Shahrituz town is located in the south of Tajikistan, not far from the Afghan border, just 18 km south of Qabodiyon town. The town is well-known for its cotton production. It is a perfect base to explore some of the country’s most prominent historical sites, as well as the 44 springs of Chasma Chehel Chahor. Shahrituz is just another pleasant town built on standard Soviet plans; wide tree-lined streets and pretty parks. The Hukumat office is in the center of the town. The former Soviet hotel is being renovated.

There is a charming museum, alongside exhibits of artifacts excavated locally and agricultural implements are not only photos of local heroes of the Second World War, but also propaganda photographs of Russian heroes and heroines – the kind of exhibit that has been taken down in most Central Asian museums.There are three places of special interest near the town: Utapur Fortress, Khoja Sarboz mausoleum and Aywaj with remains of Nestorian Church


Around Shahrituz

Upatur Fortress

The 15th-century Utapur Fortress lies 10 km southwest of Shahrituz. Dating from the 1600s, Utapur is unique amongst forts in Tajikistan because it has a canal, which would have been supplied with water from Chashma Chehel o Chahor. It was not hit by the Red Army and is in a fair state of preservation. The fortress has impressive walls with some finely carved alcoves. The walls are fairly well preserved and the fine stone carvings show the skilled craftsmanship used in the fort’s construction.


Khoja Sarboz Mausoleum

Khoja Sarboz is written as Chodscha Sarbos is a mausoleum of the 11th-12th centuries preserved as a ruin made of adobe bricks. It is on the main road 4 km south on the road from Shahrituz, just before the turning to Khoja Mashad. Some walls remain structure belonged to the widespread early type of square one-room domed buildings in a form characteristic of southern Tajikistan.

Khoja Sarboz consisted of large adobe walls on a square base. The entrance portal was on the northwest side. The mausoleum represents a special South Tajik architecture school of the 11th – 12th centuries. The mausoleum was devoted to one of the seven holy brothers. The part of the name “chodcha” is a traditional Muslim honorary title in Central Asia. Some “chodcha” trace their ancestors back to the Prophet Mohammed through Fatima bint Mohammed and her husband Ali. Today’s ruin is exposed to the weather without protection, it suffers from erosion from strong winds and temperature fluctuations between hot summer and cold winter months. 

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