Zangezur Biosphere Complex
‘Biosphere’ denotes the connectedness and co-dependency of various species within one ecosystem and it’s precisely due to the existence of one such ecosystem in southern Armenia that – in 2013 – several existing protected areas in the Syunik Region were combined to create the Zangezur Biosphere Complex, one of the region’s largest protected areas. The Biosphere’s Plane Grove Sanctuary is home to the largest natural grove of oriental plane trees the Caucasus, with some examples over one thousand years old. The highland meadows and sub-alpine step are a vital habitat for one of Armenia’s most iconic animals – the Armenian mouflon. There have also been recent sightings of the Caucasian leopard in Zangezur, along the border with Azerbaijan, which raises hope that the region’s most iconic species (which also features in the logo of the Caucasus Nature Fund) is making a comeback. Visitors can chose from one of thirteen marked trails, camp on Khutsup Mountain or rent horses for an unforgettable ride through this majestic landscape.