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Nagorno-Karabakh: A War Zone worth Visiting?
It's not so often that one hears about travel to Nagorno-Karabakh. After all, this was hell on earth during the 1990s when regional conflict ripped it apart as Armenia and Azerbaijan fought for control of this parcel of land--a predominantly Armenian enclave located in Azerbaijan.
I'd like to say that everything has been resolved and that peace has settled in the disputed region, but this is simply not true. Armenia technically won the war, but there are constant rumblings from neighboring Azerbaijan that the issue is far from dead.
Currently, there is peace in Nagorno-Karabakh. Is this a temporary peace between wars? Who knows? But if you want to visit, now would be a good time.
Yasha Levine, writing for The Exile did so last summer and sheds some interesting insights on the conflict and the present mindset dominating the region. Most importantly, he also reveals a stunning landscape that I had always envisioned as extraordinarily desolate. I'll leave you with a nice quote describing what he came across and if you get out of it what I got out of it, Nagorno-Karabakh just might be bumped up your list of future travel plans.
"Nagorno-Karabakh was worth fighting for. The place is like a condensed version of the best scenery of Northern California and the Sierra Nevadas put together: 6,000 ft mountains, rolling golden-sunburned pastures, sandstone hills, steep limestone cliffs, and mountain streams."