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Librazhdi General Info

Librazhdi is a city in southeast Albania, Bounded on the north by the districts of Mat, Bulqizë west of Elbasan district, south district of Gramsh, southeast district of Pogradec and east by the republic of Macedonia. Librazhdi border has a length of 42 km and has a fully-mountainous hilly terrain. What makes it interesting is the relief of Domosdova field holes in Prrenjas and Letmi  Studna field holes. The maximum height above sea level is 2253 m at the peak of Red Mountain Shebenik.. 

Relief and climate

Geographical location, the configuration of relief, the absolute height above sea level and the distance from the Adriatic Sea has enabled the continental nature of the climate which appears in the cold and wet winter and short, hot and dry summer. The average annual temperature is 13.4 degrees Celsius, the maximum temperature recorded was 40.7 degrees Celsius with the minimum temperature is 14/09/1957 and recorded in 1968 by 15.7 degrees Celsius.

History

Librazhdi like all the other cities of Albania, inherits traces of the origins of ancient Albania, as a descendant of the Illyrians, and trace the Middle Ages who spent all under Turkish rule.

Librazhd district was created as an administrative unit in 1958. Today is part of the prefecture of Elbasan. Administrative center is the city of Librazhd. Librazhd district consists of two municipalities and nine communes that were created after the reorganization of local government in 1992. Librazhd population generally appear indigenous. On January 1, 1998 it reached  82,411 residents and about 18,203 families. In the cities of Prrenjas shines reside around 27,963 inhabitants or 29.7% of the population while the rest resides in the village. Librazhdi has an average age of the population 48 years old.

The first school opened in Bërzeshtë in 1895 and the first boarding school was opened also in Bërzeshtë in 1929. Librazhd district has numerous mineral wealth and their base was established during the socialist system for processing their mines like the iron-nickel Prrenjas. Today the district economy is based more in the service sector, livestock, agriculture and forest exploitation.

Culture and ethnography

Librazhdi has a very rich tradition maintained in the field of folk music and dances, ethnographic preserves values, customary, cultural and historical heritage of all provinces, currently has a quite a popular dance group with enhanced activity that takes part regularly in many festivals and concerts organized in Albania and abroad.

Librazhdi has also distinguished personalities in the field of history and culture, some of whom were executed during the communist regime, as known poets of that time Wilson Blloshmi and Genc Leka.

The dissident poets

Wilson Blloshmi and Genc Leka, were two teacher-poets from the region of Librazhd, which was shot from dictatorship on midnight July 17, 1977, because their creativity heretical poetry was awarded to the communist regime. After firing they forgot to turn around and was written just after the '90s, the act has being discussed strongly against them but also the creativity of each, which is regarded as a work of high human
Value. In their memory Librazhd city has set a memorial.

George Arianiti

Known more as the father of Donika, Skanderbeg's wife, he was mostly a warrior, a powerful man with great influence in the area where he had lands and castles, in parts of which were extended in the area of Librazhd.

Tourism

Librazhdi has tourist resources in natural tourism. Recently in the district of Librazhd has been declared a new national park, the Shebenik-Jablanica. But all suburbs of Librazhd are worthy of tourist destinations, though not own a road infrastructure in good condition. It is ideal for adventure tourism, to visit Rrajca, Sopoti, Dardha, Babje, Dorëzi, Qarrishta and all other suburbs, including Prrenjas area. Lakes, springs, waterfalls, karst caves, tablelands etc., inside and outside the natural park, are worthy of strong develop of green tourism and adventure.
 
Polisi
This area encompasses many habitats: alpine and subalpine pastures, forests, glacial lakes, canyons, waterfalls, guva, yeast, etc. .. We meet and subendemike endemic plant species. Constitutes a core area and very important bio-corridor for the big mammals; big bear, wolf, lynx, wild goat, deer.
 
Rrajca
Border area with high biodiversity values. Appears as a very wide area with high biodiversity where dominate the virgin forests of beech. High biodiversity of habitat types, proximity of roads, unique values as a virgin area, for  the existence of rare species of Pinus sylvestris and Betula verrucosa put in this area in a superior position as the region with specific protective value.
 
Sopoti
This area encompasses a variety of habitats: forest, subalpine and alpine pastures, glacial lakes, canyons, peaks, etc.. Characterized by a great diversity of habitat types, the existence of endemic plants. The combination of forests with beech and fir, set in less steep terrain, is a core and important bio-corridor for big mammals.
 
Qarrishta
Boundary protected area with high biodiversity values. Constitutes in a restricted area on the border with Rrajca  and Stebleva. The vegetation appears diverse and interesting. In the upper parts of vegetation, is bordering with the alpine pastures, and we meet the sub-endemic and endemic plants. Nucleus and important bio-corridor for the large mammals.

 

National Park Shebenik-Jabllanica

Has a total area of 927.66 hectares 33, where the bulk of the territory is occupied by forests, followed by pasture areas, agricultural, barren, rocky and land surface.
Although the park areas are related mainly of rural roads, they constitute a very good opportunity for tourism, which in this situation can be considered as part of adventure tourism and hiking. In the future, given the potential investment surrounding areas, the park can turn into a real destination for mountain tourism.
The Park is divided in four areas; central area, with a surface of 14 046 hectares, It is determined as a high level of values area, for the nature, biodiversity, and the content of flora and fauna. That’s because, the zone is right protected at the first level of protection. It makes it a quiet and not damageable area. Nobody can do anything without the permission of authorities.  
The second area is determined as a zone of constant use. With a surface of 5 253 hectares, it includes forestall habitats, meadows almost virgin and natural, around the central area. In this way this second zone has the function of protection of the important first area.
In the second zone is allowed the economic activity for divided seasons, (meadows, medicinal plants, forest fruits, etc.), which do not damage the ecologic integrity  of the ecosystem. All this activity can be exercised only with the permission of the authorities of Park. In this area, can be executed the second level of protection.
The recreative area has a surface of 2 209 hectares, and it is important for the tourist and natural values. This third zone, gives a lot of landscapes, wonderful panoramas and places to tak a brake, to walk, to organize picnics. In this zone are included even the meadows of Letëm, Fushë Studë and Steblevë. The level of protection executed is the third one.   
The fourth area with a surface of 12420 ha, can be used for tourist and archaeological activities, with the permission of authorities, and the economic activities of agricultural and cultural can be exercised too.
In this area are included also the inhabited area of different picturesque villages. The authority of this Park is the administration staff of the zone.
Although the areas of the Park are connected by the rural roads mostly, there are a lot of possibilities for the development of tourism, which in this situation can be limited at the adventure and walking one. In the future,  the possible investments, around, can make this area, a real tourist destination for the mountain tourism.
 
Flora and Fauna
 
1857 spontaneous plant species, vascular, which represent 58% of the Albanian flora or 16% of the flora of Europe are listed in Librazhd, one of the richest districts of the country with different types of plants. They are found in all plant floors and coverings plant occupies about 72% of the territory of the district of Librazhd. The big mammals as the brown bear, wolf, wild pig etc., are the main inhabitants of the Park.

The natural Monuments
9.Geo-monuments.
The Hole of the Dardha Bear. 1550 m above the sea level. Karst well, formed in limestone rocks of the Upper Crete, 20 m deep, with blocked bottom because of clay. Librazhd-Dardhë-Mountain- monument ititnerary.

The hole of  Storks. Polis, 1640 m above sea level. well, formed in limestone rocks of the Upper Crete, 24 m deep with the bottom blocked by a mass of ice, probably Quaternary fossil of the period. Librazhd-Dardhë-Mountain- monument ititnerary.

The cave of Hasani. Dardhë. 930 m above the sea level. It is  formed in limestone rocks of the upper Crete, about 43 m long, 1 m wide and about 4 m high. There are stalactites and stalagmites. Librazhd-Dardhë-Mountain- monument ititnerary.

The cave “Rock of Bee” Dardhë.  On the rock with 100 m of height. It has been explored from the speleologists  of "Puglia Grotte-Dauno"(1996) and S. Sala. It is 60 long, 20 m wide, 25 m high. Librazhd-Dardhë-Mountain- monument ititnerary.
 
The well of Big Site. On the eastern slope of Polisit, 1750 m above the sea level. It is  formed in a lime of Crete, 62 m deep, with blocked bottom. It is explored from the  speleologis of "Puglia Grotte-Dauno" (1996) and S. Sala. Librazhd-Dardhë-Mountain- monument ititnerary.
 
The Cave of Kosharishti. 350 m above the sea level. It formed in limestone of Crete, is about 60 m long, 10 m wide, 5 m high. Librazh-Kosharisht itinerary.

The cave of Pishkashi. 400 m  above the sea level. It iscomposed is a limestone of Crete, is 100 m long, 5-7 m wide, 3-4 m high. There are stalactites and stalagmites. Librazhd-Pishkash itinerary.

Letmi mountain’s Cave.  800 m above the sea level. It is composed in the limestone of Trias-jurasi,  60m long, 7-8m  wide. There are stalactites and stalagmites. Librazhd-Letëm itinerary.

The mahogany of Skanderbeg. Situated on the south of Shebeniku, 1376 m above the sea level. Constitutes limestone block of Crete, placed on the form on mahogany, 1 km long and 800 m wide. In the lithological contact is the red crust of iron-nickel, indicative of peneplene  "Mirdita. The legend says that on this stone, use to have meals the Skanderbeg's army. Prrenjas-Pishkash itinerary.

Hydro-monuments.

The Source of Studna. (Gollobordë), 600 m above sea level. Karst spring which comes in contact between limestone and old flysch. With abundant, clean and cold, water, creates a pleasant environment. Librazhd-Studnë itinerary.

The source of Kosharrishta. 600 m above the sea level. The karst cource comes out in contact between the trasic limestone and tortorian molassa. With abundant, clean and cold, water, creates a pleasant environment. Librazhd-Kosharrisht itinerary.

The lakes of Rajca. On  the eastern slope of Shebeniku, in glacial cirques, 2200 m above the sea level. There are four glacial lakes, among the  moraines, 100-200 m long, 80-100 m wide, several meters deep. Prrenjas-Rajcë-Skënderbej-the road to Shebeniku.

The lake of Floqit. 700 m above the sea level. Constitutes to  karst lake on the outskirts of karst spring, in the contact between limestone and molassa. Librazhd-Floq itinerary
 
The lake of Shebeniku. 1800 m above the sea level. Located in, glacial complex with clean water, the surface freezes in winter. It forms alpine lake ecosystem. Librazhd-Rrajcë or Qarrishtë-Rrajcë itinerary.

The lake of the Old Woman’s grave, Xhyrë, 600 m above the sea level. Constitutes a small karstic lake, formed in outgoing source in the contact between the limestone karst of Crete and molassa. Librazhd-Xhyrë itinerary.

Bio-monuments.

The Birch Forest of Qarrishta.
The Forest of Sravaj.
The Wood of  Bizga.
The plane-tree of Bërzeshta.
 The Plane-trees of Gurakuqi.
The Mulberry of Çupi.
The Plane-tree of Hotolishtit.
The Plane-tree of Taksimi.
The Plane-tree of Gizavashi.
The Beech-tree of Gurra field.
The Forest of Paunchy Kostenjë.