If you are wondering what the best time of year is to visit Albania, we may or may not make it easier for you to decide. Every time of year is the best time to visit Albania. The country offers visitors interesting things to do every month of the year and temperatures vary from one region to the next. While spring and summer are the best seasons for those who want to play in the water or visit archaeological landmarks, autumn and winter are perfect for skiing and exploring museums. Here’s what to expect throughout the year in Albania.
January is a laid-back time to visit Albania and its capital, Tirana. The first week of the month is a public holiday and tourists are few; if you don’t like crowds, this is a good reason to consider visiting. Tirana is where the most important celebrations for New Year’s Eve take place, so if you love fireworks, music and concerts, keep it in mind. A unique way to celebrate this special holiday is to greet the new year on Mother Teresa Square among thousands of Albanians.
Rainfall in Tirana: 10 days
Temperature in Tirana: 43.7°F (6.5°C)
For gorgeous winter scenery, forget the capital city and go to Korça, one of the country’s most important towns and the main ski destination in Albania. Locals often spend their winter holidays in this charming region near the Greek and Macedonian border, where there are plenty of opportunities to ski, ice skate, hike and generally enjoy winter outdoor activities.
The historical city center of Korça, with its lovely café-culture, deserves a visit too. So after a cold day in the surrounding mountains, come back into town and relax by sipping a hot coffee in one of the cafés at Pazari I Vjëter.
Rainfall in Korça: 8 days
Temperature in Korça: 35.6°F (2°C)
The first month of spring is one of the best times of the year to visit Albania. Why? The weather is great with lovely sunny days, tourists haven’t arrived yet, and March 14 is Dita e Verës, one of the most important pagan festivals celebrated in the country. The best place to take part in this beautiful holiday is Elbasan, a town located just an hour (by car) from Tirana. During the day, people of all ages celebrate the first day of spring by dancing, taking part in parades and eating ballokume, a tasty cookie made with butter, sugar, corn flour and egg yolks.
Rainfall in Elbasan: 11 days
Temperature in Elbasan: 46.4°F (8°C)
For history enthusiasts there is no better place to go in Albania than the spectacular Butrint Archaeological Park. It is the country’s main historical site, and it is totally worth a look, not just for its incomparable beauty and importance, but also for its location: Butrint is located behind Ksamil Beach. It is surrounded by nature and the Vivari channel. April is the best time to visit this park when the weather is good, tourists are few and nature is in bloom.
Rainfall in Butrint: 10 days
Temperature in Butrint: 53.6°F (12°C)
May is a lovely time to come to Albania: the days are generally sunny, the weather is mild, and the crowds are still small. This is a great time in particular to visit Berat, one of the most beautiful towns in the country. Declared by UNESCO as a world heritage site because of its beauty and uniqueness, Berat is a must-see destination for travellers. Prepare to walk between the two main districts of the town, Mangalem and Gorica, and explore the castle strategically located on the top of a hill. Prepare for gorgeous views over the city.
Rainfall in Berat: 9 days
Temperature in Berat: 60.8°F (16°C)
The best time of year to visit and explore the Albanian Riviera (maybe the most spectacular area of the country) is June. Unlike its neighbors on the Adriatic Sea, like Croatia and Montenegro, Albania does not see a mass influx of tourists at this time, so you can consider it one of the best summer destinations in the Mediterranean. Beaches are gorgeous, waters are pristine, prices are lower, views are breathtaking, and you aren’t surrounded by tourists: sounds pretty ideal, right?
Rainfall in the Albanian Riviera: 4 days
Temperature in the Albanian Riviera: 73.4°F (23°C)
Albanians love July. First of all, the weather is great (even if some days are very warm). Second, the country hosts one of the coolest festivals in July: Fustanella Festival. It is held in the charming town of Gjirokaster known for its stunning Ottoman-houses, and it was the birthplace of the former dictator Enver Hoxha. The festival takes place in mid-July, so keep it in mind if you are planning a trip to Albania.
Rainfall in Gjirokaster: 4 days
Temperature in Gjirokaster: 77°F (25°C)
In August there is only one thing to do: avoid the beaches of the Riviera and head into the mountains. The weather in the mountains is pleasant, the nature is stunning and the things to do are many. Prepare to fall in love with this secret and wild area of Albania. Visit mountain hamlets, discover natural waterfalls, admire fabulous panoramas and even attend Za Fest, a music festival that brings together some of the country’s best songwriters.
Rainfall in Theth: 3 days
Temperature in Theth: 73.4°F (23°C)
September is another great month to spend some time relaxing at the beach. One of the best places to go is Vlora, the third largest Albanian city, two hours by car from Tirana. Go to the port and book a ticket for Karaburun, an untouched former military peninsula that was opened to the public only four yours ago. The boat departs every morning at 9:00 a.m. and takes visitors to the stunning peninsula, where they can swim, relax and eat excellent seafood.
Rainfall in Vlora: 5 days
Temperature in Vlora: 69.8°F (21°C)
When autumn comes to Albania, the country turns a golden color. This is the best time of the year to visit Permet, a hamlet located in the south of the country, home to natural hot springs. The main pool is situated in a stunning location near an old Ottoman bridge and is surrounded by nature. If relaxation is what you need, come here for a weekend.
Rainfall in Permet: 7 days
Temperature in Permet: 60.8°F (16°C)
November is not the best month for outdoor activities as the weather becomes unpleasant and wet, but visitors rarely feel discouraged because museums and art galleries are just as entertaining. November is the perfect time to get fully immersed in art and culture, so plan your visits around the most important museums of Tirana, such as BunkArt, BunkArt2, the National History Museum, the National Art Gallery, and more.
There is also a very special date for Albanians this month: November 28th is the country’s Independence Day from the Ottoman Empire. Naturally, in the capital city there are big celebrations, concerts and fun events that highlight this day.
Rainfall in Tirana: 12 days
Temperature in Tirana: 53.6°F (12°C)
December is the month of holidays. Albanians celebrate both Christmas and New Year’s Eve. The best place to spend time in Albania during the holidays is Tirana; more specifically, Skanderbeg Square, which is beautifully adorned with lights and decorations. A big Christmas tree, a carousel and a winter market invite visitors to enjoy the most magical month of the year.
Rainfall in Tirana: 12 days
Temperature in Tirana: 46.4°F (8°C)
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When not to go to Albania
There isn’t a time of year when it isn’t pleasant to visit Albania. Generally speaking, Albania gives its best in spring and summer, so the period from November to February is not frequented by many travellers. Whatever you enjoy doing most, there is a time and a place in Albania that will fill you with joy and unforgettable memories.