Mystic Forests of Tavush
“Mystic Forests of Tavush” is a 7-day hiking tour in Armenia that takes travelers to the northeastern Tavush province, home to one of the most beautiful national parks of the country – the Dilijan national park. Travelers will be based in the spa resort town of Dilijan and will take 1-day hikes, exploring the area.
High mountains and deep canyons, lush forests and vast meadows of thousands of wildflowers, ice-cold rivers and secluded lakes – spectacular scenery and rich biodiversity that will impress even the most experienced travelers. Hike the newly built section of the Transcaucasian Trail, discover the medieval treasures hidden in the forests of Tavush, challenge your fears at the Yell Extreme Park. Experience Armenia off the beaten track!
Book your hiking tour in Armenia with Route Armenia tour operator and discover the country with us!
- Take a walking tour in Armenia’s capital, Yerevan
- Visit Lake Sevan and the 9th-century Sevanavank monastic complex
- Hike from Dilijan to Goshavank monastery through the forests of Dilijan National Park
- Have fun at the Yell Extreme Park and hike to Lastiver Waterfalls
- Hike from Haghartsin to Jukhtak Vank monastery
- Hike along the Kasagh canyon
- Taste Armenian congnac at the Ararat Brandy Factory
- Traditional Armenian cuisine
(Please note that this tour is available from April to November only.)
IncludedAccommodationMealsMuseum TicketsPersonal GuideTransfer to/from airportTransportation
Not IncludedAir ticketsAlcoholCoffee breakInsuranceSubway ticketsVisaWine tasting
Arrival at Zvartnots airport. Transfer to hotel. Lunch. Walking tour in the city.
Mother Armenia - Cascade - Opera House - Mashtots Avenue - Kond Old District - Parajanov Museum - St. Sarkis Cathedral - Blue Mosque - Republic Square
Walking tour around Yerevan. We’ll start our exploration of Armenia’s capital from the Mother Armenia monument located in the Victory Park, which provides one of the best panoramic views over Yerevan with Mount Ararat in the background.
From here, we’ll proceed to one of most iconic landmarks of Yerevan - the Cascade complex, and will walk down to the building of Yerevan Opera Theatre, getting acquainted with the Cafesjian centre’s unique collection of contemporary artworks displayed under the open sky along the way.
A relaxing walk along the Mashtots Avenue will take us to our next destination, the Kond Old District. Feel the breath of the 18th-century Yerevan. Roaming the narrow streets of Kond, we will descend to Paronyan street and will visit the Sergei Parajanov museum: a unique revolutionary artist who gave a new interpretation to traditional Armenian symbolism.
Our next destination is the St. Sarkis cathedral. Overlooking the Hrazdan canyon, Victory bridge and the setting of the former Yerevan fortress, this cathedral was rebuilt on the same site where a monastery consisting of 3 churches was operating since the early days of Christianity. The old monastery was destroyed during an earthquake in 17th century.
Yerevan is also home to the only acting mosque on the territory of Armenia - the Blue Mosque. Its cozy small garden is a favorite hideaway from the hustle and bustle of the city.
A mesmerizing fountain show (summer evenings only) at the Republic Square, the heart of Yerevan, will conclude our day’s program.
(The schedule of the first day of the tour program will be adjusted in accordance with the arrival time.)
Yerevan - Lake Sevan - Sevanavank Monastery - Noratus - Dilijan
We leave Yerevan early in the morning and take a train to Lake Sevan, the largest body of water in the Republic of Armenia. Considered the second highest freshwater lake in the world, Sevan has an elevation of over 1900 meters above the sea level and is surrounded by mountain ranges. The lake is famous for its peninsula where the 10th-century Sevanavank monastery is located. Enjoy some stunning panoramic views over the lake and the nearby mountains that open up from the monastery. Visit a medieval cemetery in the village of Noratus, home to the largest field of Armenian khachkars (cross stones) dating from 9th to 20th centuries.
Our next destination is Dilijan, a spa resort town in Armenia, surrounded by the lush forests of the Dilijan National Park. Wonder around the rural style wooden houses, get acquainted with the traditional furniture and attributes exhibited in the town’s local history museum, meet local artisans at their workshops.Free evening.
(Trains are available in the summer season, on certain days of the week only. If train not available, the group will travel on a bus.)
Hike from Dilijan to Parz Lake (Transcaucasian Trail)
After an early breakfast in Dilijan, we begin our hike from the town’s center to Parz Lake, following the newly built section of the Transcaucasian Trail. The Transcaucasian Trail (currently in development) is a long-distance hiking trail that, when completed, will connect Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan. A part of the trail that runs through Dilijan National Park was built by volunteers from all over the world in 2017.
The trail takes hikers to some of the most spectacular views of Dilijan National Park, with breathtaking landscapes and stunning meadows with wildflowers, and eventually reaches the Parz Lake, a beautiful small lake, where we can rest, or enjoy a cup of tea and snacks at the cafe on the site.
Optional: It is possible to continue the trail from here, and take an easy 7-kilometer long hike from Parz Lake to the nearby medieval monastery of Goshavank, which served as a law academy in the 12-13th centuries. If the group chooses not continue the hike, we’ll visit the monastery on a bus.Return to Dilijan.
Dilijan - Ijevan - Apaga Resort - Lastiver waterfall - Dilijan
We leave Dilijan and travel to Apaga Resort to continue our exploration of the mystic forests of Tavush province of Armenia. Located on an altitude of 1370 meters above sea level, 3km from Yenokavan village, Apaga Resort offers various activities for adventure seekers. There’s horseback riding, zip-line, rope park, zorbing, rock climbing - and all this amid a picturesque scenery of mountains, canyons and forests. A hiking trail running along the edge of the canyon will eventually take us down to Khachaghbyur river to see the beautiful cascades of the Lastiver waterfall and the nearby cave dwellings. Spend the second part of the day, enjoying breathtaking flights on 5 zip-lines available at the Yell Extreme Park, or explore the area while riding a horse.Return to Dilijan in the evening.
Dilijan - Haghartsin Monastery - Jukhtak Vank Monastery - Matosavank Monastery - Dilijan
The trail from Haghartsin to Jukhtak Vank is the longest and hardest trail in our tour. Starting from the 10-13th-century monastic complex of Haghartsin, the route takes hikers through dense forests, ice-cold rivers and springs, deep canyons of the Dilijan National Park - stunning sceneries, rich flora and fauna that will impress even the most experienced travelers. It takes 8-9 hours to complete to entire trail that ends at another medieval treasure hidden in the forests of Dilijan National Park - the Jukhtak Vank monastery, which derives its name from the twin churches built next to each other. From here, we’ll take a short hike to the ruins of the mysterious Matosavank monastery, built in the 13th century.Return to Dilijan.
Dilijan - Vanadzor - Armenian Alphabet Monument - Saghmosavank monastery - Hovhannavank Monastery - Yerevan
Our exploration of Tavush province comes to end. We leave Dilijan and travel to the city of Vanadzor, where you can visit the local agricultural market to get acquainted with local produce. Next destination is the Armenian Alphabet monument: see the two-meter high characters and find your initial letters among them.
From here, we’ll proceed to the monastery of Saghmosavank that seats on the edge of a cliff, overlooking the 60-meter deep Kasagh canyon. On a sunny day, three mountains can be seen from here – Mt. Ara, Mt. Aragats and Mt. Ararat. We’ll take a 2-hour long easy hike along the edge of the canyon to the nearby village of Ohanavan to visit another medieval monastery and will then return to Yerevan.
Yerevan - Matenadaran - Ararat Brandy Factory - Vernissage market - Zvartnots Airport - Departure from Yerevan
Start the day with a visit to Matenadaran – the museum of ancient manuscripts. Learn about the ancient Armenian alphabet and the long traditions of translation skills. Matenadaran is one of must-visit museums in Yerevan.
Head to Yerevan Brandy Factory famous for its Ararat brandy. Learn about the preparation process of Armenian brandy during the tour around the factory and discover the exquisite taste of this drink.
Explore the open-air Vernissage market in the heart of Yerevan and discover a wide variety of handmade works by local artisans representing Armenian culture.
Lunch. Transfer to Zvartnots airport. Departure from Yerevan.
(The schedule of the last day of the tour program will be adjusted in accordance with the departure time.)
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