The Mausoleum of Karashash Ana
According to legend, the mother of the famous Sufi Khoja Ahmed Yasawi is buried here.
The Mausoleum of Karashash Ana is located in the ancient city of Ispijab (now known as Sayram) in the Turkistan Province. The mausoleum was originally constructed in the 13th century but had to be rebuilt several times throughout history, due to wear and tear over the years. The mausoleum we see now was built in the 19th century.
In the center of the mausoleum visitors can see the tomb of Yasawi's mother, lined with marble tiles. The mausoleum is crowned with a spherical dome, on which, according to some descriptions, a lock of black hair was once tied. After all, the name Karashash means “black-haired“ in Kazakh.
Karashash Ana's real name is Aisha Bibi. She was the daughter of Sheikh Musa and one of the most educated and respected women of her era. People from distant cities and villages came to her for advice. Karashash Ana was famous for her gift of healing; she also helped people interpret and understand their dreams. Although being from a wealthy and noble family, Karashash Ana has always been close to ordinary people, gaining fame and love far beyond the borders of her city. Karashash Ana is believed to be the symbol of motherhood. People come to her resting place to pray for healthy relationships or a long-awaited pregnancy.
3 kilometers (1.9 mi) northeast of the Mausoleum of Karashash Ana there is the Mausoleum of Ibrahim Ata, Ahmed Yasawi's father.
Useful tips 2021-2022
How to get there
Sayram, an ancient settlement which is now a rural locality of the city of Shymkent , is easily accessible from anywhere in the city by taxi or bus. The mausoleum is located in the old cemetery, near the intersection of Amir Timur Street and Yusuf Saremi Street. The nearest bus stop is Sayram Center. You can visit the mausoleum with a guide or explore it on your own.
Food and accommodation
You will need just a few hours to explore Sayram inside-out. Be sure to try the local cuisine, especially samsa (a crunchy pastry stuffed with minced meat) baked in a clay tandoor. In Shymkent, you will come across a large variety of hotels, hostels, and guest houses for any taste and budget.