Journey to Tajikistan (part 4): My beautiful city

Photo courtesy Wikipedia


Our good friend, Manizha, agreed to write a series of articles taking us “inside Tajikistan”.  It is truly a gift to have a “little-known” country opened up through the eyes of a native.  We are very grateful to Manizha for her beautiful stories.

TAJIKISTAN is one of the republics of Middle Asia. It is a country with a rich history and culture, beautiful nature and a very delicious cuisine. Tajikistan is a mountainous country. Almost 95 % of the territory of Tajikistan is occupied by mountains. The incredible beauty of the mountains is sung in our poems and songs. The fresh air, stormy rivers and clear lakes, fields of tulips and foxtail create a special atmosphere that you will never forget.

     I live in the North of Tajikistan in Khujand city. Khujand is a very ancient city. It is 2500 years old. Khujand is located on the banks of the Syrdarya River (in ancient times it was called Yaxart). The Great Silk Road passed through the city.  This is why the city has always been an important strategic and economic center.  In the 4th century BC the troops of Alexander the Great entered Khujand and founded a citadel. The city was called Alexandria Eskhata (Alexandria Extreme). The ruins of the citadel have survived to this day.

     In the 13th century the city was destroyed by Genghis Khan’s troops but soon revived. The city was bravely defended by the commander Temurmalik but they had to retreat to a small island. After a long battle the island was captured and soon Temurmalik was killed. Today this island is very small and sometimes I look at it from my apartment window.

     Now Khujand is the second capital of Tajikistan, the economic and cultural center of the country.  In Khujand there is much light industry.  For example there is much manufacturing of cotton and silk.  There are also many sewing factories that make uniforms for hospitals and other workers.  

    It is an ancient city with a young soul, they say.  Here is one of my favorite songs about my beautiful city.  I hope you like it too.  —Manizha

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