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Common Mistakes to Avoid When Creating Your Own Blog Site
Creating your own blog site can be an exciting venture, allowing you to express your thoughts and share your expertise with the world. However, there are some common mistakes that many beginners make when embarking on this journey. In this article, we will discuss these mistakes and provide tips on how to avoid them.
Choosing the Wrong Platform
One of the most crucial decisions you will make when creating your own blog site is choosing the right platform. With so many options available, it is easy to get overwhelmed and make a hasty decision. However, selecting the wrong platform can hinder your blog’s growth and limit its potential.
To avoid this mistake, take some time to research different platforms and understand their features and limitations. Consider factors such as ease of use, customization options, SEO capabilities, and available plugins or themes. WordPress is a popular choice for bloggers due to its flexibility and extensive community support.
Neglecting Mobile Responsiveness
In today’s mobile-driven world, it is essential that your blog site is mobile-responsive. Neglecting this aspect can lead to a poor user experience for visitors accessing your site from their smartphones or tablets.
To ensure mobile responsiveness, choose a responsive theme or template that adjusts seamlessly across various screen sizes. Test your blog site on different devices to ensure it looks good and functions well on each one. Additionally, optimize images and videos for faster loading times on mobile devices.
Overlooking Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Even if you create compelling content for your blog site, it won’t reach its full potential if you overlook search engine optimization (SEO). SEO helps improve your website’s visibility in search engine results pages (SERPs), driving organic traffic to your blog.
To avoid this mistake, conduct keyword research using tools like Google Keyword Planner or SEMrush to identify relevant keywords for each blog post. Optimize your content by incorporating these keywords naturally into your titles, headings, and body text. Additionally, focus on creating high-quality backlinks from reputable websites to improve your blog’s authority.
Ignoring the Power of Social Media
Another common mistake when creating a blog site is ignoring the power of social media for promoting your content. Social media platforms provide an excellent opportunity to connect with your audience, build a community around your blog, and drive traffic to your site.
To avoid this mistake, create profiles on popular social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. Share your blog posts regularly and engage with your followers by responding to comments and messages. Consider using social media scheduling tools like Hootsuite or Buffer to streamline your posting process.
In conclusion, when creating your own blog site, it is essential to avoid common mistakes that can hinder its growth and success. Choose the right platform that suits your needs, ensure mobile responsiveness for a seamless user experience, optimize your content for search engines, and leverage the power of social media for promotion. By avoiding these mistakes and implementing best practices, you can create a successful blog site that captivates readers and helps you achieve your blogging goals.
This text was generated using a large language model, and select text has been reviewed and moderated for purposes such as readability.
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WELCOME TO ARMENIA
Discover every hidden corner of armenia with us, about absolute armenia.
Barev dzez! We are Aram & Megan, two travel bloggers who passionately love promoting tourism in Armenia .
We started this Armenia travel blog with a mission of helping those visiting Armenia plan their trip (and do it with ease)! On this site, you will find everything from things to do in Armenia to where to stay, what to eat, and more!
Our goal is to make your entire experience in Armenia an enjoyable and easy one. Happy to have you here and welcome to beautiful Armenia !
Get Started here!
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Travel to Armenia – Tips and Information Guide (2023)
From enjoying the world’s longest cable car ride through the mesmerising landscapes of Vorotan canyon to admiring some of the oldest monasteries on record, these are just some of the reasons you should travel to Armenia .
When you travel in Armenia you will often wonder, how come more people aren’t placing Armenia higher on their bucket list?
Not a lot of nations can boast to have preserved their rich cultural heritage dating far back as the ancient times. The perfect examples being the town Yerevan, that is 28 years older then Rome or, their 6,000 year old wine making tradition!
This small country will draw you in with it’s capturing landscapes, ancient monuments and unparalleled hospitality. If you’re up for discovering one of Europe’s best kept secrets travel to Armenia!
Table of Contents
Things To Do In Yerevan
Accommodation in yerevan, restaurants in yerevan, nightlife in yerevan, things to do in tatev, accommodation in tatev, restaurants in tatev, accommodation in garni, accommodation in dilijan, an introduction on travel to armenia.
Armenia is not a country that often rings a bell with tourists, which is actually surprising given that it is such an interesting country with an incredibly old, rich and eventful history, fascinating culture and beautiful nature.
The hospitable inhabitants, delicious food and cheap prices, together with a lack of (western) tourists make it a wonderful destination.
The history of Armenia has been nothing short of eventful. It has seen countless invasion as its strategic position was the reason for constant fights over this territory, especially during the Ottoman-Persian wars (from the 16 th century).
Over the course of history numerous major conflicts afflicted the country. Already centuries ago Armenia was battling the Roman Empire (62), invading the Byzantine empire (1145) and losing west Armenia to Turkey while the rest of the country was being Sovietized (1920) to name a few.
Armenia has also been the subject of many mythical stories, like the stranding of the ark of Noach on Mt Ararat, the holy mountain of Armenia, or the conversion to Christianity.
Nowadays the country is mostly known for the horrors of the Armenian genocide and as the first country in the world that adopted Christianity as its state religion.
More presently, the current poor relations with Turkey stem from their role in the genocide and there is a still unresolved conflict with Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh, a disputed territory operating as a de facto state that is an unrecognized ethnic Armenian enclave within Azerbaijan.
So over the centuries much has happened in Armenia, which is why it is so interesting in a cultural sense. Not only for culture buffs though, as the small country packs a great variety in magnificent landscapes that will surely satisfy nature lovers.
General Advice For Travelling In Armenia
If you’re thinking about travelling to Armenia, here are the general things you need to know before you go.
Outside of the capital you can easily assume that nobody speaks English. The language that is spoken is Armenian with its own alphabet.
You can get by fairly well with Russian though as it is the most common foreign language in the country and many Armenians understand it. Road signs are usually in English and in Armenian.
Try to learn a few words like hello (barev) and thank you (mersi), which is much appreciated by the locals. Most accommodation and tour providers speak just enough English to be able to sort things out (if not, try some self-invented sign language which usually works. Or not).
Armenians are very friendly and will try their hardest to help you out, even when they don’t speak a word of English. It’s not uncommon to attract a group of about 10 Armenians when asking for directions, everyone weighing in with one or two words in English and their take on the directions you should have.
Armenia has an interesting, varied and delicious cuisine, with some dishes being well known even beyond Armenia like Shashlick and Dolma.
A lot of the dishes are meat based and they throw everything on grills and barbecue, including vegetables. Soon you’ll notice that the delicious barbecue smell is present basically everywhere you go.
You will eat a lot of Lavish, thin flatbread that is made in a traditional ‘tonir’ oven and is complimentary with almost every dish but doesn’t bore easily.
Common ingredients in Armenian dishes are lamb, eggplant, yoghurt, cottage cheese, grape leaves and many fragrant spices.
There are too many dishes to list and specify if they are delicious or not. I recommended to just try out a lot of different dishes and ask the person who is selling the food what they like.
Armenians appreciate tourists taking an interest in their culture, including food, and asking questions about it usually gets you an excited Armenian and something tasty to eat.
In that way you get to try some new things and there aren’t any exceptionally weird dishes anyway so it is rather safe to do.
Most of the local beer is nothing special, except in Yerevan where there is a very new craft brewery called Dargett. They make absolutely delicious craft beer and the place is packed with young locals on the weekend.
But in terms of drinks the real speciality lies in wine and cognac. Armenian cognac is world famous, thus the Yerevan Brandy Company is proudly presented as a major attraction of the city with tasting tours and a museum (Ararat Museum).
Armenia and Georgia are one of the oldest wine producing countries in the world, with grape cultivation going back to ancient times. Well recognised within the wine world and producing some of the best quality wines there are, make sure to try out a few.
There are a lot of vineyards and factories throughout the country, the most famous one that is open to visitors is the Areni factory. I wouldn’t say it is really worth a visit unless you are passing by anyways, you can take a tour and taste some wines here.
Tap water is generally safe to drink, but as you’re in a different country there can always be different bacteria’s than that you are used to that upset your stomach.
In mountain areas (like Tatev) there are often many tap fountains in streets etc. providing delicious water from the mountains.
The currency is the Armenian Dram. It is very well possible to have a low budget holiday, whilst it is also tempting to splurge on food and stuff because it is all quite cheap.
For accommodation we paid on average 15 dollars per person a day which gets you rather nice accommodation. Food is inexpensive as well, in restaurants we paid around 6-8 dollar for a meal plus drinks.
Gas is around 0.86 dollar per litre.
Travelling in Armenia is completely safe. Never once did we feel unsafe somewhere. The only area prone to unrest is the Nagorno Karabakh border due to the before mentioned conflict.
The border between Azerbaijan and Armenia is closed and it is best to avoid the border area all together. Other than that the border with Turkey is closed (due to conflicts between the two countries) so you can’t cross it anyway.
Use your common sense and general precautions for petty crime etc. like you would anywhere.
Buses and share taxis (marshrutkas) get you to most of the major places for cheap but I always prefer to have my own car.
The landscape is just really nice to drive through with enough interesting stops along the way that you’ll want to decide yourselves when you get out.
We rented our car with Sixt and picked it up in Yerevan and dropped off in Tblisi, Georgia (other way around is not possible due to regulations).
If you rent with international companies like Sixt, Hertz e.g. the cheapest car would be around 40 dollar a day. Often you can get cheaper deals with local companies.
Make sure you get the full insurance as the roads can be in quite a bad shape. Unless you really want to go far up in the mountains there isn’t necessarily the need for a 4WD in Armenia as you can get to most places, albeit a bit bumpy sometimes.
The Best Places To Visit In Armenia
Now that you know the basics of the country, it’s time to check out the best places to visit in Armenia.
The capital is a great place to start you trip and spend a day or 2. Contradictory to what you might expect from a Soviet era city, it is quite metropolitan.
It has a lively nightlife scene with clubs, hip restaurants and European style bars. Mixed with the many remains of older days, like the typical pink colored soviet buildings and monuments or the 17 th century neighborhood Kond,
Yerevan has its very own appearance. You won’t find any grand landmarks here, rather it is just a nice place to absorb the atmosphere and familiarize yourself a bit with the country you are in.
The Armenian genocide museum is well worth the visit if you want to learn and understand a bit more about Armenians, their history and relations with neighboring countries like Turkey.
There are a few other museums, like the History museum of Armenia and the National Gallery that are interesting as well.
Yerevan is incredibly old, 2800 years to be exact, which is 28 years older than Rome. Thus, it is drenched in interesting history.
A good way to learn more about this is one of the mentioned museum or a (free) walking tour.
A prominent feature of the city centre are the cascade stairs. It is a large stairwell that leads to the grim Soviet monument (not one for extravagant decorating those soviets) erected for celebrating 50 years of Soviet Armenia.
It provides great views over the city and to the massive statue mother of Armenia, supposedly placed defiantly in the direction of Turkey.
Underneath the stairwell is a contemporary art museum which you can enter for free and that you’ll pass through if you decide to take the escalator instead of the stairs to the monument.
You can wander around in the 17 th century neighborhood ‘Kond’, that really feels like a separate part of the city where incredibly old and derelict houses sit on the narrow streets and alleys.
Lover’s park is a small park that is excellent for a bit of relaxing and watching the locals going about their day, grabbing coffee or playing chess and other board games, a favourite pastime activity of many.
There are enough hostels and guesthouses in the city. The Envoy Hostel is a highly recommended hostel and is small but good, the staff is helpful and the location is perfect. Homestays like Anahit Stepayan ’s are quite popular as well if you’d choose for a more local experience.
The restaurant called ‘ The Club ’ is my favourite place. It is a bit hidden in a basement underneath a clothing store. The atmosphere, absolutely delicious (and cheap) food and the fact that there was not another tourist to be seen make it a great place.
In the evening the city comes a bit more alive around the square, where there are many (trendy) bars and restaurants and well-dressed locals making their way for an evening of dining and drinking, a seemingly favourite activity of Armenians.
There are plenty of Western style bars, like an Irish, Beatles and 90’s bars. Most of the bars have a very unobtrusive entrance and are in the basement of the residency buildings.
Around the big square there a few more, but rather tacky looking, bars. I can absolutely recommend the Calumet Bar .
A small, warm bar filled with very lively locals. We spent two nights in a row there and had a great time.
On one occasion we met a group of guys who looked equally bewildered, out of place and fascinated as us. They turned out to be pretty much the only western people we’ve seen on our trip and together we enjoyed looking at the Armenians getting their groove on that night.
The bar goers were very friendly and interested in our country like we were in theirs. The level of English is notably better with young people in the capital.
Like mentioned before, if you like craft beer head over to Dargett to taste some great homemade craft beer and have a meal. It is quite western but rather popular with (young) locals.
Tatev has become known mostly for the longest cable cart in the world, the wings of Tatev, that lead to the Tatev monastery.
Most people arrive in Tatev by cable cart, have a look at the monastery and return. However, there is plenty to see and the drive alone through the Vorotan canyon is worth it.
If you leave from Yerevan it is a 4 to 5 hour drive, that takes you through an incredible varied landscape, starting with arid, desert like surroundings when you leave the capital.
It’s not too long before some thin pasture appears and many fruit and vegetable stalls alongside the road.
After a while the road climbs up into the mountains, 2 hours or so later you’ll cross a mountain pass and suddenly the landscape has changed to green hills and endless fields with blooming wildflowers, while the air is substantially colder due to the elevation.
The vendors have changed as well, now there are people selling honey on the side of the road. The road eventually leads to a junction where the main road continues to Goris (another destination worth checking out) and the secondary road to Tatev.
This road goes through a few old and derelict villages. Some of them look like a war has struck with streets full of rumble and scrap metal. Rusty old decaying cars, trucks and tractors are parked everywhere.
A man is sweeping up big pick piles of rocks, with a broom (probably still working on that I assume). The side streets are unpaved, rocky and full of holes. People stared at us unabashed, I don’t think they have seen many western tourists passing through here.
Granted, our shiny red Nissan Micra didn’t do a good job in hiding the fact that we were tourists either, as old Lada’s really are the only cars locals drive.
After passing through those villages, a zigzag road takes you along the edge of the canyon, providing magnificent views from several nice viewpoints, like the medieval bell chapel.
The road winds all the way down to the canyon to cross the river, only to go right back up the mountains again on a gravel road to reach the village of Tatev.
It is a very small village and pretty quiet, with most tourists concentrating in the area around the cable cart and the monastery.
There are a number of short and longer hikes in the area. We hiked to Mount Petroskhach, which takes you through the old part of the village up into the hills, providing magnificent views across a large part of the steep canyon, which seems to have an almost straight drop from the plateau.
The trail is sometimes a bit difficult to follow as there are a number of trails leaving from the area. We asked a few locals for directions, ignored their advice anyway and went the wrong way (obviously).
Down in the canyon where you crossed the river by car, there is a small parking spot. From here you can follow the footpath alongside the river which takes you through bushy, shrubs and across the river.
In summer the area around the river is teeming with life, lots of butterflies, dragonflies, other insects, fish, birds and many flowers. Be aware that there are snakes as well, take caution when walking into thick grass.
The path leads to the Tatevi Anapat monastery, a complex dating from the 17 th century, which was abandoned by the monks due to an earthquake in 1658 resulting in the ruins that you see here today.
It has this amazing Indiana Jones feeling to it, as an ancient complex slowly taken back by nature, barely visible from the road. Upon entering the main building, which is still quite intact, a soft voice filled the room.
Near the altar there was a monk praying, dressed in his long black robe. Apparently he is still living here all by himself.
The path continues along the river, we didn’t take it due to lack of time but it looks very promising. Following your way back to the parking lot there are a number of viewing platforms over the river.
They call this area Devil’s bridge (Satani Kamurj), named like that because the formation of it seemed improbable, therefore it must be the Devil’s work.
From the viewing platforms you can’t really see that much of it, however you can get down in the river and explore the incredible caves alongside it.
Down in the river it really looks like a scene coming straight out of a fairy tale.
Moss and plants gracefully decorate the walls, while stalactites in all kind of shapes and colours hang from the cave ceilings and form weird terraces around pools, the water containing (supposedly) healing minerals. It gives the impression that you’re walking in a movie set or a themepark attraction.
From down in the river you can also see the Devil’s bridge much better. To get down there you follow the footpath from the viewing platforms all the way to the end, where there is a small hanging rope to get you down onto a wobbly ladder and finally in the river. This rope is a bit hidden between the bushes.
Be aware that it is all a little bit treacherous and one could easily fall and slip and you also have to wade through the river.
At some points the river flows quite fast, we decided to plunge in and let the river takes us somewhere, which landed us at another amazing spot.
Getting back upstream proved a bit more difficult, but also guarantees some hilarious videos of your travelmates struggling to return while the river keeps pushing you back.
It is not a very big or deep river so nothing too dangerous. It is absolutely worth it to get down in the river, this really made us feel like true explorers.
Back in Tatev the monastery is well worth a visit of course. If you continue down the road for a bit there is a nice viewpoint that looks out over the monastery and canyon. The monastery is perched beautifully on a rock overlooking the whole canyon.
We stayed for 2 days but it is an area that begs to be explored. The beautiful canyon has walking paths following the river that you just want to follow and see where it ends up or take one of the small unpaved roads and just see where it goes.
At this point we turned back in the direction of Yerevan, if you continue the road it will take you to even higher mountains and eventually to the border crossing with Iran.
I highly recommend Saro’s Bed and Breakfast . We were welcomed by Saro’s sister Maro, who is very friendly and hospitable and made sure we were provided with everything we needed, like homemade lemonade, cakes, coffee and she even brought us some lunch to take on a hike at no charge.
Most of the dinner is prepared on the big barbecue and delicious as well. Dolma, rabbit stew and a bottle of homemade red wine make for a great meal.
Maro’s dad also takes guests on a little excursion into the mountain in his old jeep. There are a number of options for guesthouses and bed and breakfasts in Tatev though.
On the drive from Yerevan you’ll pass the Areni Wine Factory. There are also people selling wine everywhere at the side of the road in plastic cola bottles, apparently for Irani truck drivers (as they are not allowed to drink alcohol in Iran thus have to hide it).
There are no supermarkets in Tatev. Stock up on some items and make sure your accommodation can provide all your required meals. There is however a small information centre with a small café. They can also provide with you with hiking routes, maps etc. Saro’s bed and breakfast is also a restaurant for non-guests.
Garni is a town close to Yerevan and for a rather big settlement the road leading to it from the capital is quite strange (or we took a wrong route).
Leaving Yerevan the road suddenly consists of more dirt and holes than actual tarmac. The landscape is incredibly dry for a bit, although it still is a habitat for quite some birds.
Garni itself is a small town with the major attractions being the Garni temple, the only pagan temple in Armenia, the Geghard monastery and the beautiful Garni gorge with the adjacent Khosov nature reserve.
You can enter the Garni gorge from both side of town by car or on foot. Inside the Garni gorge you’ll find this incredible miracle of nature called the Symphony of Stones, a rather fitting name for stone walls that are carved out in perfect cube like pillars.
You can drive the dirt road all the way to the other entrance but after a while we were afraid our Nissan Micra couldn’t take it anymore with all the massive bumps and holes in the road.
There are many hiking trails in the Khosov nature reserve. If you come from Garni the entrance is quite unclear. I drove to the entrance on google maps, a dirt road climbing up the hill.
Eventually a guarded gate signed the entrance and that you could not go further with car, however there was no real parking place either. Thus from Garni it is best to walk to the entrance or enter from the other side.
The Geghard monastery is amazing, but very touristic. Like tour buses touristic, so be there early to avoid crowds and marvel at this dark coloured, ancient complex without too many tourists.
The Garni temple is beautifully perched on top of the ridge overlooking the gorge, best to visit it at the end of the day for nice lighting.
The nearby restaurant is excellent, and also has one of the best terraces I have ever seen, overlooking the gorge and the temple.
We had rented a whole house (called ‘ Dinadav House ’) for ourselves for around 50 dollar in total. There are a number of options on booking.com and It is quite nice to stay in a residents house back in a neighbourhood to get a more local feeling.
Moving up north, Dilijan presents a completely different landscape again. Also commonly referred to as the Switzerland of Armenia, this is a small town in between lush green forests and hills.
There is not much to do other than hike the beautiful surroundings and visit some monasteries like Haghartsin, which can keep you busy for a few days though.
A bit further there is also a zipline but we stuck with the hiking. We hiked near the Haghartsin monastery, which can be reached by a road with twists and turns that begs to be driven with an old school convertible and a hot girl next to you, unfortunately we had to do it with a Nissan Micra and two dudes.
The forests are just like how I expect a real forest to be: lush, plenty of variation in the vegetation and full of blooming flowers.
It is a forest where you just expect to see a bear, or some creature from a fairytale pop up from behind a tree any minute.
We stayed in the Belvedere Eco Rest Zone , located 10 minutes out of town, and beautifully situated near the river. The food is nice, staff is friendly and the rooms are perfectly fine and very cheap. There are a few hotel/hostel options in town as well.
Monasteries In Dilijan
Armenia was the first country in the world to adopt Christianity as its state religion. The story goes that after a Christian (Gregory the Illuminator) cured the Armenian king of a grave illness, he agreed to convert to Christianity, which happened in 301 AD.
Around 95% of the population nowadays is Christian, while Armenia is surrounded by Muslim countries except for Georgia.
As the country had such a major role in establishing Christianity, you will encounter a lot of monasteries and other religious sites.
All these incredibly old buildings and associated tales and myths instil a mysterious and ancient atmosphere to many of the sites that we visited.
You’ll notice one common denominator among the monasteries and that is they sure knew how to pick spectacular locations to build them, usually perched on some cliff surrounded by a dramatic landscape. A few noteworthy monasteries that I visited are listed below:
This 13 th century monastery is located on the way from Yerevan to Tatev, close to Areni, which is a nice little detour. It is beautifully situated in a landscape that most closely resembles the Grand Canyon; hot, dry, and with red dirt mountains.
The complex has a few different churches and chapels and it was the residency of Syunik’s bishops in the 13 th century. It is however, very busy with tourists.
A 9 th century monastery in Tatev (obviously). It is located on the edge of a plateau overlooking the gorge set in a spectacular landscape.
You can go inside the complex, but if you follow the road for a little bit there is a great viewpoint of the monastery. If you venture a bit through the bushes you can see a waterfall coming down as well.
The monastery played an important role as an spiritual centre and medieval university in Armenia.
Founded in the 4 th century in Garni, this dark coloured monastery complex is surrounded by cliffs and located next to a gorge.
The inside, and especially the cave chambers, feels so old (well they are, 4 th century!) and it has a bit of mysterious vibe to it, like you are stepping back in time.
The vendors and tour buses at the entrance detract the atmosphere a bit, but it is definitely worthwhile.
We did not visit one of the most famous monasteries, as there were thick clouds that day and it is famous for having the snow-capped peak of Ararat in the background.
We were also out of time and guessed it would be another busy monastery as well, as this is one of the most popular landmarks in Armenia.
Gregory the Illuminator was 13 years imprisoned here by the king before he cured him of an illness after which the king and country converted to Christianity.
The construction of a chapel already began in 642, the current church was however finished in the 17 th century. It is located a few kilometres of the main highway around Yerevan.
A 13 th century monastery in Dilijan beautifully located in the lush green forests. It is small and not completely intact anymore but worth a visit. It is quite nice and the main building (church) is still intact.
Also the starting point from a number of trails in the forests so perfect for combining those activities.
There are many more monasteries, churches and other religious site of interest. Many can be done in a day tour from Yerevan (hostels organise these).
Note: When I say busy with tourists, these are almost exclusively domestic Armenian and Georgian tourists. No tour buses with Asians or Europeans here. Best to get there early to avoid crowds. There are no entrance fees to the monasteries. The more popular ones will charge you a very small fee for parking.
These places will take you around the country, which we did in 8 days. It is not very big but there is plenty to see, I’d recommend to take at least 8 days to explore Armenia.
It is still a rather underrated destination, apparent by the low number of tourists that visit the country. It should however receive much more attention, as I have never been to a country before that made me feel like a true explorer without the discomfort of one.
The history is endlessly interesting and the landscapes fascinating. I’d say the country is the perfect introduction to one of the most interesting corners of the world, standing at the crossroads of Eastern Europe and Western Asia.
[box] That’s it for my travel to Armenia guide. Leave a comment below if this has helped you, or if you have something to add.[/box]
About the Author - Thijs Broekkamp
Thijs Broekkamp is a photographer and aspiring travel writer based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Like many, he tries to travel as much as possible and looks for interesting and authentic experiences on his journeys. Nature, grand landscapes or wildlife and cultural heritage or fascinating locals receive the most attention, preferably paired with delicious cuisine. Has a knack for getting in an unfortunate situation or two on every trip. Interested in the whole world, but special fascination for far eastern Europe and Central Asia. You can check out his work on the website www.thijsbroekkamp.com and www.Instagram.com/komorebi_photography
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13 thoughts on “Travel to Armenia – Tips and Information Guide (2023)”
I highly recommend a visit to Yerevan. The city is filled with beautiful architecture and rich history, and the people are incredibly friendly and welcoming. I had a wonderful time exploring the city’s vibrant culture through its delicious food, unique museums, and lively nightlife
Hi, thank you for your great article! We’ll be going to Armenia tomorrow and I was wondering about the car rental. Where did you rent the car and do you think it is possible to do a similar trip with local buses? Thanks for your help 🙂
Hi Lauriane, sorry for the late reply. We hope you had a great time in Armenia. Happy travels
My daughter and I are going on our first trip to Armenia in the summer of 2020. I read your blog and look forward to my trip! Thank you, now I know more about Armenia! Great photos!
Hi Tori, I hope your trip is still on. Have a wonderful time. Happy travels
Hey, Thank you for this beautiful article. We are planning a trip a to Armenia and wanted to know if we rent a car can we do, Garni, Geghard, Dilijan and Lake Sevan on the way in an entire day if we leave early morning? We do not want to stay anywhere as we will be based in Yerevan. A Nissan Micra would be enough for this journey? We are traveling in October. Do google maps work here accurately? Thank you so much for your help!
Hi, thank you so much. About all the destinations with a car rental, we are not too sure sorry. Maybe contact the car rental company. They may be able to help. All the best. Happy travels
Thanks a lot for telling about your adventurous trip. Leaving for Armenia in a few days, liked your writing, hope to love this country ss you did.
Glad the article helped. All the best with your trip.
Thanks. I’m in Georgia now, then Turkey.Bulgaria, Romania . I’m going to Armenia end Sept.. Looking forward to it especially after reading your intensive tipsxx
Have a great trip. 🙂
According to you Armenia looking awesome to see.
It is a great place. We can not wait to go back and explore more.
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Visit Armenia: The Ultimate Armenia Travel Guide
- The Caucasus
I think that Yerevan, which is built from volcanic tuff and is harmonic like a rose, is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Pablo Neruda
The Land of Apricots
From the Pink City, Yerevan , to the charcoal-and-gold Gyumri ; the emerald Debed Canyon to the sapphire Lake Sevan – Armenia is a country of vivid colours. The smallest of the three Trans-Caucasus nations, it holds its own in terms of history, hiking, food and wine.
Forged in the fires of a tumultuous past, Armenian culture is one of the most fascinating on earth. Every day in Armenia is a brush with history, from the Khachkar cross stones that sit proudly in Yerevan’s city park and mark the way to monasteries across the country, to Armenian cuisine, costume, music, and the alphabet itself.
Travelling around Armenia with snow-capped Mount Ararat as your North Star is truly one of life’s great privileges. This is one country I’ll keep coming back to for the rest of my days.
Armenia travel essentials
Please note: Some of these links are affiliate links, meaning I may earn a commission if you make a purchase by clicking a link (at no extra cost to you). Learn more .
April/May (spring) or September/October. Summer for trekking.
How long in Armenia?
2 full days for Yerevan; 10 days for the highlights; 2-3 weeks to see everything.
35-50 USD per person per day (mid-range hotel; local meals; day tours; museum tickets).
Fly into Yerevan or Gyumri; marshrutka/train from Georgia or Iran.
Visa-free or e-visa (90-180 days) for most passports.
Hire a car; use marshrutka vans and trains.
Where to stay
Hostels, family-run guesthouses or hotels.
Tours & experiences
City walking tours, wine tastings and monasteries.
Where to go in Armenia
The perfect Armenia itinerary starts with a few days in Yerevan , a lively city of outdoor cafes, sculpture gardens and buzzing squares. Watch the lavash ladies at work at the GUM Market , and rifle through carpets and antiques at the Vernissage as you hunt for the perfect Armenian souvenir .
There’s a good chance this will be your first real encounter with the Armenian Genocide – an unspeakable atrocity that much of the world seems to have forgotten. Tsitsernakaberd , the national Genocide Memorial and museum, is a must-visit.
Contrast Yerevan with the nation’s second-largest city, Gyumri , known for its lofty architecture and house museums. Visit Vanadzor in the north and Goris in the south, both gateways to incredible nature. Spend a day on sparkling Lake Sevan , Armenia’s jewel, spend a night at the Soviet-era Sevan Writers’ House , find solitude in Dilijan National Park , home to the country’s best hiking trails.
The world’s first Christian nation, Armenia boasts dozens of monasteries and churches, each one more impressive than the last. Khor Virap , Noravank , Geghard and the mighty Tatev , accessed by soaring cable car, can all be visited on day trips from Yerevan. UNESCO-listed Haghpat and Sanahin are my personal favourites.
Along with neighbouring Georgia, Armenia is the cradle of viniculture, so a wine tasting in the Areni Region should also be on your agenda. The Armenian table is one that has been laid over the course of many centuries. Every city, town and small village offers its own incredible cuisine , making this country a real treat for foodies.
Get to the heart of Armenia with my latest travel guides.
A Night at the Sevan Writers’ House: What It’s Like to Stay at Armenia’s Iconic Soviet Hotel
How to Travel by Overnight Sleeper Train from Tbilisi to Yerevan (or Vice Versa)
10 Things to Do at Lake Sevan in Armenia
30 Awesome Things to Do in Yerevan, Armenia
12 Things to Do in Gyumri, Armenia’s Historic Second City
The Ultimate Armenia Itinerary for 3-10 Days of Travel
My armenia favourites.
The Transcaucasian Trail in Dilijan National Park.
Dolma , lavash and a Ponchik (filled donut) to finish.
Shopping for apricots at the GUM Market in Yerevan.
An Armenian carpet from the Vernissage market.
Nomadic Matt's Travel Site
Travel Better, Cheaper, Longer
Armenia Travel Guide
Last Updated: May 4, 2023
Straddling the divide between Asia and Europe , Armenia might be one of the final travel frontiers left on the planet for adventurous backpackers. Visiting Armenia isn’t often on a traveler’s to-do list, despite its beautiful snowy mountain peaks and many perfectly preserved medieval monasteries.
But their loss is your gain as the country is virtually untouched by mass tourism.
Armenia’s history is complicated and often tragic, marked with countless years of warfare and the infamous Armenian Genocide in which the Ottoman government murdered 1.5 million Armenians in the early 1900s.
Learn more about the country’s past by visiting the many historical monuments and religious structures scattered around the country, including the 4th-century Etchmiadzin Cathedral and the Greco-Roman Temple of Garni.
Armenia’s dramatic landscape of jagged mountains and deep, rugged valleys — especially in the Geghama mountain range — is perfect for trekking, biking, and off-roading.
Moreover, Armenians love chatting with visitors. You don’t have to try hard to meet the locals here as they’re going to want to know why you are visiting since so few people do!
This travel guide to Armenia will help you plan your trip, save money, and make the most of your time in this underrated gem!
Table of Contents
- Things to See and Do
- Typical Costs
- Suggested Budget
- Money-Saving Tips
- Where to Stay
- How to Get Around
- How to Stay Safe
- Best Places to Book Your Trip
- Related Blogs on Armenia
Top 5 Things to See and Do in Armenia
1. See Mount Ararat
This dormant volcano is technically a part of Turkish territory and is believed to be the final resting spot of Noah’s Ark. While you can’t hike the mountain from Armenia, you can certainly admire it up close from the Khor Virap monastery, located just 50 kilometers (31 miles) from Yerevan!
2. Visit Yerevan
Known as Armenia’s “Pink City” for the rose-colored volcanic material used for much of the city’s buildings, Yerevan is home to wide tree-lined boulevards, busy town squares, and a thriving cafe culture. Try the city’s famous dark coffee; it’s rich, sweet, and packed with caffeine.
3. Go Skiing in Tsaghkadzor
Thanks to its mountainous terrain, Armenia has become a hit with extreme sports lovers. During the winter, Armenia is transformed into a ski and snowboarding haven. Tsaghkadzor ski resort in the Marmarik river valley is the most popular place to go. A day ticket costs 12,000 AMD.
4. Visit Dilijan National Park
Dilijan National Park is easily one of the most scenic destinations to visit in Armenia, boasting wide swatches of forested hills and green meadows home to thousands of plant species. Hike the well-marked trails to springs and monasteries or spend some time at scenic Parz Lake.
5. Visit the Genocide Museum
The Armenian Genocide Memorial & Museum stands as a powerful reminder of the genocide that took place in Armenia between 1915-1922 at the hands of the Ottoman Empire. Inside is a collection of photographs, documents, newspaper reports, and films curated to tell the story of this tragic event in Armenian history. Admission is free but donations are welcomed.
Other Things to See and Do in Armenia
1. take the cable car to tatev monastery.
This medieval monastery was built between the 9th-13th centuries and is unique thanks to its position on the edge of a deep gorge. The inside is covered in 10th-century frescoes and vaulted stone ceilings, while the exterior has many pointed domes and is surrounded by tall stone fortress walls that drop off immediately into the gorge below. There are stunning views and photography spots all around the complex as well. The only way to visit the monastery is by taking the cable car across a 5,752-meter cableway (the longest in the world) suspended 320 meters (1,049 feet) above the River Vorotan. The cable car ride takes around 15 minutes, and a round-trip ticket is 5,000 AMD. Tatev is about 3.5 hours from Yerevan.
2. Visit Shikahogh State Reserve
Shikahogh State Reserve is the second largest forest in Armenia and is home to some diverse wildlife including leopards, bears, wild goats, and vipers. There are lush mountain hiking trails (although they are not always well maintained) that lead you to Iron Age tombs, medieval churches and monasteries, waterfalls, crystal-clear springs, and even abandoned towns. The 11-kilometer (7-mile) route from Mount Khustup to Shishkert village is tough but incredibly scenic.
3. Swim in Lake Sevan
Also known as the “Armenian Sea,” Lake Sevan is a massive lake (it covers 5% of the country) located high in the Caucasus mountains. Known for its incredible biodiversity and stunningly stark landscapes, Lake Sevan is a popular destination for domestic and foreign travelers alike. Come here to relax in one of the lakeside villages, visit medieval monasteries, and swim in the lake (if it’s warm enough or you’re brave enough!). The lake is so high in altitude (1,900 meters above sea level) that if you sit on the riverbank, it almost looks like the river is running into the sky. You can wild camp here for free as well. Lake Sevan is around 65 kilometers (40 miles) from Yerevan. The most common way to get here is by marshrutka (minibus), which takes around an hour.
4. See Geghard Monastery
Geghard Monastery is a World Heritage-listed complex named from the lance that pierced Christ’s side at the crucifixion. The buildings are partially carved out of the mountains and surrounded by cliffs along the Azat River Gorge. Inside the 13th-century Avazan Chapel is a sacred spring that runs through the monastery, and the original reason for the founding of the area as a religious site back in the 4th century. Today, visitors fill up bottles to take the holy water home. Admission is free.
5. Visit the Echmiadzin Cathedral
Located only 20 kilometers (12 miles) from Yerevan, no visit to Armenia would be complete without seeing the Echmiadzin Cathedral. The cathedral was built following the country’s adoption of Christianity in 301 CE, making it the first country in the world to do so. The cathedral is the oldest in Armenia and is often cited as the oldest cathedral in the world. The cathedral’s museum has some fascinating artifacts, including a supposed piece of the cross on which Jesus was crucified, the spear that pierced Jesus’ side, and a piece of Noah’s Ark. Admission to the museum is 1,500 AMD.
6. Explore Gyumri
The city of Gyumri is one of Armenia’s most ancient settlements, dating back nearly 3,000 years. Starting from the busy Vardanants Square at the center of town, walk to the Kumayri Historic District, a sort of open-air museum filled with historic buildings like the Sev Ghul fortress and the Paris Hotel (used as a maternity hospital during Soviet times). Be sure to visit the Dzitoghtsyan Museum of Social Life (1,000 AMD entry), which showcases life in the area from the 19th century to the 1920s, or the Aslamazyan Sisters House-Museum (300 AMD entry), with works from two sisters who helped bring equality to Armenian women through their art.
7. Experience the healing waters of Jermuk
With over 40 natural thermal springs, Jermuk is the most popular spa town in Armenia, with a variety of resort hotels and spas (rooms start at 15,000 AMD). Get a free sample of healing mineral water from the Gallery of Water, where natural mineral water flows into 5 different stone urns, each with different healing properties and temperatures (be careful as some are very hot). While you’re there, make sure you venture to the Jermuk waterfall, which, at 70 meters tall (230 feet), is Armenia’s second-largest waterfall. Jermuk is about 3 hours from Yerevan.
8. Visit the Army of Stones
Karahunj, otherwise known as Zorats Karer (or Army of Stones in English), is Armenia’s oldest and most popular megalithic site. Located at an altitude of 1,770 meters (5,800 feet) on a rocky plateau, no one knows how these 200 stones got here. Even stranger is the fact that each stone has 5-centimeter holes in it. There are many different theories on how and why the stones are here, but the most popular theory is that the site was constructed in the 6th century BCE for stargazing.
9. Take a wine tasting tour
With over 500 unique and native varieties almost unknown to the world outside Armenia, taking a wine tour is a must for any wine lover. In fact, the oldest wine cave in the world (it’s 6,000 years old!) is near Areni. Sadly, during Soviet rule, many of the wineries were shut down. It is only in the last decade that Armenia has begun to reconnect with its winemaking roots. Wine tours from Yerevan start from 37,000 AMD for a tour of one winery and go up to around 75,000 AMD for a full-day tour.
10. Go to the Erebuni Historical & Archaeological Museum-Reserve
This archaeological site encapsulates the ancient Erebuni Fortress, which dates to 782 BCE, a whole three decades before Rome was even established, and after which the city of Yerevan was named. The entire complex is now an outdoor museum, with an indoor component as well. The museum contains more than 12,000 artifacts offering insights into Armenia’s ancient history and the establishment of the city of Yerevan. You’ll also learn about what daily life was like in the palace of Argishti I, one of the greatest kings of ancient Urartu. Admission is 1,000 AMD or 2,500 AMD with a guide.
11. See Noravank
Built in the 13th century, legend has it that when the Mongols conquered Armenia hundreds of years ago, it was God himself that saved the Noravank monastery. Delicately carved stonework and religious reliefs (including depictions of God) decorate the three churches here. Unlike the many other Armenian monasteries that are located on top of mountains and gorges, Noravank is set on the floor of a deep valley, with towering red cliffs rising up on either side of the complex. Visiting the site is free, though the museum is 500 AMD. The monastery is around 122 kilometers (76 miles) from Yerevan.
Armenia Travel Costs
Accommodation – There are a limited number of hostels in Armenia and most of them are in the capital, Yerevan. A bed in a 4-6-bed dorm costs 5,000-7,500 AMD, while a bed in an 8-bed-dorm costs 3,000-4,000 AMD. A private double room in a hostel is around 10,000-15,000 AMD with a shared bathroom. Standard amenities include Wi-Fi and bedding. Free breakfast and shared kitchens are common as well (though not all hostels have them).
Camping is available around the country. For those not traveling with a tent, you can often rent them at the Tourist Information Centers. Wild camping is free, but if you prefer camping on a campsite, prices start at around 4,000 AMD per night for two people and a tent.
Budget hotels average around 8,000-9,850 AMD per night. Free Wi-Fi is standard and free breakfast is usually included.
Airbnb is available though the options are limited. Private rooms start around 10,000 AMD per night while entire homes/apartments average closer to 25,000 AMD.
Food – Armenia is a landlocked country with a long history of trade, meaning that Mediterranean, Middle Eastern, and Eastern European countries have all left their mark on the country’s cuisine.
Fresh and dried herbs create flavorful dishes, and common spices include black pepper, sumac, cumin, mint, and cinnamon. Staple vegetables include eggplant, cucumber, bell pepper, tomato, and onion. Legumes, especially chickpeas and lentils, are also used as central ingredients in many dishes. Pork, lamb, and beef are the most common meats. Though meat is predominant in the cuisine, because of the fasting periods in the Armenian Apostolic religion, there are many traditional dishes that are entirely plant-based as well.
Common dishes include a variety of cold salads, yogurt soups, boereg (filled pastry pies), bozbash (lamb stew), khorovats (grilled meat skewers), tolma (stuffed grape leaves), kyufta (a type of meatball), and harissa (a porridge that’s considered Armenia’s national dish). Traditional lavash bread, a flatbread made from wheat and baked in a clay oven, is integral to Armenian cuisine and is served with most meals.
Street food like shawarma or lahmajun (Armenian pizza) costs less than 1,000 AMD, and a glass of tan (a salty yogurt drink) shouldn’t be more than 300 AMD.
For an inexpensive meal at an Armenian restaurant, expect to pay around 1,250-2,750 AMD for traditional food like spa (an extra creamy soup), kyufta (meatballs), or Armenian cheese with basturma (dried meat with spices) wrapped in a piece of Armenian pita bread.
Higher-end or Western restaurants cost about 6,000-8,500 AMD per meal. Even Chinese takeout restaurants, normally a mainstay of the budget traveler, are more expensive than Armenian meals, costing at least 3,800 AMD for a dish.
In terms of drinks, expect to pay 600 AMD for a beer, 700 AMD for a glass of Armenian wine, 1,000-1,500 AMD for a cocktail, 800 AMD for a cup of Armenian coffee, and 1,200 AMD for a cappuccino.
If you plan on cooking your own meals, a week’s worth of groceries should cost around 12,000-16,000 AMD but, with food prices being so low, it’s better to eat street food and enjoy the food the country has to offer!
Backpacking Armenia Suggested Budgets
On a backpacking budget of about 17,500 AMD per day, you can stay in a hostel dorm (or camp), eat street food or at inexpensive restaurants, cook some of your meals, use local transportation (including some intercity buses), limit your drinking, and stick to mostly free or cheap activities like hiking and museum visits.
On a mid-range budget of about 43,000 AMD, you can stay in a private hostel or Airbnb, eat any budget restaurant meal you want, enjoy a few drinks, take some taxis to get around, take intercity trains, and do more paid activities like ride the cable car to Tatev Monastery and do a winery tour.
On a “luxury” budget of about 77,000 AMD per day, you can stay in a hotel, eat anywhere you want, drink more, rent a car to get around, and do whatever tours and activities you want. This is just the ground floor for luxury though. The sky is the limit!
Use the chart below to get an idea of how much you need to budget daily, depending on your travel style. Keep in mind these are daily averages – some days you’ll spend more, some days you’ll spend less (you might pay less every day). We want to give you a general idea of how to make your budget. Prices are in AMD.
Armenia Travel Guide: Money-Saving Tips
Armenia isn’t going to break your bank. There are so many free activities here, especially if you’re enjoying the outdoors, that it’s hard to spend a lot. Throw in cheap food, beer, and accommodation, and you can really stretch your budget here. However, if you’re looking to lower your expenses even more, here are some ways to save money in Armenia:
- Take a free walking tour – Yerevan Free Walking Tour is a great way to get familiar with the city and the culture. Just be sure to tip your guide at the end!
- Hitchhike and wild camp – If you really want to save money in Armenia, it is one of the easiest countries in the world to hitchhike. You will likely never wait long. Wild camping is also legal, and it is very common for friendly Armenians to invite you to their home for food so bring a tent when you visit.
- Cook your own meals – Some hostels here don’t include kitchen facilities, so if you want to save money, make sure you book accommodation that does so you can buy cheap groceries and cook some meals.
- Stay with a local – If you plan ahead, you can usually find a Couchsurfing host that can provide free accommodation and share their insider tips with you. It’s the best way to save money and meet locals.
- Enjoy the free spaces – There are plenty of free parks as well as many free hiking trails around the country. Save your budget and enjoy the outdoors!
- Pack a water bottle – The tap water here isn’t really safe to drink so bring a reusable water bottle with a filter to save money and reduce your reliance on plastic bottles. My preferred bottle is LifeStraw because it has a built-in filter to ensure your water is always clean and safe.
Where to Stay in Armenia
There are very few hostels in Armenia, and the few they have are in Yerevan and Tsaghkadzor. My suggested places to stay are:
- Envoy Hostel (Yerevan)
- MGA Hostel and Tours (Yerevan)
- Kantar Hostel (Yerevan)
- Hostel Tsaghkadzor (Tsaghkadzor)
How to Get Around Armenia
Public transportation – Public transportation isn’t the best in Armenia. The public transport websites aren’t translated into English, so it is much better to ask at your hostels for guidance to help you use the local and intercity buses. In the cities, it is easy to walk from place to place.
Yerevan has five trolley bus routes with a ride costing around 50 AMD. There’s also a subway with one line and ten stations, and public buses. A one-way fare on the bus and subway is around 100 AMD.
If you’re flying into Zvartnots International Airport, you can reach the center of Yerevan by bus or taxi. Aerotaxi is the official airport taxi but be aware drivers often won’t turn on the meter, so you need to negotiate a price, which should be around 3,000 AMD. A bus is around 300 AMD.
Bus – Intercity transport in Armenia is best done by bus and minibus (marshrutka). Intercity buses are relatively inexpensive but navigating the bus stations can be tricky as English isn’t widely spoken. Ask in your hostel the day before for someone to help you work out which bus you need and then you will just have to look for that bus when you arrive at the station.
Bus fares average about 716 AMD per hour of travel, but even a short route can end up taking quite a while with lots of stops.
Trains – There are daily trains connecting Yerevan to Gyumri (3 hours), Yeraskh (1.5 hours), Araks (1 hour), Ararat (1 hour), and Hrazdan (1.5 hours). In the summer months, the Hrazdan line gets extended to Lake Sevan. One-way tickets cost between 3,500-12,500 AMD.
Train tickets to nearby cities outside of Armenia, such as Tbilisi, cost around 9,800-12,000 AMD for a one-way ticket. You can purchase tickets online at the official railway website, Railway.am .
The trains that run most regularly are slow trains that are Soviet-era relics, meaning they are uncomfortable and lack the usual amenities you might expect from trains. The express trains, however, are modern and air-conditioned. Unfortunately, these cost more and run less frequently.
Flying – There are only two international airports in Armenia so although air travel is possible, it is far from cost-effective. Often you don’t save much time due to layovers. A flight from Gyumri to Yerevan starts at 95,000 AMD. Only fly if you are short on time and flush with cash.
Car Rental – Driving is definitely the most convenient way to get around Armenia. Car rentals can sometimes be as low as 12,000 AMD per day, and the more days you book, the better the price. If you’re driving, make sure to get an International Driving Permit (IDP) in advance as you’ll need one for any vehicle rental.
When to Go to Armenia
The best time to visit Armenia is at the beginning or end of summer (May-June or September-October). During these months, the weather is mild, making it perfect for outdoor explorations. The temperature hovers around 20°C (68°F) but be aware that it can be very rainy throughout May and thunderstorms are common.
Summers are hot, with temperatures soaring as high as 35°C (95°F). Things tend to cool down in the evenings, however, with a gentle mountain breeze providing some welcomed relief after a long, hot day.
If you are visiting for skiing, December is the best winter month for hitting the slopes. Temperatures drop below freezing, and the northern regions receive a lot of snowfall. Cities like Yerevan get a lot quieter during these months as everyone hides from the cold.
You don’t have to worry about inflated prices or crowds even during the summer peak season. Armenia isn’t a very touristy destination, and you often have whole sites all to yourself.
How to Stay Safe in Armenia
Armenia is a very safe country to travel around — even if you’re traveling solo, and even as a solo female traveler. Violent crime here is rare.
There aren’t any specific scams to look out for either, though sometimes taxi drivers will try to overcharge you. You can avoid this by agreeing on a price before entering the taxi (ask your hotel/hostel staff for a price estimate if you’re not sure what to pay).
If you’re worried about getting ripped off you can read about common travel scams to avoid here .
Petty theft and pickpocketing are rare but can occur so always keep your valuables (specifically your wallet and phone) secure and out of reach. This is especially important in crowds or on busy public transportation.
Solo female travelers should feel safe here, though the standard precautions apply (never accept drinks from strangers, don’t leave your drink unattended at the bar, don’t walk around intoxicated at night, etc.).
If you rent a vehicle, don’t leave any valuables in it overnight. Break-ins are rare, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry.
There’s often political turmoil with neighbors so keep an eye out on that and avoid protests or demonstrations while in Armenia. Avoid the Nagorno-Karabakh region on the border with Azerbaijan due to armed conflict.
If you do experience an emergency, dial 112 for assistance.
Always trust your gut instinct. Make copies of your personal documents, including your passport and ID. Forward your itinerary along to loved ones so they’ll know where you are.
The most important piece of advice I can offer is to purchase good travel insurance. Travel insurance will protect you against illness, injury, theft, and cancellations. It’s comprehensive protection in case anything goes wrong. I never go on a trip without it as I’ve had to use it many times in the past. You can use the widget below to find the policy right for you:
Armenia Travel Guide: The Best Booking Resources
These are my favorite companies to use when I travel. They consistently have the best deals, offer world-class customer service and great value, and overall, are better than their competitors. They are the companies I use the most and are always the starting point in my search for travel deals.
- Skyscanner – Skyscanner is my favorite flight search engine. They search small websites and budget airlines that larger search sites tend to miss. They are hands down the number one place to start.
- Hostelworld – This is the best hostel accommodation site out there with the largest inventory, best search interface, and widest availability.
- Booking.com – The best all around booking site that constantly provides the cheapest and lowest rates. They have the widest selection of budget accommodation. In all my tests, they’ve always had the cheapest rates out of all the booking websites.
- HostelPass – This new card gives you up to 20% off hostels throughout Europe. It’s a great way to save money. They’re constantly adding new hostels too. I’ve always wanted something like this and glad it finallt exists.
- Get Your Guide – Get Your Guide is a huge online marketplace for tours and excursions. They have tons of tour options available in cities all around the world, including everything from cooking classes, walking tours, street art lessons, and more!
- The Man in Seat 61 – This website is the ultimate guide to train travel anywhere in the world. They have the most comprehensive information on routes, times, prices, and train conditions. If you are planning a long train journey or some epic train trip, consult this site.
- Rome2Rio – This website allows you to see how to get from point A to point B the best and cheapest way possible. It will give you all the bus, train, plane, or boat routes that can get you there as well as how much they cost.
- FlixBus – Flixbus has routes between 20 European countries with prices starting as low 5 EUR! Their buses include WiFi, electrical outlets, a free checked bag.
- SafetyWing – Safety Wing offers convenient and affordable plans tailored to digital nomads and long-term travelers. They have cheap monthly plans, great customer service, and an easy-to-use claims process that makes it perfect for those on the road.
- LifeStraw – My go-to company for reusable water bottles with built-in filters so you can ensure your drinking water is always clean and safe.
- Unbound Merino – They make lightweight, durable, easy-to-clean travel clothing.
- Top Travel Credit Cards – Points are the best way to cut down travel expenses. Here’s my favorite point earning credit cards so you can get free travel!
Armenia Travel Guide: Related Articles
Want more info? Check out all the articles I’ve written on backpacking/traveling Armenia and continue planning your trip:
19 Easy Ways to Save Money in Armenia
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- Where To Stay
- Booking Resources
- Related Blogs
The Ultimate Armenia Travel Guide // An Essential Break Down
In an era where a single Google search will pull up thousands of blog posts and magazine worthy photos for any given destination, I was surprised at how few Armenia travel tips and guides I could find online. This posed a unique situation where we actually had to jump in feet first and really explore for ourselves. We divided the country in thirds, rented a car, and just drove. Of course, there was some trial and error, but this was one of the most exciting trips I’ve taken in a while.
In this complete Armenia travel guide, pick up some of the helpful tips we learned along our journey, discover the best time to visit, get an idea of how much things cost, what foods you have to try, plus much more.
BASIC ARMENIA TRAVEL INFORMATION
The ideal time for Armenia travel is late May to early June, or late September to early October.
RAINFALL November is the wettest month. March and April historically have a good amount of rain but the weather was beautiful (with no rain) when we were there in late March. HOTTEST/COLDEST MONTHS The hottest months are July and August, with highs in the 90’sF (around 35C). The coldest months are December to February, with highs in January topping 2F ( 35C) and lows dipping down to 19F (-7C). DAYLIGHT HOURS June and July have the longest amount daylight (around 13 hours), with December through February offering up only 7 hours of daylight each day.
Whether or not you need a visa to enter Armenia will depend on your passport.
- All European Union citizens as well as citizens of the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom do not need a visa prior to arrival.
- Canadian citizens do require a visa but can obtain it upon arrival for 15,000AMD ($30CAD).
- Citizens of Africa (except South Africa) cannot obtain a visa upon arrival . They can only apply at an Armenian diplomatic or consular post, and only with an invitation.
To view the visa requirements for all countries, click here.
CURRENCY Armenia operates on the Armenian Dram. Credit cards are widely accepted in the city and ATMs are relatively easy to find.
$1 USD = 487AMD $1 AUD = 367AMD $1 CAD = 381AMD £1 = 580AMD €1 = 658 AMD For current exchange rates, or if your country is not listed above click here.
RESTAURANTS I had a difficult time finding an accurate Armenia travel guide regarding tipping. From what I understand, tipping is common in Yerevan restaurants. My Armenian friend Val (who I’m so grateful to for all of her tips) says that there is no minimum and no expectation, however it’s “greatly appreciated regardless of the percentage.” So anywhere from 5% (on small bills) to 10-20% for restaurants with great service. TAXIS When taking a taxi, you can round up on the fare. HOTELS Nick was in Armenia for business so we were lucky to get the opportunity to stay at the Multi Grand Hotel. When ordering room service, we attempted to tip several times and our efforts were denied.
220V / 50 Hz
The most comment power socket in Armenia is Type C – Non Grounded. You might also run into Type F – Grounded. (We brought only a Type C converter and had no issues).
WiFi is readily available (fast and free!) in Yerevan, and you’ll find it in every restaurant, hotel and coffee shop. Outside of the city, WiFi is a little harder to come by, but we didn’t have a problem finding some when we really needed it.
WHAT THINGS COST
One of the best things about Armenia is how inexpensive it is. Typically, things will cost more in Yerevan and much less in the rest of the country. During our road trip to the North, we stopped by a market to pick up some snacks. We bought homemade bread bigger than both of our faces combined, 2 beers, 2 baklava desserts and some sheep’s cheese for a grand total of less than $6 USD. Here are some approximate Armenia travel expenses to give you an idea of how to budget your trip.
FOOD Inexpensive meal: 1,500 to 3,000AMD ($3-6USD) Dinner for 2 (appetizers, meals + drinks): 10,000-15,000AMD ($20-30)
HOTELS Hostels 4,800-9,700AMD ($10-20USD) Mid-Range 25,000-60,000 ($50-$120USD) Luxury: 85,000-150,000AMD ($175-300 USD)
DRINKS Cappuccino 600-1,400AMD ($1.20-2.75USD) Domestic Beer -Restaurant: 1,058AMD ($2) Domestic Beer – Grocery Store: 380AMD ($0.76USD) Wine – Restaurant: 700-800AMD ($1.5-$2USD) Bottle of Wine – Grocery Store: 1450AMD ($3USD) Cocktails: 2,432 ($5USD)
TRANSPORTATION Taxis meters start at 600AMD ($1.20USD) and cost 160.93 per mile ($0.33USD). Bus Tickets are 100AMD ($0.20USD)
WHAT TO EAT AND DRINK
Armenia’s food won me over.. big time. Just about every traditional restaurant has a massive menu with tons of options, so it can get a little overwhelming if you’re not familiar with the cuisine. Here is a list of some of the most popular and traditional Armenian dishes that you have to try.
BASTURMA is a highly seasoned, air-dried cured beef, and it’s a common appetizer in Armenia. We were served basturma as part of the cold plate during several of our breakfasts. My friend Val recommends trying it in an omelet. KHOROVADZ is Armenian barbecue, and it’s one of the most typical foods you’ll find in Armenia. Pork is the most common meat, but you can also order chicken, lamb, beef and fish BBQ. If you don’t eat meat, there are tons of vegetable barbecue options. I fell in love with the the mushroom BBQ and ordered it at every meal. DOLMA is a traditional Armenian dish made of grape leaves, ground beef, rice, plus herbs and spices. Dolma can also be ordered without meat.
BUREG (also known as Borek or Borag) is a staple in Armenian food. It’s a baked pastry made with thin flakey dough and filled with cheese. LAVASH is a thin unleavened flatbread.. and you cannot leave Armenia without trying it. Not to worry though because if you forget to order it, the waiter will always remind you. At Lavash and Sherep restaurants in Yerevan, you can watch the lavash making process which only adds to the level of appreciation you will have for it once it hits your table. BRANDY (COGNAC) Armenian Brandy is considered to be some of the best in the world and for a short period of time, they were even allowed the prestigious honor of calling their product “cognac.” Armenian brandy was most famously known as the drink of choice for Winston Churchill and they boast gold medals in spirits competitions around the world.
RELATED POST : THE BEST YEREVAN RESTAURANTS // WHERE TO EAT IN ARMENIA’S CAPITAL
10 ARMENIA TRAVEL TIPS TO MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR VACATION
ASK TAXIS TO USE THEIR METER During our time in Yerevan, the only taxi drivers who voluntarily turned on their meter without us having to ask were the ones who were called by our hotel. If the meter does not get not turned on, the driver will quote you his own price at the end of the ride. A few times we forgot to ask about the meter, and the fare was triple what it normally was. We didn’t argue about it as it was only a few dollars difference, but I still hate getting up-charged for being a tourist.
TAXI DRIVERS Speaking of taxi drivers.. very few spoke English. I recommend having the name of your destination written in Armenian so that they understand where you want to go (you can ask your hotel to help you). When we wanted to go to the Ararat Brandy Factory, our driver thought we asked him to take us to Mt. Ararat… in Turkey. Another time, on the the way back to our hotel, we had to pull up our Google Maps and navigate for him using hand signals. Luckily, they were all very sweet and willing to work with our lack of knowledge about the local language.
PAY ATTENTION TO SPEED LIMITS If you will be renting a car in Armenia, make sure to follow the speed limits! There are speed camera everywhere and we not only got pulled over, but we saw dozens of others fall prey to the cameras each day.
- In towns, villages and cities– 60 km/h
- Outside of towns, villages and cities – 90 km/h
- On highways– 110 km/h
- Residential areas – 20 km/h
For a huge list of tips about driving in Armenia, including what to expect if you get pulled over, check out my post below:
RELATED POST: ARMENIAN TRAVEL TIPS: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT RENTING A CAR
CREDIT CARDS In the US, our credit cards don’t usually have pin codes. Apparently this is not the norm and we inadvertently caused extreme confusion when we didn’t have a pin to enter during credit card purchases. A few people assured us that they wouldn’t steal our money ( they must’ve though that didn’t want to give them the code for security reasons haha). To their surprise, the sale did eventually go through, but it took about 30 seconds.
FREE PHONE CHARGING IN YEREVAN If you find yourself running out of phone battery in Yerevan, head towards the Cascade Complex. There’s an open air bus/tourist information center parked out front with free phone charing.
CHECK OUT THE GROCERY STORE Walking through foreign grocery stores is one of my favorite things to do when I travel, and it was even more fun in Armenia because everything is cheap. While beer in your hotel mini bar might seem inexpensive ($2-3USD), you can find it in the grocery store for less than $1USD! Also stock up on fresh bread, homemade cheese and Armenian snacks.
HOW TO TIP Unlike in the US, you tip when paying your bill. If you are paying by card, let the server know how much extra to add to the bill. If you’re paying with cash, hand the tip over with your total.
SAFETY & SOLO FEMALE TRAVEL Armenia is extremely safe and I would definitely feel comfortable returning here as a solo (female) traveler. They have a very low crime rate even in their biggest city, Yerevan.
If you don’t know anything about Armenia, you might look at where it’s located on a map, and group it in with high-risk countries such as Iraq and Afghanistan. However, Armenia is rated “low-risk” on the Global Terrorism Index at #75 (for reference, the US sits much higher at #32). Also, the United States Government rates Armenia as “Level 1” – the lowest advisory level for safety and security risk.
Even though Armenia is safe, it’s advised to stay clear of the Azerbaijan border as relations between the two countries remains hostile. And as with any place you travel, always stay conscious of your surroundings.
TALK TO THE PEOPLE I’ve never been looked at as strangely as I have in Armenia. We would drive through these tiny towns on our road trip throughout the country and people would not drop their gaze. At first I was a little uncomfortable but then I realized, they just don’t see that many tourists.
We started initiating contact first, and quickly discovered that the Armenian people are SO friendly. One of our taxi drivers called his daughter on speakerphone because she spoke better English than him, and he wanted us to talk to her. If we had a problem, people would go out of their way to help us.. like the time we got lost and a very nice man drew directions for us in the dirt. If you find yourself traveling in Armenia, I highly recommend trying to make a connection with the people. They played a big role in my fondness for this country.
ARMENIA TRAVEL HIGHLIGHTS // WHERE TO GO
DILIJAN A town in Northern Armenia also known as “Little Switzerland” because of it’s dense forests and snowcapped mountains. Dilijan is a good jumping off point for Haghartsin and Goshavank Monasteries.
HAGHARTSIN MONASTERY A 13th century monastery located in the Tavush province. Haghartsin is one of the most visited monasteries in Armenia and is known for it’s incredible location tucked amongst the trees, on the top of a hill.
RELATED POST: HAGHARTSTIN MONASTERY // ARMENIA’S HIDDEN MOUNTAIN GEM
LORI PROVINCE One of the most beautiful provinces in Armenia. It includes towns such as Stepanavan, Alaverdi and Spitak. In Lori Province you can visit the Lori Berd Fortress, Haghpat Monastery and Sanahin Monastery.
RELATED POST: AVAN DZORAGET HOTEL // A PEACEFUL RETREAT IN LORI PROVINCE
LAKE SEVAN The largest body of water in Armenia and one of the highest altitude lakes in the world. Lake Sevan is a popular Armenia travel getaway for those looking to escape the Summer heat and relax on some sandy beaches. Also be sure to visit Sevanavank Monastery, located right on the shore of the Lake.
GOSHAVANK Located 15km from Dilijan, Goshavank is a 12th century monastery that used to be one of the leading spiritual and educational-cultural centers of medieval Armenia.
JERMUK A mountain spa town located in the Vayots Dzor Province of Southern Armenia. Most of the country’s mineral water comes from here and it’s a popular destination for those seeking out mineral spa treatments and hot springs.
ARENI Armenia’s wine region which was said to have been founded by Noah and his sons (from the Christian Bible). The world’s oldest winery was discovered here in the Areni-1 cave, which you can tour.
As you drive through the village, you’ll pass dozens of stands with vendors selling homemade wine out of old water jugs and coke bottles. Or you can visit Hin Areni winery for a tour and tasting. We ended up buying 4 bottles of Hin Areni wine (including their reserve) and it cost less than $30USD.
NORAVANK MONASTERY A 13th century monastery located within a deep gorge created by the Amaghu River. Noravank is definitely worth visiting because the scenery is breathtaking. You can combine your visit with a stop in Areni as it’s only 10km (6 miles) apart.
RELATED POST: NORAVANK MONASTERY // A MUST VISIT SITE IN SOUTHERN ARMENIA
TATEV MONASTERY I highly regret not making it to this monastery. It was a little too far away to turn into a day trip, and we just ran out of time. Tatev Monastery’s location looks breathtakingly gorgeous, situated on a basalt plateau in the Syunik Province. To reach the monastery, you have to travel on the world’s longest cable car, the Wings of Tatev.
Google it. Trust me.
KHOR VIRAP Armenia’s most visited pilgrimage site. Khor Virap is said to have been the site where Saint Gregory the Illuminator was imprisoned for 13 years before successfully converting King Trdat to Christianity, thus making Armenia the world’s first Christian nation. In addition to it’s religious significance, Khor Virap also offers one of the best views of Mount Ararat (granted that it’s not covered by the clouds … like when we visited 🙁 ).
GEGHARD MONASTERY Located in the Kotayak Province, Geghard Monastery was founded in the 4th century by Saint Gregory the Illuminator. It’s partially carved out of the mountain stone and is named after the spear that wounded Jesus during his crucifixion. The spear is said to have been housed here until it was moved to Armenia’s Ejmiatsin Cathedral.
TSAKHKADZOR Located in the Kotayak Province, Tsakhkadzor is a popular ski resort town only only one hour from Yerevan. Kecharis Monastery and Makravank Monastery are nearby.
YEREVAN Armenia’s capital and the largest city in the country. Yerevan is also known as The Pink City because it’s buildings are made out of pink lava stone.
RELATED POST: 6 THINGS TO DO IN YEREVAN, ARMENIA
ARMENIA TRAVEL GUIDE // WHAT TO WEAR
Despite being sandwiched between Muslim countries, Armenia is a Christian nation so there is no specific dress code to adhere to. Still, it appeared to be somewhat conservative as far as clothing goes, so airing on the side of modesty will help you fit in.
The women in Yerevan had great style; I’d describe it as casual chic with some funky touches here and there. I noticed a lot of blacks and neutrals, with subtle pops of color, cool shoes and of course, designer bags.
The climate changes throughout the country, so packing Armenia travel outfits with a few different layers is recommended. Even in the hot Summer, nights can get a little chilly.
BISHOP + YOUNG TANK | JUNK FOOD GRAPHIC TEE | TOPSHOP STRIPED TEE | FRAME HIGH RISE SKINNY JEANS | TOPSHOP DENIM SKIRT | J.CREW CROP PANTS | TOPSHOP CROPPED STRIPED JUMPSUIT | T ORY BURCH FLATS | SAM EDELMAN MULE | GUCCI PURSE | FRANK & EILEEN CARDIGAN
Did I miss anything? Leave any of your Armenia travel tips in the comments!
Pin it // the ultimate armenia travel guide.
5 thoughts on “The Ultimate Armenia Travel Guide // An Essential Break Down”
What a great post! I totally agree with you, I very rarely see posts about Armenia and think you’ve done a great job of introducing me to the country, it sounds lovely 🙂
Hi Helena, Thank you so much!! Armenia was such a cool country, I hope you make it over there soon 🙂
We are 4 pax planning to visit armenia in mid october (total 7 days travel plan for ) from dubai. travel date oct 14 .
Request to provide a rough itinerary so that we could cover important tourist spots in important towns.
We are nature lovers..then we wish to experience fall season,snow & a daytime .We have to book accommodations at various places as per the itinerary.
Hi Minji! I’ve written several posts about Armenia which can hopefully give you some ideas for your trip. https://hellojetlag.com/category/armenia/
I recommend consulting with a travel agent for a more personalized itinerary as they will be able to give you more suggestions beyond what I saw during my trip.
Hope this helps! Lindsey
I have been dreaming on traveling Armenia from long time back. Great sharing of the needed information.
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Armenia Travel Guide
Updated September 2023, The Armenia Travel Guide was originally written in August 2018
Straddling Europe and Asia in the South Caucuses, Armenia is a real treat for those that venture into its borders. Without much thought and no planning, I hopped on a marshrutka in Tbilisi bound for Yerevan, not expecting Armenia to become an instant favorite. Really all I had known about Armenia prior to visiting was the Armenian genocide, that the country was a part of the USSR, Armenian Orthodoxy, that I liked the way their curly alphabet looked, and that System of a Down’s members are all of Armenian descent.
Obviously, I knew there was going to be a little more to it than that, and I was pleasantly surprised. Come here to explore monasteries, mountain scenes, and a little-visited breakaway region.
But Armenia has a long tumultuous history. From the 16th-19th centuries, Armenia was jostled between the Ottoman Empire and the Iranian Empire. In the 19th century, the Russians had come to control eastern Armenia, while the west was still under Ottoman control.
Between 1915 and 1923 1.5 million Armenians were exterminated or expelled during the Armenian Genocide at the hands of the Ottoman Empire. Turkey still refuses to recognize this atrocity as genocide.
Eventually, Armenia would become a founding state within the USSR as the Transcaucasian SSR and eventually the Armenian SSR. In 1991 Armenia gained independence.
At the time of independence, Armenia was already involved in the Karabakh War backing the Armenian ethnic majority of Artsakh (then Nagorno-Karabakh) against Azeri forces.
Though, it wasn’t until 1992 that the conflict went full-scale war in the mountainous region. Azerbaijan put a halt to train and air transit to Armenia, effectively crippling the economy. Turkey quickly followed suit.
By 1994 a Russian cease-fire was signed, though the situation remains unresolved. Artsakh is a de facto independent state, not recognized as its own country internationally, but as a part of Azerbaijan. The only access point to Artsakh at this point in time is via Armenia, but you should visit Azerbaijan first as Azerbaijan will recognize your visit to Artsakh as having entered Azeri territories illegally.
In 2018 Armenia underwent a revolution. As this was only a few months after I first visited Armenia, I had first heard about it through Armenian friends I’d made and followed it after.
Serzh Sargsyan, who had served two terms as president of Armenia from 2008-2018 at the end of his second term he announced he would step in as the prime minister of Armenia. Armenians recognized this power grab (likely after they’ve watched the tendency for forever-presidency among other post-Soviet nations) and took to the streets of Yerevan in protest after the detainment of opposition leader Nikol Pashinyan. 11 days of non-violent protests and civil disobedience ensued before Sargsyan resigned.
Armenia and its people remain resilient after its turbulent recent history. But because of this turbulence, Armenia is still in its early days of tourism. Which is not a bad statement, however, travel in Armenia might be a little daunting for less experienced travelers.
In this Armenia travel guide, you’ll find all the information you need to plan the perfect trip.
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Currency : The Dram is the currency used in Armenia. The current exchange rate in September 2023 is $1 USD = 386 AMD .
Language : Armenian is the official language. Russian is still widely understood as Armenia was a republic of the Soviet Union. English is becoming more and more popular with the younger generations.
There are dialects of Armenian spoken and minority languages such as Kurmanji ( Kurdish ), Assyrian, and Greek in the country as well. I was able to get by easily in English and Russian (though I did make attempts at learning Armenian phrases, and butchered it massively!).
Religion : Armenian Orthodox
What To Wear : Armenians dress like most Europeans. Women’s hair should be covered and long skirts worn when entering churches ( many times there’s a bin of loner scarves and tie-on skirts near the entrance ).
How Long To Visit Armenia : One nice thing is that Armenia is a smaller country in size. You can hit most the highlights within a week and won’t be bored if you extend a trip to two weeks or more.
When To Visit Armenia : Late June through August is very hot in Armenia as it’s summertime. May, early June, September, and early October are great times to visit with pleasant temperatures. Winter in Armenia is beautiful, but dress warm.
Get In : You’ll enter Armenia by road or by air.
By flight: Yerevan Airport has direct connections with cities in Europe and the Middle East. Shop flights to Yerevan here .
By road: Armenia borders Georgia, Iran, Azerbaijan, and Turkey. Entering from Turkey and Azerbaijan is impossible. There are border crossings with Georgia and Iran. Note: You can only enter Nagorno-Karabakh from Armenia.
Visas : Many countries can visit Armenia visa-free for 90-180 days or by visa on arrival and e-visa.
Get Around : The best way to get around Armenia is by renting a car or joining day tours as many of the sites you’ll want to reach are a pain to reach by public transport. Marshrutka and buses connect most cities and larger towns, but reaching more remote areas are difficult to non-existent by marshrutka and bus. Hitchhiking is possible and usually safe.
*I have included information on Nagorno-Karabakh (newly renamed the Republic of Artsakh) because Nagorno-Karabakh can only be accessed from Armenia.
Food and wine is a highlight of traveling Armenia. Most food is fresh and locally grown. Things to try are:
Lavash : A very thin, very giant flatbread that is served with everything in Armenia. Lavash also make great food transport: I watched a shop in Stepanakert wrap a full-size rotisserie chicken in one and hand it to a customer.
Khatchupuri : A delicious cheese bread that’s also served up in neighboring Georgia .
Armenian String Cheese : Salty, stringy white cheese typically made from sheep’s milk. It can be made of goat or cow milk as well.
Harissa : A creamy porridge usually of wheat and meat mixed together.
Dried Fish : Fish is a common dish in Armenia, even though it’s a landlocked country. Trout is a common fish eaten.
Dzhash : An Armenian soup of vegetables, spices, and meat or a legume.
Kabob : Meat skewers you’ll find dished up all over the country.
- Explore Monasteries
- Trekking & Camping
- Visit A Country That Doesn’t Exist
- Take a road trip. Check out my 3 day Armenia & Nagorno-Karabakh road trip itinerary here
Where To Go In Armenia
The capital of Armenia and biggest city. Make sure to check out the Yerevan Cascade, Republic Square, Tsitsernakaberd, and Matanedarin… just to name a few!
Where To Sleep In Yerevan
Hostel Vagary | Booking.com | Hotels.com | Agoda.com |
Art Guesthouse Yerevan | Booking.com | Agoda.com |
Golden Palace Boutique Hotel | Booking.com | Hotels.com |
See the best of what Yerevan has to offer in this Yerevan City Tour
The religious center of Armenia. Come here to visit the Echmiadzin Cathedral, which is often regarded as the oldest cathedral in the world. Other sites include S. Hripsime Cathedral and S. Gayane Church.
Where To Sleep In Echmiadzin
Machanents Guesthouse | Booking.com | Hotels.com | Agoda.com |
Explore Echmiadzin and Zvarnots by tour from Yerevan
The largest lake in Armenia, located at 2,000m. Laze on the beaches in summer and visit its monasteries.
Hayranivank : Monastery and largest khachkar cemetery in the world.
Sevanavank : A lovely monastery perched above the shores of Lake Sevan.
Where To Sleep In Sevan
Lake Sevan Hostel | Booking.com | Agoda.com |
Mountain Lake Villa B&B | Booking.com | Hotels.com | Agoda.com |
Lavash Hotel | Booking.com | Hotels.com | Agoda.com |
Lake Sevan Tours
From food tours, to sailing, to sightseeing there’s a tour to suit just about any interest around Lake Sevan
If you want to see the biodiversity of the Caucasus, Khosrov is where to go. Home to 1/3 of the flora in the Caucasus region. Horseback riding and hiking are the best way to explore this massive forest. Don’t forget to visit the Temple of Garni, and Kakavaberd Fortress. Khosrov makes a great day trip from Yerevan as it’s only 20km west of the city.
Explore Armenia’s lush green hills, monasteries and villages in this region. Home to the city of Dilijan, often called “Little Switzerland”. Areas in the northeast along the Azerbaijani border are still landmined from the war, do not explore this area without a knowledgeable guide that knows the area well.
Where To Sleep In Dilijan
Eco House & Camp | Booking.com | Agoda.com |
Gokor B&B | Booking.com | Agoda.com |
Hotel Dilijan Resort | Booking.com | Agoda.com |
You can easily visit the Tavush Region by day trip from Yerevan as well as by a 2 night camping tour
Dilijan is a lovely area to get out into the Armenian nature and mountains. With heaps of hikes to ancient monasteries, beautiful lakes, mountain summits, and more, Dilijan is a nature lover’s dream.
Read: Dilijan National Park & Travel Guide | How to get to Dilijan from Yerevan | The Tripeak Hike
An epicenter of Armenian culture and history. You will likely pass through the canyon on the way down or headed to Georgia as the main road connection passes through Dabed Canyon. This is a great place to explore if you’re not yet suffering from monastery fatigue as it’s littered with them.
Where To Sleep In Alaverdi
Parisis B&B Alaverdi | Booking.com | Agoda.com |
Palma | Booking.com | Hotels.com | Agoda.com |
You can find day tours from Yerevan to Dabed Canyon sights including Sanahin & Haghpat Monasteries, Lori Fortress, and the Alphabet Monument
Looking for ideas for things to do in neighboring Georgia? Don’t miss the Rkoni Monastery Complex
The main draw for those coming to Tatev is the Tatev Monastery. You can take a tram, the Wings of Tatev, to reach the monastery from the town of Halizdor. 4,000 AMD rt/3,000 AMD one way, an additional 2,000 AMD for an audio guide.
Where To Sleep In Halidzor
Harsnadzor Eco Resort | Booking.com | Hotels.com | Agoda.com |
Wings of Tatev Guesthouse | Booking.com | Agoda.com |
Where To Sleep In Tatev
Saro’s B&B Tatev | Booking.com | Agoda.com |
Aida’s B&B | Booking.com | Agoda.com |
There are day tours that visit Tatev and other sights in Armenia’s south from Yerevan as well as from Goris
A small city in Armenia with a cemetery fringed by interesting rockforms and caves scattered up a rolling hillside. Goris is a great place to base yourself for exploring southern Armenia at a slower pace.
Where To Sleep In Goris
Lovely Goris | Booking.com | Agoda.com |
Zanger Hotel | Booking.com | Hotels.com | Agoda.com |
Hotel Mirhav | Booking.com | Hotels.com | Agoda.com |
A monastery in the Ararat Plain with stunning views of Mt. Ararat and one of the most recognizable photographed locations in Armenia. Easily visited from Yerevan.
Khor Virap is a common stop on group tours from Yerevan including Noravank & Areni Winery . Private tours to Khor Virap from Yerevan are on offer as well
A 13th century monastery on the Amaghu River. A common stop on many day tours to the south of Armenia.
Where To Sleep In Yeghegnadzor
Karine B&B | Booking.com | Agoda.com |
Guesthouse Nataly | Booking.com | Agoda.com |
Greenstone B&B | Booking.com | Agoda.com |
Check out this Southern Armenia day tour from Yerevan that includes Noravank as well as a number of other great stops
A rural Armenian village with a swinging bridge across a massive gorge. The bridge connects the two sides of the village on either side of the gorge. On the other side, you’ll find a monastery, ruins, caves, walnut trees, and usually a friendly local or two.
The best base for exploring the Khndzoresk area is from Goris. Khndzoresk is also known for its hoodoo rock formations similar to some in Cappadocia, Kandovan (Iran), and Goblin Valley (Utah).
Check out this day tour from Yerevan including Khndzoresk Bridge, Tatev & Karahunj, or this day trip from Goris to Khndzoresk
The newly renamed Republic of Artsakh ( formerly Nagorno-Karabakh ) is a region claimed by Azerbaijan, but only accessible from Armenia. You can explore the area independently or by tour. Unfortunately, travel in Artsakh isn’t exactly possible in 2021, and much damage has been caused to a number of the following destinations.
Read my 3 Day Nagorno-Karabakh Road Trip to start planning your own visit
Explore Nagorno-Karabakh by a 3 day/2 night tour from Yerevan , or see the best of Armenia & Nagorno-Karabakh on an 8 day tour , or a 10 day tour
The capital of the Nagorno-Karabakh ( recently renamed Republic of Artsakh ). Easily walkable, with plenty of restaurants and shops. After you cross the border into Artsakh you’ll be instructed by the border officers to go to Stepanakert to get your visa. Head to the fringes of the city to see the iconic Tatik-Papik Monument.
Visas are now given free of charge at the border with Armenia. Should you need it, the MFA address in Stepanakert is 28 Azatamartikneri Street and phone number: +374 47941418 .
Visas used to cost 3,000 AMD for most nationalities for a 21 day tourist visa. They will just hand you the visa, ( good to ask them to not put it in your passport, just in case ). If you have evidence in your passport of visiting Artsakh/Nagorno-Karabakh and try to go to Azerbaijan later you will be denied entry, or possibly thrown in jail.
Where To Sleep In Stepanakert
There aren’t too many hotels in Stepanakert. Armenia Hotel and Hotel Europe are a couple of options. You can shop a full list of Stepanakert accommodations here .
Explore Stepanakert & Shusha by day trip from Goris
A fortified city mostly destroyed during the Nagorno-Karabakh War of the 1990’s. Make sure to check out the Ghazanchetsots Cathedral. You can hike the Janapur Trail from Shusha that will take you into Hunyot Canyon, Zontik Falls, and beyond.
Explore Shusha & Stepanakert by day trip from Goris
Located in Hunyot Canyon. Once to the trailhead it’s about a 20 minute walk along a trail to the fairytale like waterfall. This is my absolute favorite waterfall in the world.
A town near Sarsang Reservoir. Martakert was on the front lines of fighting between Azeri and Armenian forces.
Where To Sleep In Martakert
Much like the rest of Nagorno-Karabakh, accommodation options are small. Shop Martakert accommodations here .
A large lake not for from Martakert in the countryside. Great for camping and stargazing.
A ghost town nicknamed the “Hiroshima of Azerbaijan”. The city was destroyed during the Nagorno-Karabakh War. The few that come to Aghdam come to see the ruins and old mosque.
Nagorno-Karabakh officials advise not to visit given that Aghdam is right on the border with Azerbaijan. Aghdam usually is off-limits to tourists, so if the military does turn you around, act as if you got lost. Note that this is more of a ‘dark tourism’ attraction and is not for everyone.
Aghdam is about 30 minutes by taxi from Stepanakert. You can usually hire a taxi for a trip out here from Stepanakert for about 8,000 AMD
A small village north of Stepanakert. The main draw is to hike to the Gandzasar Monastery. The hike takes about 1 hour and gives panoramic views of Vank and the surrounding mountain range.
Armenia is a paradise for hikers with plenty of mountains, rolling hills, canyons, and forests.
- Mount Adzhadak
- Janapur Trail
- Mount Khustup
- Lori Canyon
- Mount Aragats
- Gandzasar Monastery
- Mulberry Festival
- Vartavar Festival
- Carpet Festival
- BBQ Art & Music Festival
- Gata Festival
- Areni Wine Festival
- Honey & Bee Festival
There are plenty of tours offered in Armenia from day trips that will bring you back to Yerevan every evening to multi-day trips around the country. Shop Armenian tours here .
One of the many reasons why Armenia is awesome is because it’s such an inexpensive destination. Of course the sky is the limit, but my trip in Armenia cost me so little I couldn’t believe it. I paid the equivalent of $4 for a night in a very nice and centrally located hostel in Yerevan and pennies for veggies at a shop in Stepanakert.
7,250 AMD/$15 USD Per Day
Staying in hostels & camping while in the countryside, preparing your own meals, travel by marshrutka
14,500 AMD/$30 USD Per Day
Staying in double rooms, eating at cafes, traveling by marshrutka and taking some day tours
30,000 AMD/$60 USD + Per Day
Staying in luxurious rooms, dining at finer restaurants, traveling by private car hire and taking tours around the country
You won’t need to pack anything special with you to Armenia that you wouldn’t pack to most destinations in Europe. I’d recommend picking up a copy of Bradt’s Armenia guidebook to aid in planning your visit. If you plan to camp and/or trek you may want to bring the following:
- 3 Season tent
- Sleeping bag
- Hiking Boots
- Lightweight cooking camp set
- Water Purifier
- Hydration Reservoir
- Trekking Poles
- Rain jacket & Rain pants
- Inreach Explorer+
- Solar Charger & External battery pack
- Medications & Toiletries
Many accommodations in Armenia will offer wifi and it’s easy and cheap to buy sim cards from Ucom, Vivacell, and Beeline. In Nagorno-Karabakh, wifi isn’t very fast and the only Armenian sim card that will work is Vivacell. Nagorno-Karabakh does have its own carrier called Karabakh Telecom and you can purchase sims in Stepanakert.
Overall Armenia is a safe country. Use usual precautions as you would anywhere in the world and you’ll likely be fine. There are areas in the northeast along the Azerbaijan border and in Nagorno-Karabakh along the Azerbaijan border that do still have landmines so walking and trekking in these areas are not recommended. In Nagorno-Karabakh do not go east beyond the Martakert-Martuni Highway as this is the cease-fire line.
Have Any Questions Not Answered In This Armenia Travel Guide?
Ask in the comments below!
Need Travel Insurance for Armenia?
Start shopping plans over at battleface , my go-to travel insurance choice, or over at World Nomads .
More Posts from Armenia:
The Best Road Trips In The World
Dilijan Travel Guide + Best Things to do in Dilijan, Armenia
How to get to Dilijan from Yerevan (and Vanadzor)
Crossing the Georgia-Armenia Border by Marshrutka
Armenia Travel Guide: Monasteries, Mountains & A Disputed Territory
Hiking the Tripeak Trail in Dilijan National Park, Armenia
How to Get to Khor Virap Monastery, Armenia
3 Day Nagorno-Karabakh Road Trip
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ARMENIA , Europe
Planning to travel armenia 18 things you need to know.
I think it’s fair to say Armenia is pretty off the beaten track. Which is why knowing these 18 things before you travel there is pretty useful!
Indeed before I adventured here, there were just a handful of bloggers writing about this country online.
So, after my amazing time there, I wanted to post an article that would give other travellers thinking of heading here a bit of heads up about what to expect.
Because it’s hard to know what to expect from Armenia isn’t it?!
The first nation in the world to adopt Christianity as its state religion, a former Soviet state and situated between Iran, Turkey and Azerbaijan, it’s fair to say Armenia isn’t easy to pigeonhole!
Positioned at a long-standing travel nexus, straddling the border between both Europe and Asia, Armenia is something of a puzzle… and all the more amazing for it I say!
So if you’re planning on heading to this lovely little country, first of all, congrats and second of all, strap in for this ride through the 18 things to know before you travel Armenia…
- 21 Amazing Things to Do in Yerevan, Armenia
- Top 25 Things To Do in the Caucasus Region
- 21 Best Things to Do in Georgia
This page contains affiliate links meaning Big World Small Pockets may receive a small commission on any purchases at no extra cost to you.
#1 Visas for Armenia
The first thing you need to know if you want to travel Armenia is if you can!
And by that I mean, do you need to get a visa?
If you’re travelling from the UK, the EU, Australia, New Zealand, the US or Canada, then the great news is that you don’t need a visa to visit Armenia and can just get a stamp on arrival, either at a land crossing or at the airport.
This is also true for the citizens of many other Middle Eastern nations, but do check before you travel as the rules can always change.
#2 Crossing Into Armenia By Land
Unsurprisingly many travellers combine the Caucasus countries together when they travel and, as such, lots of people cross into Armenia via the land border with Georgia.
There’s primarily 2 reasons for this:
#1 Flights from Europe to this part of the world are generally cheaper when they land in Georgia, especially if you get a budget airline flight to the city of Kutaisi. As always, use Skyscanner to find the best deal.
#2 Armenia does not have open land borders with 2 of its neighbours, namely Turkey (semi-frosty relations, although flights do run between these 2 countries) and Azerbaijan (severely frosty relations and disputed territory issues).
As such, the only countries you can cross in Armenia from / to by land are Georgia and Iran, and it’s obvious, which the more frequently travelled country of those 2 is.
In relation to point 2, you also need to watch if you have an Azerbaijani stamp in your passport, as sometimes this can cause problems when entering Armenia.
That said, I’ve heard that the Armenian immigration officials are way more chilled than the Azerbaijani ones, so I do recommend heading to Azerbaijan first, followed by Georgia and then Armenia if you’re hitting up the 3 all in one trip.
I made the land crossing with Georgia myself when exiting Armenia and can happily attest to the fact it was one of the easiest border crossings I’ve ever made in my life.
Local minivans (mushrutkas) regularly ply the route between the 2 capitals of Yerevan and Tbilisi in a hurtling and hair-raising 7 hour journey through the countryside that costs around 7000 Armenian Dram … enjoy!
#3 Arriving By Air
Otherwise, if you’re arriving into Armenia via a flight, like I did, you’ll be arriving into the country’s only international airport just outside of the capital of Yerevan.
The cheapest flights generally arrive here from Dubai and Istanbul, so check out FlyDubai and Pegasus Airlines via Skyscanner if you’re looking to score a well-priced ticket.
The airport is small, but clean and efficient.
Pass immigration, grab your bag, use the ATM for some local currency and even get a SIM card if you need one – more about this in #18 of this article.
You can then grab a taxi to the city centre / your accommodation, but do not pay more than 4000 Armenian Dram.
Alternatively, use an Armenian ride-sharing app to get to the centre – more in #7.
#4 Best Time to Visit Armenia?
Armenia has a crazy climate, in that it goes from freezing cold in the winter to boiling hot in the summer!
I guess that’s the reality of being a landlocked, mountainous country!
As a result of the climate variation, I honestly think the perfect time to travel Armenia is during the northern hemisphere spring and autumn, namely April through June and September through October respectively.
In this way, the best time to travel Armenia is similar to that of the Middle East.
Travelling during these months means you avoid the freezing conditions of the bleak winter, but you don’t risk burning to a crisp in the summer temperatures and humidity!
It’s also wildflower season during spring and conditions are perfect for hiking, which you should definitely do when you travel Armenia.
I visited this country in June, and because I’m a sunshine-fan, loved the warm climate, long sunny days and green countryside backed by snowy mountains I found.
Here’s my perfect packing list for Armenia if you’re also travelling there in the spring / summer months.
#5 How Long to Travel Armenia For?
As a small country, most people allow between 2 days to 2 weeks to travel Armenia.
With 2 days, you’ll hardly see anything, with 2 weeks, you’ll see everything, so pitch it according to your travel style and how thorough you like to be!
For more info, including a day-to-day travel schedule, check out my Armenia itinerary , which gives you 5 options for a great trip here.
#6 Money in Armenia
The currency is Armenia is the Armenian Dram… but you knew that right!
ATMs are widespread in the cities here and easy to use with both Mastercard and Visa accepted.
However life gets very rural in Armenia very quickly, so if you’re heading out to the countryside at all, I definitely suggest taking all the cash you’ll need with you.
At the time of publication, the Armenian Dram was worth approximately…
£1 = 600 Dram
$1 USD = 450 Dram
1 Euro = 550 Dram
Yeah big numbers, annoying from my poor maths brain too!
When it comes to paying for things in Armenia, you want to ensure you’re not being charged overseas transaction fees or getting poor exchange rates when using your card abroad, which is why I always take my Wise card away with me wherever I travel.
The easy way to spend abroad with real exchange rates, no markups and no sneaky transaction fees, you can use your Wise card just like a debit card here… and it links easily with Google and Apple pay – sold! Grab yours here .
#7 Getting Around Armenia
Due to a lack of tourist infrastructure and some poor road conditions in parts, getting around Armenia can be a little tricky.
Public minivans, known as marshrutkas, are the cheapest way to go, but they only ply main roads and generally operate only to and from the capital.
To make matters a little more complicated, there are 6 marshrutka stations across Yerevan and finding out which buses leave from which stations is an adventure in itself!
Check out this useful website , which had the most current info I found online, otherwise ask where you’re staying for the latest details, as the often buses often change stations!
To combat the confusing minivan situation however, the good news is that hitchhiking is easy and commonplace across rural Armenia – often you’ll be picked up on the street without even having to stick your thumb out!
Otherwise, ride-sharing apps such as Yandex can be used to grab cheap taxi rides for shorter distances and make communicating across any language barriers much easier.
In Yerevan, there’s also an extremely cheap metro system.
Failing all of the above, guided day trips or private taxis will happily shuttle you to most major tourist sites around the country. If you can get a group together this can be a surprisingly cost-effective option. Check out these well-priced Armenia tours for some ideas.
#8 Travel Highlights in Armenia
There are 2 primary attractions across the whole of Armenia and they are… monasteries and mountains… and often they are combined!
Yes situated in the Caucasus region, Armenia is an undulating, elevated country which boasts beautiful mountain landscapes within its own borders, as well as the famous snow-capped peak of Mount Ararat (now situated within Turkey) that makes for an amazing backdrop.
As the oldest official Christian state in the world, Armenia also has a huge number of Orthodox Monasteries, that are often set in stunning locations and are adorned with beautiful frescos. Hundreds of years old, they are all very much living monasteries – regular worshippers still attend them and religion very much forms a large part of local life here.
In addition to the mountains and the monasteries, Armenia also boasts a beautiful lake – Lake Seven and offers several cable car experiences, namely at Tsaghkadzor and the longest one in the world at Tatev!
There’s Roman ruins at Garni , wine production in Areni and who can forget about all the amazing fresh produce and local food production that scatters the country.
For more information and ideas about what to see, check out my list of the top 10 things to do in Armenia .
#9 Hiking in Armenia
Hiking is a key thing to do when you travel Armenia and there’s no way any time here would be complete without a few good walks to take in the stunning views, ancient tracks and lungful’s of clean, fresh air.
Hiking trails can be found almost anywhere in country, mostly as ancient routes to and from villages, rather than purposefully constructed trails.
As such, it’s always a good idea to download the maps.me guide before you set out.
HIKEArmenia , who have an office in Yerevan, can provide you with a huge range of free information. Find them on Vardanants Street in the capital. They are open Mon-Sat 10am -7pm.
Some of the best hiking in the country can be found in the south, around the city of Goris, and in the Garni, Geghard, Goght area just outside of Yerevan.
#10 Visiting Monasteries
If you fancy seeing a good monastery, then trust me, Armenia is the country to come to!
From those UNESCO-listed ones in the north of country around the town of Alaverdi, to the picture-postcard Khar Virab, or the famous Tatev, Geghard or Noravank Monasteries, there’s a lot to choose from!
Great news for budget travellers is that all the monasteries are free to enter.
Suitable clothing must be worn to enter any Orthodox Monastery, which for women in particular, means long trousers / skirt and a headscarf. Thankfully, there are usually free garments at each church door you can borrow to enter.
If you are lucky, you may get to catch an Orthodox Sunday service at one of them, or at the very least some wonderful singing /chanting.
#11 Visiting Yerevan
Yerevan is where most people begin and end their time in Armenia and, in my opinion you can’t miss it.
There’s a few key sites to see in the capital, namely the Armenian Genocide Memorial Complex, the Cascade Comple, the Vernissage Market and the Republic Square.
While these are all fascinating places, the real beauty of Yerevan for me, was just the peaceful atmosphere of this city, which is celebrated in every corner – from the benches of its green parks to the cafes and wine bars that line its streets, along with its quirky antique and famous carpet shops.
Fresh fruit, vegetable and nut stalls line the pavements and you can’t walk more than 20m without stumbling across a coffee cart!
No surprise then that I loved this city and found it the perfect introduction to Armenian culture.
You can learn more in my article that covers the 21 amazing things to do in Yerevan .
#12 Where to Stay in Armenia?
Many travellers who are pushed for time find it easy to base themselves in Yerevan and simply day trip around Armenia from there.
Throughout my time in the capital I stayed at the wonderful MGA Hostel which, along with their sister property, Retro Hostel , I can highly recommend – central locations and great, English-speaking staff.
Otherwise, you may wish to consider Envoy Hostel who run their own tours, both within Armenia and to Georgia, and who offer guests a discount on these if they stay with them.
Outside of Yerevan, the fabulous 3G’s camping and guesthouse , run by the lovely Sandra, is well worth stopping by to enjoy the many sights, hikes and local life in this area. Situated between the Geghard Monastery and Garni Temple this place is perfect for sightseeing, but also chilling by the amazing pool and meeting other guests in the huge and well-equipped kitchens.
In Dilijan, I recommend Old Dili , or head to either Granby Hostel or Art Guest House.
In Goris you can stay at Yeghevnut Hotel – a traveller favourite.
#13 Armenian Food
And now we come to eating, one of the best things to do when you travel Armenia!
And it is any surprise given the amount of amazing, fresh produce they can grow in this fertile land?!
From vegetables to nuts, fruit to honey, cheese to bread, almost anything fresh you buy in Armenia will have been grown and / or produced here and it tastes all the more amazing for it.
Local streetsellers hawk their delicious goods on almost any street corner, otherwise, small farm stalls line the road sides and market places.
Don’t miss the sight of the traditional lavash bread being made either – you can spot this by Geghard Monastery as well as many other places in the country.
Seriously, don’t miss out on trying as much food as you can in Armenia!
#14 Drinking in Armenia
Ok so I lied, eating isn’t the real national pastime in Armenia… drinking is!
From mountain water to coffee to wine, Armenians love nothing more than a sit, a chat and a drink.
The water across the country is potable, thanks to all those beautiful mountain springs, which produce the most delicious water.
Fill your reusable metal water bottle from any tap in the country for free, or try the mountain water from any of the hundreds of free, public drinking fountains you see scattered around.
Next up, it’s the coffee, which is brewed here like Turkish / Arabic coffee. Traditionally served strong, black and with lashings of sugar, this is the perfect way to kick start your hiking!
Independent coffee carts litter the country serving up heaps of this delicious stuff for next to nothing.
And who, of course, can forget the wine?!
One of Armenia best produces, wine-drinking here is engrained into the culture and indulged in by just about every citizen.
Traditional wines flavoured with fruits are common, otherwise regular style red and whites are great, cheap and should be sampled in abundance when you travel Armenia!
#15 Costs of Travelling Armenia
Great news for those who wish to travel Armenia… this country is cheap as chips!
While accommodation and tours are pitched at an international market and therefore probably slightly more than you might expect, local food, drink and transport is extremely cheap and monasteries and hiking are free!
In light of all this, I’d suggest a budget of around 30 euros per day if you want to travel Armenia – this includes staying in private rooms in budget guesthouses / hostels, many meals out and some day tours.
If you only took public minivans / hitched and either camped or stayed in dorms, you could easily travel Armenia on between 10-20 euros a day.
Learn about the full cost breakdown of my trip to Armenia here .
#16 Safety in Armenia
I’m happy to report that my travel Armenia experience was definitely one of the safest ever.
Even as a solo female hitchhiking and hiking alone, I felt incredibly safe in this country with local people seemingly not able to do enough to help me.
In all honestly, I’d often be picked up when walking along the roadside and not even attempting to hitchhike!
And I was also given countless amounts of free food and drink.
I really felt Armenian people were so happy to have tourists visiting their country that their engrained hospitality and deeply religious values came into fullforce!
If you want to learn more, then check out the specific article I wrote about safety and my experience of travelling as a solo female in Armenia.
Alternatively, if you’re a long-term traveller, digital nomad or frequent remote worker seeking travel health cover, check out Safetywing’s Nomad Insurance policies.
#17 Armenian Culture
And that’s because I truly believe Armenian people are some of the friendliest going.
For them, it seems, welcoming strangers is part of an almost religious duty and they apparently can’t do enough to help you or make you feel welcome in their country.
Situated at a geographical crossroads, one that trading empires and migrating people have traversed for centuries, it Armenians appear to be tolerant and open people.
Like their Middle Eastern neighbours, there’s no doubt the Armenians are late night people too with little open, even in Yerevan, before 10am and bars still pumping every night of the week at 3am!
While many younger people, especially in the capital speak English, do be aware that many older people / those outside of the capital don’t speak English. If you know a bit of Russian, this may come in handy!
As I mentioned in the #3 airport arrival section of this article, Armenian SIM cards can easily be bought at the airport arrivals hall in Yerevan.
If you’re coming from Georgia or Iran however and need to buy a SIM car when you cross the border I highly recommend Beeline, who I used throughout my travels in Armenia.
With good coverage across the country, as well as 3G data packages for next to nothing, this makes a great opinion when you travel Armenia, especially if you will be out hiking / travelling by yourself and would like extra piece of mind.
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Mini Travel Guide to Armenia
Recommended Tours in Armenia
Check out these fantastic tours of Armenia , which will help you see the best of this country.
5 Packing Essentials for Armenia
#1 Caucasus Lonely Planet – Still my go-to when it comes to guidebooks, the Caucasus Lonely Planet packs in a huge amount of information about travelling in Armenia, Georgia & Azerbaijan and will likely save you the cost of a guide in many of this country’s fabulous historical attractions.
#2 Good Camera – From the mountain landscapes to the village life, you’ll want a good travel camera to capture the best of Armenia and the Sony A6000 mirrorless ticks my box every time!
#3 Headscarf – If you’re heading to see any monasteries in Armenia, ladies will need to come prepared with a headscarf to enter, as well as a long skirt or pair of pants and a long-sleeved top.
#4 Hiking Shoes – No trip to Armenia would be complete without spending at least a day or two hiking in this country’s untouched rural landscape. Coming prepared with a pair of good walking shoes is essential therefore and Keen Targhee’s II always get my vote!
#5 Rain Jacket – I visited Armenia in June, technically the start of summer and the high season, but was amazed how storms suddenly blew in across this high altitude country. Having my North Face lightweight, windproof and waterproof jacket therefore saved my life!
Travel Insurance for Armenia
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So there you have it, the 18 things to know before you travel Armenia.
Have I convinced you to visit this amazing country yet?
If you have any more questions, please shoot them across in the comments box below…
Creator of Big World Small Pockets, Stephanie Parker is a travel addict! Originally from Jersey in the Channel Islands, Stephanie adventures the world collecting tips, advice and stories, to share with a smile
13 thoughts on “ Planning to Travel Armenia? 18 Things You Need to Know ”
Great adventures. I hope visit Armenia and Georgia something I have been in most of American and European countries so far, but Armenia is definitily one in my list. Greetings from Chile, I hpe you can visit this part of Sudamerica soon.
Hi Jamie, I hope to get back to South America and Chile soon indeed! In the meantime, enjoy Armenia and Georgia – they are certainly both worth a visit! Best, Steph
My daughter and I are going on our first trip to Armenia in the summer of 2020. I read your blog and look forward to my trip! Thank you, now I know more about Armenia! Great photos!
Hi Tori, great to hear you and your daughter are planning to travel to Armenia, I’m sure you’re going to love it. So happy the blog has proved helpful and wishing you a fab trip. Best, Steph 🙂
There is international airport in Gyoumri (LWN). You can fly to Athens etc so the one near Yerevan ain’t the only one:)
Thanks so much Jerry, wasn’t aware of this at all, so really appreciate the info. Best, Steph 🙂
Did you get up north to the Shirak Province and Gyumri?? I stayed at a beautiful little villa (Villa Kars) in Gyumri for a couple weeks doing conservation work and traveling around with the most knowledgeable/kind guide ever. Those old monasteries and basilicas are just breath-taking! And up north they are just in the middle of fields! With cows roaming around! Amazing. Wish more travelers took interest in the country. I’d love love love to go back sometime. Great article!!
Hi Lisa, so delighted you like the article and I totally agree, Armenia is absolutely underrated and I’d love to go back too. I didn’t spend much time in the north, but sounds idyllic and certainly hope to spend more time there on my next visit. Thanks for your comment and top tips, best Steph 🙂
Highly interesting and helpful article. Gives a clear view on this rather unknown country that is actually the cradle of western civilisation. Am planning to travel through Turkey, Georgia, Armenia and Iran on a spiritual quest. Passing on to India and China if things work out well. Thanks for sharing and caring :). Best, Annemarie
Hi Annemarie, this sounds like a fantastic and exciting journey. So glad you found the article interesting and helpful. Happy travel planning, Best Steph 🙂
Hi Stephanie, this is an incredible and informative article and yes, I am convinced and you’ve covered all of the basic questions I had 🙂 Will be reading all the related articles too. Once question though, I have kind of decided at the last hour that Armenia is the place I want to go and travel dates are Nov 23 – 30 or thereabouts. Would I be able to hike during this time or see the beautiful mountains etc or will it be a waste of a trip during this time of the year.
Hi Melanie, lovely to hear from you and delighted to learn you found the article helpful. Hopefully the others I have written about Armenia will prove just as useful!
In terms of dates, I don’t want to put you off, but the end of November might be a little late in the season to travel Armenia, especially if you want to enjoy some hiking. Things will be getting cold by then, especially up in the mountains, and snow may well hamper your trip. I honestly think Armenia (and all the Caucasus countries) are best visited in either April-May or Sept-Oct, so maybe save Armenia for next year if you really want to experience this country at its best.
Hope that’s helpful. Happy travels Steph 🙂
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