The name Dumrea is derived from “duam re” – we want clouds, reflecting the local dialect’s prayer for rain. While the official etymology remains unconfirmed, local stories enhance the roots of this expression, especially considering the area’s history of rain scarcity.
Belsh is a renowned destination in the center of Albania, situated on the Dumrea Plateau between the Shkumbin River to the northwest and the Devoll River to the east. Functioning as the epicenter, Belsh plays a significant role in the cultural and historical aspects of the region since the Early Bronze Age. Archaeological excavations reveal the town’s influence on Illyrian urbanization and its crucial role in cultural and economic development during ancient times.
Natural Beauty and Historical Significance:
Before the Second World War, Dumrea boasted oak forests and dense vegetation, transforming over the years due to urbanization needs. Today, Belsh and Dumrea are vital areas for agriculture and livestock breeding, preserving their archaeological treasures and values along the former Via Egnatia road.
The municipality of Belsh covers an area of 196.44 km2 and includes five administrative units: Belsh, Grekan, Kajan, Fierzë, and Rrasë. Comprising 30 villages, the municipality is predominantly rural, with a focus on agriculture and livestock. With a population of 32,389 inhabitants, Belsh maintains a favorable geographical position, being close to Elbasan, Lushnja, and Berat.
The population of Belsh municipality is primarily rural, with 69.8% aged 15-65, 10.6% over 65, and 19.6% under 15. The gender ratio is almost equal, with 50.4% female and 49.6% male. The majority of the population is concentrated in the Belsh administrative unit.
Belshi aspires to be a center for agricultural development and tourism, focusing on sustainability, environmental respect, and leveraging its unique feature – 84 lakes. The municipality aims to transform into a hub for the production of agricultural and livestock products, preserving its natural and landscape environment.
Belsh is easily accessible from Berat, being just a few kilometers away. A normal vehicle suffices for a comfortable journey, making it a convenient and delightful day trip or longer stay for those exploring the beauty and history of this Albanian gem.
Outdoor Activities in Belsh
Explore the beauty of Belsh through various outdoor activities that cater to both adventure enthusiasts and those seeking leisurely walks. From cycling trails to serene lakes, Belsh offers a diverse range of experiences.
Cycling is a popular outdoor activity, combining sport, recreation, and transportation. In Belsh, cycling is not just a mode of transport but an exciting way to explore the surroundings. The city provides designated cycling trails, making it an enjoyable experience for both residents and visitors. Check our map for cycling routes and embark on a journey through the scenic landscapes.
Immerse yourself in nature with hiking, a recreational activity that promotes physical fitness and well-being. Belsh offers ideal terrain for hiking, making it a natural exercise for all fitness levels. Whether you prefer a leisurely stroll or a more challenging hillside hike, the picturesque landscapes around Belsh are perfect for discovering the beauty of the region.
Belsh is surrounded by a group of enchanting lakes, including Ulza, Katundit, Miloshit, Kashaj, Bicit, and Komnecit. Located on the east side, these lakes are a short drive from Belsh, offering a peaceful retreat. Take a leisurely walk around the scenic, round-shaped lakes, explore local food cuisine, try fishing activities, and visit local farms. The tranquil nature and charming villages create a memorable experience for every visitor.
Stroll to the Second Lake of Belsh
Discover the Ujëmbledhësi i Belsh-Shtërmen, also known as the second lake of Belsh. Located northeast of the city, it’s a quick drive or a pleasant walk from the city center. Just 1.4 km away from the heart of Belsh, this lake provides a refreshing stop on your journey. The surrounding farmlands and small villages offer a glimpse into the local culture, making it a delightful experience before you reach the bustling city center.