The Gilaki Synagogue is the synagogue in which today the residents of Red Settlement pray and which has never been closed. It was built by natives of the Persian province of Gilan. The architect of this temple is Hillel Ben Haim and his name is inscribed on the brick facade. The temple was constructed in 1896, according to the inscription on the foundation stone. The synagogue has 12 windows, one for each of Israel's tribes. The bimah, situated under the wooden dome, is a two-tiered octahedral platform with stairs that houses a massive pulpit for reading the Torah scroll. In 2000 during the renovation of one of the walls of the synagogue a hiding place was discovered in which about 50 cases for Torah scrolls were kept. It is likely that this hiding place (a kind of genizah) contained the Torahs from all the synagogues in Red Settlement that were confiscated by the Soviet government in the 1930s.
Of the seven bridges that existed in the Guba region between the 17th and 19th centuries, this is the only one that still remains. This longest bridge was built in 1894 by Alexander III to strengthen Russia's military presence in the Caucasus, replacing a wooden bridge built over the Gudialchay river in 1851. Originally, a 19-span bridge was planned. However, due to landslides during construction, lower numbers were chosen. The bridge has 14 spans, a total length of 275 meters, and an 8-meter width. Because of its multi-span design, the bridge can withstand powerful massive flooding and mudflows that raise the river's water level. This is Azerbaijan's only bridge of this type from the nineteenth century. The bridge is now only used by pedestrians and offers a spectacular view of Red Village. It provides easy access to Red Village from Nizami Park, the city's oldest park. The bridge has been designated as an architectural landmark by the state. Many young Mountain Jews have relocated to cities to further their education and learn trades. The burnt bricks used to build the old bridge saw many changes in Red Village, from the heyday of religious life in the early twentieth century, when the village had 13 synagogues, to the arrival of Soviet power and subsequent religious repression, to soldiers being escorted to the front in World War II, many of whom never returned. It has come to represent the settlement and the close ties between two cultures: the Muslims of Guba and the Jews of Red Village.
Monuments to soldiers who died fighting for peace and freedom have been designed and built throughout Azerbaijan. Red Village is home to one of them. On June 22, 1941, Azerbaijan, as part of the Soviet Union, joined the Great Patriotic War to defeat fascism. The Nazi command was particularly interested in Baku's oil during the war and attempted to seize control of it during the battles for the Caucasus.
This tour is a chance to discover life and traditions of mountain Jews living in Guba for centuries. It focuses on the architectural and livelihood experiences as synagogues, mikveh’s, arch bridge, restaurant, museum of mountain Jews and etc.
This day trip takes you around the beautiful city of Guba to get a full experience of what the city has to offer. You will visit the Guba Carpet factory to see the women who make handmade carpets and the Qechresh forest for an amazing panoramic view . The last stop will be to the Red Village, also called the Jewish Settlement Area, which is believed to be the only completely Jewish town outside of Israel and the United States. Here, you will have the opportunity to learn all about the "Mountain Jews" and their incredible history that dates back to the 18th century.
Travel with an expert! Come join me on an exploration of the Jewish history in the region of the famous Jewish village. As a researcher of Mountain Jewish history and a native English (וגם עברית) speaker, you won't find a high-quality, more in-depth tour of Quba than with me and my company Moreshet Adventures. A variety of tour opportunities exist: just the village, the village + region (culture and Jewish history), with options for continuing into the local mountains and Shabbat experiences in the village.
Near the old arched bridge is the Red Village Mountain Jewish restaurant. With breathtaking views of the Gudialchay river and unique Mountain Jewish specialties, the restaurant provides a delightful local dining experience for tourists.You can enjoy the culinary delights< which includes recipes passed on over centuries from generation to generation. These include Geylo, a vegetable dish made from spinach; Khoyahusht, whose name comes from the Juhuri words for egg and meat, though the dish can also be made from fish and vegetables; Shomokufte, a minced meat cutlets dish that is popular in cold weather; and Yarpagi, which always consumed on special occasions and is a kind of oriental cabbage rolls served with boiled rice. Restraunt mainly works with groups, so make sure to contact them and make a request in advance.
Delicious food, nice staff, cozy atmosphere, and a highly rated restaurant in Guba
Azar is a professional tour guide from Baku who offers a variety of tours in English, Russian, and Turkish. He offers half-day, full day and multi-day tours in Baku, Gabala, and Guba.
Regina was born and raised in Red Settlement, located in Guba. She works as a guide in the Red Settlement, where she shares her knowledge with the visitors.
Elnara was born in the Khachmaz region and moved to Israel with her family while studying in 4’th grade. After a few years, she moved back to Azerbaijan. Here she started her career as a guide, developing her tours for students in northern regions. Later she moved to Red Settlement in Guba city, where she shares her passion and knowledge of Jewish Heritage with visitors.
Quba Khanate (Guba) was ruled by Hussein Ali Khan in the 18th century. Under his rule, the capital was moved from Khudat to Quba which strengthened the economic foundation of his khanate. This included bringing in many craftsmen and tradesmen, many of whom were Mountain Jews from the destroyed settlement of Kulqat. They established a new settlement known as Qirmizi Qasaba (Red Town), which developed rapidly during the reign of the succeeding ruler of Quba, Fatali khan. Fatali khan joined south Dagestan and the entire north east of Azerbaijan under his state. As a result of the economic rise and the friendly attitude towards Jews, the Jewish population of Qirmizi Qasaba, a small village in Quba, was rapidly increasing. Groups of Jews were coming here from different parts of Azerbaijan, as well as Iran, Turkey and Dagestan. Thus, the population of Qirmizi Qasaba was 3,000 in 1856, 5,120 in 1873, 6,280 in 1886 and 8,400 in 1916, which was the town’s record population. Since then, the population of the town has been constantly decreasing. Fatali khan’s period is considered a true renaissance of Qirmizi Qasaba and the Mountain Jews and even now, the central street of the town carries his name. Today, 300 years later, Qirmizi Qasaba is a settlement with a population of 3,000, although many people, especially the youth, leave the town to pursue a better life in Russia, the USA and Israel. Qirmizi Qasaba is believed to be the world's only all-Jewish town outside Israel. The village is connected to the city of Quba via a bridge across the Qudyalchay River. The most widely spoken language in Krasnaya Sloboda is Juhuri. Azerbaijani and Russian languages are also widely used. The town, which stretches from south-west to north-east along Qudyalchay River, is divided into three main neighborhoods: Qusari, Gilaki and Qachayi. Qirmizi Qasaba used to have 13 synagogues though today, only two of them function and four are partially ruined. All the houses in Qirmizi Qasaba are facing the main streets running parallel to the river. The houses are not built in accordance with a certain city plan but are rather crowded together. Most older buildings are made from flat brick and red-tiled roofs. Hillel Ben-Hayyim, who constructed many houses and synagogues in a unique, richly ornamented manner, has left his signature style in the entire village. Most houses have two, or more floors. The closed courtyards were used during the festival of Sukkot to make booths in which the families traditionally lived during the seven days of the festival. The house of Aghababayevs was repurposed as a library and administrative building in Soviet times. People of Qirmizi Qasaba have been engaged in small trades, crafts and played an important role in the carpet weaving school of Quba. Predominantly a female occupation, some women from Quba gained fame as first-class artisans. Most of them spun and dyed their own wool. The madder plant, from which a red dye was extracted, and the saffron, used for a yellow dye, were both cultivated by Jews. The indigo plant, which yielded a blue dye, was imported to the Caucasus by Jewish merchants. The Mountain Jews supplied markets with these goods until the mid-19th century, when they were forced to halt their operations because of the nomadic way of life imposed on them. However, after the Soviet regime established workers’ collectives and home industries in the 1930s, Caucasian Jewish women resumed the art of weaving. Carpets with different Jewish motifs such as menorah and dragons from Quba. Such carpets will be displayed in the Mountain Jew Museum to be opened in October, 2019. Qirmizi Qasaba is the home of many well-known politicians, businessmen, scientists, and notable figures living and working in Russia, Israel, USA, Germany, the United Kingdom, and Azerbaijan. Among them are the Russian entrepreneurs Zarah Aliyev and God Nisanov, the Soviet orthopedist Gavril Ilizarov (who invented a special device for treating skeletal deformities), as well as the family of musicians Ilizarovs, the writer Vladimir Aghababaev, poet Yasha Mashiahov, Olympian fencer and trainer Zinaida Misheva and others. The new development plans in Qirmizi Qasaba include restoring the ruined synagogues, as well as establishing many other attractions, such as the Museum of Mountain Jews, Tourism Information Centers, restaurants of Kosher food, and more.
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"Quba Palace" is a magnificent five-star hotel in Quba, one of Azerbaijan's most attractive regions. The hotel, which is already near to the magnificent nature, provides an outstanding atmosphere of relaxation, delivers a memorable experience, and promises wonderful entertainment. It is located among the mountains, surrounded by trees.
Companies across the regions, which have been idle for many years, are starting active work due to the new approach to the issues of state property privatization. One of such firms is Guba-based Shahdag Hotel. Activities of manufacturing companies in the regions are being revitalized and the share of the private sector in the national economy is growing from day to day in compliance with Order #1003 dated July 19, 2016 “On Some Measures to Speed Up the Privatization of State Property and Increase Efficiency of its Management” signed by President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev and the strategic roadmaps for development of the main sectors of the national economy. The taken measures are boosting the social and economic development of the regions, new jobs are being created. Successful implementation of investment programs has enabled previously inactive firms and facilities to start manufacturing of competitive products and provide high-quality services.
Located in Quba, Macara Lake Park is located near the Chanlibale lake, where during warm weather you can enjoy catamaran ride. Hotel features a restaurant, bar, a shared lounge and garden. Table tennis is available at the resort, while horseback riding and fishing are popular in the region.