The District of Gusar is an administrative unit in the northern part of Azerbaijan. Its administrative center is Gusar city. The district borders upon Guba and Khachmaz rayons of the republic and Dagestan (Russia). A distance from Baku - the capital of Azerbaijan is 180 kilometers.
There are several views about the origin of the Gusar toponymy. There is argued that the word “qusar” comes from the Russian language which means “cavalry warrior”. “Gusar” regiment was organized in this territory in 1783 – 1784. The district was named as “Gusar” according to the name of the regiment.
There is another view that the word "Gusar" derived from ancient Turkish tribe called “qus/ quz” and “ar” means male.
A. Bakikhanov also used the word “Gusar” in his book called “Gulistani – Iram”. He described the events took place in the village called Gusar.
Gusar is located in Eurasian continent, in the north-eastern inclination of the main Caucasus Mountain ridge. Mountains, among which is also Shahdagh Mount, take the great part of the rayon. Territory of the rayon occupies the north-eastern part of Azerbaijan. Gusar is a unique gate of the republic. Even in the ancient times the territory of the rayon took a good position on a junction of the main trade roads. It is 180 kilometers from Gusar to Baku.
The local relief within Gusar district consists of mountains and valleys. Mineral sources such as limestone, chalcopyrite, limonite, and marbleare common in the district. Gusar and Samur are main rivers of the Gusar District.
Gusar rayon is located far from sea routes. The most nearest seas to it are – the Caspian Sea (15 km) and the Black Sea (550 km). Area of the rayon consists of 1542 km2 and occupies 1,7% area of Azerbaijan. For size of its territory Gusar takes the 14th place among the other rayons of Azerbaijan. Length of the rayon from West to East is 84 km, but from North to South it is 35 km.
Extreme points of the rayon are: in North – Suduroba, in South – Tufan dagh, in East – Guzun qishlaq, in West – Bazarduzu summit. Length of the rayons borders is 225 km. Extension of the borders in kilometers: Dagestan Republic (with Akhtin, Dokuzpara and Mahammadkend rayons) 95 km, Gabala Rayon 25 km, Guba Rayon 70 km, Khachmaz Rayon 65 km.
Oak, peanut and hornbeam are often found in the forest areas. Natural herbs such as cranberry, sumac, hawthorn, wild grapes and blackberries are also grown in the forests. Wolf, fox, bear, boar, mountain goat and rabbit are particular for forests of the district. There is wild pigeon, quail, green duck and partridge birds in the fields and lakes.
The earliest sediments in the district belong to the Jurassic Period and count 135-145 million years. It is estimated that the life in Gusar district has been existing from the 2nd millennium B.C. Mahmudtapa, the hills of Monsar, the Govdushan hills, the hills of Hafla belonging to the Bronze Age, the hills of Kyzylgul and Agahan, the Halakhur hills belonging to the Middle Ages are ancient dwellings dating back to the 1st millennium B.C.
The district was originated in 1930, and called Gil Rayon with a center in Gil village. In 1934, the center of the rayon was moved to Gusar, and in 1938 it was renamed to Gusar Rayon. Administrative structure: Qullar Village, Urva Village.
Shaykh Junayd Mausoleum in Yargun (Hazra) village. There are also the remains of the walls of the fortress in the village of Anig belonging to the 13th century, Kohne Khudat and Huray mosques, belonging to the 18th century, Gil, Gyunduzgala and Hasangala mosques, belonging to the 19th century. There is a museum named after Russian poet Michael Lermentov.
Gusar is home of Shahdag Mountain Resort one of the biggest ski resorts in Caucasus and Azerbaijan's first and largest winter resort. Tourist facilities also include such rescreational areas as "Alpine Gusar", "Star Gusar", "Gayi Bulak", mountain tourism recreation area "Suvar" and Olympic Sports Complex.
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