The Cradle of Christianity in the East

Highlights

Get into the festive spirit and celebrate Easter with us!
Every year thousands of Christians head to Armenia, the oldest Christian country, to celebrate Easter − the celebration of the resurrection of the Christ from the dead. As early as in 301 AD Christianity was adopted as the country’s national religion. In Armenia Easter is celebrated on the first Sunday after the full moon following the vernal equinox. Therefore, the date of Easter may fall between March 21 and April 25. In Armenian Easter is called "Zatik" and it is considered as the "feast of feasts".
The reception of Holy Communion takes place at the end of Mass. For the believers of the Armenian Apostolic Church it stands for the end of Holy Week and the forty days of the Great Lent. The same evening families and friends get together for holy dinner with a traditional greeting and toast "Christ is risen from the dead. Blessed is the resurrection of Christ", which is followed by egg fights.
Among Christians, Easter is an annual celebration, when families gather around the table and start the evening celebration. Armenian traditional Easter dinner table consists of colored-eggs, boiled fish, different local herb dishes, rice cooked with raisin and dried fruit, and Armenian red wine.
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Itinerary

Arrival at Zvartnots International Airport. Meet and greet and then transfer to your hotel, afterward some leisure time at your disposal.

The meaning of The Holy Sunday:
Palm Sunday marks the beginning of Holy Week, as well as the anticipation and excitement of Easter. Commemoration of Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem is celebrated on Palm Sunday, during which palm branches are blessed and distributed to the faithful. Meeting with guide in the lobby of the hotel. The first day of your tour will begin with the capital of Armenia. You will have a professionally guided tour in the History Museum of Armenia where a rich collection of Armenian ancient artefacts is exhibited in the halls of the museum, representing exhibits from Prehistoric Armenia to the XX century centuries. Next, we will take a direction to Megerian carpet factory, where numerous rugs with different patterns and colors exhibited in the museum of the factory, represent long history of Armenian rug-making art. Later, we will take a stroll in the capital and explore numerous monuments of the pink city. In the evening, we will stop at The Republic Square to admire its impressive architecture and enjoy the show of the Singing Fountains in the evening.

Today we will head to the Aragatsotn province to explore a medieval miracle called Hovhannavank. The monastery will award us with a stunning view over the Kasagh Gorge. Later, we will proceed to the XIII century monastic complex of Saghmosavank, with a spectacular view of the Mount Aragats on the background. The tour will continue to the Fortress of Amberd located in the same province. This XI century fortress was built on the top of the mountain, which offers its visitors a perfect view with green background and deep canyon underneath. Last sight for today will be Vahramashen Church, which looks as if it is the continuation of Amberd, having the same marvelous view over the edge of the canyon. In the evening we will return to the capital.

The meaning of the Holy Tuesday:
The Church commemorates the Parable of the Wise and Foolish Virgins, which is taken from the holy Gospel of Matthew (Matthew 25, 1-13). Ten children come to the altar; five of them hold lighted candles, symbolizing the Wise Virgins, while the other five with extinct candles symbolize the Foolish Virgins. The evening prayer is a preparation for the coming of the Lord. In the morning we will take a direction to the southern part of the country. The first stop will be at Khor Virap Monastery, standing high on the plain Ararat Valley. We will be gifted a flawless view of the Mount Ararat on a clear day. Next, we will drive to the wine-making center of the country − Areni. While there, we will have a traditional Armenian lunch and taste local wine at family vineyard. Afterwards, we will drive to Amaghu Gorge, which is always twined with Grand Canyon, where one of the most beautiful monasteries, called Noravank is situated. This is a perfect location for taking photos and admiring the surrounding red cliffs. While there, we will have a coffee break in a cozy cave-cafe. In the evening we will arrive in Goris to stay overnight.

The new day will start with a delicious breakfast in Armenian town Goris. Afterwards, we will visit Old Khndzoresk Village. This will be a real gift for nature lovers as the caves and rocks look as if they have cracked the mountains and came to the surface. Afterwards, we will continue to the Monastery of Tatev. The combination of architectural marvel together with divine nature around, make Tatev one of the most visited and photographed places in Armenia. From there, we will take the longest reversible ropeway of the world. We will have a chance to enjoy the stunning scenery of the steep Vorotan Gorge from the cabin of the ropeway. At the end of the day we will return to our hotel in Goris.

The meaning of the dayholy Thursday is the commemoration of the Last Supper of Jesus Christ. On the eve of His death on the cross, Jesus washed the feet of His Disciples, and therewith He displayed the epitome of servitude. After evening prayers, gradual extinguishing of candles takes place, which symbolizes the betrayal and sufferings of Christ. Today we will start our tour exploring the megalithic complex of Karahunj or Armenian Stonehenge − an observatory used by locals about thousands of years ago. After, we will enjoy our lunch on the bank of the River Arpa and later, we will embark on an exploratory trip to the caravanserai of Selim, which offered shelter for all travelers and their animals that were crossing the mountains. Next, we will head to Noratus, which is an ancient cemetery covered with khachkars. Near Hayravank Village, on the western shore of Lake Sevan, we will visit the Hayravank Monastery, built in the IX century, which overlooks gorgeous Lake Sevan. Later, we will head in the direction of Sevan Peninsula to discover another precious ancient structure − Sevanavank Monastery. Due to the great location, we will have a chance to enjoy the fantastic view over the lake and its nearby area. In the evening we will depart to Yerevan to spend our leisure time there.

Early in the morning we will continue to the Province of Kotayk, where the most top rated landmarks are waiting for us. First one on the list is Geghard Monastery, which is carved out of a solid mountain. A gorgeous monastic complex is surrounded by cliffs and mountains of Azat Valley. The trip continues to Garni, where we will admire ''The Symphony of Stones'' – the wonderful ensemble of organ pipes made of basalt. The last treasure to be uncovered for this day will be Garni Hellenistic Temple – a pre-Christian monument located on the western side of the valley. This historic site offers panoramic viewpoint from top, where endless cliffs and mountains resemble a landscape on canvas. In the evening you will be dropped-off to your hotel in Yerevan.

Holy Saturday is a day of silent prayer and meditation on the Christ's death. After the evening prayer a new day begins. This festive evening symbolizes the end of Lent. Today we will stop at Matenadaran, which holds rich collection of ancient manuscripts, that have been preserved over many centuries. After lunch we will head to Tsitsernakaberd, where the Armenian Genocide Museum and Memorial are located. The evening is at leisure for you to explore the vibrant city.

This special day, we will start from the ruins of Zvartnots Cathedral and St Hripsime Church, where the view of the Mount Ararat is as beautiful a as a picture. Later, we will head to the Holy City of Etchmiadzin, which is considered as the spiritual center of all Armenians – Etchmiadzin Cathedral. We will pay a visit to the first church of Armenia, built in 303, which is fabulous inside and outside. The tour continues to Aknashen Village, where we will have a traditional lunch with the local people, who will teach us how to make Armenian bread − lavash, which is baked in clay oven built into the ground. At the end of the day we will return to the capital to pack our belongings for a journey back home.

Transfer to the airport. See you soon Armenia!

Price per person
Meals 1 - 2 3 - 4 5 - 6 7 - 8 9 - 10 11 - 12
Double Room with Breakfast 1290 830 670 590 550 520
with Half Board 1390 930 770 690 650 620
with Full Board 1490 1030 870 790 750 720

* Single Room Surcharge - 230 EUR

** Prices can be different depending on the season

*** All prices are in EUR

What’s included
Transport

Hotel pick-up / drop-off

Airport transfer

Comfortable transportation according to the program in air-conditioned vehicles

Supervision

Local English-speaking guide

Hiking guide (1 day)

Meals and Drinks

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Drinking water

Wine tasting

"Lavash" baking master class (1 day)

Entrance

All entrance fees

Tatev ropeway fee

Other

Travel documentation

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From 520 EUR

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Tour Details
Group Type
Single, Group, Family
Duration
10 days / 9 nights
Group Size
1 - 12
Guiding Method
Live Guide / Instructor
Guide Language
English / French / German / Russian

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