Nukus


This city is the starting or final point while traveling throughout Uzbekistan. Many tourists from CIS countries pick it as a starting point because the trains from Saratov go across this city and for passenger trains from Almaty it serves as a final station. Passenger planes to Moscow regularly fly from the international airport of Nukus. Notwithstanding the bad ecological condition and the location of the city in the heart of the desert Nukus is the oasis with green boulevards and lots of flower-beds. There are many hotels in the city that are ready to serve you according to their ratings. As for peculiarities of Karakalpaki cuisine, the city is the only place where you can enjoy jugeri kurtuk (dumplings jp for dishes from beef), djiz (the dish from mutton) and soups from soured milk of mares.

The city is only 75 years old, but the city rarely has much grown. Archeological digs prove that it is settled on an ancient cultural layer of the IV century BC and the IV century AC.

I. Savitsky made an important contribution to the research of the origins of Khoresm oasis. With the idea of preserving the unknown culture, he left his apartment in downtown Moscow and moved to Nukus. The fanatic idea and the titanic capacity for work made Igor Vitalyevich a legendary man. Thanks to his-efforts in 1966, he launched the State Museum of Arts of the Republic of Karakalpakstan. Savitsky was its director till his death.

State Museum of Arts of the Republic of Karakalpakstan named after I.V.Savitsky

State Museum of Arts of the Republic of Karakalpakstan named after I.V.Savitsky

State Museum of Arts of the Republic of Karakalpakstan named after I.V.Savitsky is the treasure-house that holds information about the cultural heritage from the III century BC up to present days. The expositions of the museum include objects of material and artistic culture of ancient Khoresm and national applied arts of Karakalpaks. The department of fine arts is a great artistic discovery. It is the spot for not only the national artistic school of Karakalpakstan, but also for the works of many founders of painting culture of Uzbekistan and the multinational collective painters who lived and created in Central Asia at the beginning of the XX century.

For the short period of time the collection of Nukus museum included 90 thousand expositions. The following fact doesn't have its analogies in the world practice of museum collections.

Nukus is the starting point to the Golden Ring of Khoresm, to the historical places of this ancient country.

Archeologists, in a hundred thousand hectare territory of Khoresm oasis, find the trails of human activity everywhere. It seems this place hides some kind of magic kingdom.

Toprak-Kala (I-IV centuries AC)

Toprak-Kala

The settlement Toprak-Kala is situated in the Ellikkalin region of Karakalpakstan. It is a rectangle area surrounded by fortress walls that held the shape of 8-9 meters height barrage.

One of the quarters was full of temples that were built during the entire period of the settlement's existence. Most parts of the palace were reception rooms and sanctuaries decorated with wall-paintings.

The North-East part of the palace consisted of 8 long rooms blocked with arches. Some of them somehow remained to present day.

Ayaz-Kala (IV-II centuries BC)

Ayaz-Kala

It is located 41 km to the North-East of Beruniy city. The settlement holds a shape of quadrangle, the sides of which are oriented to the lights of the land. It is set on a knap and three sides are surrounded by cliffs. The remaining walls are constructed from raw bricks.

The historians assume that the origins of Ayaz-Kala can be traced back to the IV-III centuries BC but it never functioned as a fortress. Moreover archeologists didn't find the remains of any human activity in this place, but they recovered great amount of unutilized construction material. Despite the fact that the fortress remained for many years it seems to be left recently. Even now, with its severe grey-pink walls with arrow-shaped slots, threatening towers, round and lancet portal arches look majestic.

Big Guldursun (IV-III centuries BC, XII-XIII centuries AC)

Big Guldursun

Guldursun is situated 20 km to the East of Beruniy city.

It is a huge boundary fortress of Khoresm that was erected on the basis of an antique fortress. It is improper rectangle of which the size is 350x230 and the sides are oriented to the lights of the land.

During the excavations inside of the fortress, the archeologists found many things from ceramics, bronze articles and decorations, antique and medieval coins.

Mizdakhkan (Gyaur-Kala Khodjeyli) (IV century BC, XIV century AC)

Mizdakhkan

The Ancient Mizdkhkan archeological complex is located on three hills in the South-West suburbs of Khodjeyli town. It includes the fortress Gyaur-Kala, Shamun Nabi mausoleum, Mazlumhan Sulu, Khalfa Erejep, Caravan sarai. During the archeological dig, they found unique assuar burials, coins, household items, and glass and highly artistic golden things.

Perhaps this is the most magic and legendary complex of Khoresm.

There is a legend about the Mausoleum Mazlumkhan. The beautiful woman Mazlumkhan and an architect fell in love with each other. This architect built the highest tower for her. And when Mazlumkhan's father prohibited him to get married to his daughter he jumped out from the tower. The girl did the same.

The legend about the caliph Erejep says that this mausoleum is the burial place of the holy man who strongly propagated the religion of Islam at its earliest stage. The Remaining walls testify to its hugeness. According to the legend Adam's grave is placed here. One of four walls from the mausoleum was destroyed. Near the entrance there are piles of baked bricks. As the legend says each year one baked brick falls down from the wall and the day the last brick drops is doomsday life on Earth will be over. The walls of the mausoleum are rather high, and thus doomsday will not come yet and this world clock will show historical time for a while.

Chilpik (Shilpik) (II-IV, IX-XI centuries AC)

Chilpik (Shilpik)

Ring-shaped religious building Chilpik is located 43 km from Nukus on a 35-40 meters towering conic hill.

In the II-IV centuries it was built as Zaroastrizm temple. In the IX-XI centuries people used it as a signal tower.

Djanpik-Kala (IX-XI, XIII-XIV centuries AC)

Djanpik-Kala

The settlement is situated 6 km to the South-East of Karatau village, on the South-West branch of the Sultanuizdag's mountain. On the east side of the settlement there is a citadel.

During digs the archeologists recovered many finds taken to this area from the East and West (China, Egypt, Russia, Europe, and India). The settlement served as a port. From the suburbs of Djanpik-kala you can see Baday-Tugay nature preserve.