Armenia is one of the most breathtaking countries in the world. Yes, the country did have its own share of tragic history. The 1915 genocide has destructed thousands of families, and it is why Armenians have spread all around the world. However, it goes without saying that since, Armenia has bloomed to become a strong independent country, an attraction to all foreign businesses, home for creativity and technology, and most importantly a top tourist destination. Here’s a glimpse of how remarkable and historical Armenia really is.
The Pink City
Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, is known to be the oldest continuously inhabited city in the world, even older than Rome! While walking down the streets of Yerevan, the pinkish color of the architectural buildings, constructed during the Soviet period, will grab one’s curiosity, hence the name “Pink City”. The Republic Square with its musical water fountain is something to be amazed by, especially at night when the waters start dancing! Yerevan is rich with its cultural and historical presence yet it has a touch of modernity which makes it a very unique capital.
The first Christian Nation
Back in 301 AD, Armenia was the first nation to accept Christianity as its state religion and for 12 years, it remained the only Christian country in the world. It was in 313 AD that the Eastern Roman Empire followed and accepted Christianity nation-wide. This historical moment makes every Armenian so justifiably gratified. This explains all the ancient yet mystical churches scattered all over Armenia. Known as “Land of Churches”, the country has around four thousand monasteries and churches! It is worth mentioning the biggest church Saint Gregory the Illuminator Cathedral that is situated in the heart of Yerevan, and the oldest church, Etchmiadzin Cathedral located in the city of Vagharshapat.
The Armenian ABC
Around 405 AD, the Armenian alphabet was developed by Mesrop Mashtots, a significant Armenian historical figure. The alphabet is famous for the bird calligraphy “Trchnakir”, where each letter is drawn as a form of a bird to artistically expose the Armenian culture. Another worth mentioning fact is the alphabet monuments in the village of Artashavan, built-in 2005, set against the background of Mount Aragats, the letters and a statue of Mashtots pay tribute to the sophisticated and one of a kind language, a national drive of pride of Armenia.
Chess is a Requirement
No need to feel intimidated if chess is not your strongest game. However, Armenians train their kids from an early age to excel at it and they learn it at school as part of their curriculum! Chess has been frequently played in Armenia since the early Middle Ages then was enforced during the Soviet period. Tourists definitely visit the giant chess set at Charles Aznavour square in Yerevan for a quick game.
As mentioned earlier, Armenia has become a top tourist destination during all of its seasons and a couple of days spent here won’t be enough to entirely explore it. Starting with the ancient churches and temples, Khor Virap Monastery, Temple of Garni, Noravank Monastry and Etchmiadzin Armenian Apostolic Church are few of the many spiritual places to discover. Then moving to Armenia’s breathtaking nature, Lake Sevan, Dilijan and Jermuk will certainly leave a special spot in every tourist’s memory. Let’s not forget Tsitsernakaberd, the Armenian genocide memorial complex where people from all around the world come to see the eternal flame.
Whether you will be visiting alone, with your family, or even planning on spending your honeymoon in Armenia, you will find a very suitable activity for you to do. From educational activities such as visiting Byurakan Observatory to riding the world’s longest cable car in Tatev, your days here will be fully booked. Tsaghkadzor is an all-inclusive fun town; it is a ski resort during winter and a lovely spa town and an entertainment center with zip lines during those hot summer days.
The Velvet Revolution
Not too long ago, in 2018, a series of anti-government actions took place in Yerevan and resulted in a 180degree change in the political regime. It is interesting to note how tens of thousands of people came together and were able to achieve such an accomplishment through dancing and chanting. It is worthy to note that Armenians made one of the few peaceful and fruitful protests worldwide and were the headline of international news for weeks!
Churchill’s Favorite Cognac
Armenian Cognac or brandy is worldwide famous! Ararat is one of the leading brandies in Armenia alongside Noy cognac. The extravagant taste of the cognac on a chilly winter day will make you remember it forever. Legends say that the history of the Armenian cognac goes back to the time when Noah’s Ark landed on Mount Ararat. That Noah had planted the first grapevine in the Ararat Valley. Imagine a drink so refined that it was Winston Churchill’s favourite cognac.
Armenian dinner tables are never complete without their one of a kind Lavash bread which is the tastiest flatbread included in “Unesco’s list of intangible Cultural Heritage”. Armenian dishes are healthy and delicious, usually, one plate won’t be enough to satisfy your cravings. Customarily the dishes are accompanied by their topnotch Armenian wine. Must-try foods are dolma, gata, Armenian fish kebab, ghapama and many more!
All the words in the dictionary cannot express how enriching and interesting it is for someone to visit Armenia at least once during their lifetime. So do not hesitate and book that ticket, we will ensure you will have a blast staying at Armenian Inn Hostel.