Kond is known as one of Yerevan’s oldest continuously inhabited neighbourhoods. Despite its strong Armenian character, however, its central square contains a cluster of non-operating mosques dating from the city’s occupation by the Persian Empire. The largest of which, the Thapha Bashi mosque, still stands, having withstood the ravages of time, changing empires, and communism.
The mosque, as well as its neighbouring religious structures, had been closed by the militantly Atheist Soviet authorities, its Persian-speaking worshipers having long since left. It was converted into housing for refugees from the 1st World War. Their descendants are often still living within the structure.
Even as a ruin, this building is impressive. It boasts some of the best architectural and design elements Persian-style mosques are known for. Some of the frescoes have survived the ages intact. This site is perfect for any urban explorer.
Be sure to ask the locals first if it’s OK to walk around and take pictures. They’re usually very accommodating, will tell you all sorts of stories about the place, and very likely invite you in for tea, coffee, or home-made vodka.