How far is Tirana from Saranda?

I really enjoy travelling from Tirana to Saranda, however, there is very little information online about busses or taxis to Saranda. And nobody explains how to drive from Tirana to Saranda. So, I decided to write a helpful blogpost about it.

How far is Tirana from Saranda? Tirana is 280 kilometres from Saranda. You can travel from Tirana to Saranda by bus, by car or by taxi. The bus trip takes 5 hours and costs €12. Driving from Tirana to Saranda will take 5 or 6 hours, depending on which route you take. A taxi from Tirana to Saranda costs between €160 – €190.

The most beautiful beaches are in the south of Albania, but the Tirana airport is in the centre of the country. So, how do you get from Tirana to the beaches of Saranda? Moreover, it can be difficult to find the public transportation information, if you do not speak the local language. Therefore, let’s make sure you have all the information you need for your trip from Tirana to Saranda.

How to travel from Tirana to Saranda?

If you plan to travel from Tirana to Saranda, you choose from the following options:

1.       Tirana to Saranda bus

2.       Tirana to Saranda by car

3.       Tirana to Saranda taxi

Tirana to Saranda bus

The cheapest way to travel from Tirana to Saranda is travelling by bus. A bus ticket will cost you only 1300 LEK, which is roughly €12.

The bus trip will take you 4 hours and 55 minutes from Tirana to Saranda. Bear in mind that Tirana and Saranda are quite far away from each other. Even though, Tirana is in the centre of Albania, you will be travelling all the way to the south of Albania to visit Saranda.

The bus to Saranda has several departures during the day. Here is the Tirana to Saranda bus timetable. The bus from Tirana to Saranda departs 7 times a day between 5:30am and 22:00pm. It is best to travel to the bus terminal early in the morning. Because four busses depart early at 5:30am, 7:30am, 8:30am and 9:45am.

Bus departs Tirana:Bus arrives in Saranda:
5:3010:25
7:3012:25
8:3013:25
9:4514:40
12:3017:25
16:0020:55
22:0002:55 (next morning)

It is not necessary to book your bus ticket online. Instead, you can simply buy a ticket at the bus station. In fact, in Albania there are very few people who order and pay for items online. Albania is a country, where people are used to paying in cash on the spot.

The bus to Saranda departs from the Regional Bus terminal, which is located next to the Dogana roundabout. The bus terminal is 5 kilometres from the city centre of Tirana. Therefore, if you are staying in the city centre of Tirana, you will need to take a local bus or a taxi to the Dogana roundabout. You can tell the taxi driver, that you want to go to “shiponja”, which is the Albanian name for the roundabout.

From the city centre of Tirana, there are two busses that stop at the Dogana roundabout. You can take the bus to Instituti (line 7) or the bus for Tirana Re (line 2). The bus for Instituti (line 7) departs at the backside of the National History Museum. And the bus for Tirana Re (line 2) departs behind the Tirana International Hotel.

Tirana to Saranda taxi

Instead of travelling by bus, you can also choose to book a private transfer or taxi from Tirana to Saranda. The prices are significantly higher than for a bus ticket. For a taxi which accommodates 3-4 people, you can expect to pay between €160 – €190. The travel time will be around 5 hours, just like the bus journey.

How long to drive from Tirana to Saranda?

It takes 5 or 6 hours to drive from Tirana to Saranda depending on the route you take. You can choose between driving through the middle of Albania or driving along the coast. The road along the coast is longer, but it is a very scenic and beautiful route.

The fastest route from Tirana to Saranda will take you 5 hours. From Tirana, drive to the coastal city Durres. From Durres, you need to take the road to the south in the direction of Kavaje and Fier. From Fier, you will drive inland towards Tepelene and Gjirokaster. Then from Gjirokaster, you drive towards the coast to reach Saranda. This route is the fastest way to reach Saranda.

Alternatively, you can drive by the coast to reach Saranda, which is a very beautiful route. Because you will pass by all the little hidden beaches of the Albanian Riviera on your way to the south. From Tirana, drive towards Durres. And then, you need to take the coastal road to the south. Along your way, you will pass by cities Fier, Vlore, Dhermi, Himare and many beaches. With this route it will take you 6 hours to reach Saranda, but it is worth it!

How is the road between Tirana and Saranda?

The quality of the road between Tirana and Saranda is good. In fact, the road along the coast has recently been renewed. If you have read anything about bad quality roads in Albania, this is not applicable of the road between Tirana in Saranda.

Moreover, if you plan on visiting mountainous or remote areas in Albania, you may need a four-wheel drive car. However, for the Albanian Riviera and Saranda a regular car is fine.

Can you travel from Tirana to Saranda by train?

Albania has very few working trains and a limited rail network. The trains in Albania date back from the period that the communists ruled the country. Since, that time many plans have been presented to invest in the rail network. However, so far these investments have not taken place. Therefore, if you plan on making a journey in Albania, it is best to travel by car, by bus or by taxi.

The only reason to take a train in Albania is for the adventure. So that, you can experience the communist trains in action. The trains are by no means fast, but they pass through some beautiful countryside. The locals do not take the train, because any bus will get them to their destination faster.

How to travel from Corfu to Saranda?

The airport in Tirana is not very close to Saranda. However, there is a closer airport on the Greek Corfu island. The island of Corfu is just in front of the Albanian coast. The distance between the Greek island and the Albanian coast is only 18 kilometres. Therefore, if your destination is Saranda, it might be faster for you to fly to Corfu island.

From Corfu island, you can take a ferry across the sea to Saranda. The boat trip takes 30 minutes by high speed boat or 70 minutes by ferry boat. The prices vary from €19.00 in low season to €23.80 in high season.

Depending on the time you plan to visit, there are between 1-5 ferry boat departures a day. In the low season, the boat only departs at 9:00am. However, in the summer there are 5 departures between 9:00am and 18:30pm.

When you search online for ferry boat tickets, you will see many operators. However, you will soon realize that many of these companies work together and sell each other’s tickets. Some of the boat operators are Joy Lines, Ionian Seaways, Sarris Cruises and Finikas Lines.

Related Questions

How do I get from Saranda to Ksamil? From Saranda, you can take a taxi or a bus to reach Ksamil beach. The taxi costs 10 euros and a bus ticket cost only 1 euro. Ksamil is only 30 minutes to the south of Saranda. You can combine your visit to Ksamil with a visit to Butrint, because both attractions are close together.

How do I get from Saranda to Butrint? From Saranda, you can take a taxi or a bus to Butrint. The bus trip will cost you 100 LEK (1 euro) and it takes only 20 minutes. The bus departs hourly between 8:30 and 5:30pm outside the ZIT information centre. Or you can take a taxi which will cost you 10 euros.

Image Credit

Saranda by night 2016 | My Cottage | Flickr
Saranda Port, Albania | Alice Key Studios | Pixabay
Saranda, Albania 1 | Images by Gina | WikiCommons