Mount Ararat


One of the amazing things about visiting Armenia is that the more you look around, the older the place gets.” Anon. Of all the newly formed nations after the breakup of the USSR, Armenia has the oldest recorded history, dating well beyond Troy, or Alexander the Great, rivalling the Assyrians and Babylonians. Archaeologists are discovering that this country’s history goes back tens of thousands of years to the Stone Age, as proved by the oldest pictograms discovered etched into sides of mountains. Armenian highlands surround Mount Ararat, of Biblical fame, which is actually in Turkey.

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Armenian is a wondrous yet complex language, with its own alphabets despite the fact that it has plagiarised a lot of words from Persian, Arabic, Greek, Latin and Hindu language, apart from the more modern influence of English, Russian and French. Sadly, there is little else to boast about, so emphasis is laid on its hundred plus museums and natural artifacts. Cultural festivals are a regular feature. So is the ongoing low-intensity long term conflict with Azerbaijan, plus a not so friendly relationship with Turkey.

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by ogannes

The country went into recession after the fragmentation of the USSR as it had a large number of industries supporting that erstwhile behemoth communist nation. Its industrial empire was of significant dimensions, bartering textiles, machine tools and other manufactured goods with other republics for raw materials and energy. It has now changed over to small-scale farming, though the agricultural sector is in desperate need for large scale investments and upgrading of its antediluvian technology. The country has neither sufficient food nor is its mineral deposits (copper, gold, bauxite) of much consequence.

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by Seroujo

The country is has called itself a growing democracy, divided into ten provinces, with Yerevan its capital. Mostly mountainous, it has many rivers and gorges and a few forests. The climate is decidedly continental, with hot summers and very cold winters, which gives it an advantage in attracting skiers and snow-sport lovers. Having said that, tourism is not really a flourishing business. The primary religion is Christianity, with over 93% believing in the Apostolic Church. Catholics, Baptists and Presbyterians are also seen.

Armenian food is festive, fruity and savoury. The main course is normally grilled meat, washed down with sweet wines made mainly from pomegranate and Areni grapes. Its airline is now defunct, though two private carriers still operate among the dozen plus airports. Roads are in poor shape, but the railways are excellent. Places of interest can be seen on a daily basis, operating out of Yerevan.

Its currency is the Armenian Dram, with 1.0 US$=380 Drams. Its time is UTC + 4 hours.

Date posted: 29th June, 2018

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