Citadel walls in Khujand, Tajikistan.

© Matyas Rehak/Shutterstock


Top choice in Tajikistan

The city’s top sight is the citadel, the reconstructed corner of which is open to visitors. From the top of the 10th-century ramparts, the disintegrating baked-earth walls suggest hints of the seven gates and 6km of fortifications that were rebuilt in the 13th century and which mark the site of Alexander the Great’s original settlement. The citadel's military history continued into recent times when, in 1997, 300 people died in battles between Uzbek warlords and government troops.

The main section of the fort remains occupied by the army but much of the eastern wall has been rebuilt and now houses the historical Museum of Sughd Province and the Museum of Archaeology & Fortifications. A few quality souvenir shops are dotted in and around the citadel museums and along the adjacent rose gardens of Komil Khojandi Park.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Tajikistan attractions

1. Museum of Archaeology & Fortifications

0.02 MILES

The reconstructed eastern gate houses the Museum of Archaeology & Fortifications, which has some interesting 19th-century photos and plans of the original…

2. Historical Museum of Sughd Province

0.03 MILES

Built within the reconstructed southeastern bastion of the city wall, this museum houses a fascinating set of modern marble mosaics depicting the life of…

3. Statue of Komil Khojandi

0.43 MILES

Standing at the intersection of Lenin and the street that bears his name, the statue of Komil Khojandi commemorates the city's namesake.

4. Mausoleum of Sheikh Massal ad-Din


The final resting place of Sheikh Massal ad-Din, a 12th-century poet and ruler of Khojand, forms the central feature of the surrounding assembly of…

5. Sheikh Massal ad-Din complex

0.81 MILES

This religious complex comprises the 1394 brick mausoleum of Sheikh Massal ad-Din (1133–1223), covered porticoes with carved wooden pillars, a 20th…

6. Panchshanbe Bazaar

0.85 MILES

The core of this great bazaar, reputedly the largest in Central Asia, is an unusually elegant, purpose-built hall (1964) with arched entrance portals and…

7. WWII Monument

0.86 MILES

This modernist-style monument of giant marble stelae, below which burns the eternal flame, commemorates the heroes of WWII.

8. Lenin Statue

0.96 MILES

A 22m-tall statue of Lenin was moved here from Moscow in 1974 when Khojand was called Leninabad. In 2011 Vlad was quietly removed from his central plinth…