There are a few things you need to know about Valbona. First, if you are traveling in northern Albania, you need to stop there for a few nights. Second, it is truly in the middle of nowhere, so make sure to stock up on cash to pay for your stay at Hotel Rilindja, and snacks if you are in to that sort of thing.
I had planned on staying in Valbona for two nights to get some good hiking in, but unfortunately my clumsiness got the best of me and I fell down the stairs and rolled my ankle after one day there…but if anyone asks I hurt it doing some really hardcore rock climbing.
If you like the outdoors and hiking, going to Valbona is a no-brainer. It’s beautiful, and unmarred by tourism, homes, and other businesses. Just you, nature, and cows. Here are some pictures if you don’t believe me. But, they don’t do the place justice.
Lots of cows up there. This one was a loner that was following me for awhile.
If you end up going, just remember, there are bears there. And, although there are bear encounter instructions, they don’t really make you feel much better about coming in contact with a bear:
“Try to remain as quiet as possible until the attack ends.” Really? I feel like you will either be screaming or have fainted if a bear is attacking you.