Hrazdan River (Ildaruni in Urartian) or Zangu originates from Lake Sevan, flows in a general southwest direction, passes through Gegharkunik, Kotayk Regions, Yerevan city, Ararat Region and flows into Araks at an altitude of 820 m above sea level.

It is 141 km long. The area of ​​the basin is 2650 km2 (without Lake Sevan). In the upper stream, causing eddies, it flows to the west for about 20 km, in the middle stream it passes through a narrow and deep gorge (120-150 m) and alternates with valleys and lawns. Hrazdan produces springs near the settlements of Arzni, which are used for water supply.

The total fall of the river is about 1100 m. There are about 340 rivers in the system, 25 of which have a length of more than 10 km, 3 – up to 50 km. Under natural conditions, the feeding of the Hrazdan River is mostly underground, overflows are observed in summer and autumn.

Sevan, Hrazdan, Arzni, Kanaker, Yerevan HPPs, a number of canals and the Yerevan lake were built on Hrazdan.

On the coast of Hrazdan is Arzni Sanatorium, the cities of Sevan, Hrazdan, Charentsavan, Lusakert, Yerevan. Bridges of Victory (1945), Hrazdan (1956), Nurnus (1981), Davtashen (2000), Karmir (1679, Yerevan) were built on Hrazdan. The oldest of the bridges is the Red Bridge.

The banks of the river have been inhabited since the Old Stone Age (Arzni, Yerevan Caves, etc.). In Urartian times and in the Middle Ages, several canals were passed from Hrazdan: Rusa (tunnel), Dalma, Abuhayat, etc. Urartian Teyshebain (Red Hill) fortress was built in the Hrazdan River gorge, St. Astvatsatsin Church (XI century, Bjni).

Bjni fortress (10-11th century) founded by the Pahlavunis is one of the outstanding forts built in the gorge. The fort is protected on three sides by steep rocks, and towards the Hrazdan river by a pyramidal retaining wall-wall, which is half-ruined now. The ruler of Bjni fortress was Vasak Pahlavuni.


The article was compiled based on observations and materials collected by the ArmLand club.

Author of photos: Artyom Martirosyan