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Joanna Lumley's Silk Road Adventure - Georgia and Azerbaijan

It's the second week of Joanna Lumley's epic adventure along the ancient Silk Road, stretching across the breadth of Asia.

This weeks episode follows her travelling between the Black Sea and the Caspian sea, starting in the post-Soviet Georgian capital of Tblisi, before heading into the Caucasus Mountains and onward to Azerbaijan and the glittering city of Baku.

If the second part of the Silk Road tour inspires you for your own adventures, we have a tour just for you with our partner, Cox & Kings has an exciting group tour itinerary combining the two destinations of Georgia.

This exciting journey across all three states in the southern Caucasus. This time starting in oil-rich Azerbaijan on the shores of the Caspian Sea, before travelling through Georgia and later the small nation or Armenia, one of the oldest Christian countries in the world.


  • Visit the beautiful Khan Palace in Sheki, Azerbaijan
  • Wine & cognac tasting
  • Enjoy a performance of Armenian spiritual music
  • Masterclass in making arishta, traditional Armenian pasta
  • Stay in 4-star accommodation
  • Small group size - max 24 people

Day 1: Fly to Baku, Azerbaijan

Fly from London (regional connections available) to Baku, via Kiev, with Ukraine International Airlines. Transfer to the Sapphire Hotel (or similar) for 2 nights. (N)

Day 2: Baku • Gobustan • Absheron

Excursion to see ancient rock carvings at Gobustan, a Unesco world heritage site dating back 20,000 years. Continue to Absheron and the Ateshgyakh Fire Worshippers' temple. Return to Baku for a tour of the Old City and some time at leisure. (B)

Day 3: Shemahka • Kish • Sheki

Travel to Shemahka and visit the Yeddi Gumbez mausoleum. Continue to Sheki, stopping en route at the village of Kish to explore the sixth-century Albanian church. Overnight at the Sheki Saray Hotel (or similar). (B, L, D)

Day 4: Sheki • Kvareli • Telavi, Georgia

Morning tour of Sheki, a pretty town surrounded by forested mountains, including the Palace of Sheki Khan. Cross the Georgian border and into the country's main wine region. Visit a vineyard for a late lunch and wine tasting. Continue to Telavi, via the Gremi monastery. Overnight at Chateau Mere. (B, L)

Day 5: Telavi • Sighnaghi • Tbilisi

Morning visit to Telavi market and meet a qvevri master, who will demonstrate how these large earthenware wine-keeping jars are made. Sample some local wine before continuing to the Tsinandali wine estate for lunch. Afternoon tour of hilltop Sighnaghi. Drive to Tbilisi and stay at the Shota@Rustaveli Boutique Hotel (or similar) for 2 nights. (B, L)

Day 6: Tbilisi

Tour of the Georgian capital including the old town, with its beautiful Orthodox churches, mosque, synagogue and sulphur baths. Afternoon at leisure. (B)

Day 7: Gori • Uplistsikhe • Kazbegi

Morning visit to the sixth-century Jvari monastery then continue to Gori, the birthplace of Josef Stalin. Visit the museum, his private train and see the house where he was born. Travel to Kazbegi via the cave city of Uplistsikhe, set on the path of the Silk Road. Overnight at Hotel Porta Caucasia or similar. (B, D

Day 8: Kazbegi • Tbilisi

Take a 3-hour roundtrip walk to the picturesque 14th-century Gergeti Trinity church. Return to Tbilisi for some time at leisure. (B

Day 9: Yerevan, Armenia

Travel over the border to Armenia and continue to Yerevan. En route, visit the Unesco-listed Haghpat monastery. Stay for 5 nights at the Tufenkian Historic Hotel, just off Republic Square. (B)

Day 10: Garni • Geghard

Visit Garni, the only surviving Hellenistic temple in Armenia and enjoy a performance of Armenian spiritual music. Continue to Geghard monastery, dating from the fourth century and carved into the mountainside. Have lunch with a local family and have a go at making traditional lavash bread. Return to Yerevan. (B, L)

Day 11: Ejmiatsin • Zvartnots • Parakar

Visit the Cathedral of Ejmiatsin, founded in 303AD and still the official residence of the Catholic Church in Armenia. Continue to the seventh-century Zvartnots temple. Have lunch in the village of Parakar and take part in a cooking lesson, learning how to make arishta (traditional Armenian pasta) and sweet sudzukh. (B, L)

Day 12: Yerevan

City tour of the Armenian capital, a highlight being the Museum of Ancient Manuscripts. Also visit the Genocide Memorial and the Ararat Cognac Factory for a tour and tasting. Afternoon at leisure. (B)

Day 13: Khor Virap • Noravank • Areni

Drive south to Khor Virap monastery, the site where Gregory the Illuminator, who introduced Christianity to Armenia, was imprisoned. The monastery has stunning views of Mount Ararat. Continue to Noravank monastery, before lunch and wine tasting in Areni. Farewell dinner at a traditional Armenian restaurant in Yerevan. (B, L, D)

Day 14: Fly to London

Early transfer to Yerevan airport and fly to London, via Kiev. (B)

Meal basis

As per itinerary - B: Breakfast

The tour is available from £2095 per person, with departures in May, June, September and October 2019