Gobustan National Historical-Artistic Preserve (UNESCO heritage), Gobustan interactive Museum, Rock Petroglyph Site, Mud Volcanos, Bibi-Heybat Mosque, Ateshgah Fire Temple, Yanardag State Historical, Cultural and Natural Reserve
Have you ever seen where one of the first civilization has started? Seek no more, because Gobustan Historical-Artistic Preserve is exactly what you need! Included in the UNESCO heritage list, being one of the cradles of human civilization, Gobustan located barely one hour drive from Baku. It has an astonishing collection of over 6,000 ancient petroglyphs depicting the ways of life dating back as far as 40,000 years. Innovative technology will help you to get closer to the prehistoric times in Gobustan State Historical-Artistic Museum using its touch screens provided with special multimedia programs, educational and entertaining games, interactive displays, 3D video, etc.
Not far from Gobustan there is a second miracle that will amaze you no less than the prehistoric drawings on the rocks – these are Mud Volcanoes. NASA geologists have concluded that they are similar in structure to the hills on the planet Mars. Azerbaijan ranks first in terms of the number of mud volcanoes: 350 out of 800 mud volcanoes in the world are located here, one of which is listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the largest in the world.
On the way back to Baku you will stop next to the one of the most popular mosques in Baku. Built in the 13th century by Shirvanshah Farrukhzad II Ibn Ahsitan II, Bibi Heybat Mosque was completely destroyed by the Bolsheviks in 1936 and restored later in the end of the 20th century. It includes the shrine of Ukeyma Khanum (a descendant of the Prophet Muhammad) and today is the spiritual center for the Muslims of the region and one of the major monuments of Islamic architecture in Azerbaijan.
Let`s begin our adventure around mysterious “Land of Fire”! Our excursion will start with visiting Ateshgah Fire Temple in the village of Surakhani that for centuries has been attracting crowds of thrill seekers. Built in the 17th–18th centuries around naturally burning flames which were previously worshipped by Zoroastrians, the site then had become an important place of pilgrimage for fire-worshipping Hindus until the 1880s. Today it houses a well-designed open air museum.
And the final stop of our “fiery tour” is State Historical, Cultural and Natural Reserve Yanardag (literary “Burning Mountain”), a complex built around the hill located on the top of the natural gas pocket causing continuous flame eruption. Most probably the fire has been burning in Yanardag for over 20,000 years. These natural flames were described by Marco Polo in the 13th century and continue to mesmerize those who visit the site.
Transportation according to the program
Professional guide (English, Russian, Arabic)
Tickets to the museums (per person): Gala –7$ (compulsory), Ateshgah and Yanardag (combo ticket) – 6,50$ (compulsory), Gobustan Historical-Artistic Preserve & Museum – 9$ (compulsory)
Special off road transport to reach Mud Volcanoes – 9$ per car (4 pax) (compulsory)
Any tips at the sites
Pick-up time: 09:00
Pick-up / drop-off point: your hotel in Baku
The organizer reserves the right to change the order of the places to visit in case of necessity.