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Автор: Luke Duggleby, английский фотограф

Located in the North Caucasus, bordering the Caspian Sea and a Republic of Russia, Dagestan is home to almost 3 million mostly muslim people. Ethnically very diverse, it is made up of several dozen ethnic groups and is Russia's most heterogeneous republic, where no ethnicity forms a majority.

From 2000 until late 2012 Dagestan was subject to a violent Islamic separatist movement that spilled over from neighbouring Chechnya but has now been largely controlled by the Russian Government.

Now peaceful Dagestan, which means Land of Mountains, remains one of Russia's untouched treasures receiving few visitors. Due to its relative isolation, this beautiful mountainous region has maintained its traditional cultures that have been lost in many other parts of Russia.

 The view from the outskirts of the town of Khunzakh which is located on a rocky plateau.

 

Muslim men from the village of Theletl take Friday prayer in the local village Mosque.

 

Muslim men pray in their thousands on the first Friday of Ramadan inside The Grand Mosque in Makhachkala. It is the main mosque of the Republic of Dagestan and is supposed to have been designed after the Sultan Ahmed Mosque in Istanbul. The mosque was completed and consecrated in 1998 and can accommodate 17,000 worshippers.

 

Two local women walk through the old town of Kubachi after having collected water from a local spring. A very traditional village, the women still use the old original containers to collect the water. The village inhabited by people of the Dargin ethnic group is famous throughout the whole of Russia for its skilled silver craftsmen who are commissioned from across Russia and abroad. 

 

A remote twisty road winds its way through the green hills as rain approaches.

 

A local lady stands on her cell phone in the light of a shop doorway in the village of Chokh.

 

Factory workers roll sheets of silver inside the government run Kubachi Silver Factory. He has worked in the factory since 1969. Created in the Soviet times the factory once employed 800 people. Now only 30 remain.
The village inhabited by people of the Dargin ethnic group is famous throughout the whole of Russia for its skilled silver craftsmen who are commissioned from across Russia and abroad. 

 

Dagestani local Khabib Nurmagomedov in his home during Ramadan in Makhachkala. Born September 20, 1988 Khabib is a Russian undefeated mixed martial artist. He is a multiple time Combat Sambo World Champion and a Judo black belt who is currently fighting in the lightweight division for the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). He currently holds one of the longest undefeated streaks in MMA with 22 straight wins. He is currently the #3 contender in the UFC Lightweight division and the #3 Lightweight in the world.
Fighting is embedded in to the culture of Dagestan and it is renowned around the world for producing large numbers of great fighters from wrestlers to mixed martial arts. The Russian government in Moscow also sends large amounts of funding to help train such fighters.

 

A young man smokes shisha in a cafe in Makhachkala.

 

A bride and groom sit on an elaborate stage during a glamorous ceremony in an expensive wedding hall in Makhachkala.

 

Young buys are taught wrestling on a beach by the Caspian Sea. Fighting is embedded in to the culture of Dagestan and it is renowned around the world for producing large numbers of great fighters from wrestlers to mixed martial arts. The Russian government in Moscow also sends large amounts of funding to help train such fighters.

 

After a party, young Dagestani men visit a hot springs in the middle of no-where which has a flammable fountain of water.

 

Young fighters train inside a gym in Makhachkala. Fighting is embedded in to the culture of Dagestan and it is renowned around the world for producing large numbers of great fighters from wrestlers to mixed martial arts. The Russian government in Moscow also sends large amounts of funding to help train such fighters.

 

A muslim man from the village of Theletl washes before Friday prayer in the local village Mosque.

 

A view of the emerald green Sulak River that flows down from the Chirkey reservoir formed by a dam of the same name.

 

Street lamps illuminate the only road leading through the village of Kubachi. The village inhabited by people of the Dargin ethnic group is famous throughout the whole of Russia for its skilled silver craftsmen who are commissioned from across Russia and abroad. 

 

A man jokes around by wearing a Russian Army captain's jacket during a party in Belidgi.

 

Factory workers roll sheets of silver inside the government run Kubachi Silver Factory. He has worked in the factory since 1969. Created in the Soviet times the factory once employed 800 people. Now only 30 remain.
The village inhabited by people of the Dargin ethnic group is famous throughout the whole of Russia for its skilled silver craftsmen who are commissioned from across Russia and abroad. 

 

People walk and chat along the coast of the Caspian Sea in Caspiysk.

 

A Muslim man prays during Ramadan inside The Grand Mosque in Makhachkala. It is the main mosque of the Republic of Dagestan and is supposed to have been designed after the Sultan Ahmed Mosque in Istanbul. The mosque was completed and consecrated in 1998 and can accommodate 17,000 worshippers.

 

Local women collect water from a local spring every morning. A very traditional village, the women still use the old original containers to collect the water. The village inhabited by people of the Dargin ethnic group is famous throughout the whole of Russia for its skilled silver craftsmen who are commissioned from across Russia and abroad.

 

Wrestlers train in the Gamid Gamidov Sports Complex in Khasavyurt. The town has a long tradition of wrestling and produces many of Russia's best who go on to compete at international level.
Fighting is embedded in to the culture of Dagestan and it is renowned around the world for producing large numbers of great fighters from wrestlers to mixed martial arts. The Russian government in Moscow also sends large amounts of funding to help train such fighters.

 

Muslim men pray in their thousands on the first Friday of Ramadan inside The Grand Mosque in Makhachkala. It is the main mosque of the Republic of Dagestan and is supposed to have been designed after the Sultan Ahmed Mosque in Istanbul. The mosque was completed and consecrated in 1998 and can accommodate 17,000 worshippers.

 

Pictures of all the Directors of the government run Kubachi Silver Factory hang on the wall of a corridor. This lady is the only female director working there between 1949-1953. Created in the Soviet times the factory once employed 800 people. Now only 30 remain.

 

Local men stop to help a broken down car on a remote mountain road as rain approaches.

 

Two local women knit together in their house in the old town of Kubachi. The village inhabited by people of the Dargin ethnic group is famous throughout the whole of Russia for its skilled silver craftsmen who are commissioned from across Russia and abroad. 

 

Magomed Abakarov makes a silver tray inside the government run Kubachi Silver Factory. He has worked in the factory since 1969. Created in the Soviet times the factory once employed 800 people. Now only 30 remain.

 

Visitors at a monument to The Caucasian War of 1817-1864 when the Russian Empire invaded the Caucasus which resulted in Russia's annexation of the areas of the North Caucasus.

 

A man prepares a BBQ in his garden during a party in Belidgi.

 

Dagestani local Khabib Nurmagomedov trains in wrestling in a local gym in Makhachkala.
Born September 20, 1988 Khabib is a Russian undefeated mixed martial artist. He is a multiple time Combat Sambo World Champion and a Judo black belt who is currently fighting in the lightweight division for the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). He currently holds one of the longest undefeated streaks in MMA with 22 straight wins. He is currently the #3 contender in the UFC Lightweight division and the #3 Lightweight in the world.

 

A women walks along concrete steps that lead to the Caspian Sea in Caspiysk.

 

Two local women sit outside and chat in the old town of Kubachi. The village inhabited by people of the Dargin ethnic group is famous throughout the whole of Russia for its skilled silver craftsmen who are commissioned from across Russia and abroad. 

 

A local women leans out of the window of her home in the old town of Kubachi. The village inhabited by people of the Dargin ethnic group is famous throughout the whole of Russia for its skilled silver craftsmen who are commissioned from across Russia and abroad. 

 

Retired factory electrician Magomed Gadzhidadaev prepares a traditional Russian BBQ at his house.

 

Fish from the Caspian Sea for sale in Makhachkala's main market.

 

Young buys are taught wrestling on a beach by the Caspian Sea. Fighting is embedded in to the culture of Dagestan and it is renowned around the world for producing large numbers of great fighters from wrestlers to mixed martial arts. The Russian government in Moscow also sends large amounts of funding to help train such fighters.

 

Dagestan men and women dance on the dance floor during a wedding in an expensive wedding hall in Makhachkala. During weddings in Dagestan men and women sit and eat separately and only mix on the dance floor.

 

Local women sit outside and chat in the old town of Kubachi. The village inhabited by people of the Dargin ethnic group is famous throughout the whole of Russia for its skilled silver craftsmen who are commissioned from across Russia and abroad. 

 

Two women make bread on the cramped floor of her kitchen in a small house located on the slopes opposite the village of Theletl.

 

A local village shopkeeper waits for customers.

 

Muslim men from the village of Theletl take Friday prayer in the local village Mosque.

 

A local women picks weeds from her roof in the village of Theletl.

 

Dagestan native Patipat Gadzhidadaev talks to her friend on the phone in her house.

 

A man drives an old Lada car past a herd of cows.

 

A boy runs home at dusk at the village of Theletl.

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