05 - 09/03/2014
Sevgi Tours -
Individual & group travel
Hall 3 2/201
|GEORGIA & ARMENIA and EAST - ANATOLIA|
Day 1 - Arrive in Tbilisi
Arrive in Tbilisi with Turkish Airlines. Transfer to the hotel. Dinner in a traditional Georgian restaurant.
Day 2 -Tbilisi
|Tbilisi sightseeing program – visit the Old Town. The city offers a great variety of sights, most of them very ancient. All the places of interest in the Old Town are very close to each other, within a few minutes' walk. We start our visit to Old Tbilisi from Metekhi Church (13th century), then walk to the Synagogue, Sioni Cathedral (6th-7th centuries) and Anchiskhati Church (6th century). Afterwards we drive up to Mother Georgia statue and walk down to Narikala Fortress (4th century) en route enjoying beautiful views of Old Town. Then we visit Sulphur Baths district. This marks the end of the Old Town. Then visit History museum in Tbilisi with Golden treasury and take a stroll along Rustaveli Avenue.|
Dinner in a traditional Georgian restaurant. Overnight at the hotel in Tbilisi.
Day 3 - Tbilisi – Mtskheta – Wine-tasting – Ananuri – Gudauri
Drive to visit the ancient capital and religious center of Georgia – Mtskheta and see its historical places: Jvari Monastery (6th century) and Svetitskhoveli Cathedral (11th century) where the Robe of Christ is buried. Both Jvari and Svetitskhoveli are UNESCO World Heritage sites. Continue to the winery Chateau Mukhrani that was founded in 19th century by Georgian Prince Ivane Mukhranbatoni. Continue to drive along the famous Military Highway. On the way visit Ananuri fort overlooking Jinvali water reservoir.
Day 4 - Gudauri – Kazbegi – Tbilisi
Drive along Tergi river to the village Kazbegi and enjoy beautiful landscapes on the way. In Kazbegi walk up through beautiful valleys and woodland to Gergeti Trinity Church located at 2170 m (3,5 up&down). Weather permitting you may catch a glimpse of one of the highest glaciers in the Caucasus – Mt. Kazbegi (5047 m). Then drive along Dariali gorge. Return to Tbilisi. Dinner in a restaurant. Overnight at the hotel in Tbilisi.
Day 5 - Tbilisi –Alaverdi – Haghpat – Sanahin – Dilijan
|Transfer to the Georgien-Armenian border Sadakhlo.|
Meet at border Sadakhlo and change of guide and coach and drive to Alaverdi region. Visit to the medieval Sanahin Monastery (10-13 cent., a UNESCO World Heritage site), which is comprised of several churches and chapel. The name "Sanahin" in Armenian means "this one is older than the other" and this name was given to the monastery to mention that it is older than its neighboring monastery: Haghpat. After Sanahin monastery we will visit to Haghpat Monastery (10-13 cent. a UNESCO World Heritage site). The construction of this monastery is associated with the glory of the Bagratuni Royal Family. The oldest structure of the monastery, the holy Cross Church was built in 977-911. Each of these two monasteries is unique and has unique architecture. After all we will drive to Dilijan. Dinner and overnight at the hotel in Dilijan.
Day 6 - Dilijan – Sevan – Garni – Geghard – Yerevan
|Breakfast. Take trip to Lake Sevan, one of the world's largest high-altitude lakes (2000 meters above the sea level). It attracts the visitors with its beautiful absolutely blue waters. It is also called "Armenia Pearl". It is one of the three largest lakes of Armenian Highland and formerly it was called Gegharkunik or Gegharkuniac Sea. It is fed by 28 rivers; among them are Gavaraget, Argishti, Martuni and others. And one river: the River Hrazdan id fed by Lake Sevan. Nowadays Lake Sevan is a well-know vacation spot and also outstanding touristic centre. We will also visit to Sevanavank monastery. It is situated on the peninsula of Lake Sevan. It's a medieval monastery. There are two monasteries in fact; one of them is much older and now only its ruins remain. After here we will visit to Geghard Monastery. The name of the monastery came from the legendary lance that was used to pierce the body of Christ; it was kept here for centuries. Though the exact date of foundation of the monastery is unknown, the present complex was built in the mid – 13th century.) Here you will also have the chance to listen to a beautiful choir. Then we will walk along the canyon, by the beautiful columnar basalt 9th century stone bridge over the Azat River to Garni Pagan Temple, built in the 1 Century AD. It is the only temple that had remained us from the Roman times. After the adoption of Christianity as a state religion all the pagan temples have been ruined and only Garni was preserved. This temple was devoted to the god of cleanness: Mitra. In 1679 it, was destroyed by earthquake. In the 1975 the Temple was restored. Then we will get back to Yerevan. Dinner and overnight in Yerevan.|
Day 7 - Yerevan – Khor Virap – Noravank – Areni – Yerevan
|Breakfast at the hotel. Today we will start our tour with the trip to Khor Virap (4-18th cc..). Gregory the Enlightener was imprisoned here for long years until Christianity was adopted a state religion. Before the imprisonment Gregory was the servant of the King Trtad III the Great. So Gregory the Enlightener became the first Catholicos of Armenian church. On the way to Khor Virap you can enjoy the spectacular view of the sacred Ararat Mountain- an immortal symbol of Armenia. Then we will have excursion to Noravank Monastery (13-14th cc..). It is situated among amazing sheer rocks on the bench of a twisty gorge. It is the only monastery which keeps a sculpture which has the image of the Father God. And what is most interesting is that this sculpture was not ruined during the attacks of Mongols. It was because the eyes of God of the sculpture were almond-cut as theirs: Mongols'. On our way back we will visit Areni church (4th c). The village of Areni is famous also for its excellent wine, which you are welcome to taste. Then we will drive to Yerevan. Dinner and overnight in Yerevan.|
Day 8 - Yerevan-Zvartnoc-Echmiadzin-Giumri
|Breakfast. Excursion around Yerevan: Visit to the Manuscript museum, Matenadaran. Here All Ancient Armenian Munuscripts are kept. It was given the name of Mesrop Mashtoc: the creator of Armenian Alphabet, which is one of the oldest alphabets in the world, created on 405 A.C. Then our tour will continue to the ruins of the glorious 7th century Zvartnots Cathedral. It was founded by an Armenian Catholicos Nerses the Constructor. Then we will drive to the holy centre of Armenia: city Echmiadzin. Visit to the Mother Cathedral of Holy Echmiadzin, the spiritual and admin of the Armenian Church. In route the guide will tell you the story of the declaration of Christianity as a state religion of Armenia. Upon entering the city of Echmiadzin, you will see a 7th century church, where the shrine of St. Hripsime (3rd Century) and the relics of the other 40 martyred Hripsimian nuns lie. The name Echmiadzin (descent of the only begotten) comes from a legend, according to which St. Gregory Illuminator saw Christ in a dream descending with a golden hammer indicating the location where the cathedral should be built. Now Echmiadzin is the residence of the Catholicos, the head of Armenian Apostolic Church. Drive to Gyumri, which is the second largest city in Armenia. It used to be an important Armenian cultural center in the late 19th early 20th century. It is also considered to be the capital of humor of in Armenia. Then we will take a walk through its historical center (Alexandropol) that has many traditional 19th-century houses. Dinner and overnight in Gyumri|
Day 9 - Gjumri – City Tour – Bavra Border- Turkey
|Breakfast. City tour in Gyumri, Visit Old City Alexandrapol which has been remained an architectural style of 19th century. Visit beer factory "Alexandrapol" and degustation of Armenian beer. Then Visit the museum of Aslamazyan sisters in the centre of Gyumri.|
Drive to Armenian-Georgian border Bavra. Border formalities, transport from Georgian to Turkish border.
Past the border and drive beautiful mountains and forests of Ardahan region. Arriving in Kars.
Dinner and overnight in Kars.
Day 10 - Kars - Church Of Apostels - Medieval Ani
|After breakfast we will tour its narrow streets that have many 19th century buildings in Russian architectural style, see the medieval stone bridge and the imposing Church of Apostles (10th century). We will ascend to the royal fortress of Kars, once the capital of Armenia, the seat of Bagratouni kings, and witness to numerous wars. Our next stop will be legendary Ani, the magnificent capital of the mighty Armenian kingdom of the 9 - 11th centuries. It used to be called the city of one thousand and one churches, and was the largest religious, trade, and cultural center on the Silk Road at the Europe and Asia crossroad. We will experience the power of the medieval city walls and towers, glorious cathedrals and palaces and mosques that are still standing after a millennium. Dinner and overnight in Dogubeyazit|
Day 11-Dogubeyazit-Ishak Pasha Palace-Muradie Waterfalls-Van City And Lake-Urartian Tushpa
|After breakfast ,we will enjoy the panoramic view of Mount Ararat from the opposite side. In old Bayazed we will tour the magnificent 17th century palace of Ishak Pasha, its peculiar harem rooms, deep dungeons and cozy courtyards. By the palace we will see the unassailable fortress of Daroink, the Arshakouni kings' (1 - 5 th centuries AD) treasury and stronghold. Next we will head to Van and make a stop by the beautiful waterfall of Muradiye. Lunch picnic at the waterfall. Upon arrival in Van we will visit the ancient Urartian fortress of Tushpa/ Van (9th century BC) that has impressing cuneiform inscriptions of King Sarduri. Dinner and overnight in Van|
Day 12-Van – Sourb Khach Cathedral on Aghtamar Island
After breakfast, we will drive to Gevas and take the boat to Aghtamar Island and enjoy the unique Sourb Khach cathedral (10th century) that is all covered with magnificent Biblical relieves on the outside and frescoes inside. It is considered an exclusive architectural treasure worldwide. At the restaurant by the lake we will taste the famous tarekh or inji kefal, the only fish specie found in the lake, and enjoy swimming and resting on the lakeshore.Dinner and overnight in Van.
Day 13 -
|Transfer to airport for your return flight home.|