Welcome to Sardarapat
About 10km past the small city of Armavir (Hoktemberyan), in the orchards and farms of the Ararat Plain, stands the venerated war memorial site of Sardarapat. It was here in May 1918 that the forces of the first Armenian republic under Zoravar (General) Andranik turned back the Turkish invaders and saved the country from a likely annihilation. Built in 1968 with statues of giant bulls, a 35m stone bell-tower shrine to the fallen, five eagle statues built of tuff and a memorial wall, the site puts an Armenian twist on Soviet war memorials. Nationalist Armenians treat a visit here as a kind of pilgrimage. The nearby museum has relics from the battle itself in the first hall, as well as exhibits of items from the Neolithic Age up to the Middle Ages. Upstairs there is a treasure trove of carpets, jewellery, ceramics and handicrafts, the sum of which represents the country’s best ethnography collection – a celebration of Armenian culture, survival and life.