Adventures of a Kudablin participant in Armenia

Adventures of a Kudablin participant in Armenia

In the “Cudablin” project, we send completely different people on trips at our expense! Irina Feya visited Armenia: she tried to bake lavash in tonir, admired the views of the majestic mountains and found herself in the center of historical events. More details in her report!

When we started to negotiate with OneTwoTrip about the “Cudablin” project, they naturally asked me which countries I would like to go to. As an experienced traveler, I simply listed all the countries in Europe and neighboring countries that I have not yet been to.

After all, I would like to go around and see the whole world, but here is such a great opportunity.

But I didn’t expect at all that the majority of my subscribers’ votes would be for Yerevan and everyone would ignore other European countries. And you know, I’m very glad that everything turned out this way, otherwise it’s unclear when I would have gotten to this beautiful country – Armenia, which I never really considered when planning my trips.

Adventures of a Kudablin participant in Armenia

We arrived at Zvartnots airport, very beautiful, modern and thoughtful. And we went to the nearest stop, hoping to take an express bus to the center. I don’t particularly react to taxi drivers, who are the same in all countries, who said that buses would not go to the center today, we waited for about twenty minutes and an airport employee suggested that indeed nothing was running, since strikes had started and the entire center was blocked. I didn’t know then that we had arrived in the country at a historical moment.

But this is how we found out that Yandex operates in Armenia. Taxi is at the same level as ours, but the prices here are ten times lower.

In the end, we got to our hotel for 150 rubles. And then we always used only taxis, because they are cheaper than getting around by bus in Moscow.

Our hotel was located in the very center on Avobyan Street, which leads directly to Republic Square, so when we went out for a walk to the heart of the city, we walked with a chanting crowd, not really understanding what was happening.

But everything looked nice and not scary, the crowd consisted of a large number of students and even schoolchildren. The blocked streets actually turned out to be just filled with benches with young people sitting on them. From the balcony of our room we watched as more and more people grew, and the slogans were heard louder.

We did not expect to find ourselves in the center of political events, because walking was really problematic, we even bumped into the police several times, who did not let us pass further, we had to go back and make circles.

Adventures of a Kudablin participant in Armenia

It’s good that my task from OneTwoTrip was not strictly tied to the city and I went to complete it in the village of Garni nearby. And the task was that I had to bake real Armenian lavash.

By the way, I have never eaten such delicious lavash anywhere else. Here it is completely different – always very fresh, soft, fragrant and thin, thin, like a napkin.

I was always interested in how it was possible to bake something like this, even technically I didn’t have much idea how it was done.
It is not for nothing that Armenians treat their national bread with such reverence, born in tonir – a pit up to 1.5 meters deep, where firewood is placed, and later bread is baked on coals or barbecue is prepared.

There is no crumb in Armenian lavash, so it is easily digestible and preserves for a long time. I learned that pita bread can be stored for six months; to do this, it is dried and stored in a dry place. It is enough to sprinkle the pita bread with warm water and wrap it in a clean cloth for a few minutes – and it restores the quality of freshly baked bread.

The dough contains only flour, salt and water, but a starter is used in the form of an ordinary piece of dough from previous baking, placed for a few seconds in a tonir (better known as a tandoor, but in Armenia it is called that). I never understood how they could bake such thin and huge bread without it tearing, until I saw with my own eyes that a special “pillow” is used, where the rolled out dough is placed, and then pressed against the walls of the oven.

Adventures of a Kudablin participant in Armenia

Baking lavash the first time is like sitting down at the piano for the first time and playing Chopin. It’s simply unrealistic, it requires dexterity and skill, so I didn’t even risk injuring myself, it’s very easy to get burned. Lavash is also a whole art, it’s not for nothing that in 2014 Armenian lavash was included in the UNESCO List of Intangible Heritage Sites.

But I will definitely return to this country and learn how to bake lavash, otherwise this time I was too arrogant about it.

Adventures of a Kudablin participant in Armenia

To summarize: thanks to this trip, I learned that Armenia is very tasty, cheap, absolutely everyone speaks Russian, you don’t feel like a stranger here, people are very friendly and hospitable, and the local beauty is breathtaking.

Adventures of a Kudablin participant in Armenia

Adventures of a Kudablin participant in Armenia

I would definitely recommend climbing the Cascade to look at the whole city against the backdrop of majestic mountains, going to Khor Virap at the foot of Ararat, seeing the pagan temple of Garni, the monasteries of Gerard and Noravank, located in the most picturesque places, and going to Lake Sevan. A lot can be done in one day, which is why small countries are beautiful.

Adventures of a Kudablin participant in Armenia

If you have more than 1000 subscribers on one of the social networks, participate in the Kudablin project, and we will send you anywhere on the planet at our expense. Where you will go and what you will do will be decided by your subscribers.

Travel is closer than you think. Apply to Project Kudablin and you might be the next one to go on an adventure!

Adventures of a Kudablin participant in Armenia

Text and photo author: Irina Feya (@miladyfairy)
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