Serakhs near Ashgabat
Serakhs settlement, located in the vicinities of Ashgabat, stands just where the city bearing the same name - a major trading point of the Great Silk Road (between Nishapur and Merv) - used to stand. It was located in the center of a small oasis in upstream part of the river Tedzhen. In the middle of the first millenary B.C. there emerged the first settlement surrounded by a pise wall; now this site is called "Old Serakhs". With the introduction of Islam the city became one of the significant commercial centers and its skillful local architects became well-known all over Central Asia.
In the 11th -12th centuries Serakhs was known as one of the major centers of Sufism - a mystical branch of Islam. The city had several Sufi schools governed by famous and honored sheikhs. The schools enjoyed great popularity among educated people.
Today "Old Serakhs"" is declared a state historical and cultural reserve. Four brick mausoleums have survived on the territory of the settlement. The most well known of them - a jewel of the city - is Abul - Fazl mausoleum also called the mausoleum of Serakhs - Baba (Serakh Elder"). Yarty - Gyumbez mausoleum (the 11th century) is also worth visiting.