понедельник, 4 апреля 2011 г.

Why to go to Baku. Azerbaijan

Instead of beginning

Took first in the eleventh year journey.

Unlike previous trips, this time in one city has been allocated nearly six full days. This new format for me to explore the area fully justified.
Despite the increased costs of accommodation, time increases to a comfortable visit to the city and its attractions. Do not have anywhere to run early in the morning, afraid that something will not have time. No hassles. Came, stayed, slept, and then go out into the city to breathe his air.


It should be noted that this time the city smelled like the best city in the world. Perhaps the reason for this proximity to the sea. Or zero temperature. Or local flora. Surely I can only say one thing - in Baku's surprisingly easy to breathe!


And since travel formats change, then let it evolve and formats of narrative.
I propose to break the story on the thematic clusters. This will allow more fully portray what they see. Chronology of events because, in fact, no one is interesting.
So, let's begin.





Where is it and how to get there 

I will not dwell on geography. Who are curious, he can always look at the map, or read the same Wikipedia.
Identified only by that Baku lies on the southern shore of the Absheron Peninsula, which, in turn, is located on the western shore of the Caspian Sea. That is, it's just south of our Dagestan. Here is the sea, the former USSR, and the Transcaucasus.



In Baku, there is the railway station, a marina, entrances and exits by road. But from Moscow, the easiest way - it's a plane. Just three hours of flight, and here you are at the international airport named after Heydar Aliyev.




Notable oddity: from the airport can be reached only by taxi or minibus! Public transportation, for some reason, is completely absent in this
direction.




Taxi to the two ends (from the airport today, and the airport a few days) costs about 50 manat. AZN, for simplicity, accounts, convenient to equate the euro. Refine penny makes sense only for large spending.

Plane ticket costs 07.10 rubles back and forth. I think it's a good price to consider Azerbaijan as a place for the tour weekend.




Who lives there 

Clearly, in Baku, Azeris live. The people are not exotic - every day we meet in their cities dozens of its members. But the local Azerbaijanis are different from their counterparts living in Russia so that they live in Azerbaijan. It's their land, and on it they can display all their hospitality.



Most people met in Baku said in Russian. An exception is the small number of children and youth. All around, the streets and in public transport, people say in plain language. Even many of the pupils and students. So no language barrier in arrivals from Russia will not. Accent and intonation features added to their charm.




People there are very friendly, nice, flattered by the attention to their country. Many beautiful girls and dandified young people.
The only unpleasant moment - they all go into the black. Nine out of ten people will be dressed in black jackets, pants, skirts, shoes, hats ... All black. That contrasts badly with the general tone of urban architecture.




City 

But the overall tone of city streets in January - sand. All the houses in the historic part of town are made of local limestone nice sand color. The architecture is dominated by modern and eclectic, with elements of Moorish style. Despite the whole "European" Baku, the architectural elements of his buildings clearly say that we in the East - everywhere visible national ornaments, pinnacles, window bars.




The town was built at the turn of 19-20 centuries, a clear plan of where the series of parallel streets stretching from west to east, and the streets perpendicular to them - from north to south.
Along the sea, instead of the waterfront, lies the seaside boulevard decorated with palm trees, rides, Christmas trees, hundreds of people walking Bakunians.



Completely separate, especially paragraph among the city's attractions is the Old city (Old Town). Many even go to Baku only to visit this historical and cultural reserve. Network of streets, walkways, ladders, and passageways form a labyrinth, surrounded by walls, which can easily be lost even with the card.



It is here, in one of the streets, filmed the famous piece "Brilliant hands" about "Damn!".




Inside the old city is a symbol of Baku - the Maiden Tower. She is stocky, not tall, not very pretty, but looks great from the Caspian Sea.


Go to the main gate of Inner city adjacent Fountain Square - very European place. From Baku is not spacious squares, the host of famous shops, modern sculptural installations, elegant futuristic lamp posts, but it is all there is. A pedestrian quarter is located near the beautiful illuminated buildings, idle passers-by, cozy cafes. 


Many people still think that Baku should be similar to the fruit market. I kept asking relatives and friends, comfortable for me out there, why I went there, that there may be good. And then - well! I would recommend to look in Baku for a few days in the spring. Will be green and not so cold. 


Gobustan 

This historical park is 70 km from Baku. About this place is known far beyond the borders of Azerbaijan. There are two reasons for this popularity. The first - rock drawings of cave men. On the reserve meets several thousand petroglyphs. They depict mostly men and bulls. People hunt, bulls graze, pregnant people, the bulls were killed ... In general, the usual prehistoric "Santa Barbara". 


The second reason - Latin inscription that there was a 12-second legion of the Roman Emperor. They say it's the easternmost inscription in Latin. On this basis, suggest that around here took place the eastern border of the Roman Empire.


Look at the creativity the Romans failed. The exhibit is located in an inaccessible place. But creativity cavemen available in sufficient quantities to satisfy curiosity. 


But I liked it in Gobustan not for antiquities. Even if they were not, here would be worth coming out for the incredible Martian landscape. Sharp rocks rise above the flat plain of severe, for which see the old lead water of the Caspian Sea. Here is a poetic garbage comes to mind when you stand on the edge of the limestone, pitted wells cavemen. 



Kitchen 

Food in Azerbaijan, in my opinion, monotonously varied. Either way it will be meat and bread. Barbecue and bread, and pita shaurma, cheburek or do not remember the name, but the taste - the same cheburek. There are soups, rice, dolma ... But it all gets lost among the various Dehner, kebabs and lula. 


The most interesting culinary supervision - to the meat dishes, or even while you're expecting a meal, bring a whole plate of parsley. This mountain of fresh parsley. And while you're waiting for your barbecue, you can pohrustet greens. 



Many restaurants do not have a menu of alcohol. Only tea, coffee and juices. Although in some places pour the perfect pomegranate wine. 
Of course, no pork. Terms of only one lamb. And, strangely, almost no fish. Like the sea and fish there. And the fruit on the roar mostly Turkish. 



And all the garbage 

Interestingly, in contrast to their neighbors, the Georgians and Armenians, Azerbaijanis, as a people, if you believe Wikipedia, formed only to the 16 century. And the word Azerbaijan originally referred only to the territories which are now called South Azerbaijan, belonging to Iran. The concept of "Azeris" to install only in 1930 when these lands and these people were a part of the Soviet Union. 


In Baku, there is almost no stray dogs. Many cats and dogs - no. 


In subway before to announce the name of the station, the music plays. At each station - is different. 


None of the inscription on the subway, or on the street signs are not duplicated in English or Russian. 


Any major construction in the country is named after Heydar Aliyev. 


In Baku, is home to over two million people. 


Azerbaijan can be translated as "Land of Fire", and Baku - as the "city of winds". 



Instead of a conclusion 

I'll be brief. Baku is good and beautiful. Maybe at another time there and have the tourists, but in early January, I have not seen a single person with a camera. The only European tourists, met in the palace of Shirvan. Baku Tourist life is just beginning. Have time to catch the eastern town atmosphere. Soon, there will induce gloss, and the city becomes like a hybrid of Barcelona, ​​Dubai. It is not bad, no. But it will be a completely different city. 









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