14 Day Tour

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14 Day Tour

If you are planning your trip to Armenia, this 14 day private guided tour is ideal for you!

 

Tour Description

On this guided tour you will experience the unique beauty of Armenia. Armenia is blessed with a great variety of beautiful landscapes. They range from wooded mountains in the north, volcanoes, vast plains and Lake Sevan in its center to rugged mountains and deep gorges in the south. Surrounded by varying empires and situated on important trade routes Armenia features a rich and complex history. The fortresses and castles you will visit still tell about these times.

 

Armenia is home to a century-old Christian tradition. Out of that it  has developed a unique and beautiful style of medieval ecclesiastical architecture. We will see important historical and cultural monuments of Armenia as well as hidden treasures tourists seldom visit. Always using the local stone these monuments have become part of the landscape and form a perfect harmony with the surrounding nature.

 

You will get to know the Armenian culture, taste typical dishes of our national cuisine and enjoy the hospitality of the Armenian people. Your guide will tell you all about Armenian traditions, Armenian history and life in Armenia.

 

Your guide will make every day of your tour an unforgettable experience. And when you return home, you will carry a piece of Armenia in your heart.

 

 

Itinerary

This tour will start in the capital of Armenia, Yerevan. It will take you all the way south to Goris and north to Haghpat and Sanahin and back to Yerevan. The longest areal tramway in the world will take you to the magnificent complex of Tatev Monastery. You will visit the ancient Stone Age Observatory and imagine how people lived in the ancient rock dwelling of Khndzoresk.

 

You will travel on the trade routes of the Silk Road and stop at a caravanserai. This is where travelers from distant parts of the world took shelter with their animals and precious goods. At Lake Sevan you can relax and savor the famous Sevan fish.  Later you willl enjoy the forested mountains around Dilijan. Further north we will marvel at Haghpat and Sanahin Monastery. These impressive complexes of numerous monastic buildings are part of the UNESCO World Heritage list. On the southern slopes of Mount Aragat lies Amberd Castle, the most impressive medieval fortress in Armenia. It offers a magnificent view over the plains towards Yerevan and Mount Ararat.

 

Day 1 Airport - Yerevan city tour
  • Arrival at the airport. Transfer to the hotel.
  • In the morning we visit Yerevan-Cascade, a monumental stairway, and the Victory Park, which offers an incredible view over the city. We will see the Cafesjian Center for Modern Arts, the Opera House and visit the Matenadaran. This museum is named after St. Mesrop Mashtots who invented the Armenian alphabet.  It hosts an unrivalled collection of ancient manuscripts of which some are dated back to the 5th century AD and are associated with Mesrop Mashtots.
  • Lunch
  • The afternoon we spend at the Vernissage, a souvenir market. You can choose from a big variety of souvenirs and local products – wines, brandies, dried fruits, sweets, herbs, jewelry, etc.
  • Dinner
  • In the evening we walk to the Republic Square through the Northern Avenue and enjoy the Dancing Fountains Show.

 

Day 2 Geghard - Garni - Symphony of Stones
  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Photo stop at the Arch of Charents. On a clear day the Arch of Charents provides a simply stunning view of Mount Ararat.
  • Next we visit Geghard Monastery. The name Geghard or more fully Geghardavank, meaning “the Monastery of the Spear”, originates from the spear, which had wounded Jesus. This spear was brought to Armenia and now is displayed in the Echmiadzin treasury. The monastery is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is one of the most revered places in Armenia. Built on the site of a sacred spring the monastery was founded in the 4th century. The main cathedral and several chapels and sepulchers cut into the rock date back to the 13th century.
  • Situated on an outcrop over the river Azat the pagan temple Garni is the only hellenistic colonnaded temple in Armenia.  King Tiridates I built it in 76 AD as a temple to the sun god Mithra (known as Mihr in Armenian). Later on it served as a royal summer house of the Armenian kings. In the vicinity of the temple there lie the ruins of the fortress, a royal summer palace and a bath complex of the 3rd century AD. The site of the temple offers a magnificent view into Garni Gorge.
  • Lunch
  • Deep in Garni Canyon the Goght River meets the Azat River. This canyon is well known for its wonderful hexagonal basalt steles. These pillars form sheer cliffs and overhanging structures from the bottom of the canyon to its rim. The composition is called “Symphony of Stones” or “Basalt Organ”.
  • Return to Yerevan, Dinner.

 

Day 3 Khor Virap - Areni - Areni Cave - Noravank
  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • At our first stop we enjoy a beautiful view of the biblical Ararat Mountain, where Noah’s ark cast anchor. Khor Virap Monastery (meaning «deep dungeon») rests atop a small hill facing the Ararat. Here Grigor Luisavorich (St. Gregory the Illuminator) was imprisoned for 13 years before he convinced the Armenian king to adapt Christianity as a state religion in 301 AD.
  • Our journey south-eastwards brings us to Areni, which is one of the actively developing wine regions in Armenia. Here the famous indigenous wine “Areni” originates. We will not miss the chance to taste it at one of the local wine factories.
  • Winery has an unparalleled tradition in Areni. In the mystical Bird’s Cave, wine vats date back to the Late Calcolithic Period. Here archeologists recently also found the oldest one-piece leather shoe about 5500-years old.
  • Overlooking the town of Areni lies the beautiful Areni Church, famous for its relief carvings by the great architect, sculptor and miniaturist Momik.
  • Lunch at the Cave restaurant
  • Noravank Monastery lies hidden in a beautiful gorge surrounded by red cliffs – one of the most stunning landscapes in Armenia. Here Momik built his masterpiece, the beautiful two story Surp Astvatsatsin church.
  • Dinner and overnight at a guesthouse in Yeghegnadzor.

 

Day 4 Spitakavor - Tanahativank - Gndevank  - Jermuk
  • Breakfast at the guesthouse
  • A jeep will bring us up into the mountains to Spitakavor. Not many people visit this remote monastery, although it is well known as burial place of the Armenian national hero Garegin Nzhdeh. High above the valley in perfect solitude this place has a very special atmosphere. Enjoy its tranquility, its beauty, and the majestic view.
  • Later we will visit the 8th century Tanahati Monastery. Now solitarily perched on a vast slope the two adjacent churches once were surrounded by a large monastic complex. Excavations suggest this site as the famous 13th century Gladzor University.
  • In viewing distance lies the Holy Cross Cathedral of Arcas, where according to tradition, a piece of Christ’s cross is buried.
  • Lunch at Yeghegnadzor.
  • In the beautiful valley of the Arpa River high mountains surround the monastery of Gndevank. To reach it, we will hike down the path the monks have used for centuries.
  • Then we continue to the famous resort town of Jermuk. It features healing thermal springs, picturesque nature and a pleasant climate. A gorge cuts right through the town and into it pours Jermuk Waterfall like a bridal veil.
  • Dinner and overnight in Jermuk.

 

Day 5 Jermuk Thermal Springs - Shaqi waterfall - Karahunj Observatory - Aghitu Memorial - Vorotnavank
  • Breakfast at the hotel
  •  After tasting some sources of thermal water in the spa park of Jermuk we visit a most unique place – a thermal spring in a remote valley high above Jermuk. A 4×4 vehicle will bring us to this secluded place and we will enjoy soaking in the warm mineral rich water.
  • Now we leave the Jermuk valley and the Vorotan pass leads us south – east into Syunik province. Valleys have cut into wide open plains and one of them features the beautiful Shaqi waterfall.
  •   Not far lies Karahunj Observatory, a prehistoric monument, which comprises stone settings, stone tombs and standing stones.·     Karahunj Observatory, dating back to the VI millennium B.C, is considered to be the oldest observatory, the so-called “Armenian Stonehenge”. As for its better-known “fellow” Stonehenge in England, its origin and function is still open to questions.
  • Following the Vorotan River towards Tatev, we first stop at the Aghitu memorial,  a unique 6th century mausoleum and then at Vorotnavank, a large monastery complex beautifully situated overlooking the valley.
  • Dinner and overnight in Goris.

 

Day 6 Tatev Monastery – Devil's Bridge – Tatev Anapat – Khndzoresk
  •  Tatev Monastery is located on top of a cliff overlooking Vorotan Gorge. You will enjoy the view over this huge canyon on a 12 minute ride with the cable car “Wings of Tatev” to Tatev Monastery. Tatev is among the best known monasteries in Armenia, famed for its historical significance as well as its beauty. It hosted an important Armenian university in the 14th and 15th century.
  •     We will then drive down into the Canyon to Devil’s Bridge. Several thermal springs have accumulated limestone sediments over the centuries and formed Devils Bridge as a natural bridge over the canyon.
  •     From there we will visit Tatevi Anapat, a medieval hermitage deep in the gorge. Even though it is not restored, the massive complex gives you an idea about the strength with which the Armenian heritage was defended through the centuries. 
  •     Lunch in Goris.
  •     In the afternoon we visit Old Khndzoresk– the ruins of a cave town, which we will reach via the unique “Swing bridge”. Khndzoresk was one of the largest cave villages in the region. Inhabited until about 1950 it still features picturesque views of the ruins set against the slopes of a beautiful gorge. 
  •     Return to Goris and tour through the city.
  •     Dinner and overnight in Goris.

 

Day 7 Tsakhatskar - Smbataberd - Yeghegis - Selim Caravanserai
  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Today we visit some treasures of Armenian history and architecture hidden away in the beautiful mountains near Yeghegis. A local driver will bring us to the remote monastery of Tsakhatskar and the fortress Smbataberd
  • Later we will join him and his family for lunch on his farmstead in the valley. We will be served locally grown fruit and vegetables and homemade cheeses, honey and wine. 
  • Heading on north the road climbs up Selim Pass. Protected under the last crest nestles Vardenyats (Selim) Caravanserai on the mountainside. This Caravanserai, built in 1332, bears witness to the importance of the Silk Road crossing through Armenia. Selim is the best preserved of several caravanserais that were built along commercial routes for the accommodation of travelers from the East to Europe.  
  • Dinner and overnight in Martuni.

 

 

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Day 8 Vanevan –  Kotavank –  Noratus – Hayravank – Sevanavank
  •  Breakfast at the guesthouse
  • Today we will visit Vanevan Monastery, situated in a beautiful orchard south of Lake Sevan. Here lie the remains of the Armenian King Smbat I Bagratuni, who died in 914 during an Arab invasion.
  •     Our next stop is a remarkable place. The church of Kotavank uniquely combines the the Christian and pre-Christian rites that are still followed in present day Armenia. 
  •     Then we will visit Noratus. Noratus is a huge ancient cemetery with hundreds of intricately carved cross-stones and gravestones that tell about the lives in those days. 
  •     Picnic on the shores of Lake Sevan. That is the ideal opportunity to try smoked Sevan trout.
  •     Beautifully set against the lake are Hayravank and Sevanavank, the latter monastery is located on a peninsula that used to be an island. We will enjoy the quiet hours of the evening in the vicinity of the monastery and on the shores of Lake Sevan.
  •     Dinner and Overnight at a hotel on the peninsula.

 

Day 9 Haghartsin – Lastiver – Makaravank – Ijevan
  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Driving north we reach the forested Dilijan region in which several outstanding monastic complexes are hidden. Famous for the pale stone it is built from and the skillful architectural composition of its refectory Haghartsin Monastery (10–13th century) is one of them.
  • From Yenokavan village we will hike along a ridge and down into the forested gorge to Lastiver. There we will find small caves called Lastiver and Anapat with mysterious sculptures and a beautiful stream with waterfalls. 
  • Between small houses constructed on trees for overnight guests we will have Armenian barbecue for lunch.
  • In the afternoon we will visit Makaravank. Here richly decorated architecture is hidden in perfect forest tranquility, a perfect place to enjoy a relaxing afternoon.
  •  Overnight in Ijevan.

 

Day 10 Dilijan  Goshavank  Vanazor Kobayr Haghpat
  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • In the morning we will visit a beautiful spot of Armenian nature – Lake Parz– which is nestled between the mountains of Dilijan National Park. From there we hike a part of the newly constructed Transcaucasian Trail to Goshavank Monastery(XII–XIII century) via Lake Gosh. The village of Gosh is famous for Mkhitar Gosh, the author of the first Armenian code of law. The Goshavank Monastery was the educational and cultural center of region and in front of the church stands the probably most beautiful khachkar. 
  •   Lunch with Armenian national dishes at the famous Kachuch restaurant in Dilijan
  • From here we head towards the city of Vanazor, a cultural center with a thriving art scene. We will visit a gallery of young artists and the workshop of a khachkar master.  
  • Driving north we enjoy the rugged beauty of Debed Canyon. We stop to enoy a short hike through ancient orchards up to Kobayr Monastery. Much has been destroyed, but like a miracle, the beautiful absidial frescoes of the main church have endured and are looking down on us.
  • We enjoy the peaceful evening atmosphere at the famous Haghpat Monastery complex
  •   Overnight in Haghpat.

 

 

Day 11 Haghpat – Sanahin – Akhtala – Odzun – Lori Fortress – Spitak
  •  Breakfast at the guesthouse
  • Today we visit the UNESCO World Heritage Sites Haghpat and Sanahin, early medieval monastic complexes in the Lori region.
  • A few more kilometers to the north, Akhtala already shows some Georgian influence in its architecture and decor. Akhtala features the best preserved frescoes in Armenia.  Biblical scenes and saints in the byzantine tradition cover all the walls of this huge church, which give it a very special atmosphere.
  • Lunch at a local restaurant in Alaverdi.
  • Odzun Cathedral is an 8th century church built from beautiful pink stone. It features a grave monument with two intricately carved green sandstone steles.
  •   Lori fortress had a territory of 33 ha and was in full blossom in the second half of the 11th century, becoming the capital of the Tashir-Dzoraget kingdom. A church and two bathrooms are preserved at Lori Berd. Near the castle, in the lower part of the gorge, an arched bridge stretches over the Urut River.
  • Dinner at Old Spitak Restaurant.
  • Overnight in Spitak.

 

Day 12 Gyumri
  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • On our way to Gyumri we visit the rural town of Gogaran with its small but beautiful ancient church. 
  • The churches of Marmashen are a festival of colors, built in red stone and beautifully situated in a lush orchard next to a reservoir.
  • A walking tour through the nicely renovated historic center of Gyumri leads us to the bazaar and the Museum of Urban Life and National Architecture.
  • Heading back towards Spitak we visit the holy place St. Hovhannes. This hilltop sanctuary is held in great esteem by the locals and many khachkars donated to this place testify to the answer to prayers.
  • Overnight in Spitak.

 

Day 13 Armenian Letters – Metal Cross – Amberd – Tegher
  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  •   The Armenian Alphabet Monument is located on the western slope of Mount Aragats. The complex was built in 2005 to celebrate the 1600th anniversary of the creation of the Armenian alphabet. The complex includes sculptures of the 39 letters of the Armenian alphabet, as well as monuments to the great Armenian thinkers. All the letters and statues are made of Armenian tuff.
  • Amberd, translated as “a fortress in clouds”, really seems to touch the sky. This gem of early medieval Armenian architecture (supposedly 7th century) majestically stands 2,300 meters high above sea level on the slopes of Mount Aragats. For centuries, it served as one of the foremost defensive sites of the Kingdom of Armenia. The fortress complex includes the castle, a bath and a church and offers stunning views into the plains towards Yerevan and Mount Ararat.
  • Lunch
  •   Also on the slopes of Mount Aragats we will visit Tegher Monastery, a unique complex dating back to the 13th century.
  • Overnight in Yerevan

 

 

Day 14 Etchmiadzin
  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Between Yerevan and Echmiatsin is the site of the famous 7th century Kathedral of Zvartnots. Although only ruins remain, this site is most impressive in size its architecture marks and is appreciated as one of the most famous architectural symbols of the Armenian  Church.
  • Echmiatsin is the fourth-largest city in Armenia, one of the historic capitals of Armenia and the spiritual center of the Armenians, as it is the seat of the Catholicos, the head of the Armenian Apostolic Church. Armenia’s patron Saint Gregory the Illuminator had a vision of Jesus descending from heaven and striking the earth with a golden hammer to show where the cathedral should be built. It is one of the world’s oldest Christian structures still in use.
  • Farewell dinner and overnight in Yerevan
  • Transfer to airport

 

Map of the 14 day tour
 

 

Tour price: Private guided tour through Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh

People/Guests1-34-67-14
Price / per tour / AMD733 800866 400999 000
Price / per tour / RUB*99 162117 081135 000
Price / per tour / USD*1 5451 8242 103

         

            * RUB and USD might be different depending on the current exchange rate

 

The price of the private guided tour through Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh includes

  • Pick up at the airport / hotel and transport  with our comfortable cars/minivans
  • An English, Russian and Armenian speaking guide
  • Bottled water in the carransport service of the tour on comfortable  transport

 

The price does not include

  • Meals
  • Accommodation (We are happy to assist you in booking hotels or guesthouses)
  • Entrance fees

 

Regardless of the tours presented, we are happy to work with you to plan your own individual tour  to include exactly the places you would like to visit.

Contact us at any time and we will give you free consultation. We will do everything to make your stay unforgettable.

 

Pictures of this tour: