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Ancient Merv, Mary

Categories: Ruins, Tourist Spots
Inspirock Rating:
3.8/5 based on 45+ reviews on the web
Explore the mysterious ruins of the former Gate to Central Asia at Ancient Merv, the oldest and best preserved oasis city on the Silk Road, and a World Heritage Site. Spanning 4,000 years of human history, the archeological site has a walled area covering 20 ha (49 ac). Claimed to have been the largest city in the world in the 12th century, the ancient metropolis has layers of civilizations, including Persian, Hellenic, Arab, Seljuk, Mongol, and Khiva, with the most intriguing stone structure being the Zoroastrian "gawurgala," or infidel’s fortress. Located near the Murghab River some 30 km (19 mi) west of Mary, the site also features a well-preserved mausoleum of a Seljuk sultan. To get a greater sense of the history, hire a local guide, who'll help you make sense of these massive eroding pillars and abandoned stone structures. Add Ancient Merv to your Mary travel itinerary, and discover new vacation ideas by using our Mary vacation trip planner.
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  • Merv is a long and bumpy ride from Mary but definitely worth it. I am a history buff and had read an amazing book about Central Asia and its contribution to medieval knowledge. Merv played a central r...  read more »
  • The old legendary Merv on the Silk Road, is to visit. Although is not more particularly to see cultural heritage in UNESCO, much is scaffolded, but the atmosphere is just great. The huge ruins site conveys the mind-set of the magnificent city in the desert.
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  • My advice is to visit ancient Margush town, 3 hours driving form Mary. This is 5th ancient civilization. Spent one day to go there and you wont regret. 
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