Booking an Airbnb is a bit of a happy dive – you are never quite sure what you will get.
However, after booking a £ 19 wooden lodge in Armenia, I definitely did not expect the stay to come with home-cooked food, a tour of the local area, a place of opera at the dining table and streaming shots of vodka .
The crazy two-bedroom living my friend Jane and I stayed in also featured a very interesting decor, with holes in the walls, a metal spray-painted piece of shoes that didn't act as the bathtub mirror and a trippy image of Armenian musician Sayat Nova upstairs hung one of & # 39; s beds, which gave me nightmares.
Sadie Whielocks of MailOnline Travel checked on a £ 19 Airbnb while cycling in Armenia. The Airbnb was in the small Armenian village of Arzakan and it contains two bedrooms. Above is the bedroom artwork that gave Sadie nightmares
Sadie said a metal spray-painted piece of shoes acted as the bathtub mirror, shown above
After & # 39; Airbnb was looking for somewhere to stay, Sadie said she was immediately attracted to the ad for a & # 39; charming wooden house in Arzakan & # 39 ;, with the exterior of & # 39; e lodge d & # 39; r pretty whimsical
We had cycled just over 25 miles (40 km) from the Armenian capital of Yerevan to the small village of Arzakan and quickly checked Airbnb on our way to find somewhere to stay for the night.
I was immediately drawn to the mention of & # 39; charming wooden house in Arzakan & # 39; with the exterior of & # 39; e lodge there still quite whimsical. When we cycled in Arzakan, we met our Airbnb host, Levon, and followed his car to our accommodation for the night.
We realized soon after we arrived in Armenia that communication is difficult, as most people from the most important cities do not speak English.
Fortunately, Levon had a young neighbor who could translate roughly and the duo directed us to the wooden house in which we would stay.
It was basically an unusual cabin, with an eclectic mix of furniture that turned my head slightly. After dumping our bike packages, Levon suggested that we go to the main house for some tea and coffee. After a long cycle it sounds ideal and we followed it thoroughly.
The Airbnb hosts provided a homely meal. The dining table was lined with a nice spread of Armenian delicacies, with salt of brine, slices of spicy sauce and lavash flatbread
A plate of steamed white fish served as the main dish for the meal
Airbnb hosts have selected a selection of Armenian sweets for tea time (shown above), with walnuts and cherries ripe with syrup, slices of chocolate cream pie and chopped fruit
Levon Eva's wife had ordered a selection of Armenian sweets before tea, with walnuts and cherries ripe with syrup, slices of chocolate cream and chopped fruit.
Jane and I felt a little awkward with the friendliness of our hosts and the lack of a shared language, but we tried the best we could with the help of the translator.
A music channel played immediately on TV and we focused our attention there in moments of silence. Another source of amusement were the children of Levon, with his baby daughter screaming softly and his toddler son excitedly flying around.
Over and over, Levon then offered us a tour of the neighborhood and said he would drive us to the neighboring village of Bjni to see the Church of & # 39; the Holy Mother of God in & # 39; e 11th century, but that extra would cost us 3000 Armenian Dram (just £ 4.95).
Sadie and her friend Jane were refueling at breakfast for a day of cycling
Sadie said the homestay & # 39; unusual, but certainly memorable & # 39; was, with crazy interiors and a friendly host. Below one of the & # 39; s bedrooms
A view of the toilet at the quirky Airbnb (left), and the property features Levon and Eva with their two young children (right)
We took up the offer and talked with him and his translator about some of the local landmarks – including hot springs, an abandoned nightclub and old fortress.
Once we returned – still in our sweaty bike gear – we were brought back to the main house for a family-style dinner.
It seemed thoroughly extravagant and we offered to do our own thing for dinner – we still had bread and peanuts in our offer packages – but Levon determined that we would dine with her.
The dining table was lined with a nice spread of Armenian delicacies, with salt of brine, slices of spicy sauce and lavash flatbread.
A map showing where the small village of Arzakan is located in Armenia
Eva then brought in a plate of steamed white fish while Levon drew our glasses with local wine and vodka.
It all felt pretty bizarre, but the alcohol basically helped get everyone in good spirits and there were multiple & # 39; genatzts & # 39; (the phonetic translation for cheers in Armenian) Then & # 39; t we were partying. It also inspired Eve to serenade us with a spot of opera singing, which was wonderful and very haunting.
After dinner we rolled in our beds for the night. Fortunately, it was a warm night so no cold sip through the thin walls.
The next morning, Eva had made us breakfast, with some more of the delicious syrupy walnuts that served as fuel for the next leg of our cycle ahead.
All in all, our stay was £ 19 at the & # 39; charming wooden house & # 39; quite unusual, but memorable to say the least.
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