Shoushi is a city in the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh in the South Caucasus. It has been under the control of the self-proclaimed Artsakh Republic since its capture in 1992 during the Nagorno-Karabakh War. Because of historical specifics Shoushi contains both Armenian and Azerbaijani cultural monuments, while the surrounding territories include also many ancient Armenian villages. Shoushi is one of the Armenian religious and cultural centers and predominately Armenian cities of Caucasus. The Eastern Armenian version of four Gospels was completed in 1830 in Shoushi, and then was published in Moscow for the first time.
The symbol of Shushi is an angel holding a trumpet. It was created similar to the ornaments of one of the Shushi’s greatest wonders- Cathedral of the Holy Savior. The 19th century building made of white stones is named “Ghazanchetsonts. The church is the administrative center of the Diocese of Artsakh.
Gandzasar monastery is a 10th to 13th century Armenian monastery situated in the Mardakert district of de facto Nagorno-Karabakh Republic . "Gandzasar" means treasure mountain or hilltop treasure in Armenian. The monastery holds relics believed to belong to St. John the Baptist and his father St Zechariah. The monastery at Gandzasar was first mentioned in the tenth century. The construction of Gandzasar s Cathedral of St. John the Baptist began in 1216, under the patronage of the Armenian prince of Khachen, Hasan-Jalal Dawla, and it was completed in 1238 and consecrated on 1240. Gandzasar is now the seat of the Archbishop of Artsakh appointed by the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin of the Armenian Apostolic Church.
Stepanakert is the capital and the largest city of the de facto Republic of Artsakh. The Republic has limited international recognition.
Stepanakert meaning the city of Stepan is named after Armenian Bolshevik revolutionary Stepan Shaumian. The name is formed of the words Stepan and kert meaning town.
In 1967, the monumental complex of Stepanakert known as “We Are Our Mountains” was erected at the north of Stepanakert, It is widely regarded as a symbol of the Armenian heritage of the historic Artsakh. After the independence of Armenia, many cultural and youth centres were reopened. The cultural palace of the city is named after Charles Aznavour.
Artsakh History Museum, Hovhannes Tumanyan Children s Library, Stepanakert National Gallery, and the Memorial Museum of the Martyred Liberators are located in Stepanakert. The Artsakh State Museum based in Stepanakert, has an important collection of ancient artifacts and Christian manuscripts.
Askeran is a town in the Republic of Artsakh and the administrative center of the Askeran Province. Askeran fortress is situated in the southern suburb of the town. The fortress was built for defense of Shoushi. The fortress was widely used during the Russo-Persian War. The fortress of Askeran was renovated in 2002.
Tigranakert is a ruined Armenian city dating back to the Hellenistic period. It is one of several former cities in the Armenian plateau with the same name, named in honor of the Armenian king Tigranes the Great (r. 95–55 B.C.), although some scholars, such as Robert Hewsen and Babken Harutyunyan, have posited that this particular Tigranakert may have been founded by Tigranes the Great s father, Tigranes I (r. ca. 123–95 B.C.). It occupies an area of about 50 hectares and is located in the province of Martakert in the Republic of Artsakh.
The historical Dadivank, one of the beautiful churches of Artsakh, was built in 9th-13th centuries. The church is located on the slope of Dadivan Mountain in Artsakh. It was called also Khutavank because it was built on the hill (Khut Armenian word for hill).
According to the legend, the church was founded by the follower of Christ s Apostles called Dadi, in the 1st century. In historical references, the church first mentions in the 1st century. Mkhitar Gosh mentioned the church in the 12th century. Unfortunately, in that century the church was attacked by invaders and destroyed. The reconstruction of the church had started in the second half of the 12th century and finished in the 13th century.
The Khor Virap
The Khor Virap is an Armenian monastery located in the Ararat plain in Armenia, near the closed border with Turkey, about 8 kilometres south of Artashat, Ararat Province, within the territory of ancient Artaxata. The monastery was host to a theological seminary and was the residence of Armenian Catholicos. The Khor Virap is the best place to look at the Biblical Ararat.
The Areni winery is a 6100-year-old winery that was discovered in 2007 in the Areni cave complex in the village of Areni in the Vayots Dzor province of Armenia by a team of Armenian and Irish archaeologists.
The winery consists of fermentation vats, a wine press, storage jars, pottery sherds, and is believed to be at least a thousand years older than the winery unearthed in Judea and Samaria in 1963, which is the second oldest currently known.
The Areni Cave is a multicomponent cave site with artifacts dating from the Chalcolithic to the Bronze Age. In Armenia, the Areni Cave complex is also known as "Birds Cave" ("Trchuneri" in Armenian). Located near the town of Areni, which lies close to the Arpa River and the Gnishik River in Armenias central Vayots Dzor Province, the caves are the site at which archaeologists have discovered what is likely the worlds oldest winery, and ancient human brain, the remnants of a 5,000-year-old skirt made of straw, and the worlds oldest leather shoe.
Noravank literally "new monastery" is a 13th-century Armenian monastery. The monastery is best known for its two-storey Surb Astvatsatsin church, which grants access to the second floor by way of a narrow stone-made staircase jutting out from the face of building. In the 13th–14th centuries the monastery became a residence of Syuniks bishops and, consequently. a major religious and, later, cultural center of Armenia closely connected with many of the local seats of learning, especially with Gladzors famed university and library.
The Tatev Monastery is a 9th-century Armenian Apostolic located in South-East Armenia, in the area of ancient Armenian Syunik, not far from the city of Goris and 280 km away from Yerevan. The fortified Tatev monastery consists of three churches; Sts. Paul and Peter, St. Gregory the Illuminator and St. Mary, a library, dining hall, belfry, mausoleum as well as other administrative and auxiliary buildings. The monastery is the "best-known site" in Syunik. Wings of Tatev, a cableway from Tatev to Halidzor village was opened in October 2010.It was included in the Guinness World Records as worlds "longest non-stop double track cable car."
Goris is a town and in Syunik Province at the south of Armenia. It is the Goris is second-largest city in Syunik in terms of population. Throughout its history, Goris has been known as Kores and Gorayk. The stone-pyramids of Old Kores located to the east of the modern town, is one of the most attractive sites in Goris. The old town is home to the 4th-century basilica of St. Hripsime. Goris has a rich heritage in the music of Armenia and is a major centre for traditional music instruments.
Khndzoresk is a village in the South-East of Armenia, in the province of Syunik. The village is located to the right of Goris - Stepanakert highway, on the steep slopes of Khor Dzor (Deep Gorge), from which, according to tradition, it got its name. Khndzoresk is widely famous for its canyon with picturesque rock formations and ancient cave settlement. The artificial caves, some of which are currently used as stables and warehouses, used to be inhabited till the 1950s. In the bottom of the gorge there is St.Hripsime church, dated back to 17th century. On a spur beyond on the right side of the gorge there is Anapat (hermitage) with the tomb of Mkhitar Sparapet. The cave church of St.Tatevos can also be found nearby.
Lake Sevan is the largest body of water in Armenia and the Caucasus region. Its is also one of the lagest freshwater high-altitude lakes in the world. It is considered the "jewel" of Armenia and is "recognized as a national treasure" in the country. Sevan was recognized as being a major potential water resource in the 19th century. Set 1900m above sea level, Lake Sevan covers 940 sq km, and is 80km long by 30km at its widest. The lake supports a healthy fish population, including ishkan, crayfish, sig, etc.
Khor Virap, Areni winery, Areni cave, Noravank, Tatev, Goris (overnight)
Khndzoresk, Shoushi, Gandzasar, Stepanakert (overnight)
Askeran, Tigranakert, Dadivank, Lake Sevan, Yerevan
|Duration||2 night 3 day|
* The unused portions of the itinerary are not refundable.