The people of Armenian have an ancient history that created a unique culture. In the Armenian Culture the cuisine is especially different. This is confirmed by scientists, whose archaeological excavations suggest that Armenian way of cooking is more than two thousand years old – and it has managed to survive to our times. Products used in the kitchen grow in the Ararat Valley. During this tour you can visit Armenian sights, get acquainted with Armenian culture through delicious dishes of Armenian cuisine. Moreover, the itinerary includes the wine route to make your experience more joyful.
duration: 6 days / 5 nights
best season: spring / fall
start / end point: yerevan
meals: 6 meals
family friendly: yes
After your arrival we will meet you at the airport and transfer to your hotel in Yerevan. Your trip starts with a city tour around Armenia’s capital city Yerevan. First of all, you will be able to enjoy an amazing view to Yerevan and Mount Ararat from the observation area in the Victory Park. The excursion will continue to the Cascade – the favorite place of Yerevan residents. The cascade is a huge staircase that connects the city center with the residential area. Downstairs, you will see the unique sculptures, belonging to the world famous foreign sculptors. Next, you will pass through the main street of the city and see the building of the opera and ballet theatre, several central streets of Yerevan, and the Republic Square – the “heart” of the capital. Later, you visit the "Megerian Carpet" factory. The Megerians continue to apply their unparalleled skill in the creation of rugs and tapestries of uncompromising artistry and workmanship. Welcome dinner at the factory’s restaurant where you can taste Armenian traditional dishes and listen to folk music.
First thing after the breakfast, see the resort town of Dilijan. It is otherwise referred to as 'armenian switzerland' for its fantastic natural forests. The town is a part of Dilijan National Park, as well as a developing financial and educational center. The next stop is Haghartsin, a 10th century monastery that has been recently renovated by donation of sheikh dr. Sultan bin Mohammad al Qassimi, the ruler of Sharjah, who was impressed by the monastery when visited it. Next, a visit Lake Sevan. It is a pearl of this mountainous country and one of the largest freshwater high-altitude lakes in Eurasia. Swimming in the lake in recommended only during the summer as it contains fresh cold water and is located 1900 meters above sea level. You will also visit Sevanavank, a monastery complex on Sevan peninsula. Lunch at one of the Sevan’s restaurants, where you can taste fish from the lake and the brand kebab made of crayfish. Then, visit to Noratus - the forest of khachkars (crossstones). Lastly, you visit to "Tsaghkunq", where the chef will give a master class in preparation of lamb in tondir. (groups of 10+). Return to Yerevan.
This trip to the highest mountain in Armenia - Aragats, will start with visiting Amberd Fortress(10-12 century), -“fortress in the clouds”. Then you reach the coast of Lake Kari, located 3250 meters above the sea level. Here you will taste traditional Khash at the slope of Aragats. Lastly, you visit 13th century Saghmosavank monastery. It is located just above the deep gorge of Qasagh river, which provides additional beauty and charm to the monastery.
Day 4 begins with a trip through the Ararat Valley to the monastery of Khor Virap. Its history is related to the adoption of Christianity in Armenia. It offers the most spectacular view of Mount Ararat. The tour continues in Areni wine region - the cradle of winewaking. Here you participate in tasting local wines and have an excursion at a wine factory and have a luch with National dishes of the region. Next stop is at the world famous cave, where during the excavations the oldest shoe and winery in the world were found. They date back over 5500 years. Lastly, you see the masterpiece of medieval Armenian architecture - the Monastery of Noravank. It is surrounded by picturesque red cliffs and beautiful landscapes.
The pride of armenia – the cognac (brandy) factory is your first stop of the day. Here you have an excursion, get introduced with cognac-making technology and taste couple of varieties of famous Armenian Brandy. Garni Pagan Temple located not far from Yerevan comes next. It was dedicated to the sun god Mitra (mihr) and was the summer residence of Armenian kings. Next is a UNESCO heritage sight Monastery of Geghard. It is known for its peerless sculptures and cave church. Founded in the 3rd centurym, its name translates as spear, dedicated to the Holy Lance, which used to be kept here. Here you take part in Lavash backing master class and have a meal an the local restaurant, where you can taste grilled meat and vegetables prepared in oven, apricot and mulberry vodka.
Day begins, as always with a breakfast at the hotel. It is followed by a trip to the ‘Armenian Vatican’, the religious center of all Armenians and the oldest state built cathedral in the world – st. Etchmidzin (4th c.). You also attend the Etchmiadzin museum where many holy relics are kept. Moreover, you visit surrounding early medieval churches Gayane and Hripsime. Here you have a lunch and taste famous Qufta from Etchmiadzin. Next is a drive to the ruins of Zvartnots. It is another UNESCO world heritage site along with Etchmiadzin.