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An update from Evaneos

Vorotnavank (Armenia)

Practical information on Vorotnavank

  • Viewpoint
  • River
  • Place or Religious Monument
  • Place or Historical Monument
5 / 5 - One review
How to get there
Fifteen minutes from Shaki by car; 20 minutes from Goris
When to go
All year round
Minimum stay
One day

Reviews of Vorotnavank

Nicolas Landru Seasoned Traveller
106 written opinions

This superb monastery in the very beautiful Vorotan Valley is one of Syunik's main historic monuments. Sitting with pride of place in its elevated position at the heart of a bare mountain landscape, it is both a magnificent architectural achievement and a quite stunning site.

My suggestion:
Head a little upriver from Vorotan and visit another man-made structure, a more modern one in this case: the Shamb reservoir and dam – very impressive!
My review

In my opinion, Vorotnavank is the key thing to see when visiting Syunik. It's really a quite remarkable site! The churches of this 10th and 11th century monastery are veritable jewels of sacred art in their own right, as are the graves and tombstones in the attached cemetery. I was particularly impressed with the colours of the large stones from which the churches are built, with shades of black, brown, pink and ochre all combining together to form a highly impressive pallet of tones.

And the monastery is also located in a wonderful setting: it sits like some great eyrie above the Vorotan Gorge, which is wide, open and airy here and resembles a natural amphitheatre. The complexity of the mountainous landscapes, with a succession of overlapping massifs, their summits arid and rocky, lends exceptional depth to the whole panorama.

When I was visiting Vortanavank, I never tired of admiring the natural spectacle of the surrounding scenery around the Vorotan gorges. It is especially impressive when you make your way to the monastery from the road, which crosses the plateau, and see the canyon for the first time upon reaching the promontory on which the monastery stands. I advise you to go down into the gorge to see and admire the physical appearance of the site from below.