Ichan-Kala: the city-museum under the open sky

     As previously reported, an information tour was held for media representatives and subjects of the tourism industry of the country to Karakalpakistan and Khorezm region, the third day was devoted to the study of the historical Ichan-Kala complex in Khiva, Khorezm region. The organizer of the media tour was the State Committee for Tourism Development of the Republic of Uzbekistan.
The legendary Khiva, the tourist “business card” of modern Uzbekistan, is a living heiress and the last capital of the great civilization of ancient Khorezm. And although the main tourist sites here are quite young (XVIII-XIX centuries), the city itself has a very solid age, and its fate is inextricably linked with the emergence, formation and decline of the powerful state of Khorezmshahs.

Khiva is located in the west of Khorezm region in the heart of the Kara-Kum desert on the left bank of the Amu Darya. In different temporal eras, it was called differently, and Khorasmiya and Ichan-Kala – the historical inner city of Khiva in Uzbekistan, surrounded by powerful walls, became the first World Heritage site in Central Asia. The fortifications and palaces, mosques and madrasahs, mausoleums and minarets erected over the centuries (the most ancient monuments of architecture belong to the 14th century), caravanserais and baths turned Ichan-Kala into a unique city-monument. Officially, the status of the city-reserve Old Khiva received in 1968.

What is Ichan-Kala? In ancient times, Khiva, like other eastern cities, was divided into three parts: the fortress – Kunya-Ark, the suburb – Dishan-Kala and the city – Ichan-Kala. Today, Ichan-Kala is an open-air museum – the old part of the city, enclosed by a fortress wall and turned into a state historical and archaeological museum-reserve.