Gobustan – Rock-Art Cultural Landscape


Gobustan – State Historical – Cultural Preserve is 537 ha hill and mountain site featuring rich cultural landscape with great abundance of ancient cave paintings, occupying the territories between the southeast end of the Greater Caucasus mountain ridge and Caspian Sea. Rock engravings discovered in the territory of preserve largely portray the life and faith in life. Gobustans petroglyphs dates back to 18-17 centuries BC; studies show, primitive life in Gobustan, continued some tens of thousands years. Cavemen who inhabited Gobustan since Stone Age, were hunting, gathering, but later, following the invention of farming (Neolithic Revolution) they practiced cropping and kept animals. Petroglyphs displays the culture, economy, outlooks, customs and traditions of ancient people. They were discovered in three different sites of hilly plateau. Discovered man-mad caves, , traces of early settlements and primitive burials, show that, terrain was covered with thick vegetation from Upper Paleolithic until Medieval times. Petroglyphs of Gobustan – that enclose quite a long period of human history, are one of the riches and oldest petroglyph collections in the world. The drawings of various theme, technic and style , is a solid encyclopedia of mankind clearly reflecting the way of life of the ancient people who inhabited those territories of Azerbaijan through different ages of human history. Today is an open-air museum. Annually this stone picture gallery is visited by thousands people from all over the world. Art-Cultural Landscape (Preserve) with all cave paintings included, was declared UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2007.