July 1, 2017
Ten Tips for Visiting Beautiful Yerevan in Armenia
Yerevan is the capital of Armenia, a lesser known Eastern European country that’s been gaining prominence in recent years. Armenia has thousands of years of history to it. It witnessed the birth of Christianity as the first Christian nation and recently gained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. The food is amazing and the culture is definitely unique in the world.
How to Get There
Ten years ago there weren’t many flights to Yerevan. As Armenia’s popularity as a tourist destination has grown over the years, so has the the number of airlines serving the country. I flew Ari France from Paris to Yerevan. Some other flight options include Qatar from Doha, Aeroflot from Moscow, Aegean from Athens, Ukraine from Kiev, LOT from Warsaw, Austrian from Vienna, and Brussels Air from Brussels. Yerevan is a becoming a major Star Alliance destination.
Where to Stay
Many chain hotels have been opening in Yerevan in recent years. But the original and best located chain hotel is the Marriott at the center of Republic Square. It’s right at the heart of the city and is within walking distance of major attractions, the subway, and taxis. If you want a trick to earn Marriott and Starwood elite after just 9 hotel nights, checkout my guide here.
As I mentioned, Republic Square is the center of Yerevan. You’ll find a large museum on one end while witnessing the bustle of the city.
Northern Ave is a long street just off of Republic Square. It’s the equivalent of the Champs-Elysees and other similar shopping streets around the world. You’ll find high-end stores and restaurants lined along this street.
While Northern Ave isn’t very populated during the day, it gets very busy at night. People are heading out for a night of fun, dining, and drinking.
The Opera house is located at the end of Northern Ave. It’s Yerevan’s main performance arts building. You can enjoy operas, concerts, plays etc there. There’s a statue of Armenian composer Aram Khatchaturian in the back.
Cascade is a long series of stairs with various statues dispersed along the way. If you don’t want to walk all the way up (it’s good exercise), there’s air conditioned escalators available on the left hand side.
You’ll find an amazing view of the city at the top. If you get there at night, everything is lit up 😉
Mother Armenia & Victory Park
Mother Armenia is a memorial symbolizing peace through strength. It’s a massive statue of an Armenian woman holding a sword with a shield at her feet. There’s another beautiful view of Yerevan right across from the monument.
There are several military artifacts surrounding Mother Armenia. Kids were taking turns climbing on this tank while their mother took photos.
Views of Mount Ararat from Mother Armenia
Victory park is a kids park right next to Mother Armenia. There’s not much to do there if you’re an adult, but kids can play on a ferris wheel, bumper cars, arcade etc. The park looked a bit like an outdated Soviet amusement park. Note that the food here is alright, but there’s much better Armenian food located in downtown Yerevan.
Lake Sevan is the largest lake in Armenia and is about a one-hour car ride from the city. The water was beautiful and the whole area was full of birds enjoying themselves. The lake is surrounded by rolling mountains.
When you’re done taking pictures, enjoy some Armenian cuisine by the lake. Freshwater trout is the specialty here. You can also rent jet skis and have some fun on the water!
This is the Armenian Genocide memorial dedicated to the 1.5 million Armenians who were killed by the Ottomans between 1915-1918. There’s an eternal flame that’s always lit in addition to a Genocide museum nearby.
Armenian food is amazing! Try as much food as you can while in Yerevan. Three great examples are Manti (pictured above), Adana Kebab, and Lahmajun (pictured below)!
Finally, the people of Armenia are very hospitable, willing to answer questions, and helpful to tourists. Most speak English so you won’t have any problem communicating with them.
Featured Image Courtesy of Getty Images