Albania is a country in South-Eastern Europe, in the West of the Balkan Peninsula, between the geographical coordinates: 39 16' latitude and 42 39' longitude. Albania is almost midway between Equator and the North Pole, and covers a surface of 28.748 km2.
The overall length of the borderline of the Republic of Albania is 1094 km; out of which 657 km is land-border, 316 km is sea-border, 48 km is river-border and 73 km lake-border.
The Republic of Albania, on the North borders with Montenegro, on North-East with Kosova, on the East with Macedonia, and in the South and South-East with Greece. On the West, Albania is washed by the Adriatic and Ionian seas. The average altitude is 708 m, i.e. two times higher than that of Europe. Albania is included in the humid sub-tropical zone of the Northern Hemisphere, and it belongs to the Mediterranean climatic zone. Chromium, ferro-nickel, copper, coal, oil and gas are among the most important sub-soil minerals found in Albania.
Albania has a mild, Mediterranean climate. Many visitors will find that it never gets cold in the lowlands. The Ionian Cost, in particular, is very clement; with aver age winter temperatures of 8-10 °C (46-50F). The country enjoys a good deal of sunny weather, with an average of around 300 sunny days each year. Most of Albania's annual rainfall occurs between late autumn and early spring; outside of the mountainous areas, it is unusual for it to rain in summer.
The country has many rivers which originate in the high mountains and pass through steep gorges before reaching the plain and making their way to the sea. Most of the main rivers have been extensively managed, usually to generate hydro-electricity.
In Albania there are also a number of lakes. Lake Shkodra is the largest lake in the Balkans and straddles the border between Albania and Montenegro. Thousands of cormorants winter on this lake each year. It is relatively shallow and is fed by many different rivers as well as by springs, making it quite varied in its aquatic life, with various species of carp and trout in its waters.
In the heart of the Mediterranean, on the Adriatic and Ionian Seas, Albania is fast becoming one of the world's most interesting getaways. Still relatively unspoiled by globalization, tourists will notice an inspiring mixture of civilizations and cultures - making this European country truly unique.