I could buy a visa at the border and the price depended on days. 21 days was $8 and 120 days was $41. I just wanted 30 days that I decided to apply for 21 days and extend at the capital. To extend 1 day was around $1 that it was better way for me.
Getting visa, it took the time because I had to exchange money and so on that I became a friend with an immigration worker. When he signed on my visa, I was surprised because his signature was so beautiful and creative, which he wrote his name and his father name and then drew mountains and birds! But the guy on the picture was not the same guy. It was just the picture to celebrate to enter to a new country, Armenia.
Once I got to Armenia, I was stunned. How come suddenly the landscape was changed after the border? There were lots of trees in Georgia, but in Armenia it was like wide field.
Passing a small town which was connected with pipe
It started raining that I wore waterproof clothes.
It was so beautiful to see yellow wet leaves on the road
I arrived in a city before around the dark, but a big hotel closed and I could not find anything. It rained hard then.
I asked a local people there was no any other hotel around the town. He told me there was an expensive hotel 10 km far. I was not sure where I could sleep for a night. Then they let me sleep at the empty room just next to their fruit shop.
At the next day, I was falling in love with beautiful Armenian autumn.
After the uphill, one car stopped and a guy greeted at me. It was the guy who had a beautiful signature. I was glad to see him again that I made a photo with him.
When I looked at the back, I saw there was raining on the mountain which I just passed.
Two pictures which was taken by my drone
I could see there was the road middle of the hill which I had to cycle. Actually I was cycling on mountains almost every day in Armenia.
And it rained quite often. I thought it was rainy season.
When I passed one small city, I could see a nice building. They were selling bread and some sandwich and I was surprised because it was very cheap. Other travelers said Georgia was cheap. But I could not feel really Georgia was cheap. But definitely, Armenia was so cheap. To bake like on the picture was maybe the traditional Armenian way.
I was shouting so many times on a bike because the landscape was just so gorgeous ever that I could not believe how come Armenia was not famous for cycling.
Me which was taken by my drone. Actually I didn’t fly my drone often because I was too tired or lazy to fly it every day. I only drove my drone four or five times a month. It was fun to fly but sometimes it was difficult to check the screen to take better video while controlling drone.
Picture taken by the drone
Armenia gas station was funny because they had a partition wall. I was not sure for a privacy or what.
In the capital, Yerevan, I had really amazing time with other Korean who were cycling from Asia to Europe. They were staying in Armenia for a few days in other hostel. I went to their hostel every night and had fun together. The left was married couple who cycled for honeymoon. The center was Sangyup who cycled from China. The right was Luffy who cycled from china as well and he met Sangyup five months ago and they cycled together.
I left most of my luggage at the hostel and followed them for one day just out of the city. I could make my dream real with them, which made fire and bbq while camping. It was so much fun to hang out together. They liked camping place that they stayed another night. Sangyup fixed my broken bicycle computer’s cable. Actually just it needed to be fired by a lighter. In Yerevan, I had a huge problem that my laptop suddenly didn’t work, so I did format. Then many things didn’t work on the laptop. Sangyup fixed for me that finally I could use my laptop again. He was really good at fixing everything and he cooked really tasty food well. He and other guy decided to make a fish trap with wood and old T-shirt. They told us we would have an amazing fish night. But actually they could catch nothing. Anyway it was really fun to watch how they worked. I had such a nice time with them.
On March 2016, I got a message from Luffy. Sanyup died with the accident during snorkeling in Egypt. I was too sad to say something. I wished to see all of them when I reach to South Korea.
May his soul rest in peace
After coming back to Yerevan, I went to the Armenian Genocide memorial complex (Tsitsernakaberd) with Italian friend whom I met in the hostel. It was said 1.5 million of Armenian were killed by Turkish government during 19 centuries to the beginning of 20 centuries. Turkish government had said it was too exaggerated and not true. I asked a few Turkish people about it whom I met and they told what their government said exactly. It was one of reason why the border was closed between Turkey and Armenia although they were just next to each other.
The girl on the picture was Italian friend. We walked around and found memorial trees which was sent from all around world.
When I was in Yerevan, there was festival for Yerevan’s birthday. Thank to it, I would watch free concert with big screens. Maybe it was the biggest concert(?) in my life. At that day, I could hear the song which sang like “Ye~re~van~ Yerevan~” at everywhere. Suddenly I could remember the song while writing this. I was not sure they changed the lyrics from something to Yerevan or it was original song. There were many songs which included the word of “Yerevan”
It was my first time to listen lots of songs including the name of capital.
Actually it was the song which I kept hearing everywhere. 1:05 there is Ye~re~van~ Yerevan~, my favorite part
I love this song so much. I wish I know what it means. I doubt a little bit that Yerevan could mean something because there were so many songs saying Yerevan. If it is not, maybe they are so proud of their capital.
I found the concert which I saw on youtube. I really liked the song. Yerevan is considered one of the oldest cities in the world that 2797 on the screen at the concert meant that the city has been 2797 years old. Maybe that’s why everybody kept saying Yerevan on the song? Somehow I felt they had some sadness on the history and some song.
Mount Ararat which people could see in Yerevan and the south was in Armenian territory before. But now it is in Turkish territory. To Armenian people, Mount Ararat was not just one of mountains but it was considered a “holy mountain”. It is featured prominently in Armenian literature and art and even it is the principal national symbol of Armenia. Maybe for Armenian, to see the mountain in their land could make feel them sad because they cannot go to their holy mountain.
At the right side of Armenia, there is the country, Azerbaijan and Armenia has still war with them. I heard from Italian friend who went to the northern Armenia that there was war at the inside of north Armenia, not the border, and people were died. It was weird that I didn’t see any news of it. If I didn’t hear from friend who passed there, I would never know it.
I found the video of whole concert, 1 hour and 30 minutes.
I really like most of songs. On 29:28, there was cute small boy singing and on 50:16, there was traditional Armenian dancing music. On 1:25:12, there was fireworks, which was so beautiful.
Their song was something different from the pop. But anyway I really liked it.
Friends whom I hanged out and had fun together while staying at the hostel
It was Armenian beer, but there was some sticker. I saw that they put sticker on all their national drink.
I went to some restaurant chain and I found delicious soup which was similar to Korean soup.
I went to some dancing concert with friends.
Also I went to Opera, but it was so boring that friend and I were sleepy. The opera I watched in Ukraine was amazing. I realized some opera I could not understand could be too boring.
Went market with beautiful weather
On the top of Yerevan, finally I saw Mount Ararat. I don’t remember what I talked, but I remember only feeling of that time. Sometimes feeling is stronger than just words.
Fountain show in the center
Since Yerevan, I started cycling with the guy from Balkan. When I left the capital of Georgia, I met him. We were going different way at that time, so we just exchanged email. And we met again in Yerevan and decided to cycle together because we were going to the same direction.
And this was me
I could keep seeing Mount Ararat
Usually Armenian church looked like this and I had the picture with it.
I could start cycling on amazing mountains. It was just the best scenery ever in the world. I felt like to cycle in Armenia was the same as to cycle in the Andes. I was really bad at cycling at that time. Now I got used cyling on mountains although the speed of cycling was the same.
We saw beautiful valley the day before, but we didn’t have the time to check. At the next morning, we left our luggage in front of the restaurant and cycled around. It was quite tiring that we stopped at the middle of the road, just made some photo, hanged around, and came back to the road.
The lunch after hard uphill with the heat…
Again cycling on so gorgeous mountains
Two pictures taken by the drone
One picture taken by Dslr
I saw the children showing beautiful smiling during passing a small village.
It was just fantastic ever to cycle in Armenia.
The photo when I made 44,000 km (27,500 mi). Sometimes I thought two things. I am still alive and I like this road still.
There was beautiful downhill on the paved straight road after uphill that I made a new record 80 km/h (50 mi/h).
Every road was so beautiful
The lunch at the restaurant which was found by the chance.
There was a cable car which was a bit far from the main road. It was the best cable car ever in my life. It was called Wings of Tatev and it hold the record for Longest non-stop double track cable car. To be on a cable car was like I was sitting on the drone and looking around. I meant I felt like I was flying.
A small village which I saw at the beginning on the cable car.
The scenery was just so fantastic ever that it was better to see than to take the picture.
It was built by Sweden company in 2010 that I could trust.
There was church I could visit once I got off and walked little bit. At the opposite side, I could see amazing view.
Maybe before the cable car built, people would drive there. They told it was possible to take the bicycle. But at the other side, the road was unpaved and bumpy. But actually there was bike route. Maybe if there is people who love to cycle on the mountain, they could try to cycle there.
Morning with fog
There was just so stunning view on the downhill.
After that, there was extremely difficult uphill. But it was foggy and rainy that I could see the down over the mountain. If it was sunny, the view would be crazy beautiful. But anyway I enjoyed cycling with foggy as well. It gave me something different feeling.
I thought it was the most difficult day to cycle in Armenia because of extremely steep hard uphill with rain and fog.
The hard day was finished with Ararat beer.
It was very interesting bread, but tasty was so so to me.
Again another foggy day
At the top of the mountain! I didn’t have waterproof gloves that I used yellow gloves for rain.
On the downhill, it snowed and my hands frozen too badly. I stopped suddenly and put my hands on my back at the inside of my shirt. After it, I could feel something on my fingers and then I started cycling again.
I would not forget how Armenian mountains were beautiful.
Armenia showed me beautiful colors as well for autumn.
The picture taken by the drone. Some local people in Iran helped me to get permission from the government to carry my drone. They didn’t allow me to fly the drone, but only to carry. I had talked to local people having drone in Iran and actually local people can buy and fly without any registration. But I was not a local that it was good to have permission in case.
I flew my drone to enjoy now because I could not do it in Iran. Thanks that it didn’t rain at that moment.
I gave my cycling partner drone that he could take the video of me. It was not my first to pass my drone to someone. I just gave a few friends remote control to make them to have fun. To fly the drone is easy. Only it is difficult to take the good video because it needs skill.
There was brown color river around the border.
There was Iran after the barbed-wire fence. I really loved Armenia so much. People were kind and the most amazing thing was the view of the mountains. If there was people who loved to cycle on the mountain, then that person must go to Armenia and cycle! I felt like to cycle in Armenia was similar to cycle in the Andes.
Now I had to cross the border to go to Iran.
Days in Armenia = Days
Distance of cycling in Armenia = 752.56 km (467.57 mi)
Cities I stayed in Armenia = 13 Cities
Stepanavan, Spitak, Karbi, Yerevan, near Marmarashen, near Yeraskh, near Areni, Vayk, Sisian, Shinuayr, Kapan, Kajaran, Agarak
Expenditure in Armenia = 345 $ ($1=470 Dram)