When the great Russian poet Sergei Yesenin left Baku in 1925, he wrote that he felt “sadness”, i.e. it is difficult for him to part with hospitable Azerbaijan. Since then, Azerbaijan has changed a lot, but the people have remained the same – very hospitable. Tourists in Azerbaijan are waiting for beautiful mountains, delicious cuisine, the Caspian Sea, ancient cities, and, of course, hot and mineral springs.
Geography of Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan is located in the Transcaucasus, where Western Asia intersects with Eastern Europe. Azerbaijan borders on Russia in the north, Georgia in the northwest, Armenia in the west, and Iran in the south. In the east, Azerbaijan is washed by the waters of the Caspian Sea. The total area of this country, including the Nakhichevan enclave, is 86,600 square kilometers. km., and the total length of the state border is 2,648 km.
In the north of Azerbaijan there is the Greater Caucasus Range, in the center of the country there are vast plains, and in the southeast – the Talysh Mountains. In general, mountains occupy about 50% of the entire territory of Azerbaijan. The highest point is the peak of Bazarduzu, whose height reaches 4,466 meters.
There are more than 8 thousand rivers in Azerbaijan, and all of them flow into the Caspian Sea. The longest river is the Kura (1,515 km), and the largest lake is the Sarysu (67 sq. km.).
Capital of Azerbaijan
According to itypemba.com, the capital of Azerbaijan is Baku, which is now home to more than 2.1 million people. Archaeologists believe that people lived on the territory of modern Baku already in the 5th century AD.
The official language in Azerbaijan is Azeri, which belongs to the Oguz subgroup of the Turkic languages.
About 95% of the population of Azerbaijan consider themselves Muslims (85% are Shia Muslims and 15% are Sunni Muslims).
State structure of Azerbaijan
According to the current Constitution of 1995, Azerbaijan is a presidential republic. Its head is the President, elected for 5 years.
In Azerbaijan, the local unicameral Parliament is called the National Assembly (Milli Məclis), it consists of 125 deputies. Deputies of the National Assembly are elected by popular vote for 5 years.
According to equzhou.net, the main political parties in Azerbaijan are the New Party of Azerbaijan, the Equality Party and the National Unity.
Climate and weather
The climate in Azerbaijan is very diverse, due to its geographical location. The mountains and the Caspian Sea have a great influence on the climate. The climate is subtropical in the foothills and plains of Azerbaijan. In Baku in July and August, the daytime air temperature often reaches +38C, and at night it drops to +18C.
The best time to visit Azerbaijan is mid-April – end of August.
Sea in Azerbaijan
In the east, Azerbaijan is washed by the waters of the Caspian Sea, the coastline is 800 km. Azerbaijan owns three large islands in the Caspian Sea. By the way, the peoples who lived at different times in the region of the Caspian Sea gave it a total of about 70 names. This sea has been called the Caspian Sea since the 16th century.
Rivers and lakes
More than 8,000 rivers flow through the territory of Azerbaijan, but only 24 of them are longer than 100 km. There are very beautiful waterfalls on some mountain rivers. There are many lakes in the mountains of Azerbaijan. The most beautiful of them are Maral-Gol and Goy-Gel.
The first archaeological evidence of human life on the territory of modern Azerbaijan dates back to the end of the Stone Age. Azerbaijan in different historical epochs was conquered by Armenians, Persians, Romans, Arabs, Turks. The history of Azerbaijan is very rich in interesting events.
I millennium BC – the formation of the state of Manna with the capital Izirtu.
1st-4th centuries AD – Azerbaijan is part of the Caucasian Albania tribal association, which was subordinate to Ancient Rome.
III-IV centuries. AD – Caucasian Albania becomes Christian.
XIII-VIV centuries – Azerbaijan is in vassal dependence on the state of Khulaguids.
The end of the XIV century – the state of Shirvan appeared in the north of modern Azerbaijan.
The beginning of the 16th century – almost all the lands of Azerbaijan were united into one state – the state of the Safavids.
The first half of the 16th century – Shiism, a branch of Islam, becomes the state religion in Azerbaijan.
1724 – the territory of Azerbaijan is divided between Russia and the Ottoman Empire.
1920 – Azerbaijan Soviet Socialist Republic was formed.
1922-1936 – Azerbaijan is part of the Transcaucasian Socialist Federative Soviet Republic. 1936-1991 – Azerbaijan is part of the USSR.
1991 – Azerbaijan’s independence was declared.
Culture of Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan became an independent state only in 1991. Before that, for many centuries the territory of Azerbaijan was divided between neighboring empires – Russian and Ottoman. As a result, now the culture of Azerbaijan has a multi-ethnic character, but the religion – Shiism, one of the branches of Islam, has a decisive influence on it.
Every year, four weeks during the Novruz holiday in Azerbaijan, interesting religious events and festivals, folk festivals are held. An obligatory element of such festivities is jumping over a fire.
In addition, other holidays are celebrated on a grand scale in Azerbaijan – Ramadan-Bayram (November-February) and Gurban-Bayram.
Azerbaijani cuisine was greatly influenced by Turkish and Central Asian culinary traditions. The main Azerbaijani dish is pilaf with rice, to which they add various “fillings” (meat, fish, fruits, spices, etc.). A special place in the Azerbaijani cuisine belongs to fresh vegetable salads. Salads are usually served together with the main course (by the way, there are more than 30 types of soups in Azerbaijan).
Tourists in Azerbaijan are recommended to pay attention to fish dishes from sturgeon, which is caught in the Caspian Sea.
In Azerbaijan, we advise you to try local soups (“shorba with chicken”, okroshka “ovdukh”, lamb soup “piti”), salads (“kukyu from greens”, “soyutma”, “bahar”), kebabs (mutton, chicken, from the liver), pilaf (more than 30 types), dolma, baklava, halva.
Most Azerbaijanis are Shia Muslims. But for some reason, religion does not prevent them from drinking alcohol. Apparently due to the fact that good wines and cognacs are made in Azerbaijan.
Azerbaijanis are very fond of tea. In the teahouse, men drink sweet black tea from small bowls. Tea is usually served with jam (from quince, figs, apricots, cherries and plums).
Another popular non-alcoholic drink in Azerbaijan is sherbet (sugar, lemon, mint, saffron, basil, cumin, etc. are added to boiled water).
Sights of Azerbaijan
According to official data, there are now more than 6,000 historical and architectural monuments in Azerbaijan. The top 10 best Azerbaijani sights, in our opinion, may include the following:
- Palace of the Shirvanshahs in Baku
- Mardakan fortress
- Mausoleum of Seyid Yahya Bakuvi in Baku
- Mosque of Muhammad ibn Abu Bakr in Baku
- Rock paintings of Gobustan
- Temple complex “Ateshgah” in the village of Surakhani
- Palace of Sheki Khans
- “Maiden Tower” in Baku
- Gyz-Galasy fortress in Shamakhi
- Mausoleum of Yusuf ibn-Kuseyir in Nakhichevan
Cities and resorts
The largest Azerbaijani cities are Ganja, Sumgayit, Lankaran, Mingachevir, Nakhichevan, Khirdalan, Khankendi, and, of course, Baku.
There are a lot of hot and mineral springs in Azerbaijan, which are concentrated in the mountainous part of the country. Thus, in Kelbajar alone there are about 200 mineral springs. The best mineral springs in Azerbaijan are Istisu (in Kalbajar), Badamli, Sirab (in Nakhichevan), as well as Darrydag, Turshsu, Arkivan, and Surakhani.
On the plains of Azerbaijan, in particular, in the Goranboy region, there is medicinal oil (it is called “naftalan”). Medicinal oil is widely used in medicine. Moreover, neftalan was found only in one place in the world – in the Goranboy region of Azerbaijan.
Tourists from Azerbaijan usually bring folk art products, carpets, ceramics, cognac, wine. Remember that in order to export any piece of art from Azerbaijan, even if it does not have artistic value, you need to obtain permission from the Azerbaijani Ministry of Culture.
Ukrainians do not need to apply for a visa to visit Azerbaijan (if the trip does not exceed 90 days).
Since 1992, the Azerbaijani manat (its international designation: AZN) has been in circulation in Azerbaijan. One Azerbaijani manat = 100 qapiks. Credit cards are accepted mainly only by prestigious hotels and restaurants in Baku.
Export of local currency from Azerbaijan is prohibited. The export of currency (we are talking, of course, about foreign currency) is limited to the amount that was declared upon arrival in the country.
Useful phone numbers and addresses
Address of the Azerbaijani Embassy in Ukraine:
Index: 01901, Kiev, st. Glubochitskaya, 24 T:
484-69-40 (city code – 044)
mail: [email protected]
Address of the Embassy of Ukraine in Azerbaijan:
AZ1069, Baku, st. Yusif Vezirova, 49
T: 449-40-95 (phone code of the country and city – +99412
) Email: [email protected]
102 – Police call
103 – Ambulance call
101 – Fire brigade call
The difference is +2 hours. Those. if in Baku, for example, it is 09:00 in the morning, then in Kyiv or, for example, in Donetsk, it is only 06:00 in the morning.
Tipping in Azerbaijan is welcome, but it is not obligatory.
No special vaccinations are required to enter Azerbaijan.
The level of violent crimes in Azerbaijan is low. However, in recent years, this country has seen a steady increase in crimes against foreigners. Often, even Azerbaijani police officers, threatening to take foreigners to the police station under far-fetched pretexts, demand a bribe.
Foreign tourists in Azerbaijan should take into account that the majority of the inhabitants of this country are Muslims.