Flaming mountains, mud volcanoes, azure ocean waters and a skyline that is as futuristic as it is reminiscent of a fortress are just some of the contradictions that are quintessentially Baku. In fact, almost every Baku travel guide will tell you about its striking mélange of styles and cultures, as Asian, European and Middle Eastern influences come together to create a truly exotic experience. However, it isn’t until you partake in local rituals such as drinking tea with strawberry jam that you’ll start to truly understand its unique blend of cultures.
As you walk down its streets, you’ll be left wondering if it’s the old-world charm or new age progress that lend Baku its magnetic appeal. Medieval-era fort walls serve as the perfect backdrop to swanky designer stores and international restaurant chain outlets – the perfect pitstops for tourists returning from sunbathing along the Caspian Sea.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Old City is dotted with several towering sites that transport you back in time to when the Old Silk road ran through the city. Modern-day vendors recreate the mood by calling you out to try their Beluga Caviar at the local bazaars, while just a few steps away, a Zorastrian temple, a miniature-sized book museum, and a mosque built in the 11th century, entice you to dive into the cultural melting-pot that is Baku.
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