Local & Intl bus transfers

There are bus services on most roads and even the smallest villages usually have at least one bus per day, if there's a way through the potholes. On several long-distance routes bus/minibus services are duplicated by shared taxis which fill up faster and cover the routes recklessly fast for roughly double the mini-bus fare.

The main bus terminal is the Baku International Bus Terminal (http://www.bbak.azBaku International Bus Station is located at the entrance to the capital  You can get there from 20th January underground on public transport buses (No.197, 116, 90). The bus No.90 goes from the bus station to the centre of the capital. The terminal is the main place serving inter-city and international routes running from/to Baku. The site is in Azeri only but it is quite straightforward to navigate. The frontpage shows 2 tables. The first one is the itineraries within Azerbaijan with destination, distance and price in Azeri manats (AZN). The second table is for international destinations. The bookmark 'Gediş haqqı tarifləri' (Fare tariffs) basically copies the same information from the frontpage. The third bookmark 'Hərəkət cədvəli'(Timetable) is the schedule for departures for both local and international destinations. And the last bookmark is in case you decide to book ticket online - then go to 'ONLINE Bilet satışı' (Online Ticket sales) section. Sign up with your details on 'Qeydiyyat' and then search by date and time. Note that bookings are permitted only 10 days prior to your travel date.  

Buses and marshutky (minibuses) to Lenkaran leave approximately every hour or so from the bus station near the metro stop "20th January". You just show up there and pay the driver in local cash. Takes around 5-6 hours. There's also a train which is slower, but somehow more nostalgic.

There is one direct bus from Baku to Lahic and it's almost always prebooked by locals. Meaning you'll need to transfer in Ismayli. And then from there take a shared taxi to Lahic. The whole trip, one way, is a minimum of 4 hours (usually 5-6). Lahic is about 30 km from Ismaili over a rocky country road. You can take a taxi there, which may need to be a 4wd, or a bus if the weather is dry. 

A fastest option are the frequent buses and marshrtuki (minibuses) which need something between 5 and 6 hours for the trip between Baku and Sheki. From Baku there are also trains to Sheki. The trip takes about 8 hours and Sheki's train station is about 5 km outside of the city centre. The train is alright if you want to sleep. But it's slow, and the station is far for Sheki itself. The bus is faster and the station is in the centre.

Getting to Xinaliq involves a bus to Quba (3-4 hours), from there you'll need to find a shared taxi up the hill (1-2 hours). Problem is most taxi go in the morning, so you'd miss them in the afternoon. You can take a private transport up the hill, but this would obviously be more expensive.

NOTE: To get to Xinaliq from Lahic you have to return back to Baku. There is no road connection between the two. The road from Lahic to Xinaliq is only possible by foot or horseback and you probably need a guide as well (distance is about 40-50km).

Approximate driving times from Baku (by car)
Astara    6 hrs
Besh Barmaq    1.5-2 hrs
Lankaran    5 hrs
Minare (Cloudcatcher) 3-4 hrs
Qabala    3.5 hrs
Quba    3 hrs
Red Bridge (Georgian border) 8 hrs
Shamakha    2 hrs
Shaki    6 hrs
Xinaliq    4,5 hrs

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