On our way back from Shamakhi to Baku, we decided to stop and have a look at the Diri Baba Mausoleum-Mosque. It’s located very close to the highway and there’s a road leading straight to the foot of the Mosque which was a blessing since one of our kids was sleeping and I didn’t want to wake her up in case we had to hike our way up to this landmark. The road winds around an old cemetery and just when you start thinking that you’re probably in the wrong place, you see it! The mosque is built high into the rock and looks like it’s suspended in the air. A broken, yet solid, staircase leads to its entrance.
There is no entrance fee and you can walk around and climb to the very top of the rock from where you can better see the terrain around you. There’s a very narrow staircase inside, leading you to the top. I admit, I had my doubts whether I’m willing to climb it (it’s so narrow!), but I’m glad I did. (That wind though… the sound of it makes you feel like in a Gothic novel.)
There were absolutely no other people at the time of our visit, which really helped us to feel the atmosphere of the place. The Tomb blends perfectly with the landscape around it, and is well-maintained and clean. The solid cold walls, semi-dark staircases, narrow passages and the whistling of the wind inside seem to take you back to the beginning of the 15th century when the mosque was built (1402) by “the son of master Gaji”. As one can imagine, there’re many legends connected to this mystical place. The most popular one is that the Saint Diri-Baba was buried there and remained imperishable. There’s a very small entrance leading to the cave in which the Saint was buried. (And no, I didn’t dare to go there.)
It’s a breathtaking structure of history, which is worth seeing if you’re traveling near that region of Azerbaijan.
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