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Caucasus: Georgia, Armenia & Azerbaijan

14 days
from
£8,290
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Culture
Suitable for:
Age 17+
Activity level:
Leisurely / Moderate
Activity Rating - Leisurely/Moderate
Trip code: 
ZAR
Ways to Travel:
Platinum, Guided Group
Activity:
Multi-Country Culture Holidays
Group size:
7–14
Min age:
17

A breathtakingly scenic mountainous region separating the Black and Caspian Seas

The Caucasas or Caucasia is a breathtakingly scenic mountainous region that separates the Black Sea to the west and the Caspian Sea to the east. This region is mainly divided between four countries: Russia, Georgia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan.

Visit three out of the four main countries that occupy this region, six amazing UNESCO World Heritage sites, including the Haghpat Monastery and Echmaidzin, as well as Georgia's famous cave city on a comprehensive tour through these lesser-travelled lands.

 

Highlights

  • Discover the cultural treasures of these lesser-travelled countries.
  • Visit six amazing UNESCO World Heritage Sites—Haghpat Monastery, Echmaidzin Cathedral, Geghard, Monastery, Baku, Gobustan, and Mtskheta—on this comprehensive tour.
  • Explore Georgia’s famous cave city, Uplistsikhe, continuously inhabited from the 6th century BC until the 13th century, and wander through a labyrinth of cavernous halls and narrow passages.
  • Savour a variety of Georgian vintages during   several wine tastings.
  • Enjoy stays at some of the region’s finest hotels.

What's included

  • Daily activity options including nature walks and cultural tours
  • All gratuities
  • All accommodations
  • World-class expedition leader
  • All meals, including selected beverages with lunch and dinner
  • All entrance fees and taxes
  • Arrival and departure transfers on group dates
  • Gift certificates for recommended expedition gear
  • Medical expense coverage and emergency evacuation insurance

What's not included

  • Airfare from your home city/Yerevan and Baku/home city
  • Excess baggage charges
  • Airport arrival and departure taxes
  • Transfers for independent arrivals and departures
  • Passport and/or visa fees
  • Travel insurance
  • Items of a personal nature such as laundry, alcoholic beverages (other than listed), entrance fees for any extra sightseeing or optional activities, and other incidentals
  • Email/Internet/fax/telephone charges
Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailor made trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Itinerary

Yerevan, Armenia
to
Baku, Azerbaijan
  • Day 1

    Arrive in Armenia

    Upon arrival, transfer to the Grand Hotel Yerevanfor overnight.

    Accommodation: Grand Hotel Yerevan

    Meals included: Dinner
  • Days 2-3

    Yerevan

    The capital of Armenia, Yerevan has been continuously occupied since 6,000 BC. After an orientation tour of the city center, continue to the 1st-century Temple of Garni, the only pagan temple to survive in Armenia. The remains include an ancient fortress, palace, and baths. After lunch at a local home, visit the medieval Geghard Monastery; set at the head of the Azat Valley, many of its numerous churches and tombs are cut into the surrounding cliffs. This evening, gather at the hotel for a welcome cocktails reception and dinner. 

    The next day, visit the 4th-century Echmiadzin Cathedral, Armenia’s first and oldest cathedral. Continue to the ruins of Zvartnots Temple, a splendid example of 7th-century architecture. Enjoy fantastic views of Mt. Ararat and the surrounding pastures and vineyards from Khor Virap Monastery. Return to Yerevan for a tasting at the Ararat Brandy Factory.

    Accommodation: Grand Hotel Yerevan

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 4

    Yerevan / Lake Sevan / Tbilisi, Georgia

    En route to Georgia, make a stop at stunning Lake Sevan, one of three “seas of Armenia.” Continue to the Monastery of Haghpat, built between the 10th and 14th centuries. The monastery’s beautiful location, set on a verdant promontory above the Debed River, creates an atmospheric backdrop for its important St. Astvatsatsin Church. Arrive in Tbilisi, and check in to your Club Deluxe room at The Biltmore Hotel Tbilisi. This evening, enjoy a Georgian folk show and dinner at a local restaurant.

    Accommodation: The Biltmore Hotel Tbilisi

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 5

    Tbilisi

    Today, tour Georgia’s capital city, once an important stop on the Silk Road. Despite a number of wars and fires, the old part of the city still retains much of its original layout. Its spider’s web of winding streets and narrow back lanes leads you to the Abanotubani, or “bath district,” the 13th-century Metekhi Temple, the 5th-century Sioni Cathedral, and the 6th-century Anchiskhati Basilica. Walk along central Rustaveli Avenue to Freedom Square, then browse the treasures housed in the National Museum of Georgia. 

    Accommodation: Biltmore Hotel Tbilisi

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 6

    Tbilisi / Mtskheta / Kazbegi

    This morning, visit Mtskheta, the capital of Georgia from 500 BC - 500 AD. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is a treasure-trove of ancient monuments. Nearby, Gori was founded in the 7th century AD, and is the birthplace of Joseph Stalin. Visit the small house where he lived as well as the huge, palace-like Stalin Museum. Continue on to the famous cave city of Uplistsikhe; carved into a rocky plateau, it dates from the 6th century BC. Explore the huge echoing halls, meandering corridor-streets, theater, and 9th-century church. Then take a drive into the Caucasus Mountains along the historic Georgian Military Highway, enjoying dramatic views of the Aragvi River and Jvari Pass. Arrive in Kazbegi and check in to your Front View room at the Hotel Kazbegi for dinner and overnight.

    Accommodation: Hotel Kazbegi

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 7

    Kazbegi

    After breakfast, take a hike up to Gergeti Trinity Church, located on an isolated hilltop with gorgeous views of the valley and Mount Kazbek. After lunch with a local family, take 4x4 vehicles through the beautiful Sno Valley to the tiny village of Juta. A short hike reveals stunning vistas of the Chaukhi Mountains. Return to Kazbegi with the afternoon at leisure.

    Accommodation: Hotel Kazbegi

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 8

    Kazbegi / Tbilisi

    Today, return to Tbilisi, with a stop en route at the spectacular Ananuri Fortress. Continue to the historic estate of a Georgian prince, Chateau Mukhrani. Take a tour of the castle and wine cellar before joining our chef for a demonstration of how to prepare several Georgian delicacies. Enjoy your lunch accompanied by Georgian wines that are produced on site. Upon arrival in Tblisi, ride the funicular to the stunning Mtatsminda Plateau overlooking the city. Enjoy dinner at the Restaurant Funicular before checking in to The Bitlmore Hotel Tbilisi for overnight.

    Accommodation: Biltmore Hotel Tbilisi

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 9

    Tbilisi / Tsinandali

    After breakfast, set out to discover some of the splendid churches set in the lush vineyards just outside of Tbilisi. First, visit the St. Nina Monastery, then continue to Sighnaghi, a beautiful hill-town with panoramic views of the Alazani Valley and Eastern Caucasus Mountains. Enjoy a delicious lunch in town, before heading to a wine cellar to sample local vintages. Then take a tour of Alaverdi Cathedral and embark on a short walking tour of the tiny town of Telavi. Check in to your view room at the Radisson Collection Hotel Tsinandali Estate Georgiafor dinner and overnight.

    Accommodation: Radisson Collection Hotel Tsinandali Estate Georgia

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 10

    Tsinandali / Sheki, Azerbaijan

    This morning, depart overland for the Azerbaijan border. Make a stop en route at the Gremi architectural complex, a church and castle dating from the 16th century. Cross the border and enjoy your first meal in Azerbaijan. Arrive in Sheki, an important stop on the Silk Road and a center for silk production. Visit the 18th-century summer palace of the Sheki Khans, the Museum of History, and a local handicrafts workshop, ending at a panoramic viewpoint overlooking the town. Check in to the Marxal Hotel & Resort for dinner and overnight.

    Accommodation: Marxal Hotel & Resort

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 11

    Sheki / Baku

    Today’s drive takes you over the Muganly Pass where you will make several photo stops for stunning mountain vistas. Visit the Diri Baba mausoleum, historic Juma mosque, and Yeddi Gumbez, or Mausoleum of Seven Domes. Arrive in Azerbaijan’s capital, Baku, this evening and check in to your Deluxe Caspian room at the Four Seasons Hotelfor dinner and overnight.

    Accommodation: Four Seasons Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Days 12-13

    Baku

    Baku lies on the western shore of the Caspian Sea. Visit the fortress of Icheri-Shekher and the 90-foot tower of Kyz-Kalasy, dating from the 12th century. Stroll the old town’s maze of narrow alleys to view the 11th-century Palace of the Shirvan-Shahs, now a museum. Other notable historic architecture includes the Law Court (Divan-Khan), the Dzhuma-Mechet Minaret, and the mausoleum of the astronomer Seida Bakuvi. Close to Baku is the Gobustan Rock Art Cultural Landscape, where 4,000 rock drawings of people and animals were found. In the afternoon, take a cruise on the Caspian Sea, with free time to explore Baku on your own.

    The next day, visit the Apsheron Peninsula, including the Temple of the Fire Worshippers—Ateshgah. Continue to the Yanardag Mud Volcaonos and Gala Village. Return to Baku with time at leisure before a farewell cocktail party and dinner.

    Accommodation: Four Seasons Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 14

    Baku / Home

    Transfer to the airport this morning for your independent flight, arriving home the same day.

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

Georgia

Visas are not required for Georgia for UK passport holders, EU, Canadian and US nationals. Check with your travel agent or with the embassy for other nationalities.

Armenia

UK and EU passport holders do not need a visa for Armenia. Certain other nationaltiies can obtain a visa on arrival.

Azerbaijan

All British citizens require a visa for Azerbaijan. The easiest way to do this is via an e-visa, which is significantly cheaper than through the embassy or visa agency. Information relating to the visa application process can be found here. Please contact our Operations Team to obtain one of these visas; details of who to contact will be on your sales confirmation.

To apply for the Azerbaijan e-visa through Exodus, we will require the following:

1. Scan of your passport photo page (this should be a scan, in colour, rather than a photo, and all details should be legible)
2. Your occupation
3. Home and/or work phone number
4. Mobile phone number
5. Full postal address

Approximately 2 months prior to departure, we will be in touch to collect any missing information. A payment of £40 per person is also required.

Vaccinations

Georgia

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Ensure all primary courses and boosters are up to date for life in your home country. Recommended vaccinations are: Hepatitis A, Diphtheria, Hepatitis B, Rabies and Tetanus.

Armenia

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Tetanus, Diphtheria, Typhoid, Hepatitis A. Vaccination against Meningitis is also recommended.

Azerbaijan

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements for this trip.

Recommended vaccinations for this trip are: Tetanus, Diphtheria, Typhoid, Hepatitis A.

Vaccination against Meningitis is also recommended.

Is this trip for you?

This tour is operated in partnership with our sister company Zegrahm Expeditions. As such the departures are not exclusive to Exodus and groups may be a mixture of Exodus, Zegrahm Expeditions, and other clients. This trip is booked through Exodus and you will receive the same award winning customer service that you would expect. Zegrahm Expeditions operate with the same core principles used by Exodus and champion the benefits of small group travel.

For most activities, a relatively moderate level of exertion is required. You must be able to walk distances of one to three miles, sometimes over uneven surfaces, such as cobblestones and climb stone steps that may not have handrails. Opportunities will also be available for optional hikes requiring more exertion. Average daily temperatures will range from the low-50sºF to the high-60sºF. Travel to this part of the world requires sensitivity to local cultures and customs; at times, you may need to remove your shoes and women may be expected to cover their heads.

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as generally not suitable for persons of reduced mobility. However if you are a regular traveller on such trips, please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailor made trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Premium Lodges & Hotels

It is Zegrahm's policy to always use premium quality accommodations, when available, in the regions we visit. Since each destination is different, lodging can range from elegant hotels in cities to rustic inns in more remote areas. You will receive specific accommodation details closer to the time of departure.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailor made trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

Have you been on this adventure? Tell others what it’s like by writing a review.

Dates & Prices

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros  Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros  Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros  Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]