Vayots Dzor, Armenia

Areni


This small village located in the Vayots Dzor province of Armenia is widely known for the wine production. Though, actually the majority of wine is produced in the nearby village of Getap. Besides wine, Areni is also famous for its cooper age excavations. World's oldest leather shoe was discovered in one of the local caves in January 2011. There are a lot of interesting places and ancient monuments to see near the Areni village. We recommend you to visit Surb Astvatsatsin church, ruins of Syunik's palace and the bridge, built by bishop Sarkis in 1265-1287.




Jermuk


Jermuk is a cozy spa town located in the Vayots Dzor province of Armenia. Jermuk has always been popular for its unique hot springs and health-improving mineral water. The town's name itself means "warm mineral spring" in Armenia. The very first references of Jermuk appeared in 13th century; it is mentioned in "History of the Province of Syunik" written by Stepanos Orbelian. Every year beautiful nature, fresh air and tasty mineral water running free of any charge in so-called Galereya attract lots of tourist to Jermuk. But besides it's natural wonders (like Jermuk waterfall), the town together with its surroundings is full of interesting monuments. We advise you to visit Gndevank, Surb Gayane Church and Nagorno-Karabakh War Memorial.





Noravank


Noravank (meaning "New Monastery" in Armenian) is a 13th century monastery, located in Vayots Dzor province of Armenia. It was founded in 1205 by bishop Hovhannes. By the end of 13th and begging of 14th centuries Noravank became official residence of Syunik's bishops and turned into major religious and cultural center in Armenia. This famous complex includes Surb Astvatsatsin Church, Surb Karapet Church, Surb Grigor Chapel and, of course, a few amazing khachkars (also known as Armenian "cross-stones").




Selim Pass


Orbelian's Caravanserai is also known as Sulema Caravanserai or Selim Caravanserai. This basalt caravanserai is located in the Vayots Dzor province of Armenia. Prince Chesar Orbelian built it at the southern side of Vardenyats mountain pass in 1332. Orbelian's caravanserai was serving as an accommodation for the travelers crossing the Vayots Dzor Mountains. The monument was under the restoration during the years 1956- 1959. Today it is the best-preserved caravanserai in Armenia.