Lori and Tavush are some of the greenest parts of Armenia, with a lot of forests along bordering regions especially. The northernmost part of Lori had its history intertwined with Georgia's for many centuries. The north and northeast are also extremely rich in monasteries and other historic monuments. Days can be spent visiting and hiking to them. The whole area is great for hikers, with no fences, and lots of back country trails. Camping is acceptable just about anywhere.
Gyumri was devastated by an earthquake in 1988 and so was Spitak. Recovery was excruciatingly slow, but now things are for the most part restored - at least to levels of normalcy seen in other parts of Armenia. You will, however still notice earthquake damage in Gyumri.