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Camping in Albanien: Ein Bild vom Koman Stausee.
Camping in Albanien: Ein Bild vom Koman Stausee.

Camping in Albania - Everything you need to know

Autorin Elinor
Article from Elinor

Albania is (still) a little camping insider tip within Europe. Here you can find out why Albania is a little dream, especially for wild camping fans, and what else there is to consider and see.


Albania is (still) a real insider tip among campers and travelers in general. How long it will stay that way is questionable as more and more outdoor enthusiasts are being drawn to this beautiful country in south-eastern Europe. So it's best to set off as soon as possible if you hope to have a good chance of exploring Albania's endless coastline, steep mountains and cities in peace and quiet, far away from other tourists.
Ein VW California Ocean Van von innen, während er zum Camping in Albanien gefahren wird.

The journey to Albania begins - travel options and traffic regulations

Travel by ferry

The journey from Germany to Albania isn't a short one - but it's definitely worth it! If you're traveling by camper, you can choose the water route and take the ferry from Italy to Albania. At the moment, you can travel overnight from Ancona or Bari to Durrës (there is also a second provider for the Bari-Durrës route), or you can choose the route from Brindisi to Valona. The travel time (if you can call it that for ships) is between 7 (Brindisi-Valona) and 16 hours (Ancona-Durrës), but this does not take into account delays, which can sometimes occur with ferries between Italy and Albania. You also have to be at the port up to 3 hours before your ferry departs - so you don't really save any time by taking the ferry, but it can still be a good option for anyone who wants to take a break from driving.

Overland Route

With a camper, it is of course a good idea to travel all the way overland. Fortunately, you have your bed with you on this rather long route and can take as many breaks as you like. From Munich, it takes around 17 hours through Austria, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Montenegro until you reach Albania.
Don't forget: On the way to Albania, you will drive on roads in Austria, Slovenia and Croatia where a toll is payable.

Special traffic regulations

Road conditions

Take care when driving in Albania: The road conditions are sometimes poor, and you may also come across unmarked or inadequately marked and/or secured roadworks on your road trip. According to the ADAC, increased caution is also required due to unlit vehicles or carts, deep potholes and unpaved verges.

Blood alcohol limit

The blood alcohol limit for driving is 0.1.

Speed limits

The speed limit for light motorhomes is 35 km/h in urban areas, 70 km/h outside urban areas and on expressways and 80 km/h on the highway.

Accidents

In the event of an accident that leaves your camper with severe bodywork damage, you may only leave the country with a damage certificate issued by the police.
Here, you can find out more about the traffic regulations in Albania.

What else you should pay attention to

Waste disposal unfortunately is a sensitive issue in Albania. To keep it short: Partly due to a lack of landfill sites, a large proportion of garbage in Albania ends up in the country's rivers - and ultimately in the sea. So try to produce as little waste as possible, and maybe you'll even manage to keep the waste in your camper until you're back in a non-Balkan country, as the other Balkan states have similar problems with waste disposal.
Ein CamperBoys Van steht am Ufer eines Sees.

Albanian currency

Good news for savers and those who want to become one - compared to other European countries, Albania is a rather inexpensive destination. You pay with the so-called lek, although you can also pay with the euro in some cases, although the prices are higher than the price in the national currency in this case. 1€ corresponds to approximately 120 lek.
Also good to know: In Albania, you should always carry some cash with you, as card payments are often not accepted. Albania also has a special feature when it comes to cash cards, as many places do not accept debit cards. It is therefore best to always travel to Albania with a credit card. However, if you don't have a credit card, it's best to check with your bank to see what the situation is with the card you already own.

Wild camping in Albania

Good news for determined campsite avoiders, because wild camping and free standing with a camper is actually officially permitted in Albania, with a few restrictions. As long as you always ask about national parks or nature reserves and private land or enquire with official bodies, you can relax and find a nice spot that you have all to yourself. Also avoid standing in places where you could disturb local residents.
You can find some support in your search for nice parking spaces with apps like park4night, otherwise it's best to rely on your eyes and your gut feeling.
Beim Camping in Albanien liegen zwei Mädchen im geparkten Camper, die Heckklappe ist geöffnet und man sieht ein Feld.

Safety during your trip to Albania

Motorhome break-ins

You should be a little bit careful, especially during high season and particularly on the beaches of Albania, as motorhomes have often been broken into and stolen here in recent years. So take good care of your documents and wallet and make copies before your trip.

Pickpocketing

Pickpocketing can occur, especially in large crowds. The best thing to do before your trip is to get a neck pouch that you can wear close to your body, even under your clothes, and avoid carrying more valuables than absolutely necessary.

Earthquake

Earthquakes can occur in Albania. Keep up to date and familiarize yourself with the conduct recommendations for earthquakes.

Vaccinations

The hepatitis A vaccination is recommended as a travel vaccination, as well as a TBE, rabies and hepatitis B vaccinations if necessary.
Even if it is difficult: avoid contact with (stray) animals, mainly dogs and cats. There is a risk of rabies transmission here. To be on the safe side, you can be vaccinated against rabies as a precaution before you set off on your trip. This is a series of several vaccinations, so plan in enough time to ensure that you are fully vaccinated when you enter Albania.
Find out in detail about health risks and travel vaccination recommendations from the Federal Foreign Office and the RKI, if you are planning a trip to Albania. On the RKI website you will also find contact points for travel medical advice in your location.

Wildlife

Albania's national parks and forests are home to wild animals such as bears, wild boars, lynxes, wolves and snakes.
You can find even more travel and safety tips on the website of the Federal Foreign Office.

The most beautiful destinations and campsites in Albania

Let's move on to a nicer topic than traffic regulations and safety. Albania has quite a lot to offer in terms of scenery.

Camping right by the sea

Albania's coastline along the Adriatic and the Ionian Sea is an impressive 360 kilometres long. So if you prefer to spend your camping vacation near the sea, Albania is the place for you. Our recommendations for campsites in Albania by the sea:

Ksamil Caravan Camping

The location of a campsite could hardly be more beautiful: The campsite Ksamil Caravan Camping is located on an elongated peninsula between Lake Butrin and the open sea, about 200 metres from the coast. The campsite is open all year round and is not only close to the beach but also to restaurants, bars and stores, which are within easy walking distance. Otherwise, the basic campsite amenities make your life easier: Wifi, washing machines, sanitary facilities, electricity and also an emptying facility for your camping toilet.
PS: According to Google reviews, you can also look forward to a delicious iced coffee to welcome you in summer ;)

Camping Himara

Also located in the south of Albania, 65 metres above sea level, the Himara campsite awaits you. The small campsite, situated between olive trees, not only offers you a beautiful view of the sea, it is also only around 300 metres from the shore. The campsite itself has a bar and restaurant, Wi-Fi, washing machines, electricity and sanitary facilities.
There are also interesting/beautiful excursion destinations in the vicinity of the campsite: for example, Himara Castle and various beach and coastal areas such as Aquarius Beach or Gjipe Beach.
Drohnenaufnahme von einer steinigen Meeresküste.

Camping in the Albanian Alps

In the north of the country you will find the Albanian Alps (Prokletije), which may be of particular interest to hikers. Watch out: The roads here in particular can be a little difficult. If you still want to take the plunge, we recommend caution and the following campsite in the mountains:
At the campsite of the Bee Eco Gasthaus you can make yourself comfortable in the midst of the mountainous landscape of the Albanian Alps. It's not just the view of the mountains around the Valbona Valley that makes this campsite so special, it's also a good starting point for hiking tours in the surrounding area. The Rragam waterfall, the Valbona Valley National Park with all its highlights or the hiking trail from Valbona to Theth are perfect activities/excursion destinations for all outdoor and sports fans.
Ein Grand California Van steht beim Camping in Albanien geparkt vor einer Bergkulisse, ein Mann öffnet hinten die Heckklappe.

Camping Ohridsee

Lake Ohrid, the second largest lake on the Balkan Peninsula, is located partly in Albania and partly in North Macedonia and is one of the oldest lakes in the world. Although the much larger part of the lake is on the North Macedonian side, the Albanian shore is also a worthwhile destination: the Pogradec nature reserve is a great place for hiking and those who prefer a more relaxed approach can also book a boat tour across the lake or make themselves comfortable on the beaches of the pretty villages of Pogradec or Tushemisht. And here you can camp right by the water:

Camping ARBI

The ARBI campsite is located near the border with North Macedonia directly on the lakeshore. Here you will find sanitary facilities as well as a barbecue area and can relax in the immediate vicinity of the water. It is also possible to discharge grey water and empty chemical toilets here. You can easily reach the nearest village on foot, but there is also a restaurant right on site for spontaneous cravings.

Camping Herges

The Herges campsite is located further away from the border on the western shore of the lake. Here, you can look forward to good food, good views of the lake and green pitches as well.

Camping near Llogara National Park

If you head towards Llogara National Park (Parku Kombëtar i Llogarasë), you can enjoy both, the mountains and the sea breeze. The national park is located in the middle of the Ceraunian Mountains, a coastal mountain range in the south of the country - so you are in the mountains and on the coast of the Ionian Sea at the same time. Near the national park there is once this campsite/pitch, but you are sure to find another nice place to camp if you happen to be in the area, otherwise the Himara campsite (see `Camping Albania by the sea` above) is not too far from the park.
Ein Mann fährt einen Van beim Camping in Albanien und blickt durch das Fenster auf eine bewaldete Bergkulisse.

Camping at the Koman reservoir

The Koman reservoir in northern Albania is a particularly beautiful destination for a trip or excursion (even if the roads there can be a little difficult to navigate). For the lake, we head back into the Albanian Alps, to the river Drin. This is dammed up in Lake Komani. The result is a reservoir in a gorge that can be reached by ferry (great tip!) and is very impressive due to the steep rock faces all around. There are not many campsites here either, so camping enthusiasts may have to make do with free standing.
Der Kolman-Stausee. Beim Camping in Albanien ein echtes Highlight.

Camping near Berat

Berat should definitely be on the list for anyone who doesn't want to miss out on a city tour during their trip. The city is known for its Ottoman architecture, winding alleyways and generally for being one of the most beautiful cities in Albania. So let's get there!

River Side Camping

The River Side campsite in Berat offers its visitors all the most important campsite amenities: Wifi, washing machines, sanitary facilities, electricity and also the option of emptying gray water and camping toilets. There is also a garden where you can spend some relaxing hours.

`The Castle of Berat` Campsite

This campsite, which is a little further away from the city, also has everything you need in terms of campsite facilities. Perfect for anyone who appreciates a quiet location and home-cooked food and doesn't mind a little distance from the city.
Die Stadt Berat in Albanien.

Let's go!

We hope our travel tips have helped you a little and that you might soon be able to add Albania to your list of countries to visit. There are so many things worth seeing throughout the country, and on your trip you are sure to discover one or two spots that few tourists know about. We wish you lots of fun and a good trip!

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