Day 1: Yerevan. Meeting in “Zvartnots” International Airport in Yerevan. Transfer to the hotel. Support in check-in and other formalities. Salutatory dinner in the Armenian restaurant with national folk music. Trip to Ejmiatsin, visiting the Cathedral of Ejmiatsin and the magnificent ruins of Zvartnots Temple that are under UNESCO protection. Return to Yerevan. Evening round-up excursion through Yerevan. Overnight in the hotel.
Day 2: Haghartsin Monastic Complex. Breakfast in the hotel. Excursion to the “Armenian Pearl” Lake Sevan. Here you can enjoy the fabulous view of Armenian landscape. Trip to Lake Parz (eng. Clear). The water in the lake is clear (which explains the name of it) and has a green hue; the forest comes close to the coastline, and powerful trees bent down to the lake and reflect in the smooth surface of the water. Traditional dinner close to the lake-shore. Visiting Haghartsin monastic complex of X-XI centuries. Return to Yerevan. Overnight in the hotel.
Day 3: Maundy Thursday. Breakfast in the hotel. Early excursion to Aragatsotn marz. Visiting Armenian Alphabet Square and Saghmosavank church where you will present at the motets and will take an immediate part in feet-washing process. «A solemn performance of feet-washing» takes place at Maundy Thursday in all Armenian Apostolic churches that symbolizes the reverence of Jesus Christ for the human essence. Once at this day Jesus Christ washed the feet of his 12 disciples and taught the human beings to be humble and totally merciful. How does it happen: 12 christened people go up to the consecrate table, then during the motet the priest wash their right foot and after that sanctify by the myrrh. Only christened men can participate in this ceremony. Trip to Ohannavank monastery, to the churches of Karby and Moughni. National dinner right in the monastic complex of Moughni. Visiting church of Saint Mesrop Mashtots in Oshakan. Return to Yerevan. Overnight in the hotel.
Day 4: Good Friday. Breakfast in the hotel. Excursion to the fortress-monastery of XVII century - Khor Virap. You are given a rare opportunity to enjoy the spectacular view of the biblical Ararat Mountain - an immortal symbol of Armenia. According to ecclesiastic tradition Grigor Lusavorich (eng. Gregory the Illuminator) - the founder of Christianity in Armenia - was imprisoned in the deep pit full of poisonous snakes and insects by the order of tsar Trdat III for 13 years. Gregory the Illuminator was exposed in spreading “alien religion”. Today this pit is open for You! Excursion to Noravank - a monastery (XII cent.) which is located between some intricate plumb rocks right at the ledge of the canyon. Traditional dinner. Trip to Areni. Visiting the Wine Factory in Areni and tasting wines. Return to Yerevan. Overnight in the hotel.
Day 5: Holy Saturday. Breakfast in the hotel. Excursion to the Scientific research Museum-Institute of ancient manuscripts Matenadaran. Right after visiting Vernissage - outdoor market selling handmade arts and crafts, where you can purchase something as a keepsake. Free time. At 5 pm - presence at the Candlelight Divine Liturgy (arm. Tchragaluyts) in one of Yerevan churches. Overnight in the hotel.
Day 6: Revival of Christ. Breakfast in the hotel. Preparations to the holiday: cooking Armenian national Easter dishes (dyed eggs, fish, pilau with raisins, gata, cakes). Easter dinner. Continuation of Easter celebration. Festal banquet in one of the national restaurants with the assistance of folk ensembles of singers and dancers. Overnight in the hotel.
Day 7: Breakfast in the hotel. Excursion to Garni and Geghard – the formal summer residence of Armenian tsars and the rocky monastery which are included in the list of World Heritage monuments. Transfer to “Zvartnots” International Airport. Harrowing farewells.
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Europe Armenia Spiritual Odyssey Pilgrimage/Spirituality
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