Uzbekistan holidays, tailor made
Description of Uzbekistan holidays, tailor made
This journey through Uzbekistan reveals a stunning melange of history, culture and natural majesty in one of Central Asia's most fascinating countries. Beginning in Tashkent, you’ll discover Silk Road cities and desert castles, see the transformation of the Aral Sea, and experience wilderness and village life in the beautiful Nurata Mountains. Delve one of the world’s finest collections of Soviet avant-garde art one day, sleep in a desert yurt camp another.
After exploring Tashkent's mosques, madrassahs, grand squares and museums (don't miss the world's oldest Koran at the Muyie Mubarak library), travel north to the fascinating town of Nukus, home to a superb collection of rare Soviet avant-garde art at the Igor Savitsky Museum.
If art provokes thought, so can ecology. Visiting the fast disappearing Aral Sea, see how a one-time place of marine bounty has become a dust bowl graveyard of ships and abandoned ports such as Moynak. Then lift your spirits with the wonders of natural rather than man-made desert around Ayaz Kala. This is a land of remarkable mud brick desert castles dating back to 2300BC, whose ruins you'll visit before bedding down in a yurt camp by one of the finest.
Heading to Khiva, discover a 1500-year-old walled city studded with palaces, mosques, madrassahs and medieval lanes, in whose ancient houses you'll see traditional weaving and silk making. Khiva's Silk Road cousin Bukhara, meanwhile, offers over 150 monuments dotted around alleys enlivened by colourful bazaars. Don't miss the Bolo-Khauz Mosque with its beautiful carved wooden pillars, Kalyan Square with its great minaret, and the delightful 10th century Ismael Samani Mausoleum.
The Nurata Nature Reserve provides a green break from the Silk Road city trail, offering a mountain kingdom whose villages and wildlife you'll explore over a couple of days. Experience village life at first hand by having a go at local handicrafts or helping bake bread in traditional ovens, or go trekking to Lake Aydur to birdwatch or swim.
The Silk Road draws you back for the grandest of its cities, Samarkand. This wide avenued wonder mixes striking 20th century architecture with buildings linked to a storied past back to the times of illustrious ruler Amir Timur – you'll visit his nearby birthplace Shakrisabz. As well as the majestic Registan Square, the epic mosque of Bibi Khanum, the ancient Ulug Beg observatory or the wonderful Afrosiyab Museum.