Korça City

Korçë is a city in southeastern Albania and the capital of the Korçë District. It has a population of around 105,000 people (2009 census), making it the sixth largest city in Albania. It stands on a plateau 850 m (2,789 ft) above sea level, surrounded by the Morava Mountains.

History/ Antiquity

Korça District is one of the South-Eastern Europe areas that is inhabited earlier. Antiquity Neolithic remains have been found indicating occupation of the site from 4000 BC onwards. The area was on the border between Illyria and Epirus and according to a historical reconstruction was ruled by an Illyrian dynasty until 650 BC, while after 650 BC a Chaonian dynasty.  Archaeologists have found a gravestone of the 2nd or 3rd century AD depicting two Illyrian blacksmiths working iron on an anvil near modern Korçë.

Museums

Korçë is called the city of museums. The National Museum of Medieval Art of Albania, has a rich archives of ca. 6500 icons and 500 other objects in textile, stone and metal. The National Museum of Archeology is located in Korçë. The first Albanian School as well as the house of the painter Vangjush Mio and his gallery function as museums. Another museum in Korçë is the Bratko Museum and the Oriental Museum.

Climate

Korçë has a transitional Mediterranean climate (or continental Mediterranean climate) with high temperature amplitudes. The hottest month is August (25 °C (77 °F)) while January (2 °C (36 °F)) is the coldest. The city receives around 710 millimeters (28 in) annual precipitation with summer minimum and winter maximum, which makes it easily the driest major city in generally humid Albania, owing to the rain shadow of the coastal mountains. The temperatures in Korçë generally remain cooler than the western part of Albania, due to the middle altitude of the plain in which it is situated, but it receives about 2300 hours of solar radiation per year, so its temperatures are higher than those in Northeastern Albania.

Economy

During the 20th century, Korçë gained a substantial industrial capacity in addition to its historic role as a commercial and agricultural centre. The plateau on which the city stands is highly fertile and is one of Albania's main wheat-growing areas. Local industries include the manufacture of knitwear, rugs, textiles, flour-milling, brewing, and sugar-refining. Deposits of lignite coal are mined in the mountains nearby such as Mborje-Drenovë. The city is home to the nationally famous Birra Korça