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Contents: Tours (1)   

Reports by Charles Winter

All descriptions are in English, unless otherwise noted.

Tours

Armenia
by Charles Winter

Translated from the original French version by Barbara Leonard.

Armenia, do you know it? Is Armenia a people or a religion? We forget about the strong sentimental or familial ties that unite us with this small, distant country (the size of Belgium) in the Caucasus, bordered by Europe and Asia. Who doesn't have, among friends and acquaintances, a good friend who is Armenian? Armenia is not well-known to western travelers, who lack sufficient information to discover this former Soviet republic whose population is 3 500 000. Armenia is a country of mountains, served on a high plateau, bristling with extinguished volcanoes, and circled on all sides by the powerful mountainous systems of Asia minor, Persia, and the Caucasus. It has its economic ``lung'', Erevan, the capital, whereas the rest of the country is a tangle of mountains higher than 3000 meters, notched with deep valleys. Who says ``mountains'' says ``passes'' (obviously), and the small area of the country allows us cross it from top to bottom. The program consists of 10 stages, the first week autonomously (totally by bicycle), and the second, climbing passes but travelling the long distances between them via auto; 14 passes, of which 12 are higher than 2000 meters.

The Monastery of Tatev