Venice – San Lazzaro degli Armeni

San Lazzaro degli Armeni is a small island about twenty minutes by vaporetto from St Mark’s Square. It is home to the Monastery of the Armenian monks of the Mekhitarist Order who settled here in 1717.

The Armenian community guards an impressive cultural heritage collected and produced over the decades. With an in-house printing press, a library still preserving rare manuscripts and a number of artistic works of enormous value donated by the faithful and devotees, San Lazzaro degli Armeni is a treasure chest of inestimable value that survived, by virtue of its exceptional scientific-literary production, even the monastic suppressions of the Napoleonic era.

Among the wonders not to be missed are canvases by Tiepolo, a candid sculpture by Canova, an unusual Egyptian mummy and the colourful rose garden where the monks collect the flower petals they use to make the fragrant vartanush, a rose-based jam.

Opening times: by appointment only; there are three rounds of visits; telephone 0415260104 or email

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