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Itinerary

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Tour Itinerary

Watch arid landscapes give way to verdant hillsides and snow-capped mountains on this 15-day Premium adventure through Azerbaijan, Georgia and Armenia. Explore a land where the walls speak of centuries of rich history and where ancient traditions intersect with modern geopolitics. Journey with an expert local leader and a small group of keen adventurers through forests, past tall mountain peaks, to cultural marvels. Taste the delectable cuisine and experience the local hospitality with plenty of opportunity to rub shoulders with the locals. Wander through cosmopolitan Baku, make friends in Tbilisi and end up in Yerevan - Armenia's centre of culture.

Countries Visited

Armenia , Azerbaijan , Georgia

Cities Visited

Akhaltsikhe , Baku , Mtskheta , Sighnaghi , Tbilisi , Yerevan

  1. Day 1
    Baku
    Salam eleykim! Welcome to Azerbaijan. When you arrive at Baku Airport, you'll be met by a representative and transferred to your hotel. Baku is where ancient fortified buildings stand next to Russian imperial-style squares and ultra-modern architectural wonders. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm tonight, where you’ll meet your local leader and fellow travellers. If you arrive with time to spare, maybe walk down Nizami Street and observe its Baroque, Neo-Gothic and Neo-Renaissance architecture. After your meeting, head out for a local dinner with your newfound companions.
    Meals:   Dinner
  2. Day 2
    Baku
    This morning, embark on a tour of the city with a local guide. Visit the fortified Old City, once the Medieval capital, where your guide will weave together the history of Baku, from the rule of the Shirvanshahs to the cosmopolitan city you see today. Stop by the Shemakha Gate, Maiden Tower (visit optional), Old Market Square and end with a guided tour of the Palace of the Shirvanshahs. Be sure to bring your camera as there will be some panoramic views of Baku's varied skyline. The rest of the day is free to explore at your own pace.
    Meals:   Breakfast
  3. Day 3
    Qobustan / Baku
    This morning, head out of the city on a half day trip to Qobustan, about 60 km south of Baku. Stop off along the way to view old oil rigs and learn how Azerbaijan was one of the birthplaces of the oil industry. Visit Qobustan National Park and one of the world's largest open-air archaeological museums, where a local guide will share the stories of ancient rock art dating back some 40,000 years. The prehistoric carvings depict scenes of hunting, fishing and gathering. Return to Baku in the afternoon for free time. Maybe visit one of Baku's most significant modern landmarks – the Heydar Aliyev Center designed by Zaha Hadid. This evening, you might like to take a walk along the waterfront to find a restaurant for dinner, keeping an eye out for the Baku Eye and Flame Towers that light up the city skyline at night.
    Meals:   Breakfast
  4. Day 4
    Shamaki / Sheki
    Leave Baku and head for the Caucasus Mountains in the northwest of Azerbaijan. Watch arid landscapes slowly give way to densely forested mountains. Along the way, you’ll stop at the Yeddi Gumbaz Mausoleum and the Juma Mosque in Shamakhi. When you arrive in Sheki, visit a local craft workshop where the famous shebeke (stained-glass windows with intricately carved frames) are made by hand. You’ll also visit the acclaimed Palace of Shaki Khans to see its magnificent frescoes and stained glass. Enjoy a final evening of Azerbaijani cuisine during an included dinner at a local restaurant.
    Meals:   Breakfast   Dinner
  5. Day 5
    Sheki / Kakheti Region / Telavi
    Have breakfast at the hotel before driving to Lagodekhi – a town at the Azerbaijan–Georgia border where you’ll change transportation. From here, travel to Georgia's Kakheti region, known for its winemaking. Have lunch with a local wine making family, which includes delicious homemade cuisine, wine and chacha (a local brandy). There will also be time to listen to unique Georgian polyphonic songs – a traditional style of music prevalent in the Kakheti region. After, travel to your beautiful accommodation near Telavi, tucked into the foothills of the Tsiv-Gombori mountains. Your hotel has a swimming pool, a marvellous on-site restaurant and unbeatable views of the Alazani Valley and Caucasus mountains.
    Meals:   Breakfast   Dinner
  6. Day 6
    Telavi/Tbilisi
    Following breakfast, explore the famous Telavi Bazaar. Wander through stalls selling fresh produce and aromatic spices as your leader picks out some local specialties for you to try. After snacking your way through the market, drive to Tbilisi. You’re free to explore at your own pace when you arrive, so you might like to wander the old districts of Georgia’s capital to see the colourful houses, patterned balconies and revamped modern architecture. Your leader will always have some great restaurant recommendations ready for dinner.
    Meals:   Breakfast
  7. Day 7
    Tbilisi
    This morning you’ll head out on a walking tour with a local guide, which includes the 13th-century Metekhi Church and amazing views over old Tbilisi. Take a cable car to the ancient Narikala Fortress – a former Persian citadel with a history stretching back to the 4th century. Here, your guide will share the layered history of the fortress while you take in sweeping views across Tbilisi. Then make your way to a historic part of the city where you’ll learn a little more about Tbilisi’s past. The name translates to ‘warm place,’ which is thought to be after the bubbling hot springs the city was built around. This afternoon, maybe visit one of the local bathhouses for a dip.
    Meals:   Breakfast
  8. Day 8
    Mtskheta / Tserovani / Borjomi
    Today, you’ll visit Mtskheta – the ancient capital and religious centre of Georgia. Visit World Heritage-listed sites with your local guide as they share fascinating histories. After, visit the Tserovani Refugee Settlement – home to 8000 people displaced by the 2008 conflict between the Russian Federation and the Republic of Georgia over South Ossetia. While here you’ll visit an enamel jewellery workshop run by a social enterprise offering training and employment to displaced youth and women within the settlement. Meet the artists whose pieces tell the story of Georgia, and with their guidance, maybe even design a piece for yourself. Have a light lunch, then tour the settlement to learn about the issues surrounding long-term displacement faced by thousands of Georgia’s citizens. In the afternoon, drive to Borjomi Spa Town, famous for its naturally fizzy mineral water. Stay overnight at your Feature Stay hotel here, located in the former residence of the Iranian consul in a building with almost 130 years of history.
    Meals:   Breakfast   Dinner
  9. Day 9
    Vardzia / Borjomi
    Today, drive to the once mighty cave city of Vardzia, with a stop along the way at the 10th-century Khertvisi Fortress. Vardzia stretches over half a kilometre along the river Mtkvari and has 19 tiers of winding cobbled streets. There is a church hewn out in rock with 12th-century frescos and the complex also includes dwelling quarters, small hall-type churches, refectories and wine cellars. Tour the site with a local guide who will provide historical context and explain the rise and fall of the city, which now serves as a working monastery. Head back to Borjomi for the evening, and maybe ask your leader to recommend the tastiest Georgian dishes for dinner, like khinkali (spicy dumplings) or tatarberaki (a local Meskhetian version of pasta).
    Meals:   Breakfast
  10. Day 10
    Gori/ Gudauri
    In the morning you’ll visit Gori – the birthplace of Joseph Stalin. Your leader will take you on a city tour before you visit the Stalin Museum. See the sites of Gori, including The Memorial of Georgian War Heroes and Gori Fortress, and delve into its artistic side to see traditional ornamental mosaics. After, drive the renowned Georgian Military Highway, which eventually leads to the Georgia–Russia border. On the way, you'll visit the Ananuri architectural complex – two churches and a fortress that overlook the Zhinvali water reservoir. Your leader will explain how the carvings on the churches are some of the best surviving examples of Georgian art. Take a scenic drive through the Caucasus Mountains and arrive at your hotel in Gudauri, where you’ll have dinner with the group.
    Meals:   Breakfast   Dinner
  11. Day 11
    Caucasus Mountains / Stepantsminda / Gudauri
    Enjoy a scenic drive from Gudauri along the Tergi River before arriving in Stepantsminda. From here, head into the heart of the Caucasus Mountains, hop in 4WDs and take the mountain road to Gergeti Trinity Church, 2170 m above sea level. Weather depending, you may catch a glimpse of Mt Kazbegi. On the way back to Gudauri, stop at the small village of Sno to explore the local version of Easter Island – a park with half a dozen massive stone heads representing famous figures of Georgian history. Return to Gudauri this afternoon for some free time – the perfect opportunity to enjoy the mountain air and views. Your hotel has many facilities, including a wellness centre.
    Meals:   Breakfast   Dinner
  12. Day 12
    Haghpat/ Dzoraget
    Have breakfast in Gudauri before driving to Sadakhlo – a village at the Georgia–Armenia border. On the way to the border, stop in Tbilisi to break the journey and have lunch. Continue to Armenia and after completing all the formalities, begin the Armenian leg of your adventure with a visit to Haghpat Monastery, listed as a World Cultural Heritage Site. Haghpat stands as an example of one of the most outstanding works of medieval Armenian architecture and your leader will give you an introduction to the country’s history and design. Continue to Dzoraget, where you’ll spend the night surrounded by views of the Debed River.
    Meals:   Breakfast   Dinner
  13. Day 13
    Lake Sevan / Garni / Geghard / Yerevan
    After breakfast, you'll meet your Armenian driver and local guide and drive to the reflective waters of Lake Sevan, nicknamed ‘The Pearl of Armenia’. Sevan is one of the largest fresh-water high-altitude lakes in the world. Visit Sevanavank Monastery, which overlooks the water on the Peninsula. Move on to the village of Garni to visit the first century Garni Temple, where your guide will explain how it was built by the Armenian King Tiridates and dedicated to Mithra, the God of the Sun. Be treated to a special local performance in the temple and hear the magnificent sounds of the Duduk – a flute-like instrument originating in Armenia and currently listed on the UNESCO in-tangible Cultural Heritage List. Travel northeast of Garni, higher up the gorge of the Azat River, to the magnificent Geghard Monastery. This UNESCO World Heritage-listed site is partly carved out of a mountain and surrounded by cliffs. In the afternoon, drive to Armenia’s capital, Yerevan, where you’ll spend the next two evenings.
    Meals:   Breakfast
  14. Day 14
    Yerevan
    This morning your local guide will introduce you to the sights and sounds of Yerevan on a tour of the city. Established in 782 BC, Armenia’s capital is one of the oldest cities in the world. Nowadays, the city’s liveliness comes from its ancient culture mixed with a modern lifestyle. Visit the Armenian Genocide Museum to learn the tragic history of this region, then the afternoon is free for reflection or further exploration. Tonight, join your group for a final dinner at a local restaurant. Armenian cuisine is built on a foundation of fresh local produce and meat. Maybe try some khorovats (a barbecued kebab) or spas (a refreshing yoghurt soup).
    Meals:   Breakfast   Dinner
  15. Day 15
    Yerevan
    Your adventure comes to an end after breakfast this morning. If you would like to spend some more time in Yerevan, just speak to your booking agent ahead of time to organise additional accommodation.
    Meals:   Breakfast

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Inclusions

  • Baku - Welcome Dinner at Local Restaurant
  • Complimentary Arrival Transfer
  • Baku - Palace of the Shirvanshahs
  • Baku - Walking Tour with Local Guide
  • Qobustan - Petroglyphs
  • Qobustan - Half Day Trip
  • Sheki - Khan's Palace
  • Sheki - Stained Glass Workshop Visit
  • Shamakhi - Yeddi Gumbaz Mausoleum & Juma Mosque
  • Kakheti - Lunch and Wine Tasting with a Local Family
  • Kakheti - Georgian Polyphonic Singing
  • Telavi - Market Tour with Tastings
  • Tbilisi - Narikala Fortress & Cable Car
  • Tbilisi - Old Town Walking Tour with Local Guide
  • Tbilisi - Anchiskhati Church
  • Tbilisi - Sioni Cathedral
  • Tserovani - Refugee Settlement & Enamel Workshop Visit
  • Mtskheta - Jvari Monastery
  • Mtskheta - Svetitskhoveli Cathedral
  • Meskheti - Khertvisi Fortress
  • Vardzia - Cave Town Visit with Local Guide
  • Ananuri - Architectural Complex
  • Gori - Stalin Museum
  • Gori - City Tour
  • Stepantsminda - Gergeti Trinity Church
  • Stepantsminda - Caucasus Mountains Day Trip
  • Haghpat - Haghpat Monastery
  • Geghard - Geghard Monastery
  • Lake Sevan - Sevanavank Monastery
  • Garni - Temple Visit & Duduk Performance
  • Yerevan - City Tour with Local Guide
  • Yerevan - Armenian Genocide Memorial Complex

Meals
14 Breakfast(s) Included
3 Lunch(es) Included
5 Dinner(s) Included

Style: Premium

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Accommodations

Comfortable Hotel (12 nights), Feature Stay (2 night)

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Questions & Answers

Question: How many suitcases can I take with me on my trip?

Each person is allowed one "check-in," and one "carry-on." Remember to take all valuables with you as "carry-on", because electronic equipment, cameras, laptops, jewelry, business documents and money are not covered by the airlines' liability, so always carry them aboard with you.

Question: Is Airfare Included in the Price?

Airfare from your point of origin to and from the trip is not included in the land price.

Customer Reviews

Overall Rating
4.6
Accommodations
4.1
Itinerary
4.7
Professional Staff
4.7
Repeat with Operator
4.7
Value for Money
4.7

Ratings based off 7 reviews - currently showing 2 reviews with comments only

The trip was more interesting than I expected. I highly recommend visiting this beautiful Caucasian region..

This was an amazing, wonderful experience. I believe that our tour leader, Anton, did an exceptional job making this such a terrific experience for us. Nothing was too difficult for him and even though some of the people on the trip were a little obnoxious at times he did a superb job.

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