My Way Home

Tips on Navigating through Armenia
Tips on Navigating through Armenia
1. Exchange foreign currency to local currency at the airport. (Transactions with foreign currencies aren’t allowed). Alternatively, use your debit card as long as it has a Visa/MasterCard/Electron logo (most do). There are a couple of ATM machines right at the exit from customs. 

2. Airport to republic square public transportation is 200 drams, and  public transportation in Yerevan is 100 drams. 

3. Grab a taxi that has a meter, otherwise they will try to rip you off.
OR install GG taxi or Yandex taxi app before arrival, and link the CC card so that you won't have to deal with cash in taxis. 

4. Don’t pay the taxi drivers more than 1000 drams if the destination is from the airport to the square. However, it’s always nice to leave a tip.

5. Be prepared to hear the biographies of the drivers and incessant questioning pertaining to your personal life. But, they’re also quite informative and share a lot of insight about the place they live.

6. The minimal taxi fare up to 5 km is 600 drams 

7. Don’t be fooled by the people’s bitch face mode; they’re very friendly and helpful. 

8. Almost all pubs and cafes allow smoking inside; very few places run on non-smoking policy.

9. Never tell anyone that it’s your first time visiting otherwise you will be charged twice on everything.

10. Dear Americans, Armenians love you all very much, but you are so loud. Please tone it down.

AirBNB is a good resource, as many people buy and furnish apartments (flats) just to rent them. Or you can use the usual (Kayak,, etc.).

In Shushi, Shoushi Hotel is very homey, located right down the street from the cathedral, and the food is excellent.

CALENDAR OF EVENTS (performances, music).

Also (for more “happening” stuff).


Also do a Google search for blogs.

Note: Google Maps is a surprisingly good resource

-Al Mayass - ME cuisine (they have amazing lahmajun)
-Lahmajun Gaidz 
-OST (Lahmajun place)
-Jano - ME cuisine
-Charentsi 28 - International cuisine
-Mer Gyughe - Our Village
-Anteb - ME cuisine
-Caucasus Tavern - Caucasian cuisine
-Khinkali - Caucasian cuisine (Georgian dumplings; khunkalis)
-Pandok Yerevan - Caucasian cuisine
-Beijing - Chinese cuisine
-Sushitoria - Japanese cuisine
-Diamond Pizza - Italian cuisine
-Tashi Pizza - Local pizza place
-Crumbs - Vegetarian cuisine
-Green Bean Cafe - Vegetarian cuisine
-Lcher - Seafood cuisine
-Dolmama - The granddaddy of them all. High end (for Armenia) cuisine. Nice ambience and good wine list. Food is OK.
-Pizza Toria - Good pizza on Tumanyan St.
-Right past Areni, there are some roadside stands where the Iranian truckers eat. Good, simple food.
-In Kharabakh, on the way to Gandzasar from Stepanakert, there is a roadside restaurant where they make khorovatz with black pig meat. They also have buffalo milk yogurt. Simple but delicious.

-Black Angus
-Pit Stop
-Abu Hagop 

-Dargett Craft Beer (good beer, overpriced food)
-Calumet Ethnic Lounge Bar
-Irish Pub
-Tom Collins (all you can eat fried chicken wings on Tuesdays)
-EL Sky Bar
-Eden Cafe-Pub
-90s club
-Art Cafe Van Gogh

-Wine Republic
-Enoteca EVN (they sometimes have Armenian cuisine demonstrations here;
see the FB group
Grandma’s Kitchen Տատիկի Խոհանոց
-In Vino
-Charents Wine House
-Maran winery is one of the better wineries, with a tasting room
-Pasta & Wine

The rules are particularly important now that there are cameras at nearly every intersection and speed cameras anywhere with a straight road.

1. Flash your high beams when you want the slow driver ahead of you to get out of the way. 

2. Flash your high beams to warn oncoming drivers of police traps behind you.

3. Learn to discriminate between the high-beam flashing of the two former cases. Hint: in the city, four lane highways, and obscured opposite lanes, high beam flashing means the former (get out of the way). 

4. Use your hazard lights for a short series of flashes to thank the person behind you when they yield to you and allow you to cut across.

 5. Your horn is the single most important tool in your arsenal. Use it in short bursts as a warning that you're coming through, intermediate bursts to communicate your impatience at a problem driver, and long bursts to curse out an ass. Short bursts and high beams can also substitute for gratitude when the driver is approaching you or at your side. 

6. Always watch out for pedestrians, dogs, and rubbish on the road. Any pedestrian contact, even outside crosswalks is the driver's fault. 

7. Since every car is required to have 3rd party insurance, be strong during incidents as there is a lot of attempted persuasion when you're not at fault.

8. Approximately one out of 20 drivers will break every rule and seem to be rushing to save their pointy shoes from a house fire. Don't mind them and treat them like the aforementioned roadway rubbish. 

9. Learn the bumpy shortcuts as it'll save you time. 

10. Avoid the city center during the day if you can. 

11. Parking has become tougher to find so learn to walk. 

12. Much to the chagrin of cab drivers, women drivers are more likely to follow the letter of the law and speed limits, which will make most impatient drivers more impatient. They are also less likely to yield to asshole drivers as they expect everyone else to follow the rules of the road. Yet, the driving culture is built around expected infractions and a certain "je ne sais quoi" flexibility of the rules. 

13. Solid white line infractions (հոծ գծի տուգանք) cost you 5000 dram, so don't do it. Just because it's a suggestion in North America, does not mean that's the case here.

14. Break all the rules if you can afford it. 

15. Break all the rules if the rule of law does not apply to you. I'm looking at you Mercedes G class black yashik with the numbers 88OO888. 

Patil Ounjian
Source: FB group

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