• Vatican City!

    Vatican City: Vatican Museums. Go Now!

    Vatican City
    The smallest country in the world offers the heart of Catholicism and among the world's finest art collections, including the Sistine Chapel and the Raphael Rooms (ceiling pictured). Go to Vatican City!

  • Albania!

    Albania: Village of Theth! Go Now!

    Albania
    Albania is unique in Europe, starting with its Muslim heritage, but expanding to include food, culture, and even its natural beauty. Explore Albania!

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    Netherlands: Wooden shoes. Go Now!

    Netherlands
    This low country might be small, but it maintains a unique place in history and culture. Explore the Netherlands!

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    Ukraine: Traditional Village. Go Now!

    Ukraine
    Ukrainian culture is based on village life, particularly that found in the Carpathian Mountains (pictured). Begin Your Journey!

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    Latvia: Art Nouveau in Riga. Go Now!

    Latvia
    Latvia is small, but has a diverse history, foods, and architecture (shown), which includes aspects from both Eastern and Western Europe. Begin Your Journey!

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    Germany: Town Hall. Go Now!

    Germany
    Food, beer, natural beauty, and more create a country that's known for its distinct culture and history. Go Now!

Architecture of Armenia

Armenian Architecture - Church in Sevan
Church in Sevan

Much of Armenia's most notable architecture is either historic church architecture or more recent soviet architecture. As the first country in the world to make Christianity its official religion, Armenia also has some of, if not the oldest still used churches in the world.

Armenian Architecture - Noravank Monastery
Noravank Monastery

The Cathedral of Echmiadzin was first built in 301-303 and remains to this day as the head of the Armenian Orthodox Church. Since it was originally built, the church has undergone a number of renovations, particularly in the 400s, 600s, and 1600s. Since it was built, the style has influenced many churches in Armenia, Georgia, and even other Eastern Orthodox churches which later arose in Byzantium.

Church architecture continued to develop in Armenia and the Medieval Ages experienced rock shrewn churches, with the Monastery of Geghard acting as the best example. The historic heart of what can be seen today was built in the 1200s as it was carved out of the adjoining cliff.

Armenian Architecture - Eternal flame
Eternal flame

From the 1200s until the 1900s there were few strongly influential architectural movements as Armenia found itself under the control of outside influence for much of this time. Beginning in the early 1900s though, the Soviets took over the region and vastly altered the architectural landscape in the country. The well-known Soviet Style consisting of drab concrete structures focused on efficiency and growth over style now dominates much of the country's large cities, including the capital of Yerevan.

Since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, Armenia has slowly moved back towards their traditional architecture. The most striking example of this is again in church architecture with Saint Gregory the Illuminator Cathedral (2001) in Yerevan.

This page was last updated: March, 2013