The Double Gates of Baku, also known as the Baku Old City Gate, is a historical and cultural landmark located in the heart of Azerbaijan’s capital city which is also named Gosha Gala in the Azerbaijani language. The gates, which date back to the 12th century, have played a significant role in the city’s fortifications throughout history and have been well-preserved as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In this blog post, we will explore the rich history, cultural significance, and current state of the Double Gates.
The History of the Double Gates of Baku
The Double Gates of Baku has stood at the entrance of the Old City for centuries, serving as a formidable barrier against invaders. The gates were constructed in the 12th century during the reign of the Shirvanshahs, a medieval dynasty that ruled over the region. Throughout the centuries, the gates have undergone several renovations and restoration efforts, with the most recent taking place in the 1990s. Today, the Double Gates of Baku is considered one of the most important historical landmarks in Azerbaijan.
Cultural Significance of the Old City Gate
The Double Gates of Baku hold a special place in the hearts of Azerbaijanis, representing the country’s rich history and cultural heritage. The gates have been the site of many important events throughout history and have been depicted in Azerbaijani literature and art. The Old City of Baku, where the gates are located, was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2000, in recognition of its historical and cultural importance.
Exploring the Surrounding Area. What to See Near the Double Gates?
A Walk through Baku’s Double Gates: The Old Town of Baku is a great place to explore on foot, with narrow streets and staircases lined with traditional houses. The Double Gates of Baku serve as the perfect starting point for a walk through the city’s historic neighbourhoods. Visitors can explore the winding streets, visit the many museums and landmarks, and immerse themselves in the local culture.
The Old Town of Baku is home to many other historical landmarks and museums, including the Palace of the Shirvanshahs, the Juma Mosque, and the Maiden Tower. Visitors can also explore nearby areas such as the Old City’s main street, Icheri Sheher, which is lined with shops and restaurants, as well as Baku Boulevard, a popular waterfront promenade.
The Architecture of the Double Gates of Baku
The Gates of Baku are constructed of stone and feature intricate carvings and sculptures. The gates are decorated with inscriptions in Arabic script, which tell the story of the Shirvanshahs and the history of the city. The architectural style of the gates is a blend of Eastern and Western influences, reflecting the city’s history as a crossroads of cultures. At the top of the gates, it is possible to see 2 Lions and 1 bull sign which used to be the emblem of the Shirvanshahs Dynasty.
The lion and bull sign on the Double Gates of Baku is believed to be a symbol of power and strength. The lion, a symbol of power, courage, and royalty, is often associated with kings and rulers and is considered to be a symbol of protection and strength. The bull, on the other hand, is a symbol of fertility, strength, and virility. Together, the lion and bull symbolize the power and strength of the rulers who built and protected the city and also represent the city’s ability to sustain and protect its citizens. Some historians believe that the lion and bull symbols were used to ward off evil spirits and to bring good luck to the city and its inhabitants.
A Guide to Getting There:
The Double Gates of Baku are easily accessible by public transportation, with the nearest metro station being just a short walk away. Visitors can also reach the gates by bus or minibus, or by car or taxi. The gates are also within walking distance of many of the city’s top attractions.
- By Public transportation: The nearest metro station to the Double Gates of Baku is Icheri Sheher station, which is located on the Red Line. From there, visitors can take a short walk to the gates. Additionally, several bus and minibus routes also pass near the Double Gates.
- By Car: If you are travelling by car, you can park in the nearby parking lot and walk to the Double Gates.
- By Taxi: Taxis are widely available in Baku, and it’s a convenient way to reach the Double Gates. You can ask the driver to take you to the Old City Gate, or simply provide the address: Aziz Aliyev Street, (Gosha Gala Gapisi)
- By Walking: If you are staying in the city centre, you can easily walk to the Double Gates. The Old Town is a great place to explore on foot, and the Double Gates are a great starting point for a walk through the city’s historic neighbourhoods.
The Current State of the Double Gates of Baku:
The Double Gates of Baku are well-maintained and open to visitors daily. Guided tours are available, providing visitors with an in-depth look at the history and cultural significance of the gates. The gates are also a popular spot for photography, with visitors able to capture stunning shots of the gates and their surroundings.
In conclusion, The Double Gates of Baku is a must-see attraction for visitors to Baku. The gates are a symbol of the city’s rich cultural heritage and a beautiful example of medieval architecture. With its historical context, cultural significance and current state of the monument, the Double Gates of Baku should be on the top of the list for any traveller visiting Azerbaijan. The nearby areas are also worth visiting and exploring, which makes the whole experience of visiting the city even more complete.