Ashtarak

Ashtarak is a town in the Aragatsotn Province, located northwest of the capital Yerevan, from 20 km. It is the administrative centre of the Aragatsotn province.

The town has Karmavor church, built in the VII-th century. The temple has a modest architecture but is considered one of the most ancient and important buildings of the town, it is the only monument in Armenia, tiled roof of which has survived to the present days.
Another interesting building is a dilapidated Tsiranavor basilica built in the V-th century, also Spitakavor Monastery in few steps from it (XIII-XIV centuries) and the Church of St. Marine (1281).

Not far from the town is the highest mountain in Armenia – Aragats (north summit 4090 m). It is a popular place among lovers of trekking. In general, the tourists practice climbing on the south summit (3800 m), but those with good training also climb the highest one(video on Youtube). Climbing usually starts from a beautiful small lake Kari, located on slopes of the mountains. The area around the lake is the perfect place for camping.