For the first time, the International festival of folklore and traditional culture "Mountaineers" was held under the auspices of UNESCO in 2012. The Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation, the State Russian House of Folk Art, Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Dagestan, the National House of Folk Art and the administration of Makhachkala took part in the organization of the festival. The festival was sponsored by the President of the Republic of Dagestan and the participation of the Russian Commission for UNESCO, the Committee of the Intangible Cultural Heritage at the Dagestan branch of the Russian Commission for UNESCO.
As part of the festival the following events took place: "Poetry of folk costume", photo exhibition dedicated to folk art and traditions, the exhibition-fair of handicraft "Caucasian Bazaar", festival of ashug art "Sing ashug!" As well as gala concerts, folk clubs and offsite concerts in the city of Makhachkala, Izberbash, Caspian, Derbent. During the festival was held a conference "Dialogue of Cultures", dedicated to the preservation and development of the diversity of national cultures.
The festival was attended by creative teams from Azerbaijan, India, Iran, Latvia, Slovakia, Thailand, and the regions of Russia - Kabardino-Balkaria, North Ossetia-Alania, the Chechen Republic, Astrakhan and Saratov regions. Also, the festival participants included about 40 folk ensembles and performers from Dagestan.
Guests of honor deigned the festival with their presence: the President of the International Council of Organizations of Folklore Festivals and Folk Arts (CIOFF) under UNESCO, Dr Udomsak Sakmunvong (Thailand); founder, CEO and artistic director of the French Association of cultures and traditions, Jean Roche (France); President of the State Russian House of Folk Art, Elvira Kunina.