Khujand is a city in the north of the Republic of Tajikistan, the administrative center of the Sughd region. Syrdarya at an altitude of more than three hundred meters above sea level. Today, the Artist is the largest industrial-industrial and cultural center of Northern Tajikistan and the second largest city of the republic with a population of 155,400 people (2009). Representatives of more than 20 nations and nationalities live here.

Today Khujand is an important transportation hub, a political, economic, cultural and scientific center of the country. On the territory of the city there are the airport and the railway station Khujand, located 11 km from the center of Khujand, in the village of Gafurov.
Currently, the official name of the city in Russian is Khujand. Since the entry of the city into the Russian Empire until 1936, it was called Hojent.
Then, on January 10, 1936, the city was renamed Leninabad in honor of V.I. Lenin. And already on February 26, 1991, after the country gained independence, its historical name was returned to the city, and it officially turned into Khujand.
History of Khujand
On a par with such cities as Bukhara and Samarkand, Khujand was one of the most famous civilizations of the centers of science and culture of Central Asia, a city that since ancient times attracted attention with the hospitality of its inhabitants, talented scientists, artisans and craftsmen. In historical sources, it is known from the 7th century.
The city attracts the attention of tourists for its numerous medieval citadels, as well as the mosque-mausoleum of Sheikh Musleheddin (17-18 centuries).
Khujand has a rich centuries-old history. In the past, he was called the “Crown of the World” by scholars, poets, and writers.
Initially, the city was founded during the time of King Kayanid Kaikubod, and flourished and became even more beautiful under the rule of the Persian king from the Achaemenid dynasty, Darius. After the conquest of Varazrud (Central Asia) by Alexander the Great, the city became known as Alexandria Eskhata (Extreme Alexandria).
In their works, medieval historians, geographers and travelers mention Khujand as a city of generous, generous people, with developed science and crafts, fertile fields and gardens, and refer it to the “fifth best climate”. According to scientists and historians, since ancient times, gold, silver, copper, mercury, tin and other valuable metals have been mined in the mountains around Khujand.
Representatives of the Oli Khujand dynasty enjoyed special respect and reverence in the East – people from Khujand who invariably held high government posts, the leaders of this dynasty, with their intelligence and knowledge, generosity and foresight caused a deep response in the hearts of the people. That is why the great poet of the 12th century, Khokoni Shirvani, says with sincere love: “One can talk endlessly about Khujand, about his people – talented poets, sweet singers and gentle dancers, famous scientists and unsurpassed artisans. But it’s better to see once. ”
The Great Silk Road passed through the territory of the city, therefore the city had a permanent connection with the world civilization, developed economically and spiritually. Khujand merchants exported to other countries the best products of local artisans, while returning from their travels enriched with the achievements of science and civilization of almost the entire world. However, on the other hand, all this kindled the interest of the conquerors to this prosperous corner of the earth. The streets and squares of the city saw the Greek Macedonians, the Arab invaders, the hordes of cruel Karakitais and Genghis Khan, experienced the cruel tyranny of Timur, Sheybanids, Ashtarkhanids. Many turbulent events swept over the city for 25 centuries, but, nevertheless, its image did not fade in the darkness of the millennial; over time, he only became younger and more beautiful.
The greatness of the city in the history of world civilization is indicated by its chronicle pages associated with the names of prominent scholars and poets of the East, such as Abumahmudi Khujandi, Kamoli Khujandi, Makhasty, Koshifi, Toshkhuji Asiri, the famous traveler Hoji Yusuf, composer and singer Sodirhon Hofiz. Outstanding statesmen were also the legendary Tehmosi and Temurmalik. The city often suffered from the raging elements, it was almost completely destroyed by floods, but it was revived by the labor of the people. On the territory of Khujand there is a Khujand citadel, built in the early Middle Ages and functioning until the beginning of the 20th century.
After the accession of Central Asia to Russia in 1866, Khojent became one of the centers of the revolutionary movement on the territory of Tajikistan. Here began to emerge social democratic organizations, the national liberation labor movement began to develop actively. Following Petersburg and Tashkent in November 1917, Soviet power was established in this region.
In the 1950s and 1960s, Khujand was actively expanding its borders. The city stepped onto the right bank of the Syr Darya, throwing two bridges across it. The right bank part included an extensive park area with beaches, sports facilities.
Year after year, Khujand became more and more beautiful, rapidly acquiring the appearance of a large, industrially developed city. In 1986, he celebrated his anniversary – the 2500th anniversary.
Historical sights of Khujand
Khujand fortress. This fortress was once part of the fortification system of the city. It was founded in the 6th – 5th centuries BC. During the archaeological excavations carried out by the North Tajik Archeological Complex Expedition, it was established that the Khujand the fortress was first surrounded by a bulk shaft, and later a wall of considerable thickness of raw material. The city and the citadel – the components of the ancient Khujand, had separate fortress walls, surrounded by a wide and deep moat filled with water. The remains of these fortifications were found under the central part of the left-bank Khujand, they surround the territory of the ancient city of 20 hectares.
With the development of the economy, trade, government and population growth, the city gradually grew. In the 6th – 7th centuries a new fortress was erected. Khujand of the Middle Ages consisted of three main parts: the citadel, shahristan and rabad. The citadel was located on the bank of the Syr Darya at the gates of the rabad.
The medieval Khujand fortress was considered one of the most fortified in Central Asia.
In 1219-1220, during the invasion of Genghis Khan and his troops, a 25-thousand army was sent to siege the city with 50 thousand Central Asian captives. The heroic defense of the Khujand fortress and the island not far from it on Syrdarya under the leadership of Timurmalik became one of the most significant events in the history of Tajikistan and the entire Tajik region.
As a result of the Mongol invasion, the Khujand fortress was destroyed. According to historian Hofiz Abru, at the beginning of the 15th century, the fortress lay in ruins. According to Zakhiriddin Babur, at the end of the same century, the fortress was restored and was the residence of the local ruler.
Mosque Masjidi Jami. The mosque was built in 1512-1513. Ivan, consisting of 30 columns, adjoins the eastern wall of the winter hall, also multi-column (20 columns) and enters the courtyard of the mosque.
The long southern wall of the mosque with no apertures is facing Shark. Only to the right on the edge of the wall is the entrance device of the darvoza-hona with a deep peshtak – portal. The arrangement of the columns in the mosque is subordinated to the modular grid: six rows of four columns (30 modular squares) are repeated on the aivan, and in the winter room five rows of columns of four. The two middle columns along the northern facade of the ayvan are carved to the full height and carry an elevated part of the architrave with massive stalactites that preserved the remains of the painting. At the entrance and over the mihrab, the three wooden squares of the ceiling were painted, but the paints darkened and partly fell off. The walls are covered with a good carved decor, mainly geometric motifs. Both doors of the winter hall are distinguished by fine delicate carvings. The roof of the mosque is flat earthen with clay-adobe plaster. The foundation on which the walls of the building stand is lined with baked bricks. The courtyard of the mosque from the east and partly from the north is bounded by one-story hujras.
In the northeastern part of the courtyard there is a minaret with a traditional lantern, decorated with arched openings, from where a beautiful panorama of the city opens. The entrance portal, facing Shark Street, is distinguished by tiled facing and carved ganch panels on the facade. The high portal represents only the front decorative wall made of burnt bricks, complemented on the north side with raw buildings on two floors with a wooden quince on the top.
The mosque, in general, has a surprisingly harmonious image and is a magnificent example of the synthesis of decorative art and the construction culture of Khujand.
Monument to Kamol Khujandi. The monument was erected in 1996 in honor of the 675th anniversary of the poet’s birth. It is located on the square of the Stars of Khujand. The background shows wings that personify the sanctity of a person and at the same time mark the wings of inspiration for poetry. The face of the poet is drawn to the place of his birth and toward the sunset. The height of a seated figure is 3.5 m, wings – 5.5 m.
In order to show the image of a strong, spiritually rich person who has made many trips, the sculpture was specially created barefoot, in accordance with the existing canons of beauty of the human body, embodied in sculpture.
In addition to its ancient attractions, Khujand can offer tourists and some types of active tours. Not far from Khujand is located the famous Kairakkum reservoir. It arose from the construction of a hydroelectric power station on the Syr Darya River. The mild climate, extraordinarily beautiful nature, and the clear surface of the man-made lake make it possible to relax here actively: these are boat trips, windsurfing, fishing, excursions to archaeological sites.
The favorite place of pilgrimage for alpinists is the Ak-Suu region, located near Khujand. This mountain range is characterized by the beauty of virgin nature and extraordinary mountains, built of dense granite with small “hooks” and cracks, which often exceed 5000 meters in height, for example, Ak-Su (5355 m).
All the city gates of Khujand are open for guests day and night, the tired in this city will rest, the merchant will not fail, and the opening own business will find worthy partners here.
So, welcome to ancient Khujand!