Amberd, Armenia

The complex of Amberd derives its great historical importance from its uniqueness, being one of the best and the largest examples of Armenian fortress construction. The site incorporates a rich variety of buildings (church, chapel, baths, walls, gates, etc.), in a spectacular position defined by good natural defenses.

The Amberd Fortress is located 4 miles from the village of Byurakan. The fortress was founded in the 7th century A.D. during the rule of the Kamsarakan princes. It was rebuilt 4 centuries later by Vahram Vachutian Pahlavuni. He added thick stone walls and 3 bastions along the ridge of the Arkhashyan ravine, where there were no natural defenses.

An inscription above the entry to the church within the fortress indicates that it too was built in 1026. The exterior architecture is simple and expressive, crowned by an umbrella shaped cupola.

Epic Armenia Culture & Adventure Route © Monika Newbound

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