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This 9th century monastery is our crown jewel. It represents everything Armenia is - high mountains, dramatic gorges and a unique religious symbol perched up in the craziest, most impassable location. You will have to drive 4-5 hours from Yerevan through winding roads and beautiful scenery to reach our southernmost and rocky region - Syunik. The reward is indescribable - the monastery sitting by the edge of a cliff in the middle of a gorge will take your breath away! When built it also served as a fortress, protecting Armenia from the threats from the south. In the 14-15th centuries it housed a university, where scholars played a major role in developing and preserving our culture. In 1932 the monastery got ruined by an earthquake, however was brought to its original state in the recent years. The complex contains three impressive churches and an 8-meter high pendulous column - “Gavazan” (walking stick), decorated with a khachqar, that swings during an earthquake. In 2011 the world’s longest ropeway was constructed connecting Halidzor and Tatev villages and cutting the travel time considerably. We recommend taking the 5.7 km air tour, the views are majestic. Tip: For best photo shots travel a couple hundred meters beyond Tatev to reach the opposite hill. From the monastery you can hike through the gorge and across the river to the Devil’s Bridge, a 30m long and 50m wide natural rock formation, formed by the river cutting through the mountain. Recommended to bring a swimsuit and your brave heart to climb down the rock as the caves coloured by minerals are best seen from the riverside.
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