The resting place of Sufi Saint Hoja Ahmed Yassawi
on the Silk Road
Turkestan lies in the southern part of Kazakhstan. It has long been a stopping post and trading point on the ancient Silk Road. Today it is one of the first parts of a new 21st century Silk Road from China to Europe.
Proudly it hosts a superb modern University, The Hoja Ahmed Yassawi University. Here in honour of one of Kazakhstan's greatest saints and treasures, it continues what the 10th century Sufi master willed happen. To educate the people both poor and well off to become their own free thinking, spiritual beings in a profane world.
The town of Turkestan holds the mausoleum of Yassawi built by Timur the Great - Tamberlaine as we known him in the West. This ediface, unfinished still displays the very best of the skills of the builders, stonemasons and exquisite mosaic work the Turkic and Arab world in Central Asia is renowned for.
Turkestan sits at the centre of an area of Kazakhstan yielding many sacred and beautful centres of its rich and spiritual past. Yassawi's legacy of enlightenment is apparent everywhere. It is no wonder it is considered in the Islamic world as proudly bearing the name "Second Mecca'. Attracting millions of pilgrims each year the town, like Yassawi, shows its full modesty through hospitality and humility.
The landscape exudes many sacred spots where out of the desert miracles have grown, waters have risen and great sages have trod.
The Hazrat Yassawi Museum, recently expanded, displays the whole history of this amazing part of the world. With the other cities on the Silk Road nearby over the border in Uzbekistan such as Bukhara, Samarkand and Tashkent, complement Turkestan's rich history.