Things that tour operators offer tourists to do on the New Year & Christmas
The reasons to spend the New Year and Christmas in Armenia, that may be attractive to tourists, don’t suit the locals: they are all too familiar to them. For many it’s an old saying ‘The New Year should be celebrated at home’ that keeps them from travelling. And no matter how superstitious it may seem, many remain loyal to this tradition.
Here is the list of the reasons from tour operators, offering foreigners to leave their houses and spend the New Year in Armenia:
1. Passive vacation and tasty food lovers are offered to put up at the guest houses in different regions and treat themselves to gastronomic delicacies, as well as fruits and vegetables preserved fresh for winter; and, certainly, to enjoy Armenian brandy and wines.
2. Spiritual food connoisseurs are offered to spend the Christmas in the country that was the first to adopt Christianity. For this purpose, one should stay in Armenia through January 6, since that’s the date when this holiday is marked by the Armenian Apostolic Church and the festive Christmas sermon is conducted on this very day.
A trip to the Cathedral of the Holy First-Throne Echmiadzin is also organized for tourists as part of the New Year package.
Armenia is rich in ancient churches that are scattered throughout the country. So, wherever the tourists go, they will have a chance to get familiar with the cathedrals that are always ascetic, but, at the same time, very much different from each other in terms of architectural solutions applied during their construction.
3. Those, who are fond of extraordinary things, are offered participation in some interesting New Year traditions. For example, spending the New Year Eve (December 31) in one of the Armenian cathedrals to attend the pomegranate consecration ceremony.
4. Extreme fans are offered to ascend Armenia’s snowy mountains and create themselves a festive mood by skiing down the mountains or riding a snowboard.
5. And last, but not the least, all guests are offered to enjoy Armenia’s inherent hospitality and a warm friendly environment; to go out and have fun at any time of day and night, not being concerned about one’s safety. The latter seems particularly topical in the recent time.
According to Vladimir Gevorgyan, a founder of Visit Armenia travel agency, the majority of tourists who come to celebrate the New Year in Armenia are Russian families and couples: “The prices at the guest houses outside the capital hike on these days. However, the city hotels offer rather affordable conditions. And the Russian tourists prefer spending the New Year holidays exactly in Yerevan.”