A FAMILY AFFAIR
Head to Victory Park in the Kanaker-Zeytun district for fairground rides, boating on the lake and lots of running around in open green spaces.
More child-friendly attractions: Souvenir shopping at the open-air Vernissage flea market (held behind Republic Square metro on Nalbandyan street); tuck into sweets with fresh fruit fillings at homegrown confectionery store Grand Candy Ponchikanoc; and take a dip at Lake Sevan – a popular holiday spot that’s less than an hour’s drive away.
STEP INTO HISTORY
The medieval monastery of Geghard, in the Kotayk province, contains a number of buildings and tombs that are partially cut into the rock and surrounded by towering cliffs at the entrance to Azat Valley. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Museums to visit: History Museum of Armenia, founded in 1919, and Matenadaran Manuscript Museum, which houses a rich collection of ancient manuscripts and books.
Since its first performance – Swan Lake in 1935 – the Opera House has been the pride of Armenia’s musical culture. Prepare to marvel at the work of architect Alexander Tamanyan, whose building is steeped in classical beauty.
Other cultural picks:
Cafesjian Center for the Arts is the place to go to view contemporary works. Ascend the giant stairs at the Cascade for beautiful views of the city and toward Mount Ararat.
This popular eatery in the heart of Yerevan has been serving up tasty Armenian fare since 1998. There, you can try a unique take on classic dolma – ground meat mixed with rice, herbs, spices and wrapped in grape leaves.
Malkhas Jazz Club
The best place in Yerevan to enjoy jazz music over dinner, this laid-back spot often requires advance booking. The venue is named after its owner Levon Malkhasyan – the best jazz pianist in the country who often performs there at the weekend. The service, food and atmosphere is as excellent as the music.
A central abode
In the heart of the famed Republic Square, Armenia Marriott Hotel Yerevan is housed in a Soviet-era institution where rooms are truly sprawling. Indulge in Italian cuisine at Cucina and treat the children to homemade delights at the cute ice-cream parlour.
Only 200 metres from the National Art Gallery, Grand Hotel Yerevan is the place to stay for a glimpse of old- world glamour. The handsome ochre building is framed by towering white columns and boasts modern rooms with balconies, fantastic city views and a rooftop pool.