ARMENIA – Lake Sevan

ARMENIA – Lake Sevan

Armenia

Lake Sevan is the largest lake in Armenia (and the Caucasus) and one of the largest high altitude lakes in the world. It is located at 1900 meters above sea level, covers an area of940 sq km, is 80 km long and 30 km wide at its widest point. It receives water from 28 rivers and the only river emissary Hrazdan has come; but only 10% of the water that leaves the lake leaves the river. The remaining 90% is subject to evaporation.

It was the scene of many clashes between Armenian and Arab Christians from Turkey. Important for Armenian history was the battle of 859 in which King Ashot managed to repel the Arab invasion.

It is the most important fresh water reservoir for Armenia, therefore especially during the last century works have been made to try to make the most of resources and to produce electricity. Some unfortunate attempts and projects, however, led to an ecological disaster in the 1950s which led to the lake being lowered by almost 20 meters and the power plant was then blocked. Subsequent interventions stabilized in the situation and now waters from other rivers are also flowing into the lake.

I have also been introduced by man to some species of fish that have gone to threaten endemic ones such as the trout of Sevan.

On the banks of the lake there are some monasteries that date back to the Middle Ages. The most famous are Sevanavank, on the western shores of Hayrivank and to the south Noraduz with its Khachkar cemetery, the typical Armenian stone crosses.

Today Sevan is a tourist destination, in fact Armenia has no outlets on the sea and in summer the water temperature (18 ° -22 °) provided bathing. It is only 70 km from the capital Yerevan, therefore a convenient day excursion location.

ARMENIA – The lavash

ARMENIA – The lavash

Armenia

Lavash, the thin Armenian traditional bread has been inscribed by UNESCO in the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. It reflects the soul of the country and of a people who have always kept their traditions alive and intact.

At the table it never fails, served in woven baskets, it is considered the symbol of the family, in fact it also plays a ritual role in weddings, where it is placed on the shoulders of the spouses to bring fertility and prosperity.

Its preparation strengthens family, community and social ties. The process is undertaken by a small group of women and requires a great deal of effort, coordination, experience and special skills. A simple dough made from wheat flour and water is prepared, a pinch of salt and without yeast, is worked and composed into balls. One at a time, the balls are worked into thin sheets with a rolling pin and enlarged making them twirl with their hands, then spread on a special oval cushion which is “slapped” against the wall of a traditional conical clay oven, the tonir, coated with stone or ceramic, excavated in the earth. After thirty seconds the baked bread is extracted from the oven wall.

More than preparing a food, it seems to witness an ancestral ritual, where you can admire the mastery of rapid and decisive movements, the result of an experience acquired day after day, handed down from generation to generation.

Not only women, however, in the preparation phase: men are involved even earlier in the creation of cushions and ovens, with the commitment to transmit their skills to students and apprentices as a necessary step to preserve the vitality of lavash production.

It is generally combined with local cheeses, aromatic herbs such as basil, coriander, parsley and mint. It is better to eat it fresh from the oven, but it can be stored for up to 6 months in dried sheets and stacked on top of each other.

By eating Lavash, the flavor of a never forgotten past is found in its flavor, an essence that has remained intact over the millennia until it reaches today’s tables.

Important news for Magic Roads

Important news for Magic Roads

Armenia Georgia

Part of the Magic Arabia group and the Tourism Connection® portfolio, one of the most well-known and appreciated DMCs by Italian tour operators and travel agencies with offices in Dubai, Oman and Jordan, today it broadens its range, thus covering in a more widespread way, with owned offices, new and emerging destinations along the Silk Road such as Armenia and Georgia.

The services offered by the DMC range from tailor-made individual trips to large incentive groups, to tours with guaranteed departures with a minimum of two participants.

Thanks to the deep knowledge of the planned destinations, an Italian speaking staff acts as a valid consultant for the success of high quality value travel. Last but not least, the privileged relationship with hoteliers and local suppliers guarantees the best value for money (www.magic-roads.com).

Armenia. Armenian writing has been included in the list of intangible cultural heritage.

Armenia. Armenian writing has been included in the list of intangible cultural heritage.

Armenia

The art of Armenian writing and its cultural interconnections constitute a centuries-old art of Armenian letter making, the rich culture of letter decoration and its various uses, as the UNESCO report has shown. Armenian writing is based on the Armenian alphabet created in 405 AD. by Mesrop Mashtots, according to the principle “a letter for a sound”. The element also stands out for its wide range of ornamental scripts, generally classified according to their shapes; knots, birds, animals, mythological or imaginary characters and creatures.

Since their invention, Armenian letters have not only performed their main function of creating written heritage, but have also been used to represent numbers, encrypted languages. Always, the letters are also used in crafts.

The art of Armenian writing has penetrated almost all layers of society, especially popular art. It is practiced throughout the Armenian territory and is an integral part of the cultural identity of the Armenian people. Those who spread this art are artists, carpet weavers, embroiderers, sculptors, linguists, calligraphers, jewelers and others.