Dilijan

Nestled in the heart of the forests of northern Armenia, Dilijan is the epitome of quaint. Home to many famous composers, artists and cinematographers, this reclusive town of 23,000 boasts a historic refurbished city center with rows of houses with typical early twentieth century interiors and others displaying handicrafts or musical instruments. This popular vacation destination is like a piece of Switerzerland sequestered within the Armenian highlands.
Several places you should see if you are in Dilijan. Proceed north towards Ijevan, there is a road that reads Hagartsin. This is a beautiful drive to a church complex, composed of three standing churches, one completely ruined one and an old dining room that was for the Armenian kings. Behind one of the churches are the graves of Bagratuni dynasty family members. Going back to Dilijan, another road reads Parz Lich (Clear Lake). It is very muddy but the scenary around the lake, the forest is magnificant for hikes, camping or picnics.
About 3 km W of Dilijan there is a spectacular 11-12c Jukhtak Vank (Church). Ask locals how to get there. From Jukhtak church you can take about 15 min on foot hike to Matosavank. This is another ruined church complex around Dilijan town. It is believed to be built around 1247. These two churches are both located in a forested area (in Dilijan National Reserve), so the surrounding, the scenary and the atmosphere is worth a visit.

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