Belsh map

About Belsh

Dumre - Toponym

The name Dumrea is a combination of two words duam and re – we want clowds – meaning we are in need of rain. This stands as an expression in the dialectic of middle Albania that people use to pray about rainy periods. However, the etymology of the word Dumrea has not been officially confirmed. When we consider the local stories of the area about the absence of rain, the root of this etymology becomes even more complete.

belsh city center
belsh city center

City of Belsh

One of the most known destinations in Albania, in the center of the country, is Pllaja e Dumresë (Dumrea Plateau or Dumrea). This area of Albania is located between the river Shkumbin in the north-west, and the river Devoll in the east. These two rivers make also its natural borders.

Belsh is the center of the area, and describing Dumrea is the same as talking about Belsh.

We find Belsh in the northwest part of Dumrea and is the first stop for all who go to visit Dumrea. The city of Belsh has shown significant role in the cultural and historical aspect from the ancient ages – namely since the Early Bronze Age. This is determined by the excavations conducted by archeologists throughout the years. The geographical location, alongside the interurban road that connects north with south, once known as Via Egnatia, makes Belsh suitable for economic interactions. Artifacts and ceramics found in the archeological sites confirm about the development of the first proto-urban sites of the Illyrians. Information shows that during the ancient times, the region has played a significant role in the development of culture and economy of the population.

Belsh and the findings that are housed around it tell us about the ancient settlements, the importance of relations with neighbors, and about the genesis of Illyrian urbanization. This town contains a vast archaeological material, most of which is probably still under the surface. Its location, on the side of the former Egnatia road, makes us talk about the values that live quietly along the entire space of the Dumrea Plateau.

Before the Second World War, oak forests and dense, virgin vegetation dominated the area of Dumrea. Whereas, what has remained today around the territories happened in relation to the urbanization needs of the time after the 50s. The needs of the time turned Belsh and Dumrea into an important Albanian area for agricultural cultivation and livestock breeding.

Belsh Municipality

General Profile


The municipality of Belshi, with an area of 196.44 km2, centered in the town of Belshi, is bordered to the north by the municipality of Peqin, to the east by the municipality of Cerrik, to the west by the municipality of Lushnje and to the south by the municipality of Kuçovë.

Belsh Municipality consists of 5 administrative units, which are: Belsh, Grekan, Kajan, Fierzë and Rrasë. 30 villages such as Kajan, Dëshiran, Grekan, Fierzë, Dragot, Kosovë, Rrasë etc. are part of Belsh municipality.

The unit of Belshi, based on the statistics of 2011 according to the Census recorded 19,503 inhabitants and a density of 99.28 b/km2, while according to the Civil Registry 32,389 inhabitants and a density of 168.88b/km2.

In Belsh municipality, we are dealing with an almost completely rural area, based on Census data (100% rural). The population in Belsh municipality is composed of 69.8% of the population aged 15-65, 10.6% of the population aged over 65 and 19.6% of the population under the age of 15. Meanwhile, in terms of the gender ratio, 50.4% of the population is female and 49.6% is male. Regarding the distribution of the population in the territory, 45.06% of the population is located in the Belsh administrative unit, 20.11% in Kajan, 16.08% in Grekan, 10.58% in Fierza and 8.17% in Rrasa.

Belsh Municipality has a favorable geographical position. It is located at a close distance (45 min) from two large regional urban centers such as Elbasani and Lushnja. Also, with the improvement of the Elbasan-Tirana Road, the time distance from Tirana has been shortened. At the same time, Belshi also has a favorable distance with the Cultural Center of Berat.

Based on the profile, potentials and problems of the Belsh Municipality, the following vision has been established:

"Belshi, a center for agriculture development and tourism, through its transformation into a sustainable space for the development of agricultural and livestock products. A municipality, which bases its development on respect for the natural and landscape environment, the only one of its kind with 84 lakes"