Stepanakert city is the capital of Nagorno Karabakh or Artsakh, as well as the cultural administrative, and economic center of Karabakh. It is located on Artsakh plateau, right at the center of the Republic of Artsakh, and at an average height of 813 meters above sea level. The population of Stepanakert is 54,000.

In 1992 the city’s name was renamed, in honor politician Stepan Shahumian(a leader of the Russian revolution). Stepanakert was founded as a residence, at the beginning of the 19th century. In the same area of Vararakn town (it is still located, at the same place). The first plan of the city was designed by the architect Aleksandr Tamanian.

Sights of Stepanakert

One of the important sightseeing places in Stepanakert is the memorial-monument called “Tatik and Papik” (Grandmother and Grandfather in Armenian) or “We are our mountains” (1967).

It is a large and unique monument symbolizing the vigor and willingness of the locals, comparing them with Artsakh’s mountains. It is considered to be the symbol of the historic Artsakh.

The Artsakh State Museum is located in Stepanakert which has an important collection of ancient artifacts and Christian manuscripts. The Stepanakert's National Gallery was opened in 1982, and Artsakh History Museum opened in 1939. The Memorial Museum of the Martyred Liberators opened in 2002

The Mesrop Mashtots Republican Library was founded in 1924. Many cultural and youth centers were reopened after the independence of Armenia. The cultural palace of the city was named after Charles Aznavour, a worldwide famous Armenian singer. The Vahram Papazyan Drama Theater of Stepanakert was founded in 1932 and in the area of a destroyed church, Saint Gevorg. The city was founded at the end of the 19th century but was destroyed by the Soviet Union.

The only church in the area of Stepanakert is Saint Hakob church which is located in the Hekimian district. It was founded in 2005 and already in 2007, the construction of the church was finished. The founder of Saint  Hakob church was American- Armenian Nerses Yepremian. It was named after the memory of Nerses’s son, Hakob Yepremian.


Gandzasar Monastery

Gandzasar monastery complex is located in Vank town, the Republic of Nagorno Karabakh. The monastery was built in the 10th-13th centuries.

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