Armenia’s rich cultural heritage is visible everywhere you look, especially in the country’s stunning capital city of Yerevan. Most buildings are of an early Soviet architectural style, and the city also hosts a couple of large scale postmodern wonders. Yerevan is sometimes referred to as the ‘Pink City’ because of the pink color of the tuff stones used for making the buildings. Armenia’s capital is home to a number of art galleries showcasing the work of talented local artists, as well as history and culture museums to visit. Those on a culinary tour will also be delighted to hear that most Armenian gatherings center on food, and that Yerevan is home to a wide range of restaurants offering the best of Armenian cuisine.
Situated north of the capital Yerevan, Tsaghkatsor is the most popular spa town and ski resort. This small laid back town is the perfect vacation spot for all seasons. In the summer, the weather usually stays sunny and mild, allowing visitors to take the ropeway lifts to enjoy breathtaking mountainous views, and have a picnic surrounded by peaceful and green sceneries. In the cold winter, visitors can rent all the ski equipment that they need locally to go skiing or snowboarding down the mountain. The equipment prices are low in comparison to the rest of the world, making it an attractive ski destination for many. It is also one of the Armenian towns with the best tourism infrastructure development including luxury hotels, entertainment facilities and incredible fine dining options.
Ashtarak is known to be one of the most ancient settlements in Armenia. As such, it offers numerous cultural and historical monuments which showcase the country’s prominent architectural features. Indeed, the town was first mentioned as a rural settlement in the 9th century. There are a number of churches to visit, each with their own stories attached to them. Another interesting sight of interest is the 17th century bridge built on the Kasagh River, which is situated in the gorge right below the beautiful church of Surp Sarkis.
Situated in Armenia’s Lori Province, Odzun is an important and beautiful historic village located on a plateau above the left banks of the Debed River gorge. Natural landscapes in the area are breathtaking, especially when viewed from the very famous Odzun Church which overlooks the gorge. The ancient 5th century Church itself is worth visiting, and is actually the main attraction in this town, as it has one of the most stunning basilicas in the country with the finest cupola.
Jermuk is a relaxing little town famous for its mild climate, stunning nature and healing mineral waters. Many visitors to Jermuk come for health treatment purposes, making it the number one town for health resorts. You can also go to the different water stations where you can try the fresh sparkling water at varying temperatures. In total, there are around 40 hyper-thermal mineral wellsprings in Jermuk. One of the other main attractions in town is the Jermuk waterfall, the second largest in the country with waters falling from an altitude of 68 meters.
Dilijan is a major spa town in the province of Tavush, which is most famous for its mineral water curing fountains. A favorite destination among both locals and tourists, the green town offers quite a number of lovely hotels and sanatoriums, giving visitors the opportunity to take in the beauty of the surrounding National Park and the impressive historical sights. Locals sometimes refer to Dilijan as the ‘Little Switzerland’ or ‘Switzerland of Armenia.’ This beautiful forested town also boasts some traditional Armenian architecture, especially in the ‘old town,’ and is the perfect spot for mountain biking, hiking and even picnicking.