Destination Award Finalist
Sustainable tourism was a perfect catalyst to develop a courageous project called The Peaks of the Balkans. Now hikers can explore the world’s newest transnational hiking experience in the remote and unspoilt mountainous regions of Albania, Kosovo and Montenegro. The 192-kilometre signposted Trail opens the doors to traditional local hospitality along the pathways.
The Trail was born of a passion to preserve the cultural, natural and spiritual heritage of these communities, linking them together to create a rare journey for both local inhabitants and for visitors.
The Trail has opened minds and borders. It is a tribute to the vision and energy of cooperating Governments, Municipalities, and local tourism organisations. Border police worked to formalize border crossings for easy access. Mountaineering associations and local hiking clubs trained professional Guides to ensure hikers are safe and can get the best out of their trek. Local communities and incoming tour operators are creating sustainable business ventures. A combined Steering Group continues to manage the project.
There is strong recognition of the sensitive balance between tourism activity with its benefits to local communities and its impacts on the environment and the ability to manage a flexible structure for environmental protection.