Lively, colourful Tirana is the beating heart of Albania, where this tiny nation's hopes and dreams coalesce into a vibrant whirl of traffic, brash consumerism and unfettered fun. Having undergone a transformation of extraordinary proportions since it awoke from its communist slumber in the early 1990s, Tirana is now unrecognisable, with its buildings painted in horizontal primary colours, and public squares and pedestrianised streets a pleasure to wander.
Trendy Blloku buzzes with well-dressed nouvelle bourgeoisie hanging out in bars or zipping between boutiques, while the city's grand boulevards are lined with fascinating relics of its Ottoman, Italian and communist past – from delicate minarets to loud socialist murals. Tirana's traffic does daily battle with both itself and pedestrians in a constant scene of unmitigated chaos. Loud, crazy, colourful and dusty – Tirana is never dull.
Tirana destination guides
Adriatic Adventure—Dubrovnik to Athens
You could see Europe the same as everyone else, or you could live it like you mean it. With magnificent Dubrovnik as a launching pad, you’ll head south through Montenegro and undiscovered Albania, hit Corfu and its fabulous beaches en route to a history fix in ancient Athens. Along the way, you’ll climb the lanes of walled towns and get down in exclusive clubs.
Adriatic Adventure - Zagreb to Athens
From cultural Zagreb to ancient Athens and historic walled Balkan towns to the dance floors of exclusive nightclubs, this 15-day adventure promises a Europe you didn’t know was there.