THE SNAKE WALLS OF KHIVA
The inner city of the ancient Silk Road oasis of Khiva has been unchanged for centuries. Surrounding 40ft-high snake walls that writhe around the city have protected it for centuries, enabling defenders to shoot, spear, and pour burning hot oil on attackers from three sides.
Khiva’s labyrinth of narrow lanes adorned with blue and aquamarine tile mosaics is a living museum for you to explore. On the Oxus or Amu Darya River in deepest Central Asia, Khiva was ancient when Alexander the Great seized it in 329 BC.
It survived the depredations of Arabs in the 8th century, Mongols in the 13th, Tamerlane in the 14th. The Khanate of Khiva continued to flourish on the Silk Road until conquered by the Russians in the 19th. Today in Uzbekistan, it remains as the best-preserved of the ancient oases of the Silk Road, yet unknown to the outside world.
It need not remain unknown to you, however. We were just here last year, and will be here again soon. Join us and make Khiva a part of your life.(Glimpses of Our Breathtaking World #226 photo ©Jack Wheeler)