East of Turkey and landlocked, the former Soviet state of Armenia (independent since 1991) was one of the earliest Christian civilisations; its first churches being founded in the 4th century. Located on the Silk Route between Europe and Asia, Armenia a rich and colourful history, with many different cultures having exerted their influences over the centuries. Access to Armenia is through the capital city of Yerevan, which has a surprisingly 'Mediterranean' feel, with its thriving markets, laid-back cafe culture and welcoming people. From the high points of the city, the snow-capped peak of Mount Ararat (across the border in Turkey) is clearly seen. One of the undoubted geographical highlights of the country is the vast Lake Sevan, around the shores of which there are numerous ancient monasteries, churches and stone-built fortresses. Armenia also has mountains, including the Geghama Range, where easy hiking through flower-spangled meadows can take in summits such as Mount Azhdahak (3597m/11,801ft). The country's highest peak, the isolated volcano Mount Aragats (4090m/13,418ft) holds snow throughout the year.


The Republic of Armenia is landlocked in the southern Caucasus and is bordered by Turkey, Georgia, Azerbaijan and Iran. It is situated at the cultural, historical and religious crossroads of Europe and Asia. The country has a total area of 29,743 square kilometers and the terrain is mostly mountainous, with fast flowing rivers and few forests. The climate is cold in winter and hot in summer. The highest point is 4090m/13,419ft on Mount Aragats. Mount Ararat, the highest mountain in the region at 5165m/16940ft no longer lies within with boundaries of Armenia, but in Turkey, however Armenians still see it as the symbol of their lands. Lake Sevan is the largest body of water in Armenia accounting for 5% of the country's land area.

Time Zone

The time in Armenia is GMT + 4 hours.

Additional Sources/Information

Lonely Planet.  Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan.
Bradt Travel Guides. Armenia.

Asia Road Map: Caucasus, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan.  freytag & berndt 1:700,000 scale

Lonely Planet - www.lonelyplanet.com
Rough Guides - www.roughguides.com