Dilijan is a spa town in the Tavush Province of Armenia, and it is one of the most important resorts of the country, situated within the Dilijan National Park. Dilijan is among the favorite destinations for local and foreign tourists and the town has a number of high class hotels and sanatoriums, allowing the visitors the chance to enjoy the beauty of the National Park, as well as the historical sites. The town is also famous for its mineral curing water fountains.
The forested and reclusive Dilijan is home to numerous Armenian artists, composers, and filmmakers, and features some traditional Armenian architecture. The Sharambeyan Street in the center, has been preserved and maintained as an “old town,” complete with craftsman’s workshops, a gallery and a museum. Hiking, mountain biking, birdwatching and picnicking are popular recreational activities.
During the medieval period, the territory of Dilijan was known as Hovk. Hovk was the favorite forest and a summer resort for the Arsacid kings, to show their abilities in hunting. The settlement of Bujur Dili was founded during the 13th century near the area of modern day Dilijan. The monastery complexes have quickly developed and have served as cultural and educational centers. Haghartsin and Goshavank are one of the iconic examples of the developing Armenian architecture during the Middle Ages.
The forests of Dilijan cover an area of more than 34,000 hectares, with around 40 types of trees and 18 types of bushes, being mostly oaks, beeches, hornbeams, maples, elms, willows, etc.
The National Park is also rich in its fauna, including brown bear, wolf, marten, otter, lynx, sylvan cat, Persian squirrel, sylvan dormouse, hedgehog, chamois, European red deer, wild hog, pheasant, quail, partridge, Caspian turkey, culver, bald eagle, lammergeyer, pygmy eagles, golden eagle, hawk and others.
Lake Parz (Parz Lich, a “Clear Lake” in Armenian) is one of Dilijan’s most attractive natural sites. It is situated in the northern part of the town at a height of 1,400 meters (4,593ft) above sea level. It has an area of 2 hectares (5 acres) and an average depth of 8 meters (26ft). This small lake is considered as one of the most beautiful fall foliage spots in the Armenia.
In 2012, the International UWC School of Dilijan, a part of the global educational movement United World Colleges, was opened in the town.