The town Stepanavan, the jewel of Lori marz, is located in the north of Armenia, where the beauty of natural surroundings harmoniously intertwines with man-made monuments. Here one can see the ruins of Lori Berd (aka Lori Fortress), one of Armenia's greatest medieval historical monuments, the Stepanavan Dendropark (an arboretum established in 1933), the famous Hnevank Monastery complex, the picturesque Dzoraget river canyon and the 200-meter-long bridge that crosses it.
Stepanavan is one of Armenia's popular resort centers.
Stepanavan is located on a vast plateau, on the right bank of the Dzoraget river, surrounded by thick forests and green mountains. The town encompasses an area of 16.6 km2 with a population of about 17 thousand people. Stepanavan lies at an elevation of 1400 meters above sea level. The climate in Stepanavan is moderately humid, the air is fresh and pure, the drinking water is clean and safe. Winter here is snowy, without severe frosts, summer is cool and sunny, spring and autumn are comparatively rainy, however mild. The average annual temperature is 6.60C. The average temperature in January is -4.20 C, in July - + 16.70 C. The average precipitation is 683 mm.
Stepanavan is one of the towns of Armenia which does not require many resources or efforts for planting greenery. It is surrounded by natural forests. Plenty of fruit orchards and gardens grown by the town residents and shade trees along the streets embrace the town with their green arms. There are significant reserves of natural building materials nearby.
Stepanavan was known in ancient times as a settlement. In medieval times the town's area together with Lori Berd became the center of the Tashir-Dzoraget Kingdom. However, subsequently the settlement was destroyed and plundered, and its name was changed to Jalaloghly. In 1924 the town was renamed Stepanavan after the famous political leader Stepan Shaumyan.
As a matter of fact, Stepan Shaumyan, who had visited many countries, compared the nature and climate of Stepanavan with those of Switzerland.
In Soviet times, within a short period Stepanavan developed and grew to become not a large town, but became one of Armenia's beautiful towns and holiday resorts.
The town’s population increased several times across fifty years. Actually, the development of the town was impacted by its holiday resort status. However, in 1988 Stepanavan was damaged significantly by an earthquake that devastated cities, towns and villages in northern Armenia.
Having overcome the aftermath of the earthquake, along with other towns and cities of Armenia, and having experienced the effects of the economic crisis of the 1990s, Stepanavan again embarked upon a path of development. The town was rebuilt, and extended to the left bank of the Dzoraget river. Economic infrastructure, cultural institutions and parks were improved and reconstructed.
The town’s geographical position and elevation above sea level, its fresh and pure air free from dust, the abundance of trees and flowers, sunny days and cold water, monuments of art and architecture, modern comfortable hotels and resorts provide conditions for unforgettable summer vacations in Stepanavan.