and Greek Island of Corfu
Folk Dancing, Folk Music, History, Culture, Art, and Adventure!
When: May 24-June 3, 2023
Led by: Lee Otterholt
Guided by Kliti Zika
Kosovo extension: June 3-5
★ See Tirana, Durres, Vlora, Kruja, Saranda,
Berat, Butrinti, Gjirokastra, and Shkoder
★ Visit three UNESCO World Heritage sites
★ Explore the Greek Island of Corfu
★ Meet Albanian folk dance groups
★ Folk dance with local Albanian teachers
★ International dancing with Lee Otterholt
★ Price includes transfers, hotels, private bus, guide,
sightseeing, all breakfasts and dinners
Price: Albania Land Only: $4495
Kosovo extension: $995
I can’t wait to go! Reserve my place with
my $200 deposit per person.
See registration form and information below.
Or register through PayPal (no PayPal account necessary)
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Download Albania and Corfu itinerary pdf
Day 1: Wednesday, May 24: Wednesday
Depart on airlines of your choice to Albania.
Day 2: Thursday, May 25:
Transfer from Tirana International Airport to our hotel in Durres. Welcome dinner in a traditional restaurant. Overnight in the Arvi Hotel
Day 3: Friday May 26: Durres-Apollonia-Vlore
Morning walking tour of Durres. Then we’ll drive through Albania’s oil fields towards the 7th century BC archaeological site of Apollonia, second largest Greek colony in Albania. We’ll explore the Odeon, Pritaneon, and Temple of Diana. Then a scenic drive along the coast of Vlora Bay, through the Coldwater tunnel, next to the ex-dictator’s villa. Before arriving to Vlora, a short stop at the island Monastery of Zvernec surrounded by beautiful nature. Folk dancing with Lee and local teachers. Overnight in Vlora. Dinner and accommodation at Vlora International Hotel.
Day 4. Saturday, May 27: Vlora- Saranda
Drive along the spectacular Albanian Riviera looking down at the Ionian Sea. Upon leaving Radhima, the landscape dramatically changes as we climb to 1100 meters above sea level through the forest of Llogara National Park. Stop for refreshment and photos in Llogara, then continue on Strada Bianca road for a visit to a local family in Dhermi village where treats of raki and local deserts wait for us. Continue driving south through the seven villages of the Himara region. Lunch in local restaurant in Himara. The region of Himara is 72 kms is rich with natural and historical monuments such as Llamany beach and the 18th century Panormic castle of Ali Pasha. After a short coffee break at the springs of Borshi, we’ll continue our tour towards Saranda. Folk dancing with Lee and local teachers. Dinner in local restaurant by the sea. Overnight in Saranda’s Brilant Hotel.
Day 5-6: Sunday-Monday, May 28-29: Saranda-Corfu
Depart by ferry for three days on the sun swept Ionian island of Corfu. World Heritage Old Town and miles of scenic coastline. Relax, swim, sunbath, tour, visit archaeological museums, or stroll the beaches. Delve into the myths of ancient Greece.. Overnights in Corfu Holiday Palace Hotel.
Day 7: Tuesday, May 30: Corfu-Butrinti – Gjirokastra
Take the ferry from Corfu back to Saranda. Then drive to 7th century BC city of Butrinti, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. See Asclepeion temple, Roman baths, and aqueduct to learn more about the history of this town, originating as a Greek colony in the 7th century BC. Visit the museum in the 14th century Venetian castle. Drive towards Gjirokastra, a UNESCO World Heritage town, tour the 14th century castle. Gjirokastra is best known as the birthplace of Enver Hoxha, dictator of Albania (1908-1985). His house is an ethnographic museum open to visitors. Folk dancing with Lee and local teachers. Dinner and overnight at Cajupi Hotel in Gjirokastra.
Day 8: Wednesday, May 31: Gjirokastra-Korca
Beautiful landscape drive to reach the cultural Capital of Albania, the city of Korca. Afternoon walk tour through the city to meet later with the famous dancer Bardhi Pojani. Overnight at Hotel Kocibelli
Day 9: Thursday, June 1: Korca-Berat
Morning drive to Berat, one of the most fascinating Albanian towns with a mixture of cultural influences. Established in the 3rd century B.C by an Illyrian tribe of central Albania, it was known as the fortified city of Antipatrea. In 1417 the town was occupied by the Turks who build mosques in the area below the town’s old castle. Berat, situated at the foot of Tomorri Mountain and on the shores of River Osum, is famous for its white-washed.houses with many windows which give it the nickname “town of a thousand windows”. Before arriving to Berat we will make a short visit at one of the famous winery in Albania for wine tasting. Lunch in local restaurant in Berat. The castle is the only one in Albania and perhaps one of the few in the World that still has houses and inhabitants within its walls, going about their daily life in exactly the same place their predecessors did centuries ago. We will visit the Fortress, Onufri Museum and several churches and mosques. Dinner in a traditional restaurant. Overnight in Berat. Hotel Onufri.
Day 10: Friday, June 2: Berat-Shkodra
After breakfast we’ll depart for Shkodra with its 4th century BC Illyrian castle. From the top of the castle we can look towards the horizon with views as far away as Montenegro in the northwest and Shkodra Lake in the northeast. Lunch in local restaurant in Shkodra. Dinner a traditional restaurant where Albanian highlands food is served.. Overnight in Shkodra. Colosseo Hotel.
Day 11: Saturday, June 3: Shkodra-Lezha-Kruja-Tirana
After breakfast, continue to the ancient town of Lissius, dating back to second
century BC. Explore the Roman castle and Saint Nicolas cathedral where the national hero, Scanderbeg is buried. Then drive to Kruja, Scanderbeg’s home town. We’ll tour a traditional carpet workshop located in the 18th century bazaar. Here you can find and purchase many excellent Albanian souvenirs and antiques. After lunch in traditional restaurant, in Kruja, we’ll explore the castle in which dwell the Bektashi—a little-known Muslim sect— Dollma Teqe (Bektashi Mosque). Later we’ll see the Ethnographic Museum located in a traditional house built in the 18th century A.D (1764), by Ismail Pashe Toptani. Proceed to Tirana. Dinner and folk dancing with Genc Kastrati. Overnight in Tirana International Hotel.
Day 12: Sunday, June 4: Tirana
After breakfast we’ll visit Et’Hem Bej Mosque, one of the most beautiful in Albania. Then see recently discovered ruins of Justinian castle near the center of Tirana. Drive to a private art gallery in an 18th century traditional Tirana House. While at the gallery, will have a rare opportunity to admire paintings dating back to the time of socialist realism. Afternoon at leisure. Evening We’ll explore the area where villas of Albanian communist leaders still stand. Nearby are boutiques, pubs and exclusive jewelry shops. Maybe Folk dancing local teachers. Dinner in local restaurant. Overnight in Tirana. Tirana International Hotel.
Day 13: Monday, June 5: Tirana
We’ll transfer you to Tirana international airport for your flight back home
Day 13: Monday, June 5: Prizren
For guests who decide for the Kosovo Extension, we continue after the delivery in the airport of the rest of the group: Drive towards Kosova to Prizren. Lunch on the way or in the Old City of Prizren, maybe free time. After checking in at our hotel, located in the heart of Old Town, we make a walking tour to visit this beautiful city. The Catholic Cathedral, 14th century Serbian Basilica, !6th century Mosque and the Museum of the Albanian League of 1878, are our highlights! The old city with such a moving history offers a lot from all the communities who are populating it till today, Albanians, Serbs, Turks, Bosnians and so on. Dinner in our Hotel or a restaurant in town Also, possible Folk Show. Overnight at Hotel Centrum.
Day 14: Tuesday, June 5: Peja, Gjakova
Morning drive northwards to Peja. On route visit Gjakova, with the renovated bazaar, after the burning during the last war, 1999. The Hadumi Mosque, one of the oldest in Balkans, is a highlight with the wall paintings and a very rare/old architecture. Later we drive to visit one of the most important Serbian Monasteries, Visoki Decani, where the Serbian king from the 14th century is buried. Lunch on the way (optional). Our journey continues to Pej, where we check in at our hotel, Hotel Dukagjini! For dinner we drive inside the marvelous Rugova Canion at a local restaurant where we can enjoy and dance together with the local folk group from Rugova.
Day 15: Wednesday, June 6: Wednesday
Transfer to the Airport of Prishtina
(People on the Kosovo extension should book return flight from Prishtina, not Tirana.
It is more convenient than driving back to Tirana … and the airfare from Prishtina is less expensive!)
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REGISTRATION FORM: I can’t wait to go! Enclosed is my registration deposit of $200 per person. Single supplement: $695. Kosovo extension: $995 Kosovo single supplement $275. Hotel taxes and service charges: $185. Gratuities and drinks during meals not included. Program subject to change without notice. With 20 participants, tour will be led by Lee Otterholt; less than 20 participants, tour will be led by Kliti Zika. Cancellations 90 days prior to departure: Total refund. Less than 90 days: No refund. Travel insurance recommended. Total balance due February 18, 2023.
Kosovo extension: Yes____ No_____
No. of people_______Phone_(___)_________________email_________________
Make checks payable to: Jim Gold International, 497 Cumberland Avenue, Teaneck, NJ 07666 U.S.A Phone (201) 836-0362. Web site: www.jimgold.com E-mail: email@example.com
Air Transportation: International air not included except as noted.
Rates: Tour rates are subject to change in the event of currency fluctuations or increase in costs. Inclusive tour rates are per person in double occupancy. In case of computer or human billing errors, we reserve the right to reinvoice clients with corrected billing.
Reservations: Deposits and Payments: Deposit of $200 per person is required at time of reservation. Balance is due 90 days prior to departure date.
Changes: Prices and program subject to change without notice
Baggage: One baggage per person and a carry on is allowed.
Cancellations: Cancellations 90 days prior to departure: Total refund. Less than 90 days: No refund. Additionally, any cancellation fees imposed by the respective hotels, airlines, tour companies and cruise lines will be charged. Travel Insurance is non-refundable as are unused services.
Gratuities: Tipping to guides, drivers, transfer personnel and hotel staff is left to the discretion of the participants and is not included.
Insurance: Tour participants are strongly recommended to purchase insurance for trip cancellation, trip interruption, accident, sickness and/or loss of baggage and personal effects.
Dispute Resolution: The sole and exclusive method of resolving any dispute which might rise under this agreement and any agreement between Jim Gold International, Inc., and another party (ies), the brochure or website and deemed to arise in the United States of America, shall be by arbitration before the American Arbitration Association in New York City pursuant to the Association’s rules then in effect. Any such arbitration must take place in N.Y.C., N.Y. In any such arbitration, the substantive law of N.Y. will apply. In the event a tour participant should find a service or hotel unacceptable, it should be reported immediately to the local representative and to Jim Gold International, Inc. upon their immediate return. No claim shall be deemed legitimate if not reported to the local representative and if reported after the scheduled service or after departure from the hotel.
Responsibility: Jim Gold International, Inc. Of 497 Cumberland Avenue, Teaneck, NJ 07666 U.S.A acts solely in its capacity as marketing agent on behalf of its suppliers such as air carriers, ground operator, taxi suppliers, motor coach suppliers, excursion or tour companies and hotels identified on documents supplied in connection with purchase of the tours. Jim Gold International, Inc. shall not be held responsible for any wrongful or negligent acts or omissions by any supplier or other party not directly owned or exclusively controlled by Jim Gold International, Inc. or by the failure of any equipment operated by any such supplier or other party. Jim Gold International, Inc. shall not be liable for any loss, injury or damage to person, property or otherwise, in connection with any accommodations, transportation, or other services, resulting directly or indirectly from any acts of God, dangerous incident to the sea, fire, breakdown of machinery or equipment, acts of government or other authorities, wars whether or not declared, hostilities, civil disturbances, strikes, riots, thefts, pilferage, epidemics, quarantines, medical or customs regulations, defaults, delays or cancellations of or changes to itineraries or schedules, or from any causes resulting from insufficient or improperly issued passports, visas, or other documents passports, visas, or other documents.
Neither Jim Gold International, Inc. nor any of its affiliates or subsidiaries shall be or become liable or responsible for any additional expenses or liability sustained or incurred by the tour member as a result of any of the aforementioned causes. Tour participant agrees that any claim against Jim Gold International, Inc. is subject only to the jurisdiction of the courts of the country in which the cause of action arose. The right is reserved to substitute hotels and to alter itineraries. The right is also reserved to cancel the tour prior to departure. If any tour is canceled prior to departure, Jim Gold International, Inc. will be responsible only up to the amount of monies Jim Gold International, Inc. received less any cancellation fee applied by a supplier as defined above. Travel Insurance is recommended.
Jim Gold International, Inc. is not responsible or liable for defaults of those not directly under the exclusive control of Jim Gold International, Inc.
All tickets and vouchers issued for transportation and services are subject to the terms and conditions under which such transportation and services are provided to the participant by the owners or contractors. The traveler assumes full responsibility for, and hereby releases Jim Gold International, Inc. from any duty of checking and verifying any and all passport, visa, vaccination or other entry requirements for each destination, and all safety and security conditions during the length of the proposed travel. Should any clause contained here in be determined void by any court of law, such a finding shall not affect the other clauses contained herein; each clause is a covenant which stand on its own. The receipt of your deposit and/or final payment will indicate that you have read these Terms and Conditions, and that you have agreed to them. Prices are subject to change.
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