Great Silk Road In Azerbaijan

The Great Silk Road, or as it is called by modern scientists "Silk Routes", was a set of thousand different trade routes that were interconnected with each other. Playing an integral part in improving the trade exchange between the west and the east, it had been functioning for almost 15 hundred years. The Silk Road started as a way of goods exchange between Greece and China, but The Rome Empire and the territory that now belongs to Northern India also highly benefited from that trading roads. Stretched out for almost 4000 miles, its path started in China, the "destination" point being Antalya. From the first centuries B.C. every state through which the road passed was blessed with the colossal growth in both the cultural and economic aspects. The impact the Silk Road had on Azerbaijan is fascinating, the traces of it are bright as day even in modern times, and today we will discuss every aspect of it, such as:

1. The overall significance of Silk Road on Azerbaijan

2.Azerbaijani cities that has been a part of the routes

3. What Azerbaijan could offer for trade

4. Modern outcomes of the Silk Road on Azerbaijan


Tours In Azerbaijan
The Silk Road Map

1.Significance of the Route

Azerbaijan has always been an important point for the trading in the entirety of Caucasus region, but with the potential the Silk Road was holding the amount of traffic has skyrocketed. Not only Azerbaijan has been in the middle of one of the safest and the richest paths the Great Silk Road had to offer (even though the "Strabon" route, the huge portion of which was spanning across Azerbaijan, took more time to get to the destination point, it still was considered a secure passage), but also the territory of Azerbaijan was a treasure trove of resources and important household and cultural items. Even more so, Azerbaijan has been, metaphorically speaking, a certain door to the mystical and unusual to Europe's traders China.

Every big city on its way through Azerbaijan offered a safe rest for travelers and their animals, without the risk of being robbed out of your belongings by marauders. The power the Strabon route had on the cities would almost be unbelievable by nowadays metrics - the territories of crossing would grow in size and urbanization rapidly, almost immediately becoming a center of the region, where all the goods from the entire country would be brought to for a trade, people would try and move there for the chance of a better life. Economically thinking, it was a phenomenon that, to this day, played a crucial role even in Azerbaijan's modern situation.

2. Cities that were grazed by Silk Routes

The list of cities in Azerbaijan that at some point have been a part of the Silk Road routes is pretty impressive, including more than 10 big spots, that grew to be the country's centers throughout time, such as Barda, Derbent, Shemakha, Baku, Maragha, Ardabil, Tabriz, Ganja, Nakhichevan and etc. These cities were growing rapidly, becoming the heart of the trading inside the country and overall international deals with Europe and the East. Merchants from most countries, like Russia, Turkey and Central Asia, also considered Azerbaijan an important in-between spot on the road to rest and do most of the barter. It is also obvious from the pieces of architecture from those times, as well as some goods that have been found in Azerbaijan.

Almost in every city we have mentioned earlier we can find the traces of merchants' products, as well as caravanserais, which are the unique buildings that were considered hotels of that period of time. Sellers from all over the world would gather in caravanserais to rest and bring back their strength. And Azebaijan's cities provided the first-class service and safety to them. Even taking the Ganja's caravanserai in the consideration, we can see the magnificent two-story building, that combines the motifs of both Slavic and Eastern cultures, adding its own Azerbaijani cultural layer to it as well.

But we can say that without a doubt, the most popular caravanserai in Azerbaijan is located in the magnificent Sheki - a beautiful architectural masterpiece, built back in 18th century. To this day, tourists can stay inside of it and spend a night there, which can be one of the most interesting, thrilling and haunting at the same time experiences. Sheki in itself had happened to be playing such a crucial role in goods transportation, that it became a homeland to thousands of historic and cultural monuments. We can confirm that seeing Azerbaijan without experiencing the magic of Sheki doesn't feel complete and right, and we suggest using our help to get the most of this beautiful city on our Sheki Tour.

3. What was Azerbaijan trading?

Tours To Silk Road cities
The Sheki City

The territory of Azerbaijan has always been gifted in the natural aspects and resources, so it is obvious that during the Silk Road period, Azerbaijan actively participated in both buying and selling goods. More specifically, Azerbaijan has been quite popular with the quality of its metalwork, the masters excelling in regards of ceramic and wood works as well basic household utensils, oil, carpets, dried fruit, salt and jewelry. Being in close proximity to sea also granted the country the ability to sell sturgeons and caviar.

4. The imprints the Silk Road left on today's Azerbaijan

Sheki caravansai
Sheki caravansai

It is pretty obvious, how the strategic location Azerbaijan is in played a pivotal role in the Silk Routes. But we can not deny the amount of progress in handicrafts and craftsmanship in general Azerbaijan owes to the Silk Roads existence. The traces of this are still evident nowadays, as The Silk Road boosted the development of handicrafts, with Sheki still famous for its rich silk production.

Also, it is important to mention that Azerbaijan is stepping up as a key player in the modern Silk Road, also known as the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). By investing in infrastructure and promoting itself as a reliable transit hub, Azerbaijan is influencing the New Silk Road's development. This includes projects like the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway, creating a faster connection between China and Europe. This could not only boost its own economy but also solidify its position as a leader in Eurasian trade.

Its immaculate impact on various sides of economic growth and trading is evident and, in our opinion, Azerbaijan is a great spot to start learning the depth of that period of time. From the travelers' culture to goods traded on those roads - Azerbaijan has plenty of interesting stories to share and places to show. Especially with the help of Azerbaijan Travel International, that specializes in organizing tours to the number of regions, that have been parts of the Silk Routes, such as Shamakha-Gabala Tour or Gabala-Sheki Tours, we can guarantee you a positive experience and the best memories from your trip to the Land of Fire.

Tags: Shamakhi , Sheki , Shamakhi City , Great silk road

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