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Monday, June 27, 2016

Albania: Unspoilt Mediterranean beaches where a pint of beer costs less than a £1

TRAVEL to Europe’s little known gem, and uncover crowd free beaches, azure blue sea and very cheap beer.

woman in bikini walking on beach into blue sea
Albania is THE place to go for beautiful beaches and cheap beer
If you’re looking for something a little different to the typical ‘fly and flop’ holiday, then consider Albania, a true jewel in the crown of the Adriatic sea.
Nestled between Greece and sharing the same ocean as Venice, Albania has remained largely undiscovered by tourists for years, due in some part to a troubled Communist history.
However all of that has passed, and Albania remains an incredibly safe and peaceful country to visit, albeit far less visited than its more showy neighbours.
And with the price of a European holiday set to increase after Britain’s EU exit, this may be one of the last places you can enjoy a budget break this close to home.
blue green sea, lush green outskirts
The Albanian Riviera is THE place to relax
With natural beauty to rival any self respecting coastal region, Albania is the starlet of the Adriatic, so visiting the beautiful beach towns is an absolute must do. 
And don’t forget the Ionian coast, home to several better known islands, including Kefalonia and Corfu, as well as hugging the coast of stunning Sicily.
For those who do travel to the country, the picture-perfect beauty, scenic landscapes and abundance of UNESCO sites promise to enthral. 
And for those who relish the opportunity to enjoy cut-price craft beer, which can be bought for less than a pound, making Albania one of the cheapest places in Europe to enjoy an ice cold lager on the beach.
bridge at sunset over lake albania
Albania is home to UNESCO World Heritage Sites
Although the main draw, the beaches aren’t all that this undiscovered country has to offer, and venturing off the beaten track to some of the renowned UNESCO sites around the country will leave you awe-struck.
From the pretty stone city of Gjirokastra, to hilltop houses in Berat — the country is ripe for exploring the historic World Heritage Sites. 
And if you are keen for some big city living, the capital Tirana is a fun and vibrant city, home to cute coffee shops, stylish bars and colourful communist-era architecture to wow you.
If you’re worried the cosmopolitan city will break your budget, don’t be concerned, as the price of a three-course meal will set you back as little as £15. Perfect for those wanting to indulge in some epicurean delights. 
But for the vast majority, the ultimate goal is to enjoy the stunning beaches of the ‘Riviera’. Albania’s answer to the legendary French getaway, the riviera is the coastal area running along the Ionian sea, meeting the Adriatic with a splash.
Synonymous with white sand beaches free from crowds, and turquoise water tempting tourists to take a dip, the riviera conjures up a quintessential Mediterranean atmosphere.
While tourism is increasing year on year, all signs point to this hidden gem being uncovered soon.
Delicious food and wine at budget prices, deserted beaches to enjoy all to yourself — Albania is THE place to go before the secret’s out.