Ecovillage Astghashen

Astghashen ecovillage is located in Askeran district of Nagorno-Karabakh Republic. The village is 12 km west from Askeran district center, 800 m above sea level. The whole territory of the village is 1595 ha, the population is 501 people. Astghashen ecovillage got its name from pentagon-star-shaped fossil sea lilies, which you can see  near the village in the sedimentary rock outcrops. Their age dates to 161-175 million years ago, the Jurassic period of the Mesozoic era, when there was a Mesozoic sea in that territory. In Astghashen you may find the remains of sea lilies, seashells, sea hedgehogs and other sea fossils under your feet. Astghashen is one of the most unique areas in the world which has such geological fossils. Serious research has not been done yet, and the great part of the mystery of the village is still unknown and needs to be discovered. In the village there are such shrines as “St. Gevorg” church, “Frangyulats”, “Kapenkhach”, “Chmanenkhach”, “Yere Nahatak”. One of the most memorable moments of the village is the visit of Khrimyan Hayrik to “St. Gevorg” church in 1898. The village has a secondary school named after Jan Andryan, a culture house, an art school and a clinic.

Ecovillage Patara

Patara ecovillage is located in the Askeran district of Nagorno-Karabakh Republic. The village is 19.5 km west from Askeran district center, 904 m from above sea level. The territory of the village is 1604 ha, the population is 850 people. The old names of the village are “Ptretsik”, then “Badara”. There are 2 interpretations about the name: it comes from the word “walls”or “liturgy”. The material evidence about the village starts from the 5th century BC. In the middle ages Patara village was over-populated, the evidence of which can serve many monasteries, churches, cemeteries located there. In the surroundings of the village there are also many historical and cultural monuments such as “Kusanats-Kendak Tun”, “Kusanats-Meydan-Shlorut”, “Tandzu Bagh” and “Patara-Siptak Vegh”. “Okht Eghtsi” (7 churches), “Tsera Nahatak” church, “Odzkan” church, “Amenaprkich” church, “Badarayi Berd” fortress, “Darpasut Eghtsi”, “Khravand” or “St. Hovhannes Mkrtich” church, “St. Stepanos” church. At present, there are 200 historical and cultural monuments in this area. The river network is quite dense in this territory. Patara river with its Pitsi, Patara, Khravand and other streams is well known and there are waterfalls and widened sites of the watercourse on them. Patara is also known for its natural monuments: “Kapen Tsov”, “Salin Tsov”, “Sev Tsov”, “Krqaren Tsov”, “Pulur Tsov”, “Sirinin Tsov”, “Shrshran”, “Dzuknen Verj”, “Khravand” etc.

Ecovillage Khndzristan

Khndzristan  ecovillage is located in the Askeran district of Nagorno-Karabakh Republic. It is 18 km from Askeran district center, 910 m above sea level. The territory of the village is 1545 ha, population is 814 people. The previous names of the village were Khanzrestan, Khdzoratun, Khdzorestan. The inhabitants of the village explain that there were many apple trees in the village, so the name of the village comes from the word “khndzor” which means “apple”. In Khndzristan there is “St. Astvatsatsin” church (late middle ages), in the graveyard of which you can see the cemeteries of the meliks, “Hangats Egtsi” church, “Mets Qerts” monument, many cross-stones (XIII – XVII centuries), ancient village ruins (XIII century). One of the well known trails to the fortress “Kachaghakaberd” passes through this village. The National hero of NKR Ashot Ghulyan (”Bekor” or “Askolka”) was born here. The surroundings of the village is full of forests and springs. The population is busy with farming, animal husbandry, cultivation of grain and vegetables. It has a secondary school, kindergarten and clinic. Before the war, there were also silk and oil producing factories. Since 2014, the village has become birthplace of “EcoKhndzristan” ecovillage network.