Ancient Termiz

Photo by Jarek Pokrzywnicki.

Ancient Termiz is part of the Tentative list of Uzbekistan in order to qualify for inclusion in the World Heritage List.

Ancient Termiz (also included in the serial nomination “Silk Roads Sites in Uzbekistan”) is a serial nomination including eleven proprieties around the modern town of Termiz. There are ruins of Buddhist temples (1st to 4th century), Islamic Mausoleums (9 to 16th century) or minaret (12 th century), Greek-Bactrian, Sogdian or Mongol fortifications (3rd BC to 9th century). One monument (Oq-Ostona Bobo) is standing individually on the TWHS, and is 150 km north from Termiz.

Map of Ancient Termiz

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The coordinates shown for all tentative sites were produced as a community effort. They are not official and may change on inscription.

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Jarek Pokrzywnicki

Polska - 22-Apr-20 -

Ancient Termiz (T) by Jarek Pokrzywnicki

Site visited in April, 2010. Public transport - marszrutka, shared taxi, taken from Samarkanda.

Area rich of historical monuments but traces are scattered in many different places all around the city and in the outskirts. Termez was inhabited from prehistorical times with its heydays during Buddhist era 1-3 century AD. All that ends with the invasion of Genghis Khan troops in 1220, that razed the whole city. Buddhist structures together with other ruins and later rebuilds are the parts of ancient Termez today. More recently Termez was a witness of withdrawal of Russian troops from Afganistan (1989).

Describing all places I will use names from official UNESCO website, with official translations or names that were noticed on the spot. They can be grouped according to the direction:

North-west of central Termez:

QORATEPA, or Kara-Tepa, located around 1 km from Fayaztepa, to the south-east, during my visit impossible to reach as it was located near the border with Afganistan (security reasons), visible from Fayaztepa, but I was advised not to take photos. Google coordinates: 37.278321, 67.182692

FAYAZTEPA, or Fayoz-Tepa (Uzbek), 3 rd century Buddhist archeological site, recently beautifully restored with Japanese help (UNESCO/Japan Fund-In-Trust Project), monastery complex with clay stupa with the starcase in the middle. Looks like all buildings were built using clay (adobe). All restored / reconstructed up to around 2 meters from the ground, so full layout of the complex is visible. Google coordinates: 37.286510, 67.187689

ZURMALA MORTAR, or Buddhist Stupa of Zurmala, ruins of Buddhist monument from 1-2 centuries, not restored, if you approach the city from the north it is one of the first visible monuments of ancient Termez, Google coordinates 37.263855, 67.232382

KHAKIM AT-TERMIZIY COMPLEX, or Hakim at-Termizyi Complex, group of monuments from 10-14 centuries, recently restored, build with bricks, Google coordinates: 37.265926, 67.189300

North-east of central Termez:

QIRQ-QIZ COMPLEX or Kyr Kyz (Forty Girls) Fortress (Uzbek Saroyi), castle form IX-X centuries commonly linked with the legend of 40 maidens, partly restored (façade), build with clay (adobe), Google coordinates: 37.266651, 67.290104

SULTAN-SAODAT COMPLEX, or Sulton Saodat majmuasi (uzbek) - recently restored, build with bricks (2002), located close to Kyr Kyz Castle. Google coordinates: 37.263140, 67.309369

KOKILDOR KHONAQO, or Kokildor-Ota Khanaka (Xonaqohi) recently restored, complex of Muslim monuments Google coordinates: 37.260435, 67.298525

Far beyond Termez:

DJARQURGAN MINARET, or Jarkurgan minaret, located 38 km from Termez, in in the village of Minor, 12 century minaret, mainly not restored, so only partly preserved (22 m meters out of 50), Google coordinates: 37.476656, 67.396299

OQ-OSTONA BOBO, or Mausoleum Astana-Baba – the place seems to be located in Turkmenistan, so maybe joint inscription, Google coordinates: 37.906619, 65.109749

KAMPIRTEPA, or Kampyrtepa (ancient city), Aleksandriya na Okse, remnants of ancient city from Hellenistic time until 2 century AD, Google coordinates:
37.411320, 67.028314

As an addition to all those sites there is a good Archeological Museum (descent modern building) with findings from Neanderthal, Stone Age, Bactrian, Sogdian, Khorezm, Kushans or Early Islamic periods. Descriptions also in English. Ideal place to get familiar with history of the whole area.

Practicalities. I took a car (taxi) from the street in Termiz and managed to see the most of Termez places. It is important to specify the places you want to see and the price (depending on the places and waiting time). Most of taxi drivers knows the area and monuments but it is good to have a map on your own. I paid 23 thousand som for full day driving (including waiting time in the monuments) – that time it was around 11 USD.

I stayed overnight in Ramz Hotel – simple, modern accommodation, Google coordinates: 37.234968, 67.276298, 21 thousand som (around 10 USD for a single room).

Ticket to Archeological Museum – 2000 som (1 USD).

Places on the photo, bottom left, than clockwise: Fayaz Tepa, Sultan Saodat Complex, Kyr Kyz Castle, Hakim at-Termizyi Complex

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Full Name
Ancient Termiz
Archaeological site - Near Eastern
2014 Incomplete - not examined

Ancient Termez

2013 Incomplete - not examined

2012 Incomplete - not examined

2008 Revision

Includes former TWHS Khakim Al-Termizi (1996), Djarkurgan's Minaret (1996-2005) and Kyrk Kyz (1996-2003)

2008 Added to Tentative List

Unesco Website: Ancient Termiz

The site has 10 locations

Ancient Termiz: Kara-Tepa (T)
Ancient Termiz: Fayoz-Tepa (T)
Ancient Termiz: Buddhist Stupa of Zurmala (T)
Ancient Termiz: Hakim at-Termizyi Complex (T)
Ancient Termiz: Kyr Kyz Fortress (T)
Ancient Termiz: Sulton Saodat majmuasi (T)
Ancient Termiz: Kokildor-Ota Khanaka (T)
Ancient Termiz: Jarkurgan minaret (T)
Ancient Termiz: Mausoleum Astana-Baba (T)
Ancient Termiz: Kampyrtepa (T)
WHS 1997-2022