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Zvartnots International Airport, Yerevan
Meeting at Zvartnots International airport. Passport control. Transfer to the hotel.
Breakfast. Visit the Museum and Fortress of Erebuni. Erebuni museum was founded in 1968, when the 2750 anniversary of Yerevan was celebrated. In the Museum of Erebuni the acheological remains found are exposed which have been found nearby Arin Berd, Shengavit and Karmir Blur. The history of the city of Yerevan is closely linked to the history of the Urartu state. The city of Yerevan was founded by King Argishti in 782 A.C. and he called it Erebuni. It is here, in the museum and in the fortress, you can learn about the history of Yerevan and the state of Urartu. After the tour, continue towards the Archaeological Museum of Shengavit and the Institute of Ancient Monuscripts – Matenadaran. Welcome dinner in a traditional restaurant where everyone can taste the Armenian cuisine and appreciate Armenian folklore.
Breakfast. The tour begins with a visit to the Pagan Garni Temple, located between earth and sky, on top of huge granite rocks. The Temple of Garni was built in the first century. In 1679 the temple collapsed due to an earthquake and rebuilt in 1975. Visit Gheghard Monastery. Its name is derived from the famous spear that served to pierce the Christ in order to make sure of his death, which according to legend was brought to Armenia by the Apostle Taddeo and kept in the monastery along with many other relics. Although the main chapel was built in 1215, the monastery was founded in the 4th century. Lunch in a nice local restaurant, where you will have the opportunity to participate in the preparation of the Armenian lavash bread. The lavash is an Armenian bread, very thin and is maintained for a long time. Is is listed in UNESCO Herritage List. After this we will continue to Ljashen. Ljashen is a complex of archaeological monuments of various eras. It is a pre-arboreal residence which was surrounded by cyclopean walls, inside are the cyclopean fortresses and the sepulch camp. ReturnYerevan.
Breakfast. Departure to Aragatsotn region. Visit to Aghzq. The village of Aghzk is known for its tomb, which was built in the middle of the fifth century. It has preserved the ashes of the pagan and Christian kings of the Arshakuni dynasty (66-428 D.C.). Tour continues to the place called Nerqin / Verin Naver. This monument is a arcaeological treasure with various examples of the Middle Ages and the Bronze Age. Visit Amberd fortress which was a medieval citadel. It was built in the 10th century, 7 km north towards Byurakan village on the southern slope of Mount Aragats located at a height of 2300 m asl, on the triangular promontory formed by the rivers Amberd and Arkashen, it has a spectacular view of Mount Ararat and on the Ararat Valley. The Amberd Church was built by Vahram Pahlavouni in 1026 and is a beautiful church. Return to Yerevan. Dinner at a restaurant.
Breakfast. Departure to Aragatsotn region, visit Aruj church and Shamiram ruins Here are preserved the remains of the ancient fortifications (IIc.AC). In the village cemetery there are the preserved ruins of the basilica church, built during the 5th century and interesting gravestones from the V-VII centuries. Between the villages of Shamiram and Arutch there are
historical-architectural monuments of the second half of 2000A.C. and of the beginning of 1000 A.C. It includes the ruins of the old city, an artificial water reservoir, the remains of the residences, the group of tombs. Later on the tour continue towards the Hellenistic city Beniamin which is located in the Shirak region. The last point of this day is Gyumri. Gyumri is the administrative center of Shirak. It is the second city of the country. In written sources, Gyumri is mentioned since ancient times as Kumayri and then – Gyumri. After the annexation of Eastern Armenia in Russia, it was renamed to Alexandroupolis and in the Soviet era Leninakan was named. Dinner and overnight in Gyumri.
Breakfast. Tour in the old city Aleksandrapol (XXI s.). From Gyumri tour continue towards Lori. Here you can visit two spectacular monasteries Sanahin and Haghpat, which are UNESCO Heritage sites. Sanahin was built by Armenian princes from Constantinople in the 900s, and Haghpat, was founded during the reign of Ashot III of the Bagratuni dynasty. The oldest structure of the monastery was built by Queen Khosrvanuch in 977-991. Lunch in a nice local restaurant. Visit Haghartsin monastery. Haghartsin Monastery (10th-13th century), a striking example of the harmony of nature with architecture. The monastery includes two churches and a chapel. There are also several khachkasr (huge carved stone crosses) on the walls of the churches. Dinner and overnight in Dilijan.
Breakfast. Tour begins with the visit of the Sharambean Street in Diljan famous as the street to arts and crafts. From here we will move on to Sevan peninsula. The church on the peninsula was built durinf 10-11 ages. Visit Noratus which is the largest cemetery of Khachkar in the territory of Armeniaand in all over the world. According to the legend during the Mongol-Tartar attack hundreds of khachqars have been dressed like soldiers and seeing this terrible scene the enemy escaped. Here there is also a small chapel which, according to another legend, has saved an entire village. Visit to Hayrivanq. The Hayravank monastic complex of 9 -12th centuries is located on the northeastern coast of Lake Sevan. Some dwellings have been discovered from the grounds of the monastery, among them the oldest thing is a glossy black vase – belonging to the early Bronze Age. Lunch. Drive to Sisian via Selim caravanserai. It is the place for lodging for travelers who traveled from Europe to the East. Overnight in Sisian.
Breakfast. Visit to the archaeological museum of Sisian. Visit Karahunj, an ancient observatory that is similar to the Stonehenge of England. Visit Tatev monastery which was a prominent religious and cultural center of Armenia. It was founded in IVs. The monastery played a major role during Syunik’s liberation struggles. To get here we will take the longest cable car of the world which is of 5700 m lenght. Visit the cave village of Khndzoresk, which offers the most spectacular view of ancient Armenia. The role of this village was especially important for the years 1722-1730, during the liberation struggles of Suniq. Mkhithar sparapet was buried here with his son Aaron and his wife Gohar. These tombs are sacred to the Armenians. Departure for Goris. Dinner and overnight.
Breakfast. Tour begins with a visit to Areni. Areni is an archaeological site located in Vayoc Dzor. The route faces several mountain passes, the most important among which is the Vorotan, and touches peasant villages, isolated monuments and archaeological sites located about 120 km from Yerevan, on the bank of the river Arpa. This village is famous for its red wine. There are numerous wine cellars here. The Aren grape variety, in the area of Mount Ararat, is the most famous and it is one of the oldest in the world, dating back to 1000 BC. We will visit to Areni cave where the oldest shoe of the world has been found. Visit Khor Virap monastery and ancient city of Artashat: Artashat was one of the glorious capitals of Armenia, a center of Hellenistic culture and an important emporium. Artashat – the ancient capital of Armenia (founded in 166 BC) was located right on the main road linking the Black Sea with India and Central Asia. Plutarch called Artashat Carthage Armenia underlining the fact that Bacchae of Euphidis was performed in the city of Artashat in 53 BC. Khor Virap monastery իս one of the pilgrimage places connected with the name of Gregory the Illuminator. Return to Yerevan for dinner and overnight.
Breakfast. Visit Ejmiatsin: Ejmiatsin is the religious center of Armenia and the residence of the head of the Armenian Apostolic Church, Catolicos. Ejmiatsin Cathedral is the first Christian churches in the world. Then the tour continues to Metsamor. Metsamor is an archaeological site from where the symbolic stones in the shape of a phallus date back to the Bronze Age (V-II millennium BC). Some of these stones are of 3m height. The objects found in the area are exposed in the nearby Museum. Visit the Ruins of Zvartnoc Cathedral, which is one of the masterpieces world architecture. It was built in 641-643 by the Catholicos Nerses the builder. Get back to Yerevan, where you visit Tsitsernakaberd. It is the Memorial of the Genocide victims. Dinner and overnight in Yerevan.
Transfer to the airport.