Armenia – Connecting the Mind, Body and Soul (Trekking)

Armenia – Connecting the Mind, Body and Soul (Trekking)

16 days|

Overview

If you are the type of traveler who enjoys the deep connection with nature, desire to fulfill your spiritual hunger and encounter the hidden mysteries of prehistoric times, then this 16-days trekking journey is just for you.
On your way you will trek and ascend the highest peak of the Lesser Caucasus (4095m), encounter the Geghama Mountains with volcanic lakes and mystic Dragon Stones created by our prehistoric ancestors, wrapped with magic and mysticism and lots of unanswered questions about their existence, enjoy direct and genuine interaction with Yezidi nomad tribes wandering with their flocks who will share with you their secrets of living in harmony with nature.
Your trekking journey will be also accompanied by awe-inspiring sites of Armenian culture and heritage with vivid examples of mountain carved UNESCO World Heritage site Geghard, the only preserved pagan temple in the region Garni, and such wonders of nature as Symphony of Stones, with its silent music composed by virtuoso nature itself, and Devil’s bridge with its stalactites of marvelous colors created and polished over millennia, and many more to be pinned in your memory. 
Spice up your adventure with paragliding over Lake Sevan, have unforgettable indoor surfing experience, try cannoning in mysterious caves and enjoy the variety of adventure activities that Armenia has to offer.
Spoil your taste buds with Churchill's favorite brandy, the legendary Ararat, and most genuine and authentic Armenian cuisine.
Detox from your daily routine and change your understanding of what is ordinary.

Start  Yerevan, Armenia                                              Physical rating  (2 out of 5)

Finish  Yerevan, Armenia                                            Group size  Min 4, Max 15

Tour Theme  Trekking                                                Ages  Min 14

Days  16 Days/15 Nights                                             Trip Availability  June – September

Are you fit for this tour? 

  • While this trip doesn't require an athletic level of fitness, it’s essential to be at least moderately fit if you want to partake in all activities. The treks on this trip cover distances of minimum 7km, and maximum 14km. You can find further detail in the itinerary.

Itinerary

Welcome to Yerevan, the capital city of Armenia. Our tour guide will greet you and will help you with all the ground handling services. After a short Welcome Briefing meeting with the tour guide you will check in to your hotel. 
Lunch at Lavash restaurant. Time to explore the Armenian capital, the pink city, located at the shadow of the biblical Mount Ararat, which is one of the oldest capitals in the world: we’ll explore Republic Square, Cascade, Opera House. A nice stroll in the heart of the city. Past the radio ‘‘Yerevan” we drive to the impressive Cascade - which forms the heart of the city. From here you have a wonderful view of the whole capital.
Visit Megerian Carpet factory with participation in traditional Armenian food preparation master class with one of the most demanded and famous chefs Mr. Sedrak Mamoulian and have your first encounter with genuine and authentic Armenian food during your welcome dinner. 
After dinner free time in Yerevan. Evening Yerevan is another highlight that should be added to your bucket list. Cafes and bars are full of locals at night. Join them for glass of local Armenian wine. You’ll not regret.

Accommodation

  • Overnight in Yerevan at hotel 3* on BB/DBL basis. Single room supplement can be provided at extra cost. Request in advance.

Included Activities

  • Yerevan city guided walking tour
  • Megerian Carpet

Meals Included

  • Lunch in Yerevan
  • Welcome Dinner at Megerian Carpet

Important Notes

It’s important that you attend the welcome meeting, as we will be distributing details and next of kin information such as brochures with useful info about Yerevan and Armenia, maps, places to eat and things and activities to do around. 

What to Bring with you

Bring your own camping mattresses and sleeping bags. 
Proper trekking outfit and pants, comfortable trekking boots, thermal clothes (few sets), thermal and regular socks, warm clothes, warm hat & sun cap, swimwear, fleece, windproof and waterproof jacket, raincoat, gloves, trekking poles, backpack, thermos, sun cream & lip balm, mosquito spray, sunglasses, flashlight, forehead flashlight, power bank, personal first aid kit and hygiene supplies. 
We provide only the tents, and extra sleeping bags and mattresses in case someone needs a spare one. You are more than welcome to bring your own professional equipment and accessories.

After breakfast at the hotel our morning trip begins from the capital city Yerevan. Today’s trekking starts right after transfer towards the volcanic beautiful mountain lake Akna with vivid blue color. It is a small jewel of nature at the foot of mount Azhdahak.
Trekking to the lake Akna.

Accommodation

  • Overnight in camp at 3,035m. 

Included Activities

  • Lake Akna
  • Mount Azhdahak

Meals Included

  • Breakfast in the hotel
  • Lunch /lunch box/ 
  • Dinner in camp

Important Notes

Trail length: 12km
Duration: 5 hrs
Elevation: 1000m – 2060m – 3033m

Our day starts with trekking to Mount Azhdahak, the highest peak of the plateau that dominates the mysterious mountains of the Geghama range. The gradual ascent enables us to build the slow, steady rhythm required for walking at high altitude. We reach the summit and have a chance to enjoy the unforgettable views of the serene lake in the crater and alpine meadows of rare beauty. Back to camp, dinner, and overnight.

Accommodation

  • Overnight in camp

Included Activities

  • Mount Azhdahak
  • Crater lake on mount Azhdahak

Meals Included

  • Breakfast in camp
  • Lunch /lunch box/ 
  • Dinner in camp

Important Notes

Trail length: 9km
Duration: 7 hrs
Elevation: 650m up and 450m down

Today we trek to Lake Vank at 2,600m. We enjoy the sights of colorful summer meadows, cross small rivers. Along our route, we’ll see prehistoric ritual Dragon Stones often located at the source of rivers and springs. They are 10-20 feet-long fish-shaped stelae with a stream of water flowing from the mouth of a fish and as per the mystic legends around them they were meant to protect the water sources from dragons.

Accommodation

  • Overnight in camp

Included Activities

  • Lake Vank
  • Prehistoric Dragon Stones

Meals Included

  • Breakfast in camp
  • Lunch /lunch box/ 
  • Dinner in camp

Important Notes

Trail length: 9km
Duration: 5 hrs
Elevation: 600m down

We start trekking towards the Khosrov National Park. There are colorful butterflies, lizards on rocks, and rare birds on the way. We also expect to meet Yezidi nomads roaming the pastures with their flocks. In case we meet them, they will host us in their camps where we can encounter genuine interaction with them and see how they live in perfect harmony with nature. 
We continue our trail towards Glan village. Glan plateau is inhabited by few families of beekeepers. Here we are hosted by one of the families.  It is a unique opportunity to get closer to rural life in the perfect wilderness, interact with locals and make new friends, and participate in lavash making procedure that could go into your travel bucket list, while you are in Armenia. We spend the overnight by camping in tents in the beautiful garden of our hosts. Dinner and overnight in Glan village.

Accommodation

  • Overnight in camp

Included Activities

  • Khosrov nature park
  • Glan village
  • Lavash baking

Meals Included

  • Breakfast in camp
  • Lunch /lunch box/ 
  • Dinner in camp

Important Notes

Trail length: 11km
Duration: 7 hrs
Elevation: 700m down

We start the day visiting the evocative monastery of St. Stepanos (13th century) on a plateau surrounded by steep mountainous slopes. 
Stop on the route and swim in a fantastic Astghik waterfall named after the pagan goddess Astghik. The legend says she used to take her bath in this waterfall. In a deep gorge where the sun hardly reaches the bottom there is a natural pool formed by the river, perfect for swimming. Time to rest and soak in the river and enjoy the scenic views before dinner and overnight at camp.
Delicious home-made dinner is waiting for us at Glan village. 

Accommodation

  • Overnight in camp

Included Activities

  • St. Stepanos monastery
  • Khosrov nature park
  • Astghik waterfall

Meals Included

  • Breakfast in camp
  • Lunch /lunch box/ 
  • Dinner in camp

Important Notes

Trail length: 7km
Duration: 3 hrs
Elevation: 200m up and down

We begin the return journey with a final hike from Glan to Symphony of Stones. These are enormous basalt columns formed by volcanic activities in the Goght river valley. The hiking is almost 10km and those who would be tired can follow the group by bus. Continuing to Geghard village, the trail contours through pleasant picnic areas, then a narrow dirt road descends into the rocky gorge. The view is charming, with superb panoramas of surrounding mountains. Here we take time to visit the unique rock-carved Geghard Monastery (UNESCO World Heritage site) and move towards our next stop. The legend says the name Geghard was given to the monastery as the legendary spear - “Geghard'' that pierced Christ was brought there.
Here we are, in Garni Temple, the only preserved pagan temple in the region dedicated to the God Mitra, the God of the Sun, standing in perfect harmony with the surrounding nature. Drive back to Yerevan. Dinner in Yerevan.

Accommodation

  • Overnight in Yerevan at hotel 3* on BB/DBL basis

Included Activities

  • Symphony of Stones
  • Goght river
  • Geghard village
  • Geghard Monastery
  • Garni Pagan Temple

Meals Included

  • Breakfast in camp
  • Lunch /lunch box/  
  • Dinner in Yerevan

Important Notes

Trail length: 9km
Duration: 4 hrs
Elevation: 300m up and down

Free day in Yerevan to rest and unwind. Back to civilization to sum up our emotions after our adventures in the mountains. As optional activities you may choose to visit the unique “Wine and Grapes” Spa or have a guided tour in legendary Cognac factory where your taste buds will be spoiled by famous brandy Ararat that Churchill loved immensely. 

*** These activities are provided as optional activities at extra cost. Please let us know in your application form which Optional Activities you prefer. The detailed description and prices of all Optional Activities will be provided in a separate brochure.  

Accommodation

  • Overnight in Yerevan at hotel 3* on BB/DBL basis

Meals Included

  • Breakfast in the hotel

Important Notes

Our tour leader will be assisting guests in all souvenir shops / Vernissage and bookings of optional activities.

Transfer by bus to the base of the highest peak of Armenia to start our journey. The barren alpine scenery with only small clusters of scrubs is in stark contrast with the snowy peaks and deep blue skies. We start the trek towards the Western (4,008m) peaks of the Mount Aragats. We will have lunch break en route. Ascend and visit Lake Kari. The walking consists of a series of ups and downs with impressive views worth the effort. 
After our trekking the road leads us to the intersection of two mountain streams where we have an opportunity to admire the wild landscape as we visit Amberd Fortress (2,300 m). This majestic stone fortress dates back to the 7th century but its current buildings date from the 12th century. It’s easy to see why the site was chosen – at 2,300m above sea level it commands a position above the farms and trade routes of the Ararat Plain. The ruins of a chapel, 13th-century bathhouse and cistern stand downhill from the fortress.
Back to Yerevan City for dinner. 

Accommodation

  • Overnight in Yerevan at hotel 3* on BB/DBL basis

Included Activities

  • Amberd fortress
  • Qari lake
  • Mount Aragats

Meals Included

  • Breakfast in the hotel
  • Lunch /lunch box/
  • Dinner in Yerevan

Important Notes

Trail length: 14km
Duration: 7-8 hrs
Elevation: 800m

Todays program will be done mainly by bus and includes small hikes to give you opportunity to relax. The morning starts by heading to the Southern part of Armenia. From Yerevan we move towards Khor Virap Monastery (in Armenian stands for “deep dungeon”). Legend says the pagan King Trdat III imprisoned St Gregory the Illuminator (Surp Grigor Lusavorich) here for 12 years. These days, pilgrims climb down a metal ladder into the well where the saint was incarcerated. The Monastery continues to be a holy site of the Armenian Apostolic Church and an important pilgrimage location. The walled, religious complex also stands before the snowcapped flanks of Mount Ararat, offering a spectacular view of the mountain and cutting a striking silhouette in and of itself. 
Our next highlight is wine tasting in Areni cave and witnessing the oldest shoe in the world. In 2007 the archaeologists discovered the world's oldest known winery dating back 6100 years at this cave. The next year, an archaeologist found the world's oldest leather shoe dating to 3500 BC. 
On the way, we gain impressive views of the mountains, bizarre rocks, and weirdly sculptured erosions to add to our impressions. En route, we visit Noravank monastery, the masterpiece of medieval architect Momik situated above the beautiful gorge. Overnight at Hermon village.

Accommodation

  • Overnight in hotel in Hermon village on BB/DBL basis

Included Activities

  • Khor Virap
  • Noravank Monastery
  • Caving at Areni cave.

Meals Included

  • Breakfast in the hotel
  • Lunch /lunch box/
  • Dinner in Hermon village

From the hotel we start a hiking trail with a length of 7 km. Our first stop is Gladzor, a major center of science and calligraphy in medieval Armenia. Continue the hike to Spitakavor Monastery we pass the village of Vernashen. Walking through the village we have an opportunity to meet and chat with locals and immerse ourselves in their traditional way of life. The trail continues through rough slopes and leads directly to Proshaberd Citadel (hike to Proshaberd optional) decorating the rocky peak. Here we are rewarded for our efforts by the dramatic views of the mountains and the valley below. 

Accommodation

  • Overnight in hotel in Hermon village on BB/DBL basis

Included Activities

  • Gladzor medieval center of science and calligraphy
  • Spitakavor Monastery

Meals Included

  • Breakfast in the hotel
  • Lunch /lunch box/
  • Dinner in Hermon village

Important Notes

Trail length: 11km
Duration: 4 hrs
Elevation: 1600m - 2000m - 1600m

Another beautiful morning to continue our walking adventure in Southern Armenia. We reach the fertile valley of Yeghegis river, where we hike to the isolated monastery Tsaghkats Kar, an enchanting site hidden between the mountains and Smbataberd citadel built by King Smbat. The set up of the citadel is perhaps the most beautiful in Armenia, with a river valley at your feet. Here we have the blissful feeling of freedom from the mundane that truly comes after a few days of traveling in the heart of nature. Our next stop will be at the Shatin observatory to watch Bezoar Goats (Capra aegagrus). Special rigid hairball in their stomach is called a bezoar, and that’s the reason why they got that name. Being in the heart of winemaking of Armenia we can’t miss the opportunity to enjoy the tour in the wine cellars (maran in Armenian) of a small winery in Aghavnadzor.

Accommodation

  • Overnight in hotel in Hermon village on BB/DBL basis

Included Activities

  • Tsakhats Kar Monastery
  • Smbataberd
  • Shatin observation point 
  • Wine tour in the cellars (maran) of a small winery: Aghavnadzor

Meals Included

  • Breakfast in the hotel
  • Lunch /lunch box/
  • Dinner in Hermon village

Important Notes

Trail length: 9km
Duration: 4 hrs
Elevation: 1600 - 2000 - 1600m

After breakfast, we start the trip to our hiking start point and go down from one of the highest river canyons in Armenia (800m). On the way, we will see an abandoned village, left by its inhabitants almost 100 years ago. The picturesque and forested trail continues to the Middle Age bridge and goes up to the top of the canyon.
We reach one of the most important monastic complexes in Armenia - Tatev Monastery (9th century). Visiting this architectural masterpiece can be another tick off in your travel bucket list in Armenia. 

Accommodation

  • Overnight in guest house in Tatev village on BB/DBL basis

Included Activities

  • Tatev Monastery 

Meals Included

  • Breakfast in the hotel
  • Lunch /lunch box/
  • Dinner in Tatev village

Important Notes

Trail length: 13,3km
Duration: 5 hrs
Elevation: 1700 - 1100 - 1800m

Early in the morning, our hiking starts from the monastery to Devil’s bridge, one of the true natural wonders of Armenia. Over the millennia, wind and water have created this marvel, polishing and piercing the petrified lava. The width of this natural bridge, along which runs the asphalt road to Tatev Monastery, is 60 m, the length 30 m. You may meet many locals swimming near the bridge in the warm, salubrious springs, ringed by stalactites of marvelous colors. The most intrepid explorer can try Cannoning as an optional activity. Descend by ropes to see the mysterious caves below the springs, jump from small cliffs, waterfalls and water slides. That’s worth a try!
Those who want to use “Wings of Tatev” Aerial Tramway, we can transfer them by bus towards the departure point. It’s the world's longest nonstop reversible cable car floats from Halidzor over the gaping Vorotan River Gorge to the Tatev Monastery. The 5.7km trip (12 minutes each way) soars over breathtaking scenery. (Optional activity)
Depart at 11 am towards Selim’s Pass. From far, we can observe Orbelyan Caravanserai from the 14th century. Here once passed the famous trade route - The Silk Road.
In the evening we reach Lake Sevan. Its cool, turquoise blue water invites you to swim during the summer season. 
On the Sevan Peninsula, we visit Sevanavank Monastic complex, which dates back to the 9th century. Almost no visit to Armenia is complete without visiting one of the highest mountainous lakes in the world. Get ready to tick off another bucket list location in Armenia.
Back to Yerevan.  

Accommodation

  • Overnight in Yerevan at hotel 3* on BB/DBL basis

Included Activities

  • Devil’s bridge
  • Selims Pass and Caravanserrai
  • Sevan lake

Optional Activity at extra cost

  • Cannoning (full description and pricing will be provided separately)

Meals Included

  • Breakfast at the guest house
  • Lunch /lunch box/
  • Dinner in Yerevan

Important Notes

Trail length: 6,26km
Duration: 3 hrs
Elevation: 1450 - 1005 - 995m.

***You are required to do the mandatory PCR test before your departure from Armenia. Test will be organized at Yerevan hotel early in the morning before you can continue your day in Yerevan. We will bring the Lab specialist to the hotel for the PCR test, just to take special care of you and save you the hustle of travels and extra cost, and give you more time to enjoy the last day in Armenia. The COVID 19 cases are very low in Armenia and it is safer than in many other countries, however if the results of your PCR test will be positive and you have to extend your stay in Armenia, we will guide you and assist you in all the necessary processes, offer affordable accommodation at extra cost. We take extra care of our customers and we are there for you in any situation.
The rest of the day is free until dinner. Explore it on your own, get some souvenirs to remind you of your amazing adventure in Armenia, enjoy the night city in local pubs with live music, try the delicious food in restaurants and pin these moments in your memory.
The Farewell dinner will be in “Pandok” Tavern Yerevan for another delicious encounter with Armenian cuisine accompanied by traditional Armenian music, dance and culture. 

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES AT EXTRA COST

You have an entire free day in Yerevan! Use the opportunity to spice up this adventure with optional activities at extra cost. You can manage the level of your own daring experiences and the spectrum of emotions during this tour. Please let us know in your application form which Optional Activities you prefer. The detailed description and prices of Optional Activities will be provided in a separate brochure.  

Accommodation

  • Overnight in Yerevan at hotel 3* on BB/DBL basis

Included Activities

  • Farewell dinner with Armenian folk dance and music

Meals Included

  • Breakfast in the hotel
  • Farewell dinner at “Pandok” Tavern Yerevan

See you soon in Armenia.
We hope that while looking at Armenia pinned in your travel map, will bring back unforgettable memories and experience during your two wheels adventure with us!

Want to make this adventure more than just another cycling tour, you can choose to spice it up with these optional activities at extra cost.
The price and detailed description of Optional Activities will be provided in separate brochure.

  • “Wine and Grapes” Spa
  • Ararat Cognac factory
  • Cannoning in Devil's bridge
  • “Wings of Tatev” Aerial Tramway
  • Optional activities in Yerevan

Let us know and our flexible system and professional team will help you put together an itinerary that suits you the best and will customize your travel experience.

Included

Accommodation on BB/DBL room basis
Meals on FB basis
Transportation and all transfers
Trekking tour leader and guide
Welcome package, maps and other important information
Souvenirs
PCR test (at extra cost upon request)
All museum and entrance tickets according to the program, travel permits in restricted areas
Optional activities (at extra cost upon request)
Water is open during the trip

Not Included

Air tickets
Visa
Travel insurance

Tour Essentials

Tour Essentials provide additional information about the tours, some general guidelines, safety and travel guidelines. Tour Essentials may vary for each tour. The detailed package will be provided at the time of booking.
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