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We have a rental car and will be leaving Sveti Stefan on 21 May for a 7 days in Albania. We love beaches, historic sites and food. I've been trying to work out the best place to base ourselves along the coast. When travelling, we prefer to stay in the one place for a minimum 5 days and then just do day trips. We fly from Tirana on the morning of 28th May to Athens so, will have to spend at least one night in Tirana.
I really am struggling to find somewhere as a good base that is scenic and not too touristy. If worst comes to worst, we would be happy to stay say, 5 days in the one spot, with the last two nights in Tirana.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated
you could use Shkoder as a base for 3 nights and do daily tours, with or without a car. There are a lot of interesting places to see around Shkoder, lake shkoder, komani lake, Theth, Valbona, Kelmendi valley, and you can also stop at the beach. A second base could be Durres for daily tours in Berat, and the central albanian cost.
If you want to cover all Albania, then you have to move every night and be ably to reach the south till Saranda.
To give you an idea about timing from Shkoder to Saranda by car will take you up to 8 hours driving!
All the best!
Trust me, staying in one place while in Albania will make you miss a lot of things because we sure have many amazing places you could have visited instead. But if you still wish to base in a place, I will advise you use Shkodra and take a tour around Koma lake, Theth, Shengiin beaches and see the national park at Vermosh. You can then go ahead to spend some time in Kruja, Berta, and Lalezi beach.
You can use Shkoder as a base for initial few days and use your rented car to move around. It will be easy for you to use your car rather than moving on public transport etc, which can consume your considerable time. There are beautiful lakes and valley around. If you want you can cover whole Albania in this time frame, because it is not so large.
I am with all the above comments. Private car is the best and fast option to roam around in Albania.
Koma Lake is a must seen.
Thanks @Nature_Love for your thoughts. Albania is no doubt is worth seeing!