17 days

Azerbaijan, Georgia & Armenia

Azerbaijan, Georgia & Armenia

Kutaisi Monastery

Svetitskhoveli Cathedral in Mtskheta

Amberd Fortress

Qobustan

Khor Virap Monastery with Mount Ararat

Tsibili Baths

Etchmiadzin Cathedral

Talin Monastery

Caucasus Mountains

Baku

Ateshgah Fire Temple

Vardzia Cave Town

Geghard Monastery

Gergeti Trinity Church

Trip rating
  • "The mountains sing. Their hoary peaks, in their snow-white fur hats, carry on a conversation among themselves. They are laconic witnesses of time long past. Even the stones here speak.The Caucasus - this lovely territory, with its ancient culture, rich history, that has, from time immemorial, drawn the attention of thinkers, historians, students of local lore, travellers to it, like a magnet." Oleg Shamba.

    Itinerary

    Day 1 - Baku

    • On arrival at Baku Airport you will be met by one of our representatives once you’ve passed through immigration, then transferred to your hotel.
    • In the evening you will meet your tour leader and the other group members for a pre-tour briefing.
    • This will be followed by an optional group dinner at a local restaurant.
    Central Park Hotel or similar

    Day 2 - Absheron Peninsula – Baku

    • In the morning you will start a Baku city tour with a panoramic view of Baku.
    • You will visit the Old City including Shemakha Gate, Palace of the Shirvanshahs, Maiden Tower, caravanserai, the old market square, and the Carpet Museum.
    • You will than do a tour of the Absheron Peninsula, where you will visit Ateshgah Fire Temple, Mardakan medieval fortress and Yanar Dag Fire Mountain, before returning to Baku.
    Central Park Hotel or similar
    Breakfast

    Day 3 - Qobustan – Baku

    • Today you will drive to Qobustan, stopping en route to view the amazing collection of old oil rigs.
    • Upon arrival in Qobustan, you will visit the open-air museum, featuring UNESCO World Heritage listed rock engravings. You will also have the opportunity to see the on-site archaeological museum before returning to Baku.
    Central Park Hotel or similar
    Breakfast

    Day 4 - Sheki

    • You will leave Baku today, and depart for the Caucasus Mountains in the northwest of Azerbaijan. You will notice that the arid landscape gives way to a densely forested mountain area as you travel.
    • En route you will visit an active mud volcano site by the main highway, the Diri Baba shrine in Maraza, the Yeddi Gumbez Tomb and Juma Mosque in Shemakha.
    • In Sheki you will stop at a local craft workshop where the famous ‘shebeke’ (stained-glass windows with intricately carved frames) are hand-made.
    • You will also visit the well-known Sheki Khan’s Palace, with its magnificent frescoes and stained glass. This will be a full and interesting day.
    Olympic Hotel or similar
    Breakfast

    Day 5 - Azerbaijan-Georgia Border (Lagodekhi) – Tbilisi

    • In the morning you will have the opportunity to visit a traditional bazaar.
    • From here you will drive to the border with Georgia, where you will farewell your Azeri tour leader and meet your Georgian tour leader. You will also change vehicles to start your exploration of Georgia.
    • You will have the rare and intimate opportunity to stop at a local’s house for a lunch of traditional homemade food and wine before travelling on to another local village.
    • At this local village you will visit a farmer’s house and see a unique old wine cellar. You will become acquainted with the Georgian way of winemaking, quite different from the European way, and drink typical Georgian wine straight from the clay jars.
    • You will then continue on your journey to reach the capital, Tbilisi.
    Rustavelli Palace Hotel or similar
    Breakfast | Lunch

    Day 6 - Tbilisi

    • You will take in a sightseeing tour of Tbilisi this morning, including a wander through the fascinating Old Town. You will take a journey back through the history of the city from the earliest centuries to present-day, by walking the narrow streets and taking in the religious and secular architecture.
    • Here you will find a myriad of different religious buildings – churches, synagogues, mosques, as well as famous 19th century houses with wooden multi-coloured balconies.
    • You will also visit the famous sulfur baths, which made an unforgettable impression on famous writers such as Alexander Pushkin, Mikhail Lermontov and Alexandre Dumas.
    • Enjoy a superb panoramic view of the Old Town before viewing the stunning treasures of the Georgian National Museum (closed on Mondays) and take a stroll along Rustaveli Avenue – the main street in Tbilisi.
    Rustavelli Palace Hotel or similar
    Breakfast

    Day 7 - Mtskheta – Gudauri

    • You will visit the ancient capital and religious centre of Georgia today – the 3000-year-old city of Mtskheta. Here you will see historical places such as 6th century Jvari Church and the 11th century Svetitskhoveli Cathedral, where the robe of Christ is reportedly buried. Both Jvari and Svetitskhoveli are UNESCO World Heritage sites.
    • You will continue up the famous Georgian Military Highway from Mtskheta (leading to the Georgian-Russian border). On the way you will visit the 17th century Ananuri architectural complex, two historic churches and the fortress that overlooks the Zhinvali water reservoir.
    • The scenic drive will take you into the heart of the high Caucasus Mountains.
    Carpe Diem Hotel or similar
    Breakfast | Dinner

    Day 8 - Kazbegi – Gudauri

    • This morning you will embark on a stunning drive from Gudauri along the Tergi River, to Kazbegi – the main town in the region.
    • At Kazbegi you will enjoy a leisurely two-hour walk up through beautiful valleys and woodlands to the Gergeti Trinity Church, located 2170 metres above sea level. Please note that a 4WD vehicle can be hired (optional and at extra cost) to transport those who opt not to, or who are unable to join in this walk.
    • Weather permitting, you may catch a glimpse of one of the highest glaciers in the Caucasus – Mt Kazbegi (5047m) from here.
    • You will walk back to the town before driving back to Gudauri.
    Carpe Diem Hotel or similar
    Breakfast | Dinner

    Day 9 - Gori – Kutaisi

    • Your journey will continue today to the town of Gori, located in the heart of Kartli region. You will have the opportunity to stop at the Stalin Museum (Gori being the birthplace of Joseph Stalin).
    • Next you will explore Uplistsikhe cave city (1000 BC), a place where the Great Silk Road used to pass. There are now remnants of an old and interesting complex with dwelling quarters, wine-cellars, bakeries, a three-nave basilica church hewn out of rock, and even an ancient theatre.
    • You will then drive on to Imereti province (West Georgia), which is very different from Kartli province (East Georgia), with its cool springs, green fields and beautiful gardens.
    • You will visit the pretty and historic town of Kutaisi, the second largest town in the country that dates back 3000 years.
    Rcheuli Palace Hotel or similar
    Breakfast

    Day 10 - Kutaisi – Akhaltsikhe

    • You will visit historical sites of Kutaisi this morning, such as the 12th century Gelati Cathedral – one of the earliest academies in Europe, and the splendid 11th century Bagrati Cathedral. Both cathedrals are UNESCO World heritage listed sites.
    • From here you will drive to Akhaltsikhe to visit the multicultural complex of Rabat Castle.
    Lomsia Hotel or similar
    Breakfast

    Day 11 - Vardzia Cave Town – Georgia-Armenia Border (Bavra) – Gyumri

    • You will travel to Vardzia today, stopping en route at the 11th century Khertvisi Fortress.
    • Stretching over half a kilometre along the Mtkvari River and consisting of 19 tiers, the magnificent 12th century cave town of Vardzia will be one of the highlights of your trip.
    • There were once about 3000 caves, as well as a church hewn out in rock with amazing 12th century frescos here. The complex also includes dwelling quarters, small hall-type churches, refectories, wine cellars, a pharmacy and more!
    • You will drive to the Georgia-Armenia border at Bavra from Vardzia, where you will farewell your Georgian tour leader and meet your Armenian leader.
    • From here you will continue on to Gyumri to start your exploration of Armenia.
    Breakfast

    Day 12 - Gyumri – Mastara – Talin – Yerevan

    • Start a city tour around Gyumri with a visit to the church of Mastara, which dates from the 5th century and features a variation of the cruciform plan and central cupola church.
    • In the accordance with its square plan, the four projecting apses, inward-facing circular, and outward facing polygonal, offer the requisite supports to hold up the imposing polygonal cupola.
    • You will continue on to another excellent early church called Talin, which contains the impressive remains of an important 7th century cathedral church.
    • From here you will drive on to the capital of Armenia – Yerevan.
    Hrazdan Hotel or similar
    Breakfast

    Day 13 - Matenadaran – Yerevan

    • Today you will embark upon a short city tour around Yerevan by visiting Mother Armenia Monument.
    • You will continue for 20 kilometres to Echmiadzin, and visit the St Hripsime Church en route, which is considered to be one of the ‘seven wonders’ of Armenia.
    • Today we remain in Yerevan and do some sightseeing of this fascinating city. Museums and Monuments could keep you busy for days however the best part about this city is its people! Enjoy the sights, scents and faces of the locals while we do a walking tour of the monument of the 50th anniversary of Soviet Armenia, Republic Square, see the Statue of Mother Armenia and perhaps visit the Military Museum, Matendaran and Tsitsernakaberd memorials.
    Hrazdan Hotel or similar
    Breakfast

    Day 14-15 - Goris

    • Today we will journey to the medieval town of Goris. (Approx a 4-5 hour drive from Yerevan) whilst breaking the trip with a stop in the town of Ararat.
    • Goris is located along a river in a valley surrounded by mountains, and is a popular place to visit in the south of Armenia. We will spend the next two nights here exploring Goris and the surrounding region of Tatev. Immerse yourself in the local culture, take the world's longest rope-way (the wings of Tatev) to the Tatev Monastery or go for a hike and soak in the amazing scenery of the stone pyramids.
    Mina Hotel or similar
    Breakfast

    Day 16 - Yerevan

    • Today we will start our journey back to Yerevan. On the way we will stop in on magnificent monument of medieval Armenian architecture – the UNESCO World Heritage listed Geghard Monastery. Geghard is another incredible ancient Armenian monastery that is partially carved out of a mountain. Your next stop is the citadel and pagan temple of Garni, a picturesque monument of the Hellenistic period and an impressive piece of ancient Armenian architecture. It was built in the 1st century A.D.
    Hrazdan Hotel or similar

    Day 17 - Yerevan

    • Your epic journey will come to an end this morning in Yerevan after breakfast.
    • Your leader will be on hand to help you with any departure information you require.
    Breakfast
  • What to Know

    What's Included

    • An experienced, English-speaking Peregrine leader and specialist local guides at some sites
    • Arrival transfer
    • Transport
    • Sightseeing and entrance fees including: City tours of Baku, Yerevan, Gyumri and Tbilisi; National & Stalin Museum in Georgia; Uplistsikhe and Varzdia cave complexes; ancient monasteries of Georgia & Armenia
    • Authentic Accommodation includes: 16 nights hotels
    • Meals: 16 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 3 dinners
    • Hiking in Kazbegi to the Gergeti Trinity Church

    Not Included

    • International flights
    • Airport departure taxes
    • Departure transfer
    • Visas
    • Meals unless specified in the itinerary
    • Insurance
    • Laundry - may be available at locations where we stay two or more nights
    • Optional tours or activities during free time
    • Tips - this is something to consider, and it might be worthwhile speaking to your group about making a group contribution at the end of the trip
    • Daily budget

    Safety Information

    The Caucasus are generally safe countries to travel in. Take sensible precautions: be vigilant, avoid carrying large sums of money and don’t walk alone at night. You should travel by licensed taxi where possible. Don’t carry your passport, credit card, travel tickets and money together. Leave spare cash, passports and valuables in a safe place. Take the same personal safety precautions on the street and when using ATMs as you would at home. Take particular care if using an ATM after dark, especially if you are alone.

  • Map Itinerary

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Trip at a glance

Trip Code PCAG
Group size 1 - 16
Start City: Baku, Azerbaijan
End City: Yerevan, Armenia

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