Two roads diverged in a wood and I - I took the one less traveled by.
— Robert Frost, 1874 - 1963
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Albania

Background

Albania

Albania declared its independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1912, but was conquered by Italy in 1939. Communist partisans took over the country in 1944. Albania allied itself first with the USSR (until 1960), and then with China (to 1978). In the early 1990s, Albania ended 46 years of xenophobic Communist rule and established a multiparty democracy. The transition has proven challenging as successive governments have tried to deal with high unemployment, widespread corruption, a dilapidated physical infrastructure, powerful organized crime networks, and combative political opponents. Albania has made progress in its democratic development since first holding multiparty elections in 1991, but deficiencies remain. International observers judged elections to be largely free and fair since the restoration of political stability following the collapse of pyramid schemes in 1997; however, there have been claims of electoral fraud in every one of Albania's post-communist elections. In the 2005 general elections, the Democratic Party and its allies won a decisive victory on pledges to reduce crime and corruption, promote economic growth, and decrease the size of government. The election, and particularly the orderly transition of power, was considered an important step forward. Albania joined NATO in April 2009 and is a potential candidate for EU accession. Although Albania's economy continues to grow, the country is still one of the poorest in Europe, hampered by a large informal economy and an inadequate energy and transportation infrastructure.

About

Albania (Albanian: Shqipëria) is a small country in the Balkans. It shares borders with Greece, the Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo, and Montenegro.

Read more about Albania in our Albania travel guide »

Featured journals from

Albania

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Andorra, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Gibraltar, Greece, Italy, Kosovo, Macedonia, Malta, Montenegro, Portugal, San Marino, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, Vatican City

Featured hotels in

Albania

AlbaniaSheraton Tirana Hotel 

Sheshi Italia
P.o. Box 1717
Tirana
Albania

Price (US$): $200 - $294 / night

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Location. Sheraton Tirana Hotel is a business friendly Tirana hotel connected to a shopping center and close to Qemal Stafa Stadium, Palace of Congress, and University of Tirana. Additional points of interest include Pyramid and Selman Stermasi Stadium. Hotel Features. Sheraton Tirana Hotel's restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. A poolside bar and a bar/lounge are open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. The hotel serves buffet breakfasts (surcharges apply).… more »

AlbaniaTirana International Hotel 

City Center, Skenderbej Square 8
Tirana 1001
Albania

Price (US$): $92 - $252 / night

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Location. Located in central Tirana, Tirana International Hotel is a business friendly hotel steps from Et'Hem Bey Mosque and Skanderbeg Square. Additional points of interest include Palace of Culture and National Museum of History. Hotel Features. Tirana International Hotel features a coffee shop/cafĂ©. Room service is available during limited hours. The hotel serves a complimentary breakfast in the restaurant. Recreational amenities include an indoor pool, a sauna, and a fitness facility.… more »

AlbaniaBEST WESTERN NOV HOTEL 

Gjin Bue Shpata Road
Tirana 1001
Albania

Price (US$): $109 - $175 / night

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Hotel Year Built 2008 Year Remodeled 2011 Additional Property Description A warm and friendly welcome awaits you at Best Western where you can have and enjoyable and memorable stay. Situated near the center of Tirana, close to the Selman Stermasi Stadium, it is the ideal choice for whoever travels to Tirana either for business or leisure. The BEST WESTERN Nov Hotel welcomes you in an elegant and charming environment. Quality, standards of service and hospitality are offered at a reasonable… more »

AlbaniaCity Hotel Tirana 

Rruga Ismail Qemali, Nr.8/1
Tirana 1001
Albania

Price (US$): $64 - $72 / night

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Location. City Hotel Tirana is located in central Tirana, close to Pyramid, Qemal Stafa Stadium, and Palace of Congress. Nearby points of interest also include University of Tirana and National Art Gallery. Hotel Features. This 3 star property has a business center and offers a meeting/conference room, audiovisual equipment, and business services. Complimentary wireless Internet access is available in public areas. For a surcharge, the property offers a roundtrip airport shuttle (available… more »

AlbaniaRogner Hotel Tirana 

BULEVARDI DESHMORET E KOMBIT
Tirana
Albania

Price (US$): $222 - $383 / night

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City Hotel amidst of greenery. Business hotel and garden hotel at the same time. Rogner Hotel Tirana embedded in a magnificent Mediterranean garden an oasis of relaxation and rest in the heart of Albanias capital. The location on the main boulevard makes the Rogner Hotel Tirana the meeting place of economy diplomacy culture and Albanian lifestyle. The Parliament Presidents Office Prime Ministers Office and many important Embassies are in walking distance.Whether in elegant premises or under… more »

Browse more hotels in Albania »

Albania

Full name
Republic of Albania
Capital
Tirana
Location

Southeastern Europe, bordering the Adriatic Sea and Ionian Sea, between Greece in the south and Montenegro and Kosovo to the north

Geographic coordinates

41 00 N, 20 00 E

Area comparative

slightly smaller than Maryland

Border countries

Greece 282 km, Macedonia 151 km, Montenegro 172 km, Kosovo 112 km

Coastline

362 km

Climate

mild temperate; cool, cloudy, wet winters; hot, clear, dry summers; interior is cooler and wetter

Terrain

mostly mountains and hills; small plains along coast

Lowest point

Adriatic Sea 0 m

Highest point

Maja e Korabit (Golem Korab) 2,764 m

Natural resources

petroleum, natural gas, coal, bauxite, chromite, copper, iron ore, nickel, salt, timber, hydropower

Population

2,986,952 (July 2010 est.)

Ethnic groups

Albanian 95%, Greek 3%, other 2% (Vlach, Roma (Gypsy), Serb, Macedonian, Bulgarian) (1989 est.)

Religions

Muslim 70%, Albanian Orthodox 20%, Roman Catholic 10%

Languages

Albanian (official - derived from Tosk dialect), Greek, Vlach, Romani, Slavic dialects

Government type

republic

Independence

28 November 1912 (from the Ottoman Empire)

National holiday

Independence Day, 28 November (1912)

Chief of state

President of the Republic Bamir TOPI (since 24 July 2007)

Head of government

Prime Minister Sali BERISHA (since 10 September 2005)

Internet country code

.al

Internet users

1.3 million (2009)

Airports

5 (2010)

Ports and terminals

Durres, Sarande, Shengjin, Vlore

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