Armenian Highland Trail: Vardahovit – Vernashen Trail

Vardahovit – Vernashen Trail is located in Vayots Dzor Province. The Province is home to several ancient landmarks and tourism attractions including the Areni-1 cave complex and Areni-1 winery of the Chalcolithic period, Tanahat Monastery (8th-century), Smbataberd fortress (10th-century), and Noravank monastery (13th-century). The village of Gladzor used to be the home to the 13th and 14th-century University of Gladzor. Do not forget to visit Jermuk – the spa-town, whenever you are in Vayots Dzor.

You will be impressed with amazing scenery, especially the mountain ranges all around Vayots Dzor. Beware of the diverse wild life specially birds; there are several sites for bird and animal watching along the Trail.

Overall trail data

Trail Length: 52.5km

Elevation: 2719m

Ascent: 3040m

Descent: 3547m

Difficulty: Intermediate

Rescue Service: 911, 112

Trail Functionality Symbols: Hike, Horse

Section 1: Vardahovit - Sevazhayr - Arates

Trail Length: 11.5km

Trail Duration: 5-6 Hours

Elevation: 2719m

Ascent: 783m

Descent: 874m

Difficulty: Intermediate

Trail Functionality Symbols: Hike, Horse

Section 2: Arates - Yeghegis

Trail Length: 14km

Trail Duration: 5-6 Hours

Elevation: 2418m

Ascent: 631m

Descent: 938m

Difficulty: Intermediate

Trail Functionality Symbols: Hike, Horse, Bike

Section 3: Yeghegis - Smbataberd - Artabuynq

Trail Length: 7km

Trail Duration: 5-6 Hours

Elevation: 1913m

Ascent: 395m

Descent: 488m

Difficulty: Intermediate

Trail Functionality Symbols: Hike, Horse

Section 4: Artabuynq - Shatin

Trail Length: 6.2km

Trail Duration: 2-3 Hours

Elevation: 1552m

Ascent: 115m

Descent: 396m

Difficulty: Intermediate

Trail Functionality Symbols: Hike, Horse, Bike

Section 5: Shatin - Shatinavank - Spitakavor - Vernashen

Trail Length: 13.4km

Trail Duration: 5-6 Hours

Elevation: 2148m

Ascent: 1123m

Descent: 849m

Difficulty: Intermediate

Trail Functionality Symbols: Hike, Horse

How to get there?

Considering the fact that you will start the trail somewhere and will finish it somewhere else, you will need a car-support to pick you up from 'end-points'.   

Where to stay?

Accommodation is relatively easy to arrange in vayots Dzor, both hotels and B&B's are very well managed. Do not forget to check in at Areni Wine Art in Areni Town, and Arevi Hotel in Yeghegis; you will be amazed with the hospitality and amazing views of Teqsar Mountain Range.

What to see around?

Arates Monastery

Yeghegis Monastery Complex

Smbataberd Fortress (V C.)

Spitakavor Monastery

Boloraberd (Proshaberd) Fortress (XIII c.)

Nearby destinations

Areni-1 cave complex

Areni-1 winery

Noravank Monastery

GPS track

To be published shortly

Leave No Trace

  • Plan ahead & be prepared
  • Dispose the waste properly
  • Leave what you find
  • Minimize campfire impacts
  • Respect the wildlife
  • Be considerate of other visitors

Roads conditions

It is winter time! Check out road conditions before heading to the road! Beware of the snow & ice layer!

Vanadzor - Alaverdi section of the M6 Interstate highway stretching from Yerevan to Georgian border is temporarily closed. You can use Vanadzor-Stepanavan-Odzun-Alaverdi bypassing road.

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