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  • 6 Amazing Things To See And Do In Yerevan, Armenia

    As the capital of historic and culturally rich Armenia, Yerevan has a lot to offer to its visitors. The city is known for its squares, parks, historic monuments, and delicious dolma, just to name a few of its attractions. So, if you are looking for the best things to see and do here, you are in the right spot.REPUBLIC SQUARE Republic Square lies in the center of the city, offering a great glimpse into local everyday life. It took almost 50 years to complete the building of the square; however, most of it was constructed in the 1950s. Spend the morning or afternoon here, and visit the History Museum and the National Gallery.CASCADE STAIRWAY AND MUSEUMLocated in the very center of Yerevan, the Cascade complex is a massive staircase with many terraces adorned with artsy statues and beautiful floral decoration. Go all the way up to have a 360-degree view of the city and Mount Ararat. And for art lovers, the complex has the Cafesjian Center of the Arts museum within the staircase.THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE MUSEUMThe Tsitsernakaberd Memorial honors all the victims of Armenian Genocide carried out by the Ottomans in 1915. The center of the memorial features an eternal flame that has been continuously lit since the opening ceremony. The museum inside the memorial gives you all the harrowing details of this tragedy that Armenia suffered.VERNISSAGE FLEA MARKETWhen visiting a new city, chances are that you’ll want to bring some kind of a souvenir back home. The best place to shop for them is the Vernissage flea market, which basically has anything you could ever imagine. Most of the items here are handmade and include jewelry, woven rugs, purses, clothes, toys, and vintage items, just to name a few.ARARAT BRANDY FACTORYTake a tour of the Ararat Brandy Factory to learn more about the local spirit and even try a sample on its grounds. Produced since 1887, Ararat brandy is made from Armenian spring water and local white grapes. During the tour, you’ll learn more about the traditional method of creating the drink, bottling, and the production processMATENADARANMatenadaran is a place for anyone who’s curious about history, literature, art, and philosophy. In front of the museum, you’ll see a statue of Mesrop Mashtots, the person who invented the Armenian script. Inside, you’ll find ancient texts from around the world, but note that you might want to take a guided tour if you don’t know much about ancient and medieval history.

  • Top 3 Things To Do In Armenia

    1.Delight your taste buds with delicious fruit flavoured wines.Armenia is one of the oldest country that has produced wine in the world. It’s attributed to itsblessed location of being on the fertile valleys of Mt Ararat where high quality grapes could begrown. The interesting thing about this wine tasting session at Areni Wine is that not only youget to taste the traditional red wine, but also wines of different interesting fruit flavours such asapricot, pomegranate and more! The apricot wine was particularly sweet, almost tasted likedessert wine. Though we won’t huge fans of wine, we really liked the fruit flavoured wines!2.Be amazed by the beautiful Khachkars at Noratus CemeteryThe Noratus Cemetery is famous for its collection of more than 1,000 beautifully preservedKhachkars (cross stones) where some had very interesting and unique carvings on it. There was aKhachkar that had a celebratory scene of a wedding being carved on it, because they believedthat you can overcome death with happiness.Fun legend: The shards of glass pieces lying on the tomb in the photo below has an interestinglegend behind it which dates back to the 19th-century. There was a monk named Ter KarapetHovhanesi-Hovakimyan who was from a monastery near the village. He was in charged ofconducting burial services at Noraduz and to do that, he had to travel for 2 hours to the cemeteryfrom the monastery. To save him the trouble, he built himself a small cell in Noraduz andactually lived in the cemetery all the way till he was 90 years old. When he was 90 years old, heasked his fellow monks to bury him alive. His last words were: “I do not fear death. I would likeyou to not be afraid also. Never fear anything, but God alone. Let anyone who has fear come tome. Pour water at the burial stone, drink the water, wash your face, chest, arms and legs. Thenbreak the vessel that contained the water. Fear will then abandon you.” To this day, people stillcome to the monk’s grave to perform this ritual, leaving broken pieces of glass scattered allabout the tomb stone. Interesting huh?3.Explore “the pink” cityOnce you step into Yerevan, you’ll be in awe of its beautiful architecture where its buildingswere made up of volcanic rocks of various shades of pink! That’s how Yerevan got its nickname‘Pink City” or sometimes also known as the city of stones. Yerevan is a very developed city withmodern architecture, cultural centres (Opera House), museums and monuments. Some of thesehighlights include the Republic Square, Genocide Memorial, Mother Armenia Monument,Vernissage Art Market, just to name a few.

  • Noratus

    Noratus is a major and historical village in the Gegharkunik province of Armenia, near the town of Gavar. It is famous for the Noratus cemetery. Noratus is first mentioned as a settlement in the Middle Ages, when it was a much larger settlement. Noratus is most famous for this cemetery, the oldest part of which includes over 800 khachkars (stone crosses), carved between the 9th-17th centuries. The carvings are from each period of the art form's development, which are distilled into three main periods: 9th-10th cc, 11th-12th cc and 13th-16th cc. Noratus field was the second largest field of khachkars in existence until the larger field of around 2,500 khachkars at Jugha (Nakhichevan) were systematically destroyed by Azerbaijan in 1998-2005. Few Jugha Stones survive, mostly at Echmiadzin. After the destruction of the Jugha field, Noratus became the largest remaining collection of khachkars in the world. Noratus has several monuments in the village and the nearby area: St. Astvatsatsin (Holy Virgin) church (partially ruined), located in the village center, was built at the end of 9th century for Sahak Ishkhan (Prince) of Gegharkunik . The vaulted hall was built entirely of solid, finely hewn stone. The churchyard has numerous khachkars (stone crosses) and gravestones. The oldest inscription (996), found on one of the khachkars, is now exhibited at the State History Museum of Armenia in Yerevan. St. Grigor or Doputs monastery is at the south edge of the village. Historically ascribed to the 13th century, inscriptions and its method of construction place the church before the 10th century, mentioned by an inscription on the W wall for a certain Prince Herak'gh (Heracles) Havnuni. According to the Catholicos Simon of Yerevan, its name was Daputs (from “Dapunts”; Tambourine) Cloister and was a convent. Khachkars are scattered throughout the village. The oldest one relates to the construction of a bridge and is dated from 1211. East of St. Astvatsatsin church there is a cluster of khachkars, among a few gravestones, apparently the patrimonial cemetery of Jughayetsonts family (one khachkar is dated 1553). A chapel, set on the hill about 2 kilometers NE of the village, was built from finely hewn stone which survive in the lower rows. The south wall is made from khachkars and the yard is surrounded by ruins of cells. The oldest inscription refers to 1560 but the oldest part of the chapel dates to the 13th century.

  • Oshakan

    Oshakan is a major village in the Aragatsotn Province of Armenia located 8 kilometers southwest from Ashtarak. It is well known to historians and pilgrims of the Armenian Apostolic Church as the site of the grave of Mesrop Mashtots, the inventor of the Armenian alphabet.Mesrop Mashtots is the creator of Armenian alphabet, founder of Armenian school and literature. In 394 he became a priest-teacher; accompanied with his pupils he preached Christian doctrine in different regions. Mesrop Mashtots translated the Bible into Armenian; this translation is considered to be the best in the world. Mashtots was born in village Hatsekats of Taron region, in family of a builder named Vardan. The presumable date of birth is 361.  After his death millenary Vahan Amatuni and colonel Hmayak Mamikonyan transferred the teacher's body to Oshakan, where in three years: in 443, Vahan Amatuni built a chapel. In sign of his deep respect and reverence towards Mashtots, catholicos Hovsep A Hoghotsmetsi entrusted Koryun (Mashtots' s pupil) to write history of life and activity of the great teacher.  Then in 1875-79 catholicos Gevorg D built a church-basilica on the place of the old chapel. The crypt of the teacher is located under the altar; in the Eastern side a belfry of cylindrical form was built in 1884. It is unique in Armenian architecture with its location as well as construction. In the 1960-ies fresco inside the church was done by H. Minasyan. Excavations on Didikond hill, which rises just behind (S) of Oshakan, revealed a square fort of the 7-5th c. BC, with five palace complexes on the N slope. Just N of Oshakan, in a little valley called Mankanots, is a 7th c. S. Sion church, with beside it an unusual pillar on a plinth dated to the 6-7th c. and traditionally believed to mark the grave of the Byzantine emperor Mauricius or his mother, based on the fact that one Armenian historian says he came from here. Elsewhere in the vicinity are shrines of S. Grigor, S. Sargis, S. Tadevos the Apostle, a rock-cut Astvatsatsin, and a Tukh Manuk shrine atop the hill. The area has a series of rich Iron Age tomb fields. W of Oshakan is a bridge of 1706 over the Kasagh river.This location is a touristic important sight. Here there are international symposiums and seminars held including a fest called "Targmanchats".

  • Tatev Monastery

    The Tatev Monastery is a 9th-century Armenian Apostolic monastery located on a large basalt plateau near the Tatev village in Syunik Province in southeastern Armenia.Tatev Monastery is one of the four most wonderful places of Armenia together with the monasteries of Sanahin, Noravank and Haghpat. Located 1600 high in the mountains, in Zangezur, Tatev Monastery forms an incredible harmony with the picturesque landscape creating an impression as if it were an inseparable part of that landscape.The monastery was founded in the fourth century at the site of a pagan temple. There was a church and a few monks. According to Stepanos Orbelyan, an Armenian historian, the founders of the church were Prince Ashot, his wife Shushan, Grigor Supan, the ruler of Gegharkunik, and Prince Tsagik.At the end of the eleventh century and were built three churches, a hall for pilgrims and other buildings. From the thirteenth century was the seat of the Bishops of Syunik Sometimes the monastery suffered attacks by invaders and earthquakes. Tatev monastery was seriously damaged after an earthquake in 1931, the dome of the St. Paul and St. Peter church and the bell tower were destroyed.Tatev Monastery is one of the four most wonderful places of Armenia together with the monasteries of Sanahin, Noravank and Haghpat. Located 1600 high in the mountains, in Zangezur, Tatev Monastery forms an incredible harmony with the picturesque landscape creating an impression as if it were an inseparable part of that landscape.The monastery was founded in the fourth century at the site of a pagan temple. There was a church and a few monks. According to Stepanos Orbelyan, an Armenian historian, the founders of the church were Prince Ashot, his wife Shushan, Grigor Supan, the ruler of Gegharkunik, and Prince Dzagik. At the end of the eleventh century and were built three churches, a hall for pilgrims and other buildings. From the thirteenth century was the seat of the Bishops of Syunik Sometimes the monastery suffered attacks by invaders and earthquakes. Tatev monastery was seriously damaged after an earthquake in 1931, the dome of the St. Paul and St. Peter church and the bell tower were destroyed.In 1387 during the invasion of Tamerlane, the monastery was burned and looted. After the invasions of nomadic Turkmen tribes in 1435, the monastery and college were devastated, and the bishop with the fraternity moved to the monastery of Sanahin. At the beginning of the 10th century, a school was founded in Tatev, the students of which studied humanitarian sciences and illustrated manuscripts. It played an especially active role in the development of science and art in the 14th-15th centuries, under Ovnan Vorotnitsi (1315-1388) and Grigor Tatevatsi (1346-1411).The University of Tatev operated in the monastery between 14-15th c. and housed 600 monks, philosophers, painters, musicians and others.It can be said for sure, that you will never forget you visit to Tatev. The longest ropeway “Wings of Tatev” is a Guiness Book of Records entry. The ropeay goes from the village Halidzor to the village Tatev. During the ride you will enjoy fantastic scenery.What you will see:Mighty fortress walls upon massive cliffs;An ancient oil mill with stone grinders;Swinging Pillar – a unique medieval structure;The tomb of Grigor Tatevatsi, the last saint of the Armenian Church;Ancient frescoes by European masters.

  • Tsaghkadzor

    Tsaghkadzor, is a spa town and urban municipal community, as well as one of the most popular health resorts in Armenia, located north of the capital Yerevan in the Kotayk Province. According to the 2011 census, the town has a population of 1,256, down from 3,350 reported in the 1989 census.Kecharis Monastery. Beautiful monastery that recently underwent restoration work. It is now a working church again, with the smells, sounds and music that goes with it.Makravank Monastery. This involves either hiking over the ridge south of town, or driving around back to Hrazdan and over to Makravan Village. Quaint little old village monastery.The town is famous as a center of tourism , skiing, where there is an especially significant chairlift with five stations and more than a dozen ski runs. The Tsakhkadzor Ropeway is located on a slope of Teghenis Mount. From the height of 2819m, where the speed chairlift will take you in 32 minutes, all Armenia is visible at a glance – in clear weather, it offers a breathtaking view of Mount Ararat . In 2004, under the direction of the second RA President Robert Kocharian, the ropeway has been completely replaced by a new, modern one by the Italian company «LEITNER». The first station is with 4-seat chairlifts , the second , third, fourth – 2-seat chairlifts . It is possible to change from one station to another without removing the equipment : the services of skiers and snowboarders comfortable drag lifts And recently for “mountain beachgoers” (so mountain skiers call those tourists who didn’t get up yet on skis) started separate, fifth turn. Now both the ropeway, and the skiing runs armed with the best equipment and the equipment, guarantee to tourists and fans of mountain skiing active and safe recreation. There are also cafes, bars, rescue services, the services of first aid, training services for novice skiers etc.

  • Karmravor Church

    Karmravor, also known as the Church of Holy Mother of God is a 7th-century Armenian Apostolic church in the town of Ashtarak in the Aragatsotn Province.Karmravor or St. Astvatsatsin (St. Holy Virgin) church is situated on the elevated location of Ashtarak. It seems to dominate over the whole city, but not because of its huge parameters. In fact, it is quite a small, neat church, clear, but not simple: its beauty is hidden exactly in that. Unfortunately, the concrete date of foundation and the name of the architect are still unknown, but the inscription, stretching the walls: the birth certificate of the church, allows to suppose, that it was built in the 4th century. According to the legend, in Ashtarak were three sisters who loved one boy with the name of Sargis. The elder sisters decided to sacrifice themselves for the happiness of their young sister. They wore orange and red dresses and throw themselves into the deep canyon. Hearing the news about the death of the sisters, the young one wore a white dress throwing herself too and Sarkis became an ascetic. In the surroundings of the church were found many khachkars(cross-stone).  The most interesting is the Tsak-Kar (which means a hole in the stone) which date back 1268. In the ancient times, the church was chapel for the virgins and had an Indian decorative curtain which was brought from Kalkata in 1798- 1799. The church also had a Gospel Book of Shukhonts which is a handwritten book, Shukhonts family dedicated this book to church in 1873.  Karmravor has a wooden door(1983) decorated with engravings and singing angels. The author of the door is Sargis Poghosyan. Near the church, in one corner is the tomb of Great Armenian Poet Gevorg Emin.

  • Jermuk

    Jermuk town is located in southern Armenia, in Vayots Dzor Region and considered to be one of the main spa and resort towns in Armenia since the Soviet Union period. It is situated  53 km east of the administrative center of Yeghegnadzor and 170 km south-east of Yerevan,2080 meters above sea level.Jermuk is within the mountains of Vayots Dzor, among thick forests, on a plateau which is divided into two parts by the canyon of Arpa River.Its name itself is derived from this fact, as the word, "jermuk" means "geyser" in the Armenian language.The attractive for fresh air, waterfalls, artificial lakes, walking trails, the surrounding forests and mineral water pools are making the town one of the best in Armenia. It is also famous for its hot springs and mineral water  "Jermuk" brands bottled in the town.Besides that, the city is the major chess center where numerous chess international tournaments scheduled in the town. The surrounding mountains range between having a height of 2500 and 3500 meters, covered with forests and alpine meadows. The forests are rich with oak and hornbeam trees, wild pear, plum and juniper plants. Animals like foxes, rabbits, badgers, and bears can be found in the forests.Jermuk's are was considered to be a part of the Vayots Dzor canton of the Syunik Region. The first time the town's name was mentioned in the 13th century by famous Armenian historian Stepanos Orbelian in his book of "Sisakan Region's history". In the area of the modern-day city was found the remains of an ancient cyclopean fortress and the ruins of an 8th-century basilica which proves that the city has been settled before the 13th century.This town is rich with mineral springs, also underground geyser which is used for bath and drinking. It cures various diseases and neurological disorders. One of the most beautiful places in this town is Jermuk waterfall which has 72-meter height and flows into Arpa river. The waterfall has a fascinating and marvelous look reminding the hair of a girl. The locals call the waterfall "Mermaids hair". According to the legend, the castle of the powerful King located on the cliffs. The king had a beautiful girl. From different parts of the world, many noblemen came here to marry her but the girl rejected everyone because she had a lover who was a simple but brave man. Every night, from her window a girl threw a long rope so that her man could climb the cliffs to see her. Once her father saw them together and curse her daughter saying that "If you meet him again, you will become a mermaid and could never get out of the water". But the love of the young people was strong than the curse. The girl threw her hair instead of the rope when her father's curse happened and she became a mermaid, her hair turned into a beautiful waterfall.

  • Amberd

    Amberd is a 7th-century fortress on the slopes of Mount Aragats. It’s said that during Bronze age and the Urartian period the castle used to be a summer residence for kings. A name of the castle means “fortress in the clouds”. There were other versions of name: Hanberd, Hamberd, and Ghzghala. Some sections of Amberd walls were constructed in the 7th century as a possession of the noble House of Kamsarakan. In the 8th century, the castle passed to Bagratuni House later becoming one of the most important military bases of their Kingdom. Then the fortress was passed to Pahlavuni House. Four centuries later Vahram Pahlavuni built the Church of Surb Astvatsatsin in 1026, fortified the complex with thicker stone walls, and added three bastions along the ridge of the Arkhashen canyon.In the 1070s Seljuk Turks invaded Amberd and turned it into a military base. But in 1197, a joint-army of Armenians and Georgians led by General Zakareh Zakarian liberated the fortress. Under Zakarian control during the 12th and 13th centuries, the castle and outer buildings were renovated and reinforced. Looking to this castle you go to the history and if you close your eyes maybe see the kings. It's interesting and exciting. To be here is a little adventure. You’ll see how lived the kings what they had. The words can’t tell you everything. So visit yourself.Don’t miss a chance to see this historical place.