What could be better than a vacation that combines most of these aspects - national culture and rural life, authentic products, traditional cooking, interaction with locals, a guest house surrounded by pristine nature? If this is what you are looking for while exploring a new destination, then visit the gastro yards of Armenia!
In recent years, special attention has been paid to the development of agrօtourism in Armenia. In 2016, the project “Integrated Rural Tourism Development” was launched covering 60 villages across Armenia. The project, funded by the Russian Federation, was implemented by UNDP Armenia in close cooperation with the Ministry of Territorial Administration and Infrastructure of the Republic of Armenia. An important component of the “Integrated Rural Tourism Development project is the opening of Gastro Yards. They are run by villagers in their premises. Thanks to Gastro Yards, a wide selection of unique touristic destinations are available for travelers which aim to promote rural local hospitality, authentic food and beverages. In the Gastro Yards of Armenia you can taste not only Armenian dishes, but also take master classes in traditional crafts making and much more.
We bring to your attention a list of Gastro Yards that are worth a visit.
Mnatsakanyan’s Gastro Yard and Byurakan Art Studio
In Mnatsakanyan’s Gastro Yard, located in the village of Byurakan, you can watch the wine production process and take part in master classes in preparing national Armenian dishes. In the restaurant you will be offered delicious traditional dishes prepared by the Mnatsakanyan family members, homemade wine and pleasant communication with the locals. The Mnatsakanyan family tried to make this place unique and included in their menu the dish “Gharshim” made of lentils and nuts, which is difficult to find elsewhere else.
Byurakan, Aragatsotn region Phone: +37477210749, +37443951990 Email: [email protected]
Byurakan is located on the slope of Mount Aragats, several historical monuments are located here: the church of Artavazik of the 7th century, the basilica of St. Hovhannes of the 10th century, the khachkar monument of the 13th century, and impressive remains of Amberd Fortress. In addition, Byurakan is famous for its observatory, which is certainly worth a visit and take a look at the stars.
Byurakan Art Studio also functions here, where you can see how handmade paper is produced and even participate in this magic process. The studio employs professional artists and specialists.
Phone: +37455532772 Email: [email protected] URL: www.byurakanstudio.com
Arakelyans’ Gastro Yard in Pokr Vedi
The Arakelyans’ Gastro Yard is located in the village of Pokr Vedi in the immediate vicinity of Khor Virap Monastery - the place of pilgrimage and the holy place of the Armenian Apostolic Church. The Gastro Yard's list of services includes culinary master classes in cooking barbecue, lavash bread and much more, as well as a bed & breakfast hotel. But that's not all. Arakelyans are artists, therefore, a distinctive feature of this place is also a master class in drawing. If you are fond of drawing or want to try it yourself, then visit the Arakelyans’ Gastro Yard and you will not regret it. The incredible view of Mount Ararat, opening from here, will help to reveal your talent and inspire you. In addition, here you will have a great opportunity to see a stunning sunrise from Khor Virap Monastery.
Pokr Vedi, Ararat region Phone: +37498499215 Email: [email protected]
Davtyans’ Gastro Yard
The Davtyans’ family has extensive experience in home wine making and is pleased to share with everyone their experience. In the vineyard, Davtyans grows 3 types of grapes. Here in the village of Achajur, in Tavush, you can taste unique home-made white wine, authentic Armenian dishes, listen to music played on national Armenian instruments and chat with family members who will tell you everything about local traditions and culture.
Achajur, Tavush region Phone: +37477478780, +37493141377 Email: [email protected]
Yeganyans’ Gastro Yard
Yeganyans’ Gastro Yard is located in Ashtarak. In the vineyard of Yeganyans’ with an area of 5000 m² grow more than 10 varieties of grapes. Here you can stay in a guest house, enjoy Armenian homemade wine (red and white), traditional food, get acquainted with the process of wine making, go through pastry workshops and use the services of a local guide who will tell you everything you are interested in knowing about Armenia and the local people.
Ashtarak, Aragatsotn region Tel: +37499015865 Email: [email protected]
Stepanyans’ Gastro Yard
If you are a special connoisseur of wine, then you will be interested in Stepanyans’ Gastro Yard. It is located in the village of Areni, famous for its wines. Stepanyans’ vineyard covers an area of 7,000 m², where 3 varieties of grapes grow. This is a place where guests can enjoy homemade wine, delicious food and have a good time. Here you will be introduced to fruit harvesting and wine making processes, as well as master classes in beekeeping. The list of services also includes guided tours to the medieval churches of the area.
Areni, Vayots Dzor region Phone: +37499386666 Email: [email protected]
The Ashatarakats Cellar
This is a unique historical and cultural place where guests can get acquainted with the process of making vodka, enjoy delicious food, prepare Armenian confectionery products and visit the museum of local life.
Ashtarak, Aragatsotn region Phone: +37499386666 Email: [email protected]
Teger Gastro Yard and Pottery Center
A wonderful place offering master classes in pottery (ceramics and stained glass) to learn about Armenian culture. There is a guest house and a restaurant with culinary master classes in Gastro Yard, located in the village of Tegher in the Aragatsotn region of Armenia.
Teger, Aragatsotn region Tel: +37494494501 E-mail: [email protected]
Vagharshyan’s Gastro Yard
The Vagharshyans’ is located in Saghmosavan, on the banks of the Kasakh Gorge, a breathtaking view over the Ararat Valley. Here you can enjoy the harmony of soul and nature, delicious Armenian food, as well as visit Saghmosavank Monastery, founded in 1215.
Saghmosavan, Aragatsotn region Phone: +374941581385, +37444581385 E-mail: [email protected]
Mikayelyans’ Family Farm
A unique family farm in Armenia, where you can try different types of cheese made using traditional technology, familiarize yourself with the production process and enjoy the warm hospitality of the Mikaelyan family.
Gavar, Gegharkunik region Phone: +37498505027 E-mail: [email protected]
Agrotourism in Armenia is developing rapidly, so more and more interesting places are opening up here. You can get more detailed information about the Gastro Yards of Armenia and other interesting opportunities for rural tourism on the official website of the “Integrated Rural Tourism Development” project.
Choose the most suitable Gastro Yard for yourself and plan a trip to Armenia. Here you will get the experience that will forever remain in your heart!