Other than resorts featured in The Bachelor, you’d be hard-pressed to find a destination that’s been bolstered by reality TV better than Armenia. The place Kim K and her children got baptized last October got a barrage of travel interest immediately after, including landing itself on our list of best places to travel in 2020. Much of this is due to its stunning landscapes, be that the snow-covered peak of Mount Ararat standing 16,854 feet over the countryside or Lake Savan in the Caucasus Mountains, the largest freshwater alpine lake in Eurasia, lovingly dubbed the Armenian Sea by locals. There’s a 1,000-year-old monastery along the shore that looks like it came straight from a fairytale, too.
That monastery is far from the only ancient religious site in Armenia: The town of Etchmiadzin is home to its namesake cathedral, the first Christian cathedral in the world, dating back to 303 AD. (A collection of churches from the ninth century can be found in Sevanavank as well.) You can also visit the odd UNESCO World Heritage dungeon at Khor Virap, where Gregory the Illuminator spent 14 years. And if you’re into hiking, Armenia has the Transcaucasian Trail, a 1,864-mile path that winds its way through one of the most scenic mountain regions in the world.