I was fortunate enough to have hosted special guest and family member (daughter Christina) for the Novruz Holiday. Turns out, she came just in the nick of time to avoid the new hassle for foreign visitors, as it was explained via the U.S. Embassy:
The U.S. Embassy in Baku, would like to inform all U.S. citizens residing in Azerbaijan that on April 1, 2013 the State Migration Service of Azerbaijan enacted a new law on the registration of foreigners.
The new regulations require that all foreigners register with the State Migration Service within three days of arriving in Azerbaijan. The registration requirement previously applied only to visitors who intended to stay in Azerbaijan for at least 30 days.
Last summer, when I had to renew my registration for remaining in Azerbaijan, the whole thing took hours at the local police station, and lasted over a week's time. But since my daughter's tourist time in Azerbaijan was less than a week, it is a good thing we were not so encumbered.
|Christina at the Sea of Mingachevir, Caucasus Mts. beyond|
|Admiring Mingachevir's "Space Needle"|
|On banks of Kur River by the "Space Needle"|
Christina visits a class...
|...and admires the students' presentation|
|Bonfires being built in school yards...|
|...and in the neighborhoods, preparing for the bonfire jumping...|
|But first we prepare to enjoy Novruz feast...|
|...which includes the national dish--plov...|
|...a very special rice pilaf with dried fruits and meats|
|Everyone gets ready for the bonfire jumping...|
|...all participate, even the youngest Azeris|