Coming from a very old country that was the first to adopt Christianity as its religion in the fourth century, Luiza Navasardyan is proud to be Armenian and to share her remarkable culture with those unacquainted with it.
“We have a very rich history which attracts hundreds of tourists every year to Armenia; we have lots of beautiful sight-seeing places, especially for Christianity,” Navasardyan said.
Armenia, located between Western Asia and Eastern Europe, is bordered by Turkey, Azerbaijan and Iran.
Mount Ararat, located in Armenia, is believed to be the mountain where Noah’s ark landed. “According to the myths and legends in Armenia, it is believed that Hayk, a legendary patriarch, was the great-grandson of the biblical Noah,” Navasardyan said. “Mount Ararat is a beautiful sight to behold.”
Although the culture has deep Christian roots, Armenians celebrate a few non-Christian festivals.
The first is associated with the pagan goddess of love, beauty and fertility and dates back to the pagan days of Armenia.
“On that day, people drench each other with water. It is believed that the act of pouring each other water brings good luck to that person’s life,” Navasardyan said.
The eighth of March also signifies “beauty day,” which is a day when all females receive
presents from their fathers, brothers, boyfriends, husband and male friends.
“I love the eighth of March; I get to receive presents and attention on that day,” Navasardyan said.
In Armenia they listen to all kinds of music with entertaining beats that would appeal to anyone.
“My favorite song is “Armenchi‘s Verjapes” which means ‘Finally.’ Finally his girlfriend accepted him. I like the lyrics because it is romantic and makes me happy especially, this Valentine season,” Navasardyan said. “This song would inspire any guy to ask a girl to be his Valentine.”
One popular Armenian dish Navasardyan recommends is Dolma Sarma Tolma which is a mixture of all kinds of vegetables with rice and beef which is then stuffed in tomatoes and boiled.
“The traditional dolma is wrapped in grape leaves and boiled. Try it out, it is yummy and very delicious,” Navasardyan said.
Although they do wear traditional attire, the majority of Armenians dress is western-influenced.
“Today, we dress more like Americans, but for our traditional dress, it is just too beautiful to describe, I’d rather show it to you, for you to understand how beautiful it is,” Navasardyan said.