Day 26: Ayaz Qala

Newly independent from the Achaemenid Empire, the Ayaz Qala fortress was built by ancient Khwarazmian kings in the 3rd or 4th century BC to protect the fertile frontier from raiders on the edge of the vast expanse of the inhospitable Karakum Desert.  It was during this time that the Khwarazmians formed an alliance with Alexander the … Continue reading Day 26: Ayaz Qala

Day 93: Toprak Qala

Occupying the whole northwestern end of Uzbekistan, the semi-autonomous Republic of Karakalpakstan is the Uzbek version of the Wild West.  From what little is left of the Aral Sea in the northwest to the Golden Ring of Ancient Khorezm in the southeast, this region is, for the most part, a sparsely populated and arid wasteland. In … Continue reading Day 93: Toprak Qala