Baku- Absheron tour (03N/ 04D)
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Day 1: Arrival and transfer to hotel
Welcome to the capital of Azerbaijan, Baku. Your exciting holiday kicks off as you arrive at the airport. Our professional driver will transfer you to the hotel for check-in. You will have free time in hotel to relax or go to explore around. Overnight in hotel.
Day 2: Baku City Tour
Wake up and start the day with a hearty breakfast buffet. Our driver and guide pick you up for the tour around 10:00 am.
Our tour starts from the highest pick of the city named Highland Park for amazing city panorama and photo stop. The park is located in the centre of Baku. It is one of the most popular places of the local residents and tourists. The most unique side of the park and the reason why it is actually, called the “Highland Park” is its impressive panorama looking over Baku city, Baku bay and Baku Boulevard stretching along the Caspian sea. Furthermore, Azerbaijan Independence Museum, Martyrs’ Lane where lie the victims of Black January of 1990 and those who were killed in Nagorno Karabakh war are also buried in the Highland Park.
Continue out tour to the old city of Baku- Icherisheher. It covers twenty-two hectares of territory and includes hundreds of monuments. This urban complex is an outstanding testament to architecture. In Icherisheher, there are four monuments of world-class value: Icherisheher, the complex of Shirvanshah’s Palace, Maiden Tower, and Muhammed Mosque. Due to the cultural significance and uniqueness, the entire Icherisheher including Shirvanshah’s Palace and Maiden Tower are all inscribed on the World Heritage List.
Continue to Nizami Street, which was the main trade street of Baku for decades. It is now one of the favourite places of tourists and local people for shopping and entertainment activities. Next, pass by the Carpet Museum, a structure built in the shape of a carpet. And now, you are walking along one of the longest boulevards in the world, which runs parallel to Baku’s seafront more than 3,5 kilometers. The boulevard is established on 1909 and now one of the favourite places of people. It traditionally started at Freedom Square continuing west to the Old City and beyond. Since 2012, the Yeni Bulvar (new boulevard) has virtually doubled its length.
Our last stop is “Heydar Aliyev Center”- a building complex designed by Iraqi-British architect Zaha Hadid. The building is very distinctive for its unique architectural design and visual elements. In 2014, the Center won the Design Museum’s Design of the Year Award.
Day 3: Absheron Peninsula and Gobustan tour
Wake up and start the day with a hearty breakfast buffet. Today, we will explore the Absheron Peninsula and Gobustan Petroglyphs. We will start our tour by visiting Yanar Dag. It is one of the most famous and popular tourist places of the “eternal flame” in Azerbaijan. The site is located 25 km to the north from Baku, in Mehemmedi village. A 10m long wall of fire, that never extinguishes, is burning continuously alongside the edge of the hill. It is naturally at its most spectacular at night when tourists and locals alike view the fire from a nearby teahouse.
Now, we continue to other Zoroastrian site of Absheron called Ateshgakh. This fire temple, with a mixture of Indian and Azerbaijani architectural styles. It is a surviving proof of age-old relationship between the two countries. There are still some wall inscriptions in Sanskrit and Gurumukhi. Cells for pilgrims line the wall inside and surround the main altar in the centre of the temple – a quadrangular pavilion with the fire on the altar inside. Historians, archaeologists, and theologians have argued over the construction date of the temple. Arguably, some defend that there was a Zoroastrian temple in Surakhany since the 6th century.
After Ateshgakh, we will continue to Gobustan National Par. It is one of the most attractive and historically important tourism sites of Azerbaijan. Gobustan is located on the south-east of the Great Caucasian Mountains about 60 km far south of Baku. It is a semi-desert region with numerous gullies and ravines. Unsurprisingly, the meaning of Gobustan in local language means “ravine land”. Settled since the Stone Age, the area is one of the main and most ancient museums of rock engravings (petroglyphs) in the world.
Gobustan petroglyphs contain very important elements of ancient lifestyle of stone age humans. Until nowadays, as a result of number of expeditions about 6000 rock pictures have been discovered and listed there. The most ancient petroglyphs identified here are considered belonging to the 10-8th century BC. However, it is assumed that humans populated this area even earlier and Gobustan was one of the cradles of civilizations.
Day 4: Departure
Wake up and start the day with a hearty breakfast buffet. After, check out from the hotel. Unfortunately, it is time for airport transfer now.