Armenia Guaranteed Departures 2016 Tour
Arrival in Yerevan. Transfer to hotel (without guide).
Accommodation. Overnight in Yerevan.
Yerevan is one of the most ancient cities in the world founded in 782B.C. Now Yerevan is a vibrant and modern European city with much to offer.
In the morning you visit the Matenadaran (UNESCO World's Documentary Heritage) - Depository of Ancient Manuscripts and a serious Institute of Scientific Research on Ancient Manuscripts.
The collection of approximately 17,000 manuscripts includes almost every sphere of Armenian ancient and medieval science and culture - history, geography, philosophy, law, medicine, mathematics, miniature and others, as well as manuscripts in Arabic, Persian, Greek, Syrian, Latin, Ethiopian, Indian, Japanese, etc.
Afterwards you can see the most beautiful panorama of Yerevan City and the biblical Mount Ararat from the top of huge Cascade Monument. Cascade is just a masterpiece in terms of architecture and is decorated in a very stunning way. Inside this monument you find the Cafesdjian Art Center. There are a lot of original statues of modern art. Not far from Cascade you see the Mother Armenia Statue, which symbolizes “peace through strength”. Having its location on a hill overlooking Yerevan City, makes her “The Guardian “of the Armenian Capital.
During your City tour you pass through the Northern Avenue which connects the two Yerevan Famous Squares – The Republic Square and the France Square (where Opera House with the original statue of Rodin is located). The Republic Square in Armenia with the governmental buildings is considered to be one of the most beautiful squares of the world. In the night, the square is especially beautiful because of the “Dancing Fountains” accompanied with classic music of world known Armenian components.
Street tour including: Yerevan State University and the Island of universities, Victory Bridge, Tsitsernakaberd Hill (The Swallow Castle) with Genocide Museum, Sports & Concerts complex, Kiev Bridge, Parliament, Residence of President, Academy of Sciences.
Evening free. Overnight in Yerevan.
(*Tip: Evening and night life of Yerevan are full of music, plays, performances, shows. In case you like live jazz this is a unique chance to enjoy it as Yerevan has rather rich Jazz traditions (called also the „New Orleans of the East“). Lots of rock and pop bands, the Opera House with almost daily shows and numerous concert halls. (You’d better book cultural events with your local guide directly).
This tour includes UNESCO World Heritage Sites which are "must see" places. Today you visit the religious center of Armenia – Echmiadzin which is the "Vatican" city of Armenia with the Holy See of the Armenian Apostolic Church where the Supreme Patriarch (Catholicos) of All Armenians resides. Armenia is the first Christian country in the world since 301A.D. and the world's oldest official Christian church is to be found in Echmiadzin - the Mother Cathedral of Echmiadzin. In the cathedral you can attend live the liturgy. Continue to St. Hripsime church (7th century), a true masterpiece of early medieval Armenian architecture. On the way back to Yerevan visit the Ruins of Zvartnots Cathedral - the place of “celestial angels”. The remnants of Zvartnots, even in ruins, are a majestic sight. Evening free.
Use you free time for visiting the Vernissage Market in the City Centre - an arts and crafts open-air bazaar which opens only at weekends. You will find here different souvenirs, pictures, sculptures, traditional carpets and rugs and so on. Overnight in Yerevan.
A fantastic tour dedicated to exploration of Southern Armenia combining the magic of Armenia's finest medieval architecture with stunning landscapes by driving through the agricultural heart of Armenia. Our first stop will be at the Khor Virap Monastery - the most important place of pilgrimage of Armenia. St. Gregory the Illuminator – the first Catholic of all Armenians, had been imprisoned in “Khor Virap” (deep dungeon) for 13 years. From here you get a unique view of the holy Armenian mountain Ararat (5165m.), on which (according to the Bible) Noah’s ark landed after the World flood.
As soon as we pass the Ararat Plain we can experience the untamed beauty of Southern Armenia - surreal red rocks providing an eerie echo, honey-colored villages sandwiched between them. Continue to the previous residence of Syunik's bishops – Noravank monastery, nestled at the edge of the narrow gorge in the impressive mountainous landscape with peculiar red hanging rocks. The structure distinguishes by a unique harmony of architectural forms and decorations.
On the way back to Yerevan visit to the winery in the village Areni, wine tasting made from the endemic grapes. Arrival in Yerevan. Overnight in Yerevan.
Breakfast at the hotel. Tour to the Lake Sevan - the 2nd largest fresh-water high-altitude lake in the world after Titicaca (Los Andes, Bolivia) and the largest lake in Armenia and the Caucasus Region. Lake Sevan, this wonder of nature, is the pearl of incomparable beauty with stunning turquoise waters which is also home for unique bird species
On the picturesque peninsula you visit the Sevanavank monastery (9c), which once used to serve as a place of exile of the Armenian nobility. Here you find unique cross stones (khachqar). The Cross-Stone is a typical manifestation of the Armenian culture, as other nations do not have this type of culture, and is already a UNESCO World Heritage.
Proceeding to Dilijan SPA town in the Dilijan National Park, a protected area renowned for its serene lakes, picturesque hill trails and peaceful villages. Many poets used to say, "If there are woods, mountains, streams and mineral waters in paradise, it must be like Dilijan”. Due to its forested mountains and mild climate, Dilijan is named "Armenia's Little Switzerland".
On the most beautiful and oldest streets of the Old Dilijan - Sharambeyan you will find small art schools and souvenir shops. Continue to Haghartsin Monastery (10.-14. cc.), a fairy-tale monastery set amidst flower-filled glade in a dense rainforest. It’s where people see a perfect harmony of untouched nature and splendid architecture where the human creativity and efforts only added to the overall beauty of the entire territory. Return to Yerevan.
Overnight in Yerevan.
Just outside of Armenia's capital, a quiet mountain road leads high above the city, offering a glimpse into Earth's ancient history. Firstly we stop first at Charent's Arch - the breathtaking lookout point of the biblical Mount Ararat (known from the Bible as the landing place of Noah's Ark).
Drive to the Geghard Monastery carved out of a huge monolithic rock. Geghard is an incredible ancient Armenian monastery, partly carved out of a mountain. It is said that the Holy Lance that pierced the body of Christ was kept here. The architectural forms and the decoration of Geghard's rock premises show that Armenian builders could not only create superb works of architecture out of stone, but also hew them in solid rock. It is included in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Continue to the Garni Pagan Temple, the only Hellenistic temple in the Caucasus. Gracing the hillside the temple was dedicated to the God of Sun, Mithra and comprises also royal palace ruins, Roman Baths with a well preserved mosaic.
In Garni village you will have master class of traditional Armenian bread "lavash" being baked in tonir (ground oven). The preparation, meaning and appearance of traditional bread as an expression of culture in Armenia has been inscribed on UNESCO’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. Drive back to Yerevan. Evening free. Overnight in Yerevan.
Transfer from hotel to the airport (without guide).
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