Useful info
Tour Guide for You
 

Tour Guide for You

What to do?

§  Hiking

§  Rock Climbing

§  Wind Surfing

§  Sun Baking

§  Camping

§  Skiing

§  Monastery hopping

hiking in armenia

What to see?

Consider seeing churches and other religious buildings, that are built more than 1700 years ago. Such constructions are almost everywhere. One particularly interesting Church is in Khor Virap, located a short drive from Yerevan. Close to the Armenian-Turkish border, this ancient monastery is a perfect place to observe Mount Ararat in its full beauty.

khor virap

What to eat?

Khorovats (BBQ) which can be pork, lamb, chicken or beef. Usually, it is flavored with onions and other Armenian spices. Tomatoes, eggplant and bell peppers are also part of the khorovats meal.

Borscht is a vegetable soup. It is traditionally made with beetroot as a main ingredient, which gives it a strong red color. It is usually served warm with fresh sour cream.

Khash is a traditional dish, originating in the Shirak region. Formerly a nutritious winter food for the rural poor, it is now considered a delicacy, and is enjoyed as a festive winter meal.

Dolma (stuffed grape leaves; a variety with stuffed cabbage leaves, bell peppers and eggplants) also exists.

Armenian fruits and vegetables are special. One should definitely try them and will never forget the taste of Armenian apricot, peach, grapes, pomegranate, etc.

Armenian bread is very tasty as well. There is a wide range of different types of bread, starting from black and white till lavash (a soft, thin flatbread) and matnaqash.

Don’t miss trying milk products! Along with ordinary milk products, there are some traditional and really tasty and refreshing ones. Matsun (yogurt) is a traditional Armenian dairy product that has centuries of history. It contains a number of natural microelements, which have high biochemical activity. It’s really refreshing, especially when you try it cold during hot summers. Okroshka - cold soup with kefir and cucumber and dill; it is a healthy and refreshing dairy product. Spas is really tasty hot kefir soup with grains in it.

Café culture rules in Armenia, and the best places to have a cup of coffee and people-watch are sidewalk cafés. Any place near the Opera is certain to be jumping late into the summer nights.

khorovats

What to drink?

Alcoholic: Vodka, tutti oghi (mulberry vodka), honi oghi (cornelian cherry vodka), Tsirani oghi (apricot vodka), local beer (Kilikia, Kotayk, Gumri), wine (can also be made of pomegranate), and brandy.

Other: Tan (yogurt combined with water and salt), Jermuk (mineral water), masuri hyut (rose hip juice), chichkhani hyut (sea buckthorne juice), bali hyut (sour cherry juice), Armenian coffee, and herbal teas.

What to buy?

Armenian carpets, cognac, fruits, handicrafts and Soviet memorabilia are some of the most popular things people take home from Armenia. Most of these are plentiful at Vernissage, a seemingly never-ending weekend flea market next to Republic Square with the more touristy stuff in the back half, further from Republic Square. 

armenian carpets

Puchasing costums

Bargaining is uncommon in Armenian stores, though when purchasing expensive items or bulk, they may be amenable to it. In markets, however, bargaining is a must!

Tipping is increasingly common in Armenia, especially at cafes and restaurants. Many Armenians will simply round up their checks, or leave ten percent. Some café staff are only compensated in the tips they earn, though you cannot always tell by the service they provide. Many restaurants have begun to charge a ten percent “service fee” which they usually do not share with the waiters, and it is not clear for what it is used. This fee is often not clearly stated on the menu, so you should ask if you want to know. Tipping is usually not expected in taxis, but again, rounding up is not uncommon.

Tax-Included in prices (except sometimes hotels).

Markets

Vernissage - every Saturday near Republic Square, there is an open market with great shopping for tourists and locals alike. You can buy everything from a 300-year-old carpet to a 1970s Soviet phone to Russian nesting dolls.

The "covered market" on Mashtots Street has fresh fruits and vegetables along with great dried fruits.

vernisage

Smoke

Smoking is illegal in many public places. But bear that in mind that Armenia has the highest rate of cigarette smoking in Europe. Open air cafes will generally have a smoking area; if you see an ashtray on the table, you can smoke there.

Stay healty

As with any traveling experience, eat well, but do not overeat. If you are dining with Armenians, they will feed you until you cannot eat any more. The food is generally safe, even from the roadside khorovats stands. There is little worry about food safety in Armenia.

The tap water is generally safe, as it comes directly from mountains, but you may also purchase bottled water. You can get both mineral water with gas and normal spring water on almost every street corner. This water is available in both the rural areas and the capital.

Stay safe

Overall, Yerevan is not a dangerous city. Theft and pickpocketing are not unheard of, particularly targeting foreigners; utmost care is essential. Use common sense when walking on the street at night, especially after drinking. There are well known scams operating on some ATM machines, particularly those accepting VISA cards, where no money is issued but the cash is nonetheless withdrawn from the account.

There are also people at the Zvartnost airtport who ask you if you need a taxi. They escort you to one of them and claim that they are airport taxis which cost two or three times more than regular taxis. Never trust those people, even if they have already put your luggage in the trunk! You can find a taxi which costs 2000-3000 AMD instead ~10 000 AMD they are asking. That's definitely a scam and many tourists have fallen into that trick.

Public Transportation

Metro -100 AMD per ride

Bus and trolleybus -100 / 50 AMD per ride

Microbus routs, known by Russian expression of “Marshroutni” -100 AMD per ride

Telephone taxi –Probably this is the most inexpensive taxi system in the world. Avarage ride costs 600-800AMD per ride within the central part of the city.

Regular Taxis- There are taxi stands at major and busy intersections. Fares are subject to negotiation and are higher than Telephone Taxis.

"ZVARTNOTS" International Airport 

Yerevan "Zvartnots” Airport representing the main air gate of the Republic of Armenia has been operating since 1961.
"Zvartnots” Airport envisioned handling of the flights operated solely on the territory of the former USSR.
On 1985 ICAO Granted the airport the second class.
Under the concession agreement signed between the RA Government and Argentinean "Corporacion America” Company, from June 2002 "Zvartnots” International Airport has been handed over to "Armenia” International Airports” CJSC concession management for the period of 30 years.
To make the Airport meet the international standards its runway was fully repaired, safety, information and check-in new systems were installed, VIP lounges repaired and the construction of the new passenger terminal, the arrival hall of which was introduced to operation on September 14, 2006, started. The departure hall of the new passenger terminal was introduced into operation on May 25, 2007.
In Spring 2008, the construction of the new passenger terminal of public zone has initiated, the termination of which is anticipated in 2011. In the new passenger terminal with the territory of 52.000 sqm, the passenger check-in counters and security control points will be doubled. A new underground parking will be built, with parking area for more than 800 cars. When this terminal is accomplished, "Zvartnots” International Airport will become number one airport in South Caucasus.
Navigation system installed in the airdrome provides the meteorological minima of 30x350m for landing, which corresponds to the ICAO 2nd class.