Is it Europe? Or is it Asia? The enigmatic nation of Azerbaijan is a land that defies neat categories, and has to rate as one of the more unusual countries on the Eurasian landmass.
Our group tours and tailor made holidays to Azerbaijan show you a land that is a curious mixture of the ancient and modern, with oil wealth giving rise to a capital where skyscrapers can be seen from medieval fortresses, and donkeys battle with luxury vehicles for dominance on the streets.
It is these contradictions in the material world as well as the culture of the Azeri that make visiting Azerbaijan so interesting for the intrepid traveller.
It is not without reason that Azerbaijan is often known as the ‘land of fire’ – visit flaming mountains alight with underground gases and witness the bizarre spectacle of hot mud belching from the bowels of the earth.
Azerbaijan isn’t all about odd natural phenomena though – with a rich heritage and a culture that borrows from Iran, Russia and everywhere in between you can lose yourself in old palaces, unique temples and ancient churches, all the time welcomed by the friendly smiles of the Azeri people.
Azerbaijan is brimming with history, is fiercely modern, and is unlike anywhere else you will have visited.
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Why visit Azerbaijan?
A fascinating mix of the old and the new, with influences from all along the Silk Road combined with decades of Soviet rule make Azerbaijan one of the most curious destinations you could visit. The capital, Baku is a modern city that is a mix of Dubai, Vienna and Las Vegas. High end designer shops, supercar show rooms and wide boulevards lined with cafes hide the old centre of the city. Now well known for its Formula 1 race that hurtles through the streets of Baku, if you travel only twenty minutes outside of the capital, it is like travelling back in time.
Once you have travelled out from the glitz and glamour of Baku, you begin to see the real Azerbaijan. You may only have travelled ten or twenty miles but the distance could well have been thousands of miles.
Passing the miles and miles of nodding donkeys that produce the oil that has fuelled the economic boom of Baku, your first stop should be the fire-worshippers temple of Ateshgah. At various times throughout history this was a shrine for Zoroastrians, Hindus and Sikhs.
Another must see in Azerbaijan is Khan’s Palace in Sheki, a summer residence for the Shaki Khans and now a UNESCO World Heritage site. Beautifully restored by local craftsmen, a walk around the building and grounds allows you to see up close the intricate designs throughout.
Azerbaijan may be known for its capital and car racing, but look a little further afield and you will find a country full of history, culture and a legacy of the Silk Road.
Why travel with us?
- Small Group Tours with a Maximum of 12 People
- Tailor-made Tours and Private Tour Options
- Expert Advice and First Hand Knowledge