Vayots Dzor Province

Armenians are hospitable, but the people living in the Vayots Dzor province are very hospitable.

Noravank

Noravank is a monastery in the Vayots Dzor province. It is 122 kilometers from Yerevan not far from the town of Yeghegnadzor. The road to Noravank goes through the Gorge of the River Amaghu. The gorge is exceptionally beautiful with cliffs on its both sides.

Noravank Monastery is best known for its Holy Mother of God Church (Սուրբ Աստվածածին եկեղեցի). It is a two-storeyed church. On the wall of the church, there is a stone staircase that leads to the second floor. The Holy Mother of God Church was built in the 13th century. The architect of the church was Momik. Momik designed and built the church. He also created the ornaments and cross-stones.

Noravank is also called Amaghu Church which is the name of the village Amaghu, now abandoned.

Noravank was founded by Bishop Hovhannes in 1105.  The monastic complex includes the church of S. Karapet, S. Grigor chapel with a vaulted hall (կամարակապ սրահ), and the church of S. Astvatsatsin (Holy Mother of God).

On the way to Yeghegnadzor there is a sunny village which is famous for its wine Areni.  There is a wine factory outside the village and just adjacent to the factory there is a small firm shop where travelers and especially tourists can stop to taste a glass of legendary  Areni wine.

Every year, on the first Sunday of October, a wine festival is held in the village of Areni. If you go to Areni on this day, you will be surprised to see the whole village turned into a huge wine market. The villagers exhibit their bottled wine, dried fruit, honey, home-made cheese, lavash (Armenian traditional bread) just on the doorway of their houses. It is true that they want to sell their goods but they will be happier if you just taste their wine and praise it.

A perfectly preserved shoe has been found in a cave in the Vayots Dzor province near the village of Areni. The 5,500-year-old shoe is the oldest leather shoe in the world. The Armenian shoe is named “Charokh”.

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Vocabulary

Cliff – ուղղաբերձ ժայռ

Gorge – կիրճ

Monastic complex – վանական համալիր

Two-storeyed -երկհարկանի

Include – ներառել

Abandoned – լքված

adjacent – կից

exhibit – ցուցադրել

bottled – շշալցված

dried fruit – չիր

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