Baku is a contemporary city filled with a fascinating history. Its seamless blend of East and West reflects itself in the local cuisine, culture, music, and people. Located 28 meters below sea level, this is the lowest-lying capital city in the world. It’s also the largest city on the Caspian Sea. And it’s the most exciting city in the Caucasus.
Baku is well accustomed to receiving travelers. Millennia ago, Zoroastrians ventured here to worship its extraordinary “eternal fires”. Still today the Ateshgah Fire Temple in Surakhani stands as an alluring reminder of Azerbaijan’s fire-worshipping heritage. This also inspired the incredible design of the Flame Towers, which symbolize modern Azerbaijani ambition and innovation.
Beneath them lies Baku’s historical core, Icherisheher, or the Old City. Wandering through this UNESCO World Heritage Site one hears its walls whisper the ancient mysteries of the city. Don’t be afraid to get lost in its labyrinth of alleys – they will take you to landmarks like the Maiden Tower and the Shirvanshahs’ Palace. And there you will discover some of the city’s many mysteries.
In the mid-19th century, Baku’s oil industry boomed and the city grew beyond these ancient fortress walls. Many people arrived in the city and some made enormous fortunes. They built opulent mansions and public buildings in a great mixture of styles, earning Baku the moniker of the “Paris of the Caucasus.” And now 21st-century masterpieces like the Heydar Aliyev Centre dominate the skyline. Baku really is a city of contrasts.
It is also a city of parks and promenades. These are peaceful escapes from the frenetic pace of modern city life and ideal for family travelers. The Baku Seaside Boulevard in particular is a must-visit place, offering hours of peaceful strolling with dazzling views at every turn. Here you will feel the true spirit of the Caspian. And you will be able to admire iconic structures like the Carpet Museum, Deniz Mall, and Crystal Hall.
There is plenty here too for business travelers and shoppers. A wonderful selection of contemporary malls, designer stores, local boutiques, and bazaars has everything you may need and more. There are hotels and meeting venues to suit all tastes and requirements. And the nightlife is vibrant and ever-changing. Baku is a city where business meets adventure.