Winter Mountain travel destinations are always high priorities on our travel wish list and we are happy to say that Tsaghkadzor, Armenia is the newest pleasant addition! The trip here was exciting because we found a beautiful and unassuming winter resort town set in a destination with over 6,000 years of recorded history.
Armenia is certainly off the beaten path for many Westerners and it is not the easiest place to arrive nor does it have lots of infrastructure for novice travelers. The main reason is that the primary tourism market is Russian and English is really a secondary language. We were able to arrive to the ski resort town of Tsaghkadzor (located around an hour driving from the Yerevan Airport) by booking a car with a rideshare app which proved handy as the taxi drivers spoke very basic English.
We would recommend this winter sports destination to savvy travelers who can deal with a bit of uncertainty and are able to handle adventure. In terms of what you stand to gain, it is a very worthwhile trip because the value for money here is impressive.
- An hour long taxi ride from the airport costs around $15 USD each way.
- A day of ski rentals and passes will cost around $20USD
- We were able to hire Olympic team professionals for ski coaching at $30 per hour.
- The new Marriott Hotel offers excellent facilities and nice perks for Platinum Rewards members and its just a five minute drive from the slopes.
There are dozens of little hotels and home stays in and around town, but the Marriott by far is the best call. It has a beautiful indoor pool with adjacent wellness facilities. We found the local food and hospitality to be heart warming. Even when there is a lot of meat consumed in local dishes there are good vegetarian options too.
The town itself of Tsaghkadzor is small but is complete with traditional restaurants, squares, a small museum, mini markets and a historic monastery and church complex which has occupied the hill for over a milennium in the world’s most ancient Christian country. There is an excellent wine shop that is newly opened on main street that showcases the country’s 6,000 year old history of wine production.
Everything about the town and winter ski slopes is charming and comparable to its better known winter resort cousins, but at a far greater value. It is an enviable rustic getaway.