Albania is situated on the eastern shore of the Adriatic Sea, with Montenegro and Serbia to the north, Macedonia to the east, and Greece to the south. Albania is a parliamentary democracy with a transition economy. The Albanian capital, Tirana, is home to 421,286 of the country's 2,831,741 people. Free-market reforms have opened the country to foreign investment, especially in the development of energy and transportation infrastructure. Students looking for a truly unique country for educational opportunities at the level of higher education will find Albania to be a diverse and ideal choice. The country is located in Southeastern Europe with Macedonia to the east, Greece to the South, and Serbia, Montenegro, and the Adriatic Sea also forming its borders. It is also near Italy, across the Strait of Otranto. The country's capital is Tirana and most locals speak Albanian.
The country has a rich history and sits in one of the most diverse areas of the world. It is a safe country to travel to and as such some students have attended colleges and universities here. However, this is not necessary a common thing to do. The country does not have a strong economy right now, but it does have a democracy that is fairly strong and developed. About 2.8 million people live in Albania, with about 421,000 of them living in Tirana.
The climate of Albania ranges from one area to the next. In the lowlands, a moderate Mediterranean climate is present. This affords the country with mild winters and warm summers. The highlands have a more continental climate with more seasonal differences including colder winters with some snow. Throughout the year, though, precipitation is heavy and this can play a role in the overall activities individuals can participate in here.
The country has a strong culture which students are likely to participate in while living here. The strong history here is also a key component and it is evident on everything from the country's architecture to the religious elements present. The countryside are remote and lush. They make for the ideal opportunity for the individual to explore the natural beauty of this area. However, in the larger cities, every modern amenity is available including access to the Internet.
The country uses lek as its currency. Keep in mind it is not a part of the European Union and euros are not accepted here. However, ATMs and credit cards are widely accepted. Students can also convert funds through financial institutions for direct payments.