Last updated

Turkmenistan adm location map.svg
Red pog.svg
Location in Turkmenistan
Coordinates: 36°32′N61°13′E / 36.533°N 61.217°E / 36.533; 61.217
Country Flag of Turkmenistan.svg Turkmenistan
Province Ahal Province
District Sarahs Districts
285 m (935 ft)
 (1989 census) [1]

Sarahs (also written Saraghs, Serahs, Sarakhs, Saragt, or Serakhs, the last a backformation of Russian : Серахс) is an oasis city in Ahal Province, Turkmenistan, and the administrative center of Sarahs district (Turkmen : Sarahs etraby). It is located at latitude 36°31' North; longitude 61°12' East and an elevation of 285m above sea level. It is one of the oases of the ancient Silk Road lying between Merv to the east and Mashhad to the west. In 1989 the city had a population of 9,585. [1]



In Soviet times called Saragt in Turkmen, the city was referred to as Sarahs in antiquity and continuously to the present by locals. The meaning is unknown, but medieval historians asserted that it was a person's name. [2]


The Sarahs Oasis surrounding the town has been inhabited since 2nd millennium BCE. The main administrative centre was Old Serakhs, located in a slightly raised area somewhat south of the towns's present location. At the original site there remain a few brick fragments of the former citadel. The town claims to have been founded in 507 BCE. Although this is considered to be a somewhat arbitrary choice of date, [3] the city duly celebrated its 2500th anniversary in 1993. During the Sassanid period a Zoroastrian fire temple was constructed in Mele Hairam, about 15 km east of the town. It has been excavated by Polish archaeologists from Warsaw University since 1997. [4] In the Seljuk Era a famous school of architects was located in Sarahs, along with a mausoleum commemorating the 11th century sufi Abul Fazl (Serakhs Baba). In 1089 Yarty Gumbez mausoleum was constructed 8 km south of the town, possibly as a burial site for Sheikh Ahmed Al Khady.

The modern settlement was established in 1884 when Sarahs Oasis was annexed by the Russian Empire. It served as a Russian military post at the Iranian border. It was inhabited mainly by settlers of Russian and Polish origin. An Orthodox church, which no longer survives, was constructed in the town.

In 2010 monuments of Sarahs, including Old Serakhs, the Abul Fazl mausoleum, and the Mele Hairam temple complex were inscribed on the Tentative List to become UNESCO World Heritage Sites as a part of the "Silk Roads Sites in Turkmenistan" entry by the Turkmen government. [5]


Sarahs has a hot semi-arid climate (Köppen climate classification BSh), with cool winters and very hot summers. Rainfall is generally light and erratic, and occurs mainly in the winter and autumn months.

Climate data for Serakhs
Record high °C (°F)29.5
Average high °C (°F)10.0
Daily mean °C (°F)4.7
Average low °C (°F)0.7
Record low °C (°F)−21.0
Average precipitation mm (inches)32
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.1 mm)
Average relative humidity (%)70.166.859.951.338.926.925.324.229.340.559.470.746.9
Mean monthly sunshine hours 146.8141.5172.7213.0302.2359.5378.7358.9315.1256.0191.7145.82,981.9
Source 1: [6]
Source 2: NOAA (sun & precipitation, 1961-1990) [7]


Sarahs is a crossing point on the Iranian-Turkmen border and the place where bogies must be changed on the freight railway line from Tejen to Mashhad in Iran, which was opened in 1996. The passenger connection between Sarahs and Ashgabat is also operated.[ citation needed ] The airport at Sarahs is out of service.

See also

Related Research Articles

The history of Turkmenistan is largely shrouded in mystery, its past since the arrival of Indo-European Iranian tribes around 2000 BC is often the starting point of the area's discernible history. Early tribes were nomadic or semi-nomadic due to the arid conditions of the region as the steppe culture in Central Asia was an extension of a larger Eurasian series of horse cultures which spanned the entire spectrum of language families including the Indo-Europeans and Turko-Mongol groups. Some of the known early Iranian tribes included the Massagatae, Scythians/Sakas, and early Soghdians. Turkmenistan was a passing point for numerous migrations and invasions by tribes which gravitated towards the settled regions of the south including ancient Mesopotamia, Elam, and the Indus Valley Civilization.

Transport in Turkmenistan includes roadways, railways, airways, seaways, and waterways, as well as oil-, gas-, and water pipelines. Road-, rail-, and waterway transport fall under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Industry and Communications.

Ashgabat Capital of Turkmenistan

Ashgabat, formerly named Poltoratsk between 1919 and 1927, is the capital and the largest city of Turkmenistan. It is situated between the Karakum Desert and the Kopet Dag mountain range in Central Asia. It is also near the Iran-Turkmenistan border.

Turkmenistan Country in Central Asia

Turkmenistan, also known as Turkmenia, is a country in Central Asia, bordered by Kazakhstan to the northwest, Uzbekistan to the north, east and northeast, Afghanistan to the southeast, Iran to the south and southwest and the Caspian Sea to the west. Ashgabat is the capital and largest city of the country. The population of the country is about 6 million, the lowest of the Central Asian republics because Turkmenistan is one of the most sparsely populated nations in Asia. Citizens of Turkmenistan are known as Turkmenistanis, Turkmenians or Turkmens.

Ahal Region Region of Turkmenistan

Ahal Region is one of five provinces of Turkmenistan. It is in the south-center of the country, bordering Iran and Afghanistan along the Kopet Dag Range. Its area is 97,160 km2 (37,510 sq mi) and population 939,700.

Mary Region Region of Turkmenistan

Mary Region is one of five provinces in Turkmenistan. It is located in the south-east of the country, bordering Afghanistan. Its capital is the city of Mary. Its area is 87,150 km2 (33,650 sq mi) and population 1,480,400. The average population density is about 15 persons per square kilometer, but it reaches 150–200 per square kilometer in the most developed oases.

Türkmenabat Place in Lebap Province, Turkmenistan

Türkmenabat, formerly and since medieval times, Chardzhou and in ancient times Āmul, is the second-largest city in Turkmenistan and the capital of Lebap Province. As of 2009, it had a population of approximately 254,000 people. From 1924 to 1927 it was briefly renamed Leninsk in honor of Vladimir Lenin.

Tejen Place in Ahal Province, Turkmenistan

Tejen is an oasis city with district status in the Karakum Desert, in Ahal Province of Turkmenistan. It lies along the M37 highway, between Dushak and Mary, 223 kilometres (139 mi) by road southeast of Ashgabat. It has a population of approximately 52,000. To the east is the larger oasis of Mary.

Daşoguz Place in Turkmenistan

Daşoguz, formerly known as Tashauz and Dashkhovuz, is a city in northern Turkmenistan and the capital of Daşoguz Province. The Uzbekistan border is about 10 km away.

Serhetabat Place in Mary Province, Turkmenistan

Serhetabat is a city and administrative center of Serhetabat District, Mary Province, Turkmenistan, in the valley of the Kushka River. The population was 5,200 in 1991. It is immediately opposite Torghundi, Afghanistan, with which it is connected by a road and a 1,520 mm gauge railway.

Sarakhs City in Razavi Khorasan, Iran

Sarakhs is a city in Sarakhs County, Razavi Khorasan Province, Iran. Sarakhs was once a stopping point along the Silk Road, and in its 11th century heyday had many libraries. Much of the original city site is now just across the border at Serakhs in Turkmenistan. According to the most recent national census, in 2006, the city's population was 33,571 in 8,066 families.

Yaz culture Early Iron Age culture of Margiana, Bactria and Sogdia

The Yaz culture was an early Iron Age culture of Margiana, Bactria and Sogdia. It emerges at the top of late Bronze Age sites (BMAC), sometimes as stone towers and sizeable houses associated with irrigation systems. Ceramics were mostly hand-made, but there was increasing use of wheel-thrown ware. There have been found bronze or iron arrowheads, also iron sickles or carpet knives among other artifacts.

Anau, Turkmenistan Place in Ahal Province, Turkmenistan

Anau is a city in Turkmenistan. It is the capital of Ahal Province and is 8 km southeast of Ashgabat, to which it is connected via the M37 highway.

Büzmeýin, Turkmenistan Place in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan

See also Ashgabat / Districts

Bereket Place in Balkan Province, Turkmenistan

Bereket, formerly Gazanjyk or Kazandzhik, is a city in Balkan Province in western Turkmenistan. Bereket is the administrative centre of Bereket District.

Baýramaly Place in Mary Province, Turkmenistan

Baýramaly is a city in and the seat of Baýramaly District, Mary Province, Turkmenistan. It lies about 27 km east of the provincial capital Mary, along the main railway line from Ashgabat to Tashkent. In 2009, its population was estimated at 88,486.

Index of Turkmenistan-related articles Wikipedia index

The list of Turkmenistan-related articles is below

Rail transport in Turkmenistan Overview of rail transport in Turkmenistan

Turkmenistan has 4,980 kilometres (3,090 mi) of railways. The railway operator is the state owned company Türkmendemirýollary. The company belongs to the Ministry of Railways of Turkmenistan. Turkmenistan is currently expanding its rail system to cover 5,256.25 kilometres (3,266.08 mi) more distance, which will take its network to 10,236.25 kilometres (6,360.51 mi) track kilometres by 2025.

Turkmenistan is a country with large potential for an expanded tourism industry. Many of its Central Asian cities were main points of trade on the Silk Road, linking Eastern and Western civilizations. Many neighboring countries promote their countries based on their location along the Great Silk Road. Tourism has grown rapidly in recent years. Tourists from abroad are deterred by the restrictive visa regime with all countries of the world. Tourism is regulated by the Tourism Committee of Turkmenistan.

Iran–Turkmenistan border Separates the territories of Iran and Turkmenistan

The Iran-Turkmenistan border is 1,148km in length and runs from the Caspian Sea to the tripoint with Afghanistan. The Turkmen capital Ashgabat is only 15 miles north of this boundary, and Mashhad is 47 miles south of it.


  1. 1 2 Всесоюзная перепись населения 1989 г.: Численность городского населения союзных республик, их территориальных единиц, городских поселений и городских районов по полу [All-Union Population Census of 1989: The urban population of the Union's republics, their territorial units, urban settlements and urban areas by sex] (in Russian). 2009. Archived from the original on 26 February 2009.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. Atanyýazow, Soltanşa (1980). Түркменистаның Географик Атларының Дүшүндиришли Сөзлүги [Explanatory Dictionary of Geographic Names in Turkmenistan]. Ashgabat: Ылым. p. 247.
  3. Bradt Guide to Turkmenistan, 1st edition, page 131.
  4. "Mele Hairam, Archaeology in Serakhs Oasis". Polish Archaeological Mission in Iran and Central Asia. Retrieved 23 March 2013.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  5. "Silk Roads Sites in Turkmenistan, UNESCO World Heritage Centre". UNESCO. Retrieved 23 March 2013.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  6. "Serakhs, Turkmenistan". Retrieved 10 February 2013.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  7. "Climate Normals for Saragt". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration . Retrieved 10 February 2013.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)

Coordinates: 36°32′N61°13′E / 36.533°N 61.217°E / 36.533; 61.217