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Traveling to ALBANIA – Trying ALBANIAN FOOD For the First Time | Miami to Tirana


After 5 months of quarantining at home during COVID-19, I made the decision to travel to Albania, one of the few countries around the world that was open to American travelers at the time, in early August of 2020. Come along with me as I show you what it’s like traveling to Albania and trying Albanian food for the first time during a pandemic!

My travel day began at my second home, Miami International Airport. I was both excited and nervous to be traveling again, but Albania didn’t have any restrictions in order to enter the country. I couldn’t wait to explore my 78th country! My trip would be 14 days in total and I could not wait.

My travel route to Albania would take me through London Heathrow via a 9-hour British Airways flight. Because I was just transiting, I wouldn’t have to quarantine. I’d have a 4-hour connection there and then take a 3-hour flight to Albania! I’d be touring the entire country and fully immersing myself in the culture, food, history, and more!

I put on my mask and headed to my gate. My flight was pretty empty with just 153 people onboard. One of our plane’s engines didn’t start at first, so we had a bit of a scary moment to start! But once we took off, I was out like a light for seven hours. Because of COVID-19, they don’t serve hot meals onboard, so I had a box with a croissant sandwich, yogurt, and yogurt. I recommend bringing snacks with you because the food isn’t very substantial.

You must have a mask on in airports at all times. After I landed in London Heathrow, I saw that it was like a ghost town just like Miami’s airport. I headed through security and went to one of the British Airways lounges.

They have strict social distancing rules in the lounge. I got a vegetarian breakfast sandwich with quiche and hash browns and a double espresso. I was still nervous, but I had spoken to the American Embassy in Albania, who assured me I’d have no issues entering the country.

After my 4-hour wait, I headed to Gate A-18. My flight was pretty turbulent, so it was a little intense. Then, after 17 hours of travel, I landed in Tirana, Albania, where I didn’t have to wear a mask outdoors. I met up with my friend Sokol from Rental Car Albania, who gave me a great car to drive around in for 14 days! He gifted me a bottle of Albanian rakija, which is a delicious distilled drink!

As we drove through Tirana, I noticed lots of trees on our way to the city center, where I was staying. I had a two-bedroom apartment, which only cost me $100 USD for 3 nights. It was super spacious and had a nice living room, nice bathrooms, a dining room, a beautiful view of Tirana, some shelves, and more. It was incredible!

But I was starving, so I met up with Ani from Balkan Pearl Tour Operator and Erjan from Travel Media EU to get some souvlaki, which is basically a gyro! It was super garlicky and I loved the thick pita bread and the amount of spice! Then, I went back to my Airbnb to get some sleep!

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About Me:

My name is David Hoffmann. For the last 12 years, I have been traveling around the world in search of unique culture, food, and history! Since starting David’s Been Here in 2008, I have traveled to over 1,100 destinations in 78 countries, which I welcome you to check out on my YouTube channel, travel blog, and social media sites.

I focus a great deal on food and historical sites, as you probably have seen! I love to experience the different flavors that each destination has to offer, from casual street food to gourmet restaurant dining. I’m also passionate about learning about the local history and culture.

P.S. Thank you for watching my videos and subscribing!

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