Buynaksk is located at the foothills of the Greater Caucasus on the Shura-Ozen River, some 40 km south-west of Makhachkala.
Buynaksk was founded in 1834 as a fortified outpost near the ruins of medieval Balanjar. It was granted town status in 1866. In 1920 it was the centre of the ephemeral Mountainous Republic of the Northern Caucasus. On November 13, 1920, the government of the Russian SFSR declared Dagestan's autonomy during the congress of Dagestani people, which took place in Temir-Khan-Shura. In 1922 the town was renamed Buynaksk in honor of a revolutionary Ullubiy Buynaksky.
Buynaksk is situated in the North-Eastern part of foothill Dagestan and is an important junction of roads leading to the mountainous districts of the republic. That is why Buynaksk is sometimes called the “Gateway to the Mountains”.
In the past Buynaksk was one of the centers of revolutionary movement in Dagestan. Until 1922 it was the capital of the republic and bore the name of Temirkhan Shura.
Now Byunaksk is one of the important economic and cultural centers of the republic. It has grown particularly quickly after the earthquakes of 1970 and 1975, which greatly damaged the town. Due to the fraternal assistance of many regions and republics of the former Soviet Union it has been fully restored.
Now there are several large industrial enterprises in the town –a fruit canning combine, a unit-making plant, a footwear factory, a knitted goods factory, a tyre repairing plant, a meat-packing plant, etc.
In Buynaksk there are some places connected with its revolutionary past: the historical and revolutionary museum, the building which formerly housed a theatre, where in 1920 the autonomy of Dagestan was proclaimed, the monuments to the revolutionaries Uluby Buynaksky and Omarov –Chokhsky, monuments to the Heroes of the Soviet Union M. Gadzhiev and Yusup Akayev. There are also places connected with stay in the town of the great Russian artists Rubo, Gagarin and Aivazovsky, and the French write Alexander Dumas (father).