In the spurs of the Western Tien Shan stretches Tashkent oasis. More than 20 centuries ago at the crossroads of caravan routes leading from Russia to India, from China to Rome, from Iran to Mongolia emerged a small settlement called Yuni (the first written mention – end II beginning of the I centuries BC.). Then the name changed: Judge, Chach, Shash, Binkent. The current name – Tashkent – first mentioned in written sources of the XI century. By XIV century there already existed a large feudal fortress city. Since 1930, Tashkent became the capital of the Uzbek SSR. Now it is a large modern metropolis with a population of over 2.5 million people. Wars and natural disasters have destroyed many monuments here. After the devastating earthquake in 1966, the city was practically rebuilt. Tashkent is constantly growing and prettier, decorated with new parks, fountains, boulevards and buildings, facilities with the latest technology of seismic resistant construction.


It is one of the oldest cities in the world (2750 years) – “Pearl of the East”, as it was called chroniclers and poets of antiquity – is located on the territory of the Zarafshan River Basin ( “gold bearing”). The founder of this Samarkand is a huge settlement of Afrasiab, named by the ancient Greeks Marakanda. Here in the middle of the 1st millennium BC there was a fortress city, which was destroyed in the IV century BC by armies of Alexander the Great. In the VIII century,  the rebuilt city was again destroyed by the troops of the Arab Caliphate, but revived to life. After the invasion of hordes of Genghis Khan in the XIII century, Afrasiab ceased to exist and the residents moved to the south-west of it,on the territory of the present Samarkand. The heyday of the medieval town is connected with the rule of Amir Temur (Tamerlane – 1370-1405 years), selected Samarkand as the capital of his vast empire, which included Azerbaijan, Georgia, Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, parts of India, the entire territory of the present Central Asia and were in vassal depending on Egypt, Syria, Turkey, the Golden Horde, Mogolistan (territory of present Kyrgyzstan). In the XVI century,  Bukhara was became the capital and Samarkand during the following centuries, as well as the entire territory of Central Asia, has experienced a period of feudal disintegration. In 1868 the city was occupied by Russian colonial troops and entered in the newly created Zeravshan District of Turkestan Governor General. During this period, there are built houses of European style, developed parks, squares and boulevards. Since 1924 year by 1930year -it had been the capital of Soviet Uzbekistan. Now Samarkand – the second largest and by numbers of universities city in the country with a population of over 500 000 people.


During its long history (2500 years) Bukhara repeatedly conquered, destroyed, lost its international importance as a center of spiritual culture of the East. But every time “Bukhara-i-Sharif” ( “Noble Bukhara”) newly restored, revived its economy, science and art, constructed new buildings. The first mention of it is in the holy book “Avesta”, entitled “Vihar” which in Sanskrit means “monastery”. At that time it was a small village surrounded by marshes. After the domination of the Tajik Samanid (IX-X centuries), perhaps the greatest prosperity reaches Bukhara in the second half of the XVI century. By the XVI-XVII centuries the city – the capital of the independent khanate of Bukhara, and by the middle of the XVIII century – the emirate. The central part of the “old” city is a holistic architectural ensemble. Even in Soviet times on the tops of the minarets and domes of the sacred bird nesting Bukhara – storks. At a great height against the sky could be seen a clear silhouette of the bird. It was one of the city’s attractions. In Bukhara and its suburbs are located over 500 architectural monuments from different times and eras. It is necessary to wander through the narrow streets of the “old” town and you have the impression that the “time machine” will move you to the medieval East.


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Arrival in Tashkent International Airport. You will meet our representative holding a sign. Tourist vehicles will take us into a comfortable hotel. Accommodation on arrival. Next you will go to one of the restaurants in town for dinner (your preference will be stipulated in advance menu).


After breakfast our guide will invite you to the bus sightseeing tour (3-4 hours). Lunch time you will spend in one of the city’s restaurants, where dishes of national Uzbek cuisine. After dinner you can take a walk on their own capital, or we will take you by car to the largest and oldest bazaar in Tashkent – “Chor-Su”. Free time you finish a meal in one of the restaurants in town.


– Early departure to the train / railway station to the comfortable electric train “Afrasiab”, following from Tashkent to Samarkand (2 hours 10 minutes on the way). You will be met and tourist vehicles will transport to the hotel for accommodation on arrival. Here you already expect a guide who will be with you the whole day.

Begin your excursion into the history of the city with a visit to the base of the museum in Samarkand on the territory of the ancient settlement of Afrasiab, where you will see the original wall painting (VIIv) of one of the palaces, discovered during archaeological excavations. Then you get acquainted with the great exposition of artifacts (with Ic on the XIII century BC), found on the territory of the settlement. A further aspect of the show will tour the memorial museum of Ulugbek (grandson of Tamerlane) and the remains built on his orders Observatory 1428-29gg equal to that at the time was not on the Muslim East. Ulugbek was not only the ruler of the vast country, but also a great scholar of his time, an outstanding astronomer. Many data obtained in the Samarkand observatory, researchers in Europe used up to the XVII century. In the museum you will see the exhibits telling about the “astronomical Academy of the East” and its wonderful creator. Near the museum is the grave of Russian archaeologist VL Vyatkina, first discovered traces of the observatory in 1908. It’s time to break for lunch in the national house, where you can taste a dish that is prepared just in Samarkand – “nahot”. With renewed energy, you go to the next object of our tour – one of the greatest achievements of world architecture – ensemble of mausoleums of Shah-i-Zinda (XII-XIX centuries). From the entrance portal uphill run up two rows of tombs, mausoleums, between which formed a corridor. More than two dozen mausoleums, mosques, memorial and office space make this magnificent memorial. Facilities vary in size, architecture, color, decoration. Here adjoin bright colored mosaics, carved lace walls and doors with strict geometrical planes, almost devoid of cladding. Inscriptions that bizarre and at the same time organically woven into ornaments, decorating facades, left us the names of the great craftsmen of Samarkand, Bukhara and Azerbaijan; visible brushwork Iranian masters. One of his contemporaries wrote: “The heavens – the Moon and the Sun … sat down on the carpet meditation and bit a finger surprise – they had never seen such buildings and adorned with elegant”. Next you follow a magnificent mosque Bibi Khanum Mosque, built by order of Timur (Tamerlane) in 1399-1404gg as local architects, and exported from various countries. It was the tallest building in the East at that time. Facade and dome of the mosque give an idea of the original splendor of all the grandiose building, decorated with colorful mosaics, carved marble, curly script, lined with bricks, everywhere abundant gilding was applied. In the courtyard you can see the mosque learned from marble lyauh (music stand – the first half of the XV century) for a huge Qur’an. It is covered with Arabic script. Next architectural ensemble – the area three madrasahs (Muslim spiritual school) Registan. Accompanied by a guide, you will walk down the street, which was founded by the order of Timur as a business, to the “heart” of Samarkand Registan Square ( “sandy place”). Initially, it was a place of shopping malls.

It housed caravanserais, bathhouses, trading pavilions, benches small artisans. These products were brought by merchants from different countries, Asia Minor and the Volga region, Siberia and Far East, Persia and the Arabian Peninsula. During the reign of Ulugbek – grandson of Timur (Tamerlane), Samarkand to become a major science center of the East. At this time, not only built the famous observatory and Ulugbek (1417-1420gg) on Registan Square. Only in the XVII century on the other hand it is being built Sher-Dor – “having tigers” (1619-1636gg). Its portal is visible heraldic emblem: a tiger, tearing a deer on the background of the solar face. Rounding out the ensemble of central Tilla-Kari – “gold plating” (1646-1660gg) – it was built on the site of the caravanserai XV century. with partial use of its foundations and walls. The building has joined the function madrassah and mosque of the city. Inside the luxurious interior of the mosque is painted flower and floral ornaments with abundant gilding. Currently, the area between the three madrasahs biannual international festival of folk art, where singers and dancers from around the world demonstrate their singing and dancing art. Concludes your excursion day dinner in the national Uzbek house. Samarkand serves dishes that you do not try in any restaurant.


At the end of breakfast at the hotel our guide will invite you to continue the excursion into the history of Samarkand. Not far from the Registan Square, at the symbolic boundary between “old” and “new” city, it is the dynastic tomb of Timurid – Gur Emir (1404-1405gg additional extension – the XV-XVII centuries). Construction began on the orders of the mausoleum of Tamerlane in 1403 for his grandson Muhammad-Sultan, who was to become the ruler of Maverannahr after Timur’s death. However, he died before his grandfather’s grandson. Going campaign against China in 1404, Timur died in Otrar city (southern Kazakhstan) at the age of 69 years. His body was transported to Samarkand and buried in the crypt of the mausoleum of Mohammed Sultan. Since that time, he became known as Gur-Emir – “tomb of the Emir.” During the reign of Ulugbek mausoleum became the burial place of the family exclusively persons Timurid. Fully restored Gur Emir, attracts a wonderful combination of proportions, a living ornament mosaic tiling and a luminous blue of the ribbed dome. Once everyone who entered the mausoleum, met at the entrance to a beautiful plate with the inscription, said that the burial of Timur. This plate and a flap door, decorated with intricate carvings, ivory and silver are in the Hermitage. Inside the mausoleum on the marble floor, fenced patterned marble bars, are tombstones, the central of which – from a single piece of black and green jade – is installed over the grave of Timur. Deep beneath the floor is vaulted crypt with the graves of Timur, his sons, grandsons and two sheikhs (head of a religious order). At the base of the interior walls – high panel of greenish onyx. The decor of the mausoleum used, apparently, all the available tools in the arsenal of the artist: stone carving and woodwork, stained glass windows and stalactites, but the most important position occupied by the blue and gold painting. They covered all the walls of the plane from the bottom to the top of the dome. Artistic and historical significance of the Gur-Emir has led to a large and lasting interest in his research. He devoted all pages generalizing works on Central Asian architecture. Then you travel to Samarkand suburbs, where there is a place called Kan and Gil. Through it flows a stream Ab-Rahmat ( “blessed water”). The place is known since the XIV century. Here, the court arranged holidays and festivities, broken tents and marquees. Currently, this area is built up with houses of the private sector. This is where, on the banks of the creek Ab-Rahmat and located a small factory for the production of Samarkand silk paper. In former times there were many such factories on the banks of small rivers and produced them silk paper replaced the papyrus in the XIV century in Europe. Enthusiasts have revived the ancient technique of handicraft making paper from the bark of the mulberry tree and is now a place of pilgrimage for tourists coming to Samarkand. Wizard will show you the entire work process, after which you will have the opportunity to purchase their favorite products from tissue paper. This is a great souvenir – a typical Samarkand. It’s time to break for lunch in national Uzbek house where you will be a master class on cooking pilaf. After a very hearty lunch, you have the opportunity to visit the biggest bazaar in Samarkand yourself or walk around the city before dinner in one of the restaurants in town.


Finished breakfast at the hotel, you go to the train / railway station to the comfortable electric train that takes you to Bukhara (2 hours 10 minutes on the way.). You will be met and tourist vehicles will transport to the hotel, where you already awaits guide. After placing -excursions on architectural monuments of X-XIX centuries.

The first display object – it is the core of the ancient Bukhara – Ark fortress. For 2 millennia the cultural soil layers formed here a high platform on which the end of XVIII- the beginning of XX centuries the Bukhara emirs erected new buildings and complement the old. Here were the palace mosque, stables, mint, harems, warehouses, Audience Hall, the underground prison, but most of the buildings no longer exist. With the city walls arch, rising 10-15 meters above the streets of Bukhara, offers a broad overview of the city with countless domes and minarets. Almost opposite the Arch across the square (Registan), rises very elegant, simple and elegant ensemble Bala House. His mosque was built in 1712 and located in front of her quince (covered porch) with thin carved wooden columns – it was built only at the beginning of XX century. Just one block away is a park, at the end of which is remarkable for its beauty of the mausoleum – the dynastic tomb of the Samanids (late start IX- Xvv). The building it is the first in the Central Asian region, built of brick as a building material, and dekoroobrazuyuschego. The ratio of alternating bricks laid horizontally, vertically, at an angle, hewn in the form of discs and rosettes, creating a rich architectural cover. Then you go to the architectural construction of the XIV century – mazar (shrine) – Chashma-Ayub, erected over the well of the legendary (Chashma) Prophet Ayub (Job). Finish your tour today and let us go to dinner at one of the restaurants in town.


After breakfast at the hotel the guide will invite you for the continuation of the tour. If the previous display objects as if embedded in a modern building in Bukhara, the central part of the “old” city is a holistic architectural ensemble of XVI-XVII centuries.

His inspection you start to construction of the complex Poi Kalyan ( “Beneath the Great”), grouped around the highest minaret Bukhara – Kalon (tower for calling for prayer). It was built in 1127 its height – 47m, inside – 105 steps leading to the top. Construction of masonry and lining are made of burnt bricks. The minaret stands on a monolithic foundation, lowered deep into the earth that gives him greater strength. On the right side of the minaret rises majestic building mosque Masjid-Kalyan, erected in the first half of the XV century over the remains of a medieval mosque XI-XIIvv. Perestroika and updates were made in 1514. Its high altitude dome lined with bricks painted in blue, argues with a bright blue sky. The courtyard of the mosque is framed by roofed galleries that support its strong pillars 288 domes. Here, even in the hot days of coolness and gloom prevails. Opposite the mosque is a madrasah Miri-Arab, erected influential Sheikh (head of a religious order) Miri-Arab Yemen in 1535-36 years. As with the outside, and inside the building is decorated with colored mosaics. This action madrassas where young men preparing to serve in the mosques. In addition to the Qur’an, they are learning and science. Some religious center of Bukhara located shops of merchants and craftsmen’s workshops, sell to. The old bazaars of Central Asia generally were always covered. Galleries and dome protected from the scorching rays of summer sun, rain and snow – in winter. Well preserved are a number of indoor shopping arcades – TIMs. Very distinctive domed market buildings – yet. By the XV century belongs dome of jewelers – Taki-Zargaron to XVI – merchants dome hats – Tilpak-Furushon, dome changed – Taki-Sarafon and Tim Abdulla intended for sale silk. The covered passages of the city, acting in our days, you can buy excellent handicrafts, which from time immemorial famous Bukhara. Near shopping malls is one of the oldest mosques – Magokki-Attari. According to written sources, it originated on the site of a pagan temple, but was later substantially rebuilt in the XII century., Then in the XVI century. From the original building remained the main facade with asymmetrically arranged portal, hitting a variety of shaped masonry bricks and terracotta tiles ornament (baked clay), forming the present stone lace. A little on the narrow streets of medieval Bukhara, you will go to one of the largest sources of water supply – to Labi Hauz. Water from the canal Shahrukh flowing through the city, do not always have enough residents, especially in the summer. Therefore, water is stored in the primitive small reservoirs (Hawzas) or ponds. Almost square pond Labi-House was built in 1620g. Flanked by his three monumental buildings: khanaka Nadir-Divan-Begi (a hospice for pilgrims and dervishes) – 20 years of the XVI century; the second building – madrassas Kukeltash (1568-69gg) – it was one of the biggest madrasa of his time (160 hujras – cells); Nadir-Divan-Begi (1622g.). The wall is dominated by its stylized floral motifs, among which are the images of flying phoenixes. For centuries, the territory on which the House, with the adjacent buildings that served as a place of rest and walking residents of Bukhara. This tradition has survived to this day. Then you go (by car) to the north of Bukhara in the country residence of the last Bukhara emirs – Sitora-Mahi-Hasa (the end of XIX century-1918). Old palace, built by masters from Bukhara, who studied Russian architecture in St. Petersburg and Yalta, is a mixture of European and Bukharan style. New Palace – a complex of buildings (also mixed Eastern and European styles): arch gate, harem, greenhouse, covered gallery and the main building. Most interesting in this palace interiors of the White Hall and reception. Walls and ceilings are decorated with rich carving and painting ganch (gypsum) in the tradition of Bukhara architectural and decorative school. The undoubted attractions Mahasaya (as it is fondly called Bukhara) should include the carved gates with wrought copper nails and handles decorated with fine embossing. Palaces are located in a beautiful park with a variety of ornamental and fruit trees, lawns, a huge pond. Once upon a time, part of the territory occupied zoological garden where the grass roamed gazelles, pheasants and peacocks freely walking past and at present. The rich excursion program can be interrupted (if you wish, at any time) for lunch and dinner in city restaurants.


After breakfast you leave to Bukhara International Airport. Our tour ends with the author. Your stay on the hospitable land of Uzbekistan program is completed.

On the route you need to be: in the summer

  • closed comfortable shoes thickened soles
  • hats for protection from direct sunlight,
  • Sunglasses,
  • sunblock,
  • Outer clothing made of linen or cotton material, preferably with long sleeves


Seasonality action route – all year round

Programme stay on Route 1 and the last day depends on the time of arrival to the starting point of the tour and the time of departure from the destination, therefore subject to change.








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