Noravank monastery complex — the pearl of Armenian religious architecture. Located 120 km from Yerevan, it attracts tourists with churches from the 13th century on the background of unearthly landscapes — the steep red rocks of the gorge of the ARPA river. Two magnificent churches and a chapel, numerous stone steles with images of a cross and stunning views of the beautiful countryside are the hallmarks of the Foundation. Yerevan travel agencies offer a wide range of sightseeing in Noravank, often with a visit to Khor Virap.
An additional nice feature is the spectacular restaurant with views of the monastery and cliffs. Church of the Holy virgin Mary is the most magnificent building of the Foundation. Here we should pay attention to the remarkable beauty of the cone-shaped dome resting on a circular colonnade, and the unusual staircase leading to the chapel on the second floor. Over both entrances of the Church there is a bas-reliefs depicting the virgin and child with archangels and Christ with figures of apostles Peter and Paul.
In the Church of St. John the Baptist, you should definitely see the richly decorated tomb of Prince Orbelian, the architectural elements of the Central West entrance (especially the ornament and the image of the virgin) and an unusual depiction of God the Father with huge almond-shaped eyes and a head of Adam in his left hand. The chapel of St. Gregory is interesting in the first place a tombstone with a picture of a half-human half-pololu 1300, and here is see figure crosses khachkars with pigeons and eight-pointed stars.According to legend, Noravank monastery had once held a fragment of the true cross with the blood of the Savior, purchased by the monks unknown to the traveler. Subsequently, the relic was lost.