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Gastronomic tour

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From$735
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550
7 days

We invite you to relish the indescribable flavours and a wide variety of sights in the heritage setting of Armenia. Explore the culinary delights of Armenian cuisine and a wide variety of flavours of Armenian cognac. During the whole trip savour every kind of dishes: from melt-in-your-mouth to succulent, from luscious to scrumptious. Everything is perfectly orchestrated, and we take care of every detail. The special ingredient of this trip is that you are not just experiencing the history and the culture, but tasting it and becoming an active participant in making these tastes! The truly unforgettable experience is worth trying first hand. 

Feel Armenia through its food… 

Price Includes

  • Airport transfer
  • Private transport for the entire route
  • Professional RussianEnglish speaking guide
  • Lunch - 5 times, dinner - 1 time
  • All entrance tickets (Museum of History, Etchmiadzin (with a guide), Garni, Zvartnots)
  • Local guides in museums (History Museum of Armenia)
  • Brandy factory
  • Duduk in the pagan temple of Garni
  • Master classes on baking lavash, cooking kufta, arishta, shish kebab and tolma
  • Bottled spring water (per group member 2 bottles of water every day)

Price Excludes

  • Tips
  • Visa Fee
  • Air Tickets
  • Travel Insurance
  • Hotel
  • Alcoholic Beverages (except tastings)
  • Any Private Expenses
  • Anything not listed above
Itinerary

Day 1Arrival

Arrival to the Airport Zvartnots

Transfer to the Hotel

Check-In

Day 2City-Tour - History Museum of Armenia - Pandok Yerevan restaurant - Brandy factory "ARARAT"

Walking tour in the center of the City. Our extraordinary journey begins with an easy and rich walk along the most important and picturesque streets of Yerevan. Gorgeous views of the city from Victory Park, a small cardio load during the descent along the snow-white Cascade, the smells of Armenian pastries on the avenues full of life, the neoclassical architecture of the greatest Tamanyan – this is what awaits you on the morning of the first day. This is the best start to explore the twelfth capital of Armenia.

An Interesting fact: Yerevan was founded in 782 BC. and older than the “Eternal City” for 29 years

 

History Museum of Armenia. You can feel the true spirit of the Armenian people only through its culture and history – in the richest Museum of History you plunge headlong into the world of ancient Armenians. Before your eyes are chic silver jewelry of women, high-quality sabers and swords of warriors, and a wide variety of clay products from the era of the first civilizations.

Interesting fact: In ancient Armenia, silver jewelry and belts were considered a symbol of nobility and high social status.

 

  • Lunch at “Pandok Yerevan” restaurant. Enjoy the fragrant, colorful, richest Armenian cuisine accompanied by a live performance of folk songs loved by all Armenians. Taste Armenia and hear the melody of her heart.

An interesting fact: in ancient times, the Armenians considered the New Year a sacred holiday, and on this day they did not cook any meat dishes. And it was celebrated not in winter, but in spring.

 

  • Yerevan brandy factory “ARARAT”. The icing on the cake of such a cultural explosion will be the tasting of one of the best and most prestigious alcoholic beverages in the world – the famous Armenian cognac. A tour of the cellars of the factory, the walls of which are built of tuff the color of peach cognac, as well as a tasting with delicious Armenian chocolate, relax and end the day on the sweetest and most positive note.

Interesting fact: Winston Churchill drank 50% Armenian cognac every day

Day 3Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin - Lunch at Machanents House - Master class on cooking Armenian Tolma - Zvartnots Cathedral - GUM

  • Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin. The beginning of the third day in Armenia is a cultural breakthrough in one of the greatest centers of the Christian world – the Etchmiadzin Cathedral, where the residence of the Catholicos of all Armenians is located. The first church was founded about 1700 years ago by the first Catholicos of Armenia, Gregory the Illuminator.

An interesting fact: the Etchmiadzin Museum stores the most ancient relics of the Christian world: the spear of Longinus, with which Jesus was pierced, a piece of Noah’s Ark, the relics of St. Stephen, a particle of the staff of the Apostle Bartholomew.

 

  • Lunch at Machanents House. Machanents House becomes a real gastro-adventure intertwined with culture. Here you need to be extremely careful not to inadvertently drown in the vast ocean of Armenian traditions. National costumes and ceramics, a collection of old clocks, wicker rugs, stone vats for the production of wine, a workshop with many handicrafts in folk motifs, a wine cellar of world poets, where the sayings of famous poets about wine are burned on the back of a chair, a huge sunny kitchen where they cook using the energy of the sun – all this and much more absorbs your mind and does not release until you are overwhelmed with the most pleasant and vivid impressions.

Quote about Armenian hospitality: “I will give you all the flame of my heart. I will give you the fire of my joy and I will give you sparks of joy – I will pick everything up to the coal. Do not freeze in the middle of winter – I will give everything”.

 

  • Master class on cooking Armenian Tolma. Here, on the cozy territory of the Machanents House, an amazing master class will be held on cooking the national Armenian dish – Tolma

An interesting fact: among other things, in Armenia there are varieties of tolma: from a pumpkin flower, with fig leaves, with crayfish, as well as from chicken and fish

 

  • Zvartnots Cathedral. After this super-saturated start, you should calm your spirit down a bit in an absolutely unique place. The ruins of the medieval temple of Zvartnots, being energetically abstracted from the whole world, envelop you with an atmosphere of antiquity and majestic beauty. “The Temple of the Vigilant Angels, included in the UNESCO World Heritage List, is considered a breakthrough in medieval world architecture, and even through the millennia, after so many destructions and invasions, the columns crowned with divine eagles have not lost their grandeur and monumentality.

An interesting fact: in Zvartnots there is one of the oldest and largest “marans” (wine cellar) in all of Transcaucasia.

 

  • GUM.  Now you have an exceptional opportunity to see the real “oriental bazaar” – Yerevan GUM is the largest market in the country, where there is literally everything: all kinds of spices, fruits, dried fruits, a wide range of cheeses, meats, kilograms of sweet, juicy fruits, many vegetables and herbs , juices and compotes, basturma and sujukh and much more. Even if you are not going to buy anything, you still will not leave there hungry, because you will be treated to whatever you want.

An interesting fact: apricots, which are abundant in GUM during the season, are called Armenian apples, since the Armenian Highland is considered their homeland.

Day 4Haghartsin monastery - Goshavank - Lunch at Dolmama restaurant - Master class on cooking Armenian Kufta.

  • Haghartsin monastery. Now you are in the snow-white kingdom of Armenia. The loftiness and royalty of Haghartsin will capture the spirit of even the most experienced traveler. Dense forests surrounding the monastery, the sound of a powerful mountain river, the massive ringing of bells and the kind faces of the wise holy fathers – welcome to Haghartsin.

 

  • Goshavank. The historical journey continues in the monastery of Goshavank, where in the distant 1184 a great man named Mkhitar Gosh was one of the first in the world to speak about women’s rights and made an unprecedented breakthrough in the normative and legal activities of the Middle Ages.

An interesting fact: one of the most luxurious Khachkars in the world flaunts near one of the churches of the monastery, the most delicate patterns of which are literally embroidered with a needle.

 

  • Lunch at Dolmama restaurant. We return to the forest town of Dilijan, which is called “Armenian Switzerland” because of the breathtaking landscapes, and stop at one of the best gastronomic locations in the Tavush region – the Dolmama restaurant.

 

  • Master class on cooking Armenian Kufta. We have reached the most delicious event of the day. Puffy round meatballs, the meat for which is traditionally not rolled through a meat grinder, but beaten to a homogeneous state with a stone mallet, after which it is mixed with onions and spices, become the dish of the day and are prepared with your participation.

Interesting fact: A distinctive feature of Armenian cuisine is the use of a significant amount of salt. Experts explain this by special climatic conditions (salt consumption by the body in hot weather is much higher than in temperate climates).

Day 5Khor Virap - Noravank - Gastro Yard Arman Haghverdyan - Master class on cooking Armenian Shashlik

  • Khor Virap monastery. Today you will meet with one of the most important holy places for the entire Christian world. It was in Khor Virap that back in the 3rd century AD. Gregory the Illuminator, the first Catholicos of all Armenians, was imprisoned. You can go down to the dungeon where St. Gregory would have been imprisoned for more than 13 years. From here you can endlessly enjoy the world’s best view of the biblical Mount Ararat.

An interesting fact: Khor Virap was built on the site of the royal dungeon of the ancient capital of Armenia – the city of Artashat, through which one of the most important routes of the Great Silk Road passed

 

  • Noravank monastery. Once in the fairy tale of the Vayots Dzor region, it would be a crime not to see the luxurious architecture of Noravank with your own eyes. Only here is the concept of luxury here. The tradition of medieval Armenian architecture has always adhered to the modesty of moderation in the choice of architectural elements. But this did not prevent Amagu-Noravank from becoming one of the largest spiritual centers of Armenians. Even more breathtaking from the surrounding mountain landscapes of the monastery, completely covered with a bright red hue.

An interesting fact: on one of the tympanums of the Noravank monastery, a rare bas-relief has been preserved – an image of the Lord holding the head of Adam in his hands.

 

  • Gastro Yard Arman Haghverdyan. And here is the long-awaited tidbit of today’s tour. In the gastro yard of Arman Haghverdyan, you are overwhelmed with completely unfamiliar taste sensations that will remain in the memory of your language receptors for the rest of your life.

Quotes: “This is the eternal problem of Armenian tables – there is always not enough space.” 

 

  • Master class on cooking Armenian Shashlik. In the same colorful restaurant, a master class on cooking juicy Khorovats (shish kebab in Armenian) is organized especially for you.

Interesting facts: every year in mid-August, the Shashlik Festival is held in Armenia, which brings together dozens of the country’s best chefs representing many varieties of Khorovets.

Day 6Arch of Charents - Geghard - Lunch with a master class - Temple of Garni - Professional musician - Sevanavanq - Lunch at Tsahkunk - Master class on cooking Arishta

  • Arch of Charents. The last day in Armenia begins with a delightful sight – an amazing panorama of the Ararat Valley, the city of Yerevan and Mount Ararat. All this can be seen from the observation deck of the monument dedicated to Yeghishe Charents – the Great Armenian poet

Quote: “No matter how sharply they pierce my heart our wounds so soaked with blood, Even then I love my orphaned and my bloodied, dear Armenia.” – Yeghishe Charents.

 

  • Geghard rock monastery. This day becomes special, because you find yourself inside a rock with a sacred spring. Walking through the rocky churches of the Geghard monastery complex, you will learn many interesting stories about the life of Armenia in the 12th-13th centuries.

An interesting fact: in the monastery of Geghard, the spear of Longinus was kept – the very tool with which the Roman legionary pierced the body of Christ. Hence the name “Geghard” (from the Armenian “spear”).

 

  • Lunch with a master class on baking lavash. Taste the bread that once saved the life of the Armenian king. There is a legend that lavash was baked to save King Aram, who was captured by the Assyrian king Nosor. Aram was kept in captivity for 10 days without food before the fight. Sly Aram asked to bring his most beautiful protective shell. Time after time, the messengers handed over to the king a shell with thin bread hidden inside, but Aram allegedly did not like the shell. Finally, on the day of the duel, well-fed and full of strength, Aram defeated Nosor in archery and returned home.

An interesting fact: Lavash cooking technique is included in the UNESCO Intangible Heritage List.

 

  • The pagan temple of Garni. Now we are traveling in time and find ourselves in the Hellenistic era, when the powerful kings of Greater Armenia issued their orders in Greek. In a pagan temple of the first century, vivid images of ancient sacrifices to the Armenian god of the sun – Mithra appear before you. The deep mountain gorge and the noise of the Azat River help the temple make you lose your sense of reality.

 

  • Performance by a professional Armenian musician. Inside the majestic temple, a professional musician plays the national Armenian instrument – Duduk (or Tsiranapokh), the sound of which floods people’s souls with emotions.

An interesting fact: the Duduk melody is included in the UNESCO Intangible Heritage List.

 

  • Sevanavanq Monastery. Now you are in the strong arms of the blue waves of Lake Sevan – the beautiful pearl of Armenian nature. One of the most ascetic and ancient monasteries of the entire region was built on one of the peninsular hills. Sevanavank, founded by Gregory the Illuminator in the 4th century, survived many battles in its lifetime, but was able to resist and preserve its most valuable beauties for you and me.

An interesting fact: In ancient Armenia, water and love were connected by the same sacred power and were ruled by the Goddess Astghik.

 

  • Lunch at Tsahkunk restaurant. For a complete emotional explosion, the chefs of the Tsaghkunk restaurant organize a bright taste revolution for you. Explore Armenian cuisine at the best gastronomic establishment in the Gegharkunik region of the country.

An interesting fact: the Armenian restaurant “Tsaghkunk” won a place in the top ten best restaurants in the world in 2021 according to the famous Forbes magazine.

 

  • Master class on cooking Arishta. Participate in the preparation of national Armenian noodles, after which you will forget about any other pasta.

An interesting fact: Arishta’s favorite gravy for Arishta is Matsun, a fermented milk product that cleanses the intestines and lowers blood pressure.

Day 7 Departure

  • Check out
  • Transfer to the airport
Photos