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We are delighted to introduce a fantastic “New” Solos week of spectacular walking discovering Europe’s best kept secret, Armenia. This beautiful and fascinating country is a hidden gem situated in the Caucasus mountain region between Europe and Asia. Rich in history, Armenia will certainly not disappoint.

Grade : Medium

Day 2(hike to Amberd) (1).jpg

Why Go?

  • New spectacular walking destination
  • Experience dramatic scenery
  • Explore beautiful trails and discover huge canyons,
  • Includes a stay in Yerevan, Armenia’s cosmopolitan capital city
  • Solos Tour Leader throughout the week
  • Experienced and informative walking guide
  • Participate in a traditional Gata-making class
  • Discover an offbeat and largely unknown exciting country

Itinerary

View full itinerary

Following our late arrival at Zvartnots International airport we transfer to our hotel in the capital Yerevan
Overnight Yerevan
Transfer Time: 20 mins approx. depending on traffic conditions

 

  • Accommodation Hotel Ani Grand****
  • MEALS No meals included

After breakfast we check out from the hotel and take our coach transfer to Lake Kari (known as the stone lake) situated on the slopes of Mount Aragats , the highest point of the Republic of Armenia. This is where we start todays exciting walk heading towards the medieval Amberd Fortress. Our route takes us along mountains paths offering us panoramic views across the mountain range and through delightful meadows with varied flora and fauna. We then reach the 7th Century Amberd Fortress. One of the best-preserved feudal castles of Armenia, it is no wonder it’s often described as a gem amongst the medieval architecture of the Caucasus. (entrance fee included). Once we have explored the Fortress we take our coach to our hotel for the night in Odzun in the North of Armenia. Dinner taken at the hotel or local restaurant

Walking Distance: 15km
Descent: 1000m
Grade: Medium
Walking Time: 4.5 hours
Transfer Distance: Yerevan to Lake Kari 60 km , Amberd Fortress to Odzun 150km.
Total Day Transfer Time: 4 hrs

  • Accommodation Hotel Odzun***
  • MEALS Breakfast & Dinner included

This morning after breakfast and hotel check out, we take our transfer coach to the 10th Century Haghpat Monastery. This UNESCO listed world heritage site occupies a commanding position with panoramic views over-looking the forest-grown slopes of the Bazum ridge. After a tour of this fantastic historical site (entrance fee included) we walk to the ancient settlement of Sanahin known for its unique landmark, the Sanahin Monastery. Again, offering us spectacular views, this ancient UNESCO listed monastery was the original educational centre of Armenia. From here our unforgettable hike continues taking us through fields, canyons, over bridges and discovering waterfalls, all with a backdrop of high cliffs, forested mountains, canyons and gorges leading us to the small medieval village of Anker.
At the end of the walk, we take our transfer coach to Dilijan known for its spa resorts and traditional craft workshops where our hotel for the night is situated. On our way we will have a short stop at a the Molokan village of Fioletovo, where the inhabitants preserve their customs and traditions. Here we will enjoy a special samovar tea while talking to the Molokans who will acquaint us with their daily lives and traditions. Dinner at the hotel.

Walking Distance : 9km
Descent : 200m
Ascent : 220m
Grade : Easy to Medium
Walking Time : 3.5 hours
Transfer Distance: Odzun to Haghpat 20km, Lori Region to Dilijan 90km.
Total Day Transfer Time: 2.5 hrs

  • Accommodation Popock Guest House***
  • MEALS Breakfast & Dinner included

Today after breakfast and check out, we take a short transfer to the beautiful Lake Parz. Surrounded by forests of which reflect on the surface of the water, creating a “painting” like effect adding to the splendour. From here we start our hike heading towards Gosh Lake and the Goshavank Monastery. The route takes us through meadows, over bridges, along forest paths and through fields where we may see locals mowing the grass by local methods. Once we reach Lake Gosh, we then continue towards the Goshavank Monastery passing through fields and valleys. Along the way we will see several medieval cross-stones, unique to Armenia. From here we will pass an area where we can look for trees covered with white handkerchiefs, a pre-Christian local tradition thought to bring good fortune that still survives today. In Dilijan we will have lunch in a local house and participate in a traditional gata-making class, a traditional Armenian pastry. We then transfer back to Yeravan, taking a short stop on route near the Sevanavank Monastery to admire the amazing beauty of the scenic Lake Sevan and surrounding landscape. Dinner taken at a local restaurant.


Walking Distance: 10km
Descent : 320m
Ascent: 230m
Grade : Easy to Medium
Walking Time : 4-5 hours
Transfer Distance: Dilijan to Lake Parz 15 km, Goshavank to Yerevan 150km.
Total Day Transfer Time: 3 hrs

  • Accommodation Hotel Ani Grand****
  • MEALS All meals included

After breakfast we drive to the Vayots Dzor region, to the village of Amaghu where we start todays hike. Our route follows the Bezoar goat trail which takes us to one of the highest points of the Arpa gorge. From here we can admire the spectacular scenery over the canyons and over to the Noravank monastery. There is a view point where we can watch the wild bezoar goats through binoculars. We continue along the Noravank trail which connects Nor Amaghu village to the 13th century Noravank monastery. Along the route we will see ancient ruins of old settlements. The trail continues through the canyon, famous for its red rocks and rare and endangered flora and fauna.
At the end of the walk we take our transfer back to Yerevan. Along the way we stop near the Khor Virap Monastery on the Turkish-Armenian border to take in the views across to the biblical Mount Ararat. Dinner taken at local restaurant.

Walking Distance: 5km
Descent: 267m
Ascent: 206m
Grade :Easy
Walking Time : 2.5 - 3 hours
Transfer Distance: Yerevan to Vayots Dzor region 120 km, Noravank to Yerevan 130km.
Total Day Transfer Time: 4 hours

  • Accommodation Hotel Ani Grand****
  • MEALS Breakfast & Dinner included

After breakfast at the hotel we drive to the village of Banavan where we start our days walking. We head towards the Garni Pagan Temple, the only standing Greco-Roman colonnaded building in Armenia. Our route takes us along the Azat river, lined with trees including Walnut trees plus we can also look out and try the blackberries growing along the banks. On reaching the bottom of the gorge, we will find the incredible basalt columns of Armenia, known as the Symphony of the Stones. We will be amazed by the huge basalt rock formations, the highest in Armenia. From here our route takes us up to the 1st Century Hellenistic Sun Temple of Garni (entrance fee included) probably the best known structure and symbol of pre-Christian Armenia. Here we will have the opportunity to take part in the baking of Lavash, a traditional thin bread. From here we drive to the impressive UNESCO listed Gerghard Monastery. This a beautiful medieval structure partly carved into the rock overlooking the picturesque Azat valley. It is described as one of the most beautiful monasteries in the Caucasus. We then head back to our hotel in Yerevan and prepare ourselves for our dinner in a local restaurant.

Walking Distance: 9km
Descent: 120 m
Ascent: 220 m
Grade: Medium
Walking Time : 3 hours
Transfer Distance: Yerevan to Banavan 25km , Temple of Garni to Geghard 10km, Geghard to Yerevan 40km.
Total Day Transfer Time: 1.5 hours

  • Accommodation Hotel Ani Grand****
  • MEALS All meals included

Explore the beautiful sights of the capital Yerevan at your own pace or perhaps take an optional excursion (payable locally) to Echmiadzin, one of the first Christian buildings in the world constructed in the 3rd century. The trip also includes a visit to the archaeological site of Zvartnots with the 7th century UNESCO Heritage temple. Also included is a visit to the Ararat Brandy factory where you can taste the famous Armenian brandy. Lunch and dinner today (at own cost) can be taken in one of the many traditional hotels in this lovely city.

  • Accommodation
  • MEALS Breakfast included

Check out and transfer to the airport for our flight home. (Breakfast box will be provided)

  • Accommodation
  • MEALS Breakfast included

Hotel Ani Grand**** Yerevan

This modern hotel, ideally located in the centre of the capital city, offers comfortable accommodation and a range of facilities.

Rooms Include

Our Superior comfortable rooms include twin/double beds, ensuite bathroom, hair dryer, LED satellite TV’s, mini bar, complimentary water, tea and coffee, free Wi-Fi, safety deposit box,

Facilities Include

Facilities include restaurant, outdoor café, lounge bar, 24 hour reception, indoor swimming pool (closed on Mondays), sauna and massage rooms, fitness centre, gift shop, free Wi-Fi internet access throughout the hotel, 24 hour room service

Odzun Hotel *** Odzun


Offering fantastic views over the mountains, this simple, rustic hotel located amongst the beautiful countryside is an ideal stop for our overnight stay while we continue walking and discovering this fantastic region of Armenia.

Rooms Include

Twin/double beds, shower room, hair-dryer, TV, fridge balcony with mountain views

Facilities Include

Restaurant/bar, terrace, gardens, Wi-Fi in public areas.

Popock Guesthouse*** Dilijan

Located in amazing surroundings, our traditional, simple Armenian boutique style hotel offers lovely views. Renowned for its good service, the Popock is an ideal place to experience authentic Armenian hospitality.

Rooms Include

Twin/Double beds, shower room, TV, free Wi-Fi

Facilities

Restaurant, bar, furnished terrace, garden, free Wi-Fi

APPROX. FLIGHT TIME

London to Kiev – 3 hours 20 mins
Kiev to Yerevan – 2 hours 40 mins

TIME DIFFERENCE

GMT + 4 hours

TEMPERATURE

Average Daily Maximum:
Jan 0°C, Feb 3°C , Mar 10°C, Apr 18°C, May 24°C, Jun 28°C, Jul 33°C, Aug 32°C, Sept 28°C, Oct 20°C, Nov 12°C, Dec 4°C 

What’s included:

  • Return flights & transfer
  • Airport taxes and charges
  • Twin/Double rooms for sole use with private facilities
  • Breakfast Daily, 2 lunches, 5 dinners
  • Welcome drink
  • Accompanying Solos Tour Leader
  • 5 nights 4* accommodation in Yerevan
  • 1 night 3* accommodation in Odzun
  • 1 night 3* accommodation in Dilijan
  • 5 x guided walks
  • Professional English-speaking guide and local hiking guides
  • Entrance Fees to Amberd Fortress and Garni Temple
  • Transfers as per programme
  • Lavash baking and Gata making master class
  • Tea-stop at Molokan’s Village
  • 2 bottles of water per day

What's Extra:

  • Insurance see here
  • Lunch (at own cost)– Items for lunch on the days not included can be bought and ordered from the hotels. Approx prices range from 6USD to 9USD. Example of inclusions bread, cheese, 1 x salad, 1 x type of meat/sausage etc, 1 x type of garnish (rice/potato etc) 1 x seasonal fruit. Depending on the route and timings, lunch may be taken at a restaurant “on route” (at own cost). This will be advised and organised each day with the hiking/tour guide.

 

Useful Information

Visas

British Citizen passport holders can stay in Armenia without a visa up to 180 days per year. More info.

Passport validity
Your passport should be valid for a minimum period of six months from the date of entry into Armenia.

Transfer Time
The transfer time from Zvartnots International Airport to our accommodation is approximately 20 mins

Walking programme
Five guided walks are included in the programme. Your walking guide will advise you in resort of the daily programme. The walking programme is graded as Medium and you can expect to walk between 5 to 15km per day, with some ascents/descents and sometimes rough underfoot terrain and medium altitudes involved. Lunch items are not included unless on days stated. Items for lunch on the days not included can be bought and ordered from the hotels. Approx prices range from 6USD to 9USD. Example of inclusions bread, cheese, 1 x salad, 1 x type of meat/sausage etc, 1 x type of garnish (rice/potato etc) 1 x seasonal fruit. Depending on the route and timings, lunch may be taken at a restaurant “on route” (at own cost). This will be advised and organised each day with the hiking/tour guide.

Below are the distances and travelling information for each walk, however please bear in mind these are approximate and subject to change due to local conditions.

Day 2 Lakes, Mountains and a Fortress
Walking Distance 15km
Descent 1000m
Grade Medium
Walking Time 4.5 hours
Transfer Distance: Yerevan to Lake Kari 60km , Mount Aragats to Odzun 150km.
Total Day Transfer Time: 4 hrs

Day 3 Monasteries and Hiking the Lori Region
Walking Distance 9km
Descent 200m
Ascent 220m
Grade Easy to Medium
Walking Time 3.5 hours
Transfer Distance: Odzun to Haghpat 20km , Lori Region to Dilijan 90km.
Total Day Transfer Time: 2.5 hrs

Day 4 – Lakes, Traditions and Gata Making
Walking Distance 10km
Descent 320m
Ascent 230m
Grade Easy to Medium
Walking Time 4-5 hours
Transfer Distance: Dilijan to Lake Parz 15 km , Goshavank to Yerevan 150km.
Total Day Transfer Time: 3 hrs


Day 5 Trails and Red Rock Canyons
Walking Distance 5km
Descent 267m
Ascent 206m
Grade Easy
Walking Time 2.5 - 3 hours
Transfer Distance: Yerevan to Vayots Dzor region 120km , Noravank to Yerevan 130 km.
Total Day Transfer Time: 4 hours

Day 6 Symphony of Stones, Temples and Traditional Baking
Walking Distance 9km
Descent 120m
Ascent 220m
Grade Medium
Walking Time 3 hours
Transfer Distance: Yerevan to Banavan 25km , Temple of Garni to Geghard 10km, Geghard to Yerevan 40km.
Total Day Transfer Time: 1.5 hours

Check Out Last Day - Due to the early departure for our flight a breakfast box will be provided.


It is your responsibility to ensure that you are fit and well enough to take part in your chosen activity holiday. If you are unsure as to whether the walks are within your capabilities, please contact the office to discuss this matter, thus making sure you appreciate the terrain that you will be walking.

You could be walking across uneven ground in some areas and extreme care must be taken, especially if wet. If used to using a pole/stick, it is advisable to bring it. Please appreciate the route and content of the holiday may change at the time and at the discretion of the guide/organiser, should conditions require. Solo’s Holidays Ltd cannot be held responsible for personal injury, accident or damage to property whilst on these walks other than incidents arising out of the company’s negligence. The guide has the right to refuse to guide a walk with anyone not properly attired.

What to Wear
It is of paramount importance that you have the correct footwear. It is essential to wear walking boots that are comfortable and preferably lightweight, with some ankle support and a good grip. If you already have a pair of boots that you are happy walking in (including during hot/wet weather and on hard ground), then bring these along. However, if you are bringing new footwear, do make sure they are well broken in before you arrive. Experience has shown that wearing 2 pairs of woollen socks adds to comfort.

Whilst we would hope for good weather during your holiday, it is of course impossible to guarantee this. We would therefore recommend you travel with clothing suitable for all conditions, and suggest you use the following checklist as a guideline of what to take:

Walking boots with good ankle support
Waterproofs – jacket and trousers
Walking poles – recommended as they provide good support for the knees, particularly on downhill sections of walks and when conditions are wet/slippery
Lightweight trousers and shorts with pockets
Shirts or t-shirts for walking in
Walking socks – several pairs
Lightweight fleece or jumper
Hat & gloves
Daysack/rucksack for walking
Umbrella – it can be used also for protection from the sun as well as rain
Lightweight drinking bottle to carry water whilst walking
Small first aid kit – plasters, insect repellent, etc
Good, high factor sunscreen, sunhat and sunglasses

Gratuities
We suggest a Group Collection to cover transfer drivers, and hotel staff of £80 per person. Your Tour Leader will collect this on your behalf and distribute it accordingly, thus relieving you of the burden of who, when and how much to tip. The tipping of housekeeping will be left to your individual discretion (a small amount left in your room on departure should cover this and would be much appreciated). As is customary, ‘the hat’ will be passed around for the driver and guide on all optional excursions. For any meals that are not included in your itinerary, or taxi fares, your Tour Leader can advise of an appropriate % to add on.

More to Explore
There will be plenty for you to see and do during your own leisure time during the course of your holiday, full details of which will be given out at your Information Meeting by your Tour Leader. Please note that prices shown are approximate and may vary according to numbers. Full details will be given at your Information Meeting. All tours must be paid for in euros only. Your Tour Leader will help arrange these for you and explain where you will need to go but may not necessarily accompany you.

Matenadaran – the depository of one of the richest and oldest manuscript collections of the world
Vernissage – an open air museum-market where you can find the best examples of Armenian art, unique jewellery

Currency
Armenian Dram

You can take Euros, US dollars and Pound Sterling as there are a lot of exchange places in Yerevan but please note that the exchange places in the regions are limited. Credit and debit cards can be used in most places.

Depart Return Nights Age Group Price From regional flights available COMMENTS  
28 Sep 2020 05 Oct 2020 7 All Ages £1,629 Medium BOOK
Medium

What’s included:

  • Return flights & transfer
  • Airport taxes and charges
  • Twin/Double rooms for sole use with private facilities
  • Breakfast Daily, 2 lunches, 5 dinners
  • Welcome drink
  • Accompanying Solos Tour Leader
  • 5 nights 4* accommodation in Yerevan
  • 1 night 3* accommodation in Odzun
  • 1 night 3* accommodation in Dilijan
  • 5 x guided walks
  • Professional English-speaking guide and local hiking guides
  • Entrance Fees to Amberd Fortress and Garni Temple
  • Transfers as per programme
  • Lavash baking and Gata making master class
  • Tea-stop at Molokan’s Village
  • 2 bottles of water per day

What's Extra:

  • Insurance see here
  • Lunch (at own cost)– Items for lunch on the days not included can be bought and ordered from the hotels. Approx prices range from 6USD to 9USD. Example of inclusions bread, cheese, 1 x salad, 1 x type of meat/sausage etc, 1 x type of garnish (rice/potato etc) 1 x seasonal fruit. Depending on the route and timings, lunch may be taken at a restaurant “on route” (at own cost). This will be advised and organised each day with the hiking/tour guide.

 

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