Everything about a family vacation in Albania with children, covering all the peculiarities and essential information for parents. This is an important topic for all families planning a holiday here with their child. Albania may not be as exotic as Zanzibar, but it has long remained unpopular, so we know relatively little about it, even regarding vacations for adults.

  • Therefore, I highly recommend reading an article about travel trends in Albania. After reading it, you will have a clear picture of the vacation that awaits you.
albania with kids
In the orange backpack behind is a little one, not even the rain can scare him, as he has a roof 🙂 But we’ll provide more information about that later.

Family Vacation in Albania

Let me clarify upfront that my wife and I don’t have children. However, we have extensive experience in organizing trips to Albania for families with kids. We are often asked for advice or help with planning itineraries, and I see the common issues and questions that concern parents. Our friends also visit us regularly for 3-4 weeks with their young child, and we travel around the country together.

Vacationing in Albania with Children: General Aspects

Briefly and concisely, you’ll understand everything yourself:

  • Albania is an absolutely safe country today. Tourists can feel at ease anywhere, at any time of day. You can read more about safety here.
  • Albanians are incredibly kind and hospitable. They love children and often offer little gifts to your child in cafes, restaurants, and hotels.

Important to know:

When booking apartments in Albania (links to excellent resources at the end of the article), it’s customary to mention the child so that the host is aware. A couple of times, we forgot to mention it when the child was just two years old, and the hosts were quite surprised to find a child there :). But there were no difficulties with this.

Once, someone asked us how we would manage without a crib for the child. They were even more surprised to learn that the child was small and could sleep with the parents in the bed. In Albanian families, this is not uncommon.
  • Albania boasts 300+ sunny days a year, more than Montenegro or Spain.
  • Additionally, there are two seas here: the Ionian and the Adriatic.

The most crucial point in Albania that delights all parents:

The country has legislation banning the use of GMOs. It is the only European country with such a law. All products here are labeled organic and natural. Due to this, Albania doesn’t even have McDonald’s. The food is so healthy and nutritious that you’ll hardly find overweight people here. Now, let’s delve into the topic of food.
food in albania for children
In Albania, for example, you won’t find broiler chickens. Their chickens are lean and yellow-blue, but they are natural. The broth made from such chickens is excellent.

Food for Children in Albania

Of course, every parent has different requirements and preferences for their child’s food, and the age of the children varies. However, the overall picture is as follows:

  • The cuisine in the country is a mix of Mediterranean, Balkan, Italian, Greek, and Albanian influences.
    • There are no spicy or salty dishes, no exotic flavors like in Asia.
    • The main ingredients used in most dishes include:
      • Meat: beef, lamb, chicken
      • Plenty of vegetables: tomatoes, cucumbers, salads, eggplants
      • Cheese: there is a vast selection, especially brined cheeses like feta and brinza
      • Plenty of fruits, especially in season: persimmons, pomegranates, all citrus fruits, grapes
    • You can find more details about Albanian cuisine here.
  • In any store, there’s a section with baby food, formulas, etc. The selection is always more than sufficient.


If you can’t find a specific type of baby food in the regular supermarket, try visiting a pharmacy. Our friends couldn’t find a particular type of juice in the store and always bought it at the pharmacy. Albanian pharmacies carry baby food items that you won’t find in typical supermarkets.
child goods in albania
Our friends’ daughter ate together with us.

Vacationing in Albania with Children: Transportation

This is the most interesting topic and perhaps one of the few things with some downsides. Or rather, things that parents need to be prepared for. The potential challenges won’t be for the child but for you 🙂

Let’s divide this chapter into three logical sections:

  • Traveling by car with your child
  • Exploring the city on foot with or without a stroller
  • Visiting attractions outside the cities

Traveling by Car in Albania with children

If you’ve already started preparing for your vacation and planning your travel itinerary, then you know:

  • Albania is made for road trips.
  • The country offers a vast number of natural and man-made attractions throughout its territory.
  • If you prefer staying in one place, head to Egypt. Albania won’t leave you with such impressions if you spend your entire vacation in a hotel. All-inclusive resorts are also scarce here.

Important to know:

According to Albanian traffic regulations, you can transport children only in child car seats. However, locals often ignore this rule. But you wouldn’t do the same, right? If you rent a car from a small rental company on-site, they might not have child car seats or might have ones that are not the right size, etc. My advice is to always book a car from reputable companies where there will never be any problems with child car seats.

You can find everything about car rentals in Albania, personal experiences, and potential pitfalls here. Also, bear in mind that you won’t get far on public transportation in Albania as it is poorly developed.

Moving Around Cities with or Without a Stroller

This is the most significant challenge in Albania.

The absence of barrier-free environments:

Rarely will you find wide sidewalks, ramps, or pedestrian crossings with smooth descents for strollers anywhere in Albania (except Tirana). Don’t expect to find these facilities.

Usually, moving around with a stroller is painful and challenging. Most cities have medieval architecture where wide sidewalks were unheard of. Cobbled streets in the city centers are entirely normal. Also, don’t forget that 71% of Albania’s territory is mountainous, meaning many cities are situated on hills. Even the seaside towns are often hilly.

Below, you’ll find recommendations for beach destinations suitable for families with children.

family vacation in albania
A typical day in an average Albanian city during a cultural program

Outside Cities

Albania is stunning with its natural attractions: waterfalls, hot springs, canyons. You can read the full list of all the country’s attractions here (it will take about 30 minutes to read). However, most of these places are not easily accessible by car.

If you’re an active family and don’t want to just sit on the beach, most of your activities will look like this:

  • Drive to the parking area near the desired attraction.
  • Put on trekking shoes, grab walking sticks, and secure your child in a special carrier.
  • Embark on a 1-5 km hiking trip through mountains, canyons, or along rivers to reach your destination.

Important to know:

You won’t find any of this equipment available for rent in Albania. You need to bring everything with you from home, especially the carrier, as it’s virtually unheard of here. The type of carrier shown in the photo below was brought by our friends with them. They bought it in Germany a couple of years ago.
  • This type of carrier for your child solves all travel-related issues in Albania!

Beach vacation in Albania with children

I’ll provide advice, and the decision is yours. Here are the criteria:

  • Presence of the sea and a beach.
  • Shallow sea.
  • City without hills.
  • Good infrastructure, including a clinic with pediatricians.
  • A large and flat promenade for strolling with a stroller.
  • Availability of playgrounds.

Useful to know:

There are very few large cities in the country, and decent clinics are not everywhere. It’s good if you can find a pediatrician, but often, even that is not available. During our vacation, we encountered a small incident, and we had to take our child to a doctor. The nearest one was 100 km away from us. Thankfully, our child was fine, but keep this fact in mind. By the way, comprehensive medical insurance, especially for children, is mandatory for traveling to Albania. You can find a comprehensive article about this here.

In conclusion, there are only two, well, maybe three cities that meet these criteria:

  • Vlora. It’s a major city with all the necessary infrastructure. Sandy beaches, a long and perfectly flat promenade. It’s relatively close to Tirana. The sea is warm and shallow.
  • The second place in the ranking is Saranda. It has pebble beaches, and the city is a bit smaller than Vlora, but it also has similar infrastructure.
  • The last place on the list, well, not really last, I’m just mentioning it so you know – Durres and Golem. Honestly, I don’t like this resort. But it might be suitable for a family vacation in Albania with children. This area has several downsides. For example, you won’t find a promenade for strolling; it’s only available in the old town of Durres, but tourists don’t usually stay there, and it’s far away.
    • You can read about all the downsides of Durres and the list of other cities in Albania here.
    • Durres has only one significant advantage – its proximity to the capital and the airport. It’s only 40 km away.
beach vacation with children
We are on the beach in Ksamil, having come from Saranda. The beach is great for children, but there’s not much to explore around here.

Vacationing in Albania with Children: Parental Advice

I hope you have no more questions. So, in summary:

  • Children are loved here, and it’s entirely safe.
  • The country offers healthy and nutritious food. There are plenty of options for various dairy products, yogurts, fruits, and more. Your child won’t go hungry.
  • A carrier for active travelers will solve all your problems.
  • If you don’t plan to go into the mountains and just want to stay by the sea, I recommend choosing Vlora or Saranda.
  • Don’t forget about insurance; healthcare in Albania is free for locals but paid for foreigners.

In conclusion: Family vacation in Albania with children is wonderful, and the absence of ramps and sidewalks won’t spoil your overall impression of the country. The key is to be informed and prepared for it.

Wishing you a fantastic trip with your entire family!

Resources to help you plan your dream trip to Albania

  • Flights at the best prices with best discounts
  • Car rental in Albania (cheaper – only by bus):
    • DiscoverCars – a major international resource
    • LocalRent – the leader in the Albanian car rental market. Very low deposits, even in cash.
  • Hotels and apartments throughout the country:
    • Hotellook – compares prices among dozens of platforms and offer you the best one.
    • Booking – large online booking platform.
    • Agoda – even more accommodation options in Albania.
  • Tours, excursions and activities:
    • GetYourGuide – more than 550 tours
    • Viator – 920+ excursions and activities throughout the country
  • Comprehensive travel insurance: EKTA
  • Internet and Calls:
    • Airalo eSIM in Albania from $4.5
    • DRIMSIM – universal SIM card (or eSIM) in any country in the world.
  • Taxi and airport transfer: Intui.Travel