In spiritual sphere, in possessing or creating values never have Albanians had any reason to envy or covet others, much less have they any for such today.
The Albanians are the creators and bearers of one of humankind's fundamental languages, a language that has its unshakable place among a dozen or so of the main languages of the world.
One of the first Europe's Christian countries, Albania has consequently been the original soil of the Western European civilization.From the great hymn of Christianity "Te Deum" written by an Albanian Archbishop over fifteen hundreds years ago, to the teacher of Western civilization George Kastriot, the most sublime and renowned character in the world not only of Albanians, but of all Balkan peoples as well, described as "the Athlete of Christ", to the Albanian nun Mother Teresa, the most famous Albanian woman in today's world, the proof of civilization passes through like a brilliant thread, so much and so persistently denied by the ill-wishers of Albanian nation.
Ismail Kadare - "The Albanian Nation at the threshold of the third millenium"
Area: 28.748 sq. km.
Local time: GTM +1 ( GTM +2 between the end of April and the end of October)
Currency: Albanian Leke (1 euro = 139 leke)
Capital: Tirana (population of 553.435)
Political system: Parliamentary Republic
Religion: Muslim, Orthodox and Catholic
Climate: Mediterranean climatic zone
Airport: Rinas Tirana International Airport (Mother Teresa)
Railways: 447 km
Albania has been inhabited before 100,000 years. At the beginning of the third millennium BC, the Indo-European population settled in this territory. As a result of the mixture, a population incorporating the unique cultural and linguistic characterizes of the whole Balkan Peninsula (pellazgët) was created.
Based on the ancient population, the Illyrians developed through the second millennium and the first century BC. After its fall in the year 30 BC, Illyria came under the control of the Roman Empire and with the division of the Roman Empire (395 AD), Illyria became part of the Byzantine Empire.
The country has suffered continuous invasions over the last 1000 years and by the end of the 14th century Albania was, despite of the Albanian resistance led by national hero Scanderbeg, occupied by the Ottoman Empire. Albania has been under the Ottoman regime for more than 400 years, but the subsequent efforts and insurrections for independence eventually brought the independence in 1912.
Albania was continuously attacked by neighboring countries since the independence until the end of the First World War. After 11 years of being a monarchy, Albania was occupied by Mussolini’s forces in 1939, which has put an end to the monarchy. In 1943 the country was occupied by German forces. The resistance against foreign invasions is known as Anti-Fascist National Liberation Front. When foreign forces left the country in November 1944, the Communist party took over. Shortly thereafter, the totalitarian regime was established under the leadership of the communist leader Enver Hoxha. For 50 years, the regime applied the policy of self-isolation, leaving the country in great economic poverty when it finally emerged from their isolation in 1991. From the end of 1991 until 1997, the country was led by the Democratic Party. After the unrests of 1997, due to the failure of pyramidal schemes, the Socialist Party and its allies were in power. From 2005 until June 2013 the Democratic Party was in power again. After the last elections in June 2013, the coalition of the Socialist Party is back in charge of the country.
Albania is situated on the border with Montenegro and Kosovo in the North and North East, FYR Macedonia in the East and Greece in the South. Albania is in the West of the Balkan Peninsula and is washed by the Adriatic and the Ionian seas.
Albania surprises their visitors with the diversity of its landscapes, which can change quickly and dramatically. The landscapes in the West and South West are typically Mediterranean, in the North there are the Albanian Alps and the center of the country is a mix of these two. The coastline of Albania is a hidden gem in Europe, with its 460 km of virgin and fine sandy beaches. Albania also has plenty of stunning lakes, natural lagoons and natural parks.
Albania has a Mediterranean climate, but because of its mountainous character and broken relief, the climate varies throughout the country.
Albania is characterized by hot and dry summers with bright sunny days, and by mild winters with bountiful rainfall.
In the Northern part of Albanian, known as the Albanian Alps, the winters are cold and summers chilly.
The period from June to September is characterized by hot and sunny weather, while October to May is cool and wet.
Albania can be visited throughout the whole year, but the best months to visit this beautiful country are April, May and June, as well September, October and November. The months July and August might be too warm for a tour, but if you are visiting Albania for the beach with short day excursions, it is a perfect destination!
Passport and visa information
All foreigners who have a valid multi-entry Schengen visa (type C or D), or a valid residence permit in one of the Schengen states, can enter Albania without a visa.
Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Chili, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Holland, Hungary, Ireland, Island, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kosovo, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Malaysia, Malta, Monaco, Montenegro, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania , Russia, San Marino, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, USA and Ukraine.
All the other foreigners must have a visa before entering Albania.