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June 2011
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Aysha Bibi and Babazhi Katun Mausoleums

Aysha Bibi Mausoleum

This is a relatively short trip into Kazakhstan from Bishkek, but would make a challenging day-trip.  It is probably better thought-of as a stopping point on the way to Turkestan or Tashkent.  The mausoleums are about five hours from Bishkek (including border formalities to get into Kazakhstan – your wasted time may vary).

According to Wikipedia (, Aysha Bibi is an 11th or 12th-century mausoleum for a noble woman located in the village of Aisha Bibi, 18 km (11 mi) west of Taraz, Kazakhstan on the Silk Road. It is locally famous as a monument to love and faithfulness.”  See the whole Wikipedia page for much more detail on the legend surrounding the mausoleums and the constructions, themselves.

Bishkek to Aysha Bibi - click to enlarge

The route is simple and easy.  From Bishkek, take M39 west, the same road that, turning left in Kara Balta, takes you to Osh.  In this case, though, you just continue on straight to the Kazakh border, and then on to the city of Taraz.  The route runs almost due west, dropping about 600 feet at some points in Kazakhstan, and then climbing it again. There is a loop around Taraz to the north (right).  At about 185 miles, you come upon the complex on your left.  You can get the .gdb file here.  Instructions for using it with a GPS are here, and with Google Earth, here.

Besides the mausoleums, there is, according to Wikipedia, a sacred limestone cavern across the road.  We did not find this, perhaps because we didn’t know to look for it.

Mausoleum Detail (and beautiful girls)

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