Khor Virap Monastery
Armenia and Georgia
Pre-dating Rome by more than 30 years Armenia is the oldest officially Christian country in the world, followed just a few years later by Georgia. Evidence of this is abundant with many beautiful monasteries and churches dotted around the dramatic countryside of both countries. The most famous of these monasteries is Khor Virap where St Gregory the Illuminator was imprisoned for preaching Christianity during Pagan times.
Tblisi • Sighnaghi • Ikalto Monastery • Mrsheka • Gergeti • Sevan • Yerevan
Day 1 Fly from the UK to Tblisi, the capital of Georgia. On arrival transfer to the hotel.
Day 2 Guided tour of Tblisi, including the old town, Metechi Church, Narikala Fortress, Sioni Cathedral and Anchiskhati Basilica, the oldest church in Tblisi. After lunch visit the Georgian Orthodox Cathedral (one of the largest in the world) and the Open Air Museum of Ethnography.
Day 3 Drive to Mt Gareja and visit the 6th century Monastery of David Gareja. Then visit Sighnaghi, one of the most beautiful walled towns in the region. In the afternoon visit Bodbe Monastery, seat of the Bishops of Bodbe, before continuing to Telavi for the overnight stop.
Day 4 Visit Alaverdi Cathedral in the Alazani Valley and then Ikalto Monastery, once a significant cultural and scholastic centre. Continue to Shuamta and the monasteries of Dzveli and Akhali before returning to Tblisi.
Day 5 Today visit one of the oldest cities in Georgia, Mtsheka. After a guided tour of Mtsheka, continue to the mountain resort of Gudauri, then through the Jvari Pass to Gergeti and the Gergeti Holy Trinity Church.
Day 6 Drive across the border into Armenia to the mountain town of Dilijan and the 13th century Haghartsin Monastery. Continue to Sevan Monastery on the shores of Lake Sevan. Overnight in Yerevan.
Day 7 A full day exploring Yerevan, including the President's Palace, the State University, the Genocide Memorial and Museum, the Opera House and Matenadaran (deposit of ancient manuscripts).
Day 8 Guided tour of Etchmiadzin, the spiritual and administrative centre of the Armenian Apostolic Church. Visit the remains of the last pagan temple in Armenia en-route to the 12th century Monastery of St Geghard, carved out of solid rock.
Day 9 This morning visit Khor Virap Monastery with Mt Ararat towering above it. St Gregory the Illuminator was imprisoned here in a dungeon for 13 years. Drive to the remote Noravank Monastery and then visit Areni Winery where the local wines can be sampled.
Day 10 Transfer to Yerevan airport for the return flight to the UK.
All tours are tailored to your requirements
Holiday Inn Hotel, Tblisi
Conveniently located near a metro station with links to the rest of the city. All rooms are air-conditioned and have private facilities, complimentary WIFI internet access, flat screen television, safety deposit box, telephone, hair dryer and tea/coffee making facilities.
• Lifts to all floor • Contemporary style
• Swimming pools
Metropol Hotel, Yerevan
The 4 star Metropol is a perfect base from which to explore the sights of Armenia's capital. Located on Mashtots Avenue , this hotel is only a 15 minute drive from the international airport and within walking distance of many historic sites. The hotel has a popular restaurant, health club and swimming pool available to guests.
• 4 star • Swimming pool • Central location
Your tour includes:
• Return flights
• 4 nights bed and breakfast in Tblisi,
• 1 night bed and breakfast in Telavi
• 4 nights bed and breakfast in Yerevan
• Lunch every day
• Excursions and admissions as detailed in the itinerary
• English speaking guide
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