Backpacking Armenia

Hello to all aspiring and seasoned backpackers! A country full of myths, stories, as well as landscapes and culture is waiting for you. Here’s our route for the perfect backpacking trip through Armenia!


Important Basics

Official Language ( Armenian )
EnglishArmenian
HelloBa-rew!
Goodbyetso-te-su-tun
Thank yousho-nor-ha-ka-lu-tun
Yesayo
Nowotsch
Capital City

Yerevan

Form of government

Parliamentary Republic

Best Time to Visit

Spring and autumn

Fun Facts
  • Etchmiadzin Cathedral is the oldest church in the world!
  • Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, is older than Rome.
  • Serj Tankian, the lead singer of the heavy metal band System of a Down, is Armenian.
  • Lavash, a type of Armenian bread, is on the UNESCO List of Intangible Cultural Heritage.

Cities

Yerevan

The first stop of your trip is the capital of Armenia. Yerevan was founded in 782 BC, making it older than even Rome. The cityscape is very distinctive thanks to the pink-red-brownish colored volcanic rock used to build the capital. This is also the origin of Yerevan’s nickname “pink capital”.

The ancient architecture is nicely contrasted by more modern buildings and contemporary designs. These differences continue in the lively city center, where you’ll find hip cafés and stylish wine bars, as well as historic spas and traditional tea houses. The architectural highlight and heart of the city center is the impressive Republic Square.

We also recommend a stroll along Northern Avenue and Abovyan Street, which are considered the most popular streets in the city. Alternatively, you could visit the Genocide Museum, where you can learn more about the difficult history of the Armenian people. You also shouldn’t miss Yerevan's world-famous Brandy Distillery, which is located in an old fortress.

Near Republic Square, the historic city center, you’ll have a large choice of hostels for the night. Staying in a four-bed dorm will cost about €5.

Halidzor

A taxi will take you to Halidzor for about €12. The fortress, built in the 17th century, is located near the town of Kapan and is the cultural highlight of any trip to Armenia. We highly recommend a ride on the cable car "Wings of Tatev". It runs high above the river Vorotan and connects Halidzor with the 1,500 m high Tatev Monastery.

At a length of 5.75 km without intermediate support, the cable car is even listed in the Guinness Book of Records. It takes you directly to the Armenian Apostolic Tatev Monastery, which is considered one of the most important architectural monuments in the country. Back in Halidzor, you should also explore the surrounding area by hiking through the green valleys, over suspension bridges, and through idyllic walnut groves.

Not far from Halidzor you’ll find hotels where you can stay for €25 per night in a double room.

Yeghegnadzor

The town of Yeghegnadzor is situated at an altitude of 1,200 m in the valley of the Arpa River. You can reach it from Kapan for just €10. Surrounded by picturesque countryside, it’s the ideal starting point for exploring Armenia’s south. Discover the ancient landscape and be inspired by the locals’ serenity!

You also shouldn’t miss this chance to take in the country’s beautiful scenery on hiking trips. Discover hidden gems such as the Smbataberd Fortress, the Mozrov and Arjeri Caves, and the picturesque village of Yeghegis. Since Armenia is one of the oldest wine producers in the world, you should also visit the area surrounding Areni and take part in a tasting at one of the traditional wineries.

During your stay in Yeghegnadzor, you can stay in a twin room in a hostel for €14 per night.

Noravank

Just a short €2 taxi ride from Yeghegnadzor is the Noravank Monastery. This impressive monastery complex is located at the end of the Amaghu Valley against a backdrop that is unique in the Armenian mountains.

The monastery complex was built in the 13th century and features two churches, a chapel, and a lot of cross-stones (so-called khachkars). Its unique architecture with detailed sculptures, ornate reliefs, and religious elements as well as its historical significance make this monastery a truly magical place. Add the magnificent panoramic view of the brick-red cliffs of the gorge, and it’s no surprise that Noravank is considered to be one of the most beautiful monastic buildings in the country.

A comfortable single room in a hostel near the monastery costs €18 per night.

Lake Sevan

Your final stop is Lake Sevan. A taxi ride (about €10) across the picturesque Selim Pass will bring you to one of the largest high-mountain lakes in the world. The "blue pearl" of Armenia is twice the size of the Dead Sea and is embedded in an imposing mountain backdrop. Do you fancy a beach holiday at an altitude of almost 2,000 m?

In that case, you’ve come to the right place! On the shores of Lake Sevan, you’ll find small stretches of beach where you can just relax and go swimming in the fresh, deep blue water. You can also go diving, windsurfing, or boating here. To get the best view of the lake, visit the Sevanavank, a monastic complex located on a peninsula above the lake. The monastery itself is also a very popular photo backdrop!

A private room in a nearby hostel will cost you €13 per night.


Yerevan

Yerevan

The first stop of your trip is the capital of Armenia. Yerevan was founded in 782 BC, making it older than even Rome. The cityscape is very distinctive thanks to the pink-red-brownish colored volcanic rock used to build the capital. This is also the origin of Yerevan’s nickname “pink capital”.

The ancient architecture is nicely contrasted by more modern buildings and contemporary designs. These differences continue in the lively city center, where you’ll find hip cafés and stylish wine bars, as well as historic spas and traditional tea houses. The architectural highlight and heart of the city center is the impressive Republic Square.

We also recommend a stroll along Northern Avenue and Abovyan Street, which are considered the most popular streets in the city. Alternatively, you could visit the Genocide Museum, where you can learn more about the difficult history of the Armenian people. You also shouldn’t miss Yerevan's world-famous Brandy Distillery, which is located in an old fortress.

Near Republic Square, the historic city center, you’ll have a large choice of hostels for the night. Staying in a four-bed dorm will cost about €5.

Halidzor

Halidzor

A taxi will take you to Halidzor for about €12. The fortress, built in the 17th century, is located near the town of Kapan and is the cultural highlight of any trip to Armenia. We highly recommend a ride on the cable car "Wings of Tatev". It runs high above the river Vorotan and connects Halidzor with the 1,500 m high Tatev Monastery.

At a length of 5.75 km without intermediate support, the cable car is even listed in the Guinness Book of Records. It takes you directly to the Armenian Apostolic Tatev Monastery, which is considered one of the most important architectural monuments in the country. Back in Halidzor, you should also explore the surrounding area by hiking through the green valleys, over suspension bridges, and through idyllic walnut groves.

Not far from Halidzor you’ll find hotels where you can stay for €25 per night in a double room.

Yeghegnadzor

Yeghegnadzor

The town of Yeghegnadzor is situated at an altitude of 1,200 m in the valley of the Arpa River. You can reach it from Kapan for just €10. Surrounded by picturesque countryside, it’s the ideal starting point for exploring Armenia’s south. Discover the ancient landscape and be inspired by the locals’ serenity!

You also shouldn’t miss this chance to take in the country’s beautiful scenery on hiking trips. Discover hidden gems such as the Smbataberd Fortress, the Mozrov and Arjeri Caves, and the picturesque village of Yeghegis. Since Armenia is one of the oldest wine producers in the world, you should also visit the area surrounding Areni and take part in a tasting at one of the traditional wineries.

During your stay in Yeghegnadzor, you can stay in a twin room in a hostel for €14 per night.

Noravank

Noravank

Just a short €2 taxi ride from Yeghegnadzor is the Noravank Monastery. This impressive monastery complex is located at the end of the Amaghu Valley against a backdrop that is unique in the Armenian mountains.

The monastery complex was built in the 13th century and features two churches, a chapel, and a lot of cross-stones (so-called khachkars). Its unique architecture with detailed sculptures, ornate reliefs, and religious elements as well as its historical significance make this monastery a truly magical place. Add the magnificent panoramic view of the brick-red cliffs of the gorge, and it’s no surprise that Noravank is considered to be one of the most beautiful monastic buildings in the country.

A comfortable single room in a hostel near the monastery costs €18 per night.

Lake Sevan

Lake Sevan

Your final stop is Lake Sevan. A taxi ride (about €10) across the picturesque Selim Pass will bring you to one of the largest high-mountain lakes in the world. The "blue pearl" of Armenia is twice the size of the Dead Sea and is embedded in an imposing mountain backdrop. Do you fancy a beach holiday at an altitude of almost 2,000 m?

In that case, you’ve come to the right place! On the shores of Lake Sevan, you’ll find small stretches of beach where you can just relax and go swimming in the fresh, deep blue water. You can also go diving, windsurfing, or boating here. To get the best view of the lake, visit the Sevanavank, a monastic complex located on a peninsula above the lake. The monastery itself is also a very popular photo backdrop!

A private room in a nearby hostel will cost you €13 per night.

Armenia Route Map

Itinerary and Stops.

Tag
Route/Station
Transport
Unterkunft
1. Home – Yerevan
Home – Yerevan
Flight
125
4-bed dorm
5
2. Yerevan
Yerevan
-
4-bed dorm
5
3. Yerevan – Halidzor
Yerevan – Halidzor
Taxi
12
Double room
25
4. Halidzor
Halidzor
-
Double room
25
5. Halidzor
Halidzor
-
Double room
25
6. Halidzor – Yeghegnadzor
Halidzor – Yeghegnadzor
Taxi
10
Twin room
14
7. Yeghegnadzor
Yeghegnadzor
-
Twin room
14
8. Yeghegnadzor
Yeghegnadzor
-
Twin room
14
9. Yeghegnadzor – Noravank Monastery
Yeghegnadzor – Noravank Monastery
Taxi
2
Private room
18
10. Noravank Monastery
Noravank Monastery
-
Private room
18
11. Noravank Monastery – Lake Sevan
Noravank Monastery – Lake Sevan
Taxi
10
Private room
13
12. Lake Sevan
Lake Sevan
-
Private room
13
13. Lake Sevan
Lake Sevan
-
Private room
13
14. Lake Sevan – Home
Lake Sevan – Home
Taxi+Flight
130

Total price.

Flights 250,00
Transportation 39,00
Touren 0,00
Accommodation 202,00
Total491,00

Du möchtest 

deine eigene

Reise erstellen?

Du möchtest deine

eigene Reise erstellen?

Dos and Donts, Food & Drinks, Costs.

Breakfast

Pastries: breakfast isn’t a big deal in Armenia, so you’ll mostly just have a pastry filled with honey or yoghurt. It might not seem much, but it tastes amazing! Add some fruit, and you’ve got yourself a perfect breakfast.

Soups

Spas: this traditional dish, which you can get both hot and cold, is made from matzoon (a yoghurt-like product) and wheat. It is often garnished with spinach and herbs.

Aveluk: this soup is made from sorrel, which is dried and then cooked in the soup broth. This dish is typical for Armenia’s more rural areas.

Main Courses

Khash: a widespread dish made from cow’s trotters. Nowadays, it’s considered a delicacy and is prepared with expensive spices.

Tolma: this stuffed dish is made from minced meat wrapped in vine leaves. It’s served with vegetables and salad.

Zhengyalov hats: traditional flat bread filled with chopped herbs and green vegetables.

Lavash: this is Armenia’s traditional bread and is often served as a side dish. It comes in sweet and savory varieties, so there’s something for everyone.

Gata: this puff pastry cake has a sweet filling, usually consisting of yogurt or fruit. It makes a great dessert!

Drinks & Snacks

Ararat: this cognac-style brandy is made from green grapes and has been produced by the Yerevan Brandy Company since 1887.

Murabba: don’t miss out on this traditional Armenian jam!

Soorj: Armenian coffee is very sweet. Water, sugar, and very fine coffee powder are boiled together over an open flame..

Armenia

The exchange rate for 100 Armenian dram (֏) is around €0.19 (as of February 2020). See prices for certain products and the cost of living below.

Cost of Living

Food

Free time

Personal Hygiene

Dos

Become part of the culture: if you’re out in the evening and see a festival on the street, just join in and dance with the locals. Spend time in traditional cafés and get involved in the community. This is the best way to get to know Armenia.

Leave a small tip: in Armenia, it’s customary to leave a small tip at a restaurant or hotel. It’s not the amount of money that’s important here, but the gesture itself.

Enjoy the nightlife: this doesn’t mean endless parties, but rather small, local events. Especially in the big cities, there are countless events every night, and you’ll have enough opportunities to make some unforgettable memories.

Don'ts

Shyness: are you shy? You’ll get over it quickly here! The locals are very open and hospitable, and you should follow their example while traveling around Armenia. Be open to the culture and take every opportunity to have an adventure. Don’t forget to also just have a chat with the locals – you’ll love it!

Showing up empty-handed: if an Armenian invites you to their house, it’s customary to bring a small gift as a thank-you. You’ll usually be offered a large meal, and bringing a small present for your host(s) is therefore the polite thing to do.

Skipping the countryside: don’t spend all of your time in the cities. The rest of the country, especially the mountain regions, are far too beautiful to miss. Go and explore the countryside – you won’t regret it!

Visa, Visa, Passport & Vaccinations

Passport

Yes

Temporary passport

Yes

National ID

No

Temporary national ID

No

Child’s pass

Yes

Visa

(Not necessary)

Vaccine

Robert-Koch-Instituts

Additional Remarks.

Identity documents must be valid for five months beyond the date of travel. Please also find out about the current entry regulations regarding COVID. You can find further information at your country’s Foreign Office.

The team at Backpacker Trail wishes you lots of fun and an unforgettable trip!

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