Garni Temple, Geghard Monastery, Tsaghkadzor Ropeway, Kecharis Monastery

Garni Temple, Geghard Monastery, Tsaghkadzor Ropeway, Kecharis Monastery

Duration: 7-8 hours / Mileage: 190 km

Comprising two directions at once, this private tour is a perfect choice for those who have planned a short trip around Armenia. The first stop is going to be at the only pagan temple in Armenia – Garni, and at 20-minutes’ drive from the temple you will be amazed by the magnificence of the 13th century Geghard monastic complex, partially carved in the rock and included in the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage List. In Tsaghkadzor visits of Kecharis monastic complex and a cable car to go up the slope of Mount Teghenis (from where there opens a picturesque view of the mountain ranges of the region) are foreseen.

The monument “Arch of Charents” was created by architect Raphael Israelyan. One day on his way to Garni he stopped at this place and, noticing that a picturesque view opens from there to the Mount Ararat, he decided to build an arch as a “temple” to Ararat. The Arch was constructed in 1957, on occasion of the 60th anniversary of the great Armenian poet Yeghishe Charents. It is said, that the poet was also fond of walking around this place. It is like a picture frame, from where a mesmerizing view opens to the Ararat valley with Masis floating in distance. The following words completing Charents’ famous poem are carved on the front aperture along the arch:

“There is no summit as snow-white as that of lofty Ararat;
Like an inaccessible path to glory, I love my Mount Masis!”

You can make here stunning pictures against the backdrop of the Arch and Mountain Ararat, only the weather should be clear.

Geghard monastery is the unsurpassable masterpiece of the 13th century Armenian architecture. Some of the churches of the complex are masterfully hewn in a huge rock. From the outset the complex was called Ayrivank (cave monastery), later it was renamed Geghard (lance) as the lance, used by the roman soldier to sting Jesus Christ’s side, had been kept in this monastery for many centuries. Due to its construction, Geghardavank serves the best place for singing spiritual songs. The complex is rich in subtle sculptural embellishments and many striking khachkars (cross-stones). The site is included in UNESCO World Cultural Heritage List.

Garni temple, which towers over a triangular cape, is the unique survived example of heathen culture in Armenia. It is a blend of Greco-Roman and Armenian styles. King Trdat The First ordered building the temple in the first century AD and dedicated it to the God of Sun. After adopting Christianity in 301, the pagan temple lost its significance and the fortress of Garni became the summer residence of the kings. Nowadays the ruins of the royal palace and the bathroom with a stunning mosaic work can be found near the temple.

Tsaghkadzor city (translated as valley of flowers) is considered to be one of the most popular winter resorts of Armenia. It is one of the places of our mountainous country, where the beauty of the nature appears with its whole variety. Tsaghkadzor is situated in Kotayk region, 60 km north from Yerevan, on the eastern slope of Teghenis Mountain, surrounded with virginal woods and alpine meadows.

Azat Reservoir (1050 m above sea level) is located in Ararat province. It was put into operation in the year of 1976 with the aim of being used for irrigation of the Ararat Valley. The area makes 2.85 sq. km, while the total volume is 70 million cubic m. The reservoir is surrounded by mountains and within many years it has kept admiring visitors. The reflection of the Sun/Moon combined with clouds in water “spreads” a unique impression.

Kecharis monastery is in the north-western part of Tsaghkadzor. It was built in 11-13th centuries. The monastery consists of four churches and a half-destroyed mausoleum of Grigorius Pahlavuni, who financed the building of the monastery.

Price per person

Number of people

Price

1-1

92 USD

2-2

46 USD

3-3

40 USD

4-4

30 USD

5-5

25 USD

6-6

20 USD

Inclusions

  • Professional drivers
  • Air-conditioned vehicles
  • Bottled water
  • Free pick-up & drop-off within Yerevan
  • Vehicle & passengers insurance
  • Extra stops on the route upon request

Exclusions

  • Significant deviations from the route
  •  
  • Alcoholic beverages if lunch option selected
  •  
  • Audio guides
  •  
  • WiFi in the vehicles

What to expect

  • Explore the 1st century pagan temple
  • Discover the legends of St. Lance used by the roman soldier to sting Jesus Christ’s side
  • Get acquainted with the architecture of 11th-13th centuries
  • Observe the picturesque mountain ranges

Booking

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