If you think that life’s simple in North Macedonia, you really should spend a few hours in neighbouring Albania, an easy thing to do if you’ve got a car and a desire to visit a country that to this remains a mystery to most Europeans. Reachable via one of two border crossings on either side of Lake Ohrid, the Albanian side of the water offers several interesting things to see, including the marvellous Byzantine church in the small village of Lin, which dates from the 6th century and that boats a gorgeous mosaic floor, and the small lakeside city of Pogradec, where you might even choose to stay in for a night or two thanks to its good quality and ridiculously cheap hotels. In the Balkans the rule tends to be that the more things are broken the friendlier the locals tend to be, a rule Albania, one of the poorest countries in Europe, proves beyond any shadow of a doubt. There are no formalities at the border beyond showing your passport, and once you’re in you’ll be glad you decided to come. The Albanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs website provides information for anyone who’s not sure if they can visit without a visa. Recommended if you have the time is to enter at one border crossing and leave at the other.