Cities & Towns & Places
Armenia is a landlocked country in the southern Caucasus. At 11,500 square miles (about 30,000 square kilometers) it is just 10 percent of its size in the glory days of the ancient Kingdom of Armenia (190 все to 387 се).
Although Armenia is an urban country with very few people living on farms, it does not have many large cities. Yerevan, the capital, is the only city with more than 1 million people. Gyumri, with 160,000 people, is the next largest city and sits in the northwest corner of the country. These are the only two cities with airports, so they serve as the nexus for the country’s imports and exports. The third largest city, Vanadzor, has 150,000 people.
The remaining small towns are dotted around the country at intervals of 10 to 20 miles and serve as a reminder of the country’s roots as a nexus for trade: This is the farthest distance one can reasonably travel with pack animals in one day, so travelers’ inns had to be spaced about this far apart. As the country grew, the inns naturally turned into small towns that supported fledgling industries.
An advertisement for Armenian tourism proclaims, "Noah's Route, Your Route," a reference to snowcapped Mount Ararat, which is highly visible from Armenia's capital city of Yerevan. It was here, according to the biblical Book of Genesis, that Noah's Ark landed after the Flood and life began again. For Armenians Mount Ararat is a symbol of the unique nature of their identity. It is part of their proud past, yet remains a looming testimony to their loss, as this beloved mountain now lies in Turkey.
Culturally, Armenia is considered neither East nor West. Its language is an independent branch of the Indo-European family—neither distinctly Asian nor European. It has sealed borders with two of its neighbors, and its very shape seems to indicate unease with its current status.
If you have any questions about travel to Armenia (visa, hotels, guide services, transportation), please feel free to contact us at any time and we will gladly answer your questions.