Etchmiadzin

Cathedral

This is the main cathedral of the Armenian Apostolic Church and the seat of the Catholicos of All Armenians (303-484, 1441-present).

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St. Gayaneh Church

This church is one of the main religious sites of the Armenian Apostolic Church, commissioned by Catholicos Ezr I Parazhnakertsi in 630 and erected on the site of an early 4th c. chapel where St. Gayaneh and two companions where martyred.

Built from polished tufa, St. Gayaneh is a central-nave domed basilica with two annexes and four pylons. The south-eastern annex grants an entry to the virgin Gayaneh's vaulted tomb, which lies under the high altar.

St. Gayaneh is considered a masterpiece among similar architectural monuments. The walls and the roof were renovated in 1652. The three-arch gavit/hall, added in 1683, has liturgical tables at the south and north edges and chapels dedicated to apostles Peter and Paul. 

The gavit/hall later served as a sepulcher for Catholicoi. The wall surrounding the monastery is also dated to a later period. Abbot Vahan Basta­miants had the monastery renovated in 1866-1882; the western arched gate, the residential buildings for the abbot and the priests, the school and the publishing house were added in those years.

St. Gayaneh is an early combination of three-nave basilica and central-dome church. This combi­nation later became highly popular in Armenian architec­ture. 

In 2000 the church was listed among UNESCO World Heritage Sites with the name “Cathedral and Churches of Etchmiadzin and the Archaeological Site of Zvartnots”.


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    Ticket price Locals: 500 AMD; Foreigners: 1500 AMD

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    How to reach From Yerevan take M5 highway and drive 21.4 km to north west and you will reach the Etchmiadzin. The trip will take approximately 25 minutes.

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