Armenia. Selim Caravansreai

Caravanserai 230

The Selim Caravanserai was built on the Selim pass (2410m) in 1332 and was part of the elaborate network of trade routes on the Silk Road. Its purpose was to provide a resting place for travellers and their animals as they crossed the Selim Mountains with their wares.

The best preserved of all medieval caravanserais in Armenia, it consist of a vaulted entrance and a large hall divided into three sections with low archways. Animals slept in one section with stone food troughs and a pool for water. Weary travellers slept in a separate room.

Openings in the ceiling allow natural sunlight into the chamber in dramatic bright shafts. These openings also let air in and smoke out.

I image after a long and arduous journey into the mountains with your animals, supplies and goods, the Selim Caravanserai would have provided a welcome relief. I wonder though, how restful it would have been as it appears quite small…

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