Amberd Fortress

Amberd Fortress town-stronghold was erected in the historical Province of Aragatsotn, presently 7 km north-west from Byurakan village of Ashtarak Region of Aragatsotn Province of RA. It is located on the southern slope of Mount Aragats, at the junction point of the Arkashen and Amberd Rivers, on a triangular cape. The exact date of Amberd’s foundation is unknown. Some scholars relate its foundation to the Cyclopean period and the others — to the Uratian and early medieval periods. According to the results of the excavations and historical-archeological researches, the stronghold of Amberd is dated at the X‒XIII cc.

Judging by historical sources, the construction of Amberd was started by the Kamsarakan Princes, in the VII c. In the X c. the stronghold belonged to the Pahlavuni Princes and was one of the important military-defensive strong points. Thanks to its natural position and defensive structures, it had a reputation of an impregnable stronghold. One of the responsible roles of Ani City’s defensive ring was given to it.

  • Hike in Amberd Fortress / Արշավ դեպի Ամբերդ
  • Amberd Fortress / Ամբերդ ամրոց / Крепость Амберд
  • Amberd - Arkashen Canyon / Ամբերդ - Արքաշենի կիրճ
  • Amberd - Ամբերդ - Амберд
  • The church of Vahramashen from Amberd
  • Ամբերդի ավերակները / Ruins of Amberd
  • Access to Amberd / Մուտք դեպի Ամբերդ
  • Autumn Amberd / Աշնանային Ամբերդ
  • View from Amberd / Տեսարան Ամբերդից

Photo By: Artur Martirosyan

Castle — it was concluded from the results of the researches of the ruins of the basalt-built complex, located in the high-positioned place of the town-stronghold, that it had three storeys, in some places four storeys with inter-storey overhead covers made of logs, and was repeatedly reconstructed and reinforced.

Bath-house — is situated at the castle and at the gate of the Arkashen. It was erected from smoothly hewn stones and had an underground system of heating. This remarkable monument has a rectangular plan with a cloak-room, located successively along the longitudinal axis, a swimming–hall and a heating system. Traces of frescos are noticeable on the wall of one of the rooms.

Chapel — is located at a distance of about 9 km from the bath-house. It is supposed that the chapel was erected no sooner than the X c.

  • Arkashen Canyon / Hatis Tour
  • Amberd - Vahramashen Church
  • Amberd / Ամբերդ / Амберд
  • Amberd / Ամբերդ / Амберд
  • Amberd - Arkashen River / Ամբերդ - Գետ Արքաշեն
  • Amberd / Ամբերդ / Амберд
  • Amberd / Ամբերդ / Амберд
  • Amberd Bath / Ամբերդի բաղնիք

Photo By: Artur Martirosyan

The Cathoghike (Vahramashen) — the Church of Vahramashen, constructed in 1026, under Vahram Pahlavuni’s patronage, is situated at the wall of Arkashen, in the high-positioned central place of the town-stronghold. The church has a domed, cruciform structure. The praying-hall, with the main apse of the eastern side and the vestries of the 4 corners, is included in the rectangular plan. Inwardly it is round, outwardly the 12 faceted drum is adorned with a pair of pilasters and is covered with an umbrella-shaped calotte. The latter is noteworthy and it is the first example of such an overhead cover. Inside of the church, on the wall, is the construction inscription. The exterior architecture of the church is plain and unornamented.