Icheri Sheher Fortress – Baku Acropolis

ichery sheher5 - Icheri Sheher Fortress - Baku Acropolis

Icheri Sheher is a legendary place in Baku, since the capital of Azerbaijan originates from here. He is often visited in the framework of the tour of Azerbaijan. Near the sea, on a picturesque hill, there is an outstanding historical ensemble that received many majestic names, such as: « Baku Acropolis », « Inner City » or « Old Town ». And near there are museums, restaurants and hotels of Azerbaijan.

15th century for the history of Icheri Sheher became a turning point. At that time Baku became the capital instead of Shemakha, which gave rise to rapid construction. One of the main « pearls » was the Palace of Shirvanshahs.

We emphasize that in the 17-19th centuries the territory of Baku did not go beyond the margin of Icheri Sheher. Here were the palaces of the rulers and the usual quarters. The impetus for growth was given by the oil boom.

To date, Icheri Sheher has about 1,500 families. This quarter is the oldest in Baku. Populated it began in the Bronze Age. The excavations carried out showed that already in the 8th and 9th centuries this area was very densely populated. Here trade and handicraft business were well developed.

In 1977, Icheri Sheher was deservedly called a reserve of historical and cultural significance. And already in 2000, UNESCO made it a World Heritage Site. Somehow it reminds old cities, which can be seen during the rest in Uzbekistan.

The dilapidated fortresses saved a huge number of rare monuments that have become the property of the whole of Azerbaijan: the ancient residence of the Shirvanshahs, the « Maiden Tower », mosques, the famous sofa khan, the eastern caravanserais.

Special words are the buildings of the former fortress. Places for erection of buildings here simply did not suffice, from here and unique ensembles – they were under construction « wall to a wall ». Therefore, the courtyards are extremely small, they are separated by tiny streets, well, and, of course, gardens were not broken here. That’s why it’s especially fascinating to wander around here.

No less interesting is the fortress itself. Because of the rapid growth of the city, the once standing outer wall was destroyed. In her place were built houses. The inner wall remained intact with 25 towers and 5 gates. And this is only a small part of the architectural structures, since in the first half of the 20th century there were over 900 buildings here. Tour operators of Azerbaijan are advised to look here, if you find yourself in Baku.