Shusha fortress, when and how to visit?


Shusha fortress is a very famous touristic location. Every year 100 thousand people visit this location. Azerbaijan Tourism Agency is responsible for the location. 

You can purchase tickets online and on-site. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, it is advised to purchase tickets before visiting.

Here below some information about Shusha fortress.

Shusha fortress — the fortress walls surrounding the historical center of Shusha. The newly established castle town was called "Panahabad fortress" named after Panah Ali Khan who was the founder of the fort. In later years, the city was just called "Fortress". After a certain period of time, people named it "Shusha fortress" and later it was simply called "Shusha". The name of Shusha was probably derived from the name of Shushekend village which was near the location where the fort was built.

Molla Panah Vagif, poet and also the Vizier of Khan of Karabakh, personally supervised and controlled the construction of Shusha fortress. Hasan Ali Khan Garadaghi, the historian of Karabakh Khanate, commented that "Several buildings in Shusha, as well as Shusha fortress, was built under the direct supervision of Molla Panah Vagif".

The area where Shusha fortress was built is a mountainous plateau in the form of an amphitheater from the west with numerous hills and rifts. The highest area of plateau is 1600 m and the lowest area is 1300 m above sea level. At present, the territory of Shusha city consists of a plateau with a hill located lengthwise in its center. The architecture of Shusha fortress represents basic principles of architecture of the feudal period in terms of both the choice of location, structural planning, and the artistic appearance of the fort.

Shusha fortress had three main gates: Ganja Gate, İrevan Gate, and Aghoghlan Gate. The names of all these gates are often mentioned in historical sources, as well as in all the drawn plans of 19th-century Shusha.