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Ashtarak activities

$19 Day Trips & Excursions

Saghmosavank, Alphabet Monument, and Amberd Tour from Yerevan

Begin your tour with pickup from your central hotel in Yerevan or at a central meeting point at 9 am. Then, travel out of the city by comfortable, air-conditioned vehicle, heading into the western Armenia. Make your first stop at the Saghmosavank Monastery, situated on the edge of the Kasakh River canyon with Mt. Aragat rising in the distance. Built in the 13th century by Vachutian dukes and famous for its frescoes, the monastery’s main church is adjacent to the Scriptorium, where many manuscripts have been produced through the centuries. Your next stop is the Armenian Alphabet monument in the village of Artashavan. Constructed in 2005 to honor the 1,600th anniversary of the creation of the Armenian alphabet, this unique sculpture was designed by famous Armenian architect, Jim Torosyan. Next up, visit Amberd, a 7th-century fortress that reflects the main features of medieval fortress design. Built on a naturally well-defended cape on the slopes of Mt. Aragat, Amberd served as an important military stronghold for many years. Near the fort is Karmravor Church, built in 1026 by the Duke Vahram Pahlavuni. This exquisite church is regarded as the jewel of Ashtarak and was also constructed in the 7th century. Still almost completely intact, the church has a crucifix-shaped ground plan inside and out, topped by a Byzantine-style red-tile roof. Enjoy a barbecue picnic (additional cost) and make your last stop at Oshakan village, considered a holy place since the 5th century for being the 440 AD burial place of Mesrop Mashtots, the creator of Armenia’s alphabet. A small chapel was built over his tomb by the Duke Vahan Amatuni, and replaced in the 19th century by the Church of St. Mesrop Mashtots. After visiting Oshakan, return to Yerevan where your tour finishes at the original central meeting point.

$21 Food, Wine & Nightlife

Day Tour with Alphabet Monument, Lake Kari and Amberd Fortress from Yerevan

This tour starts at 09.00am from the local operators office in Central Yerevan. You will be transported to the Western part of Armenia where the first stop is Armenian alphabet monument located in the village of Artashavan. It was erected in 2005 to the 1600 anniversary of creation of the Armenian alphabet by the design of the famous Armenian architect Jim Torosyan. The next stop is slopes of Mount Aragats, the highest peak of the Republic of Armenia (4095 m). This four-peaked giant is the most favorite mountain of climbers. On the way to the southern peak the best stop is at Kari Lich (Stone Lake), which is at the height of 3250m. On the top one opens the most attractive scene: the silhouette of green valleys from one side, the eternal snow and silver lakes from other sides and the Biblical Mount Ararat far in the fog of Ararat Valley. Next up visit Amberd fortress. The principal architectural features of medieval fortress-building have found their reflection in this fortress. Having been built on a naturally well-defended cape, Amberd has for long time served as an important military fort. Next to this secular edifice there is a church built in 1026 by the duke Vahram Pahlavuni. This exquisite church is considered to be the jewel of Ashtarak. It was built in the 7th century and has come to our days almost intact. It has a cross-shaped ground plan from inside and outside. Next stop is Armenian village garden, where besides participation in traditional holiday cooking one can have a lunch choosing the meal between 4 offered options in the vehicle before arrival to the restaurant and pay on the spot. You will then be returned to the local operators office in Central Yerevan.

$2350 Food, Wine & Nightlife

9 Day Gastronomic and Cultural Tour of Armenia

Day 1:Arrive at Zvartnots Airport, transfer to the hotel. Overnight in Yerevan.Day 2: (B,L,D)Breakfast at the hotel, then visit the History museum and Ararat brandy factory. You will be acquainted with brandy and its production phases before enjoying the delicious taste and flavors of different Ararat brandy. You will then participate in the food master class and enjoy the delicious local food prepared by famous Armenian Chef.Day 3: (B,L,D)Breakfast at the hotel before visiting Etchmiadzin Cathedral, the first official Christian church in the world, built in 301 AD. Then visit Zvartnots temple and Ashtarak Karmravor Church that was built in the 7th Century in Ashtarak. Have lunch in Ashtarak and then attend a tasting session of different types of dried fruits and natural honey. Dinner in Yerevan.Day 4: (B, L, D)Breakfast at the hotel. Visit Garni temple which is the unique survived example of Armenian heathen culture. Then head to the beautiful Christian Monastery of Geghard; carved out of solid rock between the 11th and 13th centuries. Lunch in Geghard. Taste the freshly made Armenian lavash bread by the locals at the restaurant. Bus transfer to Yerevan and dinner in Yerevan.Day 5: (B, L, D)Breakfast at the hotel. Taste the best wine assortments in Areni village winery, then visit Noravank which is a 13th century Armenian monastery and has a unique constructive and sculptural work. After having lunch in Noravank transfer to Goris. Dinner in Goris and overnight.Day 6: (B, L, D)Breakfast at the hotel in Goris before visiting Tatev Monastery that used to be the wealthiest medieval monastery in Armenia. Take the world’s largest cable-way between Halidzor and Tatev Monasteries that passes through a deep gorge of the River Vorotan. There will be a surprise waiting for in Halidzor; lunch at local village house. Back to Goris. Dinner in Goris and overnight.Day 7: (B, L, D)Breakfast at the hotel in Goris before going to Yeghegnadzor for lunch. Enjoy the most delicious Karmrakhayt fish (high mountain fresh water lake fish) in a local restaurant. Drive to Noratus and the forest of khachkars (cross-stone) open-air museum. Pass the fascinating mountains of Lake Sevan, which is one of the world's greatest high altitude fresh-water lakes. Go to Dilijan, famous for its fresh air and mild climate. Enjoy the tasty food made by locals at a restaurant in Dilijan. Overnight in Dilijan.Day 8: (B, L, D)Breakfast at the hotel in Dilijan. Visiting Haghartsin Monastery situated in the woodlands of Tavush. Back to Yerevan, free time before a special farewell dinner at the local restaurant in Yerevan.Day 9: (B)Breakfast at the hotel before transfer to Zvartnos Airport.

Ashtarak in detail