On The Way to Dendropark

Hello world 🙂
It’s been a while that I didn’t share with you some stories about treasures of Armenia. Now it’s time to discover some new places here. Ready? Let’s go!
It was early Sunday morning on May. Sun was up around 5am and didn’t let us sleep more. Also there wasn’t much time to sleep, as we needed to pack up for a trip. It’s supposed to be a light one, no mountains, no trekking this time, just a refreshing journey. But still, needed.
Trip was started at 7:30. The bus was full with young and enthusiastic people. We had more than one destination to check, the way was long, but all the way was full of fun: games, songs, jokes. First stop was at a wonderful place called Saghmosavank, which was located in a village Saghmosavan. This is a unique monastery complex built in 13th century by Prince Vache Vachutyan. It has 3 main buildings in one: Church of Zion (1215), Church of Astvatsatsin (1235) and the book depository (1255), the entrance of which is possible only through the Church of Astvatsatsin.

Saghmosavank, 13th c.
The place and the location were really amazing, in the middle of a green glade, surrounded with poppies swaying from the wind. But the most breathtaking part of this place was the deep gorge curved by Qasakh river, which was just next to the monastery. The giant gorge was like separating the land into 2 parts. On the other side of gorge Ara mountain was well seen with all its beauty. And if we were more lucky, we could also admire with Great Ararat mountain right in front of the gorge.. Unfortunately, not this time.

After some time spent here learning about the monastery, taking pictures and enjoying the view, we continue the trip. We had a short stop in the same Aragatsotn province, near Armenian Alphabet park, where near a small lake you can see monuments of all the letters of Armenian Alphabet, as well as 12th century Armenian scholar Mkhitar Gosh. This place is well seen from the highway and is on the way to Aragats mountain, the highest peak of Armenia! Not very far from here there is a place where everybody must stop for at least some minutes. In the Aparan city, right on the highway, there is a market, called Gntunik, Here you can buy anything that you need, but what is the most important part is that this is also one of the best bakeries of Armenia. You can find any kind of sweets, cakes, cookies, croissants, muffins and bread. Baking a bread, particularly puri, here is like a show, which you must see for sure.

Next destination to stop was Lori fortress (Lori Berd). This is a medieval fortress built in 11th century by David Anhoghin, situated near Lori Berd village. Being surrounded from 3 sides with deep gorges, curved by Dzoraget and Tashir rivers, the fortress was unreachable by enemies. Almost all buildings of fortress were ruined, only some parts of walls were still standing together with ruins of Roman baths and a small church, which was still surviving and illuminated with lights of candles.

Roman baths of Lori Fortress

On one of the side of the gorge there was a medieval bridge standing over the river. We decided to take a break and stay over there for lunch. The grass was wet after rain, taking steps down was a little bit dangerous, as one little mistake and you could directly fall down in a second. But fortunately all was fine. And probably this was the most amazing lunch time spent: fresh air, running river, emotions, fun. But the weather was not really supporting us. It was getting colder, but we still had another point to check. So was time to go up again, the bus was waiting for us on the top of the gorge.

Now it’s time to go to Dendropark, one of the most wonderful spots in this area. This is a huge territory, with natural forests and ornamental trees, small rivers and orangeries, green paths and alleys. It was established by Polish engineer-forester Edmon Leonovich in 1931. There are more than 500 introduced species from all over the world. The air is so fresh that lungs are crazy about this feeling! It was still cold and humid. I don’t even know how much time we spent here walking around, taking each small or hidden path to check every tree, every small flower around. I could stay here forever..

The park was full of people, families with little kids, playing, running or just breathing the healthy air. Near the park there is also a hotel, where you can stay as long as you wish and take all gems of the nature. It’s a perfect place to cut of from the dusty streets, from crowd world and stay alone with yourself.
By the way, admission is free to the park and open to the public.

Well, none of us wanted to leave this paradise but was time to go back home.
What I can say is that  the day was full of different emotions, relaxation, peace. If you have an opportunity, take a chance and come over here, spend some hours alone, sitting under any tree that you like most, listen to the nature, to the sound of water running in river, colorful birds singing, wind swaying the leafs, and yourself. Definitely, this is the harmony. 

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