|Address||Heydar Aliyev, 323, Baku, Azerbaijan|
|Club||Azerbaijan national football team, Qarabağ FK (international fixtures)|
|Build Date||6 March 2015|
|Architect||Heerim, ROSSETTI (Sports Architect)|
|Average Attendance||26,882 (Qarabag’s European Season 2018-19)|
|Record Attendance||67,200 (Qarabag – A.S. Roma 1:2, 27 September 2017)|
|Stadium Cost||$600 million|
|Who is the owner of Baku Olympic Stadium?||Association of Football Federations of Azerbaijan|
|Pitch Size||105 m × 68 m|
|Where is Baku Olympic Stadium located?||40.4298962,49.9197241|
|Nickname||Also known as Bakı Olimpiya Stadionu and Baku National Stadium|
This marvellous stadium is located in the capital of Azerbaijan. The country’s largest multi-purpose sports venue is often compared with famous Allianz Arena in Munich because of spectacular ETFE cushions that light up making the stadium’s exterior simply fantastic at night. The major drawback of this bowl-shaped arena is that it has a running track around the field. It certainly worsens the view of the pitch and some fans even bring binoculars to watch the game.
Baku Olympic Stadium’s construction lasted from 2011 until 2015. It was built to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Azerbaijani football and to host the first European Games in June of 2015. The project was meant to play an important role in the country’s popularization on the world travel map and therefore it was funded by the Azerbaijani government.
Baku National Stadium has three tiers throughout its length, except for the small fourth tier located above the halfway line. The categories of seats include:
- VIP areas located at the fourth tier and central parts of tier three;
- Main stand seats located at the first and the second tiers of the longside stands;
- Seats located behind the goals.
Despite the stadium’s remoteness from the major European cities, quite a few important football fixtures recently took place there. Of course, the most notable matches were 2019 UEFA Europa League Final and the UEFA Champions League home matches of Qarabag, especially in 2017 when the club played at the Champions League group stage. The stadium hosted super-anticipated matches against Roma, Atletico Madrid, and Chelsea. Also, important social events and the international athletics competitions such as the 2015 European Games gathered many spectators at Baku’s most brilliant sports venue.
Buying tickets to various events taking place at Baku Olympic Stadium has never been simpler than it is now. You can go to StubHub and purchase those tickets in minutes, even if you still cannot find Azerbaijan on the map. This timesaving resource provides very handy instruments to navigate, sort, and book tickets for the important football matches and other events. You can always get them delivered to your country. In most cases, they sell tickets at a reasonable price.
Of course, there are alternative ways to get Baku Olympic Stadium tickets:
- At the official site of Qarabag FK for the club’s European fixtures taking place at Baku National Stadium;
- By phone – (+994 12) 422 64 10;
- At the ticket office located near the ground.
The prices largely depend on the status of the competition and the teams at field. It’s also usual for prices to be revealed late on but in most cases, they are affordable for an average European football fan.
The Azeri capital and the whole Caucasus region, in general, are still underrated among tourists. This often means that you can get more for your money. The hospitality of the local people is sincere and extremely heart-warming. Therefore, I definitely recommend you to go visit Baku and enjoy both the city and its outstanding football ground. But before you go there, you should visit Booking.com and choose one of the hundreds of hotels available in the capital of Azerbaijan. Some tips below will help you to start the search. Just keep in mind that the venue is located about 10 miles north-east of the Old City of Baku. But some of the city’s best hotels are situated within acceptable driving distance from the stadium.
- Golden Falcon Hotel Baku – provides excellent economy-class rooms starting at 21$. It’s convenient that the venue is located within a 10-minute drive from Baku Olympic Stadium. They also have some affordable and cosy family rooms with garden views. And there is a children’s playground located onsite.
- Avenue Hotel Baku – features large fully-packed rooms at a nice price of 38$. It’s located about 5 miles away from the country’s main football ground. It’s really hard to find any complaints regarding this incredible hotel.
- Hotel Emerald – is another awesome place to stay in Baku. It’s priced 52$ per night. The number of wonderful handy details in the rooms will make you extremely satisfied with your choice. It’s situated about 4 miles away from Baku’s main stadium.
- Joyy Hotel & Spa – provides exceptionally great accommodations with lots of high-class amenities. Among them are the spa and wellness centre, swimming pool, gym, airport shuttle, and superb rooms. The price including breakfast is 52$. It takes about 10 minutes to get from this place to the football ground.
- Nord West Hotel Baku – is less than 3 miles away from Baku Olympic Stadium and surrounded by a number of transportation options, some markets and decent places to eat out. They charge 36$ per night for relaxing and well-organized accommodations.
How to get to
Baku’s fantastic stadium is not centric. Quite the opposite, it is situated halfway from the airport to the Old City. Although the distance from the ground both to the airport and the central streets and attractions is about 10 miles, the city offers enough convenient options to reach the venue.
By Metro – is probably the most favourable way of transportation in Baku, especially for those heading to the National Stadium. The metro’s red line connects the Old City and the sports ground. Koroglu station is literally a few steps away from the venue.
By Bus – the bus lines 1, 7B, 15, 38, 62, 93, 184 and a number of others connect different parts of Baku with the Olympic stadium. The venue can be easily spotted on the map since it sits by Lake Boyukshor, translating as ‘Big Salty Waters’.
By Car – use sat nav to reach the stadium in the most efficient way. Traffic jams are possible on important matchdays. The address of the ground is Heydar Aliyev, 323, Baku, Azerbaijan.
By Train – Baku Central Railway Station is located about 7 miles south-west off Baku Olympic Stadium, not far from the green/red metro station called “28 May”. The Azeri capital is connected via train routes with the nearby countries including Georgia and Armenia. If you cannot find an affordable airline ticket to Baku, you can always fly to Tbilisi or Yerevan and take a train to Baku from there.
By Plane – Heydar Aliyev International Airport is quite small but modern and convenient. The bus line H1 can bring you from your terminal to the ground in less than 40 minutes.
The venue boasts with 3,100 modern parking spaces but unfortunately, they are mostly used by VIP guests and priority ticket holders. However, there is always a solution. The approximate matchday paid parking price near the sports venue in Baku is 6 AZN ($3.5).
Eating out nearby
Azeri cuisine can surprise you with saffron-flavoured rice known as plov or pilaf, an abundance of fresh herbs and veggies, unique fruity sauces, and certainly kebab. Halva and pakhlava are incredibly rich desserts which are known throughout Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and the Caucasus region in particular. While some of the dishes have Iranian and Turkish roots, in Azerbaijan, there are many secret recipes and these desserts can often taste different from what you might expect. Azeri black tea is an extremely popular drink in the country and it tastes great with the local sweet pastry. Below you’ll find some more information on where exactly to try those tasty treats during your stay in Baku.
Pubs, bars & cafes
- Olimp Pub – can be found about 5 miles south-west off Baku Olympic Stadium. It’s conveniently located near the red line of the city’s metro. Unlike many other bars, this one also has a huge selection of non-alcoholic drinks. The pub itself is almost like a gallery or a museum. They also often serve food in a creative way.
- Berloga Pub – is located quite close to the football venue in Baku. It’s a pretty nice pub with excellent personnel, snacks, and beer. They serve many classic dishes of European cuisine.
- Pivnaya Apteka – literally translates from the Russian as ‘Beer Chemists Shop’. It’s a 10-minute drive to the stadium and within walking distance from Bakı Dəmir Yolu Vağzalı (the central railway station). This is a wonderful atmospheric pub where the staff members wear chemistry-related costumes such as the lab coats, for instance. The venue serves tons of great meals and exclusive drinks.
- New York Pizza Baku – is a nice pizzeria located about 5 miles from the ground. I agree that pizza is not the most obvious thing to try in Baku. But if you don’t have time for experiments and just need quick delivery of your favourite meal, don’t hesitate to order it there. It’s the highest-rated pizzeria in the city.
- Dubrovka – is a Russian restaurant with its unique charm and wonderful food options. It’s a place where you can relax and hear some calm Russian music.
- Kosebasi Baku – is a 15 mins’ drive from the stadium. It’s an excellent restaurant serving many Azeri and Turkish dishes in the most excellent way. The venue is not cheap compared to the other places in Baku but nonetheless, the food is simply fantastic.
Things to see at the stadium
Azerbaijan’s largest sports venue is really worth visiting it. No wonder it hosted some big games in the recent past because its facilities are truly impressive. If you’d like to have football experience in a moderately exotic country with lots of special and pleasant surprises at every turn, think no more. Baku Olympic Stadium will gladly welcome you and will reveal its most exciting secrets.
While I know many fans of stadium tours in several countries, pretty much none of them has been behind the scenes of Baku Olympic Stadium. The largest ground in the Caucasus region is a truly notable sports venue. It offers some great fan tours, VIP tours, as well as school tours. You can even enjoy their virtual tour online. The most common fan tours are available in English, take 1 hour and are run Monday through Friday, except for the matchdays. You’ll find more info at the stadium’s official site.
The official fan store of the Azerbaijan national football team is located near Marine Passenger Terminal of Baku. It’s very close to the Old City. It’s called GoSport and you can find it on the third floor of Port Baku Mall, 7 miles south-west off the stadium. In fact, there is no fan shop directly at the ground. Speaking about Qarabag’s fans, their best option is to enjoy shopping online at the club’s official website.
Things to do in Baku
Many western travellers have low expectations going in Baku. However, this city has everything to catch you by surprise. Azerbaijan is a small country with interesting geography. It’s lying at the crossroads of Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. Thus, you can find influences from dozens of nearby nations in its architecture, culture, religion, and certainly, cuisine. Unique historical landscapes and towers are mixed with the ultramodern architectural masterpieces. It’s also a safe and cheap place for the European tourist. So there are really no reasons to avoid this thrilling travel destination.
The city of Baku is the place where many cultures and epochs meet. That’s why it’s simply impossible to get bored during the stay in the capital of Azerbaijan. The modern futuristic buildings such as stunning Heydar Aliyev Center Museum and the Flame Towers will remind you of some modern European cities, Kuala Lumpur, and Dubai. The ancient streets of the Old City will immediately transfer you to the medieval Middle East. No matter what you are interested in, you’ll find plenty of marvellous sights, venues, and objects to explore.
Top 3 places to visit
The Old City – is the only thing you really cannot miss during your stay in Baku. This magnificent area features cobblestone streets with narrow alleys and one-of-a-kind architecture. You’ll fall in love with this atmospheric place and will also enjoy the beauty of the local shops and cosy welcoming cafes.
The Formula 1 Tracks – people who love football often adore the other sports too. If you are passionate about cars and racing, don’t miss the opportunity to explore the rack tracks of Formula 1. Fun tours are available and they are entertaining for both genders and all ages.
The Flame Towers – are three epic buildings representing the country’s rich industry of gas. Enjoy the amazing views of these three brother-towers from the nearby mount. Then take the cable car and go all the way down to the object’s entrance. Then go to the towers’ observatory deck which is also a must-do thing in Baku.