The Albanian festivals and holidays make up a relatively short list. There is one unique aspect that I will write about below. However, in general, although Albanians are a cheerful and hospitable people who enjoy feasting and celebrations, they don’t have as many holidays. There are no grand-scale and globally famous celebrations like the carnival in Brazil or Venice.
In this article at the link, you can read about the pros and cons of Albania for tourists.
National Holidays of Albania
National holidays in Albania are considered to be the holidays approved by the country’s parliament. Typically, these days are declared as days off in the country, but it is not a mandatory criterion.
Below, I will try to list all the main national holidays celebrated in Albania, along with my comments. I will list them in chronological order for convenience.
- January 1-2 – New Year’s Day. It is always celebrated for two days, and both days are days off. Sometimes there are a few more days off, for example, when January 3 falls on a Sunday. But as a rule, December 31 is a shortened workday, January 1-2 are days off, and January 3 is a regular workday.
- In Albanian, New Year is called “Viti i Ri.”
- March 14 – officially known as “Day of Summer.” In Albania, mid-March already has warm and comfortable weather. And from April onwards, tourists start coming for vacations. Read all about the season and weather in Albania.
- In Albanian, this holiday is called “Dita e Verës.”
- March 22 – Nowruz. It is also a spring holiday, but according to the astronomical calendar and for the Islamic part of the population. In Albania, it is a national holiday since Islam is followed by over 60% of the population. But there is interesting information about religion in Albania in the article at the link.
- May 1 – Labor Day. Nothing more to add.
- October 19 – Mother Teresa Day. It is an official national holiday approved by the country’s parliament. Mother Teresa is the most famous Albanian in the world, and she is highly respected and revered here.
- November 28-29, two important holidays in Albania. The whole country has days off on both days.
- November 28 – Independence Day or Flag Day of Albania. In Albanian, it is called “Dita e Pavarësisë.”
- November 29 – Liberation Day of Albania from German occupation during World War II. The holiday is called “Dita e Çlirimit.”
Useful to know:Albanian language is not similar to any European language. You can read everything a tourist needs to know about Albanian in the article at the link.
- December 8 – Youth Day. An official holiday in the country.
- December 24-25 – Catholic Christmas. There will be information about the uniqueness of this and other religious holidays below.
Other public holidays of Albania
Those holidays that exist in the Albanian calendar, some of them differ from ours. But on these days, it is a regular workday.
- March 7 – Teacher’s Day. Here, it is celebrated in the spring and always on the eve of International Women’s Day.
- March 8 – Mother’s Day. In Albania, on this day, all women of all ages are congratulated. But special attention is given to mothers, and it is not International Women’s Day here, but specifically Mother’s Day.
- April 1 – April Fool’s Day, just like ours.
- June 1 – Children’s Day, just like ours. By the way, don’t confuse it with Youth Day, which is celebrated in December in Albania. These are two different holidays.
Albanian Festivals: Floating Holidays
Here is where Albania’s uniqueness is hidden, an example even set by Pope Francis. In Albania, all three major world religions coexist harmoniously with each other. Without conflicts, terror, misunderstandings, and the like.
Useful to know:All three major religious holidays of Catholics, Orthodox Christians, and Muslims are national holidays in Albania.
- Orthodox Easter
- Catholic Easter
- Kurban Bayram
And all three of these holidays are days off in Albania. That’s why Pope Francis chose Albania as the first country to visit after assuming office in 2014. He wanted to show the world how different religions can coexist together.
Regarding travel trends in Albania for tourists, you can read about them in a separate article.
Albanians love holidays and enjoy lively, festive celebrations. However, as you can see, they don’t have a large number of holidays. The main holidays in Albania are New Year, Mother Teresa Day, Independence Day, Liberation Day, and, of course, the three major religious holidays.
I wish that your journey falls on one of these holidays. Then you will witness how Albanians celebrate and enjoy themselves.
Resources to help you plan your dream trip to Albania
- Flights at the best prices with juicy discounts
- Car rental in Albania (cheaper – only by bus):
- Hotels and apartments throughout the country: Booking
- Tours, excursions and activities (including extreme ones):
- Comprehensive travel insurance: EKTA
- eSIM virtual sim card in Albania
- Taxi and transfers: Intui.Travel