The quite ambitious “Peaks of the Balkans” trail comprises 192 km and completes a circuit crossing the three countries. It leads through high alpine landscape up to 2300 metres above sea level in the border region in Dobërdol (Albania) and Milishevc (Kosovo).
The hike can be started in each country: Theth (Albania); Plav (Montenegro); or, in the small town of Pejë (Kosovo). The 10 stages of the trail can be hiked in 10 to 13 days, depending on the motivation and condition of the hiker. The level of difficulty ranges from easy to moderate, but requires good physical condition and mountain equipment (e.g. hiking boots, waterproof clothing, lamps, GPS, first aid kit, mobile phone). Even though the whole trail is marked and signposted, it partly leads through uninhabited mountain regions. Hence, it is recommended to hike in a group or accompanied by a hiking guide.
Local mountain guides, trained by the DAV (Deutscher Alpen Verein) and familiar with the trail, are ready to accompany individuals and small groups.
Fast facts about the trail
Elevation min: 670 meters (near Cerem, Albania) max: 2,290 meters (near the border, the trail: Dobёrdol, Albania – Milishevc, Kosovo)
Cumulative height uphill: approx. 9,800 meters downhill: 9,900 meters
The level of difficulty along the Peaks of the Balkans Trail ranges from easy to moderate.
Levels of difficulty (on a scale from easy to difficult)
Easy: gentle ascents only, comfortable paths and an easy orientation even without a map.
Moderate: follows a marked path, possibly with steep inclines and some risk of falling. Basic orientation skills and sure-footedness required.
Difficult: usually no recognizable path. Terrain requires a well-developed ability to assess terrain accurately and excellent orientation skills. Several highly exposed sections, difficult slopes. Experience and familiarity with alpine equipment required.
The GPS (UTM) data provided in the different sections is three-fold:
waypoint number, UTM coordinates, and altitude. Within the text, the waypoint numbers (e.g. WP 1) refer to the items listed at the end of each description.