Shah-i-Zinda Necropolis, Samarkand
Visit one of Samarkand's less well known but most delightful treasures - the complex of tombs known as the Shah-i-Zinda, located in the old city of Afrosiab which predated Samarkand and was destroyed by Genghis Khan in the 13th century. The stunning avenue of mausoleums contains some of Central Asia's finest majolica tilework. The name Shah-i-Zinda means "The Shrine of the Living King" which almost certainly refers to the grave of Qusam ibn Abbas, a cousin of the Prophet Mohammed, who was beheaded in the 7th century by Zoroastrian fire-worshippers. His tomb is the innermost and holiest in the complex and draws pilgrims from all over the Islamic world.