Yerevan

Yerevan is the vibrant capital and the largest city of Republic of Armenia with 1.2 million population. It’s blessed with ancient history and colorful culture, historical landmarks and natural attractions, unique architecture and masterpieces of Ancient times, eastern hospitality, friendly locals and culinary delights. Yerevan is located in the North-Eastern part of Ararat Valley on the shores of Hrazdan River and occupies 210 km2 (82 square miles) territory (40°11′ north, 44°44′ east). The altitude of Yerevan is 1000 m above sea level.

It’s one of the oldest cities in the world (29 years older than Rome) erected in 782 BC by king Argishti on the top of the hill Arin-Berd. Archaeological evidence indicates that the 1st settlement (Shengavit) discovered in the current area of Yerevan refers to V millennium BC. During the 3 millennia the name had modifications and Erebuni gradually became Yerevan (Erebuni-Erevuni-Erivani-Erivan-Yerevan). The birth certificate of Yerevan, the cuneiform inscription, was found in Erebuni fortress, which was founded in the north-eastern part of Van’s kingdom, an Armenian state, which existed from 9th to 6th centuries BC and united most of the territories of Armenian Highland. In 18th century the city became the center of Eriwan khanate. After winning the Yerevan fortress in 1827 the Russian troops conquered Eriwan. The city has been the capital of Armenia since 1918, when it took the path of steady growth and development with the establishment of independence. It continued to be the center of 2nd, Armenian Soviet Socialist Republic (since 1921), as well as the 3rd Republic of Armenia (since 1991). Yerevan is the 13th capital of Armenia.

Current plan of Yerevan was finalized by famous Armenian architect Alexander Tamanyan in 1924. The city is circular like the sun with a grid pattern of streets intersected by some circular roads and several parks and has rose-colour tuff as a major stone.  There are many museums, monuments, churches, universities, libraries, state and administrative institutions with unique structures, factories and business centers in Yerevan, which witness about the spiritual, cultural, scientific, educational, artistic, political, administrative and economic significance of the city. Yerevan is one of the safest cities in the world with warm, honest and helpful people, with stable investments and active entrepreneurship. Yerevan consists of 12 administrative districts, most popular amongst which is Kentron, the city center. Most of the hotels, museums, government offices, clubs, restaurants, cafes, water springs are in the very center, which can be walked across in 30 minutes, making Yerevan an extremely walkable city. In the summer and fall, central Yerevan can feel like one big café. It remains light out until late, people are out drinking surj (Armenian coffee) and freshes (fruit smoothies), eating pastries and crepes. The days can be hot, so the nights are perfect for sitting out. In the winter it is much quieter out, yet many teahouses across downtown Yerevan are quite as well as downtown’s main outdoor winter attraction, ice-skating rink are crowded. Spring is beautiful, with short showers and lots of greenery.

Public transport is cheap (100 AMD) and easy, with fixed route vans, buses, trolleybuses and metro bringing people to the center from all over. This interconnects with the national train lines. Yerevan is served by Zvartnots International Airport (EVN), 15 km west.

Yerevan offers a number of places to visit and see:

  • Erebuni – historical and archaeological museum-reserve, where you’ll find the ruins of the fortified city and the archaeological museum.
  • The Matandaran, which is a museum and research institute and the largest repository of around 20000 Armenian manuscripts.
  • Genocide Memorial Monument and Museum, dedicated to the victims of the Armenian Genocide, which took place at the end of the 19th and at the beginning of the 20th
  • Gafesjian Center for the Arts and Cascade Complex – the largest contemporary art museum and a park.
  • Victory park with Mother Armenia statue, which guards the city opening a nice view  of the city.
  • National Gallery of Armenia, which is country’s major art gallery with Armenian, European, Russian, and Oriental Sections.
  • History Museum, which has national collection of 400,000 objects in Archaeology, Numismatics, Ethnography, Modern History and other departments.
  • Parajanov Museum, which is a tribute to famous Armeniandirector and artist Sergei Parajanov, representing his diverse artistic and literary heritage.
  • Yerevan Brandy Company, which organizes special tours in factory and offers degustation of world famous high-class Armenian brandy.
  • Blue Mosque, which is the only mosque in Yerevan.
  • State Opera and Ballet Theatre with breathtaking architectural solutions.
  • Republic Square with its colorfully dancing and singing fountains.
  • Sasuntsi Davit Statue, a masterpiece of Armenian sculpture, depicting the hero of Armenian folk epic poem.
  • Gregory the Illuminator Cathedral, which is the largest cathedral of Yerevan, dedicated to the 1700 anniversary (in 2001) of the adoption of Christianity.
  • Sargis Church, a three-nave basilica dedicated to the patron of lovers and couples.

So this is Yerevan! A small yet very beautiful city calmly lying in the South Caucasus ready to amaze every visitor with its splendid and marvelous views, foods, places of interest and kind and warm attitude. It’s a truly intriguing tourist destination with all the ingredients for a memorable vacation.

Bon Voyage!

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