Enigmatic Albania 2021

Hidden Gem of Europe

Trip Scholar: Prof Peter Sarris

Reader in late Roman, Medieval and Byzantine History
University of Cambridge

10 day tour
Price from £2,395

Departing 02 June 2021

Discover Albania’s glorious scenery, fascinating culture and world-class archaeology now it has emerged from decades of Communist isolation.  Join trip scholar Professor Peter Sarris, an expert in Roman and Byzantine Europe, to gain unique historical and cultural insights as you explore this charming country. You will visit UNESCO-listed ruins and protected hillside towns, and will walk in the shoes of the ancient Romans along the Via Egnatia, discovering a host of classical sites including Antigonea, Byllis, Oricum and the former Greek colony of Durres.

Tour highlights

  • Visit the UNESCO-listed ruins of Butrint, where Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Venetian and Ottoman remains, including a magnificent theatre, are set amidst a beautiful lake
  • Stroll around Gjirokastra’s 600 preserved Ottomanera stone houses, quaint cobbled streets and imposing 4th-century castle
  • Uncover the remains of the great classical city of Apollonia
  • Delight in Albania’s monasteries, churches and basilicas, with their lavish mosaics and unique frescoes
  • Discover the story of Caesar’s Civil War with Pompey, of which many crucial battles which were fought in Illyria, leaving the region littered with atmospheric sites

Itinerary at a glance

Day 1:    Tour starts in Tirana with a road transfer to MAK Tirana Hotel | Overnight Tirana
Day 2:    National History & Archaeological Museum | World Headquarters of liberal Bektashi | Overnight Tirana
Day 3:    Travel to Apollonia | Continue to Vlorë to visit Archaeological Museum | Overnight Saranda
Day 4:    Visit UNESCO Ancient City of Butrint | Overnight Saranda
Day 5:    Ancient site of Antigonea | UNESCO town of Gjirokastër | Overnght Gjirokastër
Day 6:    Old town of Gjirokastër | Visit Arms Museum and the castle | Village of Labova | Overnight Gjirokastër
Day 7:    Drive to UNESCO city of Berat with a stop at 4th Century city of Byllis | Overnight Berat
Day 8:    Travel to Durrës and visit the main sites | Drive to Kruja | Overnight Kruja
Day 9:     Visit Shkodra archaeological museum & renovated Old Town | Stop at Lezha | Overnight Kruja
Day 10:   Kruja old Bazaar  |  Those on recommended flights are transferred to the airport for flight home

Dates and Prices
Prices are in UK£, per person, based on double occupancy

2-11 June 2021
Room TypePriceSingle SupplementOptional Flight from LondonAvailability
Standard Twin/Double£2,395£240£200 return approxAvailable

Inclusions
Twin or double bedroom with a private bathroom, full board, all excursions with local guides including entrance fees, transfers and expert leader.

Exclusions
International flights, meals on Day 1 and lunch and dinner on Day 10, travel insurance, drinks, tips to drivers & local guides, items of a personal nature.

Optional flights
Temple World can arrange flights from London to coordinate with this tour. We recommend flying with BA from Gatwick to Tirana at 16:45, arriving 20:50. The return flight is at 13:00 arriving 15:10. The ticket cost starts from £180 per person including taxes, return.  Other airline rates and indirect departures from regional airports may be available. We will arrange a group transfer to and from the airport to coincide with the flight/departure time to the British Airways flight. Private transfers to meet any flight are possible at a small supplement.

Booking your own travel
Clients wishing to use airmiles to buy or upgrade flights are advised to book their own flights.  The start and end point of the tour is Tirana.

*Very important! Those who plan to book their own flights should not make any binding or non-refundable arrangements until their place has been confirmed in writing on the tour and Temple World has confirmed that it is a guaranteed departure

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Immunisations                                                                                                                

NHS Fit For Travel advises travellers to Albania are usually recommended to immunise against: Tetanus, Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Rabies and Tick-Borne Encephalitis (TBE). Yellow Fever Certificate is required if entering from an area with risk of yellow fever transmission. Please seek professional medical advice at least 8 week before departure. NHS Fit For Travel Website

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Entry Regulations

British citizens can enter and remain in Albania for a maximum of 90 days in every 6-month period without a visa.  Your passport should be valid for a minimum period of 3 months from the date of entry into Albania.



Fitness Guideline

We have graded the fitness level required for participation in this tour as Moderate. There is quite a lot of walking in the tour, on uneven paths such as archaeological sites or in conditions which might be an uneven and rough.  There may not be anywhere to rest or sit down regularly.  Not suitable for those who require walking aids. There are strenuous walks and sightseeing might be ‘on the go’ for several hours at a time, without breaks to sit down and rest.  It is important that everyone is able to keep up with the group.  Tour participants over 80 will be asked to provide a letter of fitness from their GP. Please contact us for a full fitness briefing.

Trip Scholar
Professor Peter Sarris, FHS, Oxon. Reader in late Roman, Medieval and Byzantine History, University of Cambridge
Peter Sarris read Modern History at Balliol College, Oxford (1990-93), after which he was elected to a Prize Fellowship (by examination) at All Souls College, Oxford (where he was a Fellow from 1993 to 2006). He moved to Cambridge as a University Lecturer and Fellow of Trinity College in 2000, and has held Visiting Fellowships at Rice University, Texas, and the Dumbarton Oaks Research Library, Washington D.C. (Harvard University). Professor Sarris is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, a member of the Society for the Promotion of Byzantine Studies and Director of the Virtual Centre for Late Antiquity.  He has published extensively on the social, economic and legal history of Late Antiquity, the Early Middle Ages and Byzantium, with a particular focus on the political economy of the East Roman Empire from the fourth to sixth centuries, the transmission of Roman economic and legal culture, and the background to the rise of Islam. His current research focuses on the development of Eurasian trading networks between Constantinople, Persia, Central Asia and China, and also on the emergent contours of the ‘confessional state’ in the age of Justinian.  Professor Sarris is an engaging lecturer who has proved a popular trip scholar on previous Alumni tours.

Lectures during our tours
All our tours are accompanied by an academic ‘trip scholar’ as well as local guides. The local guide or guides provide the day-to-day guiding on our tours, whilst the trip lecturer will give regular lectures on his/her specialist subject throughout to provide an academic overview. Lectures/talks usually last 30-40 minutes including questions and answers (if applicable). These are generally held in the evenings before dinner and attendance is optional. We don’t usually specify before travel which days the lectures will be given (for operational reasons) but guests can expect them roughly every other day as a minimum, with some lecturers giving some kind of talk or presentation more frequently.

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OUR ALUMNI TOURS

Ann and I wish to say how wonderful the trip to Namibia turned out to be. It was unforgettable with wonderful scenery, geology and wild life. We had a wonderful time, with great accommodation and excellent food. Ann & Graham

Congenial Companions

Our small group tours are exclusively available to alumni of Oxford and Cambridge universities and their friends and family, making for a wonderful atmosphere amongst like-minded individuals.

Expert Lecturer

All our small group alumni tours are accompanied by a university lecturer as well as local guides, with illuminating lectures given throughout the tour to enrich understanding of the destination.

To reserve a place on one of our small group alumni tours, contact us for availability then send us a signed booking form and deposit.

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Registered number: 1960794 (England and Wales) Registered office: East House, 109 Warple Way, London SW14 8TN

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