High on a Hill

Gosh Travel Blog

 › entry 3 of 17 › view all entries
Country side in the Kotayk region

This morning we had a reason to get up and get going, a tour to see the Lori region around Dilijan with barbecue on the river, and a stop at Lake Sevan on the way back.  We were up and ready to leave at 9:00.  We met our guide, Gevorg, was waiting for us with the driver.  We jumped in the mini-bus and were off. 

 

The day was just perfect!!!  The sky was clear and bright blue with the sun shining brightly.  We could literally see for miles.  As we made our way out of Yerevan, Gevorg the guide was telling us little stores and jokes.

Goshavank
  It was very entertaining.  As we got further away from the city Mt Ararat came into view was breathtaking. I was in awe as this is one sight that I have always wanted to see and having it before me was almost too much. It is larger than life and there is so much history that has happened on and around it. I could just feel its energy.  Gevorg told us we were lucky because the Turkish have a machine that captures clouds and puts them around the mountain.  Today was Saturday; they weren’t working, so it was clear. Seeing peaks rise high into the sky with nothing else around them is wondrous.  Even with the day being so clear it still had a slight haze to it. 

 

We drove through the Kotayk region.  It is an area of sweeping hills with green grass and few trees.  One thing that is very clear is that the roads are better than in Georgia.

Through the roof at Goshavank
  There are a few road signs, but not very good ones.  They point in a direction, but do not give a distance.  As we drove through Rob noticed many building and houses that were started but then it looked like they stopped.  When we asked about this Gevorg told us that the Armenian is a place where fortunes change quickly (one day you are up and the next down).  People start a house and then they are down so it is still theirs, but they can not afford to finish it.

 

Driving past Lake Sevan we saw people selling fish a long the side of the road.  There were stands in old metal buildings.  Because the fish population has declined so much it is illegal to catch and sell the fish in Yerevan.  The authorities were stopping people taking the fish into Yerevan so the people of the Sevan area found a way around it.

Capital detail in Goshavank
  For a while, they arrange a funeral procession because those cars would not be stopped and searched.  After a few days of funerals the authorities realized that a lot of people were dieing in Sevan and being taken to Yerevan.  They stopped a procession and discovered the cars were full of fish, which stopped that.  The people of Sevan have found a way to get the fish to Yerevan, but the authorities haven’t figured out how yet.

 

We passed through a 5 kilometer tunnel and when we came out it was like a different place.  The geography had changed from the rolling plain hills to a heavily forested mountainous area.  They call it the Switzerland of Armenia.  Rob said it reminded him of where he grew up in the Smokey Mountains.

Strolling in Dilijan
 Roads wound us up and down the lush green mountains to Dilijan.  During the Soviet era this was a resort town for artist and engineers.  The only thing there is a forest.  We had to stop in the town of Dilijan to purchase meat for the barbecue later.  This is supposed to be the best meat around because the people let the pig go and roam the woods wild to forage.  Unfortunately, the places to buy it on the way up didn’t have any. 

 

We continued up more rural roads to the Goshavank   It is located on a hill with dramatic views of the surrounding area.  Armenian churches are fairly plain, any details are carved into the stones.  Because paper was too easy to loose or destroy they carved the really important things into the walls of the church.

Roof planter at Goshavank? Shoud that be there?
  They also carved many crosses.  I have never seen so many different crosses in one place……quite unique. They could represent money collected for a cause, the size of the congregation, and as a protection for the church.  This particular church was had an outer room for people who are not baptized while the main room with the alter is for the baptized people.  Armenian churches are built in the shape of a cross with a central spire. One of the ruined buildings that had been used as a classroom was build of stones from a mid-evil fortress.  The library which was said to have had 15,000 items was still black from where they were burned centuries ago.  We wondered around and chatted about the area and the monastery.

Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!
Country side in the Kotayk region
Country side in the Kotayk region
Goshavank
Goshavank
Through the roof at Goshavank
Through the roof at Goshavank
Capital detail in Goshavank
Capital detail in Goshavank
Strolling in Dilijan
Strolling in Dilijan
Roof planter at Goshavank? Shoud t…
Roof planter at Goshavank? Shoud …
Didnt we see these guys in Georgi…
Didn't we see these guys in Georg…
Old men hanging out in Dilijan
Old men hanging out in Dilijan
Lori Region mountains
Lori Region mountains
Shades of green in the Lori Region
Shades of green in the Lori Region
Cross stone at at Goshavank
Cross stone at at Goshavank
Cross on the door of at Goshavank
Cross on the door of at Goshavank
Interior of dome at at Goshavank
Interior of dome at at Goshavank
Model of at Goshavank
Model of at Goshavank
Candles in the dark
Candles in the dark
Light shining down in the central …
Light shining down in the central…
Arcades at at Goshavank
Arcades at at Goshavank
Ceiling of a chapel at at Goshavank
Ceiling of a chapel at at Goshavank
Movable column in at Goshavank use…
Movable column in at Goshavank us…
Crosses carved in a column at at G…
Crosses carved in a column at at …
Arch details
Arch details
Embrodered details of a cross st…
"Embrodered" details of a cross s…
Embrodered cross stone
"Embrodered" cross stone
Cross detail of the embrodered c…
Cross detail of the "embrodered" …
Leaf detail on embrodered cross …
Leaf detail on "embrodered" cross…
Intericate carving at at Goshavank
Intericate carving at at Goshavank
Heavy design carving at at Goshava…
Heavy design carving at at Goshav…
High alter at at Goshavank
High alter at at Goshavank
Curves and points
Curves and points
Smokey recess
Smokey recess
Islamic influence
Islamic influence
Flowers in the ceiling
Flowers in the ceiling
Goshavank from below
Goshavank from below
Old passage way at at Goshavank
Old passage way at at Goshavank
Cross stone set into the wall at G…
Cross stone set into the wall at …
Entrance to Goshavank
Entrance to Goshavank
Small cross stone
Small cross stone
Detailed corner of front entrance
Detailed corner of front entrance
Purple posey
Purple posey
Green grass everywhere
Green grass everywhere
Rob and me at Goshavank
Rob and me at Goshavank
Pieces of cloth tied on a church f…
Pieces of cloth tied on a church …
Goshavank
Goshavank
Chapel above Goshavank
Chapel above Goshavank
Important scripts were carved into…
Important scripts were carved int…
Capital details at Goshavank
Capital details at Goshavank
Flower left for offering
Flower left for offering
Horse onthe hill at Goshavank
Horse onthe hill at Goshavank
House at Goshavank
House at Goshavank
Brian enjoying Goshavank
Brian enjoying Goshavank
Gosh
photo by: delsol67