The first day of the hiking tour without backpacks starts with a visit to two sites representing two different historical periods of Armenia - pagan and Christian, even though often it is very hard to distinguish where one ends and the other begins.
First stop is the Geghard monastery. For many centuries, the monastery of Geghard housed the part of the spear that pierced the body of Jesus Christ. An important Christian monastery in Armenia, Geghard was built on the site of a pre-Christian shrine that was venerated for its holy springs. One of these springs is located inside the monastery of Geghard today, and according to the local lore, the water of this spring is healing.
You'll then dive into the pre-Christian, pagan Armenia, represented by the temple and fortress of Garni. Unlike the monastery of Geghard, which harmoniously merges with the cliffs in a hidden gorge, the temple of Garni stands proudly on the edge of a cliff, surrounded by deep canyon. The temple of Garni is dedicated to the god of Sun - Mithra.
It's hard to resist the desire the descent to the picturesque canyon of Azat river. Here, you'll see another natural miracle - the Symphony of Stones.
Next stop on our hiking tour is the medieval monastery of Havuts Tar that seats on top of a hill in the heart of the natural state reserve on the opposite side of the canyon.
Overnight at a guest house in the village of Garni.
You'll have to get up early on the 2nd day of the hiking tour without backpacks to travel to the Gegham plateau on SUVs, from where the ascension to the summit of Mt. Azhdahak (3,597 m) will start. According to Armenian and Persian legends, there was a time when this mountain was a dragon. Mountain spirits were often called dragons. Don't miss the ancient petroglyphs (rock carvings) and vishapakars (dragon stones) on the way to the summit.
From Azhdahak, you'll descent to the crystal-clear Lake Akna, a natural mirror that reflects the surrounding mountains. Here, on the shore of the lake, you'll spend the night in tents.
Your belongings will be transferred to the lake on a SUV.
On the 3rd day of the tour around central Armenia, you'll visit another lake - Sevan. Surrounded by volcanic mountain ranges, this lake has an elevation of 1900 meters above sea level and is the second largest freshwater high-altitude lake in the world. Spend your day on one of the best shores of Lake Sevan. Those who prefer to spend their time in a more active manner can climb the nearby Artanish mountain to enjoy the magnificence of the lake from the peak.
Overnight at eco camp.
One day isn't enough for Lake Sevan, that's why you'll have free time to admire its beauty until noon of the fourth day of your hiking tour.
After the lunch, you will travel to the canyon of River Marmarik. Mountains covered with dense forests stretch along both sides of the canyon, creating an ideal environment for relaxation.
Hiking without backpacks through the canyon, you will reach the monastery of Tezharuyg, lost in the woods. This medieval monastery is different from those Armenian monasteries you'll see during your hike. According to Georgian inscriptions on its walls, the Tezharuyg monastery is a Chalcedonian monument.
The nature of this area of Armenia, Hankavan, is not only rich with forests, but also with healing hot springs that you'll visit by the end of the day.
Overnight at a guest house.
Get ready to hike the entire day. Following a picturesque mountain trail, you'll hike from Hankavan to Aparan. It's a beautiful and interesting path, although long and tiring. You'll reach the site of your overnight stay in the evening.
Overnight at a guest house in the majestic gorge of River Kasagh.
On the 6th day of the hiking tour without backpacks you'll reach the foothills of Mount Aragats. Many historic and prehistoric monuments survived here. You'll start the exploration of this area of Armenia by visiting a megalithic fortress on the slopes of Aragats. The mountain keeps many a secret and you'll uncover some of them along the journey.
Next stop is a mysterious cave with seven entrances. The craftsmanship of the builders of these caves amazes with all details well thought out. There's canals for water, doors, food and drinks repositories and many more.
But that's not all. You are yet to learn about the secrets of an abandoned village with ruins of a church where you are headed next.
A night spend in tents in this area may help you get another step closer to uncovering the mysterious secrets of Aragats.
On the 7th day you will hike to the fortress of Amberd, located at an elevation of 2300 meters above sea level on the slopes of the Mt. Aragats. On the way, we'll visit another megalithic fortress.
The medieval fortress of Amberd was built on the site of an ancient fortress city from Urartian period. Amberd provides some magnificent views of the surrounding landscapes.
After exploring the fortress of Amberd, you will then start the preparations for an overnight stay in tents at a camp not far from the fortress.
Hike from the fortress of Amberd to Lake Kari on the 8th day of your hiking tour around central Armenia. Following a picturesque trail, you'll gain another 1000 meters of elevation to reach the Lake Kari.
Formed by melting ice and snow, the lake's water is always very cold. It's a perfect place to explore cosmic rays and here on the shore of the lake one of the most important research centers of Armenia is located.
Overnight by the lake in tents.
On this day, you will conquer two summits of Aragats and will descend via the opposite side of the mountain. It should be noted that Mt. Aragats has 4 peaks, we'll climb the southern peak and the northern, the highest one (4090 meters).
We'll descenе via the other side of the mountain down to a waterfall. The SUVs will take a detour and will deliver your belongings to the camp by the waterfall.
Overnight in tents.
After a serene night by the waterfall, you'll descent to a village, from where you'll travel to the monastery of Hovhannavank on cars. The monastery seats on the edge of a cliff overlooking the gorge of River Kasagh. Hovhannavank was built in 6-13th centuries and was a major cultural and spiritual center of medieval Armenia. Scholars studied philosophy and music, copied manuscripts, some of which today are preserved at the Matenadaran museum.
If you wish, a short hike down into the Kasagh gorge can be organized for you.
This is the last stop of the hiking tour without backpacks around central Armenia. From Hovhannavank, you'll return to Yerevan.
Overnight at a hotel.
Free day in Yerevan. There are many sites you can visit in Armenia's capital. We recommend visiting the museum of Matenadaran. Or you can check out other tours and hikes that we offer.
We'll arrange your transfer to Zvartnots international airport at any time suitable for you.
|Number of people||Budget||Business||Premium|
|1||1290 $||1620 $||-|
|Number of people||Budget||Business||Premium|
|5 - 6||1150 $||-||-|
|4 - 5||1290 $||1620 $||-|
|3 - 4||1450 $||1890 $||-|
|2 - 3||1550 $||2340 $||-|
|1 - 2||2160 $||3240 $||-|
The cost of a trip to Armenia with the movement of off-road vehicles includes:
Price hike on Armenia mobility off-road does not include:
Your hiking tour passes through the three central regions of Armenia - Kotayk, Gegharkunik and Aragatsotn. Following ancient trails, you'll reach the summit of Mt. Aragats, the highest peak of Armenia, hike through and climb mountains of the mystical Gegham range, enjoy some breathtaking views of Lake Sevan, the largest lake of South Caucasus, surrounded by volcanic peaks.
11-day Hiking Tour around Central Armenia (without backpacks)
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