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Things to do in

Armenia

Our most recommended things to do in Armenia

From Yerevan: Khorvirap, Noravank, & Areni Winery Day Trip

1. From Yerevan: Khorvirap, Noravank, & Areni Winery Day Trip

Khor Virap Monastery is located about an hour’s drive away from the capital Yerevan, and offers an amazing view of Armenia’s defining symbol – the majestic Ararat. Khor Virap translates as deep dungeon, and it was built on the place of the former royal prison, located on the historical site of Artashat. The Monastery is also one of the most sacred spots for Armenians around the world. This tour will also take you to the Areni Cave (Bird’s Cave). In 2008, archeologists discovered several of the world’s oldest artifacts, including a leather shoe and a winery here. The site, overlooking Arpa River near the town of Areni, is claimed to date back to the Early Bronze Age. It contains evidence of elaborate burial rituals and agricultural practices. Another place that can’t be missed is Noravank. It is one of the gems of medieval Armenian architecture, nestled high among the stunning brick-red cliffs at the end of the Gnishik Canyon. Afterwards, you will be given the chance to taste and even purchase Armenia’s renowned Areni wine, made from the oldest grape variety in the whole world. The wine is available in several wineries in the town of Areni itself. You will also taste the most famous dishes of traditional Armenian cuisine.

From Yerevan: Lake Sevan, Dilijan, Lake Parz, and Lunch

2. From Yerevan: Lake Sevan, Dilijan, Lake Parz, and Lunch

Whilst staying in Armenia, you simply cannot miss the opportunity to visit one of the country’s most renowned landmarks – the beautiful Lake Sevan. Merely an hour’s drive from the capital city of Yerevan, Sevan is situated at a height of 1900m above sea level and surrounded by a vast chain of mountains. You will then head to the North of Armenia, where you will be surrounded by incredible nature. Visit the 'Armenian Switzerland' – the city of Dilijan. The first stop in Dilijan .After that, you will make a stop at the monastery of Haghartsin, which dates back to the 10th century. The name means 'the play of the eagle'. The scenery is like a work of art, with both the monastery and nature surrounding it providing breathtaking views. It is one of those spots in Armenia that feels just like a movie set. The refectory of Haghartsin is one the biggest examples of Armenian Church architecture. It was an absolute innovation at the time it was constructed. If you are curious as to why then there's nothing better than seeing it for yourself.

From Tbilisi: Day Trip to Armenia Including Homemade Lunch

3. From Tbilisi: Day Trip to Armenia Including Homemade Lunch

Start your tour at the Akhtala Monastery, a church from the 12th century which contains beautiful frescoes and is surrounded by copper smelting caves as well as a copper smelting factory. The second destination of the tour is the Haghpat Monastery, located in Haghpat Village and is a UNESCO-listed site. It is one of the most beautiful medieval masterpieces in Armenia. Then you can have lunch and try some traditional Armenian food. Following lunch, you'll make 3 stops on your way to visit the second UNESCO Heritage Site, Sanahin.  The first will be a 13th-century bridge, the second for a Debed canyon with astonishing views, and the third for the Mikoyan Brothers' museum, where an original aircraft (MiG 21) will surprise you. Finally, travel back through the border to Tbilisi.

From Yerevan: Garni Temple & Geghard Tour with Lavash Baking

4. From Yerevan: Garni Temple & Geghard Tour with Lavash Baking

The tour starts from the capital city of Armenia, Yerevan before traveling to the first stop of the day, Garni Temple. The temple, which was built in 77 AD, is the only remaining heathen temple of the post-Soviet era. The temple gracefully stands on a high plateau overlooking the Azat river gorge and has stunning views all around. At the temple, admire the on-site Greek-Roman bath house that holds a mosaic made from 30,000 pieces of natural stones, as well as the ruins of the royal palace, will dates back to the 3rd century AD. Next, visit the Geghard Monastery complex which symbolizes the lance with which the Roman centurion pierced Jesus after crucifixion. The lance was brought to Armenia and kept in the Geghard Monastery for many centuries, and the site is on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Not far from the temple of Garni, visit a cosy local restaurant with an amazing view of the temple and surrounding landscape. Here, relax after the tour and take part in a masterclass of baking and tasting fresh Lavash, a traditional Armenian flatbread. After having a lunch, your last stop before returning to Yerevan will be the gorge of "Symphony of stones." These rocks start from the beginning of the canyon and up to the highest point. The monument consists of huge paradoxically symmetric hexagon and pentagon basalt columns of nearly 100 meters high. Learn how the gorge got its name from its amazing resemblance to the church organ. Admire the many rocks in the gorge of the Azat River, which is included in the UNESCO heritage list.

From Yerevan: Group Tour to Tatev Cable Car and Areni Winery

5. From Yerevan: Group Tour to Tatev Cable Car and Areni Winery

Escape the busy city of Yerevan and travel into Southern Armenia towards the town of Areni, known for its spectacular history in winemaking and bearing the name of one of the oldest grape varieties in the world. Your first destination will be one of the region’s best vineyards to enjoy a tour of the winery and learn about the process of making wine. Discover the variety of grapes that are used here and taste some of the oldest wines of Armenia to get a real flavor of the region. Next, enjoy stunning scenic views on the drive towards the next destination, the ‘Wings of Tatev’. The ‘Wings of Tatev’ is the longest cable car in the world, measuring 6 km. Ride the cable car and admire the breathtaking scenery along the way, including the Harsnadzor Watchtower and Devil’s Bridge. Travel to the 9th Century Tatev monastery, which once was the educational and spiritual center of Armenia. Built on a high plateau in the Vorotan river gorge, the monastery is surrounded by breathtaking mountains and dense forests. Also visit the magnificent waterfall of Shaki.

From Tbilisi: Armenia Day Tour with Lunch

6. From Tbilisi: Armenia Day Tour with Lunch

Armenia, with its distinctive culture, its beautiful rocky mountains and ancient history is a must-see when traveling in the Caucasus region. Discover the beauty of Northern Armenia on this day trip from Tbilisi, with your tour starting at 9:00AM, after which you will head for the border. From here the landscape will begin to change, as you drive through the narrow gorges of the Debed River in between the high rocky mountains. The time seems to stand still in this part of the country, with its typical Soviet cars and huge copper factories built in the middle of the mountains, the scenery is full of bizarre beauty. The tour includes several main sightseeing objects of Northern Armenia, such as the historic Lori region, the fortified monastery of Akhtala, a unique example of wonderfully preserved frescoes from the 11th century and the two UNESCO protected monasteries of Sanahin and Haghpat. The history of the two monasteries in Alaverdi is connected by a legend of father and son and you can see many similarities, but also differences in their architecture. Both places are known for their beautiful architecture and the unique hachkars, as well as the stone crosses, a signature of Armenian art. Before heading back to Tbilisi you can taste authentic Armenian food in a traditional restaurant by the river.

From Tbilisi: Small Group Tour to Armenia with Lunch

7. From Tbilisi: Small Group Tour to Armenia with Lunch

Visit two of Armenia’s ancient monasteries and the town of Alaverdi on this small group tour from Tbilisi. Cross over the border with your experienced guide who will take you through the highlights of Northern Armenia in just 1 day.   Depart at 9:00 AM sharp for a 1.5-hour trip across the Georgian-Armenian boarder. Almost immediately you’ll start to notice changes in the landscape—the fields will become rocky mountains and the scenery takes on a certain apocalyptic touch, due to the many abandoned Soviet mines and factories. Your first stop is the fortified monastery of Akhtala, where you can marvel at the beautifully preserved frescoes and learn about the thrilling history of this Georgian-Armenian creation.   Then, you’ll reach the UNESCO-listed monastery complex of Haghpat, where you’ll learn about the Armenian stone crosses and the mystical poet Sayat-Nova. The next stop is a small authentic restaurant by the river, where you can try authentic Armenian cuisine. Travel another 30 minutes to the center of the town of Alaverdi, famous for being the hometown of MIG fighter jet engineer Mikoyan, and the 10th century monastery of Sanahin. Arrive back in Tbilisi by around 6:00 PM after a full and fascinating day.

Private Tour: Khor Virap, Noravank, Areni Cave, & Winery

8. Private Tour: Khor Virap, Noravank, Areni Cave, & Winery

Although there are various historical landmarks in Armenia, the oldest and most well-known is the Biblical Mount Ararat. This tour promises spectacular views from the closest spot possible. The Khor Virap Monastery is located about an hour’s drive away from the capital Yerevan, and offers amazing views of Armenia’s defining symbol – the majestic Ararat. The site is also one of the most sacred spots for Armenians around the world. Another place that cannot be missed during your time in Armenia is Noravank. It is one of the gems of medieval Armenian architecture, nestled high among the stunning brick-red cliffs at the end of the Gnishik Canyon. Here you will see the one and only depiction of God the Father in Armenia, which is just as astonishing as the face of Jesus Christ that appeared on the dome of the Church’s narthex. This tour will also take you to the Bird’s Cave. In 2008, archaeologists discovered several of the world’s oldest artifacts here, including a leather shoe and a winery. The site, overlooking the Arpa River near the town of Areni, is claimed to date back to the Early Bronze Age (around 5,000-6,000 years ago). It also contains evidence of elaborate burial rituals and agricultural practices. Finally, you will be given the chance to taste and even purchase Armenia’s renowned Areni wine. Made from the oldest grape variety in the whole world, the wine is available in several wineries in the actual town of Areni itself, which you will make a stop at before finishing the trip.

Yerevan: Private Khor Virap, Garni, & Gehgard Monastery Tour

9. Yerevan: Private Khor Virap, Garni, & Gehgard Monastery Tour

Khor Virap monastery is located about an hour’s drive away from the capital Yerevan, and offers an amazing view of Armenia’s defining symbol: the majestic Ararat. “Khor Virap” translates as “deep dungeon”, and was built on the place of the former royal prison, located on the historical site of Artashat. It was this very prison in which they detained Gregory the Illuminator, the first Armenian Catholicos, for an entire 13 years. Your fantastic tour will introduce you to the exotic Pagan history of Armenia, before later introducing you to the development and spread of Christianity in the country. Your first stop will be Garni Temple (77 A.D.), which is the only standing heathen temple in the whole post-Soviet area. The temple is home to the Roman bath house with its mysterious mosaic which is made out of 30,000 pieces of natural stones, as well as the ruins of the royal palace which date back to the 3rd century A.D. The monastic complex of Geghard is another historical site included in this tour. Translated to “Monastery of the Holy Lance”, it refers to the lance with which Longinus pierced Jesus as he was still hanging on the cross. The complex is a representation of 13th-century Armenia, which is considered to be the golden age of the country’s architecture. The most astonishing part however is the virtue of the architect, who cut the church right into the solid rock whilst also considering all the rules of Armenian architecture. On your way to the temple, there will be another short stop at the Charents Arch where you will be given the chance to enjoy one of the best moments of your trip to Armenia: a picturesque view of the Biblical Mount Ararat.

Day trip to Khor Virap, Areni Winery and Noravank Monastery

10. Day trip to Khor Virap, Areni Winery and Noravank Monastery

The tour will start at 09:30 AM with a pick-up point from your hotel. The day’s itinerary includes visits to Khor Virap Monastery, Areni Winery and Noravank Monastery situated deep in the Noravank Canyon. Once you get to Khor Virap, you will stop to admire and take photos of the spectacular view of Mount Ararat, the national symbol of Armenia. You will then continue to the winery in the village of the Areni, where you can try delicious Armenian wine and take a few bottles with you. Due to its charming medieval architecture and magnificent landscape, the Noravank Complex is a must see when in Armenia.  

Cities in Armenia

Other Sightseeing Options in Armenia

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What people are saying about Armenia

Overall rating

4.8 / 5

based on 483 reviews

Amazing experience! The locations covered during this trip and the info provided by Beka (our guide) enriched our knowledge and perspective. He is definitely one of the best guides I had in Georgia. The driver was also very experienced on the Armenian roads. The lunch experience with a local Armenian family was one of the highlights with their hospitality, delish food and warm smile. This tour was simply beautiful, culturally rich and eye opening. I highly recommend it!

The transfer was hassle free and on-time. Our driver, Ara, was really cool all through out our long-drive. It was good to travel at 6AM as you can witness the sunrise on the way in Lake Sevan. Border checking was smooth and pretty quick, just prepare your Armenian visa alongside with you, it only takes 5mins or less. Highly recommended! :)

Bake was an amazing tour guide and very accommodating. He was very passionate about the tour and full of knowledge. The Armenian lunch was also very tasty and I felt like I had a great day and left me wanting to explore more of Armenia. Definitely recommend!!

We had an engaging, entertaining and knowledgeable guide, Irakli, who never fail to make us laugh. The trip really showed how time stood still in this age. If you love history and beautiful mountainous scenery, then I’ll highly recommend this for you!

A very well organised trip with a safe driver and a knowledgeable and friendly guide. I would recommend this to anyone interested in Georgia's history and culture.