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Land of the Golden Fleece + Azerbaijan Extension
19 days
Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia - Trip code GFA

Land of the Golden Fleece + Azerbaijan Extension

Journey through the Caucasus region of Central Asia and discover the diversity of a land straddling two continents, which formed part of the ancient Silk Road. We explore lively cities, walk through spectacular mountain scenery, sample the local tipple and learn about the history and culture of some of the most fascinating states of the former USSR.

Trip highlights

  • Garni - Walk into an impressive basalt gorge overlooked by a 1st century Hellenistic temple
  • Lake Sevan - Enjoy the sublime beauty of the largest lake in the Caucasus region
  • Tbilisi - Wander through the Old Town of Georgia's cosmopolitan capital
  • Vardzia - Discover a fascinating and remote 12th century cave city carved out of a cliff
  • Kakheti - Explore Georgia's wine region and enjoy a home-cooked lunch with a local family
  • Baku - Marvel at the contrasts of Azerbaijan's chaotic capital
Accommodation grade:
Standard
Our standard, mid-range accommodation offers a good level of service, often with other amenities such as a restaurant, bar, garden or swimming pool. Generally rooms will be comfortable with en suite facilities.
Trip pace:
Full on
Full on paced trips are for travellers who like their holidays packed with activities and experiences, moving on quickly from place to place with lots of early starts and long, busy days. Some may find them tiring, but others get a buzz from packing their precious holiday-time as chock-a-block full of new experiences as possible!
Group Size:
12 - 18
Maximum group size ranges from between 6 to 20 people, depending on the type of trip, the transport and accommodation used and activities included. We rarely have groups that are smaller than five or six people and the average is 12 people plus an Explore leader.

Itinerary

Itineraries on some departure dates may differ, please select the itinerary that you wish to explore.

Why book this trip

This tour takes in three of the states of the former USSR and showcases the history, culture and stunning mountain landscapes of the region. Located along part of the Silk Road in the Caucasus region, Armenia and Georgia straddle Europe and Asia but feel very eastern European, a testament to their Soviet past, while Azerbaijan has a more classic Central Asian feel. Our extension to Azerbaijan is the perfect excuse to sample this little visited country.

What's included?

Included meals
  • Breakfast: 18
  • Lunch: 5
  • Dinner: 6
Transport
  • Bus
Trip staff
  • Explore Tour Leader
  • Driver(s)
  • Local Guide(s)
Award Winning Explore Leaders
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Price Guarantee Promise
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Airport Transfers
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FairFX currency card
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Trip information

Country information

Armenia Holidays & Tours

Climate

Due to the fact that Armenia is on a high landlocked plateau the temperature extremes are pronounced: winters are cold and summers can be very hot, spring and autumn are widely regarded as the best times to visit.

Time difference to GMT

+4

Plugs

2 Pin Round

Religion

Christian

Language

Armenian

Azerbaijan Trips

Climate

Azerbaijan experiences extremes of climate: while Baku and the Caspian coastal areas are hot and humid in mid-summer, May to September are the best months to visit the mountainous north-west.

Time difference to GMT

+4

Plugs

2 Pin Round

Religion

Islam

Language

Azerbaijani

Georgia Holidays & Tours

Climate

Georgia has a temperate climate with warm dry periods from June to September. Early and late in the season, temperatures can drop to sub-zero at higher altitude.

Time difference to GMT

+4

Plugs

2 Pin Round

Religion

Christian

Language

Georgian

Budgeting and packing

Optional activities

Mtskheta - Visit pagan ruins at Bagineti archaeological site: US$ 5pp Tbilisi - Rustaveli Theatre (Day 7) minimum pax 5: US$ 5 pp Batumi - Full day excursion to the Black Sea coast (Day 9) minimum of 15 required: US$ 30pp [If this takes place Day 9's sightseeing may be moved to the morning of day 10]

Clothing

Weather is changeable in the north and mountains; it can be cool especially at night, bring a warmer jacket. Raingear is essential at all times. In remote parts of Armenia and Georgia and Azerbaijan you should avoid shorts and vest tops; long trousers or skirts are ideal. A headscarf is essential for visiting churches and mosques.

Footwear

Comfortable shoes for visiting sites and hilly towns; sandals; lightweight walking/trail boots for optional day walks.

Luggage

20kg

Luggage: On tour

One main piece of baggage and daypack. Remember you are expected to carry your own luggage so don't overload yourself. If you are planning on taking any prescription medications with you on tour it is recommended that you also carry a prescription issued by your doctor.

Equipment

A waterbottle, torch, swimsuit, sunhat, suncream and sunglasses.

Tipping

Explore leader
At your discretion you might also consider tipping your Tour Leader in appreciation of the efficiency and service you receive.
Local crew
Although entirely voluntary, tipping is a recognised part of life in this region of the world. Some local staff will look to members of the group for personal recognition of particular services provided. Accordingly, you should allow US$ 30. In order to make things easier for you, the Tour Leaders may organise a group's tips kitty and if this is the case, they will account for it throughout the tour.
Country Information

Armenia Holidays & Tours

Food and drink

The costs for meals may vary depending upon location, type of restaurant and number of courses eaten and so the prices given are an average guide. Local restaurants located off the beaten track may be less expensive, whereas an upmarket restaurant located in the centre of a major city may charge more.


Lunch price
£6
Dinner price
£12.00 - 16.00
Beer price
£2.00 - 4.00
Water price
£0.50 - 1.00
Foreign Exchange
Local currency
Dram.
Recommended Currency For Exchange
We recommend you take your money in undamaged mixed denomination US$ notes issued post 1993.
Where To Exchange
Most major towns - your Tour Leader will advise you on arrival.
ATM Availability
Only in major towns.
Credit Card Acceptance
Very limited.
Travellers Cheques
Travellers cheques are difficult to change.

Azerbaijan Trips

Food and drink

The costs for meals may vary depending upon location, type of restaurant and number of courses eaten and so the prices given are an average guide. Local restaurants located off the beaten track may be less expensive, whereas an upmarket restaurant located in the centre of a major city may charge more.


Dinner price
£12.00 - 16.00
Beer price
£2.00 - 4.00
Water price
£0.50 - 1.00
Foreign Exchange
Local currency
Manat.
Recommended Currency For Exchange
We recommend you take your money in undamaged mixed denomination US$ notes issued post 1993.
Where To Exchange
Most major towns - your Tour Leader will advise you on arrival.
ATM Availability
Only in major towns.
Credit Card Acceptance
Very limited.
Travellers Cheques
Travellers cheques are difficult to change

Georgia Holidays & Tours

Food and drink

The costs for meals may vary depending upon location, type of restaurant and number of courses eaten and so the prices given are an average guide. Local restaurants located off the beaten track may be less expensive, whereas an upmarket restaurant located in the centre of a major city may charge more.


Lunch price
£5
Dinner price
£7
Beer price
£1.00 - 3.00
Water price
£0.3
Foreign Exchange
Local currency
Lari.
Recommended Currency For Exchange
We recommend you take your money in undamaged mixed denomination US$ notes issued post 1993.
Where To Exchange
Most major towns - your Tour Leader will advise you on arrival.
ATM Availability
Only in major towns.
Credit Card Acceptance
Very limited.
Travellers Cheques
Travellers cheques are difficult to change

Transport, Accommodation & Meals

Transport Information

Bus

Essential information

FCO Advice

We strongly recommend that you check your government's travel advisory for up-to-date information and advice about your destination: safety and security, entry requirements, health, local laws and customs. For UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office advice click here.

For more information from Explore about travel advice, click here
 

Under 18 immigration guidance

Please note that some countries require proof of parental consent when travelling overseas with under 18s. Please check requirements with the relevant embassy or consular office well in advance of travel if this applies to your party.

Essential Information

Once your booking has been confirmed we guarantee the price will not increase, whatever the circumstances. Before booking please ensure you have read our important tour pricing information.Booking Conditions

Visa and Passport Information

Armenia: Visas are not required for EU nationals, US & UK citizens. Georgia: Visas are not required for EU nationals, UK, Canadian or US citizens. Azerbaijan: All nationalities will require a visa prior to arrival. British passport holders are eligible to apply for an e-visa from https://evisa.gov.az/en/ which takes approximately 3 working days to process. Applicants should have access to an email account and at least 6 months validity on your passport. All other nationalities should confirm visa arrangements with the relevant embassy.


If you do require assistance in obtaining a visa then you may consider applying through Explore's recommended visa service in the UK, Travcour. See www.travcour.com to download the relevant visa application for your trip, if applicable (UK citizens only), along with details of how to apply for your visa through Travcour. The Team at Travcour will be happy to answer specific questions relating to visa applications, please call them directly on 0208 5431846.

It is your responsibility to ensure that you are in possession of a full passport, with the correct validity for your chosen destination.
 

Booking conditions

Before booking your Explore trip, please ensure that you read both our Essential Information and Booking Conditions.

Transfers

Find out more about Trip Transfer Terms and Conditions before you book.

Booking a land only package with Explore

Customers who have chosen to book on the ‘Land Only’ arrangements of our tour, please ensure that you have checked your tour specific ‘Joining Instructions’ prior to booking your own travel arrangements. Your joining instructions can be found below in the dates and prices information. 

You may also be eligible for the Free Explore Transfer.


Joining Tour Abroad

Customers booked on the ‘Land Only’ arrangements will now receive a Free Transfer, provided you arrive and depart on the tour only itinerary start and end dates. The transfers will be from the Explore designated airport or train station to the joining point of your tour, and then back from the ending point to the designated airport or train station. The exception to this rule is customers who are booked on a tour where the joining and ending point is at the designated airport or train station.  

Free transfers are not available for Self-Guided, Tailormade or Tours for Churches customers.

If you are not eligible for the Free Transfer then you will need to make your own way through to the joining and ending point. On a majority of our tours Explore will be able to provide a private transfer at an additional cost. Please ask for a quote at the time of booking.  


For more information regarding the Explore Free Transfer click here

Insurance

It is a condition of booking with Explore that you have adequate valid travel insurance. It is your responsibility to arrange appropriate travel insurance and ensure you have read and understood the full terms and conditions of your travel insurance policy to ensure that you are covered for all activities you intend to undertake whilst on the tour, including all optional activities. Your Insurance Policy must fully cover you for medical expenses and emergency repatriation to your home country. Please ensure your policy includes medical emergency helicopter evacuation in the event of illness or injury and covers the entire duration of your holiday. If you are trekking at altitude please ensure that there is no upper altitude limit which may limit or exclude cover for your trip. Medical and repatriation insurance cover is not mandatory for UK residents who are travelling on trips within the United Kingdom.
Read more information about what travel insurance is required.

Flight information

Explore offers a wide range of flexible flying options to make joining and leaving our trips easy. Read more about them here.


Flight Information

You are able to book this tour on a 'land only' basis or as a ‘flight inclusive’ package. Your flight inclusive package will be fully protected by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) ATOL protection scheme.

  

Booking a flight inclusive package with Explore

We have a good selection of flights not only from London but from many regional airports around the UK allowing us to compare fares between scheduled carriers as well as low cost and charter airlines. Our dedicated flights team will match the best flight options to your arrival and departure airport.

On our website we display a UK flight inclusive package guide price which is generally based on a London departure. To avoid paying supplements or to secure your preferred flight option, we recommend booking as early as possible, especially for peak travel dates.

Armenia Holidays & Tours

Vaccinations

Nothing compulsory but we recommend protection against malaria, typhoid, tetanus, infectious hepatitis and polio. Consult your travel clinic for latest advice on different prophylaxis available against malaria. Special Note: Visa and vaccination requirements are subject to change and should be confirmed before departure. The above is not an exhaustive list. Further information regarding vaccinations and travel health advice can be found by following the NHS and NaTHNaC links at http://www.explore.co.uk/Travelhealth/ and from your local healthcare provider.

Azerbaijan Trips

Vaccinations

Nothing compulsory but we recommend protection against malaria, typhoid, tetanus, infectious hepatitis and polio. Consult your travel clinic for latest advice on different prophylaxis available against malaria. Special Note: Visa and vaccination requirements are subject to change and should be confirmed before departure. The above is not an exhaustive list. Further information regarding vaccinations and travel health advice can be found by following the NHS and NaTHNaC links at http://www.explore.co.uk/Travelhealth/ and from your local healthcare provider.

Georgia Holidays & Tours

Vaccinations

Nothing compulsory but we recommend protection against malaria, typhoid, tetanus, infectious hepatitis and polio. Consult your travel clinic for latest advice on different prophylaxis available against malaria. Special Note: Visa and vaccination requirements are subject to change and should be confirmed before departure. The above is not an exhaustive list. Further information regarding vaccinations and travel health advice can be found by following the NHS and NaTHNaC links at http://www.explore.co.uk/Travelhealth/ and from your local healthcare provider.

Dates, prices and booking

Date
Price from

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