I arrived just in time at the bus station for my next ride and we moved to the airport, (22′ HUF=6 € shuttle bus to the airport). After half an hour, at 3 AM we got there. I had a smoke, passed security, bought a beer, (1400 HUF=4 €) at 3:30 when shops opened and then I went to the gate.

Budapest-Baku 1

Flight at 5 AM was first that day, with Wzzair (100 €) to Baku as a typical low-budget option. The airplane was packed, and I got the worst seat in the middle. Some mild turbulence on the way, and two short power naps of 15 min on a 3.5-hour flight.

At the airport I bought a SIM card from Azercell on arrival, 5 GB was 15 AZM=8 €. I had to pay at the bank. I rented a small car but got upgraded to KIA Rio. I paid 100 € with insurance for 3 days. Also, I gave them 100 € as a deposit. I had some problems contacting the guy that rented the car, but on the second attempt, we managed to find each other. The car was not in the best shape, bumped on all sides, and one light was turned on the dashboard, … I moved around Absheron peninsula before resting in a 5* hotel.

I rushed out of the airport not paying to park and didn’t check my way to my first destination so I had to make a turn. The first stop was at Golden Beach. On the way there police stopped me because GPS told me to turn left which is not allowed and I missed the sign, but I got out without a fine. I tried to swim in 13 degrees water of the Caspian Sea. Some locals looked strangely at me. I walked in shallow water for 2 minutes until I got to deep water. Beach itself looked deserted.

Then I drove to a burning mountain, Yanar Dag. I paid 9 AZM=5 € for entrance, many tourists. To see natural gas burning was nothing special. Ateshgah – Zarotostrian/Hindu fire temple was a better experience, 4 AZM=2 €. It was another eternal flame that had a temple around it since 300 AD after many reconstructions XIX. century 5 corner walled temple is now visible. They sold me 2 tickets and I returned one to get money for the extra ticket back. To the car, I walked in the shabby streets of Surakhani, as I didn’t park at the temple. I bought a bottle of water 0.7 AZM=0,4 €.

Haydar Aliyev Cultura Center is built without straight lines by architect Zaha Hadid. I had to cope with chaotic traffic to get to Lake Palace Hotel. It was just 29 € for a 5 + hotel, so those stars were not too bright, but still, it was a good price performance. FirstI took a shower at the hotel and laid down for an hour to rest a bit. After I visited a shop close by, spent 15 AZM=8 € on cigarettes, cookies, and bananas. I went with Bolt to the center, 5 AZM=3 €. Started my walk in an interesting old town with walls, but it was a bit tourist. The carpet museum has a great building. From there I walked on to the beach and to Deniz mall. In Coffeemania I took coffee, a big americano with hazelnuts and water. With tip, I paid 15 AZM=8 €.

It was time for some more walking, this time uphill. I found the Mexican restaurant Bierri. For dinner, I had “Birria” Quesadilla with veal 16 AZM, some jalapenos, and two beers 5 AZM, with tip I paid 25 AZM=13 €. The waiter would bring me a lighter for each cigarette. It was time to go home so another Bolt to hotel, 3 AZM=2 €. At 11h I was in bed after 2 days without sleep.

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