Tsori tower-castle complex

 

Tsori – located in the Dzheyrahsky district of Ingushetia.

Tsori is a XVth century fortified tower complex with 3 battle towers and several residential buildings – typical Vainakh castle complex. It was surrounded by a fortified wall from which only the foundation stands today. Burial vaults lie a few meters from it.

Tsori, like all the other historic sites, was severely damaged during the XIX century Russian conquest of the Caucasus.

In 2011, the Russian authorities decided to build a 60 billion ruble ski resort in the region.

Dargavs – “city of the dead”

Dargavs necropolis dead town North Ossetia crypts North Caucasus mountains

Dargavs “Dead City” is a pagan necropolis situated in Prigorodny district of North Ossetia republic, in the historic Kurtat gorge.

Dargavs contains 97 crypts, making it the biggest necropolis in North Caucasus. Next to the crypts lies a watchtower, meant to protect and watch over the dead.

The architecture has a visible resemblance to that of Vainkah crypts (found in neighboring Ingushetia and Chechnya). The crypts were built during the pagan era in the Caucasus, before the introduction of Semitic religions (Christianity and Islam).

Ikalchu fortress, Chechnya

Ikalchu Chechnya Caucasus mountains beautiful scenery nakh vainakh towers

Ikalchu castle Chechnya Caucasus mountains

Ikalchu is a XIV century fortress complex located in Meshi-Khi River valley, Chechnya. The gorge is heavily fortified as there are dozens of tower complexes along it.

Ikalchu is part of the Argun State History, Architecture and Nature Museum Reserve, which covers hundreds of ancient towers, settlements and fortifications  in southern Chechnya. Many were destroyed during the Caucasian wars, during the Soviet deportations, and again during the 1990’s Chechen-Russian wars. Around 200 structures are still standing today (though none fully intact).

Ikalchu Chechnya north Caucasus mountains

Ikalchu residential towers and fortress complex

Ikalchu Chechnya landscapes north Caucasus mountains

Ikalchu Chechnya Caucasus mountains beautiful landscape

Tower-castle complex

Ichalcu Chechnya tower Chechens North Caucasus mountains Vainakh eastern europe

Watchtower

Ikalchu tower Chechnya Caucasus mountains

Ikalchu battle tower Chechnya Caucasus mountains

Ikalchu watchtower Chechnya Caucasus mountains eastern europe

Ikalchu Chechen Nakh tower Chechnya North Caucasus Vainakh 3

Ikalchu castle fortress Chechnya Caucasus mountains

Ikalchu Chechnya castle Caucasus mountains eastern europe

Crypts

Crypts

Residential towers

Residential towers

Ikalchu crypts Chechnya Caucasus mountains

Ikalchu crypt Chechnya Caucasus mountains

Ikalchu fortress Chechnya Caucasus mountains

Ikalchu Chechnya Caucasus mountains landscape

Chechnya landscape Caucasus mountains eastern europe

Neighboring battle tower (the valley is heavily fortified)

Neighboring battle tower (the valley is heavily fortified)

Ikalchu castle tower complex Chechnya Caucasus mountains eastern europe

Ikalchu towers compex Chechnya Caucasus mountains

Ikalchu residential towers from the distance

Ikalchu towers Chechnya Caucasus mountains

river in Ikalchu Chechnya Caucasus mountains

 

‘Abode of the deity’ Tsoy-Pede, Chechnya

Tsoy-Pede “Abode of the deity” is a XIV century necropolis located in the historic area Melhista (which means “land of the sun”) in southern  Chechnya. It’s built on a mountain which is surrounded by two rivers; the necropolis has 50 crypts and several towers (some of which were destroyed).

Tsoy-Pede was built before Chechen people’s conversion to Islam, therefore the settlement is adorned with pagan and solar symbols.

The landmark is situated at the border with Georgia and the area is under strict military control. A special permit is needed to visit Tsoy-Pede (as is the case with many of Russia’s landmarks).

Tsoy-Pede is part of the Argun State History, Architecture and Nature Museum Reserve. Argun area was part of intense fighting during the wars, therefore most of its landmarks (which are most numerous in North Caucasus) suffered serious damage.

Vovnushki, Ingushetia

 

 

 

The name “Vovnushki” originates from the Ingush “Vov” (military tower).

Vovnushki is a XII-XVII century complex of towers built on top of a rock, near Guloy-khi river; the towers are jointed together. Another tower is built on a separate cliff. The two separate towers used to be connected by a pendant bridge (as seen in the painting below).

Caucasus mountains Vovnushki Ingushetia landscapes

The tower complex was part of the Silk Road (ancient trade route used for commercial and cultural trade between civilizations); it specifically protected what was called “the Ingush Road”. Trade caravans would cross the gorge to reach the Main Ridge of the Caucasus and then trailed along the Sunzha River valley to get to Magas city.

The rest of the settlement also includes crypts for burial, sanctuaries, mausoleums. Vovnushki belongs to Dzheyrahsky – Assinsky Museum-Reserve.

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