The Proto-urban site of Sarazm comprises the archaeological site of the ancient city of Sarazm. About 5000 years ago it was "the largest metallurgical center of Central Asia engaged in export".
The city is believed to have been revived as a mining point to collect from nearby sources of turquoise. Established no later that 1500 BC, the city also served as an important regional agricultural and copper production center.
It was abandoned after the arrival of the Indo-Iranians, around 2000 BC.
Martina Ruckova - May 2016
The ancient site of Sarazm is to be found about 15 kms west off Penjikent in north-western part of Tajikistan. Travelling from Dushanbe, it takes about 4-5 hours to reach Penjikent and let me tell you, even though you might think otherwise, that's one of the best roads to be found across the country. The site itself is well-marked, behind a small fence and the excavations are protected by a roof. Some basic information is provided, but not very much. Info booklet can be bought in the Rudaki museum in Penjikent. I really missed a local tour guide here who would give us some context of the culture and the excavation works, as, for example in Cattalhoyuk in Turkey. Some of the artifacts that have been excavated from the ancient Sarazm can also be found in the Rudaki museum, so I'd recommend visiting that first.
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Full name: Proto-urban site of Sarazm
2010 - InscribedReasons for inscription
2007 - DeferredTo "Explore further the values and significance of the property" and add more protection to the site
The site has 9 connections.
World Heritage Process
- Slow Starters 1992-2010 : 18 years