Type: Backcountry or Sidecountry
Need to Know
Beeline, Ucom and VivaCell-MTS networks are always available between Tsaghkavank (Flower Monastery) to Mount Ara. In case of emergency, call 911, a service which is available throughout Armenia.
Mount Ara is located on the borders of the Kotayk and Aragatsotn provinces. The mountain is 2,577 m high and 40 km away from Yerevan. The mountain takes its name after Ara the Beautiful (Ara Geghetsik), an Armenian mythological God and king. The mountain is also a jump off point for paragliding pilots.
The descent begins on the south slope of Mount Ara, roughly following this Mount Ara: South Ascent
. This is considered a traditional trail, as it is used by both skiers and paragliding pilots. In winter, Mt. Ara is a great tourist destination, as the weather here is clear and sunny, and the snow is soft and silky.
Visitors also have the opportunity to visit the historic site of Tsaghkavank (Flower Monastery) or Kuys Varvara (the Virgin Barbara). This is a cave shrine on the slopes of Mount Ara. The residents here celebrate Christian and sometimes even pagan holidays. There is a healing water source inside this mossy monastery that is especially used for sight ailments. The water is healing due to its zinc content, which is also helpful for diseases of the joints and muscle spasms.
In the territory of Mt. Ara, you’ll most probably come across wolves, gray or yellow foxes and rabbits. You may also meet a bear that has woken early from hibernation.