Armenians like to say that heaven must be like the countryside around Dilijan: spectacular mountains, forests and springs. The town itself is filled with rustic houses, carpet weavers and furniture shops. Also in town are the ruins of two small 13th-century monasteries (Matosavank and Jukhtak Vank), which face each other across a ravine. Day trips can be made to the Agartsin Gorge and nearby ancient monastery complex (1,000 years old), of the same name, located in one of the loveliest parts of the country. Farther up the highway is Goshavank Monastery, and then Makaravank Monastery, both well worth the effort to visit. A picnic at the lake called Barz Lij and lunch at one of the places north of town serving fresh trout is almost obligatory. 75 mi/120 km northeast of Yerevan.

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