Over the last two weeks I have done some very touristy things, which were actually great fun and gave me the chance to visit some places that I had wanted to visit, but somehow never did. During the seminar there was a great cultural program to get the participating foreigners more familiar with Armenia and its culture. Apart from me, all the other foreigners were here for the first time and knew little about the country. My personal highlights were visiting the Parajanov-Museum, visiting Garni and Geghard in winter (I had been there three or four times before, but only in summer), and baking lavash (that actually requires some skills!). Some of the other parts of the cultural program included visits to the Matenadaran and the National Museum of History, a visit to Echmiadzin and the ruins of Zvartnots, a visit to Saghmosavank (which was closed unfortunately), a concert of traditional Armenian musical instruments, learning Armenian dances, and eating Armenian food. Apart from this cultural program, we did do some serious work as well. 😉
This is me baking lavash:
I enjoyed the Parajanov-Museum a lot but the visit with the group was very short, too short for me, so I went back with Chris on Sunday. We walked around in our own pace and spent about two hours in the museum. Even if you are not really into the type of art Parajanov made, it is an interesting museum with lots to see. From the museum we walked back to town. On our way back we visited Sourb Hovhannes church in Kond looking out over Proshian Street and the Hrazdan gorge. We also found Sourb Zoravar Church, a small church hidden on a courtyard between Prospekt and Sarian, not far from the Sarian Museum. It seems to be one of the most beloved churches in Yerevan as many people from different ages have told me over time that it is their favorite church in town. It does have a special atmosphere.
Some of these things had been on my things-to-do list for quite a while (notably the Parajanov-Museum and Zoravar Church), but somehow I never took the time for that. I guess it is because I am not a tourist in Yerevan, but it is actually the city I live in. That does make a difference in the way you look at the town.