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Nakhchivan: Fantastic tourist attractions and unique sights

01 August 2017 [10:00] - TODAY.AZ

By Azernews

By Laman Ismayilova

Nakhchivan, the land of the ancient Azerbaijan, is one of the places of civilization and cultural centers in the world.

This beautiful place has plenty of fantastic tourist attractions and unique sights to offer. Visitors from all over the world travel to this wonderful land to see architectural treasures and fascinating places of natural beauty.

The geographical position, unique climate, fauna and flora, and the ancient cultural monuments of the Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic lead the auspicious development of tourism. 

Talking about tourism potential of Nakhchivan, Culture and Tourism Minister Abulfaz Garayev said that the coordination of travel companies is one of the important tasks ahead.

“I am absolutely sure that we will be able to present Nakhchivan as the capital of Islamic culture to the world community,” he said. “The announcement of Nakhchivan as the capital of Islamic culture and the organization of a number of events confirm how strong Azerbaijan's position in the Islamic world is.”

The capital of Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic, Nakhchivan city is situated on the Nakhchivan River Embankment, very close to the Iranian border, and 536 km away from Baku.

However, a folk legend says the city takes its beginning from Noah’s time, and Noah himself laid a foundation of the city after the Flood. There is Noah’s Mausoleum preserved in the southern part of the city. A temple once stood here, but unfortunately, it was destroyed, and the Mausoleum that people can visit today occupies the lower floor of the destroyed temple. There are names of pilgrims who once visited this place engraved upon the walls of this unique monument.

The splendid 12th-century Momine Khatun mausoleum, which is the city's icon, is perhaps the finest single antique monument in Azerbaijan. Built in 1186 by Acami Abubakiroglu Nakhchivani above a vaulted crypt it sits on a shallow base made of large blocks of red diorite. A flat roof raised on a tapering, decagonal drum covers the slightly pointed inner dome.

The extraordinary view of the Alinjagala (Alanjik) fortress attracts many foreign visitors. The fortress, which is perceived as a symbol of strength and military strategy, for centuries has been a critical geostrategic castle.

The walls of the fortress begin from the slopes of the Alinja Mountain and rise until fully embracing the top of the mountain. Its foundations were built of big stones and burned bricks brought from the nearby villages.  

Fortress is on the top of the mountain of the same name, on the right bank of Alinjachay, Julfa region. In the oldest sources it is written in many versions such as "Erinjag", "Erinjik", "Alanjik", "Alinja", and "Alanjug".

There are different assumptions about the construction date of the castle. Some historians think that it is 2,000-year castle. Alinja is depicted as strong fortress in "Kitab-i Dada Gorgud" epos.

The remainders of the beautiful palaces and buildings belonging to the feudals in the Alinjagala were depicted in the literature of the XIX century. It was possible to keep a herd of horses and cattles before and other military ammunition in the fortress. In the rein of Atabaylar-Eldagizlar dynasty in the territory of Azerbaijan, the importance of the Alinjagala rose turning the place a shelter for the security of the rulers’ families, which was considered the most strategic military fortification.

In accordance with the Decree of the Chairman of the Supreme Assembly of Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic on February 11, 2014, "On the restoration of historical monument Alinjagala", the castle was restored and granted a status of historical and cultural museum-reserve.

The region abounds with historical monuments, including ancient Gamigaya, Farhad house, Ajhabi-Kahf, Yusuf ibn Kuseyr tomb,Tomb of the Gulistan, Khanagah tomb, Qazanchi bridge, Nakhchivan Juma Mosque, and Qesariyya monument.

Nakhchivan’s main attraction for tourists today is the therapeutic salt caves of Mount Duzdag located at a height of 1,173 meters above sea level. Those who suffer with respiratory disease find great results of treatment procedures here.


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