Mizdakhan Necropolis
Mizdakhan Necropolis
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Sammy J
Haifa, Israel87 contributions
Sep 2021
There is quite a large necropolis spread over area which can take some time to walk through.
There are several graves that are connected to mythology referring to a pre-Islam era, and some refer to the era following the conquest by Arabs.
The accepted story of the Khan's daughter buried in one of the mausoleums can be easily traced in google so there is no point to repeat it here. The general impression from the place is different than other necropolis seen in Samarkand for example. It is more ancient, more mysterious , somewhat more barbarian. It quite blends into the picture of many Kalas spread in the area of Northern Khoresm.
There was no admission fee at the entry. But we met a "volunteer"who told us his personal story about how he witnessed through the years soviet archeological authority stripped some of the important graves from valuable decorations, swapped gold carvings with color, took away other valuable materials while making the restoration and how the whole thing personally hurt him. So we quite tipped him but otherwise no charge was imposed. The place is good to visit while going to visit some of the Kalas, or may be during a way from Khiva or Urgench to Nukus or back. 90 min would be enough. Involves about 1-2 km of walking.
Written December 5, 2021
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.

Allen
1 contribution
Oct 2021 • Friends
The mausoleum of Mazlumkhan Sulu is located in the western part of the Khojeli region of the Republic of Karakalpakstan. From Railway Station (Vokzal) you can get in the Marshrut 11 (1 500 soums for each person), when you reach Gone Kala you should get off. Then there are some Marshruts to Khodjeyli. The fare is around 1,500-2,000 soums. In Khodjeyli, you can take a Marshrut to Mizdakhan. It costs between 1,500-2,000 soums.

On the surface of the earth of Mazlumkhan-Sulu, we see a portal and a dome, and the main part of the monument, as well as the central rooms, are located below, which can be reached through a vaulted corridor with a staircase. The central hall of the mausoleum is square with three deep and one shallow niche covered with an octennial dome. The surfaces of the walls and arches are paved with paired bricks with carved majolica blue “bows”. There is also a ground group of rooms, built after the eradication of the portal. According to the finds of coins, the construction of the mausoleum dates back to the first half of the 14th century. Behind the entrance to the mausoleum, there is a small square entryway, from which a corridor leading to the main hall descends slightly. Except for these artistic rooms, there are three rectangular rooms without any decoration in the mausoleum. Ornament rosettes combine blue, red, white, and black with ornamentation.

From Mazlumkhan-Sulu, 1.4 kilometers to the northeast there's Gyaur settlement Kala which is also located in Khodjeyli, Karakalpakstan. The ancient settlement of Gyaur Kala dates back to the 2nd - 4th centuries BC. The name Gyaur-Kala probably originates from the times of the Arabs, who call all non-Muslims "Geuhirs". Gradually, the word began to be pronounced as "Gyaur". The construction of this fortress aimed to be able to defend and control the important trade routes of the Amu Darya during the conversion to the southern borders of Khorezm. The colony was neighbored by a fortress wall cut by two rows of holes and surrounding a two-story shooting gallery. The walls were strengthened with towers 20 meters apart. Presently, the monument is a Historical and Archaeological Site for cultural and tourist trips.

The Shamun Nabi mausoleum is located 132 meters south and slightly east of the Mazlumkhan Sulu mausoleum, 1 km to the northeast of the ancient settlement Gyaur Kala in the Khojeli region, Karakalpakstan. Furthermore, he was a brave combatant and victor who was inapprehensive to challenge the local kings, who were called Gyaur - the infidel. Shamun, nevertheless, could not stand the shame of his fall and cut off his legs as a sign of remorse.

Fun fact: there is no toilet in Mizdahan. So my advice to you is not to drink so much. Otherwise, you will waste time looking for a toilet. I recommend you to visit these places for the reason that they are rich in historical memories.
Written January 17, 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.

John D
Whitchurch, UK21 contributions
Nov 2018
An extensive hillside graveyard, used for this purpose since the ancient city of Mizdarkhan was sacked by Amir Timur in the 14th century and still in use today. The mausoleum of Mazlum Khan Slu is not especially imposing from the outside but has fine decorated underground chambers. Other notable remains are the 11th century tomb of Caliph Yejereb and the 17th century mausoleum of Shamun Nabi (notablefor its 25metre long tomb.
Worth a visit if you are in the Nukus area.
Written November 14, 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.

JCY
Hong Kong, China44 contributions
Apr 2023 • Solo
I got there as part of local tour to Muynak. There was no road, no signpost, no phone or internet connections (I was using Ucell in Uzbekistan). Without a guide, it was really difficult to find the historical sites and the way back to the exit. I got lost when trying to return to the exit. Glad that there were some workers at the graveyard offering a helping hand, otherwise I would not have been able to get out of the cemetery before it got dark. Overall not a developed tourist spot and not recommended.
Written April 3, 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.

Aynura M
7 contributions
Oct 2021 • Friends
Let me tell you about how I spent my Sunday and give information about Mizdakhan-the sight that will definitely blow your mind.

I have always been into history and wanted to
explore ancient cities, so Mizdakhan was on top of
my itinerary lists as this place has tons of sites that
single out it from other tourist attractions.

We met at Cinnamon cafe with the rest of the students and two of our teachers. We had an opportunity to have a bit of a chit-chat with foreigners. That was great! Then we had lunch and we headed to Khojeli where the ancient and mythical city of Mizdakhan is located. It takes around 20 minutes to get there and on the way you can enjoy the scenery and take photos of picturesque nature. There is a place at the entrance to Khojeli where you can see the map of the city on a big wall. That was very unusual because the whole information about the city was crammed there. In fact, it was just the tip of the iceberg because when we reached our destination we were bowled over its real size. By the way, females visiting this place need to consider having an over headscarf because it is a cemetery and regarded as a holy place, having an over headscarf is an intact and preserved tradition of Muslim countries.

Having visited Mizdakhan the first time, I was both down in the dumps and eternally grateful. I thought deeply about what life would be like after death, about the purpose of living.

The first place we visited was the Mausoleum of Shamun Nabi which was erected in the XVIII century. "He was a preacher and man with unique power. During the war, when he cut off his leg the blood was spilling out for 30 meters. When he died, blood spilled so long that people were not able to step on his body. His tomb is very huge with a width of 1.40 cm and 30 meters in length. The mausoleum has 7 domes according to the number of his daughters. It means that daughters will cover their father's soul after his death." said Kenes Ilyasov who is caretaker and responsible for the cleanliness of the mausoleum and reads the Quran there.

It is said that the tomb of Adam Alaihissalam was erected there in the XIV century, even though it is situated in Jerusalem. Adam Alaihissalam lived and taught children in houses made of clay. It was only in the 1950 s when buildings made of bricks were constructed. Kenes Ilyasov says that it always rains during fast days- in Ramadan, so it will be easy for people who are fasting to visit this place. This is the reason why Mizdakhan is considered as an extraordinary and holy place. Unfortunately, he was the only person who we could talk to and he spoke only in the Russian language apart from his native language. One thing that I should mention is that there are no tour guides so I highly recommend you to have one if you do not know the local language. You can donate a little amount of money if you wish, in our case it was 7000 soums, as this number is regarded as a lucky number and in most places in Central Asian countries it's preferable to donate 7000 soums.

Next, we had a glimpse of the World Death Clock. According to the legend, every year a brick falls out from buildings and when the latest brick disappears the Day of the judgment will come. Mind that, some people say that it is only a legend and it is just to remind us to appreciate the time we have.

One more religious building that will grab your attention is named after Caliph Erejep and it dates back to the XI century. Erejep was a down-to-earth man and he taught people. Even, he could tell the personality of little children at first sight, and it is written in some books that his spirit continued teaching people after his death.

The most magnificent sight is the mausoleum of Mazlum Khan Sulu that dates back to the XIII-XIV centuries. It is a far cry from other sites in Mizdakhan, everywhere is steeped in mysticism and history. What makes it different is- its division into two parts, above ground and underground. The building is spacious and cross -shaped, covered with turquoise blue tiles. When the sun shines on the mosaic walls with blue streams the building is much more attractive. Also, it is well-known for the legend about a princess and an architect. Beautiful Mazlum Khan was the daughter of khan( ruler) and many rich people loved her, but she was in love with a simple architect who could not expect to marry her. The princess refused all the suitors and her father's patience was pushed to the limit. Finally, he said that he would marry his daughter to someone who would build a high tower in a night. The architect was very inspired and satisfied the ruler's condition but could not get his consent. Being driven round the bend, the architect jumped off the minaret he had built himself and Mazlum whose heart was broken followed him. The repentant governor ordered the tower be destroyed and two lovers be buried together.

The last and the most adventurous site in Mizdakhan is Gyaur kala which is situated in the northern part of the city, between Nukus and the border with Turkmenistan. Gaur kala means citadel of the infidel. It was built in IV th century BC when Zoroastrianism was still ruling and is believed as the center of this religion because some of the Avesta texts were written there and gathered in 21 books during III century BC. According to the remains of craft workshops, and Islamic mosques people lived there during XII and XIV centuries too. There is a wall in the shape of five fingers but only three of them have remained. The vanished castle is located on top of high hills, so you will be bouncing off the walls when you visit it once.

On a final note, I would mention that there are several inconveniences of visiting this city too. For example, the climate in Karakalpakstan is dusty but Mizdakhan is much more undusted as it is a historical place. Therefore, it is better to go there during dry seasons like September or October and have on comfortable clothes. One more drawback is, there are no facilities for travelers such as shops or toilets. But you can find all of these facilities within 30 minutes walking distance from our tourist attraction. There are really nice cafes at the center of Khojeli where you can have lunch and you have to taste a patir which is inexpensive and very delicious.

All in all, history is of paramount importance. By learning about the causes and effects of different events in history, people can learn better ways to deal with conflict and I personally think that it is much better to learn from the mistakes of others, not from ours, therefore people can choose more positive courses of action among nations and individuals. Moreover, it teaches us to be satisfied and thankful for whatever we have now. If only we look back at the way our ancestors lived, we will stop complaining about our lives and start appreciating everything we have. So, there are a number of things that could be done to change the state of disrepair of the historical sites written above.
Written January 17, 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.

A380fan
London, UK1,163 contributions
Sep 2019
I paid 100,000 som for a car to drive me over and wait from Nukus. The site is a bit bizarre, with the important buildings surrounded by graves. There was one beautiful mausoleum, plus the ruins of the madrassa. It was nice to wander around for 30 minutes. No entrance fee.
Written September 22, 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.

mpq_domanski
Krakow, Poland73 contributions
May 2019 • Friends
Cemeteries tell us much of history and traditions of the countries we visit and Mizdakhan is no exception. Very interesting place to visit and see especially in the afternoon with low sun light. Part of monuments is beneath the earth.
Written May 23, 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.

Gad N
Tel Aviv, Israel175 contributions
Sep 2018 • Couples
A huge burial city that combines remains from the Zoroastrian period through Muslim-era mausoleums to modern burial.
This is a place used for pilgrimage and a number of legends are connected to several buildings on the site. The place is impressive in size and the nature of its various tombs.
Of course there are those who charge entrance fees (for tourists only), but I did not receive any ticket or receipt.
The place has only Russian-language guiding signs.
The site is located about 25 km from Nucus and is more or less on the road leading to another attraction in Karakalpakstan - the Muynak Shipyard.
Written October 19, 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.

porchy
Milton Keynes, UK314 contributions
Apr 2019 • Couples
We went there with a guide who explained everything about the place. Ruins of what once was the 2nd largest city of Khorzem in the 4th century BC. Was inhabited up to the 14th C. Remained a s up to the 20th century.
Written April 21, 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.

Peter R
Maroochydore, Australia2,419 contributions
Oct 2018 • Couples
This is an amazing place to visit and see some fabulously old tombs from the 4th century. You just wander around, with a guide if possible, and make sure that you see the restored Mausoleum of Mazlum Khan Slu and the seven domed Mausoleum of Shamun Nabi. You can see how the bodies were buried. Our guide was an archeologist which was fabulous for the information needed for this site.
Written October 5, 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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Mizdakhan Necropolis - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)