Last week, I shared the Georgia part of a culinary, cultural, and heritage tour that I will be taking May 27-June 9, to Georgia and Armenia with my 80-year-old mother. This week, I want to highlight what we will experience in Armenia, June 5-9, 2017. This portion of the trip is just $1420!
Our Armenia experiences will include:
*A home visit and lunch with local Molokans (Russian for “Milk drinkers”), a minority Christian sect, exiled by the Russians, who began settling here since the 17th Century. They are famous for their tasty, marinated pickles.
*Touring the village of Odzoun with honey tasting. See how the locals cultivate their orchards or gather harvest. Visit the house of one of the locals to taste the sweetest honey in the region accompanied by Armenian mint tea.
*An overnight in the 1200 m altitude spa and resort town of Dilijan (locally called Armenian Switzerland) in Tavoush region, blanketed by a deep and dense forest, with astonishingly rich vegetation.
*Driving along the ancient Silk Road, from Sevan to Noravank via Selim pass, one of the best preserved Caravanserais in Armenia.
*a meal in cottages resembling the archetypically traditional Armenian houses.
*Exploring a 6100-year-old winery, recently discovered in a cave in Areni, a village famous for its viticulture in this relatively hot and dry part of Armenia.
*Beholding biblical Mount Ararat and Khor Virap Monastery
*Participating in a brandy degustation at the legendary Yerevan Brandy Factory, where they have been producing brandy since 1887, with some of the oldest brandies are still kept in barrels.
*Attending a Duduk performance in Garni temple, the only pagan temple remaining in Armenia since the adoption of Christianity. The Duduk is a double-reed woodwind flute that has been played in Armenia for 3,000 years. In 2005, it was proclaimed by UNESCO as Masterpiece of Intangible Heritage of Humanity.
*Witnessing the baking of Armenian “Lavash” bread in an underground traditional oven called a Tonir.
*Exploring Matenadaran, the Mesrop Mashtots Institute of Ancient Manuscripts, where you can find 18,000 ancient manuscripts in various fields of
study -- the richest and oldest collection, not only in Armenian but also Arabic, Georgian, Persian, and other languages.
*Visiting the Genocide Memorial and Museum in the Tsitsernakaberd Memorial Complex high on a hill in Yerevan. It is dedicated to the memory of the 1.5 million Armenians who perished in the first genocide of the 20th century, at the hands of the Turkish government.
*Learning the process of rug production and viewing rugs dating back to the middle ages at the Megeryan family’s carpet factory.
*Visiting the Cross of Armenian Unity, an NGO founded after independence in 1991, providing humanitarian assistance to orphans. Here participants take part in carpet weaving or preparing traditional Armenian culinary dishes, and they can explore the owner’s winery, where he himself makes wine and keeps it in the big barrels.
Accommodations: We’ll stay in the 4-star Hotel Dilijan Resort 4* (or similar), the 5-Star Hotel Royal Tulip in Yerevan.
All tips for guides, drivers, and restaurants are included. A link to the complete itinerary is here. Can’t wait, Mom!
January 27, 2017