Kalta Minor Minaret

Top choice islamic site in Khiva

Image by Kelly Cheng Travel Photography Getty Images

This fat, turquoise-tiled minaret was begun in 1851 by Mohammed Amin Khan, who according to legend wanted to build a minaret so high he could see all the way to Bukhara. Unfortunately the khan dropped dead in 1855, leaving the beautifully tiled structure unfinished.

East of the minaret, beside the medressa, is the small, plain Sayid Alauddin Mausoleum, dating from 1310 when Khiva was under the Golden Horde of the Mongol empire. You might find people praying in front of the 19th-century tiled sarcophagus.