Raft, Kayak and Hike Albania

Albania

Explore Albania and help save the Vjosa; Europe’s last wild, free-flowing river.

Itinerary

Day 1: Kayak from Butrint to Alo Pasha Castle

You'll meet your guide at 9:45 am at the seaport in Seranda. The action begins as you kayak along the Ionian coastline from the Butrint amphitheatre to the historic Ali Pasha Castle. After lunch, you’ll be taken to Lukove, a small, traditional village with breathtaking beaches and clear waters. When you arrive, you’ll go on an easy hike to one of the most beautiful beaches in this area - Krorez Bay. It's here that you'll have an opportunity to enjoy some swimming in the unspoilt coves. Don’t forget your snorkel and underwater camera.

Heading back to Saranda for the evening, you’ll stop off at the Porto Palermo castle if time allows it; a historic site with a story almost as romantic as the views you’ve seen throughout your hike today.

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After breakfast, you'll head to the small town of Permet, where you'll begin your adrenaline-fueled afternoon of rafting on the Vjosa River. Its entire 270km course is wild and untamed with beautiful canyons and small islands. The Vjosa River is a class III rafting course, so prepare for waves up to four feet, and narrow passages that send the boat shimmying and water gushing over the sides.

To wind you down into the evening, you’ll visit the Thermal Baths of Benja and hike to the Canyon of Lengarica where you can relax and enjoy a swim in their natural waters. You’ll then head to a local homestay for the evening in Permet, where you can enjoy a barbecue of local food to the sound of traditional music.

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This morning, you’ll be taken to a hike around Gjirokastra - an ancient city with plenty of opportunities to learn about the local history. After lunch, it’s time to say goodbye as you head back to the seaport for your forwarding journey to Corfu airport. You can decide whether you’re going to spend your last hours at the beach of Saranda or Corfu before flying back home. (Ferry departs at 4 pm)

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FAQs

Included

  • Guides
  • Accommodation
  • Seaport transfers
  • Equipment
  • Local transport
  • Meals as described

Excluded

  • Ferry from Corfu
  • International flights
  • Travel insurance
  • Visa (if applicable)

Start: You’ll meet your guide at 9:45 am on day 1 of your itinerary. This will be at the seaport of Saranda, which matches the arrival time of the ferry coming from Corfu. Your host suggests catching the 9 am ferry from Corfu to Saranda.

End: You’ll arrive back to the seaport for the ferry departing on day 3 of your itinerary at 4 pm. 

You’ll spend your first night in a comfortable apartment in Saranda. The apartment has air-conditioning, a TV and a seating area. The hotel also offers free WiFi. On your second night, you'll stay at a homestay in Peshtan village. 

The groups are a maximum of 16 people. 

Yes absolutely! We get lots of solo travellers. It's a great way to meet like-minded people.

This trip is aimed at beginners, with a moderate to a good level of fitness. You'll go on a few easy hikes, on fairly flat trails. The river is grade 3. You will need to have the ability to swim.

Scientific knowledge of the Vjosa river is extremely limited. We know more about the eco-systems in the rivers of South America and Asia than the Vjosa. Many endangered species, like the European Eel and the Greater Flamingo, depend on the providence of the free-flowing waters of the Vjosa for their livelihood.

However, the Albanian government is planning on building a series of hydroelectric dams upstream, which would threaten the homes of the river’s species and the livelihood of the river-bank’s residents.

By supporting the Vjosa’s local businesses, we can empower them to continue their fight against the proposed plans to destroy this wild place.

The best months for hiking and adventure activities in Albania are February to June, and September to November - temperatures can reach 30 degrees Celcius. July and August can be hotter, however this is usually broken up by cool coastal breezes.

Albanian food is hearty and healthy, usually based around meat and vegetables - much of which is seasonal and sourced locally. Popular dishes include turkey or lamb, served with a local bread known as Kulac, a meat and leek pie made with a 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 the local vineyards.

Day 1: Lunch

Day 2: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3: Breakfast, Lunch

  • Breathable light-weight waterproof gear (Goretex, Sympatex, etc)
  • Wind-stopper jackets
  • Small backpack with rain coverage
  • Snorkelling equipment
  • Cap
  • Sun cream
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Headtorch
  • Hiking poles (optional)
  • Water bottle
  • Sunglasses
  • Swimming gear
  • Clothing for the evening
  • Toiletries 
  • Personal medication
  • Camera, mobile phone (dry bag to keep them in)

There are direct flights from all over the UK to Corfu Airport from a number of different airlines. Choose any flight that suits you best. Your host will contact you before you leave to check your arrival and departure plans. Additional information about the ferry schedule can be found here. 

Day 1: 2 hours kayaking, 3 hours hiking, 1-hour swimming

Day 2: 2.5 hours rafting, 3 hours hiking and swimming

Day 3: 2 hours hiking

Provided by Albania Rafting

Skyhook Adventure is an Authorised Agent of Albania Rafting. Please familiarise yourself with the Albania Rafting Terms & Conditions and Skyhook Adventure's Terms & Conditions.