Visiting the New Petroglyph Museum of Gobustan

Two weeks ago I visited the new Petroglyph Museum of Gobustan which was built in 2012 just a 5 minute driving distance away from the open-air Gobustan historical reserve. Frankly speaking, I wasn't expecting anything unusual from this visit. Nevertheless, the "wow effect" was indeed there. Gobustan is well known for its ancient rock engravings and mud volcanoes (for us the locals, it is also known for its prison where the most dangerous criminals are kept). Petroglyphs found in this particular area in 20th century, consist of rock engravings of people, ships, animals and hunting scenes. These petroglyphs are mostly from 7th century BC. The oldest of these petroglyphs though, dates from 12th century BC. 

archaeological materials are exhibited both by types and by the ages they supposedly belong to
There are so many interesting, modern and computerised installations in the museum that I couldn't get enough of it. I still regret not being able to take lots of nice photos because the deliberately darkened interior wasn't the perfect shot for my old and cheap Canon camera. Its employees said that the museum contains more than 100.000 archaeological materials and I do believe them. Because I saw so much of interesting stuff both on the ground and the underground floor. It will be interesting both for the adults and for the kids.
kids can do some finger painting and create their own petroglyphs in case they are bored
Aside from the exhibited materials, I was fascinated by the images, illuminations and interactive tricks on the walls, ceilings and floors. I spent more than one hour in the museum but it feels as if I've missed half of the exhibition. 

In the museum, one can also become acquainted with the landscape and fauna of this region from ancient time up to date. I am sorry for not showing enough of photos and the quality itself is not good enough. But I promise to come back one day here with a much better camera and take some nice shots for my readers. On my way out of the museum I decided to take a ride further to the original open air reserve to see how it has changed since I was there about a decade ago. 
it's good to see they have worked on the safety issues because in hot times the place is full of lizards and poisonous snakes.
Just as it has always been, the place is crowded with poisonous snakes and lizards and it is very hard to find a shade where you could rest. The day was unbearably hot and I felt as if the heat was not coming only from the above, but also from the ground. Nevertheless, one should stick to the main track and stay away from the bushes. 
I think I saw a snake in the bushes but could get my camera in time, so I'll show you just a sign.
Lizards though, can easily be seen every other second
Luckily, petroglyphs are still there safe and secure, just like hundreds of years ago:
a cave and rock engravings of humans on its walls
men, a ship and bulls
climate of the area is dry and hot as in hell
Another interesting photo I would like to show you, is the Roman inscription found nearby the Gobustan engravings, just below the hills. It was left by a Roman Legionnaire around 75 AD, during rule of Emperor Domitian. It is the most eastern Roman inscription ever found. The note says: "IMP DOMITIANO CAESARE AVG GERMANIC. LIVIVS MAXIMUS LEG XII FVL" which stands for: "Emperor Domitian, the Blessed Caesar Germanicus. Livius Maximus 12th Legion Fulminata".