10 Day Religious, Cultural & Wine Tasting Tour
Day 1: Flight
Arrival Day. Transfer to the hotel.
Day 2: Yerevan City Tour
Yerevan being on the crossroads of several important trade caravans thus solidifies its importance in the region. Modern Yerevan was redesigned in the early part of the 20th century based on the old city and has a series of restyled parks and squares which run through the city centre. The trip will start with the visit to Matenadaran, one of the oldest and richest book-depositories in the world.
A visit to the Genocide Memorial and Museum.
Dinner and overnight at the hotel
Day 3: Yerevan – Echmiadzin – Zvartnots - Yerevan
After breakfast, departure to Echmiadzin.
First stop are the ruins of Zvartnots. The temple was built in the 7th Century by Catholicos Nerses III Shinarar. It collapsed in an earthquake in the 10th Century. According to the opinion of European specialists, the temple of Zvartnots may be ranked amongst the greatest monuments of ancient architecture.
Then its on to Ecmiadzin, one of the holiest cities in Armenia. This former capital is now the home of the Supreme Catholicos of the Armenian Apostolic Orthodox faith. The main Cathedral was founded by St.Gregory in 303 and sits on a former pagan shrine.
Visit to the Church of Hripsime, dedicated to the martyred Christian virgin. On the way back visit winery “Maran”. Return to Yerevan.
Visit local fruit market. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 4 : Yerevan – Khor Virap – Noravank – Goris
After the breakfast visit KhorVirap Monastery, a once famous pilgrimage site and from where you may witness the stunning views of Mount Ararat.
Apostolic church and a pilgrimage site. According to the church lore this is the location of the municipal jail of the capital of Armenia Artashat, into where due to the orders of King Trdat III, Gregory the Illuminator was thrown, he being accused of professing Christianity. Gregory spent 13 years here.
Then move on to Vayots Dzor and a visit to a local winery. Then continue to the Monastery of Noravank-one of the most splendid monuments of medieval Armenia, built in a location of a significant natural beauty. The monastery overhangs the gorge of the river. Between the 12th and 14th centuries the Noravank monastery was the Cathedral of the Bishops of Syunik. The oldest structure of the monastery, the church of St. Karapet (9-10 c) didn’t survive. The principal church is also called St. Karapet, it was built in the 13th c.
After the lunch continue to Goris. Dinner and overnight in Goris.
Day 5: Goris – Khndzoresk – Tatev – Yeghegnadzor
We begin with a tour of the City of Goris to explore the city which is immersed amongst the surrounding green hills and mountains and also near to many interesting caves. Goris has some of the finest architecture to be found in Armenia.
We then hike to Khndzoresk, a ‘dead’ village where the previous inhabitants lived in human built caves.
We continue with a tour of the abbey of Tatev which is an architectural masterpiece dating from the 9th century, Tatev is often considered as a monastery built at the edge of nothingness. On the way to Tatev we visit the natural bridge called Devil's Bridge.
We then continue to Yeghegnadzor and visit winery Getnatoun.
Dinner and overnight in Goris.
Day 6: Yeghegnadzor – Getap wine factory – Selim – Noratus – Sevan
After breakfast we visit the Getap factory and then continue to Selim Caravansarai.
Situated in the Selim (Sulema) mountain pass, 2410 m above sea level and on the old road which connects historical Gegharkunik with Vayots Dzor.
According to the two building inscriptions the caravanserai was built in 1332 by Prince Orbelyan Chesar.
Drive to next stop, the Noratus Cemetery in Noradouz- it is a big cemetery and is widely known thanks to its great numbers of khachkars (Armenian cross stones which are vivid, sanguineous phenomena ) mostly built between the 13th to 17th Centuries. Many of these khachkars are set on special plinths.
Then on to the huge mountain lake which covers 5% of Armenia’s surface area and is about 2000 meters above the sea level. It is the second highest freshwater lake in the world. Dinner.
Overnight in the Hotel Harsnaqar, Sevan.
Day 7: Sevan – Makaravank – Ijevan wine factory – Haghartsin – Dilijan
After breakfast move to Makaravank.
Makaravank is a medieval architectural church on the slopes of Paitatap Mountain. The main church was constructed in 1205 of pink andesite. The oldest church of the complex was constructed in the 10th-11th centuries from large pieces of rough-hewn red volcanic tuff. The construction material for the gavit is of red andesite.
On the eastern side of the complex of Makaravank is St Astvatsatsin (Mother of God) church in white stone.
Visit Ijevan winery. After our tasteing continue to the Haghartsin Monastic Complex, founded in the 10-13th century. New buildings were added to the monastery during later times. The complex consists of St. Grigor, St. Astvatsatsin (The Mother of God), St. Stepanos churches and other buildings. A huge oak tree, almost the age of the monastery, complements the whole scene. Lush forests and mountains add to the beauty of the whole complex.
Arrive to Dilijan. Dinner and overnight in Dilijan .
Day 8: Dilijan – Yerevan
After breakfast explore Dilijan city. It is a lush, green city, one of the most important resorts of Armenia, situated in Dilijan National Park. The Sharambeyan Street, which is in the centre, has been preserved and maintained as an "old town," completed with craftsman's workshops, with a gallery and a museum.
Continue to Yerevan. On the way we visit the churches of the peninsula (St. Astvatsatsin and St.Arakelots 9th century).
Lunch. Visit the Museum of History, then we visit the Winery.
Dinner and overnight in Yerevan.
Day 9: Garni – Geghard – Ashtarak – Yerevan
After breakfast departure to Geghard.
Geghard – Cave Monastery, the name, Geghard, derives from the relics of the Armenian name. Later the monastery was renamed Geghard, which meant "spear". According to folk lore the monastery was the depositary of one of the relics of the Armenian Apostolic church: the spear that one of the roman guards had used to pierce the rib of crucified Christ.
Next stop is Garni. The heathen temple of Garni is the only surviving monument of the Hellenistic period in Armenia. The temple is dedicated to the God of the sun Mithra and was built in the 2nd half of the 1st c A.D. during the reign of King Trdat I. Soon after Armenia adopted Christianity, the temple became the summer residence of the Armenian royalty. Lunch.
Continue to Ashtarak. Visit the Oshakan winery. Return to Yerevan.
Dinner. Overnight in hotel.
Day 10: Departure/Transfer to the airport
End of our service
THE TOUR INCLUDES
Accommodation at hotel in Yerevan (05 nights) – B/B in DBL room
Accommodation at hotel in Goris (01 night) – B/B in DBL room
Accommodation at hotel in Yeghegnadzor (01 night) – B/B in DBL room
Accommodation at hotel in Sevan (01 night) – B/B in DBL room
Accommodation at hotel in Dilijan (01 night) – B/B in DBL room
Deluxe air conditioned transport for roundtrip
FB (+ lunch + dinner)
Guide during whole tour
Local taxes, porter age airport & hotels, tipping in hotels & restaurants