There are not so many cities in the world which boast to be older than Rome. One of such cities is Yerevan - the capital of Armenia. Long ago, in 782 BC, King Argishti I from the country of Uratru founded a small fortress-town called as Erebuni. Rome was founded only 29 years after.
However, this city did not grow like Rome, and was an outpost. It had not been mentioned in written sources for 8 centuries, and began to develop only in the early Middle Ages. Its name was transformed to Erivan, and then to Yerevan. To the beginning of XIX century the city became the official capital of Armenia. Today it is a big and modern city.
Yerevan covers an area of 300 sq. km., and places on a volcanic plateau in the Ararat valley. Surrounded by mountains on three sides, the city varies in height from 900 to 1300 meters above the sea level. Features of the relief gave it a peculiar appearance and impacted on urban development. The study of topography, climate and direction of mountain winds became the basis of scientific approach to start building in Yerevan. A. Tamanyan, the academician of architecture worked on this in 1924 and his researches had effect to the construction of the city.
The climate of Yerevan is moderate continental: spring begins in March, the summer is long and dry, the autumn is warm till the mid-November and the winter is mild with a little snow. Perhaps these factors contributed to the occurrence of the city, which all neighboring states tried to capture over 2 millennia.
For centuries Yerevan was a small town and began to rise significantly only in the early XX century, with the advent of the Soviet power. Today its population numbers 1.2 million people. In addition, It always was an important transportation hub and today its role in the Caucasus region has increased. The city has two airports, railway station, highways, passing through it. In addition, being the capital of Armenia, Yerevan is the political, economic, scientific and cultural center of the country.
It is also known that Armenia was one of the first Christian centers in the world. The Church of Peter and Paul was built here in the V century and was demolished in the early XX century. Even the creation of the city some people refer to the biblical stories about Noah: legend says that Noah's ark reached a land here and then Noah founded a settlement on these lands. Nowadays majority of city's habitants professes Christianity and belongs to the Armenian Apostolic Church.
The city has many historical monuments, temples and churches of different eras. Some of the monuments included into the UNESCO World Heritage List. Theaters and museums of Yerevan are an important part of the city culture. Developed infrastructure, beautiful scenery and rich history attract tourists from all over the world, and today the field of tourism in Yerevan is gradually growing up.