The historical center of Baku reveals its tumultuous past, from its roots as a Persian capital, through its oil boom to its Soviet occupation. The old city is a maze of alleys, mosques, historic buildings and remnants of fortification, including the Palace of the Shirvanshahs and the Maiden Tower, now listed among UNESCO's World Heritage Sites. Much more than a historic site, the city hosts vibrant arts and cultural activities, as well as a bustling modern business sector.
Azerbaijan (/ˌæzərbaɪˈdʒɑːn/ AZ-ər-by-JAHN; Azerbaijani: Azərbaycan [ɑzæɾbɑjˈd͡ʒɑn]), officially the Republic of Azerbaijan (Azerbaijani: Azərbaycan Respublikası [ɑzæɾbɑjˈd͡ʒɑn ɾespublikɑˈsɯ]), is a country in the South Caucasus region of Eurasia at the crossroads of Eastern Europe and Western Asia. It is bound by the Caspian Sea to the east, Russia to the north, Georgia to the northwest, Armenia to the west and Iran to the south. The exclave of Nakhchivan is bound by Armenia to the north and east, Iran to the south and west, and has an 11 km long border with Turkey in the north west.
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