Earth > Europe > Southern Europe > Balkans > Albania > Tirana
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North towards Shkodër and Montenegro and Kosovo
Get to the square 'Zogu i Zi' and then follow the street 'Rruga Dritan Hoxha' for 100 metres. There will be a bus line emerging on the right where a bus to Kamez runs. It will have Kamez written on it, and probably a number it takes roughly 20-25 minutes. You pay for the ticket in the bus, but not to the driver - there will be a ticket vendor walking around the bus who can sell you one. Get off at the last stop, from where you can walk 20 metres forward to a roundabout. You can hitchhike directly after it.
West towards Durrës (over Vorë)
Walk along the "Durrës road" (Rruga Durrësit) until you find a suitable spot. A good spot is past a roundabout (about 15 minutes' walk) where you can board minibuses to Durrës. There is an extra line for buses. Keep in mind that the further you walk, the faster will the cars drive.
There is a bus going to Cityy Park shopping center but it also stops to Megatec mall which is where you must drop off. if you forget and drop off at city park walk back to the underpass to go to the right direction toward Durres. In Albania cars stop to the highway, but better if you find a suitable spot because it is too dangerous and only minivans and taxis, which ask for money, will stop. If you get off on the Megatec mall, you can walk back to the highway where there's a Gulf gas station nearby
South towards Vlorë
The main road south goes from Durrës, so use the advice above. Have a look at the map so you know approximately where you want to get out. Let your driver know that you really don't want to go into the city, but would like to get dropped somewhere outside, on the road leading south. There is a bridge in the southern part of the city with a roundabout, at "Plepat". Get out there.
If you want to go to Vlore without taking again public transport from Durres than is better if you go through the old road and not through the highway going to Durres: From the city center take a bus going to Sharrë which will bring you to the end of the city. The last stop is already a good spot for hitchhiking, but you can even walk further if you want, cars can stop everywhere. From there can find cars going to Durres which will drop you to a roundabout where all cars going further south will pass.
East towards North Macedonia
Get to East Gate Tirana (TEG) enormous shopping mall (the biggest in Albania). There was a new very big roundabout next to it. It seemed like a very good spot to start hitchhiking as it is at the outskirts of the city. One could try asking people in Tirana or at the tourist information for a bus to this mall.
Opposite to the Clocktower (albanian: Kulla e Sahatit) there is a bus stop from where a bus to Tirana East Gate leaves every 20 minutes, from 9.00 to 21.00
Entering the city from the west, on Rruga Durresit (coming from Durrës, or from the north) could be slightly tiresome if you get dropped early on. The road through the suburbs could become rather long, and it's dense with very busy traffic. Catching a ride to the center could be difficult (but is certainly possible, though a lot of taxis will stop for you), and you might be better off just walking or taking a very cheap city bus (40 lek - 30 cents). But on the other hand, it's not unlikely that your ride takes you straight to the center, or wherever you are going.
Places to Visit
Tirana has a lot to offer for a person that decides to stay. The Lake is probably the best place to pass the day and to sleep by night. It has big park where people go to walk and run and there isn't a lot of noise. Dajti mountain is an attraction. You could walk for a daily trip or take the Linza bus and then the cable-car (400lek each way) that brings you to the mountain. The Blloku area is a touristic trap with a lot of modern bars to go and reduce your travel budget. There is a bazaar with cheap clothes in Kombinati open daily till 4pm.
Places to Avoid
Accommodation and Sleep
In Tirana one can easily get accommodated in so called private sector: these are people who have their apartments arranged to accepts occasional tourists. It is safe, quite cheap (you can talk about how much you can pay), you get friendly company (if needed) and tips how and where. To find these kind of places just ask some more tidily looking folks on the street, or in Internet cafes and other similar places.
Tirana Backpacker Hostel on Rruga Myslim Shyrit (near the highway towards Elbasan), "Villa 7" in a back alley, behind the Alpet petrol station has free wifi and may allow you to pitch your tent in the garden for less than the normal price of a bed. Trip'n'Hostel is a very reccommended hostel with a hitchhiking spirit.
There's a lovely park area to the south of the city center, about 25 minutes' walk. It would certainly be possible to find a spot to sleep there. Also, in the suburbs of the city there are a lot of unfinished buildngs you can enter and sleep for the night.
Other Useful Info
In Tirana (and probably in other cities, too) you can find very cheap local food markets with really good and fresh vegetables, such as tomatoes, cucumbers, green peppers, olives, etc. Local olive oil and freshly baked bread is something everyone has to taste! Ask for a "Gjelltore" and eat cheap and good. Dishes start from less than 1 euro each and it's the places students usually