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Asia » Armenia » East » Sevan June 25th 2018

Lovely day of driving through beautiful colourful landscape and stopping at interesting sights. First stop, at the top of a high winding pass was a Caravansary from the 13th century. Very well preserved and not renovated, had a feeling f old-world and long history. What a route though high up on this mountain pass in bad weather with camels laden with wares. Coming down from the pass there is the huge Lake Sevan, it's the largest lake in the Caucasus mountains and sits at an elevation of 1,900m. The first stop was Noratus cemetery which has hundreds of the local intricately carved memorial stones (khachkar), some of which date from ancient times. Bumped into a British/Polish couple here that we have now met in all 3 countries, including staying at the same guest house in Sighnaghi ... read more
Scenery en-route
Noratus cemetery
inside Hayravanak monastery

Asia » Armenia » East » Sevan August 9th 2014

W sobotę rano wyruszyliśmy na podbój reszty kraju. Punktem pierwszym było jezioro Sevan - jedyna większa woda w Armenii, źródło narodowej dumy, weekendowa destynacja, generator korków. Genialni inżynierowie sowieccy mieli pomysł, zeby liczące 1416 km kwadratowych powierzchni jezioro w znacznej mierze osuszyć, na brzegach posadzić drzewa owocowe i jednocześnie zwiększyć - w zmniejszonym akwenie - produkcję ryb. Szykowała sie katastrofa ekologiczna na miarę Morza Aralskiego, które praktycznie przestało istnieć. Tu jednak jakimś cudem - po śmierci Stalina i z braku środków - udało sie projekt przerwać po obniżeniu poziomu wody o 20 metrów. Teraz trwają prace, żeby wody znów było więcej. W wyniku tych zabiegów, Monastyr Savanavank, ktory kiedyś był na wyspie, teraz leży na półwyspie, malowniczo wcinając sie w jezioro. U jego podnóża udało si... read more
Hayravank.
Kartoszki na Versace
Cmentarzysko Noratus.

Asia » Armenia » East » Sevan January 25th 2014

Hello, and welcome to Tsaghkadzor....yes, you heard it Tsaghkadzor, and if that proves too enigmatic, then feel free to try its alternative name Tsakhkadzor. Well, as ski resorts go, they surely don't come much more shrouded in mystery than this gem tucked away in rural Armenia, but scratch the surface, and the charms of this little-known-to-the-outside-world resort town might hopefully reveal its teeth in appealing ways. Roughly a 50-minute ride from the Armenian capital city of Yerevan, Tsaghkadzor is Armenia's only developed ski resort, and an enclave of hotels to represent most rungs of the luxury scale, sewn together with a few bits and pieces which make up the urban fabric. The town's man-made centrepiece is the appealing allure of Kechar... read more
Beautiful church (Tsaghkadzor; Armenia)
The piste (Tsaghkadzor; Armenia)
A wintry display (Tsaghkadzor; Armenia)

Asia » Armenia » East » Sevan July 5th 2013

Armenia - is one of the few countries where is still possible to see a truly unique historical monuments of world-class in the privacy and quiet. Because only in such way - being one-on-one with the history, you can feel her mysterious breath. This is a country of mysteries and legends, clean air and clear tinkling streams. But also, Armenia - is an open air museum. This is difficult not to agree with such statement, because in Armenia there are architectural and historical monuments of different eras, from primitive society to modern era. ... read more

Asia » Armenia » East September 26th 2012

Our last full day in Artsakh. We had a slow start which probably wasn't a good idea in retrospect as one of our destinations was a very long way away and on very difficult roads. While Saro got gas for the car, we visited the iconic Karabagh statues - Tatik-Papik. We then went to buy a SIM card which involved passports and a lot of red tape. We then visited the museum about the fallen fighters in the war. We are now in possession of a book which weighs a ton which was given to Rod for our mother, by the woman who founded the museum and wrote the book. After a little stroll we had coffee and then back to the market for Jingalov Hats and a fried potato bread thing plus fruit for our ... read more

Asia » Armenia » East September 25th 2012

We had a big day ahead of us with three different places to visit. But first we had to go to the Foreign ministry to sort out our visas, then we were off to the market to get some lunch as there wouldn't be anywhere to eat in the area where we were heading. A speciality of the area is Jingalov Hats, a flat bread cooked with seven herbs - one of which is compulsory - no idea which one. We also bought tomatoes, cucumber and fruit. Perfect. Saro also bought himself a head torch for the cave that we would be visiting later. The roads in Karabakh are pretty good. Lots of money has been donated by the Armenian diaspora who are living all over the world. The All Hayastan fund have also donated a ... read more

Asia » Armenia » East September 24th 2012

Another leisurely start with the usual breakfast of bread, sour cream, apricot preserve, cheese and boiled egg. In addition we had cake which we decided to take to have with our first coffee of the day. The Mirhav Hotel is tastefully decorated with comfortable rooms with friendly staff. Shame we were there for only one night. We started by going to see Goris old town which was a series of caves just on the edge of the new town. Saro drove us around the sights of Goris before heading off to Khonderesk - the cave village. I went there on my last visit but Rod hadn't been there before. The road to Khonderesk is pretty bumpy - no change there. What is new is a suspension bridge which crosses the gorge and takes visitors straight to ... read more
The Mirhav hotel
Old Goris
Khndoresk

Asia » Armenia » East » Ijevan September 22nd 2012

We had a pretty good nights sleep but I woke early and with the prospect of breakfast at 9.30am - talk about laid back - I had a wander around the site and then back to bed as the sun hadn't reached the gorge and it was chilly outside. Breakfast was served, prepared by Saro again, we had lavash, cheese, sour cream and jam as well as a tomato omelette. It tasted the same as the one at Haghpat but was more solid but a completely different texture from the ones we have at home. Saro insisted on washing up - apparently this is very unusual for Armenian men. I was wondering how many people might make it down to Lastiver for the day. We had chatted to someone from Yerevan the day before who had ... read more
The tunnel to caves
Marina and Saro
The flags of Armenia and Karabagh

Asia » Armenia » East » Ijevan September 21st 2012

An early start this morning - 8.30am. A change of battery and we were off to Lastiver with a quick stop at Ijevan to shop at the market. Lavash, eggs, cheese, tomatoes, cucumber and aubergine with cheese and yogurt. Quick stop to photograph Mother Armenia and then a steep climb up another twisting, rough road with a sheer drop on one side. I should be used to this by now. The road ends at a horse-riding school which looks a bit incongruous on the hillside. Once the walking boots were on, we set off down to the gorge. Saro had to wait for is friend Hovo who was going to take the jeep and put it in his garage. The path down to the river is pretty good apart from one bit where the path is ... read more
Watermelon car
Ijevan market
Path t Lastiver

Asia » Armenia » East » Ijevan September 20th 2012

Another late start - breakfast at 9am. The breakfast was similar to previous days, instead of conserve we had a really thick tasty honey. We had ordered a tomato omelette which was actually more like a soup with more tomato than egg - very unusual. Saro was still having battery trouble but managed to jump start the jeep again. He ordered a battery from Yerevan that is making its way to Ijevan by taxi, together with his wife. Our first visit was to Akhtala further down the gorge on the way towards the Georgian border. It is a very large cathedral - not the most attractive on the outside but amazing frescos on the inside. They are raising money to renovate the dome. There are secret passages in the church - Saro kept appearing at various ... read more




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