My personal recommendations for you on 11 amazing things to do in the capital city of Armenia, Yerevan to make your time worthy!
1-Watch The City From The Cascade Stairs
The Cascade is a big and long stairway made of limestone in Yerevan, Armenia. It connects the downtown Yerevan with the Monument neighborhood.
For me, Cascade was one of the most fun and alluring places in Yerevan to chill. The coolest thing is that one might see the enormous Mount Ararat clearly from Cascade (if you are lucky enough to not to get caught by never ending mist just like I did). Apart from the magnificent view of Ararat, there lies a beautiful park right before the stairs where you can see various and meticulously made contemporary art works. The park is surrounded with cafes and all of them have pretty tasty food!
I would personally recommend you to opt for The Green Bean, for they have the tastiest coffee in Yerevan. It is a minute walk away from Cascade. Sit where-ever you see fit and sip your drink while glancing at beautiful Yerevan and glorious Ararat! It kinda makes you feel above the clouds!
2-Visit Tsitsernakaberd Museum
The Armenian Genocide Memorial Complex is Armenia’s official memorial dedicated to the victims of the Armenian Genocide, built in 1967 on the hill of Tsitsernakaberd in Yerevan. (Wikipedia)
If you want to learn about the historical view of Armenians and the series of events occurred in 1915, this museum would give you a pretty clear picture of the history from the perspective of Armenians. Excluding the politics, I shall say that I learned tons of different things during my visit to this museum.
The entrance is free. On Mondays, the museum is closed! Working hours: 11am-5pm! It costs 1000-1500 drams to get to the museum from the taxi stop right in front of the Cascade Park. This is not the taximeter price. Just tell the driver where you want to go and ask the price in advance. Incase there is traffic the driver might ask slightly more (maybe 500-1000 drams more). Do not pay more than 2000 drams.
Upon visiting the museum, proceed towards the Genocide Monument. Moreover, do not forget to take a walk in the garden abutting the museum. Overall the complex is beautifully built and I am sure that you will enjoy your time there!
3-Visit The Saint Gregory The Illuminator Cathedral
The Saint Gregory the Illuminator Cathedral, a.k.a the Cathedral of Yerevan. It is currently the biggest cathedral of the Armenian Apostolic Church in the world.
This enormous religious complex is mind-blowing. For sure you wouldn’t want to miss seeing the biggest church in Armenia!
Do not forget to buy a bunch of candles and visit the small chapel at the right side of the museum. Also after visiting the museum, you can take a walk at the Circular Park which starts right near the cathedral. It takes around 20-25 minutes to reach the city center if you follow the park towards north. I highly recommend you to take this route back to the center for you might run into some authentic Armenian street settings!
4-Have Food At A Well-Rated Armenian Restaurant
Armenia is an affordable tourist destination and even if you are a budget traveler like me, for sure you will find the prices quite reasonable. So why not treat yourself with a traditional lavish dinner?!
Yerevan abounds in restaurants with amazing food and high quality service. In my opinion, one should definitely try out some fancy Armenian restaurants to make his/her trip unforgettable. I did not get the chance to try many fancy places but among the ones I have been to, I would strongly recommend Lavash Restaurant. It blew my mind!! The food, interior, service and overall atmosphere were beyond perfect.
Let’s say that you feel like treating yourself properly. Assuming that you order a starter, a few glasses of wine, main dish and desert, the approximate amount you would end up paying would be something like 6000-8000 drams which makes something around 12-16 Euros. Pretty amazing isn’t it?
NOTE: Depending on the day and season, the restaurant might get fully reserved quite fast. To avoid the hassle I suggest you to make a reservation. +374 10 608800
5-Check Out The History Museum Of Armenia
It is regarded as Armenia’s National Museum and is located on Republic Square in Yerevan. The museum has a vast collection and exhibition starting from the early ages of humanity and stretches all the way to 20th century.
Armenia is indeed one of the oldest nations in the world with a mind-blowing history! Christianity was adopted by the Armenians first which surely is a very prominent achievement in history. The entrance is 2000 drams.
If you are interested in knowing the Armenian history, you would spend minimum 2 hours, in the museum. However if you are not a history enthusiast, 45 min must be enough for you to get a general picture of Armenian history.
6-Have A Tasty Breakfast At Eat&Fit Cafe
MY FAVOURITE PLACE IN YEREVAN! Eat&Fit is a very cosy cafe where you can eat healhty and mouth watering tasty food.
I think this place is a must-do in Yerevan so make sure you add Eat&Fit to your list!
Green Elephant (breakfast plate), Avocado Toast, Smoothie Bowl and Banana Pancakes were the dishes I tried and loved! They also have amazing coffee. During my 10 days trip, I have been there 4 times so Eat&Fit really makes you addicted to itself.
A proper lavish breakfast would cost around 4000 drams.
7-Walk On The Northern Avenue
Northern Avenue is located in downtown Yerevan, just near the Freedom Square and it is the most lively pedestrian avenue of the city. The avenue is home to luxury residencial buildings, fancy shops and many other cafes, restaurants etc.
Northern Avenue is one of the main attractions of the city and it feels very classy to be frank. Surprisingly it is super clean and neat! If you happen to go to Yerevan onset of New Years, you will get the chance to see the beautiful Christmas Market on the avenue.
Just take a long walk on the street. Whenever you feel tired or feel like snacking upon I suggest you to stop by at Cinnabon and grab a cinnamon roll! Perhaps the one I ate was the tastiest cinnamon rolls I have ever had.
Big cinnamon roll is 1300 drams (around 2.5 euros), small one is 900 drams (less than 2 Euros).
8-See The Main Churches In Yerevan
Armenian Orthodoxy carries one of the most unique characteristics in terms of customs, architecture of churches, ornaments and religious artisanship. It is possible to learn elaborately about Armenian Orthodoxy just by visiting the churches in Yerevan for they sum up all these unique features!
Apart from The Saint George the Illuminator Cathedral, I will recommend 3 other churches to you: Holy Mother of God Kathoghike Church, Zoravor Surp Astvatsatsin Church and Saint Sargis Vicarial Church.
The walking route on Google Maps is below. It takes around 35 minutes to walk and 1.5 hours to visit these 3 alluring churches. Upon visiting these churches, you will get a clear picture of the way Armenian Orthodox churches look like. Moreover, the yards of these religious complexes abound with old stone carvings and ancient relics. Do not forget checking them out!
9-Shop From Vernisagge Market
Vernissage is a very beautiful market place located inside the park with dozens of different stalls.
You can find various souvenirs, artworks and traditional works of Armenian wooden artisanship. I think Vernissage market is the best place to bring back some memories from Armenia to home. Overall, prices might be considered reasonable.
Even if you don’t want to buy anything. Just walk around and chat with some sellers. For sure they are the ones with interesting stories. Also surprisingly most of the sellers are quite fluent in English.
10-Explore The Oldest Part Of Yerevan: Kond
Kond is the oldest district in Yerevan. Narrow stony streets, roads, which are not paved, small houses and silence.
At first sight, Kond might seem shady and unsafe. I totally understand because I had the exact same impression. However no worries, it is perfectly safe and Kond awaits for you to explore its mysterious streets! You might even stumble upon some locals and have chat with them.
On Google Maps, if you follow the circular road, it would show you the area in detail and you would cover most of the notable spots of this medieval neighborhood. Depending on your speed, it takes around 30-40 minutes to complete the circular route.
One small advice I would give for you to stop by the St. Hovhannes Church which is literally 5 minutes away from Kond. This spot is not very popular among travelers, however I found it to be one of the most tranquil religious complexes in Yerevan. Like many other churches, its yard is full of ancient relics and alluring Armenian stone carvings.
11-Put Your Phone Away And Get Lost In The Streets
One thing you should definitely do is to put your phone away and walk around the streets without checking any location providers. I really believe that there are many amazing hidden spots to explore in Yerevan and they are not on internet.
It might sound cliche but just get lost in the streets of Yerevan. I myself did that and discovered great places.
Also some people will approach and ask where are you from. Locals are always eager to start conversations with you which is pretty cool I think. For me one the most surprising things about Yerevan was young generation’s proficiency in English. Many of them are quite fluent and eager to get to know you.
Here are some spots I discovered while getting lost in Yerevan.