Makhachkala, Russia


Description of Makhachkala

Makhachkala is a city in southern Russia, in the Caucasus, located on the shores of the Caspian Sea. It is the capital of the Republic of Dagestan and the third largest city in the North Caucasus region and the largest city in the North Caucasus Federal District. It forms urban district the city of Makhachkala. It is the core of the almost million-strong Makhachkala-Caspian agglomeration.


Travel Destinations in Makhachkala

The city stretched along the western coast of the Caspian Sea, currently Makhachkala is one of the fastest growing cities in Russia. The city is divided into three districts, with traditional Soviet names:
Sovetsky district - the central and western part of the city
Leninsky district is located on the southeast
Kirovsky district - the largest in terms of area, in the northern part of the city
Many streets of Makhachkala were renamed in the post-Soviet era, but, like, for example, in Central Asia, some of the old names turned out to be very tenacious, and have been preserved in people's memory, on bus routes and even on some maps: be careful.



1  House with Atlanteans.
2 Rhodope boulevard.
3 Pushkin Street.
4  Dagestan Hotel.
5  Water tower.

West of the center
6 Petrovsky lighthouse.
7  The building of the Agricultural Institute.
8 Assumption Cathedral.

South of the center
9  Central Mosque.
10  Observation deck.


What to do


1 National Museum of the Republic of Dagestan named after I. A. Takho-Godi, st. Daniyalov, 33. ☎ +7 (8722) 67-19-74. 🕑 Tue–Sun 10:00–18:00. 100 rub. For one of the most unusual and diverse regions of Russia, the museum is not large, although in general there is something to see (more than 20 rooms), especially a lot of attention is paid to the Caucasian War. Ethnography with crafts is also well represented, but the nature and ancient history of Dagestan got only one room each. The museum has recently occupied the "House with the Atlanteans", which can be seen from some of the not fully designed expositions, and the rest often lack detailed descriptions.
2 Dagestan Museum of Fine Arts. P.S. Gamzatova, st. Gorky, 8 (across the street from the national). ☎ +7 (8722) 67-25-99. 🕑 Tue–Sun 10:00–18:00. 100 rub. The collection of folk crafts is a good addition to what can be seen in the national museum. Academic and contemporary Dagestan art is presented only in the form of exhibitions. There are also small collections of Russian and Western European art, including paintings on Caucasian themes.
Museum of the History of Makhachkala.



3 Russian Drama Theatre. M. Gorky, Rasul Gamzatov Avenue, 38.
4 Kumyk Music and Drama Theater named after A.P. Salavatov. Oct 2019
5 Avar Music and Drama Theater named after Gamzat Tsadasa. Oct 2019
Lak Music and Drama Theater named after E. Kapiev.
6 Dagestan State Puppet Theatre.
Dagestan State Opera and Ballet Theatre.


Getting here

By plane
1 Uytash Airport (named after Amet-Khan Sultan, IATA: MCX), south of the city of Kaspiysk, 23 km from the center of Makhachkala. The largest airport in terms of passenger traffic in the North Caucasus, although in terms of flight structure it does not differ from others in this region: daily you can fly only to Moscow. In addition to Moscow (several flights a day), as of 2018, St. Petersburg, Surgut and several cities of the South of Russia are included in the schedule, and from international flights - Istanbul, Dubai and Aktau. The airport itself is very small and is clearly waiting for expansion. Before security control, there is a cafe with traditional pastries, a coffee shop, a fast food restaurant with burgers, a cafe "Oblaka" with normal food on the second floor and several souvenir shops, but after control there is only a buffet, and even there may not be enough seats for everyone . The arrivals area does consist of one room for baggage claim.
There is no stable public transport to the airport, an official taxi costs 300 rubles. to the center of Kaspiysk and 700-800 r. to the center of Makhachkala or the southern bus station. Mobile applications (Yandex.Taxi, maxim) offer prices 1.5-2 times lower, but usually in this case the car will have to wait a little longer.

By train
Although there is a daily train from Makhachkala to Moscow, and even to some more distant cities, due to the long distance and travel time, they can hardly be convenient. Relatively quickly, you can only get to Mineralnye Vody (15 hours on the St. Petersburg train, once every two days) and Astrakhan (10-11 hours on the Moscow and some others, at least once a day). There is no normal railway communication with other republics of the North Caucasus, except for the same St. Petersburg train, which passes almost all of them, but through places that are not very interesting for travelers. Trains towards Azerbaijan are rare and in no hurry, to Baku 10-12 hours.

Electric trains to Derbent run twice a day, the journey takes 2.5 hours: in some cases they can be more convenient than minibuses, although nominally much slower than them. In the direction of Khasavyurt, the train runs once a day and has no advantages over minibuses and “collective” taxis. There are no suburban trains to other destinations.

2 Railway station (Makhachkala II - Port), st. Emirova, 10 (by the sea, the western part of the city center).

By bus
Both Makhachkala bus stations are located at the entrances to the city, but are accessible by public transport. The main bus station is the northern one, from there there are buses and minibuses in the northern and eastern directions and transit buses to the south. The southern bus station logically remains routes to the south - in particular, to Derbent and to the Azerbaijani border. Both bus stations are surrounded by all kinds of trade.

3 Northern bus station, ave. Ali-Gadzhi Akushinsky (at the northern exit to the highway). This bus station is a very flexible concept: in addition to two landing sites at the bus station itself, one more is located a little further away, and some minibuses depart from somewhere nearby. Arriving minibuses generally try not to participate in this, but stop on the avenue across the road. By the way, there is a small corner of civilization: KFC (real and round-the-clock) and the Severny shopping center with the Golden Apple supermarket (8:00–00:00).
4  South bus station, ave. Amet-Khan Sultan (at the southern exit to the highway). Compared to the bus station, much less confusing and busy. Located in the depths of the market, but, fortunately, visible from the avenue.


Around the city

Numerous minibuses, the fare is 27 rubles. (2021), payment is usually at the exit. The trolleybus network is also alive in Makhachkala, although trolleybuses sometimes have a hard time in city traffic. The fare is 15 rubles. (2021), payment at the exit. A feature of the network is two intercity routes to neighboring Kaspiysk (3/327 and 12/326). The bus route to the same Kaspiysk (No. 100) is served by almost the only large city buses in the city.

Driving a car around the city would not be the best idea. From the point of view of a pedestrian, there are no particular problems in the central regions: there are sidewalks, and pedestrian crossings, and traffic lights, but on the outskirts (if you somehow find yourself there) you may not have all this.

Both Yandex-taxi and calling a taxi through an operator work:

Yandex Taxi +7(8722)77-70-00
Taxi Time +7(8722)66-05-05
Taxi Anji +7(8722)55-00-55



Supermarket "Green Apple", ave. Rasula Gamzatova, 57. The main supermarket of the only network in Makhachkala. In addition to the usual range of supermarkets, they sell both Dagestan and generalized oriental goods: not everything that can be found in the markets is more expensive, but in an incomparably more pleasant atmosphere. Cards are accepted, which is a huge rarity for Dagestan.
Second market, st. Batyray / Korkmasov / Dzerzhinsky / Belinsky. The closest to the center of the Makhachkala markets. They sell on it spices, and dried fruits, and dairy products, and fish, and everything else that Dagestan is rich in. But this is a real oriental bazaar with all its fussiness and philosophical attitude to sanitary standards, except that the sellers behave more cold-blooded than stereotypical ones.



Coffee houses
✦  Z&M coffee chain.
1  Z&M on Buynakskogo, st. Buynaksky, d.6. 🕑 around the clock.

You can eat cheaply in any cafe or canteen. For 200 rubles you can order the first and second.

Average cost
2  Family cafe "In the mountains".

The main expensive restaurants are located in the central part of the city, as well as along the coastline overlooking the sea.

3  Restaurant "Barracuda".
4  Restaurant "Jasmine".
5  Veranda restaurant.
6  Restaurant Viking.



Average cost
1   Hotel "Tarkho", Heydar Hajiyev St., 11k. single standard 2000 rub. The hotel is located away from the central part of the city and is more focused on business travelers. Twenty-seven rooms, some of which do not have outside windows. Wi-Fi, breakfasts in a nearby cafe of the same name, a 24-hour supermarket.
2  Moon Coast Hotel.

3  Leningrad Hotel, R. Gamzatov Avenue.
12  Sport Hotel, Shamil Avenue.
12 President Hotel (near the diagnostic center).


Precautionary measures

Try not to violate local customs and orders, see Dagestan.



The city was founded in 1844 as the Petrovsky fortification. The name was due to the fact that, according to legend, during the Persian campaign in 1722, this place was the camp of the army of Peter I. In 1857, the city was renamed Petrovsk.

From March to April 1918, and also from November 1918 to March 1920 during the Civil War, the city was held by anti-Bolshevik forces and was called Shamil-kala in honor of Imam Shamil.

In 1922 it was renamed Makhachkala (until the 1950s it was often written - Makhach-Kala); the name was given in honor of one of the organizers of Soviet power in Dagestan - Magomed Ali (Makhach) Dakhadaev (1882-1918). The name comes from "Makhach" - an abbreviated form of the name "Magomed", and from kala in the meaning of "city, fortress".


History of Makhachkala

Early history
The Huns, Persians, and Arabs fought for the possession of the "Dagestan corridor" at one time. An important role in the history of the struggle for the possession of this corridor was played by the city of Tarki, located not far from modern Makhachkala. It was first mentioned under the name "Targu" in the 8th century by the Armenian historian Ghevond.

Tarki has been known since the 15th century as a trading center through which the caravan route to the city of Derbent passed - one of the oldest cities in the world. Under the name Inji (common Inzhi, later Anji) the settlement has been known since the Middle Ages.

As part of the Russian Empire
In 1844, on the hilly hills of Anji-Ark, which in Kumyk means “Back (hump) of Anji”, the Petrovsky fortification was laid, named so in memory of Peter I’s stay in these places in 1722 during the Persian campaign. In 1857 it received the status of a city and the name of Petrovsk.

An artificial harbor and port was built in 1870.

In 1894-1896 the city was connected by railways with Vladikavkaz and Baku.

The first industrial enterprise of the city was a brewery built in 1876. In 1878, the first printing house began to operate. Later, two tobacco factories were built.

At the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th centuries, the intensive development of the city began. The Rostov-on-Don-Baku railway was built, along which train traffic was opened to Petrovsk-Port.

By 1897, the population of the city had more than quadrupled and exceeded 8.7 thousand people.

In 1900, they completed the construction of the largest enterprise in the city of the paper-spinning factory of the joint-stock company "Caspian Manufactory" (in the Soviet period, the factory named after the III International).

In 1914 a small oil refinery was built. The population increased and exceeded 24 thousand people, the city took first place among the cities of Dagestan both in terms of population and economic importance. The city of Temir-Khan-Shura remained the administrative and political center of the Dagestan region.
At the end of 1915, the railway line Petrovsk - Temir-Khan-Shura was put into operation, connecting the city with mountainous Dagestan.

At the end of the 19th - beginning of the 20th centuries, an oil refinery and a cooperage plant, a paper-spinning and tobacco mill, and railway workshops were built in Petrovsk.

There were only four streets in Petrovsk - Baryatinsky (now Buynaksky); Privolnaya (now Daniyalova ← Markova ← Sadovaya ← Privolnaya); Cathedral (now Mantashev Street ← Oskar ← Oktyabrskaya ← Cathedral) and Inzhenernaya (now R. Gamzatov ← V. I. Lenin ← Komsomolskaya ← Inzhenernaya)[20]. The streets in the central part were paved with cobblestones and lit with kerosene lanterns. There were stone and brick houses in which officials, officers and clergymen, wealthy citizens lived. On the main street - Baryatinsky - there was a hotel "Gunib" for 25 people, several shops, a pharmacy, a cinema "Progress", and on the site where the State Bank (Central Bank of the Russian Federation) is now located, there was an inn. The rest of the streets were covered with impassable mud, and in summer - dust, clouds of flies and mosquitoes. From the bath, demolished only in 2004, and located on the street. Malygin 1, a ditch was dug through which dirty water flowed into the sea. Even the area near the cathedral, where the Government House is now located, was a cluttered and undeveloped area. The city had only one library with three thousand books, but there were over two dozen drinking establishments. There was no water supply in the city, people carried water in barrels.

After the October Revolution of 1917, during the years of the civil war, the city repeatedly passed from hand to hand of the warring parties. On November 18, 1918, the “white” mayor, Colonel Abdusalam Magometov, issued an order to rename the city to Shamil-Kala. In March 1920, Soviet power was finally established in Petrovsk, and with it the historical name returned to the city.


In Soviet times

On the maps of the 1920s, along with the name of Petrovsk, the “folk” name of Anzhi was indicated.

On May 14, 1921, by order No. 59 of the Dagestan Revolutionary Committee, the city of Petrovsk-Port was renamed Makhachkala, in honor of the Dagestan revolutionary Makhach Dakhadaev (1882-1918). On December 15, 1923, the Presidium of the Central Executive Committee of the DASSR declared Makhachkala the capital of the DASSR.

In the mid-1930s, the urban-type settlement of Petrovsk-Kavkazsky (now the Makhachkala-1 microdistrict) was attached to the city.

The eviction of the Kumyk population and the expansion of Makhachkala
On April 12, 1944, a decision was made to resettle the inhabitants of Tarka, Kyakhulai and Alburikent to the lands of the deported Chechens. Most of the released land was distributed to the Makhachkala city council (6243 out of 8166 hectares), in addition to the collective farms of the mountainous regions and industrial enterprises of Makhachkala. After the return of the Kumyk population in 1957, the lands of the collective farms were not restored, personal property was also lost, many houses were occupied by those resettled from mountainous areas. The historical monuments of the ancient city were destroyed, part of the infrastructure of Makhachkala was laid out of the materials.

In Soviet times, the capital of Dagestan developed rapidly, from the 1930s to the 1980s the population increased by more than 10 times, the basic social infrastructure, a modern education system and basic industries were created. The problem of water supply was solved, dozens of medical institutions, cultural institutions were built, higher and secondary educational institutions were opened. All the peoples of Dagestan participated in the formation of the composition of the population of the city of Makhachkala.

Until 1952, the Temple of the Grand Duke Alexander Nevsky stood near the Central Square of the city. The temple was consecrated on August 30, 1891. In 1952, it suffered the same fate as many religious buildings in Soviet Russia - the temple was demolished. At present, the building of the head and government of the Republic of Dagestan is located in its place.

During the Great Patriotic War, 5 Makhachkala residents were awarded the title of Hero of the Soviet Union.

Great changes in all spheres of city life took place in the post-war 1950-1970s. Already in 1969, there were 4 universities in Makhachkala: (Dagestan State University, agricultural (now Dagestan State Agricultural Academy), medical (now Dagestan State Medical Academy), and pedagogical (now Dagestan State Pedagogical University) institutes, 51 secondary schools, dozens of libraries with a total fund of more than 1.4 million books, more than 20 cinemas (most were later reorganized).Civil construction developed rapidly.Large industrial facilities were located, among them the factories named after M. Gadzhiev, Mashinostroitelny (now "Aviaagregat") , a separator plant, Dagelektromash, Instrument-Making, Steklovolokno, a radio goods plant, Eltav, factories named after the III International, named after Krupskaya, a fish cannery named after Fighters of the Revolution and others.

In the late 1960s, it was planned to install a funicular in Makhachkala on the slope of Mount Tarki-Tau, but later the project was curtailed.

Makhachkala was badly damaged during the earthquake on May 14, 1970.


End of XX century

In connection with the collapse of the USSR, the beginning of economic reforms and the transition to a market economy, the industry of Makhachkala, mainly focused on orders from the military-industrial complex, found itself in a difficult situation. The conversion programs could not be implemented.

In the 1990s, a protracted stage of declining production began. For example: the Fiberglass plant provided jobs for 3,800 people until 1990, now it is less than 500. 3rd International and Krupskaya, the Fish and Canning Plant were completely disabled and liquidated, and the territory was sold for construction. It's the same with other businesses. In the late 1990s, the situation began to improve. The beginning of the 21st century is marked by significant positive changes in the structure of production and the growth of the industrial potential of the city.

In 1998, Said Amirov was appointed head of the city administration.

At the end of the 20th century, Makhachkala became the target of Wahhabis and radical Islamic organizations.


XXI Century

In June 2013, the head of the administration of Makhachkala, Said Amirov, was arrested by law enforcement agencies. DSU Rector Murtazali Rabadanov was appointed in his place. In April 2014, Rabadanov resigned from his post and. O. Mayor of Makhachkala at his own request, and in his place the head of Dagestan Ramazan Abdulatipov appointed Magomed Suleimanov. In July 2015, instead of Suleimanov and. O. Musa Musaev became mayor. The deputies of the city assembly of Makhachkala decided to prematurely dismiss the mayor of the capital of Dagestan, Musa Musaev, who was sentenced to four years in prison for fraud. On December 27, 2018, the press service of the mayor's office informed about this. From January to November, Abusupyan Gasanov was the acting mayor of Makhachkala. On November 7, 2018, Abusupyan Gasanov was arrested on suspicion of embezzlement of 40 million rubles in his position as acting head of state. O. mayor of the city. After the dismissal of Mayor Abusupyan Gasanov on November 8, 2018, until January 31, 2019, Murad Aliyev was the acting mayor of Makhachkala.

On January 31, 2019, the deputies of the city assembly of Makhachkala elected a new mayor of the capital of Dagestan, the former head of the administration of the Basmanny district of Moscow, Salman Dadaev, became him.

In 2001, 2002, 2003 and 2011, Makhachkala was among the top three in the contest "The most comfortable city in Russia" held by Rosstroy. Announcing the results of the competition for 2011, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev called the prize-winning place of Makhachkala "especially important."