Unless you’re crossing the Iranian border, it’s unwise to stop in lacklustre Culfa. Ever- suspicious bureaucrats are liable to get apoplectic if you attempt to visit the windswept site of Ancient Jolfa (Cuğa), 3km northwest. Ancient Jolfa was sacked in 1604 by Persian Shah Abbas who ruthlessly exported its talented Armenian craftsmen to build his glorious new capital at Esfahan. The Armenian quarter of Esfahan is still known as ‘New Jolfa’.
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