Uzbekistan cultural tour – 7 days
View the oldest known copy of Koran in Tashkent, wander through blue tiled and majolica decorated madrassas of mighty Registan in Samarkand and explore the Central Asia’s holiest city Bukhara with hundreds of fascinating monuments during this 7 days cultural tour to the Silk Road cities of Uzbekistan. You will also have an opportunity to visit local handicraft shops and bustling oriental Bazaars in Samarkand and Bukhara.
Places visited: Tashkent, Samarkand, Bukhara
- Viewing oldest known copy of Koran
- Silk Road jewels Bukhara and Samarkand
- Imposing Registan, ancient Kalon Minaret and Bukhara’s Ark citadel
- Wandering through oriental Sioyb Baazar
Best time: All year around
Day 1 – Tashkent
Arrive in Tashkent in the afternoon and meet by our driver who transfers you to the hotel.
Day 2 –Tashkent
Start sightseeing tour in Tashkent. Visit Independence Square, Amir Timur Square, History Museum, Khast Imam Complex, Chorsu Bazaar, Kukaldosh Medressa etc.
Day 3 – Tashkent-Samarkand
Transfer by car to Samarkand; city tour including Gur Emir, Registan, Bibi-Khanym Mosque and Siyob Bazzar.
Day 4 – Samarkand – Bukhara
Half day city tour. Visit Sha-i-Zinda necropolis, Afrosiab Museum and Ulugbek’s Observatory. In the afternoon transfer to Bukhara.
Day 5 – Bukhara
Full day sightseeing tour in Bukhara; 12th century Kalon Minaret, Bolo Khauz Mosque, Ismail Samani Mausoleum, Ark citadel and other monuments.
Day 6 – Bukhara
Visit the sights around Bukhara; summer palace -Sitorai Mohi Hosa, Chor-Bakr necropolis, Bakhautdin Naqshband complex.
Day 7 – Bukhara –Tashkent
8:40 Early train transfer to Tashkent. Arrive in Tashkent and be transferred to your hotel/ Tashkent International Airport.
END OF THE PROGRAM
Price & Service
|Number of People||2-3||4-7||8-14|
|Price per person||USD 640||USD 520||upon request|
Single suplement – 100 USD
What is Included
- 6 nights in the hotels based on twin/double room sharing
- 6 Breakfast
- Train ticket: Bukhara-Tashkent (2 class, for Sharq Train)
- Entrance tickets as per itinerary
- Transport throughout the tour incl. airport pick ups, transfers
- Local guide service in each city
- Letter of Invitation for Tourist visa (if necessary)
What’s not Included
- International flights
- Camera fees charged separately by museums and attractions
- Lunches and dinners (allow some 70-80 USD p.p)
- Personal Travel Insurance
- Charges in the hotels for additional services
- Additional tours and activities not mentioned in the itinerary
Day 1 – Tashkent
Arrive in Tashkent airport in the afternoon and be transferred by our driver to the hotel. Depending on the time of your arrival you may go out for a dinner or relax in the hotel.
Day 2 - Tashkent
The tour starts in the morning in Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan, which has been on this site for more than 2000 years. The city was completely rebuilt by Soviet government with spacious avenues, large parks and ever-present fountains after being flattened by the devastating earthquake of 1966.
Today we spend whole day exploring the sights of charming Tashkent on a city tour. Start the tour by visiting Independence Square, Amir Timur Square and History Museum of the People of Uzbekistan. Continue sightseeing program and visit Khast Imam Complex, which contains the oldest known copy of the Koran dating from 655. From Khast Imam visit the nearby Chorsu Bazaar – the largest and oldest markets in Central Asia. Wandering through this huge bustling market is a great way to see local people going about their daily lives; you will also meet many friendly local vendors willing to talk to you. The 16th century Kukaldosh Medressa – Tashkent’s most renowned Islamic learning centre and 15th century Juma Mosque are also both located at a short walk away from Chorzu Bazaar.
If the time permits, we can still visit the Fine Arts Museum of Uzbekistan and the Museum of Applied Arts.
Day 3 - Tashkent-Samarkand
In the morning transfer by car to Samarkand. One of the oldest inhabited cities in the world, Samarkand is truly a jewel of the ancient and modern Silk Road. From its foundation in 5th century BC, Samarkand was the centre of artisans and traders paying an important role on the trade crossroads between China, Persia and India. The city was taken by Alexander the Great (in 329 BC) and ruined by Genghis Khan before it started to blossom as the capital of Amir Timur’s (Tamerlane) empire in 14th century.
Arrive in Samarkand and meet by your guide. After check in at the hotel, we start our sightseeing tour from visiting Gur Amir Mausoleum. The mausoleum was originally built by Timur for his grandson and later became the resting place for himself, his sons and grandsons. Besides Timur and his sons and grandsons, the place is final resting place for Timur’s teachers as well. Leave Gur-Emir and continue to Registan Ensemble containing Ulugbek, Sher Dor ,Tilla-Kari Medressas and the Registan Square. Being among the world’s oldest surviving medressas, these three edifices were medieval academies from where regions renowned scientists graduated. Wander through blue tiled and majolica decorated madrassas of mighty Registan, probably Central Asia’s most captivating monument.
From Registan walk further north though the busy handicraft and souvenir stalls of Tashkent Street towards Bibi-Khanym Mosque. The legend says that it was Bibi-Kahanym, Timur’s beloved wife who ordered to build this grand mosque with its huge cupola to surprise Timur, who was at that time away in war fields. Bibi-Kahanym mosque overlooks the busy Siob Bazaar, where you can test your bargaining skills with the friendly local merchants and sample some fresh produce on offer. The place is also great for taking the photos of the many bustling stalls and meeting hospitable local people.
The evening is free for you to wander around and explore the nightlife of majestic Samarkand.
Day 4 - Samarkand - Bukhara
After early breakfast, we start a half-day city tour with the visits to Sha-i-Zinda necropolis, Afrosiab Museum and Ulugbek’s Observatory.
On the opposite site of Siyob Bazaar, you will see Shah-i-Zinda necropolis, row of beautiful mausoleums lavishly decorated with blue tiles and majolica, the place is also known as ‘Town of the Dead’. The most important site in Sah-i-Zinda is the shrine of Qusam ibn-Abbas, the cousin of Prophet Mohammed who was first to preach Islam in this area. Leave Shah-i-Zinda and continue to Ulugbek’s observatory with en route stop at Afrosiab Museum. Timur’s grandson Ulugbek was more famous as astronomer than as a ruler. This great medieval astronomer built an extraordinary observatory that enabled him to calculate the length of the year to within 1 minute of what we now know it to be. Complete the city tour with the visit to Ulugbek’s observatory.
In the afternoon, transfer by car to Bukhara. Arrive in Bukhara and enjoy free afternoon wandering through busy trading domes full of embroideries, handicrafts, jewelleries and various spices. You may also have a tea relaxing on the tapchans (tea beds) under centuries old mulberry trees in the local chaikhana at the delightful Lyabi-Hauz pool.
Day 5 - Bukhara
With more than one hundred unique monuments, Bukhara is regarded as ‘Bastion of Islam’ and the holiest city in Central Asia. We spread our sightseeing program in Bukhara over two days as the city and the surrounding area offer a lot to see. On the first day, we enjoy full day sightseeing tour in the city and on the second day, half-day sightseeing around the city with the free afternoon for own exploration.
Start your tour by visiting Laybi Hauz, 9th century mosque Maghoki-Attar, and Nadir Divanbegi Medressa. Passing medieval trading domes visit Abdul Aziz Khan and Ulugbek Medressas and continue to Kalon Ensemble consisting of Kalon Minaret and Kalon Mosque. 47 meters tall Kalon minaret was built by Bukhara’s ruler Arslan Khan in 1127. The minaret is also called “Tower of Death”, because from the top of it prisoners were once flung to their death on market days. Opposite the Kalon Mosque, there is 16th century Mir-i-Arab Medressa, which is still in operation.
Proceed further west from Kalon Ensemble and visit royal Ark fortress dating back to 5th century AD; this fortress was ancient centre of Bukhara and the scene of many gruesome events. Inside the Ark, view Juma Mosque, Reception & Coronation Court, Zindon (‘Bug Pit’ prison) and emir’s official place of worship Bolo-Hauz Mosque. Leave Ark fortress and continue through Registan Square towards Samani Park to visit 10th century Ismail Samani and Chashma Ayub mausoleums.
This evening is free to explore the nightlife in Bukhara.
Day 6 - Bukhara
Start second day of your tour with the visit to Sitorai Mohi Hosa – the summer palace of the last emir. Emir Alim Khan involved both Russian and local masters to build this summer residence so you will see the unique combination of Russian and local design. The halls of the palace opulently decorated with paintings and carpets.
Leave Sitorai Mohi Hosa and continue to the village of Kasri Orifon. Stop en route at Chor-Bakr necropolis. Arrive in Qasri Orifon village and visit Bakhautdin Naqshband complex. Bakhautdin Naqshband (1318–89) is the founder of one of the most influential Sufi orders in Central Asia. The complex containing couple of mosques, minaret and the mausoleum of Bakhautdin Naqshband is one of the countries famous places of pilgrimage.
Return to Bukhara. Today’s afternoon has been left completely free for you to spend more time exploring the city at your leisure. There is plenty of time to explore the artisan shops and wander the narrow twisting streets and alleyways. There is also an option to take in a local puppet show held in an old caravanserai or indulge in a medieval Hammam (steam bath).
Day 7 - Bukhara-Tashkent
After early breakfast, transfer to railway station to catch a train at 8:40 to Tashkent.
Arrive in Tashkent (11:45) and be transferred to your hotel / Tashkent International Airport.