The Burana Tower is a minaret located 15km from the southwest of Tokmok, a city in the Chuy Region, northern Kyrgyzstan.
The minaret is estimated to be built between the 10th and 11th centuries. During that period, the Kara-Khanid Khanate expanded its territory, which then covered modern-day Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, and some parts of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region in China. Balasagun, located in modern-day Chuy Region, was set as the summer capital.
Now, the only remains at the former site of Balasagun are the Burana Tower, parts of the foundation of a castle, and three mausoleums. A small museum was later built at the same site, displaying both the history and artefacts of the area.
The minaret was originally 45m tall. Yet, it was reduced to 25m due to a major earthquake in the 15th century which destroyed the top half of it. The reduction in height, however, doesn’t mean a reduction in the attractiveness of the view. Climbing the winding stairway to the top, you can still admire the view of the vast Chuy Region, which is surrounded by mountains.