MARTOUNI

The territory of the district is 951 square kilometers. The population is 23,500 people.

Martuni province occupies the southeastern part of the Artsakh Republic. In the northwest, it borders with the Askeran province, in the south - Hadrut province. The state border with Azerbaijan runs in the east and northeast of Martuni. Azerbaijan currently occupies the eastern part of the region. Compared to the other areas of Artsakh, Martuni has a more flat landscape; the Varanda River, with its tributary Amaras, flows through its territory.

The territory of the district is 951 square kilometers.  The population is 23,500 people. The provincial center is the city of Martuni, situated 45 km from Stepanakert. In ancient times, there was the historical province of Myus Haband, and then part of the area of Varanda. Various ancient monuments have been preserved here, among which the most impressive ones are; the Amaras (IV-XVII centuries) and Bri Eghtsi monasteries, and the fortress Kusaberd-Akhchkaberd. The Martuni province is also fascinating in that on its territory in the village of Skhtorashen is the largest in the world and one of the oldest plane trees (a genus of trees, lat. Plátanus). The tree is more than 2000 years old, 54 m high, and the trunk coverage at the base is 31.5 m.

Hyunot

Amaras Monastery

The Amaras Monastery is an ancient medieval monastery, a prominent religious and cultural center of medieval Armenia, founded by St. Gregory the Illuminator, thanks to which in 301 Armenia became the first country in the world to adopt Christianity at the state level. It was in Amaras that the author of the Armenian alphabet, Saint Mesrop Mashtots, founded the first Armenian monastery school. In different periods of history, the monastery was repeatedly invaded (by Arabs, Mongols), and in the XIV century (during the period of the Tamerlane invasion), it was demolished. Despite this, it always remained a religious and cultural center with a continuously functioning school, and in the XVII century was rebuilt. In the second half of the XIX century, after the accession of Eastern Armenia to Russia, Amaras was used as a border fortress. In 1848 it was returned to the Armenian Apostolic Church.

 In 1858, a new one was built on the place of the old monastery church.

In May 1991, the complex was severely destroyed by Azerbaijani troops. Currently, the monastery is undergoing restoration work.

 

Skhtorashen sycamore

Just 2 km north of the road you will see the legendary 2-thousand-sycamore "Tnjri". Near the village Skhtorashen stands a giant sycamore that has been issued a certificate of the oldest and tallest tree of the former USSR. Tree trunk hollow has a surface area of 44 square meters, which can easily be accommodated over 100 people. The height of the tree is 54 meters; the shadow of the tree covers 1400 square meters. Don’t forget to take some amazing shots here. So worth of capturing!

Akhchkaberd  (The Girl’s Fortress)

The fortress was built in the 10th century on top of a rocky mountain. It is hard to reach, you can approach it only on one side - along a steep climb through the forest. In those days, there were various attacks from neighbors and some semi-wild tribes, but the Akhchkaberd Fortress proudly defended all battles and never did the enemy’s foot step beyond its walls.

They say, that LenkTemur learnt, that there were a beautiful girl living in the fortress. He sent his soldiers to bring the girl to him. Three of his soldiers kidnapped the girl. A shepherd saw that and followed them. At night, when the soldiers fell asleep, the shepherd killed them and took the girl back. LenkTemur attacked the fortress with an anger, but Armenians living in the fortress, didn’t give up, until LenkTemurm,because of the betrayal of an old lady from the fortress, took the channel of the water coming  to the fortress. The girl was feeling very guilty and throw herself from the fortress to the river. That is why it is called The Girl’s Fortress.Today the fortress is a wonderful place for hiking lovers.

The Martuni region is famous for its excellent vineyards and grapes, pomegranate plantations; the climate is so warm that even palm trees grow here. Martuni district is one of the sunniest areas of Artsakh. Experience every corner of Artsakh!