Mayraberd - Head Fortress
Some 15km from Stepanakert just before the town of Askeran the main road passes right through the fortress known variously as Mayraberd ('Head Fortress') or Zoraberd ('Powerful Fortress'). It was reinforced in 1788-89 by the Persians because of the increasing Russian threat and most of what can be seen today dates from then. The fortress is on both sides of the Karkar River and locals say that originally the two parts were connected by a continuous rampart 1.5km long. That seems improbable given the difficulty of constructing adequate foundations in the boggy land by the river and in the absence of any obvious traces of this central section today. What survives is a triangle of walls breached by the road on the northern side plus a smaller fortification together with several towers and a length of wall with the remains of a walkway on top on the southern side.