Via Dinarica: Best of the South Hiking Tour in Montenegro, Kosovo and Albania

TOUR OVERVIEW

TRIP ITINERARY

SEPT 12TH GROUP TOUR

GETTING THERE

WHAT’S INCLUDED

BOOK NOW

PHOTOS

TRAVEL UPDATE to MONTENEGRO, KOSOVO AND ALBANIA 

Montenegro, Kosovo and Albania are open to international tourists. Get the most up-to-date details here from the  US Embassy in Montenegro, here for Kosovo and here for Albania.

BEST OF THE SOUTHERN VIA DINARICA HIKING TOUR OVERVIEW

The Via Dinarica is an epic trail of almost 2000 km long running through seven countries.

In 2014 Outside magazine named it the Best New Trail and in 2017 National Geographic Traveler‘s included it in their  “Best of the World” list of destinations and has said it’s poised to become one of the world’s top trekking destinations.

On our 10-day Best of the Southern Via Dinarica Tour, you’ll hike along the backbone of the Dinaric Alps in some of the most scenic sections in Albania, Montenegro and Kosovo. On many days you’ll reach elevations of over 2000 m.

You’ll be hiking on a connected network of old shepherd paths, previously used war routes, and both new and old trails.  The path leads you past imposing limestone karst formations, striking mountains, valleys where you’ll see shepherds tending their sheep, lush forests, and sparking Alpine lakes.

Located between Asia and Western Europe, the Balkans have had an often turbulent history. Today, politics have been replaced with cooperation to create one of the best multi-country treks on the planet in a sustainable way creating new opportunities for locals.

We offer this tour as private guided since many of the routes aren’t well marked. We also offer luggage transfer by horse and 4×4 to help make the challenging climbs easier. If you’re seeking a challenging trek and off-the-beaten-path adventure with stunning scenery, you’ll love the Via Dinarica. 

 

HIGHLIGHTS OF YOUR BEST OF THE SOUTHERN VIA DINARICA HIKING TOUR

✔ Trek an epic trail that National Geographic says is poised to become one of the world’s top trekking destinations.

✔ Hike some of the most scenic parts of the southern trail in Montenegro, Kosovo and Albania

✔ Experience three different cultures

✔ Enjoy traditional shepherd hospitality in guesthouses

✔ Experience this still off-the-beaten-track before it becomes better known and  a more popular hiking destination 

REVIEWS OF OUR VIA DINARICA TOUR

Review of Via Dinarica Hiking Tour

BEST OF THE SOUTHERN VIA DINARICA HIKING TOUR ITINERARY

Day 1: Arrive at Podgorica Airport – Vusanje Village (Montenegro)

Arrive at Podgorica Airport in Montenegro where we’ll pick you up and transfer you to the village of Vusanje (population 658) in preparation for our hike tomorrow. The transfer is ~ 2:30 hours. 

  • Meals included: Dinner
  • Accommodation: Guesthouse in Vusanje, Montenegro

Day 2: Hike from Vusanje – Bor Peak – Plav (Montenegro)

Today we’ll start hiking from the village of Vusanje to the town of Plav in Montenegro. Your guide will lead you through a path of blueberry fields where you’ll get amazing views of Zla Kolata, the highest mountain in Montenegro.

After a short break, we’ll start the climb to Bor Peak (2100 m). From this peak, you’ll get an expansive view of Gusinje Valley, Plav and a preview of the mountains in Kosovo and Albania where you’ll be hiking in the upcoming days. You’ll even get a view of Mount Gjeravica, the highest mountain of Kosovo.

From Bo Peak, we’ll take a trail through a forest of beech trees and then down through until we reach the city of Plav (population: 3717).

  • Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • Hiking Details: 12 km, Ascent: 1040 m, Descent: 500 m, Max Elevation: 2100 m 6 hours
  • Luggage transport: by car
  • Accommodation: Hotel in Plav, Montenegro

Day 3: Hike from Plav – Hrid Lake – Babino Polje, Montenegro

Today’s hike is one of the longest on our Via Dinarica Tour (~22 km).   But we’ll be sure to take time to relax or even go for a refreshing swim in the glacial lake of Hrid. Then we’ll continue on to the village of Babino Polje, passing through an old forest and small villages which are only inhabited in summer.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • Hiking Details: 22 km, Ascent: 1200 m, Descent: 600 m Max Elevation: 2100 m, 7.5 hours
  • Luggage transport:  by car
  • Overnight: Guesthouse, Babino Polje, Montenegro

Day 4: Hike from Babino Polje, Montenegro – Milisevac in Kosovo

We start our hike today from the guesthouse in Babino Polje, walk through the village following a gravel road. We’ll hike through the last villages of Montenegro before climbing up towards the border with Kosovo. From there we will go down to the alpine huts in Milisevac where we will spend the night.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • Hiking Details: 15 km, Ascent: 580 m, Descent: 303 m, Max Elevation: 2080 m, 7 hours
  • Overnight: Mountain Hut, Milisevac, Kosovo

Day 5: Hike from Milisevac – Beleg, Kosovo

From Milisevac we head to the alpine pastures of Beleg passing through the alpine village of Prilep. The trail up to Prilep huts is fairly easy and hiking a few sections abandoned gravel roads.

In Prilep, we’ll stop for a coffee break. This is another place, totally off the beaten track from other fellow travellers hiking the Via Dinarica Trail. After we’ve recharged in Prilep, we’ll head to Beleg huts where our hike ends.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • Hiking Details: 12.8 km, Ascent: 370 m, Descent: 100 m, Max Elevation: 2050 m, 7 hours
  • Luggage transport:  by 4×4
  • Overnight: Guesthouse in Beleg, Kosovo

Day 6: Hike from Beleg, Kosovo – Doberdol, Albania

Today we’ll hike along the border between Kosovo, Montenegro and Albania. A highlight to today’s hike is climbing to the meeting point of the three borders and enjoying the amazing panorama of all three countries. After we’ve revelled in the moment, and snapped photos we’ll descend to the alpine pastures of Doberdol. Here you’ll meet a local from the village and learn about the shepherds and their sheep – a century-old tradition in the area.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • Hiking Details: 10 km, Ascent: 350 m, Descent: 600 m, Max Elevation: 2300 m, 6 hours
  • Luggage transport:  by horse
  • Overnight: Mountain hut, Doberdol, Albania

Day 7: Hike from Doberdol – Çerem – Valbona, Albania

Today’s hike takes walk us further into Albania as we hike along the border with Montenegro.

Here we’ll have the chance to take a few photos of the old border stones that stand there as a reminiscence of the communist period, isolating Albania from the international community.

After hiking for ~ 5 hours we’ll reach the village of Çerem where your efforts will be rewarded with a nice lunch that we’ve organized.  Next, we’ll use local transportation to drive us to the village of Valbona known as one of the most beautiful places in Northern Albania.

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • Hiking Details: 14 km, Ascent: 350 m, Descent: 850 m, Max Elevation 2050 m,  5 hours
  • Luggage transport: by horse
  • Overnight: Hotel, Valbona, Albania

Day 8. Hike from Valbona – Theth, Albania

Today we’ll begin our hike through the riverbed, then follow the trail which goes through the village of Rragam and Valbona Springs. It will take us ~2-3 hours to reach either the summit or Valbona Pass (1815 m) depending on the ability of the group.

From there the panorama unveils both the Valbona and Theth Valleys. It’s absolutely breathtaking. Next, your efforts will be rewarded with a picnic lunch about 1 km from the pass.

At the place called “Krojnat”, we can treat ourselves to a Turkish coffee or refreshment. In the afternoon we’ll reach the village of Theth where we’ll spend the night. 

  • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • Hiking Details: 10 km, Ascent: 1050 m, Descent: 950 m, Max Elevation: 1800 m, 7 hours
  • Luggage transport: by horse
  • Overnight: Guesthouse, Theth, Albania

Day 9: Hike around Theth Village

Our hike today takes us to some of the best natural attractions of Theth village such as the Blue Eye, a natural pool of turquoise water fed from the Black River. If you’re feeling brave, cool of with a swim in the cold lake. 

On the way back we’ve arranged local 4×4 transportation to take us back to Theth. Next, after we’ve prepared our luggage, we’ll drive for ~ 3 hours to the city of Podgorica in Montenegro.

  • Meals: Breakfast and Lunch
  • Hiking Details: 14 km, Ascent: 150 m, Descent: 300 m, Max Elevation: 800 m, 7 hours
  • Overnight: Hotel, Podgorica, Montenegro

Day 10. Travel from Podgorica – Airport

You’ve done it! You’ve completed the Best of the Souther Via Dinaria Tour. You’ve got free time to explore Podgorica before heading to the airport.

  • Meals: Breakfast

SEPT 12TH – SEPT 21, 2021 GROUP TOUR

Excited to get out hiking again? Want to connect with some cool people (but too many people)  after a year that’s been isolating for many of us?

Me too! That’s why I’ve created this small-group hiking tour, the first for this new tour.  

Group size will be a maximum of 5 other people + me (Laurel, Founder of Monkeys and Mountains Adventure Travel) and our local guide.

The itinerary will be the same as what’s listed for the private guided tour. 

The price will be determined by the number of participants: 

  • €1699 per person if there are 2 people in the group (yourself + 1 other person)
  • €1399 per person if there are 3 people in the group
  • €1299 per person if there are 4-5 people in the group

As we’re assuming that it will sell out, we’re asking for a 30% deposit based on €1299 per person. 

Private accommodation is available for 5 nights of this tour (Day 1 – Vuthaj, Day 2 – Plave, Day 7 – Valbona, Day 8 – Theth and Day 9 – Podgorica). The cost is an additional €129 which you can book when you make your deposit. 

Book today, spaces are extremely limited – (one already sold before we even launched the tour) and will go quickly. 

Click on the button below and then go to the last calendar that says “Sept 12th, 2021 Via Dinarica: Small Group Guided Hiking”. Then Click on “available” and then advance until Sept 12th. Click on that date to book your spot. 

 



FAQs About This Group Tour

What will the weather be like at this time of year?
While weather in the mountains is always variable you can expect it to get down to around 7°C at night and up to 25-28°C during the day with occasional rain. Snow doesn’t usually come until November so isn’t a concern for this tour.

What are the accommodations like?
Accommodations are very simple and you should bring your own sleeping bag liner for the two nights in mountain huts. They provide blankets that you can put over your sleeping bag liner, or if you prefer, you can also bring your own sleeping bag. 

Can I have my own private room?
On some nights this will be possible but it’s not possible for 2 nights in the mountain huts. Contact us for further details as it depends on availability. 

 

GETTING TO PODGORICA IN MONTENEGRO

You’ll fly into/out from Podgorica (the capital city of Montenegro). From Washington DC the average flight time is just over 11 hours. We recommend using Skyscanner to find the best flights. 

INCLUSIONS TO BEST OF THE SOUTHERN VIA DINARICA HIKING TOUR

Payment Information

  • €1699 per person for 2 people (private guided) 
  • €1399 per person for 3 people (private guided)
  • €1299 per person for 4-5 people (private guided)
  • Contact us for rates of groups of 6+ people

30% is due when you book. Your remaining balance is due 35 days in advance.

WHAT’S INCLUDED 

✔ Accommodation for 9 nights (3 nights in hotels, 4 nights in guesthouses (some are in shared rooms) and 2 nights in a mountain hut with 3-10 beds in each room, depending on the hut). Accommodations are very simple as that’s all that’s available. 

✔ Transport and transfers

✔ Luggage transportation by horse and 4×4

✔ Local transport

✔ Private English speaking guide for 10 days

✔9 breakfasts, 8 lunches and 8 dinners  

✔ Border Crossing assistance from our local partner 

WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED

  • Meals not mentioned in the Inclusions
  • Travel insurance that covers you for this tour and includes pandemic, emergency evacuation and hospital care in the unlikely incident that you get injured. World Nomads insurance covers this which is why we recommend it
  • Anything not mentioned in the Inclusions

BOOK YOUR BEST OF THE SOUTHERN VIA DINARICA HIKING TOUR NOW

Thank you for your interest in booking this tour. You’ve made a good choice. Our Best of the southern via Dinarica hiking tour is absolutely stunning as you can hike and travel in three different countries.

Please contact us to book this tour. Let us know what date you’d like to start, how many people and we’ll start the booking process.



+ YOU’LL GET THE FOLLOWING BONUSES WHEN YOU BOOK:

✔ BONUS 1:Trekking Tips Online Course (value $97)

so that you get the most from your amazing trek

✔ BONUS 2: Hiking & Trekking Gear Online Course (value $47)

so that you bring everything you need and nothing you don’t

✔ BONUS 3: Soft Copy of our Hiking Logbook (value $9)

so that you can remember your incredible hiking trip in Crete.

TOTAL VALUE: $153 FREE as a thank you for your booking and to have an incredible vacation.


PHOTOS OF HIKING THE BEST OF THE VIA DINARICA IN MONTENEGRO, KOSOVO AND ALBANIA