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Armenian highland is a mountainous region, a natural fortress that stretches from the eastern Caucasus to Anatolia and from the Black Sea to Mesopotamia. The highland covers several mountain ranges, including the Taurus and the Pontos . Between these mountain chains lie several high altitude plains, most of them at between 1 000 and 2 000 meters above sea level. Through the valleys run the Araxes, Euphrates and Tigris rivers.

The mountain ranges are often topped by inactive volcanoes; Ararat with its 5,165 meters is the highest one. Mount Ararat at 5 165 meters, is the highest of these. According to the Old Testament, Mount Ararat was the landing place of Noah's Ark; and in literature is often mentioned as the holy mountain of the Armenians and the national symbol of Armenia.

The snow-covered peaks form important water reserves for the plantations in the fertile valleys beneath. The volcanic soil is extremely fertile.

Between the mountain peaks lie several great lakes, of Van is the largest, while Sevan, at an altitude of 1 900 meters above sea level, is the second highest freshwater lake in the world. 3 Sevan has a rich stock of fresh water fish, of which the "Ishkhan", a type of trout, is the most popular.

Once seen, the beauty and magnificence of the Armenian landscape is not easily forgotten. The author Binder wrote: "It is like watching an ocean of mountains, and a sea captured in a storm of enormous waves which suddenly has been frozen into rock."

Whilst the landscape is very fertile it can be harsh; and has fostered a people of similar nature. Indeed, Paul Rohrbach suggested that in order to understand the nature of the Armenian people, and to dismiss certain unfounded and superficial judgments about the nation one should know the landscape Only a tough and persistent people could prosper among its high mountains and the corresponding climate.

Although the area should be regarded as part of the Asian continent it shares a border with Europe. General von Seeckt, for instance, commented: "The Taurus mountains, which separate the highlands of Asia Minor from the plains of Syria and Mesopotamia, are the real borders of Europe." 7 Another traveller noted: "In the plain of Yerevan you do not know whether you are in Europe or in Asia."

The Armenian highland is situated in the southern Caucasus, or Transcaucasia, and forms a natural border between Europe and Asia. The positioning of the mountain ranges creates an impenetrable natural fortress, the only passage connecting Asia and Europe.