அகர முதல எழுத்தெல்லாம் ஆதி
பகவன் முதற்றே உலகு
Yes, the above quote is from the famous Tamil Poet, Thiruvalluvar. It basically highlight the importance of first alphabet and compares it with the God.
Why I quoted here? Because, today I have signed up for the #AtoZChallenge. And I start my journey with the first alphabet A. I though it would be opt to begin with this quote!
Since my passion is about travel, I decided to blog about the various places I traveled across the globe.
With His blessings and yours here I am.
“A” in #AtoZChallenge
Armenia, a former Soviet Republic, is a small country situated between Russia and Turkey. Currently, it shares its border with Azerbaijan, Turkey, Iran and Georgia. Armenia, like India has been invaded several times and mostly by Arabs. There are rich histories about these. One of the few countries to witness the deadly genocides. There were more than 1 million Armenians massacred in the Ottoman Empire. Who did this? The Turkish government of the day. Sad.
Usually, I do not talk about procedures on Visa during travelogues. But, the experience I had with this Consulate made me to pen it down here. They really need a appreciation.
The consulate is in Delhi. The procedure for this was little different from other countries I visited. We need to send the scanned copy of Passport to our counter-part in Armenia and that was it.
They prepare the invitation letter, pay some tax and get the Visa from the office in Armenia. Then its transferred to India office. Here you can just go to the consulate, submit a form and fees [Rs. 5150] and you are done.
This was in 2010. But this is much simplified now, just apply it online and in two days you have it.
Generally it may take one or two days in Delhi. I was again fortunate to get it across the desk.
Yes, when I visited the consulate, the security said that visa is not issued now and to come back on next Monday. I was shocked since I did call the guys and went there.
Then luckily the Consulor was coming out and I talked with him directly. He was so kind and gave me his Mobile number to call back by 9PM. And when I called, he asked me to come directly by 10:30PM. Yes, in the night same day.
Surprised, and visited the place at that night. Got the visa immediately.
As far the cost, its one country where you “divide” by Indian rupees to know the value in Indian money. Unlike most places where you “multiply”. Yes, when I visited the place in 2011, 1 Indian rupee is equal to almost 12 drams, now it is little higher than 7 drams. So, not so costly unlike other foreign countries.
During my first visit, I reached Armenia on 8th March 2010. It was almost late evening. After completing my immigration and customs, I came out of Airport. I had a cab for pick-up and hence it was not much trouble to reach hotel.
One thing I noticed all along the way from Airport to city, is a lot of Casinos on the way to Hotel. Later heard that they were all moved out of city and hence all are now in both side of the roads from Airport to city.
I was staying in Golden Tulip which is near the Republic Square. There is also a Moscow Cinemas right next to the hotel. And a Disco bar too right opp to Hotel.
I use to walk around if I get any time, and the first and foremost thing that took my attention was the cars. Ofcourse.
I was astonished to see the variety of cars over there.
Lot of Russian cars are seen all around.
At the same time, we can see the latest Beemers, Merc, VW, Fortuner, Mustang, Porsche, Fortuner, Hummer etc etc.
And I saw lot of Aveo’s & Logan there. All are yellow boards. Yes, taxis.
They have women-special Taxi service. And the color of the vehicle is PINK!
They are mostly Octavia and Fabia. One strange thing is, the drivers are Mens.
Cops have the Toyota Altis.
Most of the trucks are oldies, and the whole scene reminded me of some Russian movie.
Its one place where we would like to shop. Why? Because, its where we divide the money with Indian rupees rather than multiples 🙂
The city is very different when you compare the downtown and the county side.
The downtown has many new architecture and contemporary designs placed on the street. While enjoyed the lux cars and shops in the downtown, I love the scenic country side too.
Republic Square, Yerevan.
One of my friend took me to the Temple of Garni. The moment my friend said this is a pre-christian era architecture, I could not resist the offer and we went to the place.
Temple of Garni
Eat, taste, enjoy
Like our India, there are many places around the world that talk of rich history. I would certainly place Armenia in the top if I do need to list them.
And, I am happy that I will be having my next trip to this Land in few weeks. I am confident that each visit will be with its own sweet memories. This time, it is no different. Let’s see.
My theme for the April 2018 #AtoZChallenge is blogging about the places I have been to. Today I have begun the first blog with A – Armenia. Let me see if I can make it through all alphabets.
Are you participating too? Comment your themes here. Good luck.