12 Days 11 Nights
Our 12-day tour will take you to nearly every major attraction in Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Armenia. You will have the opportunity to learn everything there is to know about the Caucasus nations, their traditions and culture, their unique history, and, of course, their delectable cuisine.
Arrival in Baku. Pick up from the airport and transfer to your hotel. After some rest, begin your Baku city tour at Martyrs' Lane – The Eternal Flame Memorial, which leads to a panoramic viewpoint overlooking the entire city. Continue to the old part of town and see the main sights of Baku that are on the UNESCO World Heritage list: Shirvanshahs Palace, one of Azerbaijan's most important architectural monuments, and Maiden Tower, also known as Giz Galasi, which dates back to the 12th century. Explore the rest of the old city, including the Juma Mosque, the Double Gates, Bazar Square, and the Caravan Saray. Visit Nizami Street, Fountain Square, the Nizami Ganjavi monument, and one of Baku's most iconic landmarks, the Heydar Aliyev Center. Finally, make your way to Baku Boulevard to see the National Azeri Carpets Museum. Drop-off at your hotel.
Pick up from the hotel. Today we'll discover why Azerbaijan is known as "The Land of Fire." The tour begins on the Absheron peninsula with visits to two of Azerbaijan's most vivid examples of eternal fires:
In the morning, depart to Shamakhi. On the way, stop at Diri Baba Mausoleum in the Maraza settlement. The mausoleum carved into a rock was constructed in 1402. It is an impressive example of Shirvan architecture. Then, pay a visit to Shamakhi Juma Mosque, one of the most ancient mosques in Azerbaijan, built in the VIII century. Continue to the Yeddi Gumbaz mausoleum (Seven Domes) – a tomb of Shamakhi Khanate royal family members built in the 17-18th centuries. Drive to Lahich (Lahij), an ancient village founded in the third and fourth centuries B.C. that is located 1375 meters above sea level. Primarily known for its craftsmanship. Throughout the walking tour, you will come across many workshops where you can purchase handmade souvenirs, carpets, and other local products. Continue driving to Sheki, an ancient historical town located 300 kilometres northwest of Baku in a mountainous area. Spend the night at the hotel.
Begin your morning with a city tour of Sheki. Visit Sheki Khan's Palace, which was built in the XVIII century as Hussein-khan Mushtad's summer residence. It has magnificent wall paintings that are worth seeing. Proceed to Sheki Karavansaray and Sheki Bazaar. Finally, pay a visit to the ancient Albanian church in the Kish settlement, near Sheki town. Continue driving to the Azerbaijan-Georgia border. Cross the border, meet your Georgian driver and guide. Begin the Georgian part of the tour by visiting the Kakheti Region, the birthplace of wine. The first stop is at Khareba Winery - a unique wine cellar/tunnel carved deep within the Caucasus Mountains. Enjoy wine tour and tasting. Continue to Gremi fortress, which was built between the 15th and 16th centuries. The fortress now houses a church, a 15th-century tower palace, and a museum exhibiting site artefacts. Drive to Telavi, the largest town of Kakheti. Drop-off at the hotel.
In the morning, have a short tour around Telavi Visit Batonis Tsikhe, a museum dedicated to King Erekle II. Finally, pay a visit to the Giant Plane Tree, Telavi's one-of-a-kind attraction. Continue to Tsinandali. Visit the house-museum of Alexander Chavchavadze, a famous public figure and poet from the nineteenth century. At the time, Georgian nobles were known for their sophisticated European taste, as evidenced by the exquisite English Garden that surrounds the house. The house's wine cellar contains a unique selection of Georgian and European wines. You will be served a glass of Tsinandali white wine as a welcome gift. Drive to the Bodbe monastery, which was built in the IX century. It is currently used as a nunnery, but it also serves as a tourist attraction. The final stop for today is the famous city of love Sighnaghi, located on a hilltop with a panoramic view of the Alazani Valley. The remainder of the defensive wall, with 23 towers, is still standing around the town. Climb one of the towers and walk along the wall until you reach the next one. Drive to Tbilisi for overnight.
In the morning, begin Tbilisi sightseeing tour at Tbilisi's Holy Trinity Cathedral, Georgia's tallest church built between 1993 and 2004. It is also one of the largest religious structures in the world. Its magnificent golden dome can be seen from practically any point in Tbilisi. Continue to the old part of the city.
In the morning, head to Kazbegi. Along the way, stop by Jvari monastery, a UNESCO world heritage site erected in the sixth century on a hill overlooking the Aragvi and Mtkvari rivers' scenic confluence. Carry on to Ananuri Fortress. A magnificent complex consists of two churches with an ornately decorated façade, several towers, and defense walls. With a view of the Zhinvali reservoir in the background, all of these structures create a stunning panorama. Continue to Kazbegi on the Georgian Military Highway. Make photo stops at the Gudauri View Point, also known as the Friendship Monument, and the Jvari Overpass Travertine Natural Monument. Reach Stepantsminda. Hike or drive to Gergeti Holy Trinity Church to take in the breathtaking views of Mount Kazbek (5033 m). Drive back to Tbilisi. Drop off at your hotel.
In the morning, depart Tbilisi and drive to the Georgian-Armenian border. After crossing the border, you will be met by our Armenian guide and driver. Begin exploring Armenia with a visit to the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Haghpat and Sanahin monasteries in the Lori region. The two monasteries, constructed between the tenth and thirteenth centuries, represent the pinnacle of Armenian religious architecture. Drive to Lake Sevan, also known as the "Pearl of Armenia" by passing through luscious green fields bursting with thriving flowers and charming town of Dilijan. Located at an elevation of 1900 meters above sea level, Lake Sevan is one of the largest freshwater lakes in the world. Visit the Sevanavank monastery complex, which is located on a peninsula on Lake Sevan's northwestern shore. Enjoy breathtaking panoramic views from the complex. Drive to Yerevan for overnight.
Begin your sightseeing tour of Yerevan with the city's main symbol, the Cascade monument. A massive limestone stairway that provides breathtaking views of Yerevan and Mount Ararat. Wander around Yerevan's pink streets and see the Swan Lake, Republic Square, the Opera and Ballet Theater, the Northern Avenue, and so on. Continue to Matenadaran, the Institute of Ancient Manuscripts, which houses over 17,000 ancient and medieval manuscripts. Drive to the Armenian Genocide Memorial Complex on Tsitsernakaberd Hill. Optional: Visit to Megeryan Carpet factory or Yerevan Brandy Company.
In the morning, drive to the Geghard monastery, one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Armenia. The monastery complex is surrounded by towering cliffs and contains several churches and tombs, the majority of which are carved deep into the rock. It was the first monastery built in Armenia following the adoption of Christianity as the state religion in the early fourth century AD. Continue the tour to Garni Temple, Armenia's only remaining pagan temple from the first century AD. It was dedicated to Mitra, the Armenian Sun God. It is now symbolized as pre-Christian Armenia. Drive to the next UNESCO World Heritage Site in Armenia, the Cathedral and Churches of Echmiatsin (Echmiadzin) and the Zvartnots Archaeological Site. Echmiadzin is recognised as the spiritual heart of the Armenian people. Constructed in the VI century, it became one of the first official Christian Churches in the world. On the way back to Yerevan, visit the ruins of the VII-century Zvartnots temple, which was destroyed by an earthquake in the X century. Drop off at the hotel.
In the morning, drive to Khor Virap monastery, which is famous for its breathtaking views of Armenia's symbol, the majestic Mount Ararat. The name "Khor Virap" means "deep dungeon," and legend has it that St. Gregory the Illuminator, the patron saint of Armenia, was imprisoned here for 13 years. Continue to Noravank Monastery, a 13th-century monastery perched on a hill with scenic views. The brick-red cliffs that surround the area are the best part of the sight. Drive through a narrow canyon to reach the Areni cave, one of Armenia's most important archaeological sites, where the oldest shoe, winery, and straw skirt have been discovered. Visit the Areni winery near the cave, where you will be able to sample a local Areni wine. Drive back to Yerevan. Drop off at your hotel.
Transfer to the airport. Departure.