Ninotsminda is a town in Samtskhe-Javakheti region. It rests 26 km away from the Armenian town of Bavra, situated on Javakheti volcanic plateauat an elevation of 1940 m above sea level. Ninotsminda received status of town in 1983. Before 1991 it was called Bogdanovka. The population of Ninotsminda is 5144 (as of the year 2014).
There are several lakes in Ninotsminda Municipality:
Paravani Lake (at an elevation of 2200 meters above sea level). It is the largest lake in the country. Paravani covers 3750 ha. The average depth is 12 meters; Khanchali Lake (1900 meters), covers 630 ha, the average depth – 2 meters; Saghamo Lake (2000 meters), the size – 510 ha. The average depth – 6-7 meters. Madatapa Lake (2100 meters). The size – 960 ha, the average depth - 2-3 meters; It is located in the Madatapa Managed Reserve.
Madatapa Managed Reserve is part of Javakheti Protected Areas. It is located at an elevation of 2018 meters above sea level. Endangered Dalmatian Pelican can be spotted near Madatapa during different periods.
Ninotsminda area has lots of interesting churches on its territory:
Poka St. Nino Nunnery is related to the woman, Nino, who preached Christianity in Georgian in the 4th century. The monastery was founded in the 11th century in the village Poka, on the banks of the lake Paravani. The present building was constructed in 1992. 16 different types of cheese have been produced in the monastery since 2010. In addition one can find various jams, crackers, truffles, chocolate there. “Pokany Workshops” has been restoring the traditions of Georgian enamel, mosaic, skills of goldsmiths since 2010. The products are sold at Bambis Rigi in the old part of Tbilisi.
Besides Poka St. Nino Nunnery, there is another church, which was built in 1989.
2 Georgian Orthodox Churches were constructed by Shalva Jakeli (local lord) in the 14th century in the village Gandza. St. Karapet Armenian Church is situated in the same village, built in the 19th century.
3 churches are situated along the way in the village Saghamo: The first dates back to the 10th century, the second and the third – 13th century. There is also the fourth church on the top of the mountain which is almost ruined.
Another Armenian Church can be found in the village Gonduri. It was founded in the 19th century.
The visitor can see the five arch bridge in the village Kaurma. The bridge was constructed in the 12th century. The bridge is still in operation.
Ancient ruins of the fortress near village Aspara dates back to the 2nd millennium BC.
There are 4 museums in the Ninotsminda Municipality: Vahan Terian (a famous Armenian poet) museum in Gandza, Viktor Hovsepian (also a famous Armenian poet) museum in Eshtia, Doukhobor (a spiritual Christian religious group of Russian origin) museum in Gorilovka, and a Military Museum in Ninotsminda. Ninotsminda Theater was founded in 1984.
The main field of agriculture is animal husbandry, potato planting, beekeeping. There are several milk and cheese factories in the municipality.
S11 Highway goes through the Ninotsminda Municipality. It is part of the European route E691.
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