The centre of Baku is the old town. It is also a fortrees.
In the old town you can see narrow alleys and ancient
buildings: the Palace of Shirvanshah, two
caravansarays, the 12th century Maidens Tower, the
baths and the Djuma Mosque. The town also has
dozens of small mosques. These places are among the
most visited sights in Baku.
ordinates: 40°21′58.20″N 49°5
Old City, Baku, Azerbaijan
29.5 m (97 ft)
Early sketch of Maiden
Tower which was built into
the walled defense system
The Maiden Tower is
built in the shape of a
cylinder near the shore
of the Caspian Sea.
The Maiden Tower was probably built at the same
time as the walls of Baku’s old city and shared
their purpose of defending the city.
The tower bears features common to the
defensive towers on the Absheron
peninsula - in Mardakan, Ramana,
Shuvalan and Nardaran. It does not really
have the features of temples, observatories
or watch towers.
The Maiden’s Tower is the symbol of Baku. The 32-meters Maidens Tower is one of
the beautiful and mysterious architectural monuments on The Absheron Peninsula. It has
8 floors. The walls are 4-5 meters thick . You can enjoy wonderful view of Baku from
here. There are a lot of legends about the Tower. From the top of the tower you can
see the inner city within the fortress walls.
Built in the 12th century, as
part of the walled city of
Baku, the Maiden Tower is
the historic monument
which has been inscribed
under the UNESCO World
Heritage List of Historical
Monuments as cultural
property in 2001. It is one of
the most noted landmarks
and Azerbaijan's most
The Maiden Tower
houses a museum,
which presents the
story of historic
evolution of the Baku
city. It also has a gift
shop. The view from
the roof takes in the
alleys and minarets of
theOld City, the Baku
Boulevard, the De
Gaulle house and a
wide vista of the Baku
Another notable structure seen in the tower is a water well of 0.7 metres (2.3 ft)
diameter, which is 21 metres (69 ft) deep (its depth is up to the aquifer) that
has been discovered at the second floor of the tower. This well has been
interpreted as rainwater harvesting structure and the water is said to be clean
and fresh (though close to the sea)
The legendary tale of the king willing to force his daughter to marry a
man she doesn't love, which she escapes by asking her father to first
build a tower for her, and when it is finished committing suicide by
jumping from the top of it has been the subject of many Azerbaijani
poems and plays. However, the ballet titled “Maiden Tower", was the
first Azerbaijani ballet composed by Afrasiyyab Badalbayli, in 1940.
This ballet is performed at Baku´s Opera and Ballet Theatre. However,
the story line is a modified version of the legend.
Palace of the
Shirvanshahs (or Shirvanshahs‘Palace; Azerbaijani: Şirvanşahlar
sarayı) is the biggest monument of the Shirvan-Absheron branch of
the Azerbaijan architecture, situated in the Inner City of Baku. The
complex contains :
1. The main building of the palace, Divanhane
2. The burial-vaults, the shah's mosque with a minaret
3. Seyid Yahya Bakuvi's mousoleum
4. A portal in the east - Murad's gate,
5. A reservoir and
6. The remnants of the bath-house.
The centre of Baku is the old town, which is
also a fortress. The walled city
of Baku(called "Icheri sheher" meaning
"Inner town") became in December
2000 the first location
in Azerbaijanclassified as World Heritage
Site by UNESCO
History and today
Icherisheher is very old city. It was built in 12th century
but some scientiests refer Icerisheher to 7th century.
Baku was divided into two sections: Icherisheher and
Today Icherisheher is historical place where tourists
from all over the world come to visit.
Since 2006 Azerbaijani 10 manat banknote has
Icherisheher picture on it.
Places in Icherisheher:
The Maiden Tower built in 12th century
as part of the walled city of Baku.
2. Place of the Shirvanshahs is the biggest
monument of the Shirvan-Absheron
branch of the Azerbaijan architecture.
3. Icherisheher is surrounded by huge fortress walls
from north, east and west. There are 5 entrance
doors to the city through the fortress walls.
The Juma (friday) mosque hosted for a long time the carpets museum, but is
now back to its original use. The building you can see today dates from the
early twentieth century, courtesy of an oil baron, but stands over the
remains of preceding buildings.