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DepartureDecember 28
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Western Armenia (Trabzon, Hamshen) 6 day tour

Tour price: starts from 0 USD Duration of the tour: 6 days The tour distance: 2800 km ( 1740 miles ) Tour type: Tour to Western Armenia

Minimum number of people in the group - 15

Day 1

In the morning you leave Yerevan and by way of Gyumri you set off to Akhlkalaki which is the centre of Javakhk. You cross the Armenian Georgian border at Bavra.  You arrive in Akhalkalaki. After a short rest you cross the Georgian Turkish border at Karzakhi.
After crossing the border you find yourself in the Armenian plateau, greater part of which is in Western Armenia /about 140000 square km/.  On the way you visit Lake Cildir, surrounded by a mountainous region.  You continue your way to Tortum Waterfall. Tortum Waterfall is both a unique and not to be missed attraction full of natural beauty and wonder. With a total drop of 48 meters, the waterfall creates a giant splash. You also visit Oshkvank Monastery, built in the second half of the 10th century. You arrive in Artvin and check-in at the hotel.
Overnight at the hotel Grand Artvin 5*.

  • Lake Cildir
  • Lake Tortum
  • Tortum Waterfall
  • Oshkvank monastery
  • Oshkvank monastery
Day 2

After breakfast you have a tour around the city of Artvin. Here you visit the church of Holy Mother of God and Artvin fortress. You drive to Hopa (Hamshen). You have a tour around the city. You continue your way to Trabzon. You have a city tour. You visit St. Sophia church, a beautiful and picturesque church converted into a mosque and later into a museum that still has stunning frescoes within. You also visit Trabzon Fortress, constructed on foundations dating back to Byzantine era with cut stones from former structures at site. The castle stretches from a hill on the backside of the city to the Black Sea shore.
Overnight  at the hotel Yali Park 5*.

  • Armenian church in Artvin
  • Artvin Fortress
  • St Sophia, Trabzon
  • Trabzon fortress
  • Trabzon fortress
Day 3

You leave for Erzurum. On the way you stop at Matchka. You visit Sumela Monastery, a Greek Orthodox monastery dedicated to the Virgin Mary. The monastery nestled in a steep cliff was founded in 13th century during the reign of the Emperor Theodosius I. Then you continue your way to Bayburt, once an important center on the ancient Silk Road. It was visited by Marco Polo. Remains of its medieval castle still exist. You arrive in Erzrum and check-in at the hotel. Here you visit Erzrum Castle, Sanassaryan College, Armenian Church which was turned into a mosque.
Overnight at the hotel Rafo 4*.

  • Sumela Monastery
  • Sumela Monastery
  • Bayburt Fortress
  • Armenian Church in Erzurum
  • Erzrum Castle
Day 4

After breakfast you set off to Mush. Here you visit St. Marine church, the Armenian cemetery, Sulukh Bridge where Gevorg Chaush was killed in an unequal fight. You continue you way to Van. On the way you stop at Por Village, the birthplace of famous Armenian writer William Saroyan.
40km way to Akhtamar Island lies along the shores of Lake Van. You cannot help admiring the beauty of the lake that looks like a pearl surrounded by mountains. It takes 15 minutes to get to Akhtamar Island by boat. On approaching the island you are met by St. Cross church which was built by architect Manvel from 915 to 921. You have dinner in “Akhtamar” restaurant on the shore of Lake Van. Here Van tarekh is served. You drive up to Varagavank (built at the end of 10th century), the most remarkable holy place in Vaspurakan. You arrive in one of the magnificent places in Western Armenia – the first capital of Armenia, Van.
Overnight at the hotel Haldi 5*.

  • St. Marine church
  • Sulukh Bridge
  • St. Cross church
  • Akhtamar Island
  • Varagavank Monastery
Day 5

After breakfast you visit Van Castle (built during the Urartian period) where the mausoleums of Menua, Argishti and Rusa are situated. Then you visit Mher’s Door which never opens. You continue your way to Kars. On the way you see the picturesque waterfall of Berkri. On the way you stop at Bayazet ( Bayazet fortress)  and Igdir, the birthplace of Dro.
You arrive in Kars. It is one of the former five capitals in Western Armenia. In 928 Kars was the 10th capital of Armenia. You start the tour around Kars. St. Apostle’s church which was built during the reign of king Abas Bagratuni /928-953/ is a magnificent structure, still standing but it has been turned into a mosque. You admire the beauty of the fortress. Those who want can go up to the fortress from where they can have a beautiful panorama of the city. You go over across St. Vardan Bridge; see well preserved two storeyed buildings in black tuff and the ruins of Charents’ paternal house alongside them.
Overnight at the Hotel Grand Ani 4+*

  • Van Fortress
  • Waterfall of Berkri
  • Bayazet Fortresss
  • St. Apostle’s church
  • Kars Fortress
Day 6

40 minutes on the road and you arrive in Ani. You are met by the Smbatashen walls on which just in front of the entrance you can see the coat of arms of the Bagratunis – a running lion. In 961 Ani became the 11th capital of Armenia. It is famous for its churches. The Mother Cathedral was built by architect Trdat (989-1001). It is considered to be the masterpiece of Armenian architecture. The general structure of the church of Holy Redeemer was so solid that when it was ruined in two halves, its dome wasn’t damaged. The church of Tigran Honents is decorated with different reliefs and frescoes inside and outside. Walking about Ani you see numerous churches and ruins of magnificent buildings.
You leave for the Turkish Georgian border. You leave for Akhalkalak. Arrival in Yerevan.

  • The Mother Cathedral
  • The church of Holy Redeemer
  • The church of Tigran Honents
  • The church of St. Grigor Abughamrents
  • The Fortress of Smbatashen

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Tour to Western Armenia
Tour to Western Armenia
Tour to Western Armenia
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