Mount Ararat Expedition
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Ascend Mount Ararat (5137m), considered to be the resting place of Noah's Ark
Agri Dag, or Ararat as it is known in the west, is at 5137m. Tucked away near the borders of Iran and Armenia, Turkey's highest mountain is considered to be the spot where Noah's Ark came to rest after the Great Flood. Yet to be proved, this spectacular, permanently glacier-capped mountain is a great one week challenge and for the seasoned walker. Our fully supported trek with experienced licensed mountain guides will ensure your experience will be memorable and on fine weather we hope to have great views over towards Armenia, Georgia and the high Caucasus.
- Summit Mount Ararat - the highest mountain in Turkey
- Visits to magnificent examples of ancient Ottoman architecture and Armenian churches
- Experience local culture and nomadic groups
Day 1 Join Van and drive to Dogubayazit
Meet at Van Airport and transfer to Dogubayazit, via Tendurek Volcano (approx 3 hours drive). In the afternoon there is a possibility to visit Ishak Pacha palace built in the 18th Century, and located at the foot of Mount Ararat. Overnight hotel in Dogubayazit.
Day 2 Drive to Ararat and commence climb to Eli Village - Camp I (3200m)
This morning we will load the luggage and camping essentials on the truck and drive to Eli Village at 2500m. From here we will commence trekking up to our first campsite at 3200m. Our camping and trek luggage will be carried by mules or horses. Our trek support crew will establish the camp, and our cook will arrange the evening meal. Approx Walking time: 4 hrs; Ascent: 700m
Day 3 Acclimatisation day walks
Today is an acclimatization day, with some easy walks up to 4200m. We will spend the night back at the same campsite at 3200m. We can also use this day as an extra climbing day in case of bad weather. Approx walking time: 5/6 hrs; Ascent/Descent: 1000m
Day 4 Trek to Camp II (4200m)
This morning, we will ascend to the second campsite at height of 4200m. After reaching the campsite, we will set up our tents and have a little rest. In the afternoon, we can go for an acclimatization walk. Approx walking time: 4 hrs; Ascent: 1000m
Day 5 Climb Mount Ararat Summit (5137m). Descend to Camp I (3200 m).
We will commence our summit attempt very early in the morning in order to reach the top in time for the sunrise. The ascent will be difficult because of the steep terrain. Depending on the season, we will have to walk with crampons for safety reasons. From the summit, depending on the weather conditions, you can see other mountains like Little Ararat, Mount Suphan and the Armenian lands. We will descend back to the first campsite (3200m) for overnight. Approx walking time: 9/10 hrs; Ascent: 937m; Descent: 1937m
Day 6 Descend to Eli Village. Transfer to Van.
In the morning, we will descend to the village of Eli. Along the way we will meet several nomadic groups. We will be transferred to Van via Dogubayazit. Overnight hotel in Van. Approx walking time: 3 hrs; Descent: 700m
Day 7 Explore Van and surrounds
Today we will drive to Gevas town and take a boat to visit Akdamar Island, which is home to a 10th century Armenian Church, known as the Cathedral Church of the Holy Cross (915-921), and was the seat of Armenian Catholics from 1116 to 1895. In the afternoon, we will visit Van Castle, which was constructed in 9 BC at 80m height from the lake by the Urartian king Sardur the First. One of the most remarkable structures in the area is the rock tomb of Argisti the First, with a long inscription relating the events of his reign. Overnight hotel in Van.
Day 8 In Van, trip concludes
After breakfast, transfer to airport for onward flights home.
- 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches and 7 dinners
- Tourist class hotels on twin share basis (3 nights)
- All internal transportation by private vehicle
- English speaking local guide and camp crew
- Licensed mountain guide for Mt Ararat climb
- Mt Ararat permit fees
- Group camping equipment for trek including 2 person tents and sleeping mat (sleeping bag, crampons, ice axe, harness not included)
- Porterage by mules and horses whilst trekking
- Emergency medical kit
- Pre-departure Information Guide, with all you need to know for your trek
- 8 day trip
- 5 day trek
- 3 nights hotel
- 4 nights camping
Trip Main Activities
Group Size Min
Group Size Max
Specialist gear required include walking boots, a day pack (35L minimum), crampons, ice axe and climbing harness. A comprehensive gear list is provided in the pre-departure information provided on booking.
What You Carry
In your daypack you will need to carry extra warm clothing (depending on the altitude, location and weather), a rainjacket, water bottle, camera gear, valuables and personal items such as sunscreen, lip-eze etc. Mules or horses carry all group gear and your trek pack.