Orthodox Cathedral of St. Dimitrius in Berat

Orthodox Cathedral of St. Dimitrius in Berat

400 283 Visit Berat

In the heart of Berat, near the new cathedral, once stood the old cathedral with the same name, dedicated to St. Dimitri. This basilica, with three naves, was built in the mid-19th century, immediately after the earthquake of 1851, when about 400 people lost their lives. Following this tragedy, the people of Berat, regardless of their faith, prayed to St. Dimitri for protection from earthquakes. After numerous prayers through a votive offering, it was decided to build a church in honor of this saint, a church that would bear his name.

The church, resembling a basilica with many annexes, a bell tower, and a minaret, was constructed with elements brought from Apollonia, including a bust of a man from the 1st-2nd century AD. This sculpture from Apollonia was placed on the wall of the Church of St. Dimitri. In 1922, the church was declared a cathedral but was later destroyed during the communist period, replaced by the party committee.

After the early years of communism, with the restoration of religious freedom, the Orthodox Church in Albania received divine blessings under the guidance of Archbishop Anastas Janullatos. Throughout the country, including Berat, damaged churches, including the Cathedral of St. Dimitri, were rebuilt under his care.

Construction of the new cathedral began in 1994 but faced a hiatus of nearly 10 years due to the tumultuous events of 1997. In 2002, construction resumed under a different firm and the supervision of Metropolitan Ignatius of Berat. The new Cathedral of St. Dimitri was completed in 2008 and was consecrated on April 12, 2009.

The church has undergone further enhancements, including the installation of a magnificent wooden iconostasis in 2010 and the addition of an electronic bell system in 2016. The dedication and contributions of believers, both locally and internationally, have played a crucial role in beautifying and preserving this historical and spiritually significant cathedral.


**Visitor Information for the Orthodox Cathedral of St. Dimitri:**

– **Opening Hours:** 09:00 – 19:00

– **Entrance Fee:** Free (Donations are welcomed)

– **Photography:** Please refrain from taking photos of individuals during prayer.

– **Respect:** Kindly adhere to all rules and regulations.

Berat’s Orthodox Cathedral of St. Dimitri welcomes visitors to experience its rich history and architectural beauty while respecting the sacred atmosphere within.

Visitor Information:

Opening Hours:

  • Operating Hours: 08:30 – 18:00; No entrance fee.

Visitors can spend about 15 minutes
no facilities
Vehicles can reach close to the spot
Cathderal   is  suitable for people with disabilities.