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The world’s longest 5.7-kilometer ropeway called “Wings of Tatev” opened in Armenia on October 16 (photo). It will lead to the medieval Tatev Monastery located in the Tatev village of Syunik region, southern Armenia. The ropeway that can carry a visitor to the Monastery in 12 minutes will also be included in the Guinness Book of Records.

Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan, President of Nagorno-Karabakh Republic Bako Sahakyan, Prime Minister Tigran Sargsan, Catholicos of All Armenians Karekin II, public figures and numerous guests from abroad attended the opening ceremony.  

“We were not pursuing a goal to surprise everyone by building the world’s longest ropeway,” Serzh Sargsyan said addressing the guests. First of all it has major importance for nearby settlements and development of Armenia’s southern regions, he stressed. According to him, construction of the Tatev ropeway will give a considerable impetus to economic, cultural and spiritual development. It is an excellent example of cooperation between state and private sector. The Armenian President expressed gratitude to Ruben Vardanyan, who was the mover of the project, as well as all those who rendered assistance and workers implementing the project.

“Tatev Church is one of the most competitive endeavors of time. To be competitive in the international market, we go studying in other countries, but there are lessons to be learnt in Armenia. Tatev University was one of the most competitive scientific institutions and St. Grigor was one of the prominent thinkers in due time,” the President said.

As correspondent reports from Tatev, white doves were released, symbolizing peace and prosperity, after Catholicos of All Armenians Karekin II had uttered a prayer.

The construction of “Wings of Tatev” lasted 11 months. The project was implemented by National Competitiveness Fund of Armenia. A great number of sponsors financed this unprecedented project, however Armenian entrepreneur Ruben Vardanyan’s donation, U.S. $28m is noteworthy.

The U.S. $ 50m project will be of great significance for development of tourism in Armenia.

If a successful PR campaign is launched, the ropeway will attract thousands of tourists to Armenia. The ropeway will have two carriages, each of them intended for 215 people.

The Monastery of Tatev is a 9th century monastery of the Armenian Apostolic Church located in south-east of Armenia, near Tatev village, 280 km far from Yerevan. Translated from old Armenian (grabar) Tatev means “give wings” or “fly”.

It was founded in 9th century and was a political center of Syunik kingdom, one of the major educational and scientific centers of Armenia (14-15 centuries). Tatev manuscript school was functioning in the Monastery in the Middle Ages as well.  

The Monastery was greatly affected by the 1931 earthquake.

The Monastery of Tatev is included in the UNESCO World Heritage List.

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