A new arrival on the celebration circuit, Albania is seducing younger holidaymakers to dance on its beaches and explore beyond its pristine shores
Just how seriously the Albanian ministry of tourism was taking Kala festival- the first international event of its kind in the country- became clear the moment we stepped off the boat at Saranda to find a police escort waiting to accompany our coaches on the winding, mountainous transfer. That and the arrival of prime minister Edi Rama the following day, for an impromptu poolside press conference with the organisers at our hotel.
” Albania has always been beautiful ,” he mused, as an inflatable pink flamingo floated across the pool behind him.” But people think of it as a place where you get robbed or killed … But the stigma has helped us. When person visits and gets out alive, they realise it’s paradise! It’s like the proscribe apple: don’t bite it or you’ll wishing it all the time .”
As for his thoughts on Kala?” I have to admit, I don’t know anything about the festival but, in principle, it’s fantastic ,” he said, offering one night of free Albanian beer before disappearing.
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