Old churches, medieval castles, lakes and cliffs, apricots and cognac, charming sound of duduk – this is all about the unique culture that you will explore during this Armenia tour. You will meet this “pink city” Yerevan, Gerard monastery complex, residence of all Armenians Catholicos – the monastery of Etchmiadzin and also visit a fortress of Amberd located at a height of 2300 meters above the sea level. You will see famous Armenian khachkary, enjoy the beauty of an alpine Lake Sevan and taste well-known waters of Dilijan.
Day 1: Arrival in Yerevan
One of the oldest cities of the world, Yerevan is famous as a pink city and calls visitors with its humble and at the same time splendid landscapes. Start city tour visiting Cascade Monument which was the main symbol of the cities 2780th anniversary with the equivalent number of stairs. Mega scale staircase is 500 meters high and 50 meters wide. A panoramic view from the monument opens up breathtaking city view with Opera House, Mount Ararat, Swan Lake, Republic Square, and Abovyan Avenue, which you will also walk by during the tour. If it is a weekend, visit Vernissage, the biggest souvenir market in Yerevan. Continue to the Armenian Genocide memorial complex on the hill of Tsitsernakaberd. An excellent round-up of the tour will be a visit to the Megeryan carpet factory where you can observe a process of creating famous Armenian rugs. You will see carpets from different regions of Armenia and find out about hidden meanings of elements used in their design. In the evening, enjoy dinner and traditional folklore show. Overnight at hotel.
Day 2: Yerevan – Garni – Geghard – Etchmiadzin – Yerevan
Depart Yerevan and drive to Garni, one of the major villages in Armenia famous for its fortress. The fortress is the only pagan sacred place from the 1st century that survived aggressive introduction of Christianity in the 4th century. Next stop is at the monastery complex Geghard (means a spear in Armenian). A beautiful landscape of Geghard is framed with towering cliffs. Decorative art cut into rocks reflect and explain Medieval Ages development throughout the region. The complex was introduced to the history in the 4th century as a sacred spring inside a cave. Continue to the Holy See of Armenia, Etchmiadzin. Visit Etchmiadzin Cathedral* which is the residence of the head of Armenian Apostolic Church the Catholicos of All Armenians. Drive back to Yerevan. Overnight at the hotel.
* The site is presently under renovation works.
Day 3: Yerevan – Khor-Virap – Areni – Tatev – Yerevan
After breakfast, head to Khor-Virap monastery (“deep pit”). According to the legend, St. Gregory the Illuminator, the Baptist of Armenia, had been kept here in the basement during 13 years for the disseminating of Christianity until tsar Tradt decided to adopt new religion. Monastery location allows you to enjoy the best views of the Mt. Ararat. Continue to Areni, a city known for producing famous Armenian wine from pomegranate and apricot. Have a wine degustation in a local winery. Drive to Tatev Monastery (9-13 cent.). Approaching the jewel of medieval Armenian architecture on the longest aerial tramway in the world you will see the monastery, the powerful impregnable stronghold towering on a rock. Such a remote position of it was strategically favorable as the monastery was simultaneously religious and political centre of the region. Standing on the edge of the rock, the monastery takes your breath away: somewhere down below the river flows in the valley and crowded velvet green hills stand in silence… Return to Yerevan. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 4: Yerevan – Oshakan – Amberd fortress – Yerevan
Meet your guide and driver at your hotel. Take the way to Amberd – rare historical site that survived and reached us in a good condition from the 7-th century. Some say that it was built in the 11-13th centuries, attributing it to the near located church. Amberd means ‘fortress in the clouds’; the name is due to its location 2300 meters above sea level. Continue to Oshakan, which is known as a burial place of the father of the Armenian alphabet Saint Mesrop Mashtots. A cathedral named after him houses his grave which was rebuilt by Catholicos George IV in 1875.
Return to Yerevan. Free time. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 5: Yerevan – Haghpat – Sanahin – Yerevan
After breakfast, depart to Lori region. Visit Haghpat and Sanahin* monasteries built during prosperous the Kiurikian dynasty (10th to 13th century). Both monasteries were very important educational centers. Sanahin (meaning “this one is older than that one”) was famous for its calligraphy and illumination school. There are numerous khachkars (Armenian cross-stones) on their territory dating back to 1273. Being UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Haghpat and Sanahin represent bright example of traditional Armenian religious architecture. Drive back to Yerevan. Overnight at the hotel.
* The site is presently under renovation works.
Day 6: Yerevan – Lake Sevan – Sevanavank – Dilijan – Yerevan
Start your day driving to Lake Sevan. Ancient relict Lake Sevan – “The Jewel of Armenia” is one of the largest high-mountainous fresh water lakes in the world. The coastline of Lake Sevan is rich with thick woods, white bare steep rocks, mountain steppes and Alpine meadows. Stop at Sevanavank to visit the remnants of the monastery that include two temples – Surb Arakelots and Surb Astvatsatsin standing among numerous khachkars. The buildings were constructed from black tuff which probably gave the monastery its name Sevanavank – “the Black Monastery”. The view from there is simply magnificent: the mountains surround lake from all sides and snow tops are seen almost on the entire perimeter and disappear behind horizon. The next milestone is Dilijan, the most famous tourist spot where you will visit two monastery complexes, Haghartsin Monastery and Goshavank Monastery. Constructed in 10-13 centuries, the name of religious complex Haghartsin can be translated from Armenian as "games of eagles". Goshavank Monastery is the best one to explore “khachkars” – Armenian cross-stones. Return to Yerevan. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 7: Yerevan – departure
Check-out from the hotel till noon. Visiting traditional Armenian market.
Transfer to Yerevan International Airport. Departure.
|Yerevan - 6 nights|
Ani Plaza, Imperial Palace
- All transfers 1-2 pax by sedan; 3-6 pax by van; 7-15 pax by mini bus;
- Accommodation based on double/twin room sharing, breakfasts included;
- Sightseeing tour program with local guide;
- Entrance fees to sights as per itinerary.
Price does not include:
- Full board (lunches and dinners);
- Hotel charges for additional services;
- Visa support and consular fees for tourist visa;
- Personal travel insurance.