Mt Ararat Looms over Armenia - Hole In The Donut Cultural Travel

Lush Armenian Countryside with Mt. Ararat as a Backdrop

Lush greenery of the Armenian countryside, with Mt. Ararat on the horizon

There was no escaping the imposing presence of Mt. Ararat as I traveled around Armenia. The mountain was always visible, whether driving through the lush green countryside or walking around the capital city of Yerevan. My first sight of Mt Ararat came at dawn, as my train from Tbilisi, Georgia was nearing Yeravan. Bleary-eyed from an uncomfortable night of clickety-clack wheels on rails, I made my way to the reeking toilet. The wide-open window provided scant relief from the overwhelming smell of stale urine, but the view took my breath away. Beyond the flat farmlands, Greater Mt Ararat and Little Mt Ararat stood as twin sentinels on the horizon.

Christians believe that the eternally snow-capped Mt. Ararat is the final resting place for Noah’s Ark. The dormant volcano is the primary national symbol of Armenia and is considered sacred by Armenians, who are predominantly Christian. The coat of arms of Armenia even depicts Noah’s Ark balanced upon the tip of the mountain. Sadly, Armenians are prohibited from visiting the symbol they most cherish. Mt Ararat is located in neighboring Turkey, just 20 miles south of the border with Armenia. Turkey is a sworn enemy of Armenia and it is not possible to travel between the two countries.

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5 Comments on “Lush Armenian Countryside with Mt. Ararat as a Backdrop

  1. This is the posting I have been waiting for. It is very unfortunate that Armenia was recently attacked by Azerbaijan over the decade-old conflict in Artsakh (Nagorno Karabakh) My Armenian friend is quite distraught about that as she was just trying to start international tourism in Armenia, and I was thinking of doing a visit there. I will provide your blog URL to her. Do you plan more details about Armenia? I would be pleased about that.

  2. Hi, Barbara:
    I think you’ll enjoy this story. When I saw this picture I emailed it to my mother and explained your caption that it was Mount Ararat.
    At age 74 she is still as active as she can; and she teaches children. They were studying the book of Genesis, and the Flood. When she saw your picture, she printed copies and gave them to the small children, who now have a visual image of what Mount Ararat looks like. Your picture enriched their studies. As I’m writing, I begin to worry about copy rights and proper use of images, and so forth, but I thought you would enjoy hearing this. Mi mama vive en Mexico y trabaja con ninos que tienen pocas oportunidades de educacion.

    • Estimado Charlie: No te preocupes. Normalmente, no permito uso de mi trabajo sin permiso, pero en este caso, estoy encantado de ser parte de la educación de los niños. Muchisimas gracias por avisarme.

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