The historical city of Khiva which has long been an important oasis in the midst of Karakum Desert is now a major tourist place of Uzbekistan. The main attraction of this city is Itchan-Kala which was historically a citadel.
History Of Khiva
According to legends, Khiva was founded by Shem, one of the sons of Noah when he dug a well in the current inner town of Itchan Kala after he dreaminzifatravel.com about 300 burning torches lined up that showed him the path when he was lost in the desert. Somewhere around the 16th Century, Khiva emerged as the main city of Khwarezm characterized by fertile area in the middle of deserts of Central Asia. By early 17th Century, Khiva became the capital of Khanate of Khiva.
Sightseeing Places InKhiva:
The fortress town of Itchan-Kala is the main point of attraction in Khiva. It is surrounded by ten meters high brick wall which guarded the town. Along with the modern city of Khiva, it gives an impression of a town within a town. Itchan-Kala is divided into three parts: Kunya-Ark fortress, Dishan-Kala, and Itchan-Kala, the town. Much of the historical sight is concentrated in the inner fortress town of Itchan-kalawhere there are more than 60 historic buildings. Some of the notable ones are:
Kunya Ark Fortress
inside Itchan Kala, it was the accommodation place for the royal Khans and their family members and dignitaries.
TashHauli Palace Complex (Stone Palace)
this was also a royal palace, but bigger in size with brilliantly decorated interiors.
Kalta Minor Minaret
this turquoise-tiled massive stump is an incomplete, yet gorgeous and sophisticated structure of Itchan Kala.
located in the center of Itchan Kala, it is unusually built in that it has no high portals, entrance arches and domes.
a complex of a minaret and a madrasah, it is one of the most beautiful sights in Itchan Kala.
, situated in the outer fortress of Dishan Kala, it has a number of courtyards and gardens along with chambers and halls.
this is a cultic religious center and necropolis of Khiva’s patron Pahlavan-Mahmud.
centrally located in Itchan Kala, it was built using slaves captured by Shergazi Khan who later killed Shergazi for not fulfilling his wishes.
Allakuli Khan Madrassah
it was Khiva’s largest religious school in the past and accommodated a giant library.
this is situated in the eastern gates of Itchan Kala and is one of the oldest madrasahs in Khiva still preserved in its pristine condition.
Madrassah Of Muhammad Amin-Khan
Located opposite to the gates of Kunya-Ark, it is one of the biggest madrassahs in Khiva. It was built in 1876 by Seyid Muhammad-Rahim II, also known as Feruzshah, who was a renowned poet at that time.
A center of art and craft, it was only founded in 2004 to revive the lost art of embroidery that was once popular in Khiva. Situated within a stone’s throw from the Carpet Workshop, the artisans still follow the traditional old practice of creating cushions, bags, and other items.
Today even though Itchan Kala is an open air museum, it is not deserted and locals still live in the inner town. It is recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site and is what attract tourists to Khiva.