Have I ever thought about coming to Azerbaijan? Have I realized that I could live in this country for a month and a half? The answer is no.
I have never wanted to travel to this country as a tourist. I have always dreamed of visiting France or Italy, but not actually Azerbaijan.
When I was in the airport and waiting for the flight I didn’t have expectations at all. I didn’t understand what was happening to me. Just wanted to believe that everything would be fine.
So I want you to see my expectations and reality about this country. Let’s start with the reasons why I didn’t want to come to Baku and how I changed my mind about Azerbaijan.
Firstly, there are lots of stereotypes about Azerbaijan in my country. In the majority, they are not good at all. Many of my friends mentioned that people (especially men) are very unpredictable and wild in this country. They can be dangerous, so you had better be careful. Men can be obsessed with Russian girls. So there is a high probability not to return home (if you a woman)
I can ensure you that there is the truth about half of it. Really when you come to Baku you will be shocked at the huge amount of attention. Men always stare at you if you cross the street or pass by them. They can talk to you, shout something or even try to get acquainted with you. But you can make advantages from it. Not all of this kind of guys are bad. The majority of them are really interesting and open-minded guys which can show Azerbaijan and open the country from a different side!
Getting acquainted with a native person will give you many opportunities, for example, to try the traditional food (which is really tasty and delicious!), find the hidden gems in this magical city and explore traditions and culture of the country.
People here are very helpful and sympathetic. You also can’t believe it! Everybody wants you to be pleased and not to be in need with something. If you don’t know the way, they can lead you to the bus, pay for it and even go with you to be sure that you will find the right direction. In the shop, they can give you a banana for free and invite to their village in order to show you all the hospitality at their house.
Secondly, it is the east mentality. You can be scared of the women in hijab crossing the street, rigid traditions and customs and impossibility to wear shorts and cropped tops. Actually, the fact about clothes is true. It is better not to wear open clothes and too short shorts. If you follow these rules, everything will be fine. Besides, the Muslim women have something secret and magic in their way of life. I fell in love with it, really! They build the unique atmosphere of this country, which gives you desire to explore it more.
The third reason can be the fact that Azerbaijan was in the Soviet Union. If you are from Russia, you may predict that there is nothing to see in this country. The question is that all of the countries which were the part of USSR, are the same. I reckon it is the main reason why Russian people don’t want to visit this place. But I can swear you the country is worth to visit. You will be pleased with the architecture that has the special spirit here. I really like the colours of this country! When you walk through the city your mind is captured with east charm. Cats are waiting for you everywhere. The smell of spices, pakhlava ( kind of dessert pastry ) and hot stupefy you.
I can say that Baku nights are one of the most exciting things that happened to me. Lightened skyscrapers, the colour of traditional restaurants, the beauty of Boulevard makes you crazy.
To sum up, I really recommend you visiting this country! I fell in love with it and if I get a chance to move here in the future, I will definitely use this opportunity!