"Exquisite beauty" Top 5 Page for this destination Shah-i-Zinda Tip by TheWanderingCamel
Shah-i-Zinda, Samarkand: 26 reviews and 77 photos
The entrance stairway at the Shah-i-Zinda leads the visitor up to a narrow street lined on both sides with mausolea. They are in varying states of repair and restoration and by the time you have visited all of them your eyes are quite dazzled and confused by the colour and decoration so that it is hard to remember which tomb is which and what you have actually seen. However, apart from the tomb of the Living King himself - at the far end of the complex, there are two mausolea of particular note - the Shadi Mulk Aka and the Shirin Bika Aka, built to hold the graves of female relatives of Temur. The first of the buildings here of that era, they are also regarded as the finest by far.
The Shadi Mulk Aka (1372) contains the tomb of Temur's niece and one of his sisters. Here the tiles are almost like lace - they are so beautifully carved in deep relief. A second mausoleum opposite holds the tomb of another sister of the ruler. This is the Shirin Bika Aka, built in 1385, the portal showing an entirely different style - one that was to become the pattern for future decoration everywhere. True mosaic and incised patterns allow for elaborate and exquisite calligraphy and floral designs.
Both are notable for retaining their original decoration and both are just as beautiful inside as out.
Directions: These mausolea stand opposite each other beyond the roofed passages and the first two buildings at the top of the steep Staircase of the Sinners.
More Reviews (31)
TheWanderingCamel's Related Pages
Have you been to Samarkand?Share Your Travels