Best Places to Visit in Armenia

View of the majestic Mount Ararat from Yerevan, Armenia

Yerevan

The capital city of Armenia, Yerevan is also referred to as the ‘Pink City’. This is due to the pinkish colour of the local stone which was used to construct many of its buildings. The city is known for its Soviet-era architecture, which you can see with a stroll through Republic Square. There’s plenty of museums to explore and no trip would be complete without climbing the steps of the Cascade, which offer panoramic views over to Mount Arat. Northern Avenue also boasts plenty of shopping and restaurants where you can sample Armenian cuisine. Time your visit in the summer and you'll find the locals spilling onto the streets to enjoy the warmer evenings.

Mountain ridge and forest in Dilijan National Park, Armenia

Dilijan National Park

Located in the north of Armenia, on the slopes of the Pambak, Miapor and Aregani mountain chains, Dilijan National Park is a nature lover’s paradise. Covering some 240 square kilometres, this park features lush forest and boasts a network of beautiful hiking trails which vary in length and difficulty. Around 40 species of mammal call the park home, including lynx, brown bear, red deer, wolves and wild boar, with bird species including golden and bearded eagles. Dilijan also contains several important historical sites including the monasteries of Goshavank and Matosavank.

Sevanavank Monastery on Lake Sevan, Armenia

Lake Sevan

Found in the heart of Armenia, Lake Sevan is surrounded by spectacular mountain scenery and some beautiful monasteries. The most impressive of them being Sevanavank Monastery, which dates back to the 4th century and is steeped in local legend. As the largest lake in the country, Lake Sevan offers travellers a number of activities including swimming, windsurfing and sailing. As Armenia is a landlocked country, the lake’s beaches are the best spots for sunbathing. There’s also plenty of seafood restaurants along its shores to enjoy some barbecued local fish.

Geghard Monastery, Armenia

Geghard Monastery

Surrounded by towering cliffs at the entrance to the Azat Valley, Geghard Monastery illustrates Armenian medieval architecture at its very finest. The structure features several tombs and churches, most of which have been carved into the cliffs. It was named after the spear used to wound Jesus Christ during the crucifixion, which was allegedly brought to Armenia. With its stunning setting, it’s little wonder the monastery was granted UNESCO World Heritage Status.

Khor Virap Monastery and Mt Ararat in Armenia

Khor Virap Monastery

Established in 642 BC, Khor Virap is the most sacred of all Armenia’s monasteries and the country’s most visited pilgrimage site. This is due to the legend of Saint Gregory the Illuminator, who was imprisoned there for 13 years before helping turn the country into the first Christian nation. The monastery itself features two chapels, a large courtyard and fortified walls. Visitors can not only wander this revered structure but enjoy spectacular views of Mount Ararat and the present-day border with Turkey.

Temple of Garni, Armenia

Temple of Garni

One of Armenia’s most iconic attractions, the Temple of Garni was built in the middle of the 1st century CE. Once a pagan temple dedicated to Mihr, the Armenian sun god, the temple miraculously survived the country’s transition to Christianity in the 4th century. Still today it remains a mystery as to why this beautiful temple was saved when so many other pagan temples were destroyed. Situated on a cliff, the remaining Greco-Roman colonnaded building offers a rare glimpse into what Caucasia was like before Christianity.

See Also

Check out these handy travel guide resources for more information about visiting Armenia.

Best Time to Visit – seasons and weather in Armenia
Top Travel Tips - information about currency, shopping and cuisine
Tourist Visas - what you need to know to enter Armenia