- Days: 10 days
- Period: Beginning of may
- Weather: Weather in spring is very unpredictable. In Yerevan it was hot, but in the mountains there were many days with rain. Mostly it rained only in the afternoon or in the morning. Despite the rain it was not very cold. At higher altitudes the nights were still cold.
Currency: Armenian Dram (AMD)
Internet: available in many places. A lot of hotels and restaurants have Wi-Fi
ATM's: everywhere and most of them accept visa and mastercard
Creditcards: Some hotels and restaurants accept creditcards. Most fuel stations do not. You have to pay cash there.
Safety: Armenia is very safe. Parking your car of wildcamping is no problem.
Prices (may 2014)
Value Money: €1 = 572 AMD
Fuel: diesel is 425 AMD (about € 0,75 ) per liter
Camping: there are almost no official campsites in Armenia but camping is easy. Just find a good spot and spent the night. If you are not sure just ask for permission and you will be fine. We camped all over the country and no issues at all. Only friedly people.
Prices: Armenia is cheap. Dinner for 2 between 5000 - 10000 AMD
Bread: 1 bread costs 100 AMD
For EU citizens no visa needed. You just get a stamp on the border (no costs)
Entry: Coming from Georgia. Entry took about one hour. Police controls are easy. Just drive up and get your passport stamped. Customs however is a bit more hassle. Before you can leave the border you have to organise the entry costs for your car. There is a special customs office where you can do this. Costs depend on how many days you want to stay. For 2 weeks we had to pay AMD 20,600 which was for customs fee, ecotax and roadtax. On top we had to pay AMD 2000 for administration costs. All paperwork can be done in the same building. Just walk form one desk to another. Organising local money is easy as there are ATM's on the border. After you have organised the paperwork for your car you must get an insurance (right after the border). There are many offices here. Price for insurance depends on your engine and the periode you want to stay. For us (2 weeks with a Toyota Landcruiser HZJ 75) the price was AMD 6500.
Exit: We left Armenia at Meghri going to Iran. Leaving the country was quite a hassle and we even had to pay extra costs. This is normal; in Armenia you have to pay on entry and exit. When you reach the border you must park your car next to the big building (passenger terminal) and bring all your papers (passports, car documents and all the papers you received on arrival). Then go to the window of the Ararat bank where you must hand over the document you received on arrival and make a payment. The bank employee will tell you how much. For us (two persons and a car for 10 days in Armenia) we had to pay AMD 8600. If you do not have Drams anymore you can also pay in USD. Then only the driver has to copy (Xerox they call it) his papers (car document and passport) and go to the passport control. Then driver can return to the car and pass the gate. (the gate was closed during lunch break). The passenger has to follow another route and must go through the passport control for passengers. Passenger will exit the building on the other side of the gate and wait for the driver there. From there you can continue by car where 2 other passport controls and a car check will follow. Leaving the country at this border was confusing and more trouble than getting in. There is a tax-free shop in between where you can spend you last Drams if needed.
In Armenia there are hardly any 4-lane highways. Most roads are 2-lane and although the are mostly all tarmac quite a lot of them are in very bad condition. The tarmac had a lot of potholes, rapair patches or many bumps. The worst were in the southern part of the country on our way to the Iranian border.
Fees for Toll roads, briges, tunnels and ferries
no toll roads
Highlights or not (prices from May 2014)
note: many sights are monastries and churches and as to us "if you seen a couple you've seen them all" we only visited a few very special ones. They were nice places but we do not know how they compare to the many others we have not seen.
Haghpat: Unesco monastry and church in the Debed Canyon. Costs = free. Nice monastry.
- Sanahin: Unesco monastry and church in the Debed Canyon not far from Haghpat. Costs = free. Nice place, but we liked Haghpat more.
- Mykoyan museum = small museum in Sanahin about the Mykoyan brothers who had remarkable careers. One brother was a minister and the other one was the designer of the Mig fighterplane. Outside the museum there is one first model Mig. We liked this place. Something different from churches.
- Gyumri = small city that still shows the signs of the big earthquake that ruined it in 1988. The small streets on one side from the main car free shopping avenue are very authentic.
- Yerevan = Very cosmopolitan modern city with many restaurants and luxury shopping malls. We have not seen any museums or churches in the city. Instead we visited some other places but they were not that very special. For us just tasting city life, eating out and have a drink on a terrace was the best thing about the city.
- Yerevan, Cascades = Free of charge. Nicely built and inside there are many fine pieces of art on display. Around here an the Opera building there are many good restaurants.
- Yerevan, Old Erevan = good local restaurant with great traditional atmosphere and not very expensive. Close to the Opera building.
- Yerevan, Mother Armenia = Free of charge. The hugh monument replaced the former Stalin statue. The monument is not very special but from the platform you have a nice view over the city.
- Yerevan, Genocide museum = due to renovation the museum was closed but it would probably be worth a visit. The memorial which you can visit free of charge was impressive.
- Yerevan, old bazaar (opposite of the blue mosque). The old bazaar is now a shopping mall. The building is nice but the shops not worth a visit.
- Yerevan, Ararat Cognac factory = we went here but left because of the high entry fee (4000 AMD per person of 10.000 AMD per person depening on how much Cognac you whish to buy). As we did not wanted to buy anothing we thought the price was too high so we left without visiting the factory.
- Garni Temple = Costs 1000 AMD per person. Old pagan temple used for sun worship. A short visit will do but we liked it.
- Sevan Lake = Has many places to bushcamp. In May it was too cold for swimming but a great stop over. Beautiful scenery.
- Old cementry = Has a lot of old traditional carved grave stones with the (khatchkars) with the original stone cross designs. A bit further on a dirt track just after the cementry is a small chapel with also old graves. This place is very small but we liked it more. Cost = free
- Jermuk, hot springs = Must be nice but the track up hill was so muddy and steep with many big rocks that we did not dare to drive it. A driver had already warned us that the track would be very bad. Around the lake however you can find good bushcamp spots. As an alternative you can also have a bath in the mineral rich water in the big hotel in the center. But for permission a doctor has to see you first. We skipped it for that reason.
- Sisian, Zoster Karer = An old astronomy observatory. Like stonehenge but less spectacular. Nice but a short shop will do. Do not expect anything special.
- Tatev monastry = For us this was the nicest monastry of the country. Instead of driving we took the new cable car which is the longest reversible in the world (5,7 km). Costs for the cable car (4000 AMD per person return trip). Entry to the monastry is free. When you however go by car you can visit devil's bridge on the way. Which must be nice.
- Goris = According to
the Lonely planet a nice city but we did not like it. Empty streets and
not much to do.
GPS-waypoints - from 2014
Grid: Lat/Lon hddd°mm.mmm"
When the term bushcamp was used it was free of charge
|AM-CAMP01 - N41°03.126 E44°35.553
Bushcamp in a field next to a spring nearby Odzun
AM-CAMP02 - N40°49.814 E43°55.449
Bushcamp in a field nearby Gyumri
AM-CAMP03 - N40°11.096 E44°30.062
Bushcamp on the parking of Hotel Hrazdan in Yerevan. Hotel has free wi-fi
AM-CAMP04 - N40°30.006 E45°03.132
Bushcamp on the shores of Lake Sevan with our own private beach
AM-CAMP05 - N39°48.654 E45°39.543
Bushcamp at lake near Jermuk
AM-CAMP06 - N39°32.718 E45°59.803
Bushcamp on a field next to a river near Sisian. The waterfall is just down the road
AM-CAMP07 - N39°25.567 E46°22.240
Bushcamp between Gorin and Kapan
AM-GARNI - N40°06.867 E44°43.766
Garni old pagan temple
AM-SHOP01 - N40°10.819 E44°29.263
Big Mall in Yerevan, huge supermarket and free wi-fi
AM-TATEV - N39°25.057 E46°17.943
Wings of Tatev cablecar station
AM-ZORATS - N39°33.035 E46°01.739
Zorats Karer, stonehenge of Armenia