|Destination Airport IATA Code||TIA|
|Number of Airlines Serving|
|Airlines||British Airways, easyJet, Alitalia, Lufthansa, Blu-Express, Air Serbia, Austrian Airlines, Norwegian Air Shuttle, Air France, LOT-Polish Airlines|
|Earliest Departing Flight|
|Latest Departing Flight|
It may be one of Europe’s smallest capitals, but Albania’s lively capital has plenty to offer visitors; the ever-increasing number of international flights to Tirana’s Rinas International Airport is symbolic of how it is fast shaking off its sombre past to become one of the most exciting cities in the Balkans. With a fascinating history shaped by Western, Ottoman and Soviet influences, and landmarks including museums, monuments, modernist apartment blocks and the arresting Piramida structure, this is one holiday destination that packs a forceful cultural punch.
Albania has a Mediterranean climate that brings fairly hot summers, and both its climate and its proximity to the coast make it a viable option for those looking to visit the beach during their stay. You’re most likely to find cheap tickets to Tirana from January to March, when the weather is colder but still quite mild. If you’re visiting in March, you’ll get to experience the Summer Day celebrations held on the 14th. On this day, people feast on ballokume, a traditional dessert, and festivities include a huge circus event in Tirana’s Rinia Park.
The only airline that offers direct flights to Tirana from the UK is British Airways. The national carrier departs from London Gatwick, and the flight time to the Albanian capital is just under three hours. Alitalia, Austrian Airlines and Lufthansa all have regular one-stop flights from Heathrow and Gatwick. Turkish Airlines and Lufthansa also serve Birmingham with indirect flights, though the flight time is significantly longer, and Austrian Airlines fly from Manchester via Vienna. Scottish passengers can get a flight from Glasgow or Edinburgh to Tirana via London with British Airways.
Rinas International Airport is situated just 11 miles from Tirana city centre, so getting to your final destination should be quick and easy. You can make the 25-minute journey to the centre by taxi for around 2,500 lek each way. Alternatively, you can catch the Rinas Express bus, which departs for the National Museum in the city centre hourly from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. – a single-trip ticket costs 250 lek and the journey lasts around 30 minutes. There are also a number of car-rental companies at the airport if you prefer to get around under your own steam.
Skanderbeg Square is the ideal place to start your tour of Tirana. Nowhere is Albania’s varied history more evident than in this central plaza, which is surrounded by sights such as the National History Museum, the Palace of Culture, Et’hem Bey Mosque, City Hall and the clock tower. The trendy Blloku neighbourhood is a great spot for nightlife, offering a variety of restaurants, bars and clubs. For a revealing insight into Albania’s past combined with a dash of culture, take a trip outside the city to visit Bunk’Art – a former Cold War bunker that’s been converted into an art museum.
*Savings based on all holiday package bookings with Flight + Hotel on ebookers.com from January 2017 to December 2017, as compared to the price of the same components booked separately. Savings will vary based on origin/destination, length of trip, stay dates and selected travel supplier(s). Savings not available on all packages. For Free Flight or 100% Off Flight deals, package savings is greater than or equal to the current cost of one component, when both are priced separately.
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