Country #99 - Armenia

The Sprint Through Yerevan

Today I overslept. It was kind of on purpose but also not really. I was planning on sleeping for four hours, which would have been until 10:30am given my late arrival last night. But I slept about an hour more, which left me with only an hour to see the city when all was said and done. It was unfortunate, because I really wanted to see more of Yerevan, but also necessary because I had no sleep and hadn’t showered in two days. I can’t thank Tufenkian Heritage Hotels for providing such a great room for getting caught up on some much-needed sleep! It was, apparently, a very comfortable bed that was quite the struggle to get up from.

Once I did finally get up there was lots of music that I could hear right outside of my window. It turns out that Tufenkian Heritage Hotels was located right next door to Vernissage, a big open-air market set up. It was a nice first stop on what would be a whirlwind tour of the city. I stopped by the front desk to drop off my luggage where I enjoyed talking with the staff for a bit. They were great! One of the best parts about Tufenkian Heritage Hotels was that I was in a really great location in the Yerevan that would allow me to see as much as possible in about an hour.

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From Vernissage I walked to Republic Square. It’s one of the main areas of the city and when it isn’t freezing outside is home to a really cool fountain show! From what I read it sounded like a smaller version of the fountains in Dubai, so I’m sad to have missed it. I took lots of pictures in Republic Square before heading to my next destination: Charles Aznavour Square. It was another nice square though not as large but was also very busy.

From there I headed to Freedom Square, which is in front of the Opera House and has large statues out front. At this point, I was almost up on time and had to head back to the hotel. I walked back along Northern Avenue which was filled with people and seemed to be the main shopping street. I also stopped to read a bit about the Armenian Genocide. My biggest regret in Yerevan was not having enough time to visit the Armenian Genocide Museum and memorial area. It was interesting to learn a little just by what I was able to read in town, and I definitely recommend that you read more about it on your own as I did. I had heard of it before but had no idea just how large in size or scope that it was.

When I arrived back at the hotel I had a few minutes to spare and walked back through the Vernissage market before calling a taxi and heading back to the airport. I encountered a lot of people who spoke English well but my taxi driver didn’t even understand airport so I think that was a first for me. I had to show him on my phone after my failed attempts to act out an airplane taking off.

I do wish that I had had more time in Armenia, but once again it all came down do flight scheduling and timing. I would love to spend more time exploring the country in the future as well as a few others in the region that I had to rush through, so hopefully, at some point, I can make it back!

The airport had a really nice lounge where I ate lunch and was able to look out and see my gate so I knew exactly when to board. My flight was to Kiev, Ukraine, and from there I would have a two-hour layover before flying to Stockholm, Sweden. I slept on the first flight, ate chicken in a lounge in Kiev for dinner, and then worked on blog posts on the second flight. The second flight thankfully didn’t feel too long, and before I knew it I was landing in Stockholm. I took the Arlanda Express train from the airport to the city, and then took the metro (called the T) from Stockholm Central Station to my hotel, Rival Hotel.

Rival Hotel is in a great area called Mariatorget. I was there in about five minutes by metro, and then a two-minute walk from the metro station. My room was absolutely fantastic! It had a great balcony (though it was a bit too cold to enjoy given that it was snowing) and was all around just so unique while being luxurious as well. I really liked the cool light fixture that gave the room a lot of character. There was also a DVD and CD collection in the room to enjoy, a sound system that worked throughout the room and the bathroom, and an amazing shower and tub. Thank you so much to Rival Hotel for sponsoring this night of my trip. I look forward to getting a great night sleep before having a few hours to explore Stockholm tomorrow!

99 countries down, 96 to go.

For more information on Armenia click here to read my guide.

To learn more about Tufenkian Heritage Hotels click here.

To learn more about Rival Hotel click here.