Siazan (Siyazan)
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Siazan (Siyazan) - Azerbaijan - location mapSiazan is the capital of a coastal rayon, located about 20 kilometres south of Davachi, on the main road and railway going from Baku to the border with Dagestan (Russian Federation). Some say its name originates in word for "black", Siiah, other believe the opposite - it comes from Farsi for 'White women', referring to the Tat inhabitants of the area. Part of the population it still Tat speaking.

Siyazan rayon, Azerbaijan: Besh Barmak / Bashbarmag - the Five Finger mountain - crag - near Namazkah - photo by G.MonssenThe town grew in the post-war period thanks to the oil fields discovered in 1940 in the nearby village of Ghil-Ghil-chay (the river Ghil-Ghil runs north of Siazan).

The town itself has a number of grey soviet building, including a large Palace of Culture, but outside you can find the remains of the ancient earth ramparts. According to legend, reflected in one of Nizami's poems, they were built Alexander the Great out of love for a local princess.

Siyazan rayon, Azerbaijan: Besh Barmak / Bashbarmag - the Five Finger mountain - view towards the Caspian sea - photo by G.MonssenBesides oil extraction there is also some agriculture, with water provided by a long irrigation canal running parallel to the Caspian coast, along the railway and road.

Siazan has been shaken by earthquakes throughout its history, the most recent in November 25th, 2000, had a magnitude of 6.3 points on the Richter scale, causing some material damage and a handful of injured people.

Outside the town you can enjoy the nature in Altyaghach National Park, which continues on along the south-eastern ridge of the Greater Caucasus chain to Xizi rayon.

Siyazan rayon, NE Azerbaijan: the Candy Cane mountains - pink and red candy stripes - photo by G.MonssenOn the coastal road from Baku you'll find one of Azerbaijan's most famous landmarks, the Besh Barmak, literally the 'five fingers' mountain. This is a hand shaped crag located near Namazkah, by the Caspian sea. You can climb to the top and enjoy a fantastic 360º view. This is also a place with religious traditions, as you'll notice by all the people praying and placing 'wish knots'.

Siyazan rayon, NE Azerbaijan: the Candy Cane mountains - road from Gilazi - photo by F.MacLachlanSiazan rayon is also known for the Candy Cane mountains, located on the road from Gilazi to Xizi. These offer a naked landscape with roundish hills displaying eroded pink and reddish sediments.

(100 km north of Baku)

see also: places, maps, Khachmas, Davachi, Quba, Xizi, Baku, summary, photos
A to Z of Azerbaijan / A dan Z ye Azerbaycan