The name comes from Persian باغچه سرای "bāghche-sarāy" which means "the Garden Palace". Its former name was Müküs, derived from Armenian Mokkʿ (Armenian: Մոկք) region. The name of the city in Armenian: Մոկս, Moks. In Kurdish: Miks, derived from the Armenian. The word "Mokk'" in classical Armenian language means: "the place of the magic". According to the legend,
Amenap'rkich ("Wholly Saviour") abbey that was nearby Moks, has the grave of a magician by name Gaspar. Probably name of "the place of the magic" or just "Mokk" is connected with this mysterious personality. But scientific sources say that in the Urartu era there existed the Moxene tribe and
Moxenne, so the names Mokk' and Moks originated from this tribe's name.
The word Bahçesaray is compound of bahçe ("garden") and saray ("palace"). Bakhchysarai in Crimea has the same name.