Baku by night
Favorite thing: Baku is definitely well worth a walk at night when the town is beautifully illuminated. On warm summer nights locals seem to stroll along the Baku Boulevard, which is the wide promenade on the Caspian Sea.
From here the illuminated Crystal Hall, the Flag Pole and especially the changing light scenes of the Flame Towers can be seen.
Apart from that many buildings in and around the old town (Icheri Sheher) are lighted up, so that it has a special atmosphere at night.
I also noticed that especially underpasses are brightly lit in darkness, so that I felt always absolutely safe at night.
- Budget Travel
Highland Park viewing terrace
Favorite thing: The Highland Park (Dagüstü Park) was laid out in the 1940's; at that time it was named Kirov Park.
The latest redevelopment dates back to 2012, when a large marble style viewing terrace was installed at the edge of the park.
From here spectacular views of the city centre and the bay on the Caspian Sea can be enjoyed.
The Highland Park can be found on a small hill close to the Martyrs' Lane and the Flame Towers. The easiest way to get here is to use the funicular, which terminates just near the entrance to the Martyr's Lane.
- Budget Travel
Favorite thing: The wide pedestrianised promenade along the Caspian Sea is called Baku Boulevard. Its construction started in 1909 near the Maiden Tower and at that time it had a length of not more than 500 metres.
In the 1960's and 1970's the boulevard was extended to a length of 3,5 kilometres. At present it is approximately 6 km long and leads from beyond the Crystal Hall in the south to the Sea Port in the north.
It is lined with uncountable benches, several statues, a new ferris wheel, a shopping centre, a yacht club and many other amusements.
To protect the special character of the boulevard, president Heydar Aliyev declared it a National Park in 1998.
- Budget Travel
Old town (Icheri Sheher)
Favorite thing: The history of Baku's old town (Icheri Sheher) dates back to at least the 12th century, some sources even state the 7th century. In 2000 it was the first Azerbaijani site, which was awarded UNESCO world heritage.
The whole old town is surrounded by a fortification system consisting of towers, gates and walls, which were even strengthened after the Russian conquest at the beginning of the 19th century.
Among many other buildings the old town is home to the nedieval Palace of the Shirvanshahs, the Maiden Tower, several mosques, bathhouses and caravanserais.
The old town (Icheri Sheher) is Baku's most touristy district. It is situated in the centre of the city near the Caspain Sea. The nearest metro station is "Icheri Sheher".
- Budget Travel
Try the Sturgeon
Favorite thing: In Azerbaijan besides some of the best caviar in the world, you will be able to taste the sturgeon itself (osetr). In fact Many second courses are prepared of fish. Sturgeon shashlik, kutum a la Azerbaijan, kuku of kutum, balyg chygyrtma( Balik Cigirtma), stuffed fish, boiled, fried and stew fish, fish-pilaff, starred sturgeon pilaff, balyg mutyanjan and sturgeon fillet with pomegranate sauce (Narsharab) are the most popular fish dishes. But not all fish is sturgeon, and the Caspian sea also provides herring, salmon and the more rare pike perch.
Favorite thing: I visited monument of Azeri artists that some of themes were from Iran (like Shahriar) .in there likes some places you can see "Aliev's" statue. I think Azeries like most of eastern peoples are characters adore!
Fondest memory: night in "Moaziz "resturant with folk live music,swimming in Caspian sea and Baku's peoples.
Morning in Baku
Favorite thing: Ate early so I could sit in the park before my driver arrived. The weather is slightly cloudy, very windy (I understand it always is in the morning and evening), and the temperature is in the low 70's. Absolutely beautiful. I now understand what they mean when they say classic European weather. This is close to heaven.
The tree-lined park has people strolling through it, dogs chasing each other around, birds singing and flying everywhere. It is nice to see that there are police booths every couple of blocks, all occupied, and they walk around and seem to be spending most of their time casually talking with local residents. Not a police-state feeling or anything intrusive. Just calm and comforting.
To avoid our driver getting hung up in traffic near the hotel, we get out and walk through the park, a couple of plazas, and along some back streets. I see what is meant about old world charm. People sweeping the streets in front of their businesses. Stop at the pub and get a pint of Guiness. Try for some onion rings. They have to check. Maybe the gas is not working today. If not, no hot food. No one worries. Other foods available. Beer and liquor available. Cold cuts and salads available. No problem. Love that attitude.
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
- Hiking and Walking
Visa at Baku airport
Favorite thing: I flew in to Baku on the 19th of July 2006 and got the visa quickly (I was one of the first arriving to the counter). With me I had two passport pictures and an application form that I had already filled in (you can get the application form from www.mfa.gov.az/eng/consular/visa.shtml).
Other people didn't have the application form or photos and had to stand to the side to fill in the form and queue for taking photos (and pay for the photos). No letter of invitation is needed.
First you have to show your passport to the passport controller and then you go on to the visa counter for the visa (it cost 40 dollars and it is valid for 30 days) and then back to the passport control to get a stamp. Even as I had a visa for Armenia there was no problems to get the Azeri visa.
- Road Trip
Walk on the promenade
Favorite thing: Baku has a beautiful seaside promenade along the Caspian Sea. Its lenght is about 3km and offers a great view of the city. Azeris call it "Bulvar" the Boulevard. You can get on a boat ride or sit at one of the outdoor cafes or tea-houses... there is amusement park for children and a huge Wheel of Fortune for adults. It's great to walk on the bulvar if you want to see and be seen ;-) There is a huge fountain like Geyser in the sea with the height of 130m (even taller than the one in Geneve). The bulvar starts from the Palace of Hand Games in Azneft and finishes with the Sea Port by the Liberty Square.
Fondest memory: I have the fondest memories of my childhood connected to bulvar. I loved the rides there and eating ice-cream in outdoor cafes. I miss walking by the water and hearing the sound of waves, watching the seagullls fight, sitting on a bench and reading early Sunday morning... and I always enjoyed riding my roller blades there!
- Theme Park Trips
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
Read "Ali and Nino" by Kurban Sa'id
Favorite thing: If you are at all interested in the culture and history of Azerbaijan and Georgia, then I can recommend a good book..."Ali and Nino" tells the tale of Muslim Ali Khan Shirvanshir who falls head over heels in love with Christain Nino Kipiani. The story takes place in the early years of the 20th century, a time of great upheaval in the region...and throughout this, Ali, the narrator, struggles to understand his love for Nino the European while preserving his own cultural identity. Romance, adventure, history, murder, humour, intrigue, an insight into Islamic thought and a dramatic setting...all the ingredients for a fantastic read.
Set primarily in Baku, the two lovers visit relatives in Tbilisi, flee to Teheran during the Russian invasion of Baku, and spend time in exile in a Daghestani mountain aoul...so if you are travelling in the region, Kurban Sa'id's extraordinary novel should make the perfect travel companion.
I first read this book in Tbilisi, after my trip to Baku, and found it interesting to see which places I recognised from the story, like the Shirvanshir's palace in Baku and the old baths in Tbilisi. Since then, I've read the novel several times, and even ended up teaching it to a very advanced group of English students in Khartoum! I think this may be my favourite book ;@P
The best view of the city
Favorite thing: Baku (spelt Baki (with an undotted Turkish i) in Azeri) is a pleasant city situated on the Caspian Sea. For a panoramic view over the whole city, the best place to go is Martyrs' Lane (see below) on top of the hill to the south-west of the centre...walk along the sea-front until you find a disused funicular railway, and take the steps to the top.
Peoples of Baku
Favorite thing: Ok..azerbaijan ppls called as Azzeri ... for ladies.... more beautiful, nice and up-to-date with fashion. Here some pictures of local activities at the city centre
Favorite thing: You will find it on several public buildings and on the old city walls. What may look like 3 onions is in fact.....smbody HELP with this one, plsssss
- Road Trip
- Historical Travel
- Arts and Culture
Favorite thing: Old part of the city is really fascinating
Fondest memory: My favourite part in Baku was the harbour and the old city
- Adventure Travel