Beli Drim River – White Drim River

Beli Drim River – White Drim River

Beli Drim River /White Drim River/ is the river that with the Crni Drim River /Black Drim/ forms the Drim River in the north-east Albania by the town of Kukes. The length of Beli Drim River is 175 km /156 km in Serbia and 19 km in Albania/ making it the largest river in Kosovo and Metohija. Beli Drim River originates in the southern slopes of Rusolija Mountain – also known as the Zljeb Mountain, about 10 km north of the town of Pec and flows through the semi-karst Metohija region. In its first course, the Beli Drim River is underground river that features strong spring and the 25 meters high waterfall in the vicinity of Radovac village. Beli Drim River belongs to the Adriatic Sea watershed.

The source of Beli Drim River is located at the foothill of Rusolija Mountain at the altitude of 580 meters while the point of its confluence with the Crni Drim River is set on 240,80 meters. Beli Drim River flows direction east and gets tributary of the Istocka River when it turns to the south. The rest of course of Beli Drim River passes through the highly fertile and densely populated plain of the Central Metohija known as Podrimlje or Podrima /named after the Drim River/ which makes the border with the neighboring area of Has.

‘The Serbian population in Old Serbia in the second half of the 19th century lived under the pressure of their Albanian neighbors. The Albanian aggression in Podrimlje, a micro-region of Metohija, also marked the epoch. The consequence of the Albanians’ violence was a change in the ethnic and religious image of numerous settlements to the detriment of Orthodox Serbs. The emigration of Serbs also implied the collapse or destruction of Orthodox churches and other material traces of Serbian medieval statehood’. Uros Sesum, Podrima – From the writings of priest Milos Velimirovic

It is strange that large towns /Pec, Djakovica/ are not located right on the banks of Beli Drim River but in its vicinity. Beli Drim River has numerous tributaries: Pećka Bistrica, Dečanska Bistrica, Erenik, Istočka, Klina, Miruša, Rimnik, Topoluga and Prizrenska Bistrica Rivers. Endemic scardo-pindic species such “baldaccii” occur in the Gorge of White Drim River by the village of Zrze. The upper section of the Beli Drim River drainage area is a fertile plain inhabited even in prehistoric times and Antiquity.

The Beli Drim River area came to prominence when at the end of the 13th century the seat of the autonomous Serbian Orthodox Church was transferred to Pec with the strengthening of the Serbian Medieval state and uniting areas that were long before settled by Serbian population in the southern parts of the Balkan peninsula. The Beli Drim River basin has strong influence of warm air that comes from the Adriatic Sea.