ARMENIA GASTRONOMY AND TASTING
APRIL - NOVEMBER
Armenian food is a fusion of scents and tastes from East and West, blending fresh vegetables, meats, fish and dairy with mountain herbs to create a unique cuisine. Armenia is also world renowned for its brandy and growing selection of wines. Winston Churchill was offered Armenian brandy by Stalin at the Yalta Conference, and was so impressed that he asked for several cases of it to be shipped to him each year. Churchill was definitely onto something. And we don’t forget that sitting down to a meal in Armenia is about so much more than eating. All aspects of the meal – the aromas, the tastes, and most importantly, the good company – are savored to the fullest extent. Meals are not rushed. They are a time to slow down, sit down, and enjoy quality time with family and friends.
Transfer and accommodation in hotel. Relax.
After breakfast, panoramic tour around the city of Yerevan. Yerevan is one of the oldest cities in the world. It is the political, economic, cultural and scientific centre, as well as the most important transport hub of the country. Visiting the museum of ancient manuscripts Matenadaran, which is considered as one of the most important repositories of ancient manuscripts, including those written in Arabic, ancient Persian, ancient Greek and other ancient languages. Visiting the distillery of the ARARAT Factory of Armenian Brandy in the afternoon. After the distillery there will also be the different years brandy tasting. Overnight at the hotel.
After breakfast, leaving the city of Yerevan to visit the ArmAs winery. “ArmAs” has enlivened the traditions of Armenian winemaking giving it a delicate flavor. Here you can taste the wines of ArmAs. After tasting we will see the Amberd fortress of the 11th century (2300 m high) with the tower, baths, walls and the church of Vahramashen. Overnight at the hotel.
After breakfast we are leaving for the region of Lori where there will be stops in the monastery complexes of Haghbat and Sanahin of the 10th-13th centuries (they are listed in a UNESCO World Heritage Site). We continue the excursion to Dilijan which is surrounded by the National Park created in 1958. Dilijan has lakes, numerous hiking trails and mountain roads with wild vegetation, the roads lead to some of the marvelous monuments of Armenia: churches, monasteries and fortresses of the prehistoric era built in the core of splendid nature. The climate of Dilijan mountains is very healthy, the air is fresh. The climate and the thermal waters, rich with carbonic acid and sodium hydrocarbonate, are very helpful for treatment of many diseases. Overnight at the hotel.
After breakfast we are leaving for Ijevan, administrative centre of Tavush region. The city of Ijevan is proud of its botanical garden which includes a large collection of unique plants. Ijevan is also called the north-eastern gate of the republic. In the city there is the Ijevan wine house which has been functioning since 1951. Nowadays it also has its own brandy production. During the visit to the Ijevan wine and brandy distillery you can observe procedure of the wine producing, taste wine and even make a purchase in its shop. The next stop will be on the peninsula of Sevan with its monastery which was built in the 9th century. In the evening we will stop in the Tsapatagh village. During the dinner at the hotel restaurant we can admire the sunset on Lake Sevan. Overnight at the hotel.
After breakfast, leaving the village of Tsapatagh and returning to the city of Yerevan. On our way we will stop at the local brewery “Kellers”, after which we will leave for the Kotayk region to reach Garni, an architectural complex of the 2nd century BC with the splendid “temple of the sun” of the 1st century BC and the ruins of the summer residence of Armenian Kings, overlooking an impressive gorge. Making our way to Geghard, a medieval monastery complex located in mountains. Surrounding panorama spread up the hill, is breathtaking, the highly impressive atmosphere, the best place for taking the most beautiful photographs. Overnight at the hotel.
After breakfast we will head to the Khor Virap monastery which has become historically famous due to efforts of St. Gregory the Enlightener. A beautiful view opens from here on the biblical Mount Ararat. After we are making our way to Noravank. The road to Noravank runs along spectacular gorge with the remarkable forms of rocky mountains. Noravank is one of the most splendid monuments of medieval Armenia. We will also visit the village of Areni which is located on the banks of river Arpa. It is assumed that the story of Areni begins with the events of Noah and his sons, who have planted the first vines. Areni village is famous for its sort of vine of the same name and its various wines that have also gained international recognition, especially “Areni Maran” and “Areni Gedeon”. Visiting one of the Areni wineries and tasting wine. Here in Areni, in contrast to Artashat, we will taste the grappa from aged grapes in oak barrels. Overnight at the hotel.
Leading to the Armavir region. Visiting the ruins of the 7th century Zvartnots Cathedral, the masterpiece of Armenian medieval architecture and the church of Saint Hripsime, it is listed in a UNESCO World Heritage Site. At Echmiadzin we will be impressed by its cathedral, the Armenian “Vatican”, residence of the Catholicos and the oldest place of Christian worship in Armenia (303-303).We also visit the Vernissage, the Armenian version of the flea market and various crafts, ceramic, wood, fabric, carpets, embroidery and books. Here you will have the opportunity to buy all kinds of typical Armenian souvenirs. Finishing the visits to return to the hotel. Farewell night in the restaurant accompanied by traditional Armenian dances and songs. Overnight at the hotel.
The reserved transfer to the airport is at a proper time; ending of services.