Armenia is a country with an ancient history, located in a very picturesque area. There are a lot of places that have retained their unique flavor.
The oldest of these words best describes Armenia. Indeed, this country was the first to adopt Christianity, because there are many ancient temples, and the great culture of the state of Urartu is still a mystery and causes awe of scientists. The thousand-year-old observatory, mountain villages where houses were built a couple of hundred years ago, the ruins of fortresses - all this can be seen in Armenia.
And also very hospitable people live here, tourist tours are very cheap, overnight also. We advise travelers to completely switch to local cuisine during their holidays in Armenia. Believe me, you haven’t eaten such a delicious barbecue anywhere! And here there is the freshest baked pita bread, duduk, famous cognac, churchkhela and wine.
Visit Lake Sevan and Tatev Monastery, wander the mountains, get acquainted with the unimaginably ancient history of Armenia, and in search of modern entertainment, go to Yerevan, a city that quite successfully combines innovation with ancient traditions.
What to see in Armenia?
The most interesting and beautiful places, photos and a brief description.
1. Lake Sevan
The pearl of Armenia, located at an altitude of 1916 meters above sea level. With its clear water and green shores surrounded by mountain peaks, Sevan is called one of the most beautiful mountain lakes in the world. The ancient Armenians believed that the Gods drink from Sevan, therefore they treated him with great trepidation. Now more than 250 thousand people live on the shores of the lake, excellent conditions are created for relaxation, and the area is simply created to enjoy nature.
2. Karahunge Observatory (Zorats-Karer)
At first glance, this is not an observatory at all, but blocks of stones that someone placed in an incomprehensible to modern people, but well-traced order. Scientists have recognized that Zorats-Karer is truly an observatory. It is located on a mountain plateau near the city of Sisian. The complex includes many standing stones, some with holes. Archaeologists have found burial places, a corral for livestock, as well as a special arrangement of stones that allows you to observe the sun and moon.
3. Mount Ararat
Ararat is the pride of Armenia, its most famous peak, which it shares with Turkey. Small and Big Ararat are divided, however both peaks are considered sacred. Locals believed that climbing Mount Ararat, where, according to legend, Noah’s ark stopped after the Flood, is a matter of God. Today, everyone who is confident in their abilities and preparation can climb Ararat, just buy the appropriate ticket and get permission from the authorities.
4. Tatev Monastery
The most famous and ancient monastery complex of Armenia, located 20 kilometers from the city of Goris. Today it is a tourist complex that attracts thousands of travelers. Tatev is famous not only for its history (it was built in the 9th century), but also for the Wings of Tatev cable car, as well as the Satan Kamurj natural bridge and the cave of the same name. In Tatev, you can see several ancient temples and many other attractions at once.
This is another famous monastery complex, built in the X century. Included in the list of UNESCO. Sanahin is known for its original architecture and rich history. The harmonious architectural ensemble of Sanahin includes a cathedral with the remains of murals, several groups of sculptural images, a chapel, a church, a tomb, as well as an original arch bridge decorated with figures of wild cats.
6. Mountains of the Lesser Caucasus
They differ from their “counterpart” of the Greater Caucasus by the lower peak height, but this does not at all make them less attractive to tourists and climbers. The highest peak of the Lesser Caucasus - Mount Aragats with a height of 4090 meters - is located in Armenia. The Lesser Caucasus includes seven ranges, between the peaks of which are cozy green valleys and pristine forests. The nature here is amazingly beautiful, so not visiting this place would be a big mistake.
7. Church of St. Hripsime
Built in the 17th century, the church in the city of Vagharshapat today attracts tourists with its unusual architecture. Church of St. Hripsime looks both powerful and elegant, majestic and calm. The legend of Christian girls who fled from Rome to Armenia but were killed here by a local king who later repented, was baptized and built this unusual church, named after one of the girls, is associated with the construction of the church.
In Yerevan there is a unique repository of ancient manuscripts - Matenadaran. To see this building and its exhibits, you should climb uphill on Mashtots Avenue. Near the entrance you will be greeted by sculptures depicting Mesrop Mashtots, the creator of Armenian writing and his student. Today, the Matenadaran is the largest repository of ancient Armenian manuscripts on the planet, although the collection was previously plundered several times.
9. Etchmiadzin Cathedral
The main temple of the Armenian Apostolic Church. Echmiadzin Cathedral is located in the city of Vagharshapat, is included in the UNESCO list. This is one of the oldest Christian temples on the planet, built in the IV century! The cathedral, of course, has undergone many reconstructions over so many years, the last in the 20th century. The temple is distinguished by lush decoration, austerity of lines and special architecture, complemented by pointed bell towers.
10. Mihra Temple in Garni
This unusual temple is called the "Armenian Parthenon." The Mihra Temple in Garni really looks antique, it seems that by some miracle it was transferred to Armenia from Ancient Greece. Slender columns, porticoes, luxurious mosaics - the temple of Mihra was used by Armenian kings with pleasure as a summer residence. It was carefully restored after the earthquake and now historical performances are regularly held here.
11. The fortress of Erebuni
If you want to see what the capital of Armenia looked like 2.7 thousand years ago, be sure to take the time to visit the Erebuni fortress, which became the first major defensive structure in the country. Erebuni still holds a lot of mysteries, archaeologists continue to find unique artifacts here. And the fortress itself, located in the valley of Ararat, looks very beautiful.
12. Yerevan cascade
The cascade occupies the status of the main attraction of Yerevan, therefore, to visit the capital of Armenia and not see this man-made miracle will be a big omission. The cascade is an artistically decorated and ordered sculpture, stairs, fountains and flower beds, picturesquely located on the slopes of the Kanaker hills. This is really the main decoration of the city, and from the top of Yerevan Cascade a wonderful view of the whole city and the peaks of Ararat will open.
13. Khor Virap
Khor Virap is located at the foot of the most famous mountain of Armenia - Ararat, above the underground prison, which was used in the IV century. The views from the monastery are really amazing, but its buildings themselves are interesting for their history and interior. We advise you to visit the cells of the underground prison, which have survived to this day and the Church of Our Lady.
14. Republic Square in Yerevan
The architecture of the Republic Square was created until 1958, it is formed by five buildings located here: the Central Post Office, the National Historical Museum of Armenia, the Ministry of Energy of the country, the Government of Armenia and the Marriott Armenia Hotel. It is noteworthy that all the buildings are laid out from pouf, represent a single architectural ensemble. We advise you to visit the square in the evening, when the singing fountain turns on, changing the backlight.
This is a memorial complex erected on the hill of the same name and dedicated to the Armenian Genocide at the beginning of the 20th century. Tsitsernakaberd includes a 44-meter stele, a cone pedestal with burning eternal flame, a wall of mourning, and the Armenian Genocide Museum. The stela is split, which symbolizes the separation of the Armenian people, most of whom live in the Diaspora precisely because of the genocide. The place is beautiful, memorable and a little sad.
16. Geghard Monastery
Geghard is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Armenia due to its ancient history, unique architecture and proximity to the capital. Geghard is located 40 kilometers from Yerevan, in the picturesque gorge of the mountain river Gokht. The monastery is built on the rocks, many rooms are simply hollowed out inside the cliffs, and the stone walls are decorated with steles with crosses.