Want to taste an exciting blend of old and new? - Join us in the adventure of revealing the legends of an ancient land, a land of fascinating, unspoiled nature, innumerable historic monuments spiced with spirit of Paganism and Christianity, a motherland of ancient innocent civilization, hospitable people and respected traditions.
The 1st Day you'll be welcomed at Zvartnots airport and roomed in a hotel in Yerevan. After a short rest you'll undertake a tour around Yerevan, the magnificent capital of Armenia, representing a sweet mixture of East and West cultures, ancient and modern. You are in Yerevan for the first time? Then prepare yourself for fresh experiences and unknown feelings, for that's what you are sure to have seeing sites of Yerevan by the daylight, and even more seeing magic Yerevan at night. You have been to Yerevan before? Then get ready to surprising changes in the appearance of the city, for Yerevan has welcomed the 21st century with new hotels, restaurants, theaters, attractions and shopping centers.
The 2nd Day you'll enjoy sightseeing in the vicinage of Yerevan with first stop at Echmiatsin, one of the ancient capitals of Armenia, with the Mother Church, The Cathedral of Holly Echmiatsin, a masterpiece of classical Armenian architecture, founded in 301 AD. You'll see the Museum of the Cathedral and visit the Treasury, where an experienced guide will tell you the exciting story of each of the exhibits. Your second stop will be at ruins of Zvartnots temple (built in 7-th c., destroyed by an earthquake in 10-th c.), a magnificent massive complex of temple, palace, wine cellars and food storage. Next site will be the medieval fortress of Amberd, a fortress of great defensive significance, which sheltered people of nearby villages during the enemy's attacks. Amberd is situated at a height of 2300 m on the slopes of Aragats Mountain. And the last point of the tour will be Saghmosavank (XIII century), perching on the edge of precipitous gorge, amazing by compact arrangement of the monuments, clever use of the terrain and well thought-out decorations. The ensemble is famous for its depository of manuscripts.
The 3rd Day you'll spare on visiting the temple of Garni (I c. AD), suspended between earth and sky, on the top of huge granite rocks. Garni area is also famous for Garni gorge with peaks soaring 2000-300 feet above the canyon, known for its "Stone Organ". You'll also go to ageless monastery of Geghard (IV c. AD), carved in stone, settled under the wing of a grand rock. Back to Yerevan you'll have leisure hours to lead your private investigation in the local shops, bars, restaurants or any other areas and make your own discoveries.
The 4th Day you'll visit the monastery complex of Khor Virap, located just at the slope of Ararat. Here the establisher of Christianity in Armenia Grigor the Enlightener had been in confinement for 13-14 years. Then the tour will bring you to attractive monastic complex of Noravank (XIII-XIV), standing gracefully on a flat surface of a hill. Among other monuments you'll see the main church of St. Karapet (1221-1227) and two-storeyed memorial church of Astvatsatsin (1339), the last work of famous Armenian architect Momik. At last you'll reach Sissian, and have overnight stop at most convenient Basen Hotel Complex.
The 5th Day you'll start from the hotel in the direction of the church of Sissavan (VII c AD) standing on a hill to the west of the town, which, despite its modest exterior and interior ornamentation, is very impressive and imposing construction of niche-buttressed type. Then you'll go to fairy Karahounj, the ancient astral observatory not far from Sissian, which is much older than more famous Stonehenge in England. Tatev (IX c) is a majestic monastery, a mighty defense complex, undergone considerable destructions from the earthquake of 1931. Having explored Tatev, you will return to Yerevan.
The 6th Day is given to visitting the Fortress Town of Erebuni, the ancient forerunner of Yerevan, located at Arin-Berd hilltop. At present Erebuni is partially restored and made into an open-air museum. In the pathway of the entrance to the fortress Erebuni Museum (1968), located in the pathway of the entrance to the fortress. The second place of great importance you'll visit this day is Matenadaran, one of the world's largest depositories of ancient manuscripts (more, than 17,000 documents) and the Institute for manuscript study. Here the tour of this day will end, and you'll have some leisure hours for wandering and shopping.
The 7th Day you'll be taken to a breathtaking excursion to Sanahin monastery (X c.), which you'll reach over Sanahin Bridge (1195) of supreme artistic merit across Debed River. Then you'll continue your tour to Haghpat monastery (Xc) rising sharply against a background of steep forested slopes. Exploring this tremendous work of architecture you'll start for Odzoun basilica (VI c.), famous for its large memorial monuments of V-VII centuries, representing some degree of approximation to the antique triumphal arch. And at last you'll your trip, reaching Dilijan, "a small Armenian paradise", and guesting in Adamyan Family Guesthouse.
The 8th Day you'll visit Goshavank (XII-XIII), monastery complex situated in dense oak wood, in the gorge of a small but turbulent river, in the place of an older monastery, Ghetik, destroyed by an earthquake. Then you'll see Haghartsin (X-XIII), an architectural ensemble the building of which took about 300 years. Here you can see numerous memorial khachkars, among which unique and highly artistic ones can be found. From here you'll start for lake Sevan, one of the most idyllic beauty spots. You'll visit its peninsula, with two churches on its top, providing a panoramic view. The exciting story, told by the guide will take you to the reigning times of the king Ashot Erkat (Ashot the Iron X c.). and by the end of the day you'll return to Yerevan.
The 9th Day will be a full leisure day, when you'll have a wonderful chance to wander about the city, to do shopping. In the evening you'll participate in the farewell supper full of surprises.
The 10th Day: Departure.
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