Save your winter for Tsaghkadzor
For certain reasons, Alpian resorts are traditional leaders for winter tourism enthusiasts. But here, in the Caucasus, we still have virgin spots of the planet which can offer you the Alpian skyline and add a flavor of unique Caucasian hospitality, organic food and fairy tales, being meanwhile so friendly to your bank account.
Let’s start today with the Armenia options, and then we will guide you through the Georgia’s wonderful nature too. Mountainous resorts of Armenia are attracting tourists because of magnificent nature, mild climate and value for money. Tsaghkadzor, the cosy mountain resort, is one of these places, which warmly hosts guests during the whole year; though it is famous for being a skiing resort. The word “Tsaghkadzor” means “a gorge of flowers.” The town of Tsaghkadzor is surrounded by mountains covered with forests and is located at 1845 meters above sea level.
Tsaghkadzor offers skiing, snowboarding and other winter sports with its famous mix of the cold weather and warm people. This area was once well known during Soviet period, but after collapse of the regime it was forgotten. Today it is high on the agenda of tourism development in Armenia, not least due to being the favorite resort of the former Armenian president. You know what that means right? No tricks so that everything here works as a precise mechanism!
You have all conditions in place to easily find a personal coach in place, rent or buy any equipment and even find beginner skiing tracks next to the fastest professional tracks. The cable-way has been renovated recently and has three levels to offer to skiers.
Regarding the accommodation, this small town offers you a whole range of accommodation options, from fashionable hotels to guesthouses with grandma hosts. Recently a local Marriott added to the hospitality palette of Tsaghkadzor. So you can spend the budget planned for Courchevel or Alps during double longer period of holidays here.
Talking about sightseeing in Tsaghadzor, the historical complex Kecharis which comprises four monasteries, is a must see place. The 11-13th-century monasteries were badly damaged in an earthquake of 1927, today they are fully restored and most of the time are full of visitors. The complex also includes various khatchkars (cross-stones) dating to the 12th-13th centuries!
Frankly speaking you should be ready for a gastronomic terrorism in Tsaghkadzor, as khash (which you may justly consider a week-worth meal) will be just an easy breakfast compared to the lunch with dozen sorts of different barbecues, roast vegetables, fabulous fruits and preserves.
You will hear stories to pass to your grandchildren from old men, whose ancestors were among those who descended from Ararat mountain. And if you take a few minutes to learn some Armenian words, you will be surprised to see how thankful people are for your efforts. Take a notebook, a camera and remember – “Barev” is hello and “Shnorhakalutyun” means thank you in Armenian.
P.S. Tsaghkadzor can be a good leisure time not only in winter, but also host summer family vacations.