Bunker Trails


Bunker Trails is a hiking and backpacking trail network in Albania. The Bunker Trails project seeks to foster a vibrant outdoors community, increase availability of resources for outdoor enthusiasts, and build governmental awareness for enviornmental initiatives.


The Bunker Trails Project

Puzzle IconThe Bunker Trails Project is a modular undertaking comprised of three major components. The first is the creation of an active outdoors community within Albania. The second is the acquisition, production, and publication of useful maps and other information for those interested in outdoor recreation. The final component seeks to increase government accountability for the nation's environment. Please see the frequently asked questions sections for more information about the goals and objectives of the project.

Contact and Mailing Lists

Bunker Trails Website - webmaster@bunkertrails.org

If you encounter any technical issues or have any comments or suggestions regarding the website, please direct them to webmaster@bunkertrails.org.

Outdoor Ambassadors - outdoorambassadors@bunkertrails.org

Outdoor Ambassadors is an initiative that seeks to encourage youth interest in the environment, and create a vibrant outdoors community in Albania. If you are interested in learning more about Outdoor Ambassadors, please visit http://www.bunkertrails.org/outdoorambassadors.

If you have any questions relating to Outdoor Ambassadors, please direct them to outdoorambassadors@bunkertrails.org.

Frequently Asked Questions

1 Where did the name "Bunker Trails" originate?

Photo of Albania's BunkersThe name was taken from a project designed by a Peace Corps Volunteer that created a trail linking several of Albania's famous mushroom-shape bunkers. While hiking around the country, we encountered hundreds of these bunkers in seemingly obscure locations. Their inescapable presence inspired the name of the project.

2 Bunkers, eh?

The former political regime in Albania, led by the dictator, Enver Hoxha, thought it prudent to be prepared for "foreign invaders". In this spirit, thousands of bunkers were built throughout the country. At the time of their installation, there was one bunker for every four able-bodied Albanian men. The architects of these innovative works were made to personally attest to the quality of their designs by remaining inside a prototype while it was shelled. Apparently, there was no loss of life. The exceedingly solid construction of the bunkers ensures that hikers can find their concrete forms littered across the countryside of Albania even today. While many consider them eyesores and memories of a difficult past, they are, nonetheless, unique.

3 What is the purpose of this website and project?

As outlined above, this project has three primary objectives.

  1. Emergence of a responsible outdoors community in Albania. This includes the creation of a nationwise network of youth clubs, entitled "Outdoor Ambassadors".
  2. Acquisition, production, and publication of materials that increase the general accessibility of Albania's outdoor enviornment. These maps and other materials are published on the Bunker Trails website, in the map library. The website also provides a wiki that enables Albanian experts, tourists, and hikers to share information.
  3. Increased awareness and responsibility on the part of the government for the environment.

If you are interested in reading more about the project, please review our project proposal.

4 How can I get involved?

We welcome those who are interested in contributing to the project. We are currently focused on the first two components of the project, resource acquisition, development, and publication (1) and the creation of an outdoor community in Albania (2). If you are interested in the first component, please e-mail resource-development@bunkertrails.org. If your interests lie in the second area, please read more about the Outdoor Ambassadors program or contact outdoorambassadors@bunkertrails.org.

5 What are your data sources?

We use primary and secondary data from a variety of sources. These include USAID Albania, Jonathan de Ferranti, GPS data that we collect, and many others. If you are looking for more information about our data sources, please consult the Wiki. We strive to provide raw data access whenever possible.

http://www.bunkertrails.org | webmaster@bunkertrails.org