A minimum of two or three days should be devoted to Yerevan's museums though check carefully the opening hours and days they are closed when planning your trip. Try to be in Yerevan at the weekend so as to get to Vernissage market. (An extra two or three days in Yerevan would allow visits to some of the worthwhile sites which can be reached as day trips from the capital.) In planning a trip round the rest of the country, there are three major factors to consider: whether or not to hire a car and, if so, whether or not to hire one with a 4x4; whether or not one wishes to do any walking; and whether some of the chosen places to visit will be inaccessible because of snow. The following would show a great deal of the country and could be tailored to suit individual requirements:
DAYS 1-3 Yerevan (or split time in Yerevan between start and end of tour).
DAY 4 Drive to Gyumri visiting Talin, Mastara and Harichavank en route. Visit Marmashen from Gyumri. Overnight Gyumri.
DAY 5 Drive via Spitak and the Pushkin Pass tunnel to Stepanavan. Visit Lori Berd. Then drive via Kurtan (visit Hnevank) to the Dzoraget/Alaverdi area for overnight.
DAY 6 Visit the monasteries of the Debed Gorge: Akhtala, Haghpat, Sanahin and Kobayr. Overnight in the Dzoraget/Alaverdi area.
DAY 7 Drive via Noyemberian to Dilijan visiting Makaravank en route and also Haghartsin. Visit Goshavank if not going to Makaravank. Alternatively, drive via Vanadzor visiting Goshavank and Haghartsin. Overnight in Dilijan or Ijevan.
DAY 8 Visit Sevanavank, the field of khachkars at Noratus and Selim caravanserai before descending into Vayots Dzor. Overnight in Vayots Dzor.
DAY 9 Walk to Tsakhatskar and Smbataberd. Overnight in Vayots Dzor.
DAY 10 Walk to Spitakavor. Overnight in Vayots Dzor.
DAY 11 Visit Tatev. Then return to Sisian or overnight.
DAY 12 Visit Karahunj. Then drive via Gndevank to Vayots Dzor for overnight.
DAY 13 Drive via Noravank and Khor Virap to Garni or Yerevan for overnight.
DAY 14 Visit Garni temple and Geghard before travelling via Yerevan to Ejmiatsin. Return to Yerevan for overnight.
If you want to visit the self-declared Republic of Nagorno Karabagh then on the eleventh day, after visiting Tatev, continue to Stepanakert.
Registering with the Nagorno Karabagh Foreign Ministry, either in Yerevan or Stepanakert is essential before visiting other parts of the territory. Gandzasar and Dadivank can be combined in a single day and the opportunity should be taken to visit Shushi. If there is time, Khndzoresk is not far off the Goris to Stepanakert road.
Anyone wishing to travel to the extreme south of the country could do so on the twelfth day after visiting Karahunj. Travel via Goris, stay overnight in either Kapan or Kajaran and visit Meghri for the day, possibly driving there on the older road via Kajaran and back on the newer one through the Shikahogh Reserve.
If you have any questions about travel to Armenia (visa, hotels, guide services, transportation), please feel free to contact us at any time and we will gladly answer your questions.