Republic. Gained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991.
Head of state:
President Serzh Sargsyan since 2008.
Head of government:
Prime Minister Hovik Abrahamyan since 2014.
220 volts AC, 50Hz. European plugs with two round pins are used.
Armenia is a trove of history, littered with crumbling churches perched in spectacular settings. Landscapes transition rapidly from lush forests to shimmering lakes and stark deserts. But the best thing about Armenia is the Armenians themselves - ever welcoming and eager to show off their country to visitors.
Christianity arrived in 301AD and Armenia proudly calls itself the world's oldest Christian nation. Since the break up of the Soviet Union Armenia has seen a revival of nationalism and traditional culture. The capital Yerevan is the nation's hub of cultural activity and progressive thought, sporting impressive museums and a lively modern arts scene.
Cafe culture has been perfected and it's de rigueur to spend inordinate amounts of time lingering over bottles of Armenian cognac. Armenian food is another treat - always served hot and fresh you can expect mounds of grilled meats and vegetables straight from the nearest garden.
Last updated: 21 July 2014
The travel advice summary below is provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in the UK. 'We' refers to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. For their full travel advice, visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advise against all but essential travel in the area of the closed border between Armenia and Azerbaijan, particularly in the Tavush and Gegharkunik regions. The FCO advise against all travel on the road between Ijevan and Noyemberyan, which passes close to the border. In April and June 2012, there were reports of ceasefire violations along the Armenia-Azerbaijan border which resulted in a number of deaths and casualties.
The British Embassy can’t provide consular assistance or advice to visitors to the Nagorno-Karabakh region.
There is a low threat from terrorism.
Avoid all demonstrations and large public gatherings.
In May 2012 a gay-friendly bar in downtown Yerevan was attacked and a diversity march in central Yerevan was disrupted by nationalist groups.
From 10 January 2013, British and EU passport holders no longer require a tourist visa to visit Armenia.