By Arzu Abdullayeva
Guba, one of the most beautiful and landscape region of Azerbaijan, is located in 168 kilometers from Baku. Well-known for its carpets, mesmerizing scenery, ancient history, and delicious cuisine, especially sweets, the city is very popular among tourists. Beautiful architectural and historical monuments can be found in this mesmerizing city.
Guba hamam is a unique place to visit. Celebrated French author, Alexandre Dumas, himself visited the old hamam when he was traveling through the region. The hamam is no longer in use but it offers an interesting stop on any tour.
The city is well-known for cultivating the most delicious apples in Azerbaijan and is often called the "apple orchard" for 40 different varieties of apples that grow only here. In the autumn, the best varieties of apples are carefully collected in boxes and sent not only to the domestic market, but also exported to the nearest countries. Azerbaijani farmers collect more than 100,000 tons of apples annually.
Apples became symbol of the city, it is dedicated to the sculpture at the entrance to the city, and an annual festival is also hold in honour of it, which attracts both local and foreign tourists. At the festival, miscellaneous varieties of apples are presented, fruits can be tasted and bought. The apples are taken home with baskets. Farmers are even ready to give their products to guests. Despite the fact that the area receives tourists all year round, most visitors come just in the harvest season of apples.
Guba carpets of intricate designs are also worth for a trip. All are notable for their vivid colors. When it comes to patterns, nature and geometric patterns are essential feature of these carpets. As the carpets represent any city’s or country’s ancient cultural life, in order to draw attention back to the art of carpet weaving, carpet workshops are being held in the city.
There are a number of mosques in the city. Juma Mosque, for instance, is one of the ancient ones in the city. The Mosque was erected in the 19th century. Inside the mosque there is a big hall crowned with a huge 16 m diameter dome. Another ancient mosque, Sakina-Khanum Mosque was built in 1864 by the widow of Abbasgulu Bakikhanov. The mosque amazes with its monumentalism. It was built from red bricks and is similar to faceted cylinder. From top this building is crowded with a big white metal dome in the shape of a multi-faceted helmet.
Khinaliq, being 2,350 m above sea level, is the highest village in Azerbaijan. Interesting fact about the village is that it was isolated from the rest of the world almost for its entire history. This occurrence led to unique stone buildings and a language spoken nowhere else. Khinaliq makes up a large part of the cultural milieu in the city’s history. With history of over 5,000 years, the village is among the most ancient places in the world. Due to the high altitude, it managed to survive many invasions. The place can be considered as one of the birthplaces of civilization.
Afurca Waterfall is surely becoming one of the most visited destinations both by local and foreign tourists in recent years. Afurca Waterfall is located in the south part of Guba. The height of the fall is about 75 m. The waterfall is regarded by many as one of the most beautiful monuments have ever been created by nature. Its spectacular view is a privilege to have.