What is the longest river in Albania?

Albania, often considered a hidden and undiscovered treasure in Europe, expected to experience a significant tourism boom in the coming years, apart from its stunning coastline and rich historical heritage, it has one majestic queen that passes through it—the magical and powerful river Drin (alb. Drini).


Deja’s Ford (Vau and Dejes Hydropower Plant), Drin River, Photo: Albinfo, CC BY-SA 4.0


Stretching across three countries, the Drin River separates into two parts, white and black. The northern tributary, White Drin comes from Kosovo and continues through Albania, while its southern tributary, the Black Drin, comes from Ohrid Lake in Macedonia. They eventually meet in Albania in the city of Kukës. After extending for 285 kilometers, Drin, the longest river in Albania, continues her journey through the Albanian Alps towards the Adriatic Sea and Bojana River.


The meeting point of Drin and Bojana River is right under the Rozafa Castle in Shkodër and the view is just magical!


Confluence of Drin to Bojana River, Photo: Adria.fun


Somewhere halfway from Kukes towards Bojana, Drin becomes a part of the magical lake Komani, the artificial reservoir surrounded by densely wooded hills, vertical slopes, deep gorges, and a narrow valley. Exploring Lake Komani by boat cruise offers a unique opportunity to witness the true beauty of the Drin River. 


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Lake Komani, Photo: Johnny Africa, Unsplash


In addition to its role as a habitat for diverse flora and fauna, the Drin River holds significant economic importance for Albania. Hosting three hydroelectric power stations, it contributes substantially to the nation’s energy needs. In fact, the Drin River is a real powerhouse, generating over 70% of Albania’s electricity, highlighting its crucial role in the country’s energy infrastructure and economic sustainability.


But as the TV commercials would say, “and that’s not all”, the Drin River is a paradise both for swimming and rafting, inviting everyone seeking refreshment.




Peace, love and music! ☮️

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