Armenia: Noravank Monastery

Noravank Monastery is one of the most spectacular monasteries in a country with several dozen of them. Noravank was built in the 13th century on top of a spectacular mountain gorge of sheer red cliffs. The monastery is famous for its double-storey Surb Astvatsatsin (Holy Mother of God) church which has narrow stone steps leading to the second floor. The church is spectacularly decorated with inscriptions and engraving inside and out. Like many Armenian churches – it’s very dark, cool and eerily simple inside. The complex has a second church – Surb Karapet Church – just as spectacular as the bigger one.