The Ancient Settlement of Baskamyr
Baskamyr is one of many archaeological sites of the Karaganda Province.
The medieval settlement of Baskamyr, dating back to the 8th-9th centuries, was built by the Kipchaks – one of the tribes that served as the basis for the formation of the Kazakh nation. Modern-time excavations revealed a trapezoidal citadel surrounded by two lines of defensive walls. Archaeologists also found fragments of pottery and items made of wood and metal (iron, copper, and bronze). Archaeological research is still underway here. Unfortunately, the fortress is not preserved in its original state, it was restored in 1994.
In addition to the fortress, Baskamyr also features a necropolis, a guard tower, and a mine. The Baskamyr Necropolis lies to the south of the fortress. The guard tower is located a kilometer (0.6 mi) away from the settlement, in the Karegetas Hills. The tower stands at more than three meters (approx. 10 ft), it was built of stone slabs and clay mortar.
Useful tips for 2021-2022
How to get there
The settlement of Baskamyr is located in the Karaganda Province, 79 kilometers (49 mi) away from the city of Jezkazgan, 300 meters (328 yd) south of the Taldysay village, on the left bank of the Jezdy River. You can get to the settlement either with a tour group or on your own. If you decide to go on your own, we highly recommend using the services of a local guide. The settlement is quite hard to find and a GPS navigator may fail you in some remote areas. You can also get to Baskamyr from Jezkazgan or Ulytau by bus. In this case, ask the driver to stop the bus near the settlement and walk the remaining 200 meters (218 yd).
Food and accommodation
There are no cafes and shops near Baskamyr so you’d better stock up on food and water in Jezkazgan or Ulytau. You’ll also hardly find a place to stay for the night there so be sure to return to a town by nightfall.