Sights of Shymkent

Khoja Akhmet Yassawi

Mausoleum Khoja Akhmet Yassawi is located in Turkestan, Kazakhstan. It is the unique monument of the far and glorious past of Kazakh people. The mausoleum was built on the grave of the great poet Khoja Akhmet Yassawi in 1385. Yassawi poems, where he urges people to be virtuous, were included into the cultural legacy of Asian nations. After his death, the poet was honorably buried in a small mausoleum, and in 233 years, by the order of the commander and ruler Tamerlan, the large memorial complex was built on his grave. Memorial complex includes the huge rectangular building. Wall thickness is 2 m, and in central hall it exceeds 3 m. 35 rooms surround the central hall, a lot of domes are fixed on the roof, one of which 2.45 m in diameter, is the largest in Central Asia. The mausoleum interior is very beautiful as well: door to the poet’s table tomb is decorated with fancy elephant bone carving. It is the unique medieval sample that annually attracts people of the country and pilgrims from all over the world.


Mosque in Shymkent on Temirlan’s highway is the largest mosque in South Kazakhstan. Its grand opening ceremony took place in May 31, 2013, and construction was supported by the President of Kazakhstan Nursutan Nazarbayev and Sheik of the United Arab Emirates, Khalif ibn Zaid Al-Nahayan. According to the architects, the new mosque has become an embellishment of the regional center. Construction was financed by the Charity Fund Zaid ben Sultan Al-Nahayan. Area of the mosque in Shymkent is around 30 thousand sq.m., and the area of the main 2-storey building is 8,516 sq. m. Besides the main mosque building, built from the white stone and crowned with the huge white dome, the complex includes the ablution room, imam’s house and the boiling room. Over 700 trees and bushes were planted around the mosque. The mosque capacity is up to 5 thousand people.


Holy-Nikolsky Cathedral is located in the south-east part of Shymkent, South Kazakhstan. It was built in 1985 and is considered to be one of the latest temple complexes of this region. Holy-Nikolsy Cathedral was built from white brick and decorated with red tiles. Cathedral is decorated with 5 gold-plated domes, one central and 4 around. Arched windows finish the architectural design. Inside, the altar is painted with Bible stories and the Saints, the green tubs are distributed all round. The Sunday school has worked by the Holy-Nikolsy Cathedral for several years.

Temple of George the Victorious
the Victorious

Temple of George the Victorious is located in the village Koksayek (Georgiyevka), 40 km to the east from Shymkent, South Kazakhstan. Domed temple and the adjoining bell tower were built in 1882 at the expense of churchgoers. During Soviet times, the temple like others around the country, was closed, different institutions occupied it for a long time. In 1991, the Temple of George the Victorious was reopened for churchgoers by the Protoiereus Gennadiy Makarenko. In 2002, the temple was restored, some structures were replaced, and facade was renewed. At the entrance made from light pink brick, one can see the bell tower with a bell hanging on the arc. The temple is decorated with many icons of George the Victorious, for whose memory it was blessed. Interesting fact is that in the temple, as the local priest decided, they do not take money for candles.

Park of

Park of Independence is located in Shymkent, South Kazakhstan. It was opened in 2011, in the historical city part, and is the largest and latest park of the city. Opening ceremony was visited by the President Nursultan Nazarbayev. The park was a gift of city administration to residents on the occasion of 20-years of independence. In the Park of Independence, one can see the unique singing fountain, designed by the Chinese architect, many flower compositions, plants brought from Netherlands. The center of the park is provided with the monument performed as the construction with many metal elements. Total area of the Park of Independence with the arched entrance, makes up 82 thousand sq.m.


Airport is located on the western suburb of the city with the same name in Kazakhstan, 100 km away from Tashkent and 700 km away from Almaty. It is the only airport in Shymkent. International Ai Transport Association assigned to this airport the identifier CIT. Terminal provides regular internal and international flights. The airport was built in 1963. Terminal and the landing strip were commissioned in 1967. At present, the airport has only one landing strip with concrete covering, its length is 3,300 m. During modernization in 2007, the landing strip was restored and equipped with the modern landing system. In addition, they installed the weather equipment, enabling the airport to accept any types of the aircraft. Capacity of the airport is 400 passengers an hour, and total area is 5,380 sq. m.


Mountain Kazygurt is 40 km away from Shymkent in Kazakhstan, in the valley of Tien Shan mountains, and it is included in the Ugamsk natural province. This large range of mountains extends from east to west for 20 km, its highest point is 1,768 m. In ancient times, the caravan track ran in the saddle between two major peaks of Kazygurt. Mountain Kazygurt is made from limestone, thus it is the bottom of the ancient ocean, here you can find many solutional caves and springs. Slopes are covered with various trees and bushes: from semi-desert landscape to forest steppe and leafed forests. On the mountain, one can see the holy place Akbura with the mausoleum built in 1991. Women-pilgrims who is unable to give birth come here. One more sight of the mountain Kazygurt is the cross made from large stones. In ancient times, this place was used for ceremonies, and some people think that it is the mountain where Noah’s ark stopped.

Mausoleum of

Mausoleum of Arystan-Bab was built over the grave of Khoja Akhmet Yassawi, the spiritual advisor, famous preacher of Arystan-Bab. The building is used as the memorial mosque and table tomb. Mausoleum is 150 km away from the regional center of South-Kazakhstani region, the city Shymkent, not far from Otrar. At present, the building with the area of 35×12 m comprises two parts – 2-chamber tomb (Gurhana) and the memorial mosque, joined with the wide arched corridor. Arystan-Bab’s gravestone is placed in one room Gurhana, and the gravestones of his followers and pupils – Karga-Bab, Lashin-Bab and Hermet-Azyra are in the second room. The most beautiful and charming part is the portal, performed in the new architectural design with decorative elements. This architectural monument of 1982 is protected by the government. Today, annually, hundreds of pilgrims come to the Mausoleum Arystan-Bab, since it is the Muslim holy place and important shrine.

Mausoleum of

One-chamber mausoleum Mirali- Bab was built in the end of ХIХ century, on the grave of the holy man and great scientist Mirali-Baba. The cubic-shaped building is placed on the old cemetery, decorated with tin dome 9 m high. Mausoleum is in the center of the village Sairam, on the old cemetery, not far from intersection of two major streets. They say that before, to the north from the mausoleum, there was a small mazar of Mirali-Bab’s father Malik-Shah. Famous scientist Mirali-Bab devoted his life to studying ancient Muslim texts and extending the Islam, his contribution to Muslim development is enormous. The residential district in the village and the old cemetery of XIX century were named after Mirali-Bab.

Water Reservoir

Water Reservoir Chardarinskoye is located in Kazakhstan, in South-Kazakhstani region of the Republic. It was built in 1966, to collect water for irrigation. It is situated in the river Syrdaria, the second largest river in Central Asia, next to Kazakhstan-Uzbekistan border. The water reservoir is used for energetics, Shardaryn hydroelectric power station was built here. The water reservoir plays a huge part in irrigation of the large agricultural region around, which provides the channel Kyzyl-Kum for irrigation. In terms of tourism, shores of the water reservoir Chardarinskoye are ideal for the beach rest. There are more than 40 km of sand beaches, suitable for so called “wild” rest for tourists here. In addition, the water reservoir is very popular among fishermen. Here, they can catch the big catfish – over 100 kg, bream, carp, crucian carp and pike perch, and bass fish. Fishermen can sit either in backwater or in rapid flow, where Syrdaria flows into the water reservoir.