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Welcome To Armenia

Yerevan

Yerevan ("Երևան" in Armenian; former names include Erivan and ancient name Erebuni; sometimes mistakenly written in Russian transliteration as Erevan) (population: 1,201,539 (1989 census); 1,088,300 (2004 estimate) is the largest city and capital of Armenia. It is situated along the Hrazdan River, which is not navigable, on the Ararat Plain.

Yerevan is a leading industrial, cultural, and scientific centre in the Caucasus region. It is also at the heart of an extensive rail network and is a major trading centre for agricultural products. In addition, industries in the city produce metals, machine tools, electrical equipment, chemicals, textiles, and food products.

Educational and cultural facilities in Yerevan include universities, the Armenian Academy of Sciences, a state museum, and several libraries. The largest repository of Armenian manuscripts, and indeed one of the biggest repositories of manuscripts in the world, is the Matenadaran.

The layout of Yerevan was designed by Alexander Tamanyan in the 1920's, and has grown way beyond his projections of a couple of hundred thousand residents. The center however remains pretty close to what he envisioned, with a grid pattern of streets intersected by some circular roads and a lot of parks.

In Novemeber 2007, the pedestrian street Northern Avenue opened, linking the Opera to Republic Square. These being the two focal points of life in the city will make for a lively street.

Along with the Northern Avenue, some of the hipper streets are Abovian Street, Tumanian Street, Sayat Nova Street, Terian Street, Mashtots Street, and Amiryan Street.

 

History

 

Archaeological evidence indicates that a military fortress called Erebuni (Էրեբունի) stood on Yerevan's site as far back as the 8th century BC. Since then the site has been strategically important as a crossroads for the caravan routes passing between Europe and India. It has been called Yerevan since at least the 7th century A.D., when it was the capital of Armenia under Persian rule.

Due to its strategic significance, Yerevan was constantly fought over and it passed back and forth between the dominion of Persia and the Ottomans for centuries. In 1827 it was taken by Russia and formally ceded by the Persians in 1828. After the 1917 Russian revolution it enjoyed three years as the capital of independent Armenia, and in 1920 became the capital of the newly formed Armenian Soviet Socialist Republic, a territory of the Soviet Union. With the collapse of the Soviet Union, Yerevan became the capital of the independent Republic of Armenia in 1991.

 

Climate

 

Yerevan has a decidedly continental climate. Though it is at the same latitude as warm Mediterranean countries like Portugal, the 1km elevation and the distance from the sea means that the summers are very hot (sometimes reaching over 40 celsius in the summer), the winters very cold, and the humidity very low year-round.

 

Monuments and Buildings

 

  • Tsitsernakaberd - the monument commemorating the victims of the Armenian Genocide. It is located at the top of Tsitsernakaberd Park, where you could also find the Genocide Museum.

  • Cascade - the massive white steps that ascend from downtown Yerevan towards Haghtanak Park (Victory Park). The Cafesjian Museum of Contemporary Art will be located at the top of Cascade (under construction, will open in 2010).

  • Mayr Hayastan - the Mother Armenia statue located in Haghtanak Park (Victory Park) and overlooking downtown Yerevan. Underneath the statue is the Mother Armenia Museum of the Ministry of Defense, and next to the statue is an amusement park.

  • Opera - Aram Khachaturian Concert Hall & the Alexander Spendiaryan Opera and Ballet National Academic Theatre. Two grand halls that host the Philharmonic Orchestra, various Armenian folk dance ensembles, choirs, operas, ballets, and more.

  • Sasuntsi Davit Statue - David of Sasun, an epic Armenian folk hero.

  • Ararat Brandy Factory - tours to see the production facilities and taste the company's various brandies.

  • Pantheon - cemetary where many famous Armenians are buried.

  • Yerablur - military cemetery.

  • Cossack Monument in Yerevan Hamalir - Sports and Concert complex. Yerevan's answer to the Sydney Operahouse. Hosts various concerts and conferences.
 

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