Azerbaijan A short trip

Baku, the city old and new

The old town s surrounded by a high wall with just a few gates. Inside are narrow passage ways, mosques, palaces and the resting places of camel train drivers, from the silk road. These ancient buildings where the camel trains rested are now good restaurants with a wonderful Eastern atmosphere

Part of the old town walls showing one of the gates into the old town
Map of the old town

Here the streets are narrow passages with buildings made of yellow sand stone. There are no cars as they are too narrow and too many steps. Here there are small shops and coffee houses.

The people are extremely friendly always trying to be helpful, even taking you to where you want to go before continuing their journey.

Often the houses have projecting rooms on the upper level. These are made of wood.

The old town is built on a hill so many of the streets have steps. Not once did we see any grafiti in Bacu nor was there any litter.

Traders from China passed through and rested in Baku and many of these buildings are still in use although some are only very interesting ruins

One of the ruined hostels from the silk road

This is an interesting hostel turned into a restaurant with stone rooms with barrel ceilings.

Tania at the restaurant eating lime leaf dolmades
This is the most important building and is the symbol of Baku

The palaces are beautiful with many internal courtyards with flowers, fish ponds and shady areas under trees

A palace courtyard

But there are also some beautiful buildings within the palace walls

The main palace courtyard has beautiful sandstone columns giving shade in the summer.

And elegant stone arches

And ornamented doorways leading from the palace living areas and the courtyard.

Inside the palace area there is a tomb

The new Baku and oil

From the top of the funicular rail looking over the Caspian

The are are many new modern buildings and even more under construction

The new buildings

Along the shore is a garden area about 200 meters deep and about a kilometre long. This garden has flower beds, fountains statues and very attractive open cafes one playing quiet Jazz in the background. These gardens were full of people during the day and crowded in the evening.

Azerbaijan is a Muslim country but women don't wear veils and dress the same as in Europe. The people are very friendly and always try to help strangers. Quite a lot speak English

The sea park
Here all the cakes are hand made on the premises
Tania in a small cafe

We had green tea made in a charcoal burning samovar and freshly made Azerbaijan cakes. The son of the owners played and sung Azerbaijan folk songs to us. At the time we were the only customers.

There are beautiful gardens. This picture shows roses climbing up the trees in a park. The parks were busy with parents and children

We had two visits out into the arid region

Outside the city it quickly becomes very arid

About sixty kilometres out of Baku we visited an area that had been nhabited around twenty thousand years ago. This was a very rocky area

The rocks with petroglyphs
The people collected water in deep holes in the rock

The holes are cut into the bedrock and growers carry water from one hole to the next

The. People carved figures in the rocks including horses, goats, a boat and human figures

Human figures
A goat with horns

The second trip again out in the desert was to a small village where we visited a small vegetable market. Here we went to a tomb up in the hills. I think we might have been the first foreign visitors in years

The tomb was built in the middle of the 14 th century and is partly cut into the cliff.

Azerbaijan is a great place to visit

The end

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