Day 3: Haghartsin Monastery to Dilijan

Distance: 17.8km
Elevation: +918m / -1,121m
Status: Unmarked

Stage description

Beginning from Haghartsin monastery, take the dirt track up and W from the car park, and then up several switchbacks in a generally NW direction, climbing the ridge and passing several small farms and haymaking fields. After approximately 3.5km you’ll emerge above the treeline. Continue following the dirt track through meadows along the ridge for another 2km to reach the pass (40.807083°N 44.849166°E), from where, on a clear day, you’ll get fantastic panoramic views across the National Park.

After the pass, you’ll begin to descend towards the treeline on a disused jeep track. Follow the track down for 2.3km until you reach a second dirt road just above the river (40.792823°N 44.840086°E). Bear S to continue towards Dilijan. (Bearing N on this track will eventually take you to the summit of Mount Ayrikar (2,781m).)

You’ll soon pass a small farm (40.788982°N 44.840487°E), at which you can try locally made honey when it’s in season. Shortly beyond the farm and a short walk off the trail to the E, you’ll find a 12th century chapel (40.786421°N 44.843273°E). Follow the track S alongside the river for 2.4km, crossing the bridge (40.782861°N 44.843301°E) and later bearing W. You’ll find a picnic area with running water next to a small stream crossing (40.767159°N 44.839377°E). The nearby area of flat ground will be suitable for camping if you don’t intend to overnight in Dilijan.

Continue for 1.1km along the track and around the spur of the hillside to enter the Dilijan suburb of Shamakhyan (40.761373°N 44.836977°E), from where the trail follows the main thoroughfare down to the M-8 main road (40.741325°N 44.837005°E). Bear E on the main road for the final 2.3km to Dilijan city centre, where you will find a tourist information centre and a number of accommodation options within a few minutes’ walk.

Route Map & Elevation Profile