Pogradec, a fascinating destination for visitors to central eastern Albania! Albania falls within the Balkan region of Europe. Pogradec is one of the most preferred tourist resorts because of its excellent fresh-air climate and extraordinary scenery. There are ample opportunities for relaxing in a pleasant natural atmosphere (sun-bathing, swimming, fishing or water sports) or exploring the rich history of the region.
Pogradec is situated 720 meters above sea level and surrounded by beautiful high mountains and Lake Ohrid, the deepest water in the Balkans. The city stretches along Lake Ohrid, sharing a national border with Macedonia, the crossing being just 5 kilometers from the city center.
Along the main city boulevards and lakeshore you will find many bars and restaurants, tourist rest homes and new modern hotels. It is truly a lovely place and enjoys a special and pleasant mountainous climate with cold winters and fresh summers.
Warmth and hospitality of the Albanian people is a distinct characteristic not only throughout the country but is especially distinctive of Pogradecares, the people of this region.Come and explore Pogradec! You will enjoy extraordinary natural beauty, hospitality, culture and cuisine during your stay with us.
Archeology, Nature & History
Pogradec is a modern and pretty town of about 40,000 inhabitants. There is an ancient history and many documented cultural, geologic and natural sites. Politics during the latter 20 th century isolated Albania from the outside world, more than other Balkan countries. Visitors to modern Albania are delighted to find friendly people and unexpected treasures. The Pogradec area is bursting with truly remarkable culture and history.
Archeological excavations on the hill above the town have uncovered a 5 th Century B.C. Illyrian settlement belonging to the early Desaret and perhaps Enkelana tribes. During the following centuries the village people descended down to the foot of the hill and established the city of Pogradec, along the shores of Lake Ohrid.
4 th Century B.C - Selca Tombs
Archeological discoveries confirm inhabitants in the area dating from the Neolithic Period (6000 B.C.), with populations and dwellings increasing during the Copper, Bronze and Iron Ages. Twenty-four monuments of nature and 36 cultural monuments have been officially documented. Some of the more interesting nearby locations to experience this history include:
• Ruins of an Illyrian settlement and a Christian basilica with colorful mosaics are found in the scenic and unspoiled village of Lin , located on the shores of Lake Ohrid.
• The important hill-side village of Selca is inhabited since the 6 th Century B.C., postulated to be connected with battles of Alexander the Great. Five ancient tombs and engraved entrances and monuments mark the site of the powerful ancient city of Pelion, where the Illyrian King Klit lived.
• The 4 th Century castle ruins on the hill over Pogradec have several interesting irregular stone wall formations. From the old castle, the lake and mountain views are splendid as is the view of the Gora Kamja rock formation.
• The long Roman Egnatia Road passes through the region, from Ohrid, Macedonia, through the hill villages of Mokra and terminates at the Adriatic Sea, in Durres. The nearby Golik Bridge (XVIIth Century) built over the wild Shkumbin River mark this early Roman road.
• Numerous water treasures include the Drilon Springs where clear and icy waters flow up into the Drilon River into Lake Ohrid .
• Sacred caves and a church can be found near Qafa e Thanes and the northern border with Macedonia. Paintings from medieval hermits can be seen on the church and cave walls.Explore Pogradec, a region with a full and rich history and many ancient archeological sites awaiting your discovery!
Explore Pogradec, a city and region with many excursion options! The possibilities are endless but we try here to make several different suggestions for your enjoyment:
The lakeside village of Lin is a charming opportunity to see Lake Ohrid life from a traditional perspective. Winding streets lined with old style stone, wooden and brick houses lead to the site of an ancient basilica with 8 colorful mosaics showing fish, water birds and bees, dating from the 5 th Century. The Byzantine church ruins, under World Heritage protection, have a modern cover constructed to keep the treasures from further deterioration and while awaiting further exploration. The Lake Ohrid and mountain vistas from the top of the hill are outstanding!
Five ancient tombs and monuments dating from the 4 th Century B.C. are found in Selca, site of the ancient settlement of Pelion (where Illyrian King Klit dwelled). Other remains date from the Bronze Age through the middle VI th Century A.D. including Ionic treasures, bronze and pottery objects, weapons and articles of gold. You will feel that you've discovered a lost treasure when you visit this important place!
• Golic Bridge
The Golic Bridge spans the wild Shkumbin River and dates back to the XVII Century. This old double-span stone structure is situated along the ancient Egnatia Road, near Golic, which is a charming village in the heart of the Mokra region. Along the road to Golic, you will enjoy breathtaking views of waterfalls and mountain scenery from deep valleys. In taking this trip, you will trace the steps of many ancient people, who over the centuries walked, defended and traveled through the region!
• Guri Kamjes
The Guri Kamjes natural mountain rock formation, created by centuries of wind and erosion is seen from afar throughout the lake region, however a hike to the top is a remarkable excursion. You will have the opportunity to explore caves with white-colored drawings of hunting scenes. Scholars debate whether they date from prehistoric or early medieval times. The trail has been marked and follows both winding animal paths and rocky roads through trees, meadows and open rock face. You are sure to enjoy this expedition!
Just 4 kilometers away in Tushemisht you can see the Drilon tourist resort, named for the fresh water springs and Drilon River. The many decorative trees and plants are in full harmony with Drilon's clear water springs, strolling paths, characteristic bridges and bird life. Tushemisht has a special history because both King Zog and the former dictator of Albania, Enver Hoxha enjoyed summers in this special place. You can visit this house, now converted to a hotel and restaurant with fine local and continental cuisine!