Armenia is located in the southern Caucasus and is the smallest of the former Soviet republics. It is bounded by Georgia on the north, Azerbaijan on the east, Iran on the south, and Turkey on the west. Contemporary Armenia is a fraction of the size of ancient Armenia.
Armenian relief is predominantly mountainous. Nearly 90 percent of the country is at an altitude of 1,000 to 3,000 m above sea level. The highest point is Mount Aragats, 13,435 ft (4,095 m). Most of the agriculture activities are in lowland areas that are irrigated by fast-flowing rivers. The largest irrigated areas are the Ararat Valley, Sevan Basin, Aparan, Lori and Shirak plains. Forests cover 12 percent of the territory of the country. The river network of the country is dense, especially in mountainous areas, however, it consisits of mainly mountain rivers with no navigation. All the rivers belong to the basins of the two largest ones- the Araks and Kura. In Armenia, there are several high mountain lakes, the largest of which is Lake Sevan. The other big ones are the lakes of Arpi, Kari, Parz, North.
Several climatic zones are represented in Armenia. The climate of the Ararat valley can be characterized as extremely continental with hot summers and cool winters. In general, the climate of Armenia is favorable for tourism. Peculiarities of its mountainous landscape prevent most of the territory of the country from the cold winds and moist air
Armenia’s population is 3.3 million, the largest city and capital of being the city of Yerevan (1.5 million inhabitants). The territory of modern Armenia is 29.8 thousand square kilometers.
Armenia is a constitutional republic with a developing economy. Tourist facilities, especially outside Yerevan, the capital, are not highly developed, and many of the goods and services taken for granted in other countries may be difficult to obtain.
Armenians as a nation being known since 2492 BC. The Armenian people who were the first ever to adopt Christianity.
Armenia was incorporated into Russia in 1828 and the USSR in 1920. Armenian leaders remain preoccupied by the long conflict with Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh, a primarily Armenian-populated exclave, assigned to Soviet Azerbaijan in the 1920s by Moscow. Armenia and Azerbaijan began fighting over the exclave in 1988; the struggle escalated after both countries attained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. By May 1994, when a cease-fire took hold, Armenian forces held not only Nagorno-Karabakh but also a significant portion of Azerbaijan proper. The economies of both sides have been hurt by their inability to make substantial progress toward a peaceful resolution.
Where to go
Most visitors to Armenia spend all of their nights in Yerevan. Spending a night or two in Dilijan while exploring Tavush Marz is well worth it. From Dilijan you can explore up to the Georgian border and the remote Shamshadin region much more easily than from Yerevan, and then continue on to Lori Marz.
- Armenia is known for its rich history, cultural heritage, stunning landscapes, and warm hospitality. Here are some of the touristic highlights of Armenia:
- Historical Landmarks: Armenia is home to several historical landmarks, including ancient churches, monasteries, and fortresses. Some of the most famous landmarks include the ancient Garni Temple, the Khor Virap Monastery, and the Geghard Monastery.
- Natural Landscapes: Armenia boasts stunning natural landscapes, including the beautiful Lake Sevan, which is the largest lake in the country, and Dilijan National Park, which is a lush, forested area with hiking trails, waterfalls, and stunning vistas.
- Culture and Arts: Armenia has a rich cultural heritage, and visitors can explore the country’s museums, art galleries, and cultural institutions. Some of the most famous cultural landmarks include the Matenadaran Manuscript Museum, the Armenian Genocide Memorial, and the Cafesjian Museum of Art.
- Wine and Cuisine: Armenia is famous for its wine and delicious cuisine, which includes dishes such as khorovats (grilled meat), dolma (stuffed grape leaves), and lavash (flatbread). Visitors can explore local vineyards and taste a variety of local wines.
- Adventure Activities: Armenia offers a range of adventure activities, including hiking, skiing, and rock climbing. Visitors can also explore the country’s stunning landscapes by taking a hot air balloon ride or going on a jeep safari.
These are just a few of the touristic highlights of Armenia, but the country offers much more to explore and discover, including its welcoming people, traditional festivals, and ancient traditions.
The monetary unit is the Armenian Dram (U.S. $ 1 – 380 drams in 2012).
- IMArmenia.com – Provides a brief history of Armenia, photos and videos, and map of tourist attractions.
- Lonely Planet – Armenia – Comprehensive facts and advice for traveling along with background material on the culture and history of the country.
- Travel Notes – Travel and tourism information for visitors.
- TraveltoArmenia.am – A travel guide, photos and videos of Armenia and Yerevan.
- WorldTravelGuide.net – Armenia – Information on Armenia including maps, photos, weather, key places to visit, attractions, hotels, restaurants, events, shopping and nightlife.