The road to Lahıc with huge cliffs and 300m drops

Located in the Ismailli Rayon of Azerbaijan, the road to Lahij is one of the most dangerous drives in the world. It follows a river with huge cliffs and 300m drops.

Lahıc yolu

How long is the road to Lahıc?

The road to Lahij (also known as Lagich, Lahich, and Lahic) is mostly unpaved. It’s 19.2 km (11.9 miles) long, starting at the paved R-8, to the east of Təzəkənd. The drive starts as a tarmac road but then deteriorates into a potholed-mixed surface messy road, and then a track. As you approach Lahic, the narrow mountainous road gets steeper every turn.

Is Lahıc worth it?

At an elevation of 1,375 m (4,514 ft) above the sea level, Lahij is a small town buried deep on the southern slopes of Greater Caucasus. The village was isolated for centuries forcing them to develop their own language and skills. This medieval town with cobbled streets and squares is one of the most famous craft and trading centers in the Caucasus and beyond. You can spend a few interesting hours in Lahic: walk along the cobblestone streets, visit the History Museum and the Mosque, browse the shops, have a look at the copper workshop or try to visit the carpets cooperative.

Is the road to Lahıc difficult?

The road to the town is extremely narrow and winds up the Girdimanchai river gorge from the vineyards outside Semaka, crossing the "torrent" (more like a trickle) on a flimsy bridge (more like flimsy) and skirting the sheer walls on narrow, roughly hewn ledges. The drive has some spectacular sections with perilous drops, geological wizardry and a couple of attractive villages en route. Ice and snow cut Lahic off from the valley for weeks at a time in winter and washouts are common in heavy spring rains. The drive up to Lahic is as stunning as dangerous: animals appear out of nowhere in a winding 'road' that hugs the cliff face that plunges down into the valley below. Running through a mountain gorge, the drive offers stunning views with hairpin turns, rock falls and wash-outs. Due to frequent earthquakes, it can be closed anytime. A 4 WD and an experienced driver are recommended.
Road suggested by: Hugh Wilson
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