Armenia day 5 Lake Sevan crayfish (crawfish) lunch, Silk Road Armenia, Sevan Tunnel, Sevan Pass, Semyonovka, Dilijan (Dilidjan), Haghartsin Monastery, Jukhtak Monastery (Jukhtakvank or Jukhtak Vank). Total distance about 300-350 km.
- (Hidden by O) Yerevan, Armenia
- Tsovagyugh, Gegharkunik, near Lake Sevan. Turn around and start mission to find fresh Lake Sevan crayfish (or crawfish, crawdads – Astacus Leptodactylus?) for lunch after reading in a guide book that it was a good idea.
- Turn around again after driving past several fresh fish shops or roadside stands but not sure about any restaurants.
- Turn around again to investigate what might be cafes or restaurants and ask for a Lake Sevan crayfish lunch.
- Turn around again after having stopped at a couple of places, found fresh live crayfish, or a restaurant with food but not cooked crayfish.
- (Hidden by G) Buy fresh crayfish after being pointed towards a cafe that will cook them. About a kilo (or two pounds) of assorted sized fresh crayfish cost me AMD 1,000 (about US$3). If you’re a novice crayfish eater like me, remember that a kilo gives you enough crayfish meat to make just a couple of sandwiches with.
- The Hovek roadside cafe and restaurant, who cooked my fresh crayfish and served coffee for the grand price of AMD 1,500 (about US$4). Mission accomplished. I didn’t check whether the tails were straight or curly – some say that straight tails mean the crayfish was dead before being cooked and shouldn’t be eaten, others say straight tails don’t mean the crayfish was dead or alive. Louisiana State University Agricultural Center website says it’s a myth that straight tails mean the crayfish was dead before cooking. You’d expect them to know since Louisiana has a large number of crayfish and crayfish eaters. Anyway, I know at least some of them were alive when I bought them – the buggers pinched me when I picked them up.
- (Hidden by I) – Sevan tunnel. There are two roads, not obvious on Google maps. The Sevan Pass is the road that goes through Semyonovka, the Sevan tunnel road doesn’t. Turn-off to Semyonovka on the Lake Sevan side of the tunnel is not obvious (I didn’t find it even after driving past more than once, and I think I saw the other end in Semyonovka – it looks like a farm track if it was the one).
- Turn-off to Sevan Pass after going through Sevan tunnel.
- Sevan Pass in Gegharkunik, and Semyonovka in Tavush. Good views from the Sevan Pass road, especially on the Dilijan side but not much else to see at the top or in Semyonovka (no shops, cafes, restaurants, etc).
- (Hidden by N) Dilijan, Tavush.
- Haghartsin Road/H50 and Haghartsin Monastery at the end of it. Scenic forest drive, sealed, good road, lined with pleasant BBQ and picnic areas.
- M-8 to Vanadzor, turn-off (vaguely signposted) to Matosavank and Jukhtakvank Monasteries. Road not on Google Maps, is sealed (sort of) but potholed and appears to have open (!) manholes in several places. Watch out. Monasteries are 30-40 min walk from road, each in different directions.
- Dilijan, Tavush
- Yerevan, Armenia