'''Konye Urgench''' is a city in
The town was called
Urgench from the 10th century AD onwards and is now called Konye Urgench (Old Urgench), as the inhabitants moved to modern [[Urgench]] in [[Uzbekistan]] in the 17th century.
, the ancient ''Gurgandzh'', was built on the crossing of two major caravan routes from the South to the Volga in the Northwest and from the West to China in the East. From the 1st century AD onwards Konye Urgench was an important trade center on the Northern Silk Road leading to the Caspian Sea and Russia. Around 1000 ''Emir Mahmum'' unified the country of ''Khwarezm [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Khwarezm]'' and made Konye Urgench its capital. In the 10th cent. Urgench was the capital of the powerful Khwarezm state which occupied the whole area of the Amu Darya delta in Northern Turkemnistan and Western Uzbekistan.
Konye Urgench became one of the centers of the Islamic world and was called "the capital of thousand wise men". Great scholars as ''Al Biruni (Abu Reikhan Biruni) [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Al_Biruni]'' and ''Avicenna (Abu Ali Ibn Sina) [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Avicenna]'' lived here. After its conquest by the Mongols in the 13th century, the city became an important trade center again. The famous Arabic traveller ''Ibn Batuta [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ibn_Batuta]'' described Konye Urgench as the 'biggest among the Turkish cities with broad streets and splendid bazaars'. The main part of the magnificient monuments in Konye Urgench were built during the reign of ''Kutlug Timur'' and his wife ''Tyurabek-khanym''. In the 14th century the city was destroyed by the troups of ''Timur [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timur]''.
Konye Urgench was declared UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005.
* '''Nedjameddin Kubra Mausoleum''' was built in the 14th century It is considered as the holiest place in Konye Urgench. ''Nedjameddin Kubra'' lived in the 12th/13th centuries. He was a famous religious teacher
and founded an important Sufic order . He was killed by the Mongols . Please inquire locally if you are permitted to enter the mausoleum.
* '''Konye Urgench Museum''' in the modern ''Dash mosque'' ( US$1, 8am to 1pm, 2pm to 4pm closed Tue). Some rooms contain ethnographic exhibits including a pottery workshop and carpet looms.
The most interesting monuments are on both sides the Ashgabat road about 1 km south of the town. Admission is US$ 1, camera US§ 0,70, open from 8 am to 6pm.
* '''Turabeg Khanum Mausoleum''' is one of Central Asia's most beautiful buildings. It was built in the 14th cent by ''Kutlug Timur'' for his wife ''Turabeg Khanum''. It's portal with a height of 21 meters high and a breadth of 14 meters is richly decorated with majolicas. The central building measuring about 100 square meters is also ornamented with colourful tiles. The interior of the dome (height: 20 meters) shows 365 stars symbolizing the days of the year, 12 open and 12 closed arches symbolize the hours of day and night, 12
bogger arches symbolize the 12 months and 4 big windows the four seasons.
* '''Kutlug Timur Mínaret''' was begun in the 11th century and
ginished in the 14th century unter ''Kutlug Timur''. It was the minaret of the main mosque in [[Konye Urgench ]]. With a height of 60 meters, it is the highest minaret in [[Central Asia]].
* '''Sultan Tekish Mausoleum''' is the
mauseoleum of ''Sultan Tekish [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sultan_Shah_of_Khwarezm]'', shah of Khorezm in the 12th century, who conquered great parts of what is today northern [[Iran ]] and northern [[Afghanistan]]. The dome was richly decorated with blue tiles and geometrical patterns.
* '''Kerk Mollah''' ''(Hill of the 40 mullahs)'' is one of the best known places of pilgrimage in [[Turkmenistan]].
* '''Il-Arshan Mausoleum''' is Konye Urgench's oldest surviving monument. It contains the grave of ''Il Arslan [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Il-Arslan]'', the father of ''Sultan Tekish''. The dome in the form of a
tente and the facade of the monument with a pattern of bricks are the firts of this type and were prototype for buildings in [[Samarkand]].
*<eat name="Bedev Cafe" alt="" address="Azadi köcesi" directions="" phone="21044" url="" hours="7am to 9pm" price="US$ 3" lat="" long=""></eat>
*<sleep name="Chapayev Guesthouse" alt="" address="" directions="on the road between the town and the Uzbekistan border post, not signposted" phone="no phone" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="US$ 2.50" lat="" long="only recommended if you have your own transport"></sleep>
There is no comfortable hotel in [[Konye Urgench]].
Therefore it is better to stay overnight at [[Dashoguz]].
There are frequent buses and marschrutki to [[Ashgabat]] (US$4, 10 to 12 hours) and to [[Dashoguz]] (US$ 0.50, 2 hours). Taxis to [[Ashgabat]] cost about US$6 per seat or US$ 24 for the whole car, to [[Dashoguz]] US$ 0.75 per seat or US$ 3.50 for the whole car.
* Wikipedia article Konye Urgench [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Konye-Urgench]