Sights of Turkey: Ani

The ancient capital of the Armenian Annie Kingdom, Ani Today it is an almost empty triangular plateau 45 km south-east of Kars, between the mountains of the Orange and the Armenian border. Now this, once the most beautiful city of Transcaucasia, known as "City of thousands and one church", represents only lonely towering among crushed alpine desert fragments of ancient structures. However, even despite this, he is deservedly considered one of the excellent examples of the spiritual and military architecture of its time.


Here you can see individual sections of the non-extended Urban Wall, Whose towers built in the X century and strongly destroyed, even now look impressive; Gates Aslanlas; Church of the Savior (Prikrit, 1034-1036.); Church of St. Gregory Enlightener (Tigran-Honenz, 1010 g.) with its amazing frescoes – the only, preserved in this Dead city; female Monastery of the Mother of God (Kusanac, XIII in.) with a tiny church; Two more churches in honor St. Gregory – Abighampet (1040 g.) and Gaggik (998 g.), as well as the so-called Kervancerai, And in fact – the Church of the Holy Apostles (Arak-Eloce, XI in.). The city’s grains can be considered graceful Chief or Big Cathedral Ani (989-1010.), interesting, including, and the fact that from the Armenian side, to which it is literally handed over to hand, it is clearly visible to its exact copy, erected in the XXI century.

  • Church of St. Gregory
  • City Walls Ani
  • Cathedral in Ani, in the background – border with Armenia
  • The ruins of the temple of Zvartnots

Before completing the tour on the inner perimeter of former city walls, it is worth entering the so-called Palace of Seldjuks – The only undoubtedly Islamic building of Ani (and the only carefully restored, by the way), towering on the northwestern tip of the serf tree. A little to the West, next to the Cathedral, stretches the carefully excavated region, obviously in the Middle Ages, which was a city street – now you can see fragments of shops and residential buildings. The construction known as the construction is also towers Menzhehir Kamya and posed by the earliest Seljuk mosque in Anatolia, although her red-black stone masonry and mosaic ceiling indicate much more ancient roots.

In the southern corner of the ancient Ani there are internal citadel, or Джj kale (access to its territory is closed), and the monastery Kyz Kilissey, spectacular rumor river gorge. You can also visit the Seljuk Terms, the ruins of the medieval bridge across the Akhuryan River (Arpa) or see some excellent examples "Khachkarov" (literally – "Cross stone", Typically Armenian form of cultured stone thread) and even fragments of the press for processing grapes or olives (in the VII-XII centuries, the climate in these parts was significantly softer than now).

When visiting Ani, it should be borne in mind that whole areas of this border area are closed for visiting and gendarme, continuously patrolling ruins, can prohibit access to a particular monument. However, they are obliged to clarify the tourist the location of all forbidden zones, so conflicts usually do not occur. Right on the northern outskirts of the ancient city lies a small village of Anica, in which you can have a snack or hire a taxi to Kars.

Sights of Turkey Ani

Around Ani

Many ancient churches and locks can be detected in the immediate vicinity of Ani. Get to them is the easiest way to car or taxi. Near Oguzla (Oguzlu) you can see the ruins of a massive church x century. South, near the village Bayraktar (Bayraktar), there is a less damaged Karmir-WANK Church (in Turkish Transcription – Kyzyl Kilis, XIII in.), and even closer to Ani – the beautiful monastery complex ORCOMOS (Koshe Vank, X in., Currently, access is prohibited).

Closer to Karsa near the village Kozludzha (Kozluca), two churches of Benigar – Big (monastic) church was founded in 1010-1012 by Armenian Prince Smbat, and the smaller at least 3 years older. Herself Kozludja is known for its salt caves and quite good in local standards with restaurants. And the south can be found to detect the Armenian-Byzantine Fortress Magazbert, dominant over the S-shaped bend of the Akhuryan River. Built in the X-XI century, the fortress was taken by storming Osmans in 1579, thoroughly modernized and still is a fairly impressive complex.

And if you move away from Ani towards the car, you can freely get acquainted with the whole "Constellation" No less interesting historical structures, among which the Church of St. Sarkis, or HTskonk (1029 g.), as well as the Monastery of Beshkinis (everything near the town Dihor, Or Tech in Armenian), Unique Cathedral Complex Mren (639-640.) near the village of Karabag (21 km south-east of Digor), the most beautiful Georgian monastery of the XIII century near Chengillille (Cengilli, 47 km southeast Sarykamysh), as well as the ruins of the fortified Armenian city of Hechvan (Gtebank) closer to Karsa.

Northwest Ani

From Kars, three routes lead northwest to Artvin. Moving along them, you can get acquainted with such interesting objects as Childyr (Cildir Golu) – The most alpine lake in Turkey (Church of the water mirror lies almost 2000 meters) and the refuge of many thousands of birds, Georgian churches of the XI-XIII centuries in Dogruyole (Jala in Georgian), Guliju (Gulebakan) and Gölbelen (URT) on the shores of the lake, the ruins of an ancient fortified village near Acjakale (AKCEKALE), beautiful old bridge over Kuru and massive citadel opposite him near the city Ardagan (Ardahan). There are already lands who have once belonged to Christian princes, therefore, the number of characteristic monuments as it moves to the North rapidly increases. And although now in order to see the most interesting of them, you will have to use an SUV, many definitely deserve efforts spent on it, because even in Georgia itself and Armenia will often not find such ancient monuments of the BagratyDew epoch. By the way, it should be noted that a long-term "war" For definition "True accessories" these churches of one or another confession provoked by obviously political factors that do not have any attitude to history. Therefore names "Georgian" or "Armenian" In relation to these monuments should be considered conditional, because during their construction, there is no rigid separation of local culture on "National clusters" It was not in mom.

The most interesting of the Christian monuments of the region can include the complex of the monastery in the town Bagbasy (Bagbas, 961-1000. – The first one of the monasteries built by David Kiroskalate, the ruler of the Tao region), a unique monastery complex Oshkvank (Oshka, 963-973.) in the town Chamlyamach, The origin of which is furiously arguing Georgian and Armenian historians (the so-called Oshkskaya Bible, written here, is still kept in the Afonov Mountain), the impressive Church of the Virgin Mary (VIII-XI centuries.) in the mountain village Ishhan (ISHAN), Churches in Paryhal and Hahek (X-XII centuries.), two citadel in Olf and the Armenian Church Banak (VII in.) North of the city.

Reviews and studies of trips

Ancient Ani. A town that does not exist

One of the most interesting and non-trivial places in the east of Turkey is the ruins of the ancient Armenian capital Ani, a magnificent and distinctive city in a distant past. Read more →

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Ani – a monument of Armenian "Golden Century" on the Turkish side of the border

On Ani, the largest and most rich in the once Armenian capital, the ruins of which, after the concessions of Turkey, the Karsian region were literally in meters from Armenian territory, but cut off from it the border river and barbed wire. Read more →

Sights of Turkey Ani

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