Idea #609 – Exploring the remains of the Balasagun city in Kirghizstan
Balasagun is an ancient Sogdian town located in present-day Kyrgyzstan, in the Chu River Valley between Bishkek and Yssyk Kul Lake. It was founded by the Sogdians, a people of Iranian origin, and became the cradle of the Karakhanid dynasty at the end of the 9th century. It quickly supplants Suyab as the main political and economic center of the Chu River Valley. The city began its decline after the Mongol invasion in 1218, and ended depopulated in the fourteenth century. Recurring earthquakes are finally right.The Burana area was the western end of the city. The last vestiges are preserved, including the remains of a minaret called “Burana tower”, as well as a field of petroglyphs and tombstones, the balbal.
Two staircases, exterior and interior, allow access to the top of the tower which originally reached 45 meters in height. Over the centuries, several earthquakes damaged it, including more powerful in the nineteenth century, which destroyed the upper half of the tower. It now only measures 25 meters. The site is inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.According to the legend linked to the tower, “a witch warns a king that his daughter would die when she was 18. To avoid this fate, the king built a high tower and sequestered her daughter, preventing her from seeing anyone. With the exception of the maid who brought her food, the princess grew up and became a beautiful girl, but one day a poisonous spider, hidden among the food, bit the girl who died at the age of death. eighteen years old “.
Where is it ?
Old Balasagun, Bourana, Kirghizistan