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A TREK THROUGH THE BALKANS

from £1895
The natural beauty of the Balkans takes you back to the Alps of over 50 years ago. Signposts are rare but your local guide knows the paths intimately.
  • Product Code 23500
  • Holiday Type Hutting And High Level
  • Grade Grade 8
  • Holiday Duration 14 Nights

Guided Walking Holidays - A Trek through the Balkans

The natural beauty of the Balkans takes you back to the Alps of over 50 years ago. Signposts are rare but your local guide knows the paths intimately. This is a continuous walk through three very different mountain areas in the countries of Montenegro, Albania and Kosovo where we take in the best parts of these countries with some additional summits being conquered. We start on the shores of Kotor Bay and make our way along ancient trading routes to the summits of the Albanian Alps. Experience this journey with Ramblers Walking Holidays.

We begin in Kotor, with time to hike the city walls, or perhaps take a dip in the fjord before we commence our epic trek.  

Our base for the next two nights is Njegusi village, from where we take on the first of our summits in the Lovcen National Park with a loop hike to the Jezerski summit at 1657m where the mausoleum of Petar II Petrovic Njegos, a famous Montenegrin prince-bishop, poet and philosopher is located.

Continuing on through Montenegro, we walk through the Biogradska ancient forest to our base in Katun Vranjak, where we can tackle the peaks of Troglava (2072m), Kekova (2117m) or Crna Glava (2139m), and visit Pesica Lake. From Katun Stavna, we climb to the summit of Kom i Kucki. At 2487m the highest peak in the Komovi Mountains.

From the hamlet of Vusanje, we will attempt to climb the highest peak of the tour, Maja e Kollate. At 2552m this is a demanding climb; initially through forest then across limestone pavement, past an Ice Cave to a col at 2032m and, if conditions allow, on to the summit. The following day we walk on over the Albania border to Thethi. After exploring the village, we trek over Qafa e Valbonës and descend to Villa Gjecaj on the edge of Valbona.

From the village of Valbona we climb our final summit of Maja e Rosit (2524m), where the majestic view of the Valbonë Valley will take your breath away. This will be a demanding walk involving 1600m of ascent, but we will be ready, and well trained by this point. Our final stop is the historic city of Kruje, where we’ll have time to reflect on our rewarding and spectacular journey.


Holiday Highlights

  • Trek though unspoilt wild terrain in some of the world’s youngest countries with a local guide and your tour leader.
  • See spectacular views from mountain summits.
  • Take one of the world’s classic boat trips along the lake of Komani, a narrow flooded gorge.
  • Walk in The Proklatija National Park and the stunning mountain range between Montenegro and Albania.
  • Discover the Biogradsko National Park and the Komovi Hills.
The holiday inclusions and exclusions at a glance
What's included in this holiday Items that are covered in the cost of holiday price.

      Return flights from Gatwick to Dubrovnik returning Tirana to Gatwick (British Airways)
      Airport transfers
      Accommodation in local guest houses, small hotels and mountain huts
      Meals on a full board basis
      All local transport costs.
Whats not included in this holiday Items that are not covered in the cost of holiday price.

  • Entrance fees to some museums and historic buildings (unless otherwise specified)
  • Personal expenses (such as your bar bill)
  • Discretionary tips
  • Optional excursions
  • Insurance
Please select Departure Date to view:

Please see Holiday Information Sheet for this holidays individual departures itinerary (located under View Departures & Book tab)

Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the outlined itinerary and advertised program, local conditions can change due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances. This may mean that routes and timings need to be amended or the order of days may change, sometimes at short notice.

This departure: Grade 8

  1. Day 1

    We fly to Dubrovnik Airport (Croatia) and travel by road across the border and into Montenegro. We continue on to Kotor, where we will spend our first night. Depending on what time we arrive, we can visit Kotor Old Town with its Venetian influenced architecture or perhaps take a dip in the fjord.

  2. Day 2

    We walk from Kotor to Njegusi village, as we leave the ramparts of Kotor behind us we travel away from modern civilization and into rural untouched Montenegrin countryside. We follow a zig-zag path up the steep hillside immediately above Kotor giving fantastic views of the fjord. We arrive in Njegusi village where we stay for the following two nights. 12.7km, ascent 1020m / descent 180m, 5hrs 25mins.

  3. Day 3

    We take a loop hike to Jezerski summit at 1657m where the mausoleum of Petar II Petrovic Njegos; a famous Montenegrin prince-bishop, poet and philosopher is located. Climbing the 461 steps to the mausoleum from the road is a feat in itself! We descend back to Njegusi village. 20.5km, ascent / descent 1000m, 6hrs 30 mins. 

  4. Day 4

    We leave Njegusi village and travel by road (three hours) including through spectacular gorges to Lake Biogradska. It is then a long climb of over 1,000m to a high ridge with great views and then a long ridge walk to Katun Vranjak. Our accommodation for the night is a group of shepherds huts. 19km, ascent 1089m / descent 450m, 7hrs

  5. Day 5

    Today is a much easier day, and will allow us to relax and recover with some less strenuous walks taking us to the peaks of Troglava (2072m), and Zekova Glava (2117m). The views never disappoint, rewarding you with yet further impressive mountain panoramas. 14km, ascent / descent 642m, 5hrs.

  6. Day 6

    We embark on a long but relatively gentle transit walk, at altitude, along good quality tracks through alpine meadows and upland pastures through Krivi and over Tresnjevik hill (1750), before arriving at our chalets just below the Komovi Mountains. 22km, ascent 700m, decent 741m, 5hrs 45mins.

  7. Day 7

    An excellent day, and an opportunity to climb to the summit of Kom i Kucki. At 2487m this is one of the highest peaks in Montenegro’s Komovi Mountains. While this is the smallest of the three limestone peaks on the tour, it is the most difficult ascent in technical terms. It involves significant scrambling and the transit of a narrow and exposed ridge. The rewards are a great sense of achievement and some magnificent views of the Komovi Mountains. 13.4km, ascent / descent 1063m, 7hrs 40mins.

  8. Day 8

    We have an easier day to recuperate. We spend the morning walking mostly downhill on a good path to the village of Andrejevica. Here we will be met by transport to take us to our accommodation in Vusanje. From this point we are in the beautiful and wild area of the Prokletije National Park. 14.4km, ascent 230m descent 1149m, 4hrs.

  9. Day 9

    After a night in rooms above a small restaurant serving great food, we will attempt to climb the highest peak of the tour, Maja e Kollate. At 2552m this is the highest peak in Montenegro and is a demanding climb; through forest initially then across a broad field of limestone, past an Ice Cave to a col at 2032m and thence steeply up to the summit, if conditions allow. 20.7km, ascent / descent 1700m, 8hrs 40 mins.

  10. Day 10

    Today we have an early start from the Montenegrin village of Vusanje with full packs and make a long but gentle ascent up a beautiful valley to the Albanian border and then further to a high pass (Qafa e Pejes) between spectacular limestone peaks. After this it is a steep descent to the village of Theth, our next centre for the following two nights. 22km, ascent 1268m, descent 1487m, 9hrs.

  11. Day 11

    After two hard days, we enjoy a relaxing day exploring the valley below Theth where we see a “tower of refuge” and an impressive waterfall. 9km, ascent / descent 254m, 4hrs.

  12. Day 12

    This is another transfer day. We leave Theth and head uphill to a high pass (Qafa el Valbone) and then descend into the Valbone valley through pine and beech woods to eventually reach the village of Valbone. 16km, ascent 1130m descent 1146m, 6hrs 30mins. 

  13. Day 13

    We climb the last of our summits at Maja e Rosit (2524m) back on the Montenegro / Albanian border, where the majestic view of the Valbone¨ Valley and the rugged peaks of the Albanian border takes the breath away. This will be a demanding walk involving 1600m of ascent. This is a great but strenuous final walk. 18km, ascent / descent 1760m, 8hrs 30 mins. 

  14. Day 14

    We leave Valbone by bus for around one hour before we reach Fierza at the head of a spectacular flooded gorge. From here we take a two hour ferry ride down the gorge. We are met at the far end by a bus which takes us all the way to Kruje – a tourist village on a hill overlooking Tirana where we will enjoy the luxury of our excellent 4 star hotel.

  15. Day 15

    We transfer from Kruje to Tirana for our return flight back to the UK.

Travel Details

  • Return flights from Gatwick to Dubrovnik returning fromTirana to Gatwick (British Airways) or vice versa.
  • Airport transfers by road 2 hours
  • Upgrades are available on most flights. For scheduled flights this may be Premium Economy, Business or First Class. Most low-cost carriers also have extra legroom seats. 
  • If direct regional flights are not available, we can often offer add-on flights to a London airport at a competitive rate. Please ask us for details and a competitive quote.

Trip Map

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Hotel Panorama, Kruja

Hotel Panorama is a hotel situated centrally in Kruja , near the Rinas Tirana Airport offering its guests the atmosphere of a grand hotel with modern amenities, including a lift to all levels. Some of the rooms have balconies where you can relax and enjoy the amazing views across the town and the surrounding mountainous countryside. There is a restaurant and bar as well as free WiFi and air conditioning throughout the hotel.


Kadmi Chalets, Njegusi

In Njegusi we stay in the Kadmi Chalets, another spot that serves as an ideal base for accessing the trails into the mountains. The chalets are basic but adequate, coming with free Wi-Fi, a TV, private bathrooms and some with mountain views. The chalet area has an emphasis on local culture and produce. The restaurant has a large outdoor section as well as indoor, perfect for enjoying the mountains when the weather is fine. Here you can enjoy local specialities such as smoked ham and cheese.


Katun Stavna, Komovi

In Komovi we stay in Katun Stavna, a group of well-appointed wooden chalets in the Alpine style. They sit nestled high in the mountains with a panorama of forests, valleys and peaks to enjoy. Gaze up at mount Komovi, only 2km away as you rest after a days hiking. These chalets add to the experience of getting away from it all in the peaceful mountains, and are set right on the trails. Each chalet has a living room, terrace on the top floor, bathroom and a wood stove. Beds are mostly placed in the attic. The restaurant serves excellent local and national cuisine.


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