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Berel mounds

Ancient settlements of East KazakhstanJeep tour to Berel mounds

Berel mounds are a historical monument of the Saka period, a complex of mounds in the valley of the Bukhtarma River, located in the Altai Mountains on the territory of modern Kazakhstan, about 7 km from the village of Berel of the same name. These mounds were first explored in 1865 by the Russian researcher Vasily Radov, who conducted excavations on the mound, which is now called the Bolshoy Berelsky Kurgan. The mounds date back to the VIII-VII century BC.

How to get there

Berel mounds are located in the Katon-Karaygay Nature Reserve, East Kazakhstan region, near the village of Berel, the right bank of the Bukhtarma River.


The earliest mounds date from the 4th-3rd centuries BC (2400-2300 BC), and the later ones date from the ancient Turkic period - 7-8 centuries BC (1200-1300 BC). The largest mound in this group is known to science as the "Big Berel Mound". The mounds are also known for the fact that in 2003, an archaeological expedition led by an employee of the Kazakh National University, Doctor of Sciences Abdesh Toleubayev, discovered the "Golden Mound of the Kings". Ornaments were found in the mound, which later became the basis for the reconstruction of the third "Golden Man" in Kazakhstan. The clothes of the buried person are probably completely embroidered with gold, but not in the same way as in all other rich Scythian-Saka tombs. In addition, earlier a number of gold and precious items were discovered in neighboring mounds, most of them are now stored in the Hermitage.

In the Berel necropolis from 1997 to the present, 20 monuments have been examined, of which graves No. 4, 9, 10, 11 have been opened. The Berel necropolis has gained worldwide fame thanks to the things found in the mounds, made in the aristocratic and Scythian-Siberian animal style. The data provided by the mounds in the Berel necropolis are also unique. In the large graves of the Berel necropolis, clothing, harness, wood products, saddle, hides, felt were found, the materials were well preserved due to the combination of the climate of the region.

Berel Necropolis (Berel mounds)


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