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Mardakan
 
Mardakan

Located on the Apsheron peninsula (Abseron Yasaqligi) north-east of Baku, Mardakan is a small town of flat roofs, named after the ancient tribe of the Mards.
During the summer the town is popular with the inhabitants of Baku who own or rent dachas in the area, you can see also some old mansions some of which are now used as sanatoria.

Mardakan's main attraction is its castles . There are two of them, one with a round tower, and a larger one with a square tower. The larger castle dates from the 14 th century and is immediately visible as you approach Mardakan, although it is not built on a hill. This tower is about 25 m tall and has five floors. Within the walls there is a well and receptacles hewn from the rock for storing grain.

Near the castle is the 15th century Tuba-Shakha mosque , containing an exhibition dedicated to the castles in the Apsheron peninsula. The smaller castle was built in the 13 th century and its design is similar to that of the Ramana castle (between Baku and the airport): a round central tower surrounded by a wall. An inscription names Abdulmajid Ibn Masud as the architect. (there is a fourth castle at Nardaran ).



jpg> Located halfway between the two castles are the old baths. Have a look also at the Heydar Mosque! The town is served by a theatre and also has a cultural centre (named after Nizami).
Mardakan is quite spread eastwards, merging at the railway with Shuvelan , know for the mausoleum of Aghanin, a semi-holly deformed man. Today the mausoleum is visited by many pilgrims to thank or ask for miracles. Have a look at the mirror mosaic. The new madrassa is also worth a brief stop.

From Baku the best way to reach Mardakan and Shuvelan is the train, that continues till the beach. There are also several buses and minibuses. Mardakan's beach (Sahil beach) is on of the best in the Apsheron peninsula.

Luxury accomodation is available at the Khazar Golden Beach Hotel & Resort , built right at Sahil beach.

East of Mardakan is the small coastal island of Pirallakhi , with the small setlement of Artyom. Further east is Chilov island.


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