View of Berat, Albania from Berat Castle hill.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Berat, Albania.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? South towards Greece.

Friday, April 2, 2021

Unfortunately, we didn't get too far!

In case you missed yesterday's late in the day post, you can read it here...

Thursday was another beautiful day, so we hopped in the car and did a short trip up into the mountains. Unfortunately, we didn't get too far!

When you get up into the mountains here in Albania, you don't find very many paved roads. And the gravel roads can be in pretty poor condition. We were warned about this when we picked up our Albania car rental and they told us that many roads that look passable on a map are only passable with a four wheel drive. 

They also rent four wheel drive vehicles, and we may take advantage of that when we get into the mountains north of Tirana later in the trip.

Scenery along the way.

As soon as we turned off the main highway, the road was unpaved.

And it was 13 kms (8 miles) to where we wanted to go. It wasn't in bad condition though for the most part. Certainly passable by driving slowly.

A little rough in spots, but not bad if you go slowly.

We are trying to get closer to that mountain!

But eventually, the road became too steep. I got out and walked to see what it was like further up, but decided that it wasn't going to be suitable for a two wheel drive car!

Me, getting out to walk up ahead and check out the road.

We decided to park the car and carry on by foot.

Did I mention it was a beautiful day?

Sunny blue skies, very little wind, and 22C (71F).


This rough road leads into Tomorri National Park, but it also goes to a couple of small villages, as well as providing access to all of the olive grove plantations in the surrounding hills.

Starting to gain some altitude.

Sardinian warbler.

Looking back.

Looking ahead.


Village down in the valley.

More scenery.

Getting higher.

Another village.

Getting closer.

This is as far as we walked.

We had done 3.7 kms (2.3 miles) and gained 375 meters (1,225') in elevation, so it was a good workout. And of course we still had to go back down. We found a spot to enjoy the view and sat and had some lunch.

Then we walked back down to the car, and slowly drove back to the main highway.

Farmland in the valley.

We still had some time, so we decided to drive a little further on the main highway to see what there was to see.


More great scenery.

We ended up at the town of Poliçan (pronounced Polichan) where we saw some interesting buildings down in the valley below.

And on the hillsides. Strange.

Research when we got back home found out that the town of  Poliçan was built in the 1960s by the Communist government with the purpose of creating an industrial town for the production of weapons and munitions.

When that government fell in 1990, the factories were closed.

Interesting stuff.

Even though we didn't make it as far as we wanted, it was still a good day!

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  1. Oh, those views and seeing forever, so awesome!! You know where we live there is nothing like that. Thank you for sharing your day with us. Love it, love it, love it💕 Do you ever see wild animals or even other people?

    1. Yes, the views here are fantastic as you get higher, and you know how much we love the mountains. I remember there being some beautiful views from around where you live, like that one day Kevin and hiked up to Locust Ridge Vista in Bald Eagle State Forest when we stopped by to visit you. You have some beautiful views there. :-)

      Since we have been here in Albania, we have not seen any wild animals but we do see people. Many of them are working in their olive groves, trimming/pruning the trees and turning up the soil under them. And, on this hike we did see another guy hiking up the road as we were hiking back down.

  2. Possibly some of the buildings on the hillside could have been for munitions storage. I live near an ammunition factory, and they have a big field with little huts spaced out evenly, and each hut is designated to be able to hold a certain amount of ammunition. The purpose being that an explosion or fire in one batch wouldn't mean a total loss of everything. (The whole area is secured.)

    1. Yes, we assumed that they probably had something to do with the munition factory and what you have mentioned makes perfect sense. Thank you for explaining that to us. :-)

  3. Definitely beautiful scenery. Good thing you were up to the hike.
    Glad Sarah answered that question.
    What happened at the Dentist?
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

    1. After doing Kilimanjaro, just about any hike we do will be easy in comparison, plus the fact that we are always up for a hike! :-)

      I guess you missed the link in the blog post above that said you you missed our second post of the day which was after our expense report one, to go back and read it. Anyways, all the work that Kevin needed couldn't be done on Wednesday so he has to go back today (Saturday) and get the rest of the work done.

  4. Ruth is an excellent cook! I am always curious what you have when you stop on the trails for snacks or lunch. Curious minds want to know!

    1. Our snacks/lunch are really nothing special. We are still having a hard time finding gluten free bread so we are using gluten free crackers when we find them or plain potato chips, plus cheese and sandwich meat, or gluten free sausages, some yogurts and some fruit. I usually bring some peanuts along as well in case we are still hungry or it's a longer hike, as well as water of course. If I could find gluten free bread then I would bring sandwiches with us. Sometimes Kevin will make hard boiled eggs too, if we think about it ahead of time. So as I said, nothing special!

  5. You two see some beautiful areas! Those mountains are are beautiful. It's 90 degrees today in Green Valley, but the old saying, it's a dry heat is true! The only thing we don't walk Peanut,if we don't get up time.
    Take care,Rawn,Joann,Peanut!

    1. Yes, we really have seen some beautiful areas, and this is the kind of scenery that we really love.

      Dry heat or not, we would still rather have these temperatures. Mind you we would rather have your temperatures than to have freezing cold weather though!


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