Maghak-i 'Attari Mosque
Maghak-i 'Attari Mosque
4
Ancient RuinsArchitectural BuildingsReligious Sites
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Popular mentions

4.0
4.0 of 5 bubbles110 reviews
Excellent
25
Very good
59
Average
24
Poor
1
Terrible
1

Beatriz M
Düsseldorf, Germany5,677 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2022
The oldest mosque of Bukhara. Very interesting that it was excavated from under the earth. You can see that it is on a lower level than the rest of the city. Very beautiful details on the facade. I had read that inside there is a carpet museum or workshop but when I was there, there were renovations being done inside the mosque so it was not open.
Written January 4, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Andrew M
7,541 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2019
The Magok-i-Attari Mosque is the oldest mosque in Bukhara. It is located at the western end Mekhtar Anbar Street at # 55. It is now a carpet museum and the base is almost five meters below the ground level of of the nearby buildings, so can easily be missed if you are not looking out for it. It was built in different sections over time, so has a disjointed appearance. It may be best to approach from the southern entrance and walk down to the lower section where the 12th century construction techniques may be appreciated.

The main feature is the two columns and use of decorative brickwork. These simple designs of the Karakhanid era are strikingly different from the use of Timurid style blue glazed tiled which dominate the decorations of the ancient buildings of Bukhara. The arch has narrow columns on either side, and simple geometric patterns. Our favourite area was the sparse use of blue highlight above the arch, although quite a bit had fallen off. The roof used to be of flat design. This area also has plaques which state the century of construction of this section.

The eastern entrance was built between 1546-1547, by the Shaybanid dynasty. It was thought that an entrance at "street" level was required. The iwan had two narrow columns on either side, and these were decorated by six narrow arches and a blue dome. The entrance arch had double doors, above which a honeycomb design was done. There were also patterns on either side of the door. We were surprised at the lack of colour, as brown tiles were used on small sections on either side, above the door, but tiles were missing from both areas. The crown of the iwan is comprised of 21 blue sculptures which seemed to be flower shaped. Six of these shapes had fallen off.

The final improvements were in the addition of twelve domes to the roof, of which the two that are centrally located were raised. The base of the central domes was hexagon shaped and had screen windows for lighting and air circulation. This design was maintained in the finish of these visible domes, as both had six distinct sides. During the 17th century, the entire structure sunk into the sand. It was excavated in 1939 by V Shishkin, a Soviet archaeologist who also excavated the Ismael Somoni mausoleum. Extensive restoration work was done in the 1970's, and the building was reopened as a carpet museum after independence.

Historians have claimed evidence that the Sogdians built a "Zoroastrian" fire temple on the site many centuries before. The area was then used as a spice market in the 8th century. A mosque was first built on the site in the 9th century, but fire destroyed it in 937. It wasn't until the 12th century that the southern section seen today was built. From as early as the 10th century it was known as "the mosque in the pit" indicating that it was below ground even then. An archaeological site, is south of the mosque and a caravanersai a short stroll west.
Written October 14, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Joanne H
London, UK931 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2014 • Friends
Reviews for the Maghak-i' Attari mosque appear to be confusing this little ancient mosque near Lyab-i Hauz with the enormous Kalon mosque next to the minaret. They're incredibly dissimilar.

Maghak-i' Attari is, according to the Lonely Planet, a mishmash of 9th century and 16th century work. It's lovely to look at from the outside. If you go in you'll be charged UZS2,300 to look around a small and not very well signed carpet museum, which would be better if there was more information. It's probably not worthwhile, but cheap enough if you like old carpets and related items such as strips of carpet to decorate your yurt. Historically however it is worth looking at the mosque from the outside at least!
Written September 15, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Miriahm D
Boulder, CO1,080 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2014 • Couples
We came to Bokhara with the intent of seeing this very interesting site. I was especially glad to see that it has not been tiled-up,although surely it will be soon enough. This is one of the oldest, holiest sites in Bukhora. Under the mosque, are bits and pieces of a Zoroastrian place of worship, and even a Buddhist temple all of which was not discovered until 1930 as it was covered in sand up to the top of the mosque. Supposedly, in the 16th cen.it was even used by the Jewish community.
I wouldn't call it a carpet museum, but they do have a few small rugs for purchase, which we did at a reasonable price. The caretaker was fun to interact with.
Written February 9, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

HINA W
Islamabad, Pakistan7,355 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2012 • Family
This was the site of an ancient fire worship temple thousands of years ago. When the Arabs came they built a mosque here. The jews came to Bukhara as well, but they were not allowed to build a synagogue. So they too started worshiping here. after seeing so many rituals and prayers this place of worship has now been converted to a carpet museum.
Written July 23, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Bozeman-Dublin
Trim, Ireland10,876 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2023 • Friends
Now this is a real gem, Bukharas oldest Mosque and its a beauty. The original Mosque dates from the 9th century and is half buried to hide it from Chinngis Khan and his marauders.
Even that was not the first Temple on the site as before then it was home to the Zoroastrian Fire worshippers.
The Mosque visible today is a younger one but still dates from the 12th to 16rh century.
There are foundations opposite of an ancient Caravansarai.
On our visit it was not open as restoration works continue. No matter, it is beautiful enough from the outside and has such an I terstinf story that it is well worth a stop
Written May 2, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Brun066
Florence, Italy13,035 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2022
Abu Bakr Narshaki (ca. 900-960AD), author in the Samanid period of the volume "History of Bukhara" (Tarikh-i Bukhara is the original title in Arabic), writes that the Magok-i-Attari mosque derives its name from Persian word 'maghākī', which means "in a ditch" or "in a pit".
This implies that already at the time of its foundation the ground floor of this venerable mosque is strongly underneath the street level. This - together with the story of the mausoleum of Ismail Saman, half buried until the last century - authorizes us to infer that the soil in Bukhara is subject to strong silting phenomena.
These observations allow us to give greater faith to what is the popular tradition: that is, that the mosque was saved from the destruction of the city by the Mongols of Genghis Khan, as the population would have buried it. In essence, the inhabitants would have simply accentuated the "pit" effect.
In this way, the mosque is the oldest in Central Asia; its oldest part dates from the 9th century. The rest was then rebuilt in the twelfth century (so it is still prior to the Mongol era) and a part also in the fifteenth century. In particular, the beautiful portal overlooking the square dates back to the 12th century.
The rest of the mosque's name, “Attari”, means “scent merchant” or “spice merchant”, indicating that the part of the bazaar intended for the sale of this commodity was in the vicinity of it.
Today the bazaar has - so to speak - "entered" the mosque itself. As often happens in Uzbekistan, the building is in fact used as a carpet display.
Written October 13, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Pravine C
Gurugram (Gurgaon), India886 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2019
This historical mosque which is now a carpet museum is the oldest surviving one in Central Asia. It is believed that it was built in the 9th/10th century on the remains of a Zoroastrian temple from the pre-islamic era. Legend has it that the mosque survived the Mongol invasion by being buried in sand by the locals. It was found in the 1930s by archeologists and in fact only the top was visible when the digging began. Around the structure, a section of the excavations have been deliberately left in their original state.
The building as such is not impressive but it has a lot of history behind it. There is an entrance fee to enter.
Written September 5, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Marek P
Gdansk, Poland1,921 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2018 • Friends
Well, carpets "museum" is kind of interesting by itself but do not expect hundreds of carpets there. There are maybe 50 pieces as most and there are quite interesting explainations from where the designs were originated. For the designs lovers that may be interesting *** But the building construction is interesting by itself also. If you close your eyes your imagination may move you ages before. Just close the eyes and ...
Written August 30, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ricardo B
Miami, FL2,821 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2018 • Solo
This is the oldest Mosque standing in Bukhara and while it has a very important historical value it is a fairly plane mosque made of Sandy colour bricks in the heart of the old city
Written July 26, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Maghak-i 'Attari Mosque, Bukhara

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