3E Cultural Routes

The city in Zgërdhesh

The ancient city in Zgërdhesh is located 4 km from Kruja and is otherwise known as the Illyrian City of Albanopoli. In the first iron period, the fortification was located on the upper part of the hill, with an area of 1.36 hectar, and in terms of architectural features and archaeological material, it dates from the end of the VII century BC. It has served both as a market and as a craft production center for the area.

During 1847-1850, Austro-Hungarian consul in Janina, George Von Han, made a journey to the middle of Albania and stopped at the ruins of Zgërdhesh. He was the first to identify Zgërdhesh as the Illyrian city of Albanopolis, based on
the work of Egyptian geographer Ptolemy. The latter, in his work “Geography”, gives the cities and settlements and mentions for the first time the city of
Albanopoli, which was to the east of Dyrrah, today known as Zgërdhesh.

Photo credits: Dorian Mahmutaj

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