The Sulayman-Too Museum Complex
One of the largest museums in Osh, Kyrgyzstan, is found at the foot of the same-name Solomon Mountain, tourist attractions and famous place of Muslim pilgrimage.
The museum was established in 1949. Over its long history it changed its name several times. The museum has over 33,000 exhibits, relating to the history, archeology, art, and nature of the southern region of Kyrgyzstan.
In the year 2000, the museum got a new building with total area of 1,100 m2 on the occasion of 3000-anniversary of Osh city.
The exposition of the museum complex was divided into two main sections, devoted to the nature of the region and its history. There you can find ancient manuscripts and coins, household items and felt products, books and photographs, as well as gifts to the city from foreign states’ leaders.
Among the branches of the Sulayman-Too Museum Complex there are several small regional museums such as the Urkuya Salieva Museum, Nookat District Museum, Ozgon (Uzgen) Architectural Complex, and “Russia” Collective Farm Museum.
The Sulayman-Too Osh museum also includes the Kyrgyzstan’s only Museum of Spiritual Culture, located on the southern slope of Rushan Mount. The museum first floor consists of expanded coves, the upper one, of a natural cave. The building has 13 rooms of total area of 1,238 m2.
The artifacts collected in the museum, one way or another, are connected with various religious cults, existed in Central Asia since the ancient times: from animism and shamanism to world’s religions.
There is good reason to build the Museum of Spiritual Culture on one of the Suleyman-Too peaks. It has petroglyphs – the age of some of them numbers in millennia, and at least 12 holly caves, visited by numerous pilgrims. In ancient times these caves were a shelter to hermits and as such they had altars and shrines, so people come there to pray and ask the saints for help.