting in a third country need to make sure they comply with any immigration requirements for that country.

    This is especially the case when in transit in the UK when flying to Latin America. In this case, you must comply with US immigration requirements. It is your responsibility to ensure that you comply with these requirements before you travel. Failure to do so may result in you being denied boarding on your flight to the US and, at best, a last-minute and probably expensive re-routing avoiding the US. It is important, therefore, that you follow these procedures carefully.

    If your flight to Latin America involves a stop in the US, you will be subject to US immigration control upon entry to the US. If you qualify for the US Visa Waiver Program, you are able to avoid the need to apply for a visa, but still need to enter your details online on the US State Department website. If you do not qualify for the US Visa Waiver Program, you must apply in person at a US embassy for a US visa. Please make sure that you do this in good time.

    If you are a UK citizen and have a UK passport, you may qualify for visa-free travel. You will require a machine readable passport to qualify for the ESTA Visa Waiver Program (so you do not require a visa to enter the US). A machine readable passport has the holder's personal details (name, date of birth, nationality and passport number) contained in two lines of text at the bottom of the photo page. This appears as two lines of letters, numbers and chevrons (">>>>>") printed across the long edge of the photo page. It must be also include an integrated circuit chip capable of storing the biographic information from the data page, a digitized photograph and other biometric information.

    Please note, holders of passports indicating that the bearer is a British Subject, a British Dependent Territories Citizen, British Overseas Citizen, British National (Overseas) Citizen or British Protected Person do not qualify for travel without a visa. A passport which states that the holder has Right of Abode or indefinite leave to remain in the UK does not quality for visa-free travel.

    If you have been arrested, even if the arrest did not result in a criminal conviction, or if you have a criminal record, you will need a visa.

    If you have any doubts about whether you qualify for the Visa Waiver Program, please check with the US embassy. Full details can be found on the US embassy’s UK website at: http://london.usembassy.gov/vwp3.html

    Many European, Australian and New Zealand passport holders also qualify for the Visa Waiver Program as long as the passport is machine readable and complies with the relevant criteria. Please see the US embassy website for a list of countries which qualify for the Visa Waiver Program. It is important that you check the website of the US Embassy in the country of passport nationality for any further changes before you travel.

    Details of the ESTA Visa Waiver Program can be found on the US State Department website at

    https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov.

    In addition to the Visa Waiver Programme, the US Transportation Security Authority requires anybody flying through the United Sates to supply specific passenger information prior to their international flight.

  • A holiday in Latin America or Africa inevitably means long haul flights, and usually at least one overnight sector. Air fares vary from date to date and between airlines. Our holidays are scheduled to use the most advantageous air fare. You can choose which airline you prefer, we will let you know if a supplement is payable. Levels of onboard service and facilities, such as entertainment, vary by airline and route. Please ask us for details. Flights are sometimes operated by another airline in the appropriate airline alliance.

Travelling in Albania

  • Albania has a variety of climate systems, with its coastline facing the Ionian and Adriatic Seas and its highlands backed upon the elevated Balkan landmass. The coastal lowlands have a typically Mediterranean climate with mild winters averaging 7°C and summer temperatures averaging 32°C The interior has a continental climate with mild winters averaging 6.5°C and summer temperatures averaging 24.5°C. Rainfall is more abundant during the autumn and winter months and is at a minimum in summer when there is seldom precipitation.

    A variety of clothing, suitable for temperate and warm conditions is advisable. Showers are not common, however, a light rain jacket is recommended. As the old towns of Berat, Gjirokastër and Krujë are built in mountainous areas it is advisable to pack comfortable footwear with ankle support. There are opportunities to swim along the Albanian Riviera, pack a swimsuit, sandals and other beach paraphernalia for this.

    Sunscreen is recommended

    Electricity in Albania is 230V, and plugs are of the round two-pin type.

    Please bring any medication you may require from the UK.

  • The currency in Albania is the LEK (approximate exchange rate: £1 = L145). Most prices in Albania are priced in LEK, but the EURO is also widely accepted. Travellers should take EURO and not UK sterling, which is not widely accepted. Credit and Debit cards are not widely accepted in many establishments, but can be used to withdraw money from cash machines. These dispense both LEK and EURO.

    It is always recommended to inform your bank that you are travelling abroad and to which countries. This will allow them to authorise money withdrawals on your account when you are away. Some banks say that this is not necessary, however we would still recommend contact with your bank as in some cases people have had difficulty in withdrawing currency.

    All hotels include a good breakfast, and other meals are included on some tours and excursions. However, generally, you will need to arrange your own lunches and dinners. We recommend budgeting approximately £15-20 for a three-course meal £5 for a good bottle of wine, £2 for a beer or soft drink and 50p for a big bottle of water. Throughout Albania there are opportunities to shop for souvenirs and we advise setting aside some of your budget for this purpose.

    If you receive good service, you may want to leave a tip. This is completely at your discretion. It is standard to tip 5-10% for table service in restaurants.  If you would like to tip guides, €3 – 4 per person per day is usual if you are in a group. Approximately €2 - 3 is usual for drivers or transfer staff. 

  • Albanian cuisine is mixture of different influences from the Balkans, Greece and Turkey. Typical traditional dishes include byrek a fil pastry pie usually filled with spinach a and cheese, Fërgesë a cream of fresh peppers, tomatoes and cottage cheese often served with hearty bread, Tavë Kosi a tasty quiche-like dish made with lamb, eggs and yoghurt. Kaçkavall is a traditional cheese salty cheese that can be served baked or fired. Grilled meats are very popular throughout the country and are often served with grilled vegetables.