Shymkent – Turkestan Pilgrim tour (3 nights – 4 days)
“The mausoleums of of Khoja Ahmad Yasawi in Turkestan, and his teacher Aristan bab in Otrar, are particularly important centers of national spirituality for the Kazakh people.
Thanks to Azret Sultan, the city of Turkestan became a spiritual capital not only for the Kazakhs but for all Turkic people.”
Day 1: Welcome to Shymkent
– Arrival from Istanbul to Shymkent by Atlas Jet at 05.55 .
– Picking up by Turkish speaking guide
– Check in to the hotel, breakfast, rest until noon.
– Transfer at 12.00
– Lunch at local restaurant
– Excursion to Sayram city.
Sayram (named Ispijab in encient times). The city celebrated the 3,000th anniversary of its founding in 1999 and located in the suburb of Modern Shymkent. It was located on the Silk road caravans route connections and became well developed city at those times. It was the place where Ahmed Yassawi and other famous Islamic figures were born and because of its convenient geographical position, served as the main base for the new religion of Islam to spread. Now it is a place where many mausoleums are located especially Mausoleums of the Azret Sultan parents – Ibrahim Ata and Karashash Ana. Our tour will start from these mausoleums.
An other important place of Sayram is Abdul Aziz Baba Mausoleum. Abdul Aziz Baba was a leader of Arabic forces who brought Islam to Sayram area in 766 A.d. Pilgrims come here for help in averting the ‘evil eye’.
The next stop will be Museum of Sayram where you will see the history and development of Sayram and Southern Kazakhstan.
– Dinner at local restaurant
– Returning to the hotel in Shymkent
Day 2: Turkestan
– Breakfast and check out from the hotel
– Transfer to Turkestan. Arrival, starting tour from Government Historical – cultural Museum of Turkestan
– After excursion transfer to Local restaurant
– Excursion to Khodja Ahmad Yassawi Mausoleum.
– The Khoja Ahmad Yassawi (also called as Azret-Sultan) historical and cultural reserve includes Turkestan and Kultobe cities, a necropolis, mausoleums (15th-17th cc.), Dzhuma mosque (19th c.), restored Big Hilvet (12th с.), chilakhana (room for rituals and prayers) (14th c.),
bath-house (17th-19th cc.) and a fragment of the original citadel wall (19th c.) with gates (18th-19th cc.)
Out of the 802 historical and cultural memorials of South Kazakhstan region, 528 are monuments of archaeology, 42 historical monuments, and 226 architectural monuments.
The most interesting archaeological monuments are related to the epoch of the Karahanids – 9th-12th cc. It was a time when on the Great Silk Road flourished the famous city of Otrar, where for several dozen years a large archaeological excavations has been carried out, and which is now a part of the historical-cultural reservation ‘Otrarskiy oasis’ and an interesting tourist attraction.
Here is a fine historical museum, with a panorama demonstrating the taking of the city by the Mongolians, and also a monument of the 12th-20th cc., Mausoleum Arystan-baba, dedicated to one of the sufi saints. The Mausoleum attracts a number of pilgrims from all over Central Asia.
– Dinner at the local restaurant
– Check in to the hotel, overnight
Day 3: Otrar encient city, Arystan baba Mausoleum
Arystan Bab was a mentor, teacher of Khoja Ahmad Yassawi. By tradition all pilgrim tours should lay along his Mausoleum which is located about 60 km from Turkestan close to Otrartobe village and ancient city Otrar.
A legend states that Emir Timur ordered the construction of a mosque on the site of Khoja Akhmet Yassawi’s grave but all attempts were unsuccessful. Timur was then told in a dream that in order to have success he should first build a mausoleum over grave of the mystic Arystan Baba who lived in XII century.
After that excursion continues to ancient Otrar city.
Otrar city which also was called as Farab was settled in the I st centure. It was located on the Great Silk Road and played very important role in Central Asian history and was a political centre connecting Kazakhstan with China, Europe, Near and Middle East, Siberia and Ural. City was ruined several times by Mongolians, Dzhungars, but completely was destroyed in XVI century. It is one of the historical monuments which could be found in such a great condition. Here you can see ancient walls, canalization pipes, water well, walls details and plenty of bows and jugs.
– Have packed lunch
– Transfer to Shymkent 150 km.
– Check in to the hotel
– Free time and Dinner at local restaurant
Day 4: Excursion to Taraz Aysha Bibi & Babaja Khatun Mausoleums
One of the most beautiful mausoleums of this region – the monument of love and faithfulness – Aisha Bibi Mausoleum which is located 18 km from Taraz in Zhambyl region.
According to legend, the mausoleum was built by a Karakhanid Dynasty ruler for his beautiful fiancée Aisha-Bibi, a daughter of Sufi poet Khakim-Ata. In this composition used light terracotta floral ornament which go back to the art of Andron and Saks tribes. Aisha bibi also is a part of a complex. 10 metres away there is an other mausoleum by the name of Babaja Khatun who was according to the legends helper of the youg girl during her life and was looking after her grave after the death. The history of Aisha-Bibi and Babaja-Khatun mausoleums is rather a legendary sphere than a historical one.
– Transfer to Shymkent
– Dinner at the restaurant
– Overnight at the hotel
Day 5: Transfer to the airport