Spectacular Custom Tours to Central Asia, the Caucasus and Beyond

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Discover the Hidden Riches of the Caucasus

Duration of this Trip 13 Days Priced From $5,700 per person

The Caucasus countries of Georgia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan each hold unique enchantments for travelers to discover. Often considered the bridge between Europe and Asia, these lands are nestled between Russia, Turkey, and the Black and Caspian Seas. Trek through mountainous terrain, take a moonlight swim in the warm waters, taste unforgettable Georgian wine, dance under the minarets of Azerbaijan, and admire Armenia's astonishingly beautiful capital Yerevan. In a land of forgotten wilderness, ancient cities and traditions that span Christianity and Islam, Caucasus travel can be the most exciting adventure of your life!

At a Glance

Duration

13 Days

Priced From

$5,700 per person

Departures

  • September 12-24, 2016
  • October 3-15, 2016
  • November 1-13 2016
  • April 10-22, 2017
  • May 5-17, 2017
  • June 4-16, 2017

Itinerary

Day 1: Baku, Azerbaijan
Day 2: Gobustan
Day 3: Baku – Shemakha – Sheki
Day 4: Sheki – Azerbaijan/Georgia border – Lagodekhi – Telavi, Georgia
Day 5: Telavi
Day 6: Sighnaghi – Tbilisi
Day 7: Tbilisi
Day 8: Tbilisi – Mtskheta – Gori – Tbilisi
Day 9: Tbilisi – Kazbegi – Tbilisi
Day 10: Tbilisi – Dmanisi – Georgia – Guguti, Armenia border – Pushkino, Armenia
Day 11: Amberd – Saghmosavank – Metsamor – Echmiadzin – Yerevan
Day 12: Garni – Geghard – Yerevan
Day 13: Departure

Itinerary

Day 1: Baku, Azerbaijan

Arrival at Baku Heydar Aliyev Airport. You will be met by our guide and driver and will be accommodated at the hotel. Then we will explore the fascinating inner city of medieval Baku- the Icheri Sheher. Visit the Shirvanshah Palace, the Maiden Tower, the landmark of Baku, the Friday Mosque; and the colorful caravansary – the wayside "hotel" of Silk Road merchants and their caravans. In the afternoon, visit Atashgah, the temple of the fire worshippers, and Yanar Dag, the burning mountain. Atashgah means "the House of Fire or place of fire". Enjoy hearing the stories and legends of the area's Zoroastrian past at the museum of Atashgah.
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Day 2: Baku – Gobustan – Baku

We'll drive to nearby Gobustan to admire the 40,000 year old rock paintings at the open air UNESCO Heritage Site and visit the archaeological museum there. On our return to Baku there will be time to enjoy the many boutiques, cafes and shops at Fountain Square and learn more about your local hosts.

Day 3: Baku – Shemakha – Sheki, Azerbaijan

Depart for the Caucasus Mountains in northwest Azerbaijan. The dry landscape gives way to a densely forested mountain area. En route we'll visit the distinctive lunar landscape of the mud volcanoes, the Diri Baba Shrine in Maraza, the Yeddi Gumbez Tomb and the Juma Mosque in Shemakha. Continue to Sheki where we overnight at the 5-star Sheki Saray Hotel.

Day 4: Sheki – Azerbaijan/Georgia border – Lagodekhi – Telavi, Georgia

Visit the colorful bazaar and the summer palace of the royal Sheki Khans with its magnificent frescoes and stained glass. Tour the Sheki Museum and Fortress. Depart for the Georgia border and meet with your Georgian guide and driver. Lunch is hosted by a local Georgian family. We'll learn about village life here with visits to vineyards, orchards, bee hives and carpentry shops and studios. Help bake Georgian bread, shoti, on the walls of a tone, a round, fire brick oven, delicious hot and fresh! Continue to the beautiful Gremi Church and on to a winery for a tour and tasting of aromatic Georgian wines known for their fine character. Have dinner at the home of a local family. Overnight at a exotic georgian guesthouse in Telavi.

Day 5: Telavi

In the morning the magnificent Alaverdi Cathedral and monastery complex is our first stop and then the old and new Shuamta churches. We'll visit a village wine cellar managed by the local grape growers, and tour the 19th century estate of Duke Chavchavadze with its beautiful garden and house-museum. We try a glass of Tsinandali wine and include another winery known for its excellent Georgian wines before returning to Telavi for dinner and overnight at a family guesthouse.

Day 6: Telavi – Sighnaghi – Tbilisi, Georgia

This morning we travel to local wine cellars to taste homemade wines and see how the locals make their wine. We'll taste and learn the process for making Churchkhela, a sweet Georgian wine. Later we travel to the fortified town of Sighnaghi, which has quaint cobbled streets and wooden architecture, and lovely views down to the Alazani Valley. En route we stop at Bodbe Nunnery, which houses the tomb of St. Nino, a maiden from Cappadocia who converted Georgia to Christianity as early as 337 AD. After visiting the ethnographical-historical museum and another local wine cellar, we drive to Tbilisi for dinner at a local restaurant. Overnight at the 4-star Hotel.

Day 7: Tbilisi, Georgia

Tblisi is a lovely city along the steep banks of the Mtkvari River. During the morning walking tour of Tbilisi's narrow streets in the old town, you will understand the city's history through its religious and secular architecture from early centuries to current times. Located on the southern edge of Europe, here you'll find an historical mixture of architecture, a variety of religious buildings; churches, synagogues and mosques, picturesque 19th century houses with multi-colored wooden balconies and even the subtle influence of Persian design. You visit the therapeutic sulfur baths which made an unforgettable impression on celebrity visitors such as Pushkin, Lermontov and Dumas. Later we visit the State History Museum, the impressive Sameba (Trinity) Cathedral and the extraordinary Dry Bridge art and flea market. Dinner at a local restaurant.

Day 8: Tbilisi – Mtskheta – Gori – Tbilisi

Sightseeing morning drive to the ancient capital and religious centre of Georgia: 3,000-year old Mtskheta. Among the historical gems we will explore are the 6th century Jvari Church and 11th century Svetitskhoveli Cathedral where the Robe of Christ is buried. Both are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. We also visit the Bagineti pagan archaeological site, which dates back to the 1st c. BCE. In Gori, the heart of the Kartli region, we will visit the Stalin Museum, this being his birthplace, and the UNESCO Uplistsikhe Cave Town site. Settlement dates from the Iron Age, the town eventually became a center along the Silk Road. Uplistsikhe is an intriguing complex hewn from sandstone with dwelling quarters, wine cellars, bakeries, a theatre, and a three-nave basilica. In the late afternoon, return to Tbilisi for dinner at a local restaurant.

Day 9: Tbilisi – Kazbegi – Tbilisi

Today we travel up to the famous Georgian Military Highway which leads to the
Georgian-Russian border. On the way we visit the 17th century Ananuri architectural complex of two churches and a fortress overlooking the Zhinvali Water Reservoir. The breathtaking drive through the high Caucasus Mountains and along the Tergi River brings us to Kazbegi, the main town in the region. There we board a 4-wheel drive vehicle for the trip up through alpine landscapes of verdant valleys and snowy summits to the 14th c. Gergeti Trinity Church at 7,119 ft. Weather permitting you may see of one of the highest glaciers in The Caucasus, Mt. Kazbegi which rests at 16,558ft. We return to Tbilisi via Kazbegi for dinner.

Day 10: Tbilisi – Dmanisi – Georgia – Guguti, Armenia border – Pushkino, Armenia

In the morning we visit the archaeological site at Dmanisi, where the skulls of Zezva and Mzia, early hominids believed to be the first Europeans were found. Experts believe the fossilized bones date to about 1.8 million years ago and are the oldest indisputable remains of humans discovered outside of Africa. Next, we drive to the Georgia-Armenia border (Guguti) to change our guide and vehicle for our tour of Armenia. Near the 10th to 11th century Lori-Berd fortress we also visit early Bronze Age chamber tombs. Dinner and overnight at a Bed & Breakfast in Pushkino.

Day 11: Pushkino – Amberd – Saghmosavank – Metsamor – Echmiadzin – Yerevan, Armenia

On our drive to the Aragatsotn region, we stop at the Alphabet Park where stone letters of the Armenian alphabet stand alongside a statue of Mkhitar Gosh, the Armenian scholar, writer, public figure, thinker and priest. The medieval fortress of Amberd, built on the slopes of Mount Aragats at the confluence of the Arkashen and Amberd rivers features an 11th century church known for its splendid dome. Next we tour the 13th century Saghmosavank monastic complex situated atop a precipitous gorge carved by the Kasagh River. In the Armavir region, we'll visit the Metsamor Historical-Archeological Site and Museum. Nearby are Neolithic stone circles dating to 5000 BC. We drive to Echmiadzin, the spiritual center of Armenian Christians and Catholics. Church spires rise here against the backdrop of the most fertile valley in Armenia and the crest of Mount Ararat. We visit the cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage site. The main entrance to the cathedral is intricately carved, the interior walls and domes painted with geometric shapes and the treasury holds an incredible collection of Christian relics. On the grounds can be found beautiful khachkars, or carved stone crosses. Drive to Yerevan for dinner and overnight at the 4-star Hotel.

Day 12: Yerevan – Garni – Geghard – Yerevan, Armenia

Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, is one of the world's oldest continually inhabited cities dating back to the creation of the Erebuni Fortress on the site in 782 BC. After a brief city tour we drive to the Kotayk region to visit Geghard Monastery partially hewn from the mountainside and active during the 4th to 13th centuries. Legend has it that the lance which pierced Christ's side was kept here until it was moved to Echmiadzin. This spectacular place, included in the UNESCO World Heritage List, has its special history going back to pagan times. The acoustics of the rock-cut halls offer an excellent opportunity for church singers to try their voices. We proceed to Garni, a pagan temple from 77 AD, called the Temple of Sun, and dedicated to the heathen god Mithra. Reminiscent of the Parthenon in design, we will tour the ramparts, the ruins of the palace complex, a bathhouse and a fifth century round church. Drive back to Yerevan for our farewell dinner and overnight at the hotel.

Day 13: Yerevan, Armenia

Transfer to the airport for departure home.

Land Tour Costs

From $5,700 for 6-10 travelers

Single Supplement

$780

Scheduled Departures

  • September 12-24, 2016
  • October 3-15, 2016
  • November 1-13 2016
  • April 10-22, 2017
  • May 5-17, 2017
  • June 4-16, 2017

Trip Highlights

  • Discover the cultural treasures of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia: magnificent temples, monasteries and museums
  • Explore Azerbaijan - the land of fire, Georgia - the birthplace of wine, and Armenia - the cradle of Christianity.
  • Revel in the stunning natural beauty of the Caucasus Mountains region, its snow capped peaks and verdant valleys
  • Enjoy the warm hospitality of the people of The Caucasus
  • Visit ancient villages, exotic bazaars, traditional wineries and bakeries
  • Listen to the spirited music and enjoy the graceful dance formations of local folk troupes
  • Delight in the rich variety of Caucasian food from Georgian hachapuri to Turkish kebab!

Visited Countries

Azerbaijan - Georgia - Armenia

Visited Cities & Places

Baku, Gobustan, Shemakha, Sheki, Telavi, Mtskheta, Gori, Tbilisi, Pushkino, Amberd, Saghmosavank, Metsamor, Echmiadzin,Yerevan

Suggested Extensions

Central Asia Tour: In the Footsteps of Marco Polo

Reading Lists

Lonely Planet: Georgia, Armenia & Azerbaijan (2012)
Thomas De Waal: The Caucasus, An Introduction (2010)

What's Included

  • Visa support
  • Ground Transportation
  • Experienced English-speaking guides in all countries
  • English-speaking escort guide throughout the journey
  • Hotel accommodation (4 star hotels)
  • Meals: Breakfast and Dinner
  • Entrance fees for the sights, museums, mountains and parks
  • Wine Tasting
  • Pre Departure Travel Package along with Silk Road Gifts

What's Not Included

  • International Flights
  • Charges in hotels for additional services
  • Consular fees for the embassies

Visited Countries

Azerbaijan - Georgia - Armenia

Visited Cities & Places

Baku, Gobustan, Shemakha, Sheki, Telavi, Mtskheta, Gori, Tbilisi, Pushkino, Amberd, Saghmosavank, Metsamor, Echmiadzin,Yerevan

Suggested Extentions

Central Asia Tour: In the Footsteps of Marco Polo

Reading Lists

Lonely Planet: Georgia, Armenia & Azerbaijan (2012)
Thomas De Waal: The Caucasus, An Introduction (2010)

Thank you for your interest in Silk Road Treasure Tours. We're looking forward to providing you with the trip of a lifetime. Please take a moment to complete and submit the form below. You can also call us at 1-888-745-7670 (or email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) to discuss all the aspects of the tour and reserve your tour.

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Discover the Hidden Riches of the Caucases Tour

A 13 day tour available as scheduled group tour or as custom private tour

Scheduled Departures

  • September 12-24, 2016
  • October 3-15, 2016
  • November 1-13 2016
  • April 10-22, 2017
  • May 5-17, 2017
  • June 4-16, 2017

Land Tour Costs

From $5,700 for 6-10 travelers

Single Supplement

$780