Ancient Azerbaijan is situated on Central Asia. Azerbaijan is a geographic name. On the one hand this name is linked with the population, which lived in this region for thousand of years before our era, and who were mostly fire-worshippers. Local population considered that fire was their God and so they worshipped the fire. «Azer» means fire. On the other hand, the word «Azerbaijan» originates from the name of an ancient Turkish tribe and the word «Azer» means «a brave man», «a brave boy», «the fire keeper». The most beautiful place of Azerbaijan is North — west destination. It is most famous touristic route Baku — Shemaha — Gabal — Sheki — Baku — Absheron Peninsula and Baku city tour. Here we will see european architecture of Baku buildings, old caravanserai, palace of Shirvanshahs dinasty, Maiden Tower and other.
Upon arrival to International airport of Baku the tourist will be meted by representative of www.azerbaijanadventures.com after meeting we will take road to the hotel. Upon arrival to the hotel we will have check in to the hotel and have a free time.
Breakfast in the hotel. Sightseeing tour of Baku with a visit and tour of the monumental, historical and architectural monuments of the city: you will see a panorama of the city of Baku Bay and the Upland Park.
Then follows the visiting of the old city *Icheri sheher-the inner city*. Icheri sheher means the inner city. It was called the inner after the oil boom of the middle of the XIX century when the city stopped to hold in defense walls and left its limit. Several tens of the historical- architectural monuments at the same time the Shirvanshakhs Palace, the symbol of Baku city The Maiden Tower, the place of merchants rest Karavansaray are concentrated in the Icheri sheher, with the square of 22 hectares. Icheri sheher is the live organism which has its own infrastructure and inhabited files. The place where 1300 families are living. In a word it is an ancient city in the modern city. Visit Carpet Museum, Boat trip on Caspian Sea (duration 30 min). Visit Heydar Aliyev Cultural center. The most attractive and interesting section of the Center, which is engaged in studying, promoting and protecting Heydar Aliyev’s heritage, is the Museum of Heydar Aliyev. Notable for its design and the application of cutting-edge technologies, the Museum is in harmony with the rest of the Center. The Museum describes the history of Azerbaijan and different stages of Heydar Aliyev’s life and work. The information is communicated to visitors in an interactive format. The three-floor museum displays interesting facts, photo and video material, as well as some unique exhibits relating to nationwide leader Heydar Aliyev.
Today after breakfast our guide will be waiting on reception in hotel. We will start our tour with excursion to Ateshgah. The temple of fire worshippers Ateshgah is located at the Apsheron peninsula at the outskirts of Surakhani village in 30 km from the centre of Baku and was revered in different times by Zoroastrians, Hindus and Sikhs. Current constructions of the temple are dated by XVII century. As a result of excavations far more ancient artifacts were discovered here. Pentagonal complex has an open courtyard with temple-altar in the center which was the place of pilgrimage for worshippers. By the decree of the President of Azerbaijan Ateshgah was declared a State historical-architectural reserve. This museum under the open sky was recently restored. Different workshops and souvenir galleries are located here now.
Excursion to Burning Mountain Yanar Dag. You can see here nature phenomenon, incessant burning nature gas on the rock which named to the Yanar Dag reserve the burning rock. As the historians say, maybe this place gave the name *the fire country* to Azerbaijan.
Azerbaijan has many secrets that are able to express the ancient beauty. Shamakhi is an especial city among the others. Long ago it was a capital of well-known Shirvan Empire. Here representatives of Shirvan Dynasty lived. Nowadays Shamakhi is thought to be a place with very developed winemaking. Visiting this city you have an opportunity to observe an outstanding mausoleum called Yeddi Gumbez. Its magnificent domes rise above the silent and lonesome landscapes and create mysterious atmosphere. Then in Shamakhi you can find an interesting architecture Diri Baba. This is a famous tomb place. Its architectural complex bears a clear evidence of the middle ages. Diri Baba was built on the rock and look like a big eagle nest. To investigate it you must be strong as you should climb a straight wall. But after you do it, you’ll see a sacred place from inside. Before we come up closer to it we see only one facade but the other sides are hidden in cliffs. The monument has two stores. Scientists say that the first one could be used by servants. The salon is in the second floor. You could get there using stairs. The tourists have different opinions about this monument. One thinks it to be a real sacred place while another see it as a simple burial place. Arrival to Gabala. Check in to the hotel. Overnight
After breakfast visit Gabala Land park, Nohur lake, Albanian Church in Nij village and Seven Beauties waterfall. Christian church in Nij village is very old. Age of the church is 1500 years. Gabala was the capital of ancient Caucasus Albania along 600 years. Then take road to Sheki. Arrival to Sheki and overnight
An excursion to Sheki will bring you a good portion of joy. This is the oldest city in Azerbaijan. In ancient times people sold silk here. It was famous among merchants from the Great Silk Road. Sheki has a big History museum where tourist could investigate artifacts from different periods. Another interesting place is Khan’s summer Palace. It has wonderful facades decorated with floral motives. Interior design of it impresses even more. Here you can see different frescoes painted by the best craftsman. Some of them feature flowers, while another give us a picture of ancient hunting or scenes of battles. To build a palace masters used bricks, river stones and oak. It has 6 rooms. You can also see two beautiful mirrored balconies here. In other decoration rare colored Venetian glass is used. All rooms in this palace have especial decorations. We can find here refined miniatures featuring birds, animals, paradise scenes. All these paintings were made with bright colors. This building shows us that even in 17th century wall-painting was rather developed. The first floor of this palace shows the richness and powerful reign of khans. A great number of animals and hunting motives on the walls are thought to be symbols of nobility. In ancient times the palace was surrounded by beautiful garden. Nowadays we see only two big trees here.
Excursion to the village Kish. Village Kish famous for its huge Christian architectural monument. This is Albanian church which history goes back to 6th-7th centuries. An ancient cemetery is located near the temple. All burial places are under the glass cupola. Looking through it you can see remains of ancient humans. They impress with their height. Sometimes they appear to be 2,5 meter or higher. ncient Albanian people were giants with white skin. Their hair was golden. They looked unlike modern Caucasian nations.
Then drive to Baku. Arrival to Baku and overnight
Today after breakfast our guide will be waiting on reception in hotel. Excursion to Gobustan. On the way stop near Bibi Heybat Mosque. Gobustan geographical region is situated in East Azerbaijan and borders on the southern slope of Big Caucasus ridge in the north, Pirsaat River in the west, Harami and Mishov mountains in the south, the Caspian Sea and Absheron peninsula in the east. Gobustan — is an archaeological reserve in Azerbaijan, south of Baku, in Garadagh and Absheron regions, representing a plain located between the south- eastern slope of the Greater Caucasus Mountain Range and the Caspian Sea , and part of which is a cultural landscape of rock carvings , located in the 537 hectares. Gobustan monuments are divided into two groups: 1) petroglyphs and 2 ) ancient sites and other facilities. Gobustan mountains under the names Boyukdash , Kichikdash Djingirdag , Shongardag Shyhgaya and focused evidence about the inhabitants of the region of the Stone Age and subsequent periods — carvings , parking rights, tombstones and other drawings were found at three locations on a rocky plateau, and found here once inhabited caves traces of settlements and tombs indicate that the densely populated area between the Upper Palaeolithic and the Middle Ages. Visiting mod volcanoes near Gobustan petroghlypht museum.
Then we will take road to Ethnographic Reserve GALA. Gala village is located about 40 minutes from Baku. Before him , few people knew and thought , but in recent years the popularity of this small village has become huge. And the reason is simple — someone came up with a great idea to do an archaeological site museum under the open sky. Coming to the museum , you feel caught in the olden days. Historical significance landmarks confirm that these places were ancient human settlements. » Bairamali hamam » was known in ancient times as » Hamam Bay .» Attributable to XII-XIV centuries this hamam in 1881 was also reconstructed person named Bayram . » Gum hamam » ( «Sand Bath» ) , located on a high hill , a long attention was not given proper attention . Attributable to XII-XIV centuries » Gum hamam » was discovered during archaeological excavations . » Gum hamam » ( «Sand Bath» ) was so named because of what was under the ground. Of particular interest is the » Shore hamam » ( «Salt Bath» )
Breakfast at the hote. Free time. Depend on departure time transfer to the airport.