Vjosa River Ride – the Last Wild River of Europe

5.0 (6)
12 days 11 nights
Albania
Difficulty
Moderate
Comfort
Basic+
Weight limit
90 kg / 198 lb

This thrilling trail provides an enchanting equestrian experience across a variety of landscapes, offering numerous opportunities for activities like swimming, hiking along rivers, exploring canyons, camping, and immersing yourself in local culture. Along the journey, you'll have the opportunity to explore unique cultural landmarks and see the Albania’s communist era heritage.

Enjoy the local traditional cuisine, try famous Permeti Raki and wine, witness traditional rituals, and even explore city nightlife, making this trail an extremely diverse and enriching adventure.

The main point of this trail is the magnificent Vjosa River, renowned as the last wild river in Europe. Riding alongside its unrestricted waters and camping in the riverbed provides a truly breathtaking experience. 

from US$ 1 893
per tourist for 12 days
Departing from
Tirana
Available dates
Date of travel
Number of individuals
Only in the Horse Tours Club
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Photo Kristina F.
Kristina F. is the provider of this trip
The provider speaks: English
I was born in Albania and now am a journalist with a unique background in history and archaeology. My deep affinity for horses goes beyond a mere interest, it is a lifelong passion that has become a driving force in my endeavors. Recognizing the potential of Albania`s cultural and natural treasures, I have committed myself to building some of the finest horse holidays in the country. My vision extends beyond tourism, emphasizing the importance of partnerships with horses, the preservation of nature, and support for local communities. I believe a horse represents more than a companion on the trails it symbolizes a partnership rooted in mutual respect and understanding. I stand at the intersection of passion, profession, and purpose, weaving together a narrative that celebrates the rich tapestry of Albania`s history, culture, and natural beauty while championing the symbiotic relationship between humans and horses. My story is one of dedication to sustainable practices, community empowerment, and the enduring connection between people, horses, and the environment.

Tour highlights

See "The Blue Heart" of Europe
The Vjosa, also known as "the blue heart" of Europe - the last wild river in the area
Experience Diverse Landscapes
Stunning canyons, braided river sections, islands, oxbows, and meandering stretches
Immerse Yourself in Local Culture
Visit historical monuments, try authentic cuisine, see the local nightlife

Route details

Day 1
Arrival

Arrive at Tirana airport ideally in the morning, but no later than 14.30. This allows time for the transfer and an opportunity to explore the town of Gjirokstra. The drive to Gjirokastra takes approximately 3 hours. 

Settle into your hotel, which is conveniently located just a 10-minute walk from the historic center of Gjirokstra. Before dinner, take a stroll around the historical town, including the old Bazaar, and visit notable attractions such as Enver Hoxha’s house, Gjirokastra castle, the church of the Old Bazaar, and Skenduli house, offering insights into traditional Gjirokastra life.

Enjoy a traditional dinner at a local restaurant, where your guides will provide information about the trail, address any inquiries, offer advice, and share useful details. We recommend purchasing a map of the area before dinner to familiarize yourself with the itinerary.

Day 2
Ride towards the village of Karjan
Day 3
Drino’s Valley
Day 4
Towards the Nderan village
Day 5
Gjurmemushka mountain ride
Day 6
Along the river bank
Day 7
Non riding activities
Day 8
Climbing Dhembel Mountain
Day 9
Ride to the heart of the Pogon region
Day 10
Ride to Libohova
Day 11
Antigonea National Park
Day 12
Departure
Difficulty
Moderate
Tour provider's comments

Horse riding is a risk sport and activity and it can be dangerous. We train our horses to be friendly, confident and with a good understanding about their environment, but they are given to the rider with the understanding to ride at own risk.

horse

Accommodation

Comfort
Basic+
Guest House
9 nights
Hotel
2 nights
9 nights
Village House
2 nights
Hotel

Tickets to group meeting place

Group meeting place
Tirana
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Weather during the tour

Weather conditions along the route
You will get a weather forecast for this tour’s route based on
  • the forecasts for this season
  • the statistics from previous years’ trips
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Tour conditions

Included

  • all accommodations and meals from dinner of day 1 till breakfast of day 12;
  • English speaking guide (second guide if there are more than 4 riders);
  • water and drinks during the meals;
  • luggage transport by car from destination to destination.

Extras

  • flights;
  • entrance tickets to monuments or parks;
  • lunch on day 1;
  • extra drinks;
  • other services or expenses during free time;
  • transfer from/to the airport;
  • the small group supplement (183 Euros/person). This is applicable if only 3 riders are booked onto the ride. If, at the time of departure, more than 3 riders are booked, the small group supplement will be refunded. 

Group size

up to 10 tourists

Duration

12 days
11 nights

It's important to know

Personal equipment you need for the tour

Attire:

Riding hat
Long-sleeved shirts (avoid expensive or favorite clothing)
Riding trousers and chaps
Gloves

Footwear:

Good mountain shoes with a grip (not too thick)
Avoid smooth-soled riding boots

Outerwear:

Waterproof raincoat

Swimming Clothes:

Swimwear

Evening attire:

Casual clothes

Protection:

Sun cream
Sunglasses
Hat

Medical supplies:

Anti-allergy medicine for insect bites

Essentials:

Torch (flashlight) for walking to feed the horses in the evening

Photography:

Small camera (avoid large professional cameras)

Identification:

Copy of passport

Saddlebags:

Personal saddlebags welcome (provided by riders)
Small saddlebags provided by the ride for food and water.

In addition to the other items, including a torch (flashlight) is recommended for walking to the horses to feed them in the evening. This will provide better visibility and ensure your safety during this activity.

May I assist the riding center somehow?
Cancellation of booking

Tour reviews

5.0
Based on 6 reviews
  • M
    Malaren
    24 Mar, 2024
    about provider
    Awesome provide
    24 Mar, 2024
  • B
    Bernadette
    17 Nov, 2023
    about provider
    My 14-year-old daughter and I embarked on the one-week Zagoria trail in November. It was a week filled with joy as we cherished every minute, thanks to the breathtaking views, reliable and sturdy horses, delightful cuisine, and hospitable families we stayed with. Most importantly, I truly valued the friendly approach towards the youngest rider in our group, my daughter. Thanks to the Caravan Horse Riding Albania team's kindness and professionalism, it became an unforgettable experience.
    17 Nov, 2023
  • A
    Astriflette
    27 Jun, 2023
    about provider
    There are no words sufficient to express how truly amazing this trail was! It held great significance for me to embark on this journey solo. Filled with warmth, sharing (and raki), it provided the perfect avenue to explore Albania and its people. Thank you, Kristina, for being such an inspiring woman. Your attention to detail and care resonates deeply with me and will stay with me always. Your team's exceptional work extends beyond just horses; it encompasses the rich culture of your country and its people. Many thanks for sharing that with us. (They even surprised me with a birthday cake 🤩🤩) I returned home with countless memories and newfound friends. FALEMINDERIT!
    27 Jun, 2023

Dates and Prices

  • from US$ 1 893
    5 – 16 Oct 12 days 11 nights
    Book

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