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Next destination – Lori: top must-sees and must-dos in the region

Lori region in the North of Armenia is known for its mountains and lush green forests, picturesque canyons and swift rivers, ancient architectural monuments as well as kind and hospitable people. In just about 3 hours’ drive from Yerevan, you can explore a range of activities and experiences that are guaranteed to make your vacation memorable!

Lori is beautiful in all seasons; however, Autumn is probably the best time to visit as the crisp air of the mountains will offer you a refreshing escape from the heat of the city. Here is what you can do in this scenic region.

Learn about Armenia’s history and architecture at Haghpat and Sanahin Monasteries

Haghpat and Sanahin Monastery complexes date back to the 10th century. Here you can see the splendor of Armenian medieval church architecture in all its beauty: both complexes are comprised of several churches and auxiliary buildings all decorated in the best traditions of rock carvings and khachkar art. The monasteries are located on top of hills that offer wonderful views over the mountains of Lori and are truly the best place to combine exploration of history with an enjoyable time in the beautiful nature. It’s no mere chance that the monasteries are both included into UNESCO’s World Heritage List. (By the way, we’ve written about these and other sights on the list in one of our previous articles).

Add some adrenaline to your vacation rafting down the rivers

Debed and Dzoraget Rivers in Lori have recently become favorite destinations for fans of active holidays. These fast rivers flow through beautiful canyons offering a great venue for rafting and canyoning. Several routes of different levels of difficulty are available with day trip and overnight camping options where you can hone your teamwork skills rafting through the dangerous waters while enjoying some wonderful views. Rafting can be an ideal holiday activity to explore if you enjoy being in the nature, working in a team and experiencing some risky adventures!

Let the gorgeous views mesmerize you while trekking in the mountains

Several trails (both marked and unmarked) are available in the mountains of Lori offering trekking experiences of different difficulty levels. One of the most enjoyable and relatively easy trails is trekking from the village of Odzun to Horamayr Monastery and then onwards to Kobayr Monastery. This day-trip trail will give you an opportunity to explore two unique monuments of Armenian architecture, Horomayr and Kobayr Monasteries, while trekking through a stunningly beautiful mountain route. 


Built in the 12th century, Horomayr Monastery is a complex of several chapels partially built in cliffs and caves and intricately decorated with khachkars. It’s about 2 hours trekking from the village of Odzun on a nicely marked mountain trail.

After exploring the Horomayr, you can continue the trail all the way to Kobayr Monastery, another jewel of the Armenian architecture hidden in the forests of Lori. Although partially ruined, the Monastery is unique due to the well-preserved frescoes decorating one of the walls. You can also enjoy beautiful views over the canyon from the monastery site.


Challenge yourself with some more difficult hiking routes

If you are more into nature exploration rather than cultural sights, then Lori can offer you several mountain hiking routes that are good for day trips or weekend getaways. The mountain ranges of Javakhq, Bazum, Pambak, Gugarats, Virahayots and Halab pass through Lori Region. Some of the most popular and relatively easy mountains to climb are Mt. Lalvar, the highest peak in Virahayots mountain range (2,552m asl); Mt. Dzithanits, sometimes referred to as Maymekh (2,534m asl), Mt. Achkasar (3,196m asl). Note that the mountain hiking trails are not always marked in Armenia, so if you are not an experienced hiker, it’s better to go with a guide.

Pamper yourself with world-class hospitality

After a day of cultural exploration, trekking in the mountains or a rafting adventure you can reward yourself with the best traditions of Armenian hospitality in Avan Dzoraget Hotel by Tufenkian Heritage Hotels. Located right on Debed River, the Hotel offers a combination of top-notch modern hospitality with traditional design elements. Here you can also savor local and international dishes in the restaurant and the open-air terrace, have a drink in the relaxing lounge area or chill out by the indoor swimming pool.


Did we manage to stir your traveler’s spirit? Perhaps, yes. So, all you need to do is pack your suitcases to travel to Armenia. Also, stay tuned to our blog for more inspiring ideas about places to explore and things to experience in this beautiful country!


Text by AmatunyCopywriting

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