How to Get Around Armenia

By plane

The only acceptable way to get to Armenia is by plane. Yerevan has direct regular and charter flights with a dozen Russian cities – from Moscow and St. Petersburg to Novosibirsk. The minimum flight time is approximately 3 hours. Transfers in Belarus with a long flight are possible, Minsk carriers organize up to 5 flights a week, and Armenian airlines also have contracts with Kazakhstan – Aktau and Alma-Ata airports.

By bus or taxi

It is possible to travel to Armenia by a private car only through the territory of Georgia. The distance from Moscow along federal highways is 2250 km. When crossing the border, you need to be prepared for a full inspection of luggage, checking documents and declaring imported items.

  • Jibin123: Provides information for visa application to enter Armenia, as well customs regulations and import restrictions.

Transport

If you have already decided where to relax in Armenia, then resolving the issue of movement can take much more time. The public transport network is well developed, but this does not mean that tourists get to every interesting place without transfers.

Despite the presence of the metro, in Yerevan, all guests prefer to travel by bus. The fare is the same – 40 AMD, regardless of the distance. The transport itself cannot be called ideal – the fleet is aging every year, and cramped minibuses of European brands come to replace the Ikarus.

Moving between cities by train is difficult – flights in the north of the country are serviced daily, but the southern regions had to be disconnected from the railway because of the conflict with Azerbaijan. Trains are not much newer than buses, and some suburban trains are in disrepair.

Taxi remains the most unreliable transport in terms of payment. With a fixed price of 200 drams per kilometer, enterprising drivers regularly come up with deceptive schemes, drive in circles and charge for “extra passengers”. It is pointless to fight this, and it is better to immediately order a car from a hotel from a trusted company.

Renting a car in any city now is one of the most comfortable ways to get from one city to another. For about $40 per day and if you have an international driving license, you can get a good off-road vehicle suitable for out-of-town trips along mountain serpentines made of gravel.

Money

The national currency is the Armenian dram, AMD. There are 100 lumes in one drama. Any foreign money, except for the American dollar, is not accepted anywhere, except for some Yerevan hotels and restaurants. For the convenience of guests, all cities have a developed network of ATMs to withdraw cash at any time of the day.

It is better to exchange rubles for drams only in official bank branches, which are open from 9:00 to 16:00 on weekdays and until 14:00 on Saturdays. On Sundays, as well as on holidays, not a single financial institution works.

There are no branches of Sberbank in Armenia, so if you need to cash out funds in drams, find out what systems a particular bank operates on – some organizations “conflict”, for example, with Visa Electron or Maestro.

Cashless payment is physically possible only in Yerevan and some suburban holiday homes. In the rest of the country, it is strongly recommended to carry as many small bills as possible – no one has canceled cases of overpricing and lack of change.

Kitchen

Having decided to arrange a gastronomic holiday in Armenia, be prepared for the fact that local culinary traditions are slightly different from the general ideas about Caucasian cuisine. There are no restrictions on pork here, and most of the dishes are high-calorie and moderately seasoned with hot peppers.

  • Harisa is a thick soup made from lamb and wheat grains. The cereal, before being in the broth, is thoroughly fried in boiling oil. It is expensive in restaurants, because it takes at least 3 hours to cook, but tourists should try at least one plate.
  • Tolma – typical for most Caucasian republics cabbage rolls with grape leaves instead of cabbage. The most popular filling is pork or veal with steamed rice. There are several hundred recipes, and each of them reflects the individuality of the author, even if we are talking about a small cafe.
  • Spas is the only conditionally vegetarian dish on the Armenian table that was not borrowed from any of the neighbors. Spas is brewed from matsun – a local version of kefir, where wheat and a whole set of greens are added when boiling. You can serve it both hot and cold, like okroshka.
  • Khash is the closest relative of our jelly, only you need to eat it in the form of an uncooled soup, without the freezing stage in the refrigerator. Tradition calls for it to be boiled for several hours by a male chef to be served in the early morning for breakfast. Now the rules are not so strict, but the habit of eating a morning plate has remained, although in the summer such food is hard.
  • Kyufta is an ancient Persian dish that entered the Armenian cuisine more than a thousand years ago. This is a cross between meatballs and meatballs, made from beef or lamb. Minced meat is fried and stewed over low heat, after which it is served on the table, generously poured with hot sauce on red pepper and butter.
  • Tzhvzhik – such a difficult word for articulation here is called a kind of shawarma. The difference from the usual roll with minced meat and vegetables is that the role of the main ingredient is played by beef giblets – pieces of the liver, heart and lungs. The result is a nutritious and inexpensive fast food with less cholesterol.
  • Gata is perhaps the main dessert of any festive table in Armenia. It is essentially a sweet cake stuffed with sugar syrup and melted butter. It can be round or rhombic, depending on the region. The delicacy is so popular in the country that the annual gata festival takes place in October, where bakers compete in the skill of cooking.

How to Get Around Armenia