Gegharkunik is the biggest region of RA by its territory. The regional center is Gavar. It has been founded in 1830 by the armenians migrated from the town Bayazet of the western Armenia, in the place of the historical Gavarakan. During the Soviet power the town has been called Nor Bayazet, then- Kamo. In this region you can meet pre-urartian and urartian period fortresses, habitats, ancient places, cuneiform records, etc. There have also been discovered tombs of around 5 thousand years old.
The lake Sevan is wholly located in Gegharkunik region. The second town of the region is Sevan (former Yelenovka) founded in the first half of the XIX century by the sectarians banished from central Russia. The quick development of the town is arranged with its geographical position. It is on the crossroads Yerevan-Idzevan and Yerevan-Gavar highways.
The sites of Gegharkunik region:
Gavar is located on the eastern slope of Geghama Mountains, on the lower basin of Gavaraget. The distance from Yerevan is 98km. Gavar is an ancient residence of Armenia. In the middle ages this residence has been called Gavar, in popular speech Qyavar which is being used till now. The oldest note about the name Gavar is retained in the record on the khachkar of the tomb calling”Dari glukh” dated in 1374. The residence has become a town after the moving of the migrants from Bayazet in 1830. In the geological museum of Gavar are represented interesting canvases, carpets, reproductions of the old residences concerning the history of Armenia and especially of the region, models of the history of the region and Sevan lake.
Hyravank monastical complex is situated on the north-eatern part of Haravank village of Gegharkunik region, on the bank of Sevan lake. The church is retained with the adjacent porch. The name ”Mardaghavnyats” refers to the legend written by the catholicos Ghazar I Dzahketsi, according to which in 1381 during the invasion of Lenktemur, the priest Hovhan from Hayravank transformed thousands of captived Armenians into pigeons and let them free.
It is an armenian monastical complex in the peninsula of Sevan. It has been founded in 305 and the two churches- in 874. The monastery of Sevan is located on the peninsula (formerly it has been an island) has been founded by Gregory the Illuminator. The island used to have a fortress still in the Bronze Age. Here had been a pagan monastery. In the IX century the kings of Syuni have established here. In 874 the daughter of the king Ashot Bagrtuni Mariam had built two churches here- Arakeloc (the small) and Astvatsatsin.
Vanevan is situated on the eastern end of Artsvanist village. In Vanevan had been buried the king Smbat II Bagratuni in 914.