“Karlag” (i.e. Karaganda corrective labour camp of The People's commissariat of internal affairs – the NKVD) was one of hundred camps, which bore the collective name of GULAG (i.e. Central administrative board of camps) and were organized by Josef Stalin in the period of mass political repressions. Aside from “Karlag” there existed other camps on the territory of Kazakhstan, with the help of which the Soviet totalitarian system had been destroying people’s lives. However, among other camps “Karlag” stands out for its dimensions and significance.

The administrative center of Karlag is situated in Dolinka settlement (50 km to the south-west from today Karaganda). Administration over the whole camp system, which took an enormous territory (about 300 km from the north to the south and about 200 km from the east to the west) and had numerous departments on the territory of Central Kazakhstan, was exercised from here. Dolinka was also a place from which control over slave labour of political prisoners was maintained. Thanks to them, great food economy was created for the rapidly developing coal and metallurgy industry, agriculture and cattle breeding were developed, industrial giants were built, minerals were explored.
When in Dolinka you can visit “The Museum of memory of political repression victims”, located in the building of former Karlag Administration – magnificent construction with columns, built in soviet neoclassicism style, also known as “Stalin’s empire style”. Also, you can visit the former civilian hospital, “The house of officers”, which used to be a cultural centre for the local military men, as well as “The house of technics” where Exhibitions of achievements of the national economy were held. Here you can also find maternity hospital and child cemetery, also known as “Mamochkino”, where remains of thousands of babies are kept, as well as the building of chapel and numerous ruins of beaten cobworks, which were built many years ago by force of prisoners. Every now and then you can see rusty barbed wire, which can not but increase the gloomy atmosphere of the place.

Spassk memorial is situated 30 km to the south of Karaganda. Here, in the village of Spassk, foreign prisoners of war were kept after the end of the second world war. Not far from the village memorable signs had been erected by various countries, which citizens became prisoners of Karaganda camps. Among countries which have paid homage to its nationals are Hungary, Japan, Italy, Russia, Germany, Poland, Roumania, France, Finland, Lithuania, Philippines and the Ukraine. According to historian’s estimation, remains of 5152 prisoners of different ethnicities are kept in the cemetery, located near Spassk.

only museum - 3 hours - from 22$ (20 000 tenge for the group of 6 persons)
museum + Spassk - 5 hours - from 25$ (23 000 tenge for the group of 6 persons)