It’s snowing all around the Balkans, so now is the ideal chance to introduce you to the most popular ski centres in case you plan to spend your winter holidays in this lovely area, made for everything!
Although Albania is not popular as a ski destination, the terrain dictates the rules. Numerous Albanian mountains, especially in the north of the country, made conditions to turn some parts into ski slopes so at least the local visitors can enjoy it.
The most popular ski resort in Albania is Bigëll – Dardhë, located in Korce, Albania. This small ski centre is great for skiing and snowboarding and offers 1.3 km of slopes and 2 lifts. The elevation is not that high, so the ski centre is located at 1585 m, while the ski slopes and lifts go up to 1663 m.
Bosnia & Herzegovina
Amongst the Western Balkans countries and territories, Bosnia & Herzegovina probably offers the best skiing conditions, taking in mind it used to have a winter Olympic Centre back in 1984, at the slopes of Jahorina mountain.
The first documents mentioning skiing on Jahorina mountain date from the late 19th century, from the Austro-Hungarian rule. Jahorina mountain is part of the Dinaric Alps and is located 15 km from the municipality of Pale and 30 km from the Sarajevo International Airport. The ski resort is located at elevations between 1,300 and 1,916 meters, with over 25 km of ski slopes and modern facilities.
Kosovo is becoming more and more popular for ski sports, not only skiing but also ski touring, snowshoeing and similar. The biggest ski centre in Kosovo is Brezovica, located on the slopes of the Sharr Mountain at an altitude of 2212 m.
Brezovica ski resort was established back in 1954. This resort offers 15 km of ski slopes and 5 ski lifts. Most of the visitors come from Albania.
Similar to the rest of the Balkans, Montenegro’s terrain is covered in hills and mountains. It is one of the global countries with the highest percentage of mountainous terrain in its geography, as these cover more than 80% of the Montenegrin surface.
Even if it’s hilly and beautiful, ski sports are not that developed, so Montenegro offers only a few locations with ski centres that are actively used. We do hope that in the future period, eastern Montenegro will activate its resources and open new spots for winter tourism development.
The most popular ski resorts at the moment are located in Kolasin. Kolasin is a small town in north-east Montenegro and from there you have a 15 min car ride to reach the first station – Kolasin 1450. The next is Kolasin 1600. Both got their name from the elevation on which are located. Kolasin 1600 is equipped with a six-seated detachable chair lift. The K7 detachable cable car was opened in February 2022, and it connects the two ski centres Kolašin 1600 and Kolašin 1450 and their accompanying network of ski slopes. These 2 ski centres have a total of 45 km of ski slopes, making this ski area one of the biggest in the region.
Resort Mavrovo is located in the National Park Mavrovo and is one of the first established ski resorts and a popular summer and winter destination in North Macedonia.
Mavrovo is located at the foot of mountain Bistra, at an altitude of 1,300m to 1,900m, with a local microclimate which has consistently delivered accumulated snowfall. Mavrovo Resort offers a total length of 5.000 m of ski slopes and it is the most popular spot for Alpine skiing as a major priority of this resort. Mavrovo offers night skiing, nordic skiing, and ski touring.
Kopaonik is the largest mountain range in Serbia that has a subalpine climate and is rightfully known as the Sun Mountain with almost 200 sunny days a year. Kopaonik became a national park in 1981 and is the largest and best-known Serbian ski centre.
The ski slopes are located between 1650 m and 2017 m altitude with a network of 24 ski-lifts connected in one system and 2 lifts for children, a total of 55 km in length. Additionally, there is a 12 km slope for Nordic skiing and marked slopes of 3,5 and 10 km in length. It is a hotspot for VIPs from the Balkans, as well as a favourite spot for wellness travellers.
Have you been skiing in the Western Balkans? If yes, we would be happy to hear your comments below!