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Tour for gourmands in Armenia

7 days / 6 nights

Open Detailed Descriptions
Day 1

Arrival in Yerevan. Transfer to the selected hotel. Sightseeing tour in Yerevan.

Breakfast at the hotel. Yerevan sightseeing including City center, Republic square, State University, City panorama, Mother Armenia Monument, Parliament, President’s Palace, Opera, Sports & Concert Complex.

Visit to the Genocide Memorial, dedicated to the Victims of 1915 and the Genocide Museum.

Visit to Matenadaran (depository for ancient manuscripts, the collection of which is one of the biggest in the world). This outstanding collection includes manuscripts dating from 7th century and is widely appreciated by history and art amateurs and professionals.

Visit to Cascade complex, which is considered the modern art center of Yerevan, with art pieces displayed throughout the whole area: the boulevard and up the stairs, from top of which you can enjoy the panoramic view on the city and Mountain Ararat. Cascade is home to Cafesjan modern art museum. This place becomes even more charming in the evenings, when it is full of people, both locals and tourists from all over the world, enjoying the magic and the warmth of the capital. You will enjoy spending time in one of the cosy open-air cafes surrounded by beautiful sculptures, redolent flowers shining brightly with magic colors. It is also a popular place for open air concerts at summer season. 

Excursion to the ruins of the fortress of Erebuni founded by Urartian king Argishti I in 782 BC, visit to the Erebuni museum (1968.) The fortress played an important role in the life of the Armenian state. Visit to the hand -made carpet factory. Each signed piece represents a rare combination of Old World craftsmanship and the design aesthetics of today's most discerning clientele.

Lunch in a small restaurant, located in the factory, where visitors can try specific dish of Armenian cuisine - "Ghapama". It is made of sweet rice, cooked in a pumpkin. Ghapama was indispensable dish on the Armenian weddings, representing the young life full of abundance.

Optional:Tour to the world-famous Yerevan Brandy Factory "Ararat", which keeps the tradition of the legendary cognac production since 1887. In 1 hour the visitors have the opportunity to see brandy manufacturing process, with the Museum of the factory, taste different varieties with different degrees of exposure of cognac, as well as to acquire real Armenian brandy in the store directly at the plant. 

Dinner at a local restaurant in Yerevan with traditional Caucasian cuisine where you can taste the popular Armenian national dish "Khashlama". which is prepared mainly from lamb with vegetables. Overnight in Yerevan.

Day 2

Etchmiadzin - Zvartnots

Breakfast at the hotel. Drive to Etchmiadzin City, which is used to be the ancient capital of Armenia. Since 4th century, it is the largest religious center, the residency of Catholicos of All Armenians. Etchmiadzin cathedral is one of the ancient churches in the Christian world, included in the UNESCO World Heritage List (2000), it is the center of Armenian Apostolic Church. It was founded in 301 A.D. by St. Gregory the Illuminator. Later, it was rebuilt and currently it stands as a complex including the Cathedral, Spiritual Academy, residency of the Catholicos of all Armenians, Synod of Armenian Church and a library. The museum of the Cathedral, located behind the Altar, has collection of religious artefacts about Holy Mass, subjects made of gold, silver, precious stones, decorations, colossal silver boiler for making the myrrh and legendary Holy spear.

Visit the church of St. Gayane (VII cent. BC. E.), who died for the spread of Christianity in Armenia. It is located to the south from the Cathedral and was founded in 630 by Catholicos Ezr. Before entering in the town of Echmiadzin visit the majestic St. Hripsime Church. The legend of Hripsime dates from the early days of Christianity. Hripsime fled to Armenia to escape persecution by the Roman Emperor Diocletian. A beautiful but totally devoted follower of Christ, Hripsime refused to marry the pagan Armenian King Tirdat III when ordered, and chose the death of a martyr. A small chapel was erected over the spot where she was murdered. In the 7th century a wondrous church - a masterpiece of Armenian architecture - was built in its place by order of Catholicos Komitas.

A trip to one of the architectural wonders of Armenia: Zvartnots temple (641-661 BC) the temple of "Vigil Forces", which got its name from the word "Zwart", which translated from Armenian means "joyful and beautiful." The remaining ruins give an idea of ​​the rare beauty of this temple. The temple is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site (2000).

Lunch at a local restaurant where you can taste Armenian national dish "Dolma". In Armenia dolma is one of the most popular dishes, people even host an annual culinary "dolma festival." Usually, it is traditionally served with matsun and pounded garlic. To prepare dolma three types of meat are used: pork, beef and lamb. Grape leaves as well as cabbage ones are used. You can also enjoy a lean dolma prepared from cooked legumes which is called "pasuts dolma".

Optional: Master class in cooking dolma.

Return to Yerevan. Dinner in Yerevan at a local restaurant with traditional Caucasian cuisine. You will be offered the Armenian national dish "Harisa". The dish resembles a soup of boiled wheat and chicken. This is a delicious, satisfying and very healthy dish. Not far from the Echmiadzin Musa Dagh memorial was built, where every year on the third Sunday of September Harisa is cooked and served to all guests.

Overnight in Yerevan.

Day 3

Saghmosavank Monastery - Kari Lake - Aragats

Breakfast at the hotel. Trip to the monastery of Saghmosavank located high above the gorge of the river Kasakh. Even in ancient times Saghmosavank was named "Monastery of Psalms" because Monks had obedience - to write psalms. In 1215 the Armenian Prince Vache Vachutyan erected here a temple of St. Sion (Surb Zion). When walking around the monastery of Saghmosavank be attentive to details, where you can find a lot of interesting things. For example, a sundial in the form of half stone flower - right under the window on the wall of a building.

Trip to the mountain lake Kari, located in the crater of the four sharp peaks of Mount Aragats at an altitude of 3207 m. above sea level. A narrow mountain road with cliffs on one side rises higher and higher to the lake of glacial origin. Lunch in a restaurant on the lake where you will be served a traditional "Khash" all year round (in other restaurants, this is a seasonal dish), an integral part of which is cold vodka.

Return to Yerevan. Dinner in Yerevan at a local restaurant with traditional Caucasian cuisine. You will be offered a very popular and well-known traditional Armenian dish "Garni yarakh". This is delicious eggplant stuffed with meat and baked in an oven.

Overnight in Yerevan.

Day 4

Khor Virap - Noravank - Areni (Winery)

Breakfast at the hotel. Drive to Khor Virap - a place of pilgrimage for Armenians all over the world. According to history annals, Armenian pagan king Trdat imprisoned Saint Gregory the Illuminator in a cave which became known as Khor Virap (Deep Hole). Here you can also see the closest and most spectacular view of the gorgeous biblical mountain Ararat (where Noah's ark has landed according to Bible) shining with its two white peaks. From this area Ararat is so near that one feels he can touch those two peaks of the mountain.

Continuing tour to Areni (the entrance of Areni depends on a day, special permission is needed) - the location where archaeologists found the earliest known wine press for stomping grapes, fermentation and storage vessels, drinking cups, etc. Later in 2008 here’s found a 5,500-year-old leather shoe, which is a one-piece leather-hide shoe that has been dated few hundred years older than the one found on Ötzi the Iceman, making it the oldest piece of leather footwear in the world.

Next stop is Noravank monastery complex - a major religious and cultural center. The magnificent landscape of mountains, surrounding the monastery, displays a beautiful array of colors from the sun's reflection. The monastery is remarkable not only for its position among the red rocks but also for its extreme architectural value. The monastery is rich with the Armenian emblematic frets.

Lunch at a local restaurant in Noravank, where you can enjoy juicy "barbecue" cooked in tonir of meat, chicken or sturgeon. Delicious dishes of Armenian cuisine will not leave you indifferent.

Return to Yerevan. Dinner in Yerevan at a local restaurant with traditional Caucasian cuisine. You will be offered a very interesting dish "Khurdzhin". The word "khurdzhin" is translated as bag. The dish looks like a bag of Armenian stuffed lavash. Stuffing can be selected as desired.

Overnight in Yerevan.

Day 5

Sevan - Dilijan - Haghartsin - Goshavank

Breakfast at the hotel. Drive to mountanieus resort Dilijan, or so called “Armenian Switzerland”, which is well-known for its forests as well as for its mysterious flora and fauna. During the drive one can enjoy the unbelievable change of the surrounding environment and land shaft from the mountainous lake to the green and rich forest mountains. Small walking city tour in Dilijan: visit to handicrafts’ street, where one can watch the preparation of different national souvenirs from wood, stone and ceramics. Visit to Haghartsin Monastery complex which is located in the secluded place of the forest. Haghartsin dates back to 11-13th century and represent a magnificent piece of history, culture and architecture. The place is so unique and the scenery with the nature surrounding it is so breathtaking that most of visitors are in awe. Appearing unexpectedly, out of the dense forests, in front of the visitors, the Monastery creates a magical impression of a lost world. Complex includes Church St. Stepanos, St. Mary and St. Gregory’s Church, as well as famous refectory. Visit Goshavank Monastery (11th -13 th cc), situated in the forest beautiful architectural treasure.

Drive to Sevan, one of the greatest high mountainous freshwater lakes of Eurasia, climb on Akhtamar peninsula from where the fascinating view on the Lake is open. Visit Sevanavank monastery, which stands in its greatness on the peninsula overlooking the lake for centuries.

Lunch at a local restaurant near Lake Sevan. Here you can try delicious fish: whitefish and trout caught in Lake Sevan cooked on the coals, and a delicacy - kebab of crayfish.

Return to Yerevan. Dinner in Yerevan at a local restaurant with traditional Caucasian cuisine. You will be offered the Armenian national dish "Tzhvzhik" - a very popular dish, which is prepared from both the sheep and beef liver, heart and lungs. This dish is so loved in Armenia, that a short film of the same name was filmed

Overnight in Yerevan.

Day 6

Garni - Geghard

Breakfast at the hotel. Drive to the only remaining pagan temple in Armenia devoted to the God of Sun – Myrth, in Garni, built in 77AD by King Trdat (Arshakid Dynasty). The temple is Greco-Roman style with characteristic pillars. It stands proudly on a rocky ridge with a deep canyon presenting a beautiful view. The temple was a summer residence for Arshakid dynasty. Visit to the ruins ofRoyal Palace and Royal bath-house nearby. Canyon of Garni -magnificent and outstanding scene which creates the image of falling crags. It obtained the name "Symphony of Stones" due to its view. The fantastic landscape of Garni canyon shakes the human imagination.

Drive to the unique caved temple St. Geghard (12th -13thcc.), the name of which means “holy spear” in the honor of the long-preserved spear, the same spear that pierced the body of crucified Christ. It is now exhibited in the museum of Etchmiadzin Cathedral. Geghard Monastery is included in the UNESCO World Heritage list (2000). The monastery is hidden in the majestic rocks and this scene creates an impression that the rocks have been protecting the ancient monastery for ages.

The program includes local family hosted lunch in village house with watching of “Lavash” (Armenian traditional flat bread baked in stonemake oven) making process. The wonderful opportunity to taste newly baked bread-lavash with cheese and greens.

Optional: For a group of 10-15 people is possible to organize lunch with the preparation of a lamb with pilaf in tonir !!

Return to Yerevan. Gala dinner in Yerevan with folk show program where "Kyufta" is included in the menu. This dish is boiled meat balls from the pre-whipped sour cream to the consistency of meat, served with pilaf with mushrooms.

Overnight in Yerevan.

Day 7

Free time. Transfer