10-Day Itinerary: The Balkans

10-Day Itinerary: The Balkans

I spent about two weeks traveling through the Balkans; specifically Croatia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Turkiye, Albania, Montenegro, Kosovo, and North Macedonia. Below is an outline of my itinerary. Click on the country for quick guides and photographs in those respective countries. 



Day Date Location Hotel To Do To Eat


Mar 10, 2024

Dubrovnik, Croatia

In Dubrovnik: Sunset Apartment

AirBnB. 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom with sea view. 

  • Cost: $87/night including service/cleaning fees


1. Explore Old City

Lunch in Dubrovnik: Fast Food Farma

Trogirska ul. 2A, 20000, Dubrovnik, Croatia

Sells pizzas, burgers, salads, and sandwiches. No beverages. Food is mediocre. 

  • Ordered: Margherita Pizza (€8,90)

Dinner in Dubrovnik: Mlinar Bakery

→ Čubranovićeva ul. 1, 20000, Dubrovnik, Croatia

The city started enforcing store closures on Sundays. We found an open bakery and ordered dinner to go. 

  • Ordered: ham, pepperoni, and cheese cazone, spinach, and cheese croissant. 

Mar 11, 2024

Dubrovnik, Croatia


Purchase the Dubrovnik pass for €35 to access major attractions. A ticket to the city wall is €35, but with the pass, you gain access to other museums and sites. 

1. Franciscan Church and Monastery

2. City Wall

3. Jesuit Steps

4. Saint Ignatius Church 

5. Maritime Museum

Breakfast: Coffee Break

→ Ul. branitelja Dubrovnika 41, 20000, Dubrovnik, Croatia

Located in the University. 

  • Ordered: Toast ham and cheese (€3,80), green detox smoothie (€6,80). Morning break (hot beverage, croissant, and orange juice combo (€6,90)

Lunch in Old City: Stradoon

Stradun 6, 20000, Dubrovnik, Croatia

  • Ordered: Red wine (€8), hummus (€8), papas bravas (€9)

Dinner in Old City: Taj Mahal

Ul. Nikole Gučetića 2, 20000, Dubrovnik, Croatia

Bosnian cuisine. 2023 Michelin Guide 

  • Ordered: Traditional experience, 3 dishes (€39 Hadzijski cevap, klepe, cuftice bosnian meatballs), marinated chicken (€21), mushrooms and kajmak (€18), Hurmasica (traditional sweet pastry in sugar syrup €8). and baklava and ice cream (€10)
3 Mar 12, 2024


In Sarajevo: Luxury Apartment

AirBnb. 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom. large lobby. beautiful property located in the middle close to the city center. 

  • Cost: $81/per night including service and cleaning fee. 

1. Kravice Waterfall

2. Medieval town Počitelj

3. Blagaj

4. Mostar

5. Jablanica

6. Konjic

7. Sarajevo


Lunch in Blagaj: Mlinica Restaurant

Blagaj BB, Blagaj 88201, Bosnia & Herzegovina

Chicken skewers (18km), cola (4km) OJ (4km)

Cash only. Takes Euro and Bosnian dollars.

Dinner in Sarajevo: Nanina Kuhinja

Kundurdžiluk 35, Sarajevo 71000, Bosnia & Herzegovina

Great service, large portions. Takes cash and card. 

  • Ordered: Bosnian Pot (veal, beef, various vegetables 15,90Km)
4 Mar 13, 2024

Istanbul, Turkiye

In Istanbul: Waterfront condo

AirBnB. 2 bedroom, 1.5 bathrooms. near the metro. 20 minutes on metro to the main attractions

  • Cost: $154/per night including service/cleaning charge

1. Dolmabahçe Palace

2. Food and Culture Tour

  • Cost: $128, included 16 different bites and a ferry

Dinner in Istanbul: Food Tour

5 Mar 14, 2024 Istanbul, Turkiye  

1. Blue Mosque

Free admission.

2. Hagia Sofia

  • Cost: €25.
  • Can only access the 2nd floor. 

3. Grand Bazaar

4. Turkish and Islamic Arts Museum

Lunch in Istanbul: Dolmabahçe Cafe 

Ömer Avni, Dolmabahçe Gazhane Cd. No:3, 34427 Beyoğlu/İstanbul, Türkiye

Dinner in Istanbul: Gulhane Sark Sofrasi

Alemdar, Alayköşkü Cd. No:22, 34110 Fatih/İstanbul, Türkiye

Incredible food and service. Perhaps my favorite meal on the trip. 

  • Ordered: Beef shesh kabab (41TL), chai tea, kikeli (220T)
6 Mar 15, 2024

Tirana, Albania

In Tirana: Doanesia Hotel and Spa

Rruga Kastriotet 5, Tiranë 1050, Albania

Most comfortable beds. Friendly front staff. 3 miles from the city center. Located across the street from the bus station. Taxis are easily accessible. 

  • Cost: $108

1. Flight from IST to TIA.

2. Tirana city center


Breakfast on Albania Air: meat and cheese sandwich, juice. 

Lunch: Lezet Turkish

Murat Toptani St, Tirana, Albania

  • Jufka with chicken (750ALL), caipirosca (500ALL)

Dinner in Doanesia: Hotel restaurant

Terrible service and food. 

7 March 16, 2024



In Shkoder: Hotel Tradita

Rruga Edith Durham 13, Shkodër 4001, Albania

The room was spacious. Included a balcony that overlooks the terrace.

  • Cost: $97 (included with tour)

1. Budva

2. Kotor

3. Shkoder

Lunch in Budva: Restaurant Adriatic

45 Mediteranska, Budva, Montenegro

Local spot. Cheap food. Few blocks away from the water. However, I would probably select a place overlooking the lake. 

  • Ordered: Rolled Chicken (€9,50), coke (€2,50)

Dinner in Shkoder: Country Club Bar & Grill

Rruga Kolë Idromeno, Shkodër, Albania

Mediocre food. Located in the middle of the promenade. 

8 Mar 17, 2024


North Macedonia

In Skopje: Hotel Premier

→ Josif Josifovski – Sveshtarot 1000, Skopje 1000, North Macedonia

A spacious hotel that includes a small living room area with two lounge sofas. 

  • Cost: €90 (included with tour)

1. Mesi Bridge

2. Rozafa Castle

3. Prizren

4. Pristina

5. Skopje

Lunch in Prizren: Restaurant Beska

→Sheshi Shadervanit nr.54, Prizren 20000

Inexpensive but delicious food. 

  • Ordered: Chicken kabab (€3), coca cola (€1,50). 

Dinner in Skopje: Pelister

→ Boulevard Macedonia, Skopje 1000, North Macedonia

High-end restaurant located in Macedonia Square. 

  • Ordered: Bolognese (MKD 277), skopsko draft beer (MKD 123)
9 Mar 18, 2024

Tirana, Albania

In Tirana: Doanesia Hotel and Spa

1. Macedonia Square

2. Ohrid

3. Elbasan Castle

Lunch in Ohrid: Kebab House Adana

4Q8X+MMW, Ohrid, Macedonia

Known for their juice kababs. 

  • Ordered: Chicken skewers (€3,00)

Dinner in Tirana: Doanesia Restaurant

10 Mar 19, 2024

Istanbul, Turkiye

In Istanbul: Mest Hotel

→ Rüstem Paşa, Çiçek Pazarı Sk. No:22, 34116 Fatih/İstanbul, Türkiye

Located right next to the spice bazaar. No vehicle entrance.  Incredible staff. Offers desserts and tea/coffee in the lobby. Upon checkout, gifted Turkish delights. 

  • Cost: $210

1. Basilica Cistern

Cistern used to distribute water from waterways and rain to the Great Palace and Topkapı Palace

  • Cost: 660t

2. Obelisk of theodosius

Ancient Egyptian obelisk of Pharaoh Thutmose III

3. Turkish and Islamic Arts Museum

  • Cost: €17

Dinner in Istanbul: Deraliye Ottoman Palace Cuisine

→ Alemdar Mahallesi Ticaret Hane Sokak Giriş Kat No 10, 34122, Türkiye

Absolutely delicious. Great 5-star service. Located in the Michelin Guide.

  • Ordered: Hummus (185t), beef kebab rested with coarse herbs (1120t), Adana Kebab(710t), katmer (420t), deraliye special cocktail (1100t)

Expenses for 10 Days:

Type Cost (Foreign) Cost (USD) Cost (PP)
Airfare to DBV   45,000 pts 270.60 271
Airfare SJJ to IST £67 85 85
Airfare IST to/from TIA €144 156 156
Airfare Home   45,000 pts 253.20 253
Hotel   1077 417
Transportation €15+302t 421 217
Private Guide €1980 2138 983
Food €190+3535t+400mkd+1250lek 308 149.50
Activities 660t+€92 118 118
Other Tours   328 109
Souvenir  €35+$56 94 94
  Total 5248.80 2852.50