Tourists visit Azerbaijans Shamakhi for stargazing

Tourists visit Azerbaijan’s Shamakhi for stargazingAccording to experts, it is possible to make astrotourism profitable in Azerbaijan 

Nowadays, it is difficult to observe stars in the night sky due to the lighting of almost all areas at night, especially in cities. This situation called light pollution is already observed in most regions of the world, as a result of which the number of areas covered by natural night darkness reduces. A group of photographers in Austria called Nightflight established a new tourism trend in 2014. The group, which organizes tours to Grosmugl, 35 kilometers from Vienna, for those who want to take a photo of the starry sky, has been of great interest in a short time. Grosmugl has become a magnet for both professional and amateur photographers and astronomers, as well as those who want to observe stars and the galaxy in the night sky.The head of the group, Karoline Mrazek, said that hundreds of people visit this area, which is close to the capital Vienna, in nighttime to watch the Perseids, meteor showers, or lunar eclipse. Light pollution has a disruptive effect on the melatonin hormone that regulates night and day rhythm in the human body. At the same time, it violates the rhythm of animals that are active at night, and the rhythm of seasonal change of some plants. Currently, 80 percent of the population in the US, and 99 percent in Europe live with a medium and high-altitude light pollution. The project of Austrian photographers has already caused international repercussions and similar projects are increasing in different countries around the world. Astrotourism includes walks under the clear night sky or visits to observatories. At the same time, this branch of tourism is ecological as people are in contact with nature and support regional tourism.

Muzaffar Agakerimov, Adviser of the chairman of Azerbaijan Tourism Association (AzTA), noted that tourists are interested in all areas of tourism. "There are favorable conditions for the development of tourism in Azerbaijan. At present, Shamakhi Observatory has enough knowledgeable astrophysicists. We can develop astrotourism by taking tourists there. Tourism companies can turn it into an opportunity. They can organize tours for foreign and local tourists. We need to conduct serious propaganda to achieve profitability of this field,” the adviser said.

According to Head of the Casablanca travel company, Javid Jabbarli, if favorable conditions and a competitive environment are created, it will be possible to develop any tourism sector in our country. "We have tours to Shamakhi observatory for both foreign and local tourists. Tours are usually organized in the summer months because the weather condition should be suitable for watching the stars or asteroids through a telescope. For this reason, we organize our tours in summer when the weather is cloudless. We take tourists to the observatory in winter as well, but then they mostly walk through the museum. Usually these are day tours and are not limited to the observatory. Our guests are also acquainted with the Juma mosque and the mausoleum of Piribaba in Shamakhi. The price of our tour packages depends on the number of tourists. Our company has different tour packages. We try to organize all our services at the highest level so that our guests can enjoy the country. This is also a support for the development of tourism in Azerbaijan,” he said.

Chairman of SKAL International Baku (International Association of Travel and Tourism Professionals), Ceyhun Ashurov noted that there are many types of tourism and new ones are created every year. "One of them is astrotourism. Although there are separate types of tourism, sometimes they are interconnected. For example, a tourist arriving in the country for business purposes may visit museums, cultural and historical sites, select some restaurants for a special meal, and use some health products. This is a combination of health, cultural, business, and gastronomic tourism, which means that the types of tourism can actually be easily interchanged. There are elements of ecological tourism in astrotourism. We can create the opportunity to watch sky objects at certain hours when we bring tourists to the Shamakhi observatory. There is beautiful greenery around the observatory, which is interesting for tourists. In general, tourists travel from one country to another in order to see and learn something interesting, entertaining and different,” the chairman added.

Speaking about the possibility to make astrotourism a profitable area, Ashurov said that although this field is not so topical at present, it is dynamically developing. "In any case, everything depends on quantity and quality. So, as the number of tourists coming to the country and the number of new tourism facilities increases, any area of ​​tourism can make profit. Here, we have to pay special attention to the issue of supply and demand. Sometimes supply creates demand, and sometimes, demand creates supply. Thus, as the number of visitors increases, entrepreneurs in this area will start to offer interesting types of tourism. Tourists come to the country with certain funds. If he can not fully spend his funds, this means that the level of tourism development in the country is low. There must be so many colorful, interesting tourist destinations so that tourists want to use and try to experience each one. The presence of interesting, unique types of tourism means opening up new jobs and tourism businesses. This will ensure the profitability of the tourism industry,” he noted.

 

Gunel Azade

6.11.2018 18:02 / Hits: 50 / Print
 
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