27 June 2006


Central Asia: Silk Road Revival Grows As More Sites Protected

There are lots and lots of unexcavated places in Central Asia, and others that have been partially excavated but not protected very well. (And there are some that had substandard restorations done, but at least there is something to see.) Krasnaya Rechka (Navikat) in Kyrgyzstan is one of those places; some Buddhist artifacts were found there and taken to the Hermitage, but not much has been done since then. Otrar is a site in Kazakhstan that could use a lot more work. And there are other places in the Chuy Valley that are less than an hour from Bishkek and could help Kyrgyzstan's tourism industry since Kyrgyzstan's only tourist reputation is for outdoor activities, not seeing anything ancient.

Obviously Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan have nothing to match Merv and Buhkara and Khiva and Samarqand, but there are places here that are being ignored. I hope we'll be able to visit some of these other places (and Merv and Bukhara and Khiva and Samarqand) sometime.

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