The land of mysteries and discoveries

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February 2, 2015

The land of mysteries and discoveries

land_of_mysteriesKarakalpakstan is rich in spectacular places that could draw interest of many. First of all, it is nature, six architectural and 18 archeological sites. Not all of them have yet become available for tourists, but the development of tourist infrastructure make them attractive for those, who love traveling. People living here are popular for their sincere hospitality, who carefully preserve unique traditions and customs. And among locals there are long-livers.

Beruniy district of Karakalpakstan is completing the construction of the Center for the Study of Beruniy Heritage, and beautification of the adjacent park. The objects are to be a part of the tourist route, traveling along which it would be possible to familiarize with the culture of Uzbekistan.

Northwestern territories of Uzbekistan are becoming more attractive for visits of tourists. Last year, Urgench airport opened for flights from major cultural centers of Europe – Rome, Paris, and Milan. Usually, after visit of main landmarks in Khorezm, including Ichan Kala and a few more monuments, tourists went to Bukhara. Yet, in recent years another route has started gaining popularity. It is an excursion to archeological monuments and cultural heritage of Karakalpakstan.

Almost unexplored by foreign tourists, Karakalpakstan has a lot to offer. These include archeological and architectural monuments in Turtkul, Beruniy, Ellikkala, Amudaryo, Khojayli, Kungrod and Karauzyak districts, the Ustyurt Plateau, Aralkum got formed on the territory of retreating shores of the Aral Sea, the Savitsky Museum of Arts, and unique traditions and customs.

Currently, only two settlements are ready to receive tourists. The heart of hospitality becomes Ellikkala district, as it has six archeological monuments, along which yurt camps are set.

The district center has an open-air museum featuring models of all archeological monuments located in the territory of the district. All the riches of Karakalpak culture are represented in the capital of the region, Nukus, one of the major cultural centers in modern Uzbekistan, and infrastructure made it possible to host a large number of guests.

Quite promising is also Beruniy District, which could be named the gates of Karakalpakstan, if one enters the territory from Khorezm Region. Tourists do not stop in this unique and rich for exploration region for the present. It is because all those 25 possible tourist attractions are not yet ready to receive guests.

“Our district could also draw the interest of tourists, because it is the birth place of a world-famous Medieval scholar, Abu Rayhon Beruniy, whose scientific works are still in demand,” first deputy of head of the district administration, director of the ‘Descendants of Beruniy’ Fund, Hamid Bayjanov said. “Today, we implement large-scale work to join the list of major tourist centers”.

The first stop for tourists becomes a square, laid in 1997, but for various reasons left unfinished. It is located in the territory next to the remains of the wall of the ancient fortress Katkala. It has a memorial complex, the symbolic burial place of Beruniy. Hamid Bayjanov says that under the architectural construction there is a soil brought from Afghanistan, the burial place of the outstanding ancestor. Center for the Study of Beruniy Heritage, which under construction now, also neighbors the territory. It becomes a unique cultural object that will have premises for activities of scholars, show room with exhibits telling about life and activities of the great thinker, and hotel. People could escape burning sun under the shade of trees planted about 15 years ago.

Construction works in the complex are to be completed by 2016. Currently, the district implements beautification works in streets, roads and public facilities. New sports complex is scheduled for construction. Drinking water supply of the population will be improved as well, including gas and electric power. On the basis of the former sanatorium will be constructed a modern hotel with high services.

Simultaneously, projects on beautification of other places are working out and getting ready for implementation, including the monument of Abu Rayhon Beruniy, installed in the middle of 70s of the 20th century.

Very soon the beautification works start in the territory of the remains of the fortress Pilkala. The fortress Kuzykkala dating back to the 1st – 4th centuries is also to become an architectural object available for tourists. The territory of the fortress has tugay forests and natural water reservoirs. Yurt camps appear here soon, and active tourism offered.

Residents of Beruniy district intend to put on display a temple of the ancient settlement Kazakly-yatkan. The Internet is full of information on recent discoveries of archeologists made within several years. The wall painting was the first to discover, which depicts portraits of ancient Khorezmian rulers. Last year, inscriptions were found, deciphering of which, according to scholars, allows to determine what and who depicted on the wall paintings.

“We have experience in beautifying the places of cultural heritage. One of the first works was the complex of Sulton Yayis Baba Burial Vault, which is the stop for many passer-bys,” Hamid Bayjanov informs. “We intend beautify the whole of the territory, and carefully preserve all historical sites in the district”.