INFORMATION ON HISTORICAL AND CULTURAL MONUMENTS OF BAKU CITY
The ancient city of Baku has numerous historical and architectural monuments dating to various historical epochs.
The Old City of Icheri Sheher occupies 22 hectares in the centre of Baku. It hosts over 50 historical and architectural monuments from various eras. The Palace of Shirvanshakhs, the Maiden Tower and Synyg Gala (The Broken Tower) are among the monuments which survived till the present day.
The Palace of Shirvanshakhs is one of the pearls of Azerbaijani architecture. It was built at the beginning of the 15th century. It includes a historical complex, the palace, a divankhana, the Shirvanshah's room, a palace mosque with minarets, bathhouse, a room of Seyid Yahya Bakuvi, and the Western divankhana monuments, which were built during a later stage. The complex construction began in 1441, while the Western divankhana was completed by architect Amirshah in 1558.
Azerbaijan's unique architectural monument - the Maiden Tower - is located in the south-western part of the Icheri Sheher. The tower was built in two stages. Its bottom part with a height of 13.7 meters is dated by most experts to the 7th -6th centuries BCE. The Maiden Tower has a total height of 29.7 meters, with a diameter of 16.5 meters. The wall thickness in the bottom part is 5 meters, reducing to 4 meters at the top. The tower consists of 8 tiers and has 21-meter deep water well.
The present structure was built approximately in 1713 AD, and the building of the central stone shrine was funded by merchant Kanchanagaran in 1810. Another interesting sight in Baku is the Ateshgah temple, situated in the south-western part of the Surakhani settlement in the Absheron peninsula, 30 km away from Baku. Ateshgah is a fire temple, built in the XVII-XVIII centuries. The temple's central stone shrine is located on a natural gas pocket.
One of the most ancient and exciting monuments of Baku is Gobustan, famous around the world for its rock carvings. It has numerous rock carvings, camps, dwelling places, tomb monuments and other sights of the stone period. Gobustan is located in the Boyukdash, Kichikdash, Yindirdagh, Sondardagh and Shixgaya mountains. The monuments dating from the mesolite to middle ages can be found in the territory of Boyukdash.
Besides, there are two ancient towers in the Mardakan settlement of Baku. The one with a quadrangular form was built in the 12th century by Akhsitan, the son of Shirvanshah Mechehrin. This tower was erected on occasion of Akhsitan's victory over his enemies. The tower has a height of 22 meters. The wall thickness in the bottom part is 2.60 meters, reducing to 1.60 meters at the top. The insides of the tower are divided into five tiers.
The second tower has a rounded shape and is known as Shikh Tower among the local population. This tower has a height of 12.5 meters. Its inner part consists of 3 circles. The inscription on the tower wall reads that it was built by the architect Abdulmejid Masud in 1232.