Walking Through the Mountains

10 days / 9 nights

1

Day 1: Arrival in Yerevan – Transfer to the hotel – Yerevan (-/-/-)

Arrival at the Yerevan airport. Meeting with guide and driver.
Transfer to the hotel. Accommodation. Free time.
Overnight in the hotel in Yerevan.

2

Day 2: Yerevan – Matenadaran - City Tour - Tsitsernakaberd (B/L/D)

Yerevan. Breakfast in the hotel.
The excursion starts with a visit to Matenadaran – the rarest manuscript museum. Here about 18,000 manuscripts are kept, which are included in UNESCO World Heritage list.

Start overall city tour in Yerevan. Yerevan is the capital and largest city of Armenia, and one of the world’s oldest continuously inhabited cities. Yerevan is older than Rome for 29 years. Situated on the left-bank (along the river Araks) part of the Ararat valley Yerevan offers breathtaking views of holy mountain Ararat. The history of Yerevan dates back to the 8th century BC. In 2018 Yerevan celebrated its 2800th anniversary.

It is then followed by the visit to the Genocide Memorial and Museum (Tsitsernakaberd). The Armenian Genocide Museum & Institute (AGMI), located on the hills of the Tsitsernakaberd Park, makes up part of the Armenian Genocide Victims’ Memorial Complex. This sacred site embraces and reflects the memories and values for Armenians worldwide. The Memorial and the Museum function as a source of understanding and acknowledgement of this monumental tragedy in the history of Armenia.

Welcome dinner in typical Armenian restaurant with Armenian folk music and dance.

Overnight in Yerevan.

3

Day 3: Yerevan – Sevan – Dilijan – Parz Lake – Gosh Lake - Goshavank - Sevan (B/L/D)

Yerevan. Breakfast in the hotel.

Start short city tour on foot in Dilijan old town. Dilijan is a resort town with mild climate and fresh air. It is famous for its amazing surroundings, called the “Armenian Switzerland” by the locals, due to the densely forested valleys and mountains with alpine meadows around. It is an excellent centre for walking.

Begin this leg of your hiking from Parz lake to Gosh village. The trail goes through the forests and alpine fields.
Lake Parz is a small lake located in the Dilijan National Park east of Dilijan in Armenia. The lake was formed by natural climatic changes. “Parz” in Armenian means clear. Trees growing along the coastline are reflected on the water surface and create an amazing “painting” effect.

In 2017 the Trans Caucasian Trail was created to connect Parz Lake with the town of Dilijan and in the opposite direction with Gosh Village and Gosh Lake. The trail was created through the building of new trail segments to connect existing trails or dirt roads together.

Lake Gosh is located in the heart of the Dilijan Reserve. The name of the pond comes from the village named after the outstanding Armenian writer and public figure Mkhitar Gosh, who lived in the 12th-13th centuries. Dense forests stretches around the lake. This place is loved both by tourists and by the residents of Armenia due to the rich nature and picturesque views.

At the end of hike you will reach to the impressive monastic complex of Goshavank (12-13th century) which has remained in relatively good condition and also houses one of the world’s finest examples of a khachkar. Goshavank was erected in the place of an older monastery once known as Nor Getik, which had been destroyed by an earthquake in 1188. Mkhitar Gosh, a statesman, scientist and author of numerous fables and parables as well as the first criminal code, took part in the rebuilding of the monastery. The impressive monastery which has remained in relatively good condition also houses one of the world’s finest examples of a khachkar.

Trekking route: Parz lake – Gosh village – Gosh lake
Trekking distance: 12 km
Elevation: Parz lake 1330 m – Gosh village 1190 m – Gosh lake 1410 m
Elevation gain: ↑531m ↓665m
Drive back to Sevan for overnight stay.

4

Day 4: Sevan - Tsaghkashen – Lake Akna (B/L/D)

Sevan. Breakfast in the hotel.
The climb to Geghama Mountains starts from the Village Tsaghkashen of Gegharkunik region. After crossing some kilometers, participants reach Lake Akna, where the first camp for overnight stay will be installed. Camp and other items will be transported by off-road vehicles.

Trekking route: Tsaghkashen – Lake Akna
Trekking distance: 16km
Elevation gain: ↓890m

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Day 5: Lake Akna – Mount Azhdahak - Paytaasar (B/L/D)

Breakfast in a camp.

Crossing about 8 km length route from the Lake Akna, participants will overcome the highest pick of Geghama Mountains: Mount Azhdahak. Mt. Azhdahak has a beautiful crater, where the Lake Azhdahak of 8m depth is situated. The Lake is distinguished by astonishing purity of its water. From Azhdahak the route is continued to a nearby pond, where participants will spend an overnight stay. (As per wish of participants, it is possible to reach the pick of Mount Tar by 30 minutes long hike from Azhdahak and see Crater Lake of the Mount as well).
Overnight in a camp.

Trekking route: Lake Akna – Mt Azhdahak – Paytasar
Trekking distance: 16km
Elevation gain: ↑882m ↓755m

6

Day 6: Paytasar – Geghama Petroglyphs – Garni (B/L/D)

Breakfast in a camp.

Today we will go back in history by exploring the petroglyphs from 3rd – 2nd millennium BC. After 5 km of trekking we will get to the ancient petroglyphs. Over 12.000 petroglyphs have been discovered in the vicinity of the Geghama Mountain Range. Almost all aspects of our human life are reflected in petroglyphs. Most depict man in the act of hunting, fighting, dancing, and even cultivating land. Some also show the worship of fertility or maternity figures, ancestors, heroes, spirits, and time. Different animals, especially deer, leopards, and bezoar goats are pictured on these rocks. Continue to Garni where you will have overnight stay in a beautiful hotel.

Trekking route: Paytasar – Geghama Petroglyphs
Trekking distance: 15km
Elevation gain: ↓1068m

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Day 7: Garni – Geghard – Voskevaz Winery – Amberd - Kari Lake (B/L/D)

Garni. Breakfast in the hotel.
Visit to open-air museum of Garni pagan temple. It is the only surviving monument of the Hellenistic period in Armenia. The temple is dedicated to the God of the sun Mithra and was built in the 2nd half of the 1st c AD during the reign of king Tiridates I. The temple was completely destroyed during the earthquake of 1679. It was restored in the 1970s, using the surviving fragments and carving the missing ones renewed. The territory of the fortress that was used as a summer residence of Armenian royalty included the palace, the royal bath – house, the garrison barracks and other structures that did not survive. Garni pagan temple has unique design and is the only type of temple across the Caucasus and the former Soviet Union.

Garni temple is situated on a high hill (height above sea level is 1413 m) and behind the hill you can find an unforgettable view of the canyon of the Azat river. So you are going to hike along the canyon to see cliff walls of well-preserved basalt columns. These wonderful basalt rocks seem to be artificial – so much beautiful they are. For their beauty rocks are called «Symphony of the stones».

Geghard is one of the most famous medieval monasteries in Armenia. The complex of medieval buildings is set into a landscape of great natural beauty, surrounded by towering cliffs at the entrance to the Azat river valley. According to the legend, the monastery housed the spear which had wounded Christ on the Cross and from which comes its present name, Geghardavank (the Monastery of the Spear). Allegedly it was brought there by the Apostle Thaddeus, first recorded in a document of 1250. The church with its surrounding structures is included in the UNESCO World Cultural heritage List.

Voskevaz Winery is one of the oldest enterprises of Armenia for the production of wine. The winery was opened in 1932 in Voskevaz during the Soviet period, to process the grapes of the fertile vineyards in Aragatsotn, at the foothills of Mount Aragats.

On your way to Lake Kari you will visit the fortress Amberd (8th c). Amberd is one of the rare witnesses of Armenian military architecture of the Middle Ages. During the walk you can enjoy the scenery of colorful alpine meadows and mountain.

Drive to Kari lake. Make a tent.

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Day 8: Kari lake - Southern Peak of Aragats Mountain – Gegharot Waterfall (B/L/D)

Breakfast in a camp.

Early in the morning get ready for hiking to the southern summit of the highest mountain of Armenia and South Caucasus. Mount Aragats with its unique nature has sub – alpine and alpine zones, as well as four peaks and one of the biggest craters in the world, created by a volcano eruption in the distant past. The highest northern peak is 4090 m. For your Armenian trekking trip we will climb the southern one (3887 m). Afterwards, we continue trekking to the Gegharot waterfall, and the route goes through the crater. Next to the waterfall we will have our campsite.

Upon participants’ wish and depending on weather conditions, it may be possible to climb up to Western Peak as well.

Trekking route: Kari Lake – Mt Aragats – Gegharot Waterfall
Trekking distance: 12km
Elevation gain: ↑691m ↓1105m

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Day 9: Gegharot – Aragats village - Yerevan (B/L/D)

Breakfast in a camp.
Start the final day of trekking from Gegharot waterfall which is 15 meters high and has two cascades. The waterfall is not a large one but it is marvelous during the thaw. Trekking down towards Aragats village, you will then drive to Yerevan. Overnight in the hotel.

Trekkiing route: Gegharot waterfall – Aragats village
Trekking distance: 11.5km
Elevation gain: ↑96m ↓883m

10

Day 10: Departure (B/-/-)

Yerevan. Breakfast in the hotel (depending on the time of departure). Transfer to the Yerevan Airport. Departure.

8 pax10 pax12 pax
DBL / TWN1386 EUR1355 EUR1228 EUR
SGL1499 EUR1467 EUR1341 EUR

Hotels:
Yerevan: Silk Road 3*
Sevan: Noy Land Resort
Garni: HinYard

Price includes:
• Transfers;
• Comfortable transportation with air conditioning system;
• Gear transportation by 4×4 vehicles;
• Accommodation in DBL\TWIN rooms in the hotels on BB basis;
• 4 -day accommodation in a tent;
• Camping equipment (tent, caremat, sleeping bag);
• Professional English-speaking trekking guide’s service;
• Professional English- speaking cultural guides service;
• Meals – full board;
• Welcome dinner with folk show;
• Wine tasting in Voskevaz winery (Day 7);
• Kitchen in the mountains;
• Cook in the mountains;
• Entrance fees as per program;
• Water 0,5l p/p for excursion days.

Price excludes:
• Air ticket;
• Medical insurance;
• Travel insurance;
• Personal expenses.

Please note:
• Some changes may appear in the program according to arrival/departure time and weather conditions.

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