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Travel Blog

Soviet Yerevan vs Modern Yerevan

Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, is one of the world’s oldest cities. Being built in 782 BC (as Erebuni)  and having more than one million residents, it is now one of the most attractive and safe cities for visitors.

Yerevan today is a city of contrasts, especially when it comes to architecture. While walking around the city you’ll see lots of old and modern buildings. Though old Yerevan looked quite different once, and even some remained old districts don’t fully pass full feel of it today, still you can visit those parts and discover more about “old and new” city, as residents call it.

Modern buildings in Yerevan increase fast. New building of Circus, hotels, malls, Business centers and new residential buildings – all are built in modernist style. Despite the fact that they are beautiful, people prefer to have in the city old buildings too. The most loved buildings among them are so called “black buildings”, which can now be found in many parts of it (called so because of stone color). Pink buildings are a lot too. They are constructed with stone “tuf” which has pink color, so don’t be surprised if the city is introduced to you as “pink city”.

A little far from the city center Soviet residential buildings can be found. Even today people call them with old names like “Khrushovka” and “Stalinka”. Though they were built in Soviet times, still, so many years after, it is possible to live in there. These buildings are not so high, and pretty comfortable.

There are many outstanding examples of Soviet modernism in Yerevan like tower of “Zvartnots” airport, Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory, cinema “Moscow” building, Karen Demirchyan Sports and Concerts Complex, and so on. Moreover, museums, Yerevan metro, memorials, statues, factories – all of the mentioned were built in Soviet times and most of them are standing nowadays.

Something that could be seen in Soviet Yerevan, and even until 2004 but not now, is tram. Though there are no trams now, still you can see some means of transportation not familiar to you. So called “Gazelles” being one of the major means of transportation are widely used in Yerevan and out of it.

Despite buildings, life is continuously changing and lifestyle in Soviet Yerevan and modern one varies. No matter of what age, people used to visit different cultural places, enjoy evening talks and just spend time together in Soviet city. Modern life in Yerevan is not much alike, though the best lifestyle traditions are kept. Youth prefers to spend evenings not only in clubs and pubs, but also in variety of cultural places. Theatres, cinemas, classical music halls and museums are full of visitors today too. Also, you can see much outdoor activity when enjoying your walk and pleasant Yerevan weather in any season. City center is always full of music, songs and games in the evenings. Yerevan events are so different that can please any visitor with any taste. Whenever in Yerevan, you will always find where to go and how to spend an interesting evening with friends, family or beloved one.

You may be interested if there is still something connecting Soviet and Modern city. The answer is yes, and it’s just people’s kindness and hospitality. You will always be guided if lost or if don’t know the exact direction to somewhere, you’ll be hosted and “forced” to taste everything put on the table, and thus just enjoy Yerevan city as it simply is.