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Ski touring legendary Mount Ararat

Tour Code : WIN 02

–    Mount Ararat summit 5.137m
–    Dogubeyazit & Ishak pasha palace
–    Van; pearl of the east & the citadel Kingdom of Urartu  
–    Akdamar Island & the holy cross church

Best Season   
Jan / Feb / Mar / Apr / May / Jun / Jul / Aug / Sep / Oct / Nov / Dec


Duration of the Trip
8 Days / 7 Nights


Difficulty Level
= D/E (Challenging/Demanding)
Ascent to Mount Ararat with tour ski (5 days)


Mt. Ararat Permit
It is necessary for a Mount Ararat climb to apply a Permission (Permit) given by the government.
Therefore it is necessary to confirm your Mount Ararat climb 60 days in advance before the Tour begins and to send us all necessary Personal Details of each Group Member by time to complete all requirements.

Necessary Details we need 60 days in advance:
–           Your full name & surname (as indicated in the passport)
–           Date and place of birth
–           Nationality
–           Passport number
–           Issue & expiry date of passport (please make sure that expiry date is beyond your Travel Dates)


Hotel    :    3 Nights
Camp   :    4 Nights

Day 1 : Van to Dogubeyazit; sightseeing Ishak pasha palace

Meet at the Van airport with Demavend Travels representative and drive to Dogubeyazit; a settlement with a long history. Dogubeyazit lies 15 km southwest of Mount Ararat and 35 km from the Iranian border. The area has had a rich history since it was settled during the times of the first Armenian Kingdom of Urartu. The Area was subsequently conquered by Persians, Romans, Arabs and Byzantines all of whom would have used the plain to rest and recoup during their passages across the mountains. In Dogubeyazit it is possible to visit Ishak Pasha Palace; built on a hill at the side of a mountain. It was the last large monumental structure in the Ottoman Empire from the “Lale Devri” period. It is one of the most distinguished and magnificent examples of the 18th century Ottoman architecture and is very valuable in terms of art history. We spend the Night in Dogubeyazit at the Hotel.
Transfer time: 2/3 h; transfer distance: 180 km (Van – Dogubeyazit)
ON: in Dogubeyazit at the Hotel
Meals: – / – / D

Day 2 : Ascent to Mount Ararat Camp I (Base camp) 2.500/2.700m

After Breakfast we load our luggage and camping equipment on our vehicle and drive via Topcatan village to Eli Village (2.000m), Between 1.900 and 2.000m (according to road conditions) we will start our ascent. Our luggage will be carried by mules and horses which will be arranged in advance. We climb up to our first Camp Side (Base Camp) which we will establish at a high of 2.500m or 2.700m and our cook will arrange the meals for the evening. We spend the Night at the Camp.
Transfer time: approximately 1 h (Hotel Dogubeyazit – starting point / depends on Road Conditions)
ascent: between 1.000m and 1.400m; (4/5 h) (depends on Road, Weather and Snow conditions)
ON: at Mount Ararat base camp 2.500/2.700m
Meals: B / L / D

Day 3 : Acclimatization Day; ascent to Camp II (High camp) 3.700/3.900m & return to Camp I (Base camp) 2.500/2.700m

Today is an acclimatization day up to 3.700 or 3.900m. High altitude is defined as altitudes than 3.000m and AMS (Acute Mountain Sickness) may appear above this level and doesn’t matter if you are fit or not, can happen to anyone anytime. Question is good hydration and not overexerting. So an acclimatization climb is certainly necessary and on Mt Ararat we follow this rule. We ascend up to second camp and even more depending on our limits and weather and ski descend back to camp 1 and prepare ourselves for the next day to move up Camp II.
Ascent/descent: between 1.000m and 1.400m; (4/5 h) (depends on the altitude of base & high camps)
ON: at Mount Ararat base camp 2.500/2.700m
Meals: B / L / D

Day 4 : Ascent to Camp II (High camp) 3.700/3.900m

After breakfast we ascend to the second campsite at an altitude of 3.700m or 3.900m. After reaching the campsite, we set up our tents and we take a rest. In the afternoon, we can make walks on higher altitude and ski down to get acclimatized.
Ascent/descent: between 1.000m and 1.400m; (4/5 h) (depends on the altitude of base & high camps)
ON: at Mount Ararat high camp 3.700/3.900m
Meals: B / L / D

Day 5 : Mount Ararat summit ascent 5.137m & return to Camp I (Base camp) 2.500/2.700m

Very early in the morning we will have breakfast and start our ascent before sunrise. After a very hard ascent, because of the steep slopes, we will reach the Glacier at 4.750m. Depending on the Snow Conditions it can happen that we need to use Crampons. We continue our ascent till we reach the Summit of the Mt. Ararat. If the weather is clear we can see the Mt. Damavand in Iran, the Elbrus in the Caucasus and the Kackar Mountains near the Black Sea. We enjoy the great panoramic view from the Summit and afterwards start descending to the Base Camp.
Ascent: 1.437m; descent: between 2.637m and 2.437 m; (7/8 h) (depends on the altitude of Base Camp)
ON: at Mount Ararat base camp 2.500/2.700m
Meals: B / L / D

Day 6 : Camp I (Base camp) descent back to Dogubeyazit & drive to Van

In the morning we descend to the village of Eli and drive from there down to Dogubeyazit and continue to Van. Archaeological excavations and surveys carried out in the Van province and environs prove that the history of the city itself goes back as far as 5000 B.C. Under the ancient name of Tushpa, Van was the capital of the Urartian kingdom in the 9th century BC. Today Van is more known as “The Pearl of the East” because of the beauty of its surrounding landscapes. We spend the next two Nights in Van at the Hotel.
Descent: between 1.000m and 1.400m; (4/5 h) (depends on Road, Weather and Snow conditions)
Transfer time: 2/3 h; transfer distance: 180 km (Van – Dogubeyazit)
ON: in Van at the Hotel
Meals: B / L / D

Day 7 : Van sightseeing; Van castle (citadel) and Akdamar Island & church

After breakfast  we take time to visit Van Castle (Citadel) and Akdamar Island.  Van Castle (Citadel); was constructed by Urartian king Sardur. It is a massive stone fortification built during the 9th to 7th centuries BC and is the largest example of its kind. It overlooks the ruins of Tushpa, the ancient Urartian capital during the 9th C., which was centred upon the steep sided bluff where the fortress now sits. One of the most remarkable structures around is the rock tomb of Argisti the first, outside which is a long inscription relating the events of his reign.  Akdamar Island & church; we drive to Gevas town and take a Ferryboat to visit Akdamar Island, a small island in Lake Van which is home to a 10th Century Armenian Church, known as the Cathedral Church of the Holy Cross and were the seat of an Armenian Catholics from 1116 to 1895. The unique importance of the Cathedral Church of the Holy Cross comes from the extensive array of bas-relief carving of mostly biblical scenes that adorn its external walls. We spend the Night in Van at the Hotel.
Transfer time: 2/3 h; transfer distance: 180 km (Dogubeyazit – Van)
Ferryboat transfer: 20/25 min. to Akdamar Island / one way
ON: in Van at the Hotel
Meals: B / L / D

Day 8 : Van – Home

Transfer to Van airport where the Trip concludes.
Transfer time: 15 min.; Transfer distance: 10 km (Hotel – Van airport)
Meals: B / – / –

ON = Overnight accommodation / B = Breakfast / L = Lunch / D = Dinner

Price Includes
–    All transfers and transportations with private vehicles to the places mentioned in the Itinerary
      Days 1 & 8: One (one way) arrival/departure transfer from/to Van airport/ Hotel in Dogubeyazit & in Van
–    Demavend Travel English speaking Tour Leader/Mountain Guide (Logistic Guide only / no specialist of Ski)
–    Hotel accommodations, rooms on double/twin share base;
      Half Board (HB) service; Important: HB Dinner Service available until 20:30/21:00 h
–    7 x Breakfast, 6 x Lunch (Lunch Packages & Restaurants where available), 7 x Dinner
–    All necessary Camping Equipment’s (Tents, Mattresses, necessary Kitchen Gears & Dinnerware)
–    Ararat Permit Fees


Price Excludes
–    Professional Ski Guide
–    All International and Domestic Flights
–    Travel insurance
–    Extra Transports and transfers other than stated in the Itinerary
–    All kind of Soft and Alcoholic drinks, Bottled Water, Tea & Coffee
–    Meals other than stated in the Itinerary
–    All kind of personal expenses
–    All kind of Entrance fees for historical and natural sites
–    Day 7: Ferryboat from Gevas to Akdamar Island & church
–    All kind of optional activities
–    Extra Nights
–    Single supplements
–    Single Tents
–    Personal Equipment
–    Tips