Elbasan (Albanian: Elbasan or Elbasani) is a city and a municipality in Elbasan County, central Albania. One of the largest cities in Albania, it is located on the Shkumbin River in the District of Elbasan and the County of Elbasan. The present municipality was formed at the 2015 local government reform by the merger of the former municipalities Bradashesh, Elbasan, Funarë, Gjergjan, Gjinar, Gracen, Labinot-Fushë, Labinot-Mal, Papër, Shirgjan, Shushicë, Tregan and Zavalinë, that became municipal units. The seat of the municipality is the city Elbasan. The total population is 141,714 (2011 census), in a total area of 872.03 km2. The population of the former municipality at the 2011 census was 78,703. It became the seat of Sanjak of Elbasan, a centre of Ottoman urban civilisation over the next 445 years. Although Halil Inalcik explains that the Sanjak of Elbasan was established as soon as the fortress of Elbasan was constructed in 1466, based on Tursun Beg's records there is a possibility that Elbasan initially was part of the Sanjak of Ohrid. In 1467 many Christians from Skopje, Ohrid, Serres and Kastoria were forcibly deported to Elbasan. In the late 17th century, the Ottoman traveler Evliya Çelebi passed through Elbasan and noted that "all the inhabitants speak Albanian" having knowledge of Turkish with Muslim clergy being literate in Persian, while merchants also used the Greek and "Frankish" languages. By the end of the 17th century it had 2,000 inhabitants. The fortress was dismantled by Reshit Pasha in 1832. In 1864, the Sanjak of Elbasan became a part of Monastir Vilayet. In the late nineteenth century, Elbasan was inhabited by 3,000 Muslim families and 280 Orthodox Christian families, of which 100 were old Orthodox Albanian families living in the old Christian neighbourhood within the fortress and 180 Aromanian families residing in the St. Nicholas neighbourhood on the edge of town. At the beginning of the 20th century it was estimated that 15,000 people lived in Elbasan.
Things to do in Elbasan
Petrelë Castle is a castle in Petrelë, central Albania. Its history dates back to Justinian I. Petrelë Castle is 329 m above sea level.
The King Mosque (Albanian: Xhamia Mbret, Turkish: Hünkâr Camii) or Sultan Bayezid Mosque (Xhamia e Sulltan Bajazitit) is a historical mosque in Elbasan Castle, Elbasan, Albania. The mosque was builted by Sultan Bayazit II around 1482-1485. This makes it the oldest active mosque in Albania. It became a Cultural Monument of Albania in 1948.
Elbasan castle is a 15th-century fortress in the city of Elbasan, Albania. The castle was initially composed of 26 equidistant 9 m high towers. Part of Via Egnatia passes through the castle.
The St. Mary's Church (Albanian: Kisha e Shën Mërisë) is an Eastern Orthodox church and monastery in Elbasan, Albania. It became a Cultural Monument of Albania in 1963.
Places to stay in Elbasan