Idea #638 – Visiting the citadel and the Ayaz Qala earthen castle
The lands between the city of Urgench, the capital of Khorezm province, and the Aral Sea have been inhabited for thousands of years by peoples who had created great civilizations. These civilizations could not disappear without leaving the testimony of their culture and today we know their culture quite well thanks to the excavations of the cities and fortresses and the study of the objects of material culture found during these surveys. Archaeologists call Kala or Qala these “desert castles”, the overwhelming majority of which are located today on the right bank of Amudarya, in Karakalpakstan, an autonomous republic that is part of Uzbekistan.
Ayaz Kala is located 40 km from Toprak Kala and consists of a fortress on a natural eminence. It was built in the fourth century AD, and was destroyed during the Arab invasion in the seventh century. The fortification systems are in very good condition. One can still observe the door of the fortress, and the multiple openings of firing practiced in the walls of mud. These are covered with vaulted galleries, some of which are still in elevation. Further on, on a small rock is the castle, in which a dozen gold statuette have been discovered. It is traditionally designated as the “home of the governor”, if it has existed… Below, the remains of a built complex are visible, probably a sanctuary.
Where is it ?
Ayaz Qala, Noukous, République du Karakalpakstan