Not to lecture you on native Albanian vocabulary, but Futbolli, Basketboll, Bejsbolli and volejboll are some popular team sports in Albania. Pretty straightforward from an English perspective, Albanian sports mostly involve football, basketball, baseball and volleyball. While football is the country’s most popular men’s sport, volleyball is widely recognized among women.

Other popular sports you’ll find in the streets of Albania include weightlifting, tennis, swimming, athletics, and chess. While there aren’t many famous Albanian athletes, most Albanian talents are exploring several opportunities to make waves in many European countries where sports are greatly celebrated. 

Briefly, let’s explore different sports you can enjoy in Albania.

Football

The most well-known Sport in Albania is Football (soccer). While the country is currently ranked 66th by FIFA, they recorded their significant win against San Marino in September 2022.

The Albanian national soccer team consists of native Albanians as well as players from Kosovo. Some popular Albanian football players include Armando Broja, Elseid Hysaj, Thomas Strakosha, Rey Manaj and more. Although Albania has not fared too well competing with other European countries like France, Spain, etc., they’re constantly grooming talents with its Super League. 

Basketball

Men’s basketball is also famous in Albania, especially in big cities such as Tirana. The Albania Basketball league (ABL) was founded in 1946 and has since won over ten tournaments. The men’s team recorded a significant win at the 2006 Eurobasket tournament. 

Some notable Albanian basketball players include Ermal Kuqo, DJ Moore, Elvisi Dusha, Ferdi Bedini and more. Likewise, some popular Albanian teams include Tirana, Apolonia, Partizani etc. 

Volleyballs

Volleyball in Albania is more than just fun in the sun on the sandy beaches of the Durr√ęs coastline. Well, it may have started out that way, but over the last few decades, the game has grown into a full-fledged sport that is now a member of the Balkan Volleyball Association (BVA).

The Albanian Volleyball League currently hosts 7 clubs in the first division and 2 clubs in the second division. 

Some popular Albanian volleyball players include Anton Qafarena, Gazmend Husaj, Erblira Bici, Klonarda etc. It also features teams such as Tirana, Tuerta, Elbasani etc.

Traditional sports

Every country has various distinct sports to consider as a way of uniting different people from different backgrounds and cultures. Albania is no exception, as it has its own traditional forms of sports events rooted in its culture and tradition. Some of them include weightlifting, mini-golfing, hiking, table tennis and even fishing.

Weightlifting

Widely popular among European countries, weightlifting in Albania has grown to produce many outstanding weightlifters, such as Briken Calja, Evagjia Veli, Theoharis Trasha, Daniel Godelli and more.

The country has won several medals, such as gold, silver and bronze, at the European and World weightlifting championships. They are also among the top-performing teams at the Mediterranean Competitions, with over 20 medals.

Mini-Golfing

As its name implies, mini-golfing in Albania involves the usual golf but on a much smaller scale. It also reflects the standard features of regular golf, such as holes, flags, terrain obstacles, and much more.

The game is played among people of all age groups in the country. It was opened in late 2018 and has since been a great outdoor activity for both young and old. Dajti Mountain is one notable mini-golf pitch in Albania.

Beyond all these, it’s a paradise for water sports, credit to the various coastlines, as well as the plentiful rivers and reservoirs.

Wrapping up

From European to Mediterranean sports, Albania offers a host of widely known sports, including football, basketball and more. Although the country is still far from perfect regarding international competitions, its diverse landscape and great infrastructure pave the way for several traditional sports.