In this tour we invite you to become familiar with Guba – the land of apple flavor. Guba is famous for its apples, which have long become a symbol of the town . Famous French writer Alexandre Dumas, writer Bestuzhev-Marly, the famous Norwegian scientist and explorer Thor Heyerdahl visited Guba. Guba is also recognized as a center for carpet weaving in Azerbaijan.
Day 1. Baku
Check-in at the airport
After a short rest we start our tour.
Excursion to the Old City tour begins with a visit to the Upland Park.
Upland Park is located on a hill in the western part of the city. This is the best place to see the city and the Baku Bay. The tour proceeds with the visit to the Old City – with its fortress walls, historical buildings and narrow paved streets. The tourists will see and appreciate the main attractions of the Old City, including the Palace of the Shirvanshahs and the famous Maiden Tower. Just imagine that the bricks under your shoes for centuries keep memory of city’s history, its fame and glory, its grieves and sufferings. During the walk you will definitely feel that the air smells like a magic – salty and oily odor of the Caspian Sea mixes up with the flavors of Oriental spices and kabab from the numerous restaurants. Baku is a young girl – it is full of energy, beautiful, bright and vivid. It is ready to change but nevertheless follows the traditions of ancestors. Behind the walls the city life sparkles like a melting pot, while in the Old City everything is calm and dutiful as it was for centuries. Baku people do not like to live in hurry.
We continue our city tour showing you the most interesting historical and architectural monuments.
We continue with Cultural Centre named after Heydar Aliyev. Heydar Aliyev Center is a cultural center, projected as a complex structure that includes the Auditorium (convention center), a museum, exhibition halls, administrative offices. The project center has been designed by renowned architect Zaha Hadid. Heydar Aliyev Cultural Centre is considered to be one of the symbols of modern Baku.
!!! !!! In case of late arrival we provide night excursion without museums entry.
Day 2. Baku- Guba
Breakfast at the hotel. Check-out. Trip to Guba.
We start a trip to the north of Azerbaijan, to the town of Guba.
On the way to Guba, we will turn from the main road and go to the foot of the mount with a medieval fortress Chirag-Gala at its top. This fortress was built in the IV- VI centuries AD at the height of 1232 meters above sea level. Along with Baku and Derbent Fortresses it was a part of a powerful system of fortifications of the Caspian coast. Under assumptions of experts, the fortress was a patrol observation building. On top of the cliff the main tower of the fortress is located, allowing surveying the neighborhood for tens of kilometers. According to the legend the fire was lit on top Chirag-Gala in order to warn of approaching enemies. Probably, hence the name of is Chiraggala – “Fortress-lamp”.
!!! Depending on weather conditions a trip to the fortress can be canceled.
We continue our journey to the city of carpets and apples – Guba.
Guba is located in the North-Eastern slopes of Mount Shahdag in Greater Caucasus, at an altitude of 600 m above sea level, on the banks of the river Gudial river, in 168 km from Baku. Thanks to the successful location and rich infrastructure, Guba district is one of the favorite tourist destinations.
The tourists usually choose for their rest Gyachresh area where you can relax in the shady woods, at Tangaalti gorge, where the river carries turbulent waters of Velvelichai river, it is also famous with Afurdzha waterfall, which is included in the list of “Monuments of Azerbaijani Nature”.
We will stroll through the city. Despite the fact that now Guba is a small town, in the Middle Ages it was the capital of Guba Khanate. The most interesting places – Juma Mosque and a carpet factory where locals weave carpets with characteristic patterns that are common in this region.
Check in at the hotel.
Overnight in Guba.
Day 3. Guba – Krasnaya Sloboda – Khynalyq
Breakfast at the hotel. Start of the excursion
Krasnaya Sloboda is a unique place in the Caucasus, densely populated with 3,000 mountain Jews. Jewish people live here since the 13th century. In 1742, the local governor Fatalihan gave permission to the Jews persecuted by Islamic fundamentalists, to settle on the left bank of the mountain river Kudiyalchai in front of the city. In the village still are left seven synagogues. They are all built of brick, and the largest ones are decorated with domes. Red roofs, carved limestone panel, steep cliffs near the village – these are the distinctive features of the settlement.
Lunch in the village, consisting of traditional dishes (extra charge).
Not far from the village of Krasnaya Sloboda Khinalig village is situated where live 2000 Khynalygs – small ethnic group, who preserve its own language, customs and traditions. Small, magical Khinalig is located high in the Caucasus mountains, at an altitude of 2350 m above sea level in the Guba region. Khynalygs have been living in the Caucasus for thousands of years. Until 2006, due to the bad roads Khinalig was beyond the reach of the first nine months of the year. However, the situation has changed in recent years, and now more and more local and foreign tourists visit this remote village.
The village is inhabited by 2,000 light-skinned, blue-eyed people who consider themselves to be descendants of the Prophet Noah. Guests can take a short walk around the village. In good weather, the slopes offer a view of the snow-capped peaks of the Caucasus. Return to Guba.
Overnight at hotel.
Day 4. Guba –Baku – Excursion to the fire temple Atashgakh and Yanardag hill
Trip to Baku
Check in at the hotel
After a short break the group goes on the next tour.
Azerbaijan is one of the few places on earth, where even today one can observe elements of preserved fire cult and the ancient Zoroastrianism religion. These places where oil oozes from the earth, and natural gas breaks out like flaming torches have always attracted fire worshipers from around the world. Baku, its oil, its “burning earth” have been known far beyond its borders since ancient times. The official religion of the ancient states that emerged in the VII century BC, such as Mann and Midia was Zoroastrianism. The spread of Zoroastrianism in the territory of the modern Azerbaijan was due to spontaneously flammable sources of oil and gas. Therefore, in this area such a monument as the temple Ateshgah has survived.
Fire Temple Ateshgah (literally Fire House) is located in 30 kilometers from the center of Baku, in the south-eastern outskirts of the Absheron Peninsula.
Coming up next on the program guests will visit the village Mehemmedli.
Next to this small village in the Absheron peninsula Mount Yanardagh is situated. The word “Yanar” in Azeri language means “burning”, and “Dagh” – “mountain”. And this is real a burning mountain – not metaphorically, but literally. Once in Absheron it had been a lot of places where natural gas coming out from the earth to the surface ignited spontaneously, but with the start of mass extraction of oil and gas in Absheron these places started to disappear. At present, it is the only place of this unique natural phenomenon – the output of natural gas to the surface.
Night in Baku
Day 5. Baku
Breakfast in the hotel.
End of the tour.