Mr. Ali Azerli is a very interesting man with many stories to tell you about Azerbaijan and many sights in and near Baku. He also has a very interesting story to tell about himself. Ali was imprisoned by the Soviet authorities for his political views when Azerbaijan was part of the Soviet Union. I met in the small square near the Seyid Yahya’s Mosque, not far from the Maiden’s Tower. He his happy to offer you a guided tour of places like the ‘James Bond’ oil fields, the mud volcanoes, Fire Mountain and even take you to the base of a semi-active volcanoes. The last one you can climb to the top and – carefully – walk across the warm crater at the top.
If you just want a city tour, or trusted collection form the airport, Ali is your man. You can ring him and make arrangements before you get here. He speaks very interesting English which turns colourful if he encounters a bad driver. In fact in a country that prides itself on extremely dangerous driving, Ali is actually very safe.
3 important things to remember.
1. Ali’s prices are negotiable
2. Baku has bad traffic, so it does take a while to drive to some of the sites
3. Ali has a Danish flag on the dashboard of his car (a gift from a happy customer)
State Carpet Museum is definitely worth a visit! It is in the building with big columns across the street from the Boulevard where the Lenin museum used to be. Entrance fee for foreigners is about $5 and beware of the $1 fee for EVERY picture taken. The carpets on display are absolutely gorgeous though! You will see flat-woven carpets, national costumes, carpets from Guba, Shirvan, Garabagh, Gazakh-Genje, and Tebriz schools. There are carpets from the 17th to early 20th centuries. For the price of $20 you can even put on a national Azeri costume and have your professional picture taken with old carpets in the background :)
One of the delights of Baku especially in summer is a walk around the fountain square. It is a splendid display of different fountain ideas and wonderful occasion for people watching. Not to mention the relief of pain in your tired legs in the sweltering heat and the opportunity to take yet another life-giving sip of water or other liquid. This is a wonderful remainder of all the fascination of the Arabs and other peoples inhabiting the hot lands of the same latitude from Spainto China. Enjoy!
One of the things that the locals seem to enjoy is a pleasure boat trip. So, why not just follow them and see what happens. Lots of kids and teenagers excitedly chatter and take maximum of pictures to immortalize this seemingly mundane event. Yes, indeed there is nothing more refreshing than the power of the sea breeze in the midst of the day heat. Plus, for the foreigner, it helps to grasp better the location of Baku and obtain a sense of what is where, relatively speaking. Added asset is the Azeri flag on board which is a necessary attribute for proof of your whereabouts.
You can walk from "tarkoy", and arrive to old town, very beauty place from old years that Baku was one of Iran's cities. You can see Iranian alphabetical in some old constructions. In those years Baku was the gate of Europe for Iran and named "Baadkoobe". (Wind beater)
I enjoyed times by walking on seaside, in shore that was about 30km far from city we swim in clean tidy water that I haven't seen in Iran Caspian shore. I think it's because for material of land that was a yellow sands .Baku in opposite of north of Iran and Lankuran area is not in jungle and water full rivers that made shore muddy!
I ride Jet Ski and boats on modern clean shore.
Baku yacht Club is situated almost in the center of the world and its one of the beautiful buildings of the city .No need to say that the winds of this caspian sea gives a lot of chances for good sailing
Formerly "Lenin museum", the neo-classical building now houses the Carpet and Applied Arts Museum and above it the Theatre Museum. The Kerimov carpet collection is a must in Baku, with exhibits from all periods, styles and from both Azerbaijan proper and the Azeri provinces in Iran (closed Monday).
Formerly the V.I. Lenin palace of culture, then the Republic Palace, like many other places it was renamed after President Haydar Aliyev folllowing his death. This concrete and glass building faces a wide square with gardens and fountains and the red tower of the National Bank of Azerbaijan. The Republic palace can seat an audience of 2000. Its contruction dates from the 1970s, with a desing by architects V.Shulgin and E. Melkhisedekov.
A large memorial to the Turkish troops killed fighting against Russia in the early 20th century is located here, as well as the 'martyrs mosque' also built by the Turks. Not far from the Turkish memorial there is a small wall acknowledging the British soldiers killed in the same conflict.
Formerly the Kirov park, the space is now dedicated to the memory of those who lost their lives during the war with Armenia and also to the 137 people who were killed on 19 & 20 January 1990 when Soviet tanks and troops took to the streets of Baku (often called "Black January"). Photographs of victims featured on each tomb-stone are sobering and poignant. Now 20 January has become a national holiday of deep emotional meaning.
Cuma means Friday ...This mosque hosted for a long time the carpets museum, but is now back to its original use. The building you can see today dates from the early twentieth century, courtesy of an oil baron, but stands over the remains of preceding buildings. Its main attraction is the intricate stone ornamentation.
The Imam and his assistants are Turks who studied in both Iran and Iraq. Services were on several occasions restricted by the authorities, due to 'radical' content.
Built on what was till the late 19th century a moor, used for hunting, today's government palace is nothing but the former "house of the Soviets". The magnificent outside architecture is the result of a competition won in 1934 by muscovite architects L.Rudnev and V.Munts. The works started soon after the competition but the war and further delays only allowed for the building to be completed only 20 years after. German prisoners of war or widely used in its construction. Its 12 floors are more appealing outside than inside. A 12 metre tall statue of Lenin by D.Kariagdy is gone long ago.
Fountain square is Baku's most fashionable area, where you go to see and be seen. The square is surrounded by sophisticated restaurants and shops. The long and often dry fountain serves as an endless bench for lazy afternoons and evenings.There is also one clock in this square
Iceri Sehir(Icheri-Shekher) means "inner city".large fortresses encounters the "inner city"
The old quarter (9th century) of Baku contains with narrow streets, mosques, and a minaret dating from 1078 and the Shirvan Sah 's palace 17th century, now a museum. The inner city is in the list of world heritage of Unesco.
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