Georgia & Armenia Explorer

Upcoming Tour Date:

  • 10 October–20 October 2020 – Just added
11 days
from £2,379 pp
Tour code: AGT1048

Tour Features:

    Book Now

    Upcoming Tour Date:

    • 10 October–20 October 2020 – Just added
    11 days
    from £2,379 pp
    Tour code: AGT1048

    Tour Features:

      Booking Enquiries

      Quick Tour Facts:


      Tour Code AGT1149
      Max Group Size 20
      Single Supplement £350
      Start/End Point Yerevan / Tbilisi
      Tour Manager Leonie Loudon – Read Bio

      Tour Map:


      Extras and Add-ons:


      Would you prefer to fly from your local airport or spend a few days at the end of your tour on the beach? We are happy to help you arrange any additional requirements you may have from airport parking and hotels to pre and post tour hotel stays. Whilst the majority of our tours use group flights from London airports it is often possible to offer regional departures or connections – give us a call on 01425 480600 and let us help make your trip as comfortable as possible.

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      Existing on the fringes of our continent and featuring the roof of Europe in the Caucasus mountain ranges, Georgia & Armenia prove that adventure is still nearby. From Yerevan to Tbilisi, uncover the spirit of the wild Caucasus and the people who have lived here for thousands of years on this in-depth journey.

      Nestled between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea, the countries of the Caucasus are home to Europe’s largest mountain, Elbrus, where the titan Prometheus was imprisoned by Zeus. Standing at approximately 19,000 feet, this imposing dormant volcano looms over some of the oldest Christian lands in the world. Both Georgia and Armenia sit on a crossroad of Christian and Eastern cultures and because of this, these highland countries have a long and bloody history of conflict. They boast dramatic alpine landscapes which hide equally dramatic stories, from ancient times all the way through to the collapse of the Soviet Union.

      Our group has the chance to journey from one of the world’s oldest inhabited cities, Yerevan, to vibrant Tbilisi. Along the way, we will see such highlights as the impressive rock-hewn monastery of Geghard, the Hellenistic temple of Garni, the rugged landscape of Vardzia, cave monasteries, and the stunning frescoes in Gelati monastery, to mention a few. A traditional way of life still pervades through the valleys of these countries, and our group will have plenty of opportunities to admire the folklore and cuisine hidden behind every mountain — and with one of the world’s oldest viticultures (dating back almost 8,000 years), this cultural feast is likely to be washed down with a glass or two of fine wine.

      Words from Your Tour Coordinator…

      “The region of the Caucasus has long been on my ‘must-visit’ list. A group of people that has existed on the geopolitical stage for thousands of years, yet in their recent reincarnation through the collapse of the Soviet Empire, these are fresh and young sovereign states. Surrounded by some hostile neighbours and their often authoritarian leaders, these fledgling democracies are striving to establish themselves on the world stage once again. Part of this development is a desire to bring in tourism, and I was proud to lead our first tour here in 2018. I was not disappointed.

      Our partners in Georgia recently organised all of the arrangements for Joanna Lumley on her Silk Road Adventure, including special access to see some off-limits 10th and 12th century frescos, an honour also enjoy by our guests. In addition, our partners also helped with arrangements for Jeremy Clarkson’s series, The Grand Tour. It is fair to say that our groups are in safe hands.”

      Alexander Oliver

      Highlights

      • Take in the sights of Yerevan, one of the world’s oldest inhabited cities
      • Visit the impressive cave dwellings and monastery at 12th century Vardzia
      • Enjoy serenity and wonderful frescoes at the monastery of Gelati
      • Explore the quirky centre of old town Tbilisi, Georgia’s charming and colourful capital
      • View the breath-taking mountain backdrops including Svaneti in Georgia and Mt Ararat in Armenia

      What’s Included

      • Return flights from London Gatwick, outbound to Yerevan and inbound from Tbilisi
      • Ten nights’ accommodation in good standard hotels
      • Daily breakfast, lunch and evening meal
      • All excursions, entrance fees and tips
      • All overseas transport and English-speaking guides
      • Services of a Prestige Holidays Tour Manager

      Itinerary

      Day 1 - Arrival (D)

      Arrival. Transfer to Yerevan and enjoy a snack dinner at the hotel.

      Overnight: Yerevan

      Day 2 - Yerevan / Kotayk / Garni / Geghard (B, L, D)

      Explore Yerevan, one of the world’s oldest inhabited cities. Visit the main sites the city has to offer, including the Matenadaran, which holds rich depositories of medieval manuscripts. Drive into the region of Kotayk with photo stops at some stunning sites, including the Arch of Charents which overlooks Yerevan and Mt Ararat. From here visit the Greco-Roman styled Garni temple and then explore your inner Indiana Jones at the rock-hewn monastery of Geghard.

      Overnight: Yerevan

      Day 3 - Ararat / Vayots Dzor / Areni (B, L)

      Spend a day in the region of Ararat to visit Khor Virap Monastery. From modern Armenia, this is the closest point for viewing Biblical Mt. Ararat, the supposed resting place of Noah’s Ark. From here, continue to the region of Vayots Dzor, well known for its centuries-old winemaking traditions where the village of Areni has become the flagship of Armenia’s burgeoning wine industry today.

      Overnight: Yerevan

      Day 4 - Ashtarak / Aghdzk / Gyumri (B, L, D)

      Pass through scenic Ashtarak town for a coffee stop before continuing to mystical Agarak, its landscape dotted with large rock and stone carved complexes, the majority of which relate to early Bronze Age settlements. Visit the funerary complex in Aghdzk before lunch. This afternoon, explore Armenia’s city of Gyumri, which possesses the largest collection of authentic 18-19th century Armenian architecture.

      Overnight: Gyumri



      Day 5 - Javakheti Plateau / Vardzia / Borjomi (B, L, D)

      Continue across the bleak Javakheti Plateau towards the Georgian border, an area abundant with wildlife to admire, especially birds of prey.
      Once in Georgia, one of the highlights of the tour is a visit to the impressive 12th century Vardzia cave settlement. Here, explore a warren of cave dwellings, subterranean passageways and the atmospheric monastery, all which are redolent of the past.

      Overnight: Borjomi

      Day 6 - Zaliko Bojadze / Mestia (B, L, D)

      Visit one of the last remaining qvevri makers, Zaliko Bojadze, continuing the traditions of crafting these amphora-esque gigantic clay vessels. Drive through stunning scenery to the remote town of Mestia in the unique Svaneti Region.

      Overnight: Mestia

      Day 7 - Mestia (B, L, D)

      Visit the nearby Museum of History, which offers an intriguing exhibition of archaeology, ethnography and Christian art, including golden coins from the armies of Alexander the Great. Continue to explore this wonderful town, dotted with monolithic tower houses. Highlights include a visit to an original 12th century Svan house, arranged special access to a 10th century church with some of Europe’s oldest frescoes, and some traditional Svan hospitality with a polyphonic choir.

      Overnight: Mestia

      Day 8 - Gelati / Kutaisi (B, L, D)

      Visit the scenic UNESCO site of the Gelati academy and monastery. Dating back to the 12th century, the monastery boasts some of the most stunning frescoes in all of Georgia.

      Overnight: Kutaisi

      Day 9 - Katshki Monastery / Chiatura / Imereti / Uplastsikhe / Tbilisi (B, L, D)

      Photo stop at the iconic Katskhi Monastery before reaching the famous mining town of Chiatura, one of the Soviet era’s most industrial cities. Continue through the highland region of Imereti to explore the heart of Georgia’s ancient viticulture in some 17th century wine cellars. Finally, en route to Tbilisi, visit Uplistsikhe, an ancient cave settlement first mentioned in chronicles dating from the first century AD. Carved into the rocky plateau, you will find huge echoing halls, long meandering streets, chambers for pagan worship and the remains of Georgia’s oldest theatre.

      Overnight: Tbilisi

      Day 10 - Tbilisi (B, L, D)

      A comprehensive city tour of Tbilisi, the charming and colourful capital of Georgia. Spend the afternoon strolling through the city with visits to the Art Palace and the National Museum of History, which boasts a wonderful collection of golden artefacts from pre-Christian Georgia.

      Overnight: Tbilisi

      Day 11 - Departure (B)

      Transfer to the airport for departure.

      Prestige Holidays’ booking conditions apply. Price is based on twin/double occupancy. Single rooms are on request at a supplement of £350 — subject to availability. Itinerary may be subject to slight alterations due to operational restrictions. Hotels are subject to change and a hotel of similar standard in the overnight locations may be provided. Flight times are provisional and subject to change due to airline schedules.

      Call us today on 01425 480 600