There are so many wonderful reasons that trekking the Peaks of the Balkans is an unforgettable experience. While the jaw-dropping mountain scenery is certainly a highlight, this trek also offers rich cultural experiences that rival those in the outdoors. Much of this culture can be found in the welcoming accommodation along the route.
Most accommodation on the Peaks of the Balkans can be found in family-run guesthouses, also called Bujtina. These range from upscale establishments that feel like hotels to more rustic dormitory-style lodging. There are options to suit every travel style and budget.
To help you sort through all of your choices we’ve created this Peaks of the Balkans Accommodation Guide. The guide covers all of the basics, including making reservations and typical costs, as well as our recommendations for the best places to stay at each of the traditional stopping points along the route.
Let’s get started.
Peaks of the Balkans Accommodation Guide
- Should I Reserve My Accommodation in Advance?
- Peaks of the Balkans Accommodation Cost
- Peaks of the Balkans Accommodation Directory
Should I Reserve My Accommodation in Advance?
The simplest answer to this question is yes, you should reserve your Peaks of the Balkans accommodation in advance. The trail mainly visits very small villages, meaning that accommodation options can be quite limited. This can be problematic in the peak season when a large number of hikers are passing through each day.
Therefore, if you plan on hiking the Peaks of the Balkans between June through September, you should try as much as possible to reserve your accommodation ahead of time.
In terms of how far in advance to book, we generally recommend reserving your accommodation between 1-3 months in advance for walks during the summer season. For those walking outside of the peak time, you can get away with only a few weeks in advance and even have the possibility of finding a bed without a reservation.
With the exception of a few accommodations that offer online booking, you’ll need to email most guesthouses in order to request a reservation.
As a general rule, accommodation along the Peaks of the Balkans is quite affordable. In some of the larger towns, you’ll find options that range from more expensive to budget-friendly, but in smaller villages you might just find mid-range options. Of course, those wanting to stick to a strict budget can always camp to save money.
Prices can vary a bit from place to place, and expect accommodation costs to increase during summer months when the area is filled with visitors. Generally speaking, here’s what you can expect to pay for accommodation along the Peaks of the Balkans:
- Private room in an upscale guesthouse/hotel: €55 (per person/per night)
- Shared room in a standard guesthouse: €40 (per person/per night)
Breakfast is often included in the price of accommodation, with the option to pay extra for dinner and/or a packed lunch (usually €5 per person).
In the accommodation directory below we’ve provided our recommendations for the best places to stay at all of the common stopping points along the Peaks of the Balkans.
Peaks of the Balkans Accommodation Directory
Use the directory below to help find your perfect accommodation on the Peaks of the Balkans. We’ve included key details and descriptions for our top choices as well as links to help you book your stay.
We’ve organized our accommodation list to follow the traditional counterclockwise direction on the Peaks of the Balkans, starting in Theth. You can also reference the interactive map to get an overview of all of our accommodation recommendations.
Top Pick: Bujtina Tinari
This lovely guesthouse is located at the far end of the valley, with views of the mountains and the quaint village church. Guesthouse Tinari provides a warm welcome and the friendly hosts make sure you’re well cared for. The rooms are spotlessly clean and recently upgraded, and the breakfast is excellent.
Recommended: Guesthouse “Gjin Thana”
Set in a beautiful stone building, Gjin Thana provides a tranquil and inviting atmosphere. The hosts speak excellent English and are very attentive and helpful. Breakfast is delicious and plentiful, and the location is convenient for getting to the trail.
Recommended: Shpella Guesthouse
Shpella Guesthouse is set on a scenic hilltop near the historic Kula, or fortified tower. While the amenities are a bit basic, you can expect to find clean and comfortable rooms and warm hospitality. The location is a bit further from the trail, but the views and atmosphere more than make up for it.
Top Pick: Guesthouse Mehmeti
From the lovingly prepared meals to the clean and spacious rooms, everything is top-notch at this traditional guesthouse. Mehmeti is located at the far end of the Valbona Valley, meaning you’ll walk further to get there but you’ll start closer to the trail the following morning. Furnished with an electric kettle, desk, and a private bathroom, the accommodations are a step up from the average guesthouse.
Recommended: Guesthouse Jezerca
Guesthouse Jezerca is conveniently located close to the trail and offers a variety of accommodation options. Budget travelers will appreciate the affordable dormitories and spacious camping area, while those seeking a bit of luxury can opt for one of the newly-constructed villas. The great food and friendly service really make this guesthouse stand out.
Recommended: Rosi Guesthouse
If you don’t mind detouring a bit off the main road, Rosi Guesthouse will certainly reward your efforts. You’ll need to hike up about 2km to reach Rosi, but the remote location makes this guesthouse feel extra peaceful and close to nature. The welcoming hosts serve up incredible meals using locally-sourced ingredients, including honey from their own bees.
Top Pick: Guesthouse Kujtim Gocaj
There are so many reasons why we recommend this guesthouse. It is certainly rustic, but still offers modern amenities like wifi, a hot shower, and cold drinks. Plus, the hosts couldn’t be more genuine and welcoming to guests. The garden has beautiful views and is the perfect place to enjoy a drink or a meal.
Recommended: Guesthouse Husen Syla
Husen Syla offers an authentic guesthouse experience at a reasonable price. The owner will meet you at the bottom of the trail and drive you in his jeep to save you the final walk to the house. One of the family members speaks very good English and is willing to help you with anything you may need.
Top Pick: Bujtina Leonard
This is one of the first guesthouses you’ll see upon entering Dobërdol, and it enjoys a scenic perch on the edge of the stream. As with all accommodations in the area, the facilities are basic (dormitories, squat toilets), but Leonard is a very comfortable place to say nonetheless. There is a wonderful and cozy common building, along with a fire ring, wifi, and hot showers.
Recommended: Guesthouse Bashkimi
This is a very clean and welcoming accommodation located at the top of the hill in Dobërdol. The beds are a bit uncomfortable and the dorms a bit crowded, but Bashkimi has plenty of redeeming qualities. These include delicious food, great views, and friendly service.
Recommended: Bilbil Vatnika Guesthouse
This is another great accommodation option in Dobërdol. The hosts are so kind and go above and beyond to make guests feel at home. The property has a waterfall with a natural pool- the perfect place to cool off after a long day on the trail!
Top Pick: Chalet Rrusta
This recently-updated guesthouse offers sparkling facilities, cozy rooms, and nice amenities. The helpful hosts speak German and French, although not much English. Meals are hearty, fresh, and delicious. Chalet Rrusta has magical mountain views in every direction, which contribute to the tranquil atmosphere.
Recommended: Kulla Guesthouse
Although the traditional stone building has plenty of rustic charm on the outside, the interior of Kulla Guesthouse is fresh and modern. All of the rooms are private, and they range in size to accommodate groups of 1-5 people. There are plenty of nice outdoor spaces for relaxing and eating.
Recommended: Bujtina Lojza
Hikers walking counterclockwise will encounter Bujtina Lojza about 30 minutes before reaching Milishevc. It’s a great option if you’re looking to end your day a bit earlier, or if you’re just looking to unwind in a beautiful place. The accommodation is rustic (no wifi, shared bathrooms), but the hospitality is top-notch.
Rekë e Allagës
Top Pick: Bujtina Ariu
This lovely guesthouse consistently gets great reviews for its clean, cozy rooms and friendly service. However, the food is what really sets it above the rest. Meals are hearty, delicious, and include a variety of local delicacies. Guesthouse Ariu serves up some of the best food on the Peaks of the Balkans.
Recommended: Pushimorja Hajla
You’ll need to walk an additional 20-30 minutes uphill to reach this accommodation, but you won’t be disappointed once you get there. Pushimorja Hajla offers lodging either in the well-appointed main guesthouse or in one of their cozy cabins. The remote location offers a beautiful close-to-nature experience and the hosts couldn’t be nicer.
Top Pick: Bujtina Shqiponja
This is one of the nicest guesthouses on the entire Peaks of the Balkans. The hosts are so kind, professional, and helpful. The facilities are clean and modern, and the food is absolutely delicious. The guesthouse is surrounded by a lovely garden and idyllic pastoral scenery.
Recommended: Bujtina Kaçaku
This newly-renovated guesthouse offers clean and comfortable accommodations in Drelaj. It is situated in a quiet and peaceful area with very nice views in every direction. The hosts provide great service.
Top Pick: Hotel Te Liqeni
If you want to press on to Leqinat instead of stopping in Drelaj, you’ll have a warm welcome awaiting you at Hotel Te Liqeni. Accommodation is provided in family rooms and cabins. The restaurant serves up delicious traditional food and the views are wonderful.
Top Pick: Triangle Woodhouse
Triangle Woodhouse is a consistent favorite amongst Peaks of the Balkans hikers. The host is incredibly friendly and knowledgeable about the area, providing guests with a memorable experience. Meals are plentiful, unique, and very tasty. The clean and comfortable accommodations are also top notch.
Recommended: Pine Trees Lodge
This beautiful guesthouse is one of the first you’ll encounter on your way into Babino Polje. The wooden building is very rustic and cozy, and the entire place is perfect for those wanting to feel close to nature. Rooms are pretty basic and a bit small, but still quite nice. The owners are kind and helpful.
Recommended: Samel’s Cottage
This accommodation is located just under an hour past Babino Polje on the way to Plav. Because Samel’s Cottage sits high above the valley, it has sweeping vistas of the surrounding mountains. The accommodations are quite rustic (warm shower, no wifi, solar electricity), but that only adds to the peaceful and relaxing ambiance. Taking in the sunset from the lovely terrace is a memorable experience.
Top Pick: Ema Guesthouse
This excellent guesthouse offers a variety of rooms and apartments, many with views of Lake Plav. It is located close to shops and restaurants, and is easily accessible from the POB trail. The owners are attentive and go out of their way to make sure guests are taken care of. There’s an optional breakfast available, and the large terrace is a perfect place to relax after a long day of walking.
Recommended: Visitor Yard
Located right on the lake, this lovely guesthouse is a great option in Plav. Although it is a bit further from the city center and the trail, the peaceful setting makes up for the extra walking. The owners provide a very warm welcome and excellent service throughout your stay. Rooms are very clean and homey.
Recommended: Apartmani Ambiente
Ambiente offers a variety of rooms and apartments, many with balconies overlooking the city and the river. It is conveniently located in central Plav, very close to the POB route. The rooms are basic, but they have everything you need to rest and recharge. The breakfast is quite good, especially if you’re able to enjoy it on the riverside terrace.
Top Pick: Guesthouse Vucetaj
This is a quiet and relaxing guesthouse that boasts some of the best views of the Ropojana Valley. Accommodation is provided in very clean and well-appointed cabins. The meals feature generous portions and garden-fresh ingredients. Guesthouse Vucetaj is simply a lovely place to spend a night.
Recommended: Guesthouse Dedushi
Guesthouse Dedushi is a classic stop on the Peaks of the Balkans, as it is recommended in many of the guidebooks. Guests can expect a typical guesthouse experience, with basic facilities and shared bathrooms. The hosts are very friendly and welcoming.
Recommended: Riverside Guesthouse
Hikers love Riverside Guesthouse for its convenient location, lovely outdoor sitting area, and excellent service. There are rooms to accommodate groups of all sizes, including private apartments and bungalows. The food is fantastic, featuring vegetables from the garden and local cheeses.
Have a Great Trip!
Wherever you choose to stay on your Peaks of the Balkans trek, you really can’t go wrong with any of the accommodations we’ve recommended in this post. The hospitality in this part of the world is truly wonderful, and sure to be a highlight of your trip. Be sure to leave questions or share about your experience in the comments below. Happy trails!