Holy Caves and Allergies

Geghard Travel Blog

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Me in a field of poppies

Next on the agenda was the Geghard Monastery. Once again we drove across the rolling hills and green pastures of the Kotayk region with the spectacular views of Mt Ararat.  For not being in modern Armenia it is very visible there.  As we moved further back into the mountainous region we saw a field of poppies and the group demanded we stop to get pictures.  Rob stayed in the mini-bus as until I insisted he come and take a picture of me.  He was beginning to have a full blow allergy attack.  He hasn’t really had one of these since we moved to Europe.

 

As with everyday we were doing the excursion we saw numerous farm animals along the road most were wondering free under the watchful eyes of shepherds, but quite a few were just out there.

Raging rapids
  At one point we passed a trailer and behind it was a really nice swimming pool.  Even in Armenia you can find some white trash values.  Finally reaching Geghard Monastery we were amazed by the rushing river down next to the monastery.  The power of the water and the violent rushing sound was incredible.  I just had to get out in the middle to pose for a picture.

 

What makes Geghard Monastery special is it partially carved out of the adjacent mountain, surrounded by cliffs.  It has also been classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  On the way in Nates bought a braided flower head wreath.  Some of us (Rob) tired it on and posed for photos, my big kid.

Rob, Sun God and King of Fairies
  The church on the main level is ornate with carvings, but so dark we actually had to use the flashes (which I hate to do).  Even though it was quite warm outside inside the caves was cool and crisp.  Gevorg had been telling us that when he was young they would collect “poison ivy” and sell it at the market to be cooked and eaten.  We were skeptical as neither of us thought this was possible (we had both suffered the horrible itchy effects in the past). As we were leaving we saw some stinging nettle plants.  It turns out, that was what Gevorg thought was “poison ivy”.  Mystery solved!  Apparently, stinging nettle is a delicacy in some places and eaten in multiple countries as Anna (from The Netherlands) said they ate soup made form it back home.

 

There were little old ladies selling bread, dried fruits, and other items at the entrance.  Rob was getting hungry so he bought what looked like a giant bagel.  It was a beautiful golden brown and all nice and soft inside.  The taste was sweet and reminded me of a Parker House Roll.  In the mini-bus on the way to lunch we all literally broke bread together. 

cotton_foam says:
interesting place...urging me to include in my already long list of dream destinations :)
Posted on: Nov 22, 2014
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Me in a field of poppies
Me in a field of poppies
Raging rapids
Raging rapids
Rob, Sun God and King of Fairies
Rob, Sun God and King of Fairies
Path of poppoes
Path of poppoes
Wave of poppoies
Wave of poppoies
The group playing in the poppies
The group playing in the poppies
Hurrah for poppies
Hurrah for poppies
Brian Almighty revisited
Brian Almighty revisited
Mt Ararat peak out from behind
Mt Ararat peak out from behind
Livestock on the loose
Livestock on the loose
Raging waters
Raging waters
Me out in the river
Me out in the river
WOW, this water is cold
WOW, this water is cold
Washing the rocks
Washing the rocks
Rough ride down
Rough ride down
Green covered hills
Green covered hills
Nates with a floral wreath
Nates with a floral wreath
Entrance to caves
Entrance to caves
Spire of Geghard Church
Spire of Geghard Church
Green trees and rough rocks
Green trees and rough rocks
GEghard Monastery from a distance
GEghard Monastery from a distance
Buildings carved into the cliffs
Buildings carved into the cliffs
Carved out of the caves
Carved out of the caves
Cross stones carved into the hill
Cross stones carved into the hill
Cross details
Cross details
Entrance to Geghard Church
Entrance to Geghard Church
Doorway into church
Doorway into church
Detail over doorway to church
Detail over doorway to church
Arches in the church at Geghard
Arches in the church at Geghard
Light from above
Light from above
Carving of royal crest
Carving of royal crest
Carving of royal crest in chamber
Carving of royal crest in chamber
Geghard - ceiling
Geghard - ceiling
Geghard - ceiling detail
Geghard - ceiling detail
Nates and me in a chamber at Gegha…
Nates and me in a chamber at Gegh…
Intercate alcoves in Geghard Church
Intercate alcoves in Geghard Church
Niches and doorway
Niches and doorway
High arches
High arches
High alter
High alter
Alter in chapel
Alter in chapel
Detail of ceiling in Geghard Church
Detail of ceiling in Geghard Church
Carved out of the hill
Carved out of the hill
Carved and painted crosses
Carved and painted crosses
In the upper chamber of Geghard
In the upper chamber of Geghard
Cross and script on a column
Cross and script on a column
Column cross
Column cross
Crosses in a niche
Crosses in a niche
Multiple crosses
Multiple crosses
Cross stone
Cross stone
Junction of a dome
Junction of a dome
Small window
Small window
Carving over a cross window at Geg…
Carving over a cross window at Ge…
Entrance to Geghard Church
Entrance to Geghard Church
Gable peak of Geghard Church
Gable peak of Geghard Church
Islamic inspired details
Islamic inspired details
Lattice work over entrance door
Lattice work over entrance door
Spire of Geghard Church
Spire of Geghard Church
Blue skies and fluffy clouds
Blue skies and fluffy clouds
Me on a walkway
Me on a walkway
Stairs in the cliff
Stairs in the cliff
Geghard Church
Geghard Church
View form the courtyard of Geghard…
View form the courtyard of Geghar…
Cross stones carved into the hill
Cross stones carved into the hill
Gevorg and Rob on the bridge
Gevorg and Rob on the bridge
Rinning water, not so deep
Rinning water, not so deep
Me and the rapids
Me and the rapids
Storybook bridge
Storybook bridge
Tour group on the bridge
Tour group on the bridge
Me taking in the beauty
Me taking in the beauty
Lovely hanky tied to a tree
Lovely hanky tied to a tree
Blue blossoms
Blue blossoms
Geghard Monastery
Geghard Monastery
Cloth tied to tree for luck
Cloth tied to tree for luck
Nestled in the hills
Nestled in the hills
Unbelieveable
Unbelieveable
Bread for sale
Bread for sale
Geghard
photo by: delsol67