By Amina Nazarli
Azerbaijan’s beautiful capital of Baku, and the picturesque Georgian capital of Tbilisi, may become sister cities, according to Tbilisi Mayor David Narmania.
He expressed his hope that the capital of Georgia will sign a sistership agreement with Baku soon, adding that the sister city process is already underway.
“The negotiations have already been held and relevant documents have been prepared. I believe that in the near future, Tbilisi and Baku will sign a document to become sister cities,” he said.
Narmania highlighted various projects and investment programs to be carried out between the two cities. "We will pay special attention to the development of tourism. There are wide opportunities for that," he added.
Narmania went on saying that city officials would develop tourism in the regions where large Azerbaijani communities live. "We will first and foremost expand cultural infrastructures which contribute to the development of tourism in those regions," the Tbilisi Mayor added.
Baku, known as home to an ancient civilization dating back to 5500 BC, is a compact city in which visitors can easily walk around the city center to see most attractions, along with a mix of architecture.
The capital is the location where past and present are intricately intertwined, having always attracted tourists.
Sabail district is a central and ancient dwelling within Baku city, located along the Caspian Sea.
There are also monuments dating to ancient ages and medieval centuries within the district. Icherisheher, meaning Old City, is the most magnificent of the historical monuments in Azerbaijan and is included by UNESCO among the world cultural heritage items. The Shirvanshah palace complex, which is another astonishing state historical architectural museum-preserve, is its masterpiece.
The open-air museum, and Baku’s most majestic and mysterious monument - the Maiden Tower or Giz Galasi - is also located here. Built in the shape of a cylinder on the Caspian Sea shore, the Maiden Tower is a structure which, rather like a buttress, sticks out from the cylindrical tower on the sea side.
The Flame Towers, the tallest skyscraper in Baku at a height of 190 m, is also a beautiful symbol of the city.
Tbilisi is a city whose history goes back more than one thousand years.
The city is not only a stronghold of early Christianity, as the beautiful ancient churches indicate, but here also coexists different religious traditions. So, many mosques, synagogues and churches of various Christian denominations can be seen in Tbilisi.
Tourists can also spend many unforgettable hours walking along the charming streets of the old town and discovering its most hidden corners. It is also possible to visit the grand open-air museum or admire the wonderful panorama of the city while climbing the walls of the ancient Narikala fortress.
The main sights of Tbilisi are its cathedrals and churches, such as the Cathedral of the Holy Trinity, the Metekhi Church and Anchiskhati Basilica, the most ancient cathedral in the capital, built in the 6th century. The Dzhvarismama church from the 16th century and the Cathedral of Zemo Betlemi, built in the 18th century, are also among “must see” tourist sites.
Amina Nazarli is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @amina_nazarli
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