Yerevan has nice parks and some of them are really interesting for kids and others are not so friendly. Since we decided to spend the summer here this year, we tested most of the popular ones. In this post, I will present my kids’ most preferred green(or not so) areas of Yerevan and one in Ashtarak town.
The process of selection:
After going regularly to most of these places, I sat with my kids today and asked them to rate which one they liked and why? Opinions were different, so you will see at the end of each park the ratings provided by each – (A for 11 yrs old Amassia, V for 9 year old Varanta and Vk for 6 year old Vayk)
Based on their suggestions we formed a chart for parks in our area, here it is:
Amassia, Varanta and Vayk’s chart for parks and playgrounds:
|(photo from their page)|
Pascal and Diodato coffee shop in Ashtarak: this place was on the top of the list for my kids. Although it is a little bit far from the city center and situated in Ashtarak City (approximately 30 min from Yerevan), but it’s really worth going there regularly. The coffee shop owned by 2 Armenian-Lebanese families offers delicious food, coffee, free wifi and a great play area with supervision. The big trampoline is a favorite and my kids play there for hours without any complaints. The toilets are very clean and accessible. The coffee shop is open air and situated near the Karmravor church. It also has a small chocolate and souvenir shop beside it and is open approximately till 11pm (depending on the guests). When you go there, try the Zaatar manaqish, delicious! And most importantly the service is sooo friendly!
Rating: A:9, V:10, Vk:10
|Pascal and Diodato playground (photo from their page)|
Tumanyan Park (Tumoyi Park): second on the list of my kids’ favorites; wide space, beautiful view and nice playground. The best thing about this place is that you can sit on the grass and have a picnic. The problem is that I couldn’t find any public toilets nearby, maybe restaurants or cafes near the park?
Rating: A: 9, V:8, Vk: 8.5
Poplovok Park: A nice area with a small playground, ceramic stand and affordable cafes. It has also a water area where kids can ride small boats. I personally love this park because of the trees and old colorful benches and diverse activities and jazz music. My kids love to spend time there doing different activities and like the freshly baked khachapuris ordered at the cafe near the water. Amassia and Varanta find the lady in charge of the ceramics very friendly and nice. Rating: A: 5, V: 5.5, Vk: 10
Children’s railway – Mankakan Yerkadughi: 3rd best on our list: it still has the old train station and nice railway for kids with a 5 -10 min ride. Also it has a café, vendors, and a entertainment park. The best way to get there, is to take the colorful minibus ride on Mashdots avenue near Malibu Café; it will take you directly to this place passing through a small tunnel.
Rating: A:8, V:9.5, Vk: 10
Lover’s Park/siraharneri ayqi – on Baghramyan street: nicely designed park with the Achajour café in the middle offering delicious sandwiches and deserts. Varanta loves the chocolate crepes there and Vayk the éclairs. The place is not very suitable for very young kids, no playgrounds just a small area with sand where children could play. They also have a ceramic –painting stand for children. They have WiFi and a small area to sit on the grass but too many rules so you can get stressed a little if you have very active children. Rating: A: 7, V:5, Vk: 1
Santa Fe cafe playground: This is a café near Tamanyan statue on the Cascade and has a large area for children with good structures; slides, climbers, playhouse…and sand, lots of sand. It is also situated in the middle of the city and the best area to have your meetings with adults while your kids play. They also have a ceramic-painting stand and a clean toilet. The only problem that it gets crowded easily and you better go there in the morning. Rating: A: 7, V: 8.5, V: 7.5
|Tumanyan park playground|
Cascade: Nice area for strollers, bicycles, scooters and roller blades. We often go there on evenings to sit in one of the cafes while the kids play. But Varanta calls it the “chi kareli” park (too many forbidden things and rules) because the security guards over-exaggerate and you can often hear “chi kareli” (not possible to do this) for example you are not allowed to put your feet on the park benches or lie down, you can not sit on the grass, you cannot touch the sculptures, you cannot draw with chalks on the floor…So you need to be very patient with them. Rating: A: 4, V: 3.5, Vk: 10
|father and daughter semushka time|
This is all for now, will keep you posted once we test other parks!