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Saghmosavank to Hovhannavank

Saghmosavank to Hovhannavank

7.9 km

Things to see

Saghmosavank Monastery
Hovhannavank Monastery
Gregory the Illuminator Church

Visit two historic medieval monasteries as you travel between the villages of Saghmosavan and Ohanavan. Just a 45-minute drive from Yerevan, this 8 km (5 mi) trail will take you back in time.

History and architecture buffs will not be disappointed by this trail, as the monasteries here played important roles in the history of Armenian Christendom. You’ll follow the Kasagh River Canyon while hiking between the 13th-century Saghmosavank Monastery and the 4th-century Hovhannavank Monastery. Both are perched atop the picturesque canyon. Along the way, you’ll encounter the ruins of the 4th-century Gregory the Illuminator Church.

Please note that there are actually two trails, one that goes above the canyon and one that goes into the canyon. This trail is the one that goes into the canyon, which uses old restored trails in the Saghmosavank area that gently wind you down into the river gorge. Be wary of snakes in the gorge in the spring, and keep in mind that there are two short sections where the trail consists of small boulders that need to be traversed.

How to get there

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Petr Piruncik
When snow or wet, not an easy hike at all. Be prepared for that. In any case, bring some snacks and water, don't wear flip-flops :)
Mirna Bzdigian
An amazing experience! Highly recommended to people who are not professional in hiking, but still want to try it out. The views are breathtaking and the kasagh river adds an amazing touch to the whole experience. We went from Saghmosavan to Hovhannavank, which was difficult at first while getting down the canyon, and gradually started to be less challenging and more enjoyable. Good luck!
Արև Մախսուդյան
It was a wonderful experience. The gorge has so many breathtaking views. All the way is marked and I would advice to start hiking from Hovhannavank, because the road there is much easier to go down the gorge then from Saghmosavank. Thanks a lot for the trail. Recommending everyone♡
Anna V
It was raining most of the time while we were having this autumn hike, but it still was amazing. We met no snakes :) And a nice man from Ohanavan village gave us some red apples in the end of the hike. A piece of advice: if you begin your hike from Saghmosavank, you'd better download HikeArmenia app not to miss the trail which leads down to the canyon.
Aline Yordikian
Hiking from Hovhannavank to Saghmosavank was a Wonderful experience. We stopped by Anoush's house right by Hovhannavank church to observe how they prepare lavash! Arriving to Saghmosavank was also one of the highlight of this trail because of the breathtaking view over the canyon. Enjoy Armenia!
Maral F.
Note that it is easier to get a cab back to Yerevan, or wherever you are going, from Hovhanavank, so it is best to start from Saghmosavank. That being said, it is beautiful in either direction. An easy hike, perfect for a half day outside of Yerevan.
Viktoriya Zibert
Amazing! But be aware of snakes. I met one.
Joseph DeGaetano
Nikija Kronberga
Again a nice and easy hike. The trail is well marked and easy to walk except for a few hundred meters where is very stony. The view of the gorge is super nice, but monotonous. Overall a nice hike, not too long and not too difficult. We started at Hovhannavank because of one of the reviews, thanks, that was actually easier to walk! We traveled by cab from Yerevan for 3600 dram but hitched back.
Armen Oganesyan
Виды гораздр красивее, чем показывает фото. Маршрут легкий, можно с жетьми от 10 лет. Совсем маленьких нельзя-есть участки, где надо по камням прыгать. На 3-4 ч комфортной прогулки - самое то для выходного с хорошей погодой.
Alelsei Morozov
Отличный маршрут, я прошёл в обратном направлении, так даже лучше! Снял видео, буду всем советовать и сам ещё раз обязательно вернусь!
Rita belkova
Capucine Tong
February 27th, 2022 Great hike with several points of interest : two very nice churches, nice views, impressive canyon. We started in Saghmosavank and during the first bit down on the rocks we found it tricky to find the trail and it was also a bit long. In the first descent there was a bit of snow but it was still okay.
Tatiana Nadyseva
Wonderful and easy hike
Daniel Shapiro
This is a solid trail; my friend and I started at Saghmosavank and traveled south toward Hovhannavank. Getting down into the canyon is fine; once you get there, though, you have to walk a ways through large rock fields. The river is quite nice and a good place to cool off. This hike really does not take long; we did it in 3.5 hours but we meandered around in the canyon and stopped quite a lot, including to go swimming and to check out a waterfall. It’s very doable in less time. There is relatively little shade; be warned if it’s a hot and sunny day.
Charlotte P
This trail is SUPER FLAT, perfect for those who can't decide whether they want to go for a hike or a walk!
Evzen Masopust
Nice trail, I really loved that. Especially the waterfall amazed me, because I haven’t expected it to be there. Wonderful. Met some cows and horses along the way. From both Artashavan and Ohanavan there is bus connection to Yerevan. Definitely worth to hike this one!
Mariia Oskotskaia
I liked this trail so much! Scenic all the way, beautiful monasteries, easy road. I took a taxi to Saghmosavank, started there, and took a bus back to Yerevan from Hovhannavank. I started my way right after the rain, but I didn’t have any difficulty with the road
hiker hiker
Great trail with awesome views, although kinda short. Did it in 3 hours, wish it was a bit longer and I could enjoy the rocks for a couple of hours more. Didn't meet any snakes in July, only some kind curious cows :) Was pleasantly surprised by easily available Yandex at 2pm on Saturday. Thanks to this great website as well! Couldn't have found these trails without you guys. Keep up the good work!


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