Albania and Antigonea

We weren’t blogging the non cycling part of the trip but we thought where we’ve stayed in Albania deserves a bit of a mention!
We volunteered on an archaeological site in Albania called Antigonea for five days and it was incredible.
It was near the town of Gjirokastra, an old ottoman town with a fantastic castle and great communism museum.
The first night we saw the most famous band in Albania, Elita 5 with the park’s owner Engjell and his son Enea who is Jordy’s age and we stayed in Gjiorkastra
The next day we were taken to a tiny village called Saraqinishte where we stayed at a traditional house just a few kilometres from the park. We had a wood fired oven and had our milk delivered on a donkey each day! Not to mention a dozen fresh eggs each morning!
Working at the park was hot but fun. There was a lot to do, mostly concerned with tiding up the place and waging war against the weeds and blackberries that were threatening to take over.
There was a volleyball net set up so lunch breaks were great!
We had a great team with us over the five days; Stefan, Gazim, Enea and Engjell.
The champions of the week’s volleyball tournament was unfortunately Dad, mum and Stefan but only because he was as tall as a giant and guarded the net with vigilante reflexes!
On our last day a news crew came to interview us and we made national news the next day!
We also were treated to some traditional food both at Engjell’s house and with the family that owned the one we were staying in. Part of the meal was a whole sheep on the spit. It was fun watching mum politely accept half the face when she was given it. The teeth and eyes were still there!
We also stayed at Berat, another old ottoman town at a beautiful Ottoman house and in Saranda on the coast that had amazing beaches.
We thou roughly enjoyed Albania- a fantastic place to visit!

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Filed under 2012, Ankara to Athens, Gallery

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