So I'm trying to avoid all women, the sight of them, as far as possible. I am an Orthodox Christian and church is important so Iran, Iraq, Pakistan is out. I'm thinking Yemen, but its dicey over there now. Where can I go where the women are all covered up, in the background, or avoidable ?
Thanks so much.
Hello Jonathan and welcome to Travelblog!
This is a very different topic to most we receive on Travelblog, but you are correct, Yemen is the one place I've visited where women are most covered. Certain parts of Yemen should definitely not be visited, but I suspect Sana'a is going to be okay.
This is my blog on Sana'a: Where Tourists Fear to Tread
Syria is not as strict in this regard, but it has the benefit of some wonderful Orthodox Churches. However, the security situation there is worse than Yemen so I could not suggest any travel to there at present.
Jordan is another great place to visit, but again is not as strict in the sense of Yemen but it is safer than Syria. Great churches can be found in Madaba.
The other option is to head to the Kurdish part of South-Eastern Turkey - some important Christian places there, but I cannot recall many churches. The Kurdish hospitality was wonderful.
The most interesting Orthodox Churches I've seen are in Ethiopia - but you are likely to see women everywhere and certainly not covered.
[Edited: 2012 Nov 28 20:18 - The Travel Camel:11053 - Message removed, please refer to Travelblog's Terms of Service]
Well, I know its a very odd post, but im baffled why folks think it's hateful. I guess i'll just be honest : I was sexually abused in rather horrific ways as a child and occasionally can have severe reactions when I'm too close to women, tho it very much depends on my comfort level and them. It has nothing to do with my religion, I just want to be able to go to church, Catholic or Orthodox.
I do not consider this a hate post - if it was I would have not responded, but removed it instead.
Whilst I'm back Jonathan, have you considered going to Israel and West Bank? Some fantastic churches there, but there are plenty of pilgrims as well. I particularly liked Nazareth. Jerusalem is fascinating, as you can attend many different churches (Ethiopian Orthodox, Coptic, Greek Orthodox, Protestant, Catholic, Anglican) all within a 10 minute walk of each other.
I didn't get a chance, but there are supposedly monasteries that you can visit and stay in Syria and Israel/West Bank. Whilst in the planning stages, have a read of William Dalrymple's From the Holy Mountain
- an excellent insight into the state of Christianity in the Middle East. It will give you a few ideas.