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Smbataberd Fortress Trail

Smbataberd Fortress Trail

10.6 km

Things to see

Jewish Cemetery
Tsakhats Kar Monastery
Smbataberd Fortress
Located high above Armenia's wine country, this trail will have you marvelling at the 5th century Smbataberd Fortress, and then lead you down to an 800-year-old Jewish cemetery.

You’ll start in the village of Artabyunk and make your way up to the fortress. After admiring the views (maybe even spotting a herd of bezoar goats), you’ll descend into a meadow, only to hike up again, this time to the Tsakhats Kar monastery complex. The rest of the trail is downhill to the village of Yeghegis. Five minutes away from the village, you’ll find the Jewish cemetery, where you can still read Hebrew and Aramaic inscriptions on some of the tombstones. Just ask a local person to direct you. You may end up drinking homemade vodka and eating delicious barbecue—don’t say we didn’t “warn” you.
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Oscar A.
Great trail that leads to two spectacular historical sites, each with wonderful views of the valley. Watch out for cows, although they're friendly and lazy.
Justin Powell
This is an excellent moderate hike with outstanding views - say 4+ hours when you throw in the destinations. I went out and back from Yeghegis village, which gave a steady uphill path and a view of the fort. Easy to follow. Don't forget to see the ruined monastery building just west of the Tsakhats Kar chapels, it must have been quite impressive in the day! There is a water fountain on the road going through central Yeghegis to top off afterwards.
Nika Chirskaia
Josephine Lucie
Nice and easy hike. Took me about 4h including long breaks at the monastery and fortress. Nice views, easily findable and walkable path and actually the only hike in Armenia where i met other hikers (in late October 2022).
Stefan Kraushaar
Easy to find trail (well marked) with spectacular views. Due to the rainy weather we left out the monastery, the fortress was great.
Peter Ochieano
A wonderful area to spend a few days. I followed shepherd trails down from the Selim Pass through the big sky pastureland, eventually joining up with this trail. In how many other countries can you just rock up at a ruined fortress and pitch a tent? I LOVE Armenia!
Katherine Wang
Fun day hike. We started from Yegheghis, climbed to Smbataberd then to the monastery. It was easy to find and follow the trail, and was quite rewarding for the effort. There was a group of other hikers that we saw for a moment but otherwise we were alone and it was relaxing and beautiful
Senta Huemer
Easy to find trail with two wonderful sights. We went it the other way round, from Yeghegis to Smbataberd, then Tsaghats Khar and down to Artubynk. We enjoyed the walk a lot, beautiful scenery and very peaceful.
marjorie brottier
A pretty nice hike to discover a beautiful fortress with a view on the whole valley of Yeghegis. And then the monastery with stunning katchkars.
Jonathan Oettle
Can do it as a round trip from Yeghegis - start the trail in reverse, fortress first, then monastery, and once descended from the monastery there's a trail pulling off to the left which is an alternative route down to yeghegis.


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