Most of us might have heard about Armenia as one of the ancient Christian civilization but Armenia as a country is more than that. Situated between Europe and Asia, this Eurasian country is combined with beauty, culture, heritage, and history. A small country which is easier for us Indians to travel. It is also one of the cheapest trips that we have done.
Armenia is visa on arrival for Indians. We traveled by road from Tbilisi to Armenia since we had planned our trip in such a way. You can also travel by flight and land in Yerevan which is the capital of Armenia. The idea is to stay in Yerevan throughout your trip and travel by road to most of the tourist destinations that are mostly located on the outskirts of Yerevan. We always make sure to try booking a hotel near the main square. In Armenia, it is the famous Republic Square. It is always easy to wander around from the Republic Square and to find different travel agencies that can take you to the places you want to visit. We were there in Armenia for 3 nights and we tried to cover most of the areas.
We were lucky enough to find the City Tour Office right next to the Republic Square. The team there did an excellent job of helping us out with the tour. They have got various packages that you can pick and they will accordingly plan out your day.
On the first day, we decided to wander around the Yerevan city on foot. Yerevan is a vibrant city with a lot of ancient and modern architecture. The people of Armenia are extremely sweet and helping. We walked around for a couple of hours and just explored the Northern Avenue Pedestrian Street which is a premium shopping street in Yerevan. We also came across a lot of parks and the Opera House where you will find a lot of locals, tourists chilling and lounging in one of the cafes that is is situated in the parks.
The Republic square is surrounded by beautiful architectures such as the Museum, beautiful water fountain and a lot of massive architectural structures. The Republic Square is a pleasure to the eyes, especially during night time. The dancing fountain starts around 10 pm and plays continuously for about an hour with beautiful lights and music. It is a treat to watch.
Make sure you visit the National Museum and understand the ancient history and culture of Armenia. There are a lot of museums in Yerevan and some of the Museums you can visit is the National Museum, Book Museum where you will get to see the smallest and the biggest Bible in the world, and also the Genocide Memorial Museum.
Make sure to also visit the cascade with white stairs that lead to the Grim Soviet Monument. If you are a lover of meat, then you should try the local Armenian cuisine. You will find a lot of cafes and restaurants in the Yerevan city that you will enjoy.
One of the most important things and you should definitely not miss is the Ararat Cognac Tour. Ararat is a well known and famous cognac and if you are interested in the brandy making process then this is a must. You will also get to taste the famous Ararat cognac after the tour. Brandy making is an art and to understand the process and the passion that goes into making a bottle is really interesting.
These are some of the things that you can do in Yerevan and can do it in either one or two days.
One of the days, you can visit Lake Sevan. We had traveled by road from Tbilisi to Yerevan and we were fortunate enough to see the beautiful lakes on our way and hence, we did not do a separate trip to the lakes.
But you must visit other places that are located on outskirts of Yerevan and different regions in Armenia. These places have a lot of history and heritage and of course, a lot of beautiful monasteries since Armenia is the ancient Christian civilization that was formed.
Garni is one such place that is located on the outskirts of Yerevan. Garni is one of the villages in Armenia. It is famous for the Garni Temple (Pagan Temple) or fortress. It was built during the pre- Christian period in Armenia dedicated to the Sun God. The guide will tell you some amusing stories about this temple which might surprise you.
You will also visit the Ghegard temple which is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is one of the temples/monastery that was built in the 4th Century. You will be in awe admiring the stonework and to know the history of this temple.
Armenia is a perfect blend of modernization and ancient history. The landscapes are gorgeous and stories are interesting. The food and the people are amazing. Make sure you enjoy the delicious Armenian wine and the very famous Ararat cognac when you visit restaurants.