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Did you know? You can travel Armenia for 5 days wi...

Did you know? You can travel Armenia for 5 days with a $30 USD daily budget

I usually wouldn’t do tours but there is something very interesting when Armenia is a topic. People would usually look at each other and ask, “what the hell do we know about Armenia?”  

Exactly. I didn’t know anything. I would’ve loved to dive into the cultural aspect of Armenia (which I am still in the process of exploring) but believe me, even if if I wanted to, I am caught this country at a very strange time. It’s winter. There wasn’t so much to do and when I arrived the city, they were on a week-long holiday! Every store was closed and a few restaurants were operating. It was really disappointing because I wasn’t aware of their “holiday calendar.”

I still want to give you the best content about Armenia so let’s start with the mandatory touristic circuit, shall we?

I think this is the best way to get acquainted with a country that you never had an image of. It will give you a better idea of what’s in store for you when you visit. Seriously, what is Armenia all about? Below is a breakdown on how your Armenia travel budget should be.

Note: The currency in Armenia is called dram (AMD). If you are not as good in Math like me, you will get confused. Their money can count thousands but is just equivalent to a small amount in US dollars. Another important thing: there is a big argument about Armenia as part of Asia and Europe. Since I can’t seem to find it through research, I categorised it to Europe in this blog just because I find it more similar to Europe in terms of cultural construct.

DAY 1: Yerevan, the capital city

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I never expected that Yerevan can be the best image of a soviet era. The architecture of the houses, churches, museums and even the 5-star hotels resonates ancient and modern feels at the same time. I would usually advise you to do the tour by yourself but since I am here during the winter, it was not easy to explore and get lost. Signing up with a tour agency in Armenia was necessary.

Temperatures during the winter season in Yerevan can go up to -16 degrees so it’s not really a smart move to be out there in the cold, clueless on where to go. However, if you are okay with winter wandering, walk around the city and explore it yourself! Most of the people in the capital can speak English so when in doubt, ask.

Tour duration: 3-4 hours | Tour cost: 7,000 AMD ($14 USD approx)

  • Hostel bed (decent hostel, good ratings): $5 USD
  • Food (mid-range restaurant, inexpensive meal, lunch and dinner): $11 USD
  • Tour: $14 USD

Day 1 total cost:  $30 USD

Day 2: Kecharis, Tsaghkadzor and Lake Sevan

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On this day, you will get to visit three interesting sights of Armenia:

(1) The Kecharis Monastery is one of the most interesting structures of Armenia. You will definitely enjoy this sight if you are an architecture and history geek!

(2) Close to Yerevan is a spa town called Tsaghkadzor (valley of flowers in English) which is very popular for health activities. Skiing is an option, too. There is also a cable car which will give you a good view of the small town. Make sure you can take the cold during winter because it can really be a cold ride!

(3) You know the things you always see in Armenian postcards? That’s Lake Sevan. It is the largest body of water not just in Armenia but the whole of Caucasus! Myths and urban legends have been told about the sparkling waters of the lake. The view is spectacular but I think I’d prefer to visit during the summer.

Extra activities like spa and cable car rides are not included in the tour cost.

Tour duration: 6-7 hours | Tour cost: 7,000 AMD ($14 USD approx)

  • Hostel bed (decent hostel, good ratings): $5 USD
  • Food (mid-range restaurant, inexpensive meal, lunch and dinner): $11 USD
  • Tour: $14 USD

Day 2 total cost:  $30 USD

Day 3: Khor Virap and Areni Winery

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I actually listened to the tour in Kho Virap because of the many stories about the transition of paganism to Christianity. I am usually a person who would ignore all these but the stories have been really interesting. If you are not familiar with St. Gregory the Illuminator, this is where he survived imprisonment for 13 years. I am not going to tell you the whole story because it will take a full post but listen to the tour guide! You won’t regret it!

Apparently, this country is also big on wines. Areni Winery gave us a long wine list to taste so if you ever decide to take this tour, make sure not to get drunk! This is also the best place to buy wine to take home.

Tour duration: 6-7 hours | Tour cost: 8,000 AMD ($16 USD approx)

  • Hostel bed (decent hostel, good ratings): $5 USD
  • Food (mid-range restaurant, inexpensive meal, lunch and dinner): $9 USD
  • Tour: $16 USD

Day 3 total cost:  $30 USD

Day 4: A ‘churchy’ kind of day

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It was so refreshing to have done this tour on January 6, Armenia’s Christmas day. This country is Christian Orthodox, hence the difference on the date of Christmas. We even saw the President in the church! Although I wouldn’t count myself as a very religious person, it was so refreshing to see how Christianity is practiced in Armenia. Another interesting that I learned is that Armenia is the first country in the world that adapted Christianity, even before Rome did. (Thanks to St Geregory).

Get to visit different cathedrals like Echmiadzin, Hripsime, Gayane and Mother Cathedral. Some of them are very hard to read (just looking at the spelling makes me question my reading skills) but each have unique features that are worth knowing about. The Zvarnots Temple is also included in this itinerary as the last stop.

Tour duration: 4-5 hours | Tour cost: 7,000 AMD ($14USD approx)

  • Hostel bed (decent hostel, good ratings): $5 USD
  • Food (mid-range restaurant, inexpensive meal, lunch and dinner): $11 USD
  • Tour: $14 USD

Day 4 total cost:  $30 USD

Day 5: Garni, Geghard and lavash baking

Moving further to Christianity 101 in Armenia, the Garni Temple is probably one of the most interesting and symbolical sights in the country. Did you know that this is the only pagan temple that has survived destruction through the years? Yes, it is still good as new!

Listed as a UNESCO Heritage Site, another interesting monastery is the Geghard Monastery. It is carved around mountains and surrounded by cliffs. It truly is a spectacular sight! Try Googling aerial shots now and see how beautiful it looks from above!

Pack up your day with lavash baking, Armenia’s national thin bread. Traditionally it is being baked by two or more women in a round oven inserted in the ground. The process is very interesting and something to add to your new skills list. After the baking session, get the chance to taste your masterpiece with cheese! You shouldn’t miss this because lavash is in the list of Intangible Cultural heritage of UNESCO.

Tour duration: 7-8 hours | Tour cost: 8,000 AMD ($16 USD approx)

  • Hostel bed (decent hostel, good ratings): $5 USD
  • Food (mid-range restaurant, inexpensive meal, lunch and dinner): $9 USD
  • Tour: $16 USD

Day 5 total cost:  $30 USD

Your Armenia travel budget need not to be extravagant! $30 USD per day is doable and we can conclude that this is not a very expensive country. I was shocked with the huge bills (counting in thousands) but after a few days, I got the hang of it.

Above all, Armenia is an interesting country that is definitely worth visiting and should be in your 2017 travel plans.


Have you visited Armenia? How much was your daily budget? I would love to hear from you! Leave your thoughts, ideas and tips on the comment box below!

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Trisha is one of those people who left their comfortable life to travel the world and learn about life. Her style is to stay in one place she likes for 3 months (or more) to know what it feels like to eat, cook, speak and sleep in another culture that isn’t hers. She'd like to believe she's not traditionally traveling but she just chooses to be somewhere else all the time. Trisha also loves extremely spicy food, pineapples, plants and symmetry. In no particular order, her favourite cities in the world are Barcelona, Buenos Aires, Hong Kong and Tel Aviv. Follow her life adventures on Instagram: @psimonmyway

  1. Teesh

    12 January

    Your Day 2 photo is just plain breathtaking!

  2. MsLure

    28 January

    I’ll be in Armenia this coming 16-19 of Feb… So excited! Your blog is a help. ThAnks.

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