This wonderful region in the south of Russia has been richly endowed with natural beauty and ancient monuments; Ingushetia is the smallest Republic in the Russian Federation. It has the unusually beautiful landscapes of the Greater Caucasus Mountains, Dzheyrakhsky Gorge, the ancient towers of the Galgai (ancestors of the local people), mineral springs and pure mountain river water. This is an open-air museum with a rich history.
Ingushetia stretches in a long strip from north to south and includes steppe, wooded foothills and alpine meadows. The Republic lies in the foothills of the Greater Caucasus Mountains and borders Chechnya, Georgia, North Ossetia and the Kabardino-Balkar Republic. It has the youngest population in Russia — the average age of its inhabitants is 28.7. The Republic itself is the youngest in Russia.
Despite this, Ingushetia has a rich history. The first mentions of the Vainakh peoples (the name Chechens and Ingush give themselves) are in Strabo's Geographica, where they are placed at about 1000BC.
Ingushetia was only given the official status of an independent republic within the Russian Federation in 1992. Therefore, this country, with its centuries-old history, is the youngest republic.
The republic has only 4 towns (Magas, Nazran, Karabulak and Malgobek) and 42 rural administrative divisions. Magas is the capital of Ingushetia; its name means City of the Sun in the Ingush language.
Ingushetia is a mountainous country and visitors come here for extreme holidays and mountain trips. The Greater Caucasus Mountains stretch for about 150 kilometers here. The highest point is Table Mountain at 2993 meters above sea level.
The climate is relatively soft; the average temperature is about –7 °С in winter and about +22 °С in summer.
The republic is crossed by three main rivers: Assa and famous Terek flow from south to north, and Sunzha – from west to east.
Ingushetia has unusually beautiful landscapes, mineral springs and pure mountain river water. The jewel of Ingushetia is the Dzheyrakhsky Gorge, which is really an open-air museum. It is home to 92 historical monuments, including the famous Ingush defense towers. Some architectural structures date back to 2000 BC. The unique natural and climatic conditions undoubtedly place Dzheyrakh at the same level as other famous Caucasus resorts, such as Dombay and Elbrus. Every year, lovers of eco-tourism and nature visit here.
Ingushetia's mountain zone is rich in unique natural monuments: Targim Valley; the gorges of Armkhi and Assa rivers, where numerous cultural and historical monuments are concentrated, such as Alby-Erdy and Tkhaba-Erdy churches; the Vovnushka castle complex; the Khamki, Targim and Egikal architectural complexes, etc. Dzheyrakhsky Gorge is a major Ingush cultural center.
The Ingush towers have unique architecture. They were mostly built on the top of hills. This is because the towers were not only used for defense purposes and for living in but also as signal towers. The builders were not only famous within the country but also beyond it. They kept their art secret and passed it on to their children. The towers beautifully fit into the mountain landscape, they are an artistic continuation.
The gradual stabilization of the political situation in the Caucasus has encouraged a large flow of tourists into Ingushetia, and the unique nature with its original purity, the mountain air and ancient architecture have aroused the interest of both Russian and foreign travelers.