Hovhannavank Monastery
Hovhannavank Monastery
4.5
Points of Interest & LandmarksReligious SitesChurches & Cathedrals
Monday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
About
Duration: 1-2 hours
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Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.


4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles38 reviews
Excellent
29
Very good
8
Average
1
Poor
0
Terrible
0

Areg G
Yerevan, Armenia188 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2023 • Family
This one really surprised us, religious energy is so strong here, also it’s location is breathtaking, right in the edge of mountain. Also there is cave under the church wich is not usually.
Written 12 January 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Brun066
Florence, Italy13,099 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2023
Like the nearby (5 kms) Saghmosavank, Hovhannavank monastery is also built on the edge of the "dzor" (canyon) of the Kasagh stream.
The dzors are a typical Armenian geomorphological feature: deep incisions in the high volcanic plateaus, very frequent here. Compared to the plateaus, where "normal" life takes place, the dzors are alien, disturbing places, a sort of "anti-world", where mysterious chthonic powers reign, where those who venture there risk going mad (see for example the poem "Saqo from Lori" by the famous writer Hovhannes Tumanyan, 1869-1923)
It's therefore understandable that some monasteries were built in a "suspended" position over these abysses, as if to exorcise them.
Apart from this scenic and disturbing location, the monastery itself shows a particularly valuable architecture. It appears enclosed on three sides by a defense wall. Inside the enclosure you can admire a "basilica", famous for its antiquity; even it is said to have been founded by Saint Gregorius the Illuminator, therefore from the 4th century. However, elements from the 5th and 6th centuries seem to remain in it, albeit restored.
Adjacent to the basilica is the “St. Garabed Kathoghike Church”, built in the first quarter of the 13th century (as well as Saghmosavank) by prince Vache Vachutyan. The usual "gavit" (narthex), with elaborate and evocative shapes, gives access to both churches.
The entire monastery complex is decorated with very fine bas-reliefs, both of sacred representations and abstract motifs; including the ever-present “katchkar” (flowery crosses).
The presence of a well-preserved "scriptorium", in which ancient manuscripts were copied until the early modern age, is peculiar to this monastery.
We believe that these few hints are sufficient to convince the reader of the importance of this place, and of the opportunity to experience it.
Written 4 August 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Zuevy
Moscow, Russia1,455 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2019
It is beautifully located just above a large gorge. Well preserved for his age. Inside it looks dignified and majestic, though a little gloomy. The medieval spirit perfectly continues to live here today. It's not easy to get there, but the monastery is worth it.
Written 23 September 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jincognito
Gainesville, FL643 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2019 • Couples
Tucked away down country lanes, the monastery is unspoilt, quiet, has great views and typical Armenian monastery architecture. Clearly worth a detour.
Written 3 August 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Kristine B
Kingston, Jamaica856 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2019 • Solo
I visited during the height of the summer heat. The church itself if beautiful; the history is literally seeping from the stones (you’ll see what I mean in the main chapel). The best part is the view of the gorge and nearby Mt. Ara, though. So dramatic! During my visit it was beautiful, despite the brown dryness of everything and the heat. You don’t need to stay for more than 30 mins. With a good guide, you can learn all there is to know about this building during that time, plus take all the photos of inside and outside that you want.
Written 22 July 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

John Nicolaides
London, UK233 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2018 • Solo
A beautiful, Spiritual and peaceful place with stunning views of the Kasagh gorge; combine it with a visit to the nearby Saghmosavank monastery!
Written 14 September 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Mylene_Laurent
Sharjah, United Arab Emirates261 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2018 • Couples
Beautiful church / monastery. The setting is peaceful, the building itself is in great condition with a beautiful gavit. The scenery around the church is really great with stunning views of the Kazakh's Gorge.
Written 18 August 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ricardo B
Miami, FL2,818 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2017 • Friends
This monastery and it sister one in the gorge are absolutely worth de visit, lovely location, great views and amazing architecture. A must
Written 26 May 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

PatrickM_Travels
Almaty, Kazakhstan1,788 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2016 • Friends
This is my second visit to Hovhannavank and my second review. Out of the many, many monasteries in Armenia, this is one of my favorite. The way it looms over the canyon is magnificent. The monastery was refurbished some time in the last 5-10 years and now it is nearly flawless -- as good as new -- but while still retaining all of its historical qualities. We arrived at about 10:30AM on a Saturday and the door was locked. There were some old ladies selling fresh fruit near the carpark and we asked them how to get in. They gave our driver the cell phone number of someone who could come open the monastery. We called and she arrived within 3 minutes! I highly recommend this monastery.
Written 28 February 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

soliloquy_
154 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2016 • Solo
This is probably my favorite in Armenia. The view of Mt. Ararat and the little canyon covered in snow is stunning! I would suggest everyone to not just marvel at the monastery but walk past it, you'll see more scenic view. I heard it's a river when not covered with snow which means one can enjoy this place no matter what the season is.
Written 10 February 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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