Baku is one of the largest industrial, scientific and cultural centers not only of the country, as well as in the entire region. It is a major port on the west coast of the Caspian Sea, in the southern part of the Absheron Peninsula.
It is a lively and very interesting city, where life does not stop even at night. Over the last ten years, Baku has greatly changed: new multi-store buildings of shopping centers, hotels, and banks harmonize very well with the old buildings. Baku is divided into 11 administrative districts.
Maiden Tower (Baku)
The Maiden Tower (Azerbaijani: Qız qalası) is a 12th-century monument in the Old City, Baku, Azerbaijan. Along with the Shirvanshahs' Palace, dated to the 15th century, it forms a group of historic monuments listed in 2001 under the UNESCO World Heritage List of Historical Monuments as cultural property, Category III. It is one of Azerbaijan's most distinctive national emblems and is thus featured on Azeri currency notes and official letterheads.
Palace of the Shirvanshahs
The Palace of the Shirvanshahs (Azerbaijani: Şirvanşahlar Sarayı) is a 15th-century palace built by the Shirvanshahs and described by UNESCO as "one of the pearls of Azerbaijan's architecture". It is located in the Inner City of Baku, Azerbaijan and, together with the Maiden Tower, forms an ensemble of historic monuments inscribed under the UNESCO World Heritage List of Historical Monuments. The complex contains the main building of the palace, Divanhane, the burial-vaults, the shah's mosque with a minaret, Seyid Yahya Bakuvi's mausoleum (the so-called "mausoleum of the dervish"), south of the palace, a portal in the east, Murad's gate, a reservoir and the remnants of a bathhouse. Earlier, there was an ancient mosque, next to the mausoleum.
Martyrs' Lane, Alley of Martyrs or Şəhidlər Xiyabanı, formerly The Kirov Park, is a cemetery and memorial in Baku, Azerbaijan dedicated to those killed by the Soviet Army during Black January and later to those killed in Nagorno-Karabakh War. Martyrs' Lane is also home to Baku Turkish Martyrs' Memorial, the large memorial to the 1,130 Turkish troops, which were killed while fighting Bolshevik and Armenian forces in the Battle of Baku in 1918. Next to the memorial, there is a Martyrs mosque also built by Turks.
Fire Temple is also known as the Temple of Eternal fire – Ateshgah. The place is well familiar across the different countries of the world. Originally it is located 30KM from the center of City Baku in the Surakhany Suburb.
It is well familiar due to the unique phenomenon of nature which is actually the burning of the natural gas. This temple consists of many natural gas burning outlets. In this phenomenon, the gas from the earth crust comes out of the surface of the earth and when it contacts with the oxygen it lights up. The present look of the temple was constructed back in the 17th and 18th century. And originally built by the Hindu community related to the Baku Sikhs. The history of the Fire Temple Baku is very interesting and even longer. In the ancient time, that place was the Holy Place of Zoroastrians which use to worship the fire. This inextinguishable fire holds a mystical significance for them and that’s why they came here to worship fire.
Burning Mountain – “Yanardag”
Yanar Dag (Azerbaijani: Yanar Dağ, meaning "burning mountain") is a natural gas fire which blazes continuously on a hillside on the Absheron Peninsula on the Caspian Sea near Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan (a country which itself is known as "the Land of Fire"). Flames jet into the air 3 meters (9.8 ft) from a thin, porous sandstone layer.
Administratively, Yanar Dag belongs to Absheron District of Azerbaijan. Azerbaijan is historically called the Land of Fire, and it is not for the sake of a witty remark. At a whim of nature, the land of this Caucasian country located on the picturesque coast of the Caspian Sea is replete with underground sources of oil and gas that long for blowing out. Natural gas in the Azerbaijan bowels is so much that it comes to the surface over and over again. In some places, a match dropped accidentally or deliberately, a torch, or any spark can ignite the gas, which will keep on burning until it fully exhausts. In times of old, Azerbaijan was a country of fire-worshippers, followers of the Zoroastrian cult. People believed that fire sources were the manifestation of divine power, they worshiped them, building altars and temples.
One of the most famous and popular tourist places of the "eternal flame” in Azerbaijan is the mountain of Yanar Dag. Actually, it is rather a hill than a mountain, with natural gas burning on its slope from ancient times. Meter-long tongues of fire are licking the stratified earth approximately 10 m in width, searing those who approached too close.
Gobustan National Park
Gobustan preserve is located in the eastern part of Azerbaijan, on the territory of Beyukdash, Kichikdash and Jingirdag Mountains of Big Gobustan. Gobustan preserve is widely known for its rock engravings, monuments of primitive culture not only in our republic but also on the world scale. These monuments are ancient drawings, cupules for preparing fluid diet and gathering of rainwater, two-sided hollows for tying-up animals, signs, tamgas, ancient inscriptions and so on. Revealed and registered on more than a thousand rocks and stones these monuments were created by an ancient man and are the reflection of his agricultural and intellectual activity. Petroglyphs of Gobustan are artistic chronicles of the past. They bear great importance both for the study of the pre-history of humanity and for the study of lots of spheres of primitive art: graphics, music, dances, the art of stone processing, etc. Gobustan monuments cover the period of approximately 20 thousand years beginning since the end of Upper Paleolith till the beginning of our era.