Armenia is a former Soviet republic found in the mountainous Caucasus region between Europe and Asia. Considered to be one of the earliest Christian civilisations, it’s noted by religious sites including the Greco-Roman Temple of Garni and 4th century Etchmiadzin Cathedral, which are the headquarters of the Armenian Church. Near Mount Ararat, a dormant volcano just across the border in Turkey can be found the pilgrimage site of Khor Virap Monastery.
Armenia is rich with stone. The uniqueness of national Armenian Architecture is considered to be due to the diversity of Armenian stones, significantly the tufa stone. It has a unique and exceptional diversity, with artistic and mechanical features. Khachkar or cross-stone is a delightful phenomenon in Armenian Art. The khachkars are the best creation of Armenian Architecture. Armenia will offer you one of the most unforgettable trips of your life. This small country is so diverse and beautiful.
A visa is not required to enter Armenia. British citizens and US passport holders can stay in Armenia without a visa for up to 180 days per year. The Armenian authorities have confirmed that after the UK leaves the EU, British citizen passport holders will still be able to visit Armenia for up to 180 days per year without a visa. Your passport should be valid for a minimum period of six months from the date of entry into Armenia.
How to dress:
The Armenians wear western clothes, so feel free to dress as you please. However, it is still a conservative country so be respectful in your attire. Dress code in Armenian churches and monasteries is very strict, especially for women. Female visitors must wear dresses (no trousers or shorts) and they should also wear something on their heads.
Food has a significant role in the Armenian culture and there is always time for socialising, either with friends, relatives, or unexpected visitors. It is usual for a table topped with food platters to appear before guests. The importance of food is expressed by Armenians among friends by saying, "We have bread and salt among us." By this, they mean that food represents the sustenance of life among us – friendship, bread and salt.
Tipping is a relatively new concept in Armenia, with little tipping during the Soviet era. It has become pretty well established in Yerevan, especially in restaurants and cafés, where tips are now usually expected. Anything from 10-20% is ok. On smaller bills, just leaving the change may suffice. Andante Travels will take care of gratuities to restaurant staff, local guides and drivers.