Getting to Ganja (Train)
Getting to Ganja (Train) Ganca Reviews
Getting to Ganja (Train) Jul 08, 2007
There are many wonderful places to visit in Azerbaijan. Getting there can prove to be difficult. If you are visiting Baku for an extended period of time, you may want to explore the country a little more. Azal Airlines has domestic flights to Naxcivan and Ganja. The problem with flying domestically from Baku is you have to go into the city to get your ticket. The taxi fare to and from the airport is 20-40 manat (about $23-$45) each way. Flights to Ganja cost $50US each way for foreigners. Plus you have to go to the airport and wait for the maybe-it-will-leave-on-time-maybe-it-won't flight.
For my first trip into Ganja I took the night train. I was able to buy my ticket the afternoon before the departure for 7 manat (about $8 US) at the ticketing office at the train station. I paid for a berth in a two cabin sleeper. There are bigger cabins that sleep more and are less expensive.
The cabin itself is comfortable. The berth is about the size of a twin bed. Fresh linen and a pillow are provided. While there are some extremely bumpy spots on the ride, I slept through most of the trip. I have never slept that well on any international coach flight no matter how sleep deprived I have been.
It should be noted that if you are traveling during the summer, wait until the last call to board. They do not turn on the air conditioning until well after the train has left the station and the cabin can get very hot.
On the way back, I took the day express to Baku. It cost only 3.50 manat (about $4 US). Unfortunately, it was anything but express. I was told that the trip would be 6 hours but took closer to 7 1/2, but for $4 I did not have much room to gripe. Still, hindsight being 20/20, I would have rather taken another night train.
Most cities within Azerbaijan (with the exception of Naxcivan) can be reached by train. There are also trains that go into Georgia. Unfortunately, while there are trains going into Russia they are closed to all foreigners.
Part of the An American in Azerbaijan travel blog
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