Ancient Caucasian Albania
Duration: 8 days / 7 nights.
In ancient times in the territory of modern Azerbaijan was the state of Caucasian Albania, whose official religion since the IV century was Christianity. In the VIII century, it was captured by the Arabs, after which the Islamization of the population began.
Christianity appeared on the land of Azerbaijan back in the apostolic times. According to tradition, the first preachers there were the holy apostle Bartholomew (here also martyrs who died) and the disciple of the apostle Thaddeus – Elisha, whom the local tradition calls the apostle of Albania.
Based on this, Albanian-Christian churches have settled down throughout the territory of Azerbaijan since ancient times. Among them there are monuments of ancient Christianity, as well as existing Orthodox churches.
Arrival in Baku. A meeting. Transfer to the hotel. Accommodation.
Sightseeing tour around Baku, which ends in Icheri Sheher, Old Town. This is an ancient monument of antiquity. On the territory of Icherisheher there are ancient baths, mosques, the complex of the Shirvanshahs Palace, the Caravanserai and the Maiden Tower (UNESCO monument), at the foot of which there is the place of execution of the apostle from 12, a disciple of Jesus Christ, Bartholomew who brought to the land of ancient Azerbaijan (ancient Name-Albania) Christianity and suffered an excruciating death at the hands of the Gentiles. The viewing platform with the Maiden Tower overlooking Icheri Sheher.
Lunch at a restaurant with national cuisine.
Excursion “Evening Baku” and “Great Boulevard”. Guests will see the beauty of urban architecture of the city, drowning in the evening lights. Walking along the evening boulevard along the sea line will leave an amazing impression of one of the most beautiful seaside parks.
Dinner at the hotel. Night.
Visit to the Cathedral of the Myrrhbearers.
The building was built in 1909 with the support of the prominent son of the Azerbaijani people, patron of Haji Zeynalabdin Tagiyev and private donations of believers. In the Soviet period, the temple was closed one of the first in 1920. The cathedral got its second life thanks to the attention and support of the Azerbaijani philanthropist and entrepreneur Aydin Samedovich Kurbanov. In the temple is
Ark with a particle of St. The relics of the Apostle Bartholomew, the patron saint of the city.
Liturgy, prayer for the pilgrims.
Lunch at the restaurant.
Visit to the Cathedral of Archangel Michael for the evening service.
Acting Temple of Archangel Michael.
The oldest surviving temple in the city. Previously, the church was among the military.
The temple building originally belonged to the Caspian fleet, and the church was called Fleet.
Visit to Yanardag (burning mountain), where you can see an amazing
catcher-flame, covering the foot of the mountain for several millennia!
Dinner at the hotel. Night
Visit to the Nativity of the Virgin Cathedral for the evening service.
The temple consists of two limits: the Nativity of the Virgin and St. Sergius of Radonezh
The building of the temple of the basilic type. The author of the project is unknown.
Excursion to Gobustan-museum in the open air, where the first parking of a person was found at Absheron.
Near Gobustan one can see one of the wonders of nature-mud volcanoes, the largest
Some of which are concentrated in Azerbaijan from all available on Earth.
On the way back lunch in a fish restaurant by the sea.
Dinner. Overnight at the hotel.
Departure to the city Gabala.
This is the most beautiful corner of Azerbaijan with a rich and ancient history. When this city (Kabala) for 600 years was the capital of Caucasian Albania. And to this day the ruins of the ancient city and the main gates of the Caucasian Albania are preserved here. Archaeological excavations conducted near the village of Chukhur Gabala confirm that Gabala, starting from IV-III BC. Until the XVIII century was one of the major cities with developed trade, the center of crafts. In the city of Gabala, the first capital of ancient Azerbaijan.
Excursion to the village of Nidzh. In this village there live direct descendants of ancient Albanian-Udins. They are unique in that they were able to preserve their identity and Christian religion.
In the village of Nij there is a unique architectural monument of the Caucasian Albania – the Udi temple. This Albanian temple “Jotari” is the most significant historical monument of the village of Nij. The Albanian-Udi Church, founded by the holy prophet Elisha, was one of the first centers of Christian propaganda in Caucasian Albania (I-II centuries).
Acquaintance with the life of the udins.
Lunch at the Udi cafe. Dishes of national Udinese cuisine.
Walk around the village.
In the evening, check-in at the hotel.
Dinner. Overnight at the hotel.
Breakfast. Departure to Sheki.
Sheki district is one of the most interesting, original and beautiful areas of Azerbaijan . The administrative center of the district is the city of Sheki, one of the oldest cities in Azerbaijan, located on the picturesque southern slopes of the Greater Caucasus Mountains against the backdrop of snowy peaks.
Sheki is a large craft center. In the vicinity of the city there are many historical monuments.
These are towers, fortresses, mausoleums, as well as the first Albanian Christian churches. Among them is the very first Christian temple of the 1st century AD. Century in the village of Kish.
Excursion to the village of Kish. Ancient Albanian temple-mother of all Albanian churches.
During the heyday of the Christian religion in this territory, the Temple was very visited, but was later abandoned and just miraculously survived to our times.
One of the wonders of the Albanian basilica is the wall located at the base of the altar. As a rule, a person coming here makes a wish and attaches a coin to the wall. According to the belief, if it sticks, then the desire will necessarily be fulfilled.
Lunch at a cafe next to the temple.
Excursion to the Palace of the Sheki Khan (optional, at the request of tourists)
Departure to Gakh.
Gakh is located at the mountain foot of the Greater Caucasus. The name of the city is translated as “fortress.”
At the beginning of our era, the process of spreading Christianity began in the territory of Caucasian Albania. During this period, many temples were built in the Gakh district . Gakh district is rich in historical monuments of culture and architecture. There are 56 architectural monuments on the territory of the district,
On the road Gakh on the mountain adorns the ancient church of Kyurmyuk, built in the 5th century.
This is one of the most beautiful places of pilgrimage. The temple itself is located on a cliff face, and the view opens from there stunning. And if you look at this gothic work of art from below, you can not help recalling tales from childhood, about castles on the tops of mountains and dragons.
There is a tradition that a person who wishes a wish should leave a candle on this ancient, like the temple itself. Some pilgrims make a wish, and in tribute to his execution they pass all the way from the foot of the mountain to the temple on foot, and barefoot.
Arrival in Gakh. Hotel accommodation. Free time, dinner. Night
Excursion to the Georgian church of George the Victorious.
Trip to Ilisu.
The village of Ilisu (Kakhsky region of Azerbaijan) is located in a picturesque place on the mountainous, overgrown with thick forest, slopes, at an altitude of 1200 meters above sea level. In this place two beautiful mountain rivers Kurmukh-tea and Ag-tea merge. Their gorges are deep, the rivers are very turbulent. Here pass ancient caravan trails through the Main Caucasian Range to Dagestan. Ilisu is a favorite tourist destination.
Not far from the village there is a picturesque Fizuli Garden and a waterfall. In the quarter of Bujag, there is the legendary fortress “ Sumuh “, where the once well-known movie “ Do not be afraid – I’m with you “. In Ilis, there were also watchtowers (XVI-XVII c.), old bridge “ Ulu “, a mosque of the 18th century, an ancient Muslim cemetery nearby With a mosque. At the top of the mountain the fortress “Shamilgala” was preserved.
In Ilis nature does what many doctors can not do: almost any patient who has spent here 1-2 months can be healed of many, and In the first place, chronic ailments. And healthy people enjoy truly unearthly beauties.
Residents of the old village, which gave the name of the whole area, joke that if a contest for a place for heaven on Earth was announced, then Ilis would have a very decent chance of winning. However, let’s not forget that in every joke there is only a joke – everything else is true …
Lunch at a local restaurant. Free time.
Walk through the evening Gakh.
Dinner Overnight at the hotel.
Trip to the village of Lekit. Monastery complex Yeddi Kilsya (Seven churches) – Located at the highest northern point of the village, in the forest near the road. The monastery was called “Yeddy Surrender” because it consists of 2 basilicas and 5 small chapels.
In the village of Gum visit the Basilica. The temple in Gum – The temple is located in the center of the village of Gum, on the shore of a small mountain river. This Christian temple is a work of art that attracts specialists with its architectural and constructive solution.
The walls of the temple are erected from the river stone of blue and dark green color. In some places of construction, a square burned brick was used. A similar combination of brick and stone was present in the structures of the Caucasian Albania, dating back to the 1st century.
Visit the Shaggy Falls of Mamyrly. Inside the waterfall there is a small cave. There are practically no analogues or even similar waterfalls in the world, and therefore this waterfall is included in the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Lunch in nature.
Departure to the city of Ganja.
Arrival. Accommodation at the hotel.
Free time, city tour, tea-party in tea-house, dinner, night at the hotel.
Breakfast. Visit to the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral.
The church was built in 1887 on the site of an ancient cemetery for charitable funds, both local Orthodox and Muslims. The building was built in Byzantine style from brick “plinfy”.
Divine Liturgy, Moleben.
Transfer to the airport in Ganja. Flight to Moscow.