Albania

People everywhere, but beautiful landscapes and a generous welcome!

Where is the Albania?

Its flag

albania-flag

General data

  • Area: 28 748 km².
  • Population: 020 3,209 inhabitants (estimate 2014).
  • Density: 105 inhab / km².
  • Capital: Tirana. The city and its suburbs comprise approximately 20% of the population of the country.
  • Head of State: Bujar Nishani (since July 24, 2012).
  • Status: Republic. Independence was achieved on 28 November 1912, at the time of the gradual breakup of the ottoman empire.
  • Currency: the lek. In July 2014, €1 = 140 leke and 1000 leke = €7,15.
  • Average salary revolves around €230 per month
  • Religion: Islamic majority (approximately 65%; also the Orthodox (about 20%) and Catholics (about 13%).)
  • Ethnic groups: homogeneous population, with 95% of Albanians for 3% of Greeks and 2% of other origins (Vlachs, Roma, Bulgarians, Macedonians). That said, the Greeks estimates vary quite widely according to interlocutors - up to 12% for those interested! The Albanians are divided themselves into two groups: Tosks (North) and Tosques (South).
  • Unesco World Heritage sites: Butrint (1992); historic centres of Berat and Gjirokastra (2005).
  • Lag: None. (But given the geographical position East of the zone, the sun rises and sets earlier.)

History and tradition

The land of Eagles

The legend mentions an antique, clever hero arc who in his youth, saved an eaglet from the bite of a snake. In gratitude, the bird gave him his protection, the strength of his wings and the force of his gaze. Renowned for his bravery, invincible in a Word, it came to be known as Shqipetar, "Eagle man", and was raised to the throne by his people. It is, said, that the Albania took the name of "land of Eagles".

Religion

In 1967, the regime of Enver Hoxha banned all religions. The Albania becomes the first (and only) Officially atheist state in the world. Hundreds of religious are sent to the Gulag, mosques, such, churches and monasteries destroyed or turned into party room or storage sheds! They will be reopened only in 1992, after the fall of the regime.

Today, the practice is not returned. Lees Albanians are pretty little practicing, but attached to the traditions related to the religion. An Italian study dating from World War II (the last dated!) gives the following figures: 65-70% Muslim, 20% Orthodox and 10-13% Catholics – which was Mother Teresa, Albanian from Macedonia.

GEO

Stretched between the Balkan foothills and the Adriatic Seathe Albania is a world of transition, between Central Europe and the Mediterranean, between Christianity and islam.

Territory two-thirds is mountainous.

The forest covers about a third of the territory.

The coastlinestretched on 362 km,

The country is littered with mini-bunkers, remains of the Stalinist dictatorship. Seen throughout the roads, on the beaches, in the same cities. There were once every 100 to 150 m!

Language

Belonging to the Indo-European family, Albanian, Greek and Armenian cousin, descended from the language spoken by the ancient Illyrians

Sport

The Albanians are great lovers of foot. Clubs Shqip are not miracles, but this does not prevent the enthusiasm. Once a year, the Albanians let go for the national championship BOLAS. The principle is the same as for launching iron horse: the game is to take on one of the three bars of an espalier of "bolas" formed of two balls connected by a rope. The origins probably date back to Spanish firearm, with two balls and without spikes.

Thanks du routard!

Some impressions about the country

-People in the countryside are very hospitable and we are constantly "hello" when one passes.

-In the countryside or small towns, we see full of hens kept in freedom, and also many herds of goats, a few cows, sheep...

-To find water: we saw on The backpacker that the tap water is not potable. Then to fill our gourds, they do not hesitate to exit our filter water! On the other hand, it is nice, valves pretty easily everywhere.