Albania Holidays Travel and Advice

We advise you to exercise normal awareness in Albania just like you would do in your own country.
In fact, travelling in Albania is very safe if you follow common sense on your trip.

Police Officers in Albania are very polite. 
Police in Albania do not usually stop tourist’s cars but may stop cars that are rented locally.
When they see you are a foreign tourist, they will immediately tell them to proceed, usually with a " ec, ec, rruge te mbare"..... "carry on, have a good journey".
Albanians are a very hospitable people.
Greet them warmly and you can shake hands with any one on the street, but by and large avoid discussing religion and politics
Albanians have not yet developed the same broad understanding  of  homosexuality  as western European.However in the capital Tirane the people are more cosmopolitan and have a greater understanding and tolerance of the western way of thinking.

When offered a small drink from the locals please do accept it, as in Albanian culture to refuse a friendship drink can be taken as arrogance. Accept it and just say thank you.
Enjoy the local customs and respect the people as you would do back home.
Albanians have a very strong sense of self respect and do Not tend to beg or ask for money.
Albanian cuisine is excellent, with it's blend of Ottoman and Italian dishes.
There are lots of good restaurants throughout the holiday resorts, towns and cities around the country.
Vegetarians will particularly enjoy the catering as the vegetables grown in Albania are mostly organic, because they do not use artificial fertilisers or pesticides.
Albanian national drinks
-Albanian vineyards produce good quality home made wine from grapes found only in Albania. (Kallmet and Shesh).
-Raki is Albania's favorite drink, a clear spirit made from grapes.
-Coffee is another common drink, however in bars and restaurants a coffee usually means espresso or cappuccino.
-Turkish and Greek coffee is made in the traditional way, with the grounds and the sugar brewed together.
Specialties in Albania
Traditional dishes use plenty of vegetables.
Salads are on the menu at all times.
Mediterranean fresh fish dishes are available in the sea side resorts.
Albania Currency information
The Albanian currency is the lek (plural lekë).
The exchange rates in 2013 are about €1 = 140 lekë, £1 = 166 lekë,  US$1 = 103 lekë.
Banknotes denominations are 200, 500, 1000, 2000 and 5000 lekë and the coins are 5, 10, 20, 50 and 100 lekë.
Most businesses can quote prices in Lekë, Euros or American Dollars, depending on the currency you would like to pay.
ATMs, are readily available in every town/city, and do not charge a transactions fee. (if in doubt ask)
Foreign currency can be changed at a bank or at any exchange office in any town and also travellers' cheques can be cashed at most banks.

Spend your Albanian money before leaving the country as they can't be exchanged abroad.
NEVER change money with individuals on the street, but always use established foreign exchange offices, which you will find easily.
Be careful and protect your wallet/purse as pick-pockets are skilful just like anywhere else in the world.
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Albania Information

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