Albania-Macedonia border crossing at Tushemisht

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Sveti Naum / Tushemisht, Tushemisht, Albania

Albania-Macedonia border crossing at Tushemisht Reviews

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Crossing between Macedonia and Albania at Tushemisht Feb 01, 2017
We crossed between Macedonia and Albania at the Sveti Naum / Tushemisht border crossing when we visited Albania as a day trip from Ohrid in March 2012.

This border crossing is located on the southern shores of Lake Ohrid, about 25km from the town of Ohrid.

We crossed the border in a taxi that we had hired in Ohrid, with a Macedonian taxi driver and an Albanian-speaking guide. In fact, it wasn't an official taxi. We had tried to hire an official taxi, but the driver didn't have the necessary paperwork (a green card?) to drive the vehicle over the border into Albania. So, instead, we used the car of his friend (the Albanian-speaking guide) who did have the necessary paperwork.

There was very little traffic on the road that morning and ours was the only vehicle crossing the border at that time. We handed over our passports at the Macedonian side of the border, the border guards checked out the vehicle and glanced through the window to see that we matched the photos in our passports, and within a couple of minutes we were driving along the few hundred metres of no-mans-land before reaching the Albanian border.

We handed our passports over again and a similar procedure was carried out. The guards wanted to check the boot of the car, so our driver opened it up to let them see. The guards again checked our faces against our passport photos through the car window, but didn't examine our bags.

We were asked if we wanted Albanian entry stamps in our passports. We said yes, and our passports were stamped, but the stamp was a disappointingly faint one with the date and the word "Tushemisht" just about distinguishable. There was no charge for entering the country, although our driver intimated that he had had to slip some cash to the border guards when he handed over his passport and vehicle documents in order to facilitate an easier crossing. I'm not sure if he was being serious or not.

The whole border crossing took no more than 5 minutes and we were soon on our way to Tushemisht, the first village on the Albanian side of the border. It would be possible to walk from the border to Tushemisht in around 10 minutes.

We had contemplated undertaking this trip (from Ohrid to Pogradec) via public transport, but this would have been very difficult, especially at the time of year we were travelling. The bus from Ohrid to Sveti Naum Monastery was infrequent, and from there we would have had to walk to the border and then walk from the border to Tushemisht (there were no taxis waiting on the Albanian side of the border as our guidebook suggested there would be. Perhaps they are there in summer?). Even having reached Tushemisht, it would have been difficult to continue our journey to Pogradec – we didn't see any taxis or furgons heading that way. Perhaps the traffic heading that way is heavier in the busier summer months.

We were thankful that we had hired the taxi for the day. The journey from Ohrid to Tushemisht to Pogradec to Korce...and then back to Ohrid (via Sveti Naum Monastery) would have been nigh on impossible with public transport.
Tushemisht, near the Albania-Maced…
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