Dadivank Monastery, Handaberd Fortress , Karvachar, Zuar

Price – 280 USD eq. 140 000 AMD (for minimum 10 person)

Karvachar District

Qarvajar (3)

The entire region is now under the control of Armenian forces who call the western half Karvajar. The eastern half is part of Nagorno-Karabakh, making up part of the province of Martakert.

The Armenian name of the district is Karvachar , which corresponds to the ancient district of Vaykunik, one of 12 cantons of Artsakh(historical Nagorno-Karabakh). It was also known as Upper-Khachen or Tsar (after its chief town) and was ruled by one of the branches of the House of Khachen, who held it until the Russian conquest of the Karabakh region in the early 19th century.
As a result of the Nagorno-Karabakh War, the area was taken by Armenian forces in 1992. Subsequently the Azeri population fled the region.
Karvachar is rich in important Armenian cultural monuments, close to 750, which include monasteries, churches, chapels, fortresses, khachkars and inscriptions. The most important of them is the monastery of Dadivank.
Qarvajar (5) Qarvajar (2)
The district was made into the Shahumyan Region, one of the 8 regions of NKR. The region remains the least populated of the NKR regions with a total population of 2,800. The town of Karvachar is home to 500 people.

Dadivank Monastery

Dadivank Monastery (also Khutavank) is the largest monastic complex in Artsakh-Karabakh and one of true masterpieces of Armenian medieval architecture.
It is located in the northwestern part of Martakert district of the Nagorno Karabakh Republic, on the territory of Artsakh’s historical province of Upper Khachen.

Monastery_Dadivank_3 Monastery_Dadivank_7
According to the legend, the monastery was founded at the end of the 1st century AD and named after one of apostle Judes disciples, St. Dadi, who martyred preaching Christianity in the Eastern Territory of Armenia.
Dadivank was first mentioned in medieval chronicles in the 9th century. The monastic complex of Dadivank consists of the Memorial Cathedral (Katoghike), Church of the Holy Virgin, Chapel, Memorial Bell-Tower and several auxiliary buildings.
In the 5th century the temple became the residence of the Bishop of Aghvan, while afterwards it was turned into one of the most significant educational and enlightening centres of that region.

Monastery_Dadivank_1 Monastery_Dadivank_4
The central building of the monastery, Memorial Cathedral, was erected in the year 1214 by the Queen Arzou of Haterk. The interior walls of the Memorial Cathedral are richly decorated with frescoes.
Part of a large inscription in Armenian, which covers the entire entrance wall of the Cathedral is written «I, Arzou-Khatoun, obedient servant of Christ … wife of King Vakhtang, ruler of Haterk and all Upper Khachen, with great hopes built this holy cathedral on the place where my husband and sons rest in peace … My first-born Asan martyred for his Christian faith in the war against the Turks, and, three years later, my younger son Grigor also joined Christ … Completed in the year 663 of the Armenian calendar».
According to the ancient scripts, the remains of St. Dadi were buried in the yard of one of the temples of the monastic complex. After recent archaeological excavations the remains of the Armenian Saint were found and blessed by His Grace Archbishop Barkev Martirossian, the primate of the diocese of Artsakh.

Handaberd Fortress

Handaberd fortress fortress in Karvachar region of Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh) Republic.
Handaberd fortress is located between villages of Chapni and Ghanlikyand, on right bank of Leo river, 600 meters south of the river, on the hill of a mountain covered completely covered by forest. It is located on the level of 1665m over sea. The only way to the fortress is available by narrow path from south-western side and up the hill, the path passes around and comes to the gates from north side. There is Handaberd Monastery not far from the fortress. Also in 2004 a village of Knaraberd was build in the canyon down the fortress.

Handaberd (3) Handaberd
According to Movses Kaghankatvatsi, lord of northern regions of Artsakh prince of Armenian Aranshahik family, son of Sahl Smbatyan – Atrnerseh built the fortress of Handu in second half of 9th century.
Atrnerseh passed away in 870s, while for participating anti-Arab movements his residence Samara was occupied by Arab Bugha commander in 854, so the fortress of Handaberd must be built before 854.



Zuar (2) Zuar

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