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Noravank Trail

Noravank Trail

1-2h
2.5 km
1587m
1384m
Medium

Things to see

Noravank Monastery
The 13th century Noravank Monastery, one of Armenia’s most iconic monuments, sits high above the Gnishik River Canyon, through which this trail winds… Get ready for some epic photos!  

This trail serves as an interesting way to walk down into the canyon and Noravank Monastery, or as a connection to other trails in the area that are linked below. 

The Gnishik River Canyon is part of the Arpa Protected Landscape, home to almost 900 species of plants and around 525 species of animals, including the majestic bezoar ibex, a species indigenous to Armenia and an all-round mountain climbing badass. You may just spot a herd of these guys while making your way through the canyon (if you’re not posing for photos against the backdrop of the canyon’s impressive, rocky walls, that is)! The Arpa Environmental Foundation, which manages the reserve, has placed informational signs throughout the trail about the flora and fauna species that live there, plus info on cultural sites. 

You can hike this trail and others in the Protected Landscape beginning either at Noravank Monastery, or in Areni village 10km away. Other routes through the reserve, like the Chukar, Bezoar, and Gnishik trails, are marked by signposts. Check out their trail profiles on our app or website to learn more, and follow the appropriate signs while in the reserve to access them!
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Anna V
We started this trail from Noravanq. The views are amazing. But the trail itself is quite challenging. First 30 minutes you walk down the gravel path, and the gravel is falling with every step so you need to move slowly. Besides, the trail is not easy to find, and we lost some time after choosing the wrong direction. Please note that the trail starts by the information stand "Barev trails". If you plan to combine this trail with other possible trails in the area (Chukar trail, Bezoar Goat trail), we'd recommend starting not from the monastery, but from the road to keep your energy for the rest part of the hike. Don't forget to take enough water with you.
Liz Debattista
The start of the trail was great, amazing views and nice path. (No scary dogs in the bus - thanks to the other reviewer for the warning.) But… once we crossed the road, the path up to the monastery wasn’t clear and we found ourselves scrambling up a hill, one false move and we would have fallen. It was scary and exhausting. We’d left our car at the start of the trail so going back we walked down the road and picked up the trail from the main road.
Martijn Van Adrichem
Before you start the hike climb up the rocks behind the monastery for a good view of the monastery. When you start the trail, the descent back to where you cross the road is not great. Quite steep parts with gravel which makes it easy to slip. Might be a better idea to just walk down the road that cars take and then start the trail from there. From there on the trail is very nice, with some beautiful views of the valley. Beware that the trail ends up at a rather empty road in the middle of nowhere, i hitchhiked back to the main road from there.
Petra Jankovics
Maral Firkatian
We started the trail at Noravank. If you are travelling by taxi, this is an easy landmark as everyone knows where it is. It was a bit treacherous getting down to cross the road because of the loose rocks and dirt, but if you are careful and test your footing as you go, it's manageable. The trail on the other side of the road is much easier to follow and although it is relatively short in distance it is sufficiently challenging and will give you a good work out with lovely views of the valley. Make sure to stay hydrated. We hiked in late October when the weather was perfect- sunny and cool, around 23°.
Rosanda McGrath
Beautiful walk with breathtaking views and a steep climb up to the monastery
Sarah Goudeau
Only 3kms but amazing! I stopped every step to take picture. To do in the afternoon! Thanks
Peter Ochieano
A nice, little trail. Easy to hitch to Noravank, but there's much less traffic on the other road between Areni and Nor Amaghu. The river provides a nice, little bathing spot on a hot day. Just before Nor Amagu there's a farmhouse with a run-down, yellow bus out front that looks like a place where hippies would live. Rather, it is the residence of several big, snarling dogs who look and behave like they'd love to attack and devour a poor hiker. Remain calm as you walk. They will follow and bark but never charge or bite. Their job is to keep people away from the cows, and they certainly did a good job of that when I passed through!
Danya Kushnarevich
Nice hike, but only if you go from top to bottom. Great views, but I would suggest to do two hikes in one day - start with Bezoar Goat Trail and then go down with Noravank trail.
James Kilner
Hot but excellent route that delivers great views of Noravank. Perhaps the loop needs to be completed?

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