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Nardaran, Abseron Yasaqligi - Azerbaijan - location mapLocated on the Absheron peninsula, 25 km north of baku, Nardaran is a quiet town built on a steep slope, near the town of Mashtaga (notice that there is another town called Nardaran, some 10 kilometres south of Siazan). In Soviet times it's prosperity stemed from a flower growing, but after independence most greenhouses were abandoned and the local economy has not yet recovered. To compensate for this Nardaran is home to a small fleet of sturgeon poachers. The fishermen survive from the illegal fishing of sevruga, osetra and the huge beluga sturgeon. They mostly fish within 12 miles of the beach during the cold season, suspending curtains of gillnet on the seabed 100 feet to 130 feet down. In the warm season they move to cool waters more than 300 feet deep.

The best known sight in Nardaran is its 14 th century castle, located in the northern extreme of town, with a round tower surrounded by walls. The construction inscription engraved the name of the master - Mahmud Ibn Saad. He built also the old Bibi Heibat and Molla Ahmad mosques in the Baku citadel. Near the castle you can enjoy a nice view of the Caspian. Also interesting is the small and very ruined caravanserai.

Azerbaijan - Nardaran - round tower at the castle / Nardaran qalasiNardaran is a labyrinth of dusty streets, Koranic slogans painted on the walls of the houses. It is a place of very strong islamic faith. Unlike elsewhere in Azerbaijan, it is not rare to see a woman wearing an Iranian style chador, the streets have a plethora of islamic slogans and the town has a large madrassa. The main mosque, dedicated Rehime Khanim, a wife of the 7th iman is an important pilgrimage destination for Shia muslims. There are several other mosques, the most imposing being the Aga mosque, with a castle style minaret and a beautiful blue dome.

To reach Nardaran from Baku you can take a bus or use the train till Mashtaga.

(25 km north of Baku)
see also: maps, Baku, Mardakan, Surakahny, Oil Rocks, Sumgait, summary, images, places
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