Best Seller Uzbekistan – Tajikistan Tour combines the historical and natural attractions of the famous Seven lakes in Fann Mountains, discover the oriental pearls of the Great Silk Road - Bukhara, Samarkand, and Tashkent!
Start WALKING sightseeing program in Bukhara (5-6 hours):
- Ensemble Lyabi Hauz (Nadir Divanbegi Madrassa, Khanaka, Kukeldash Madrassa and the monument of Khodja Nasreddin);
- Magoki Attari Mosque is one of the oldest mosques survived in Bukhara from the time before the Mongolian invasion;
- Abdullakhan’s Tim with numerous handicraft shops of souvenirs, ceramics, national clothes, and carpets;
- Caravanserai Sayfuddin (the Center of Handicraft Development of Bukhara);
- There are three trading domes or so called covered bazaars Toki Sarrofon, Toki Telpak Furushon, and Toki Zargaron preserved from the XVI century and these bazaars were the centers for trade of silk, jewelry and even for money exchange. Today as well, one can enjoy and purchase different souvenirs of a wide range, from small souvenir magnets to the famous Bukhara carpets;
- Visit Ulugbek and Abdulazizkhan Madrassas or so-called Kosh (pare) madrassas opposite each other with the distinctive style of facade ornamental decoration;
- Poi Kalon Square with Kalon Minaret and Mosque, Mir Arab Madrassa – the heart of Bukhara, a monumental complex impresses the imagination;
- Ark Fortress – the oldest citadel dating back to I century BC where one can feel the history of the great fortress covered in beautiful legends and myths.
12:00 Transfer to Samarkand (270 km), en-route visiting famous Gijduvan pottery workshop where visitors are welcome for a tour around the workshop and observe the process of ceramic making and painting.
The owners demonstrate the stages of making ceramics from turning the potter’s wheel to making paints from natural ingredients, decorating the ceramics in a distinctive style, drying, and firing. Take a tour around the museum hall of ceramic masterpieces with a unique collection of the ceramic items of Gijduvan and other regions of Uzbekistan.
By request, a master-class of painting ceramics, suzani embroidery, and traditional bread baking.
Continue to Samarkand.
Arrive in Samarkand in the afternoon, check-in the hotel.
Resting time in the evening. Overnight at the hotel.
– Gur Emir Mausoleum – a burial vault of Timur the Great and his descendants decorated with gold ornaments and considered as one of the most significant places in the world;
– Continue to the famous Registan Square – the heart of Samarkand and a real masterpiece of Central Asian medieval architecture consisting of three grandiose buildings: Ulughbek Madrassa, Madrassa Sherdor, and Madrassa Tilla Kori.
– Bibi Khanim Mosque – the biggest medieval building in the city which was one of the most magnificent mosques in the Islamic world in the 15th Century;
– Shahi Zinda Necropolis – unique complex of Mausoleums formed by standing on both sides of the cenotaph (an imaginary grave) belonging to the Muslim person named Saint Abbas ibn-Kussam;
08:00 Transfer to border Jartepa. Border crossing (it usually takes 30 min- 1 hr).
Meet the guide and driver at the Tajikistan part of the border.
- Transfer to Marguzor, the famous seven lakes - seven wonderful water mirrors full of mountain riverside drops. Each lake looks different whenever the sun changes its position. Colors may vary from deep blue to indie color ripple. Most of them are cold to swim even in summer. These lakes belong to Fann Mountains system.
On the western edge of the Fan Mountains in the valley of the river Shing there are seven lakes, six of them are of dammed origin, besides the lake Hazorchashma. Lakes are called Marguzor, but each of the lakes has its own name: Nezhigon (other references Mizhgon), Soybean, Gushor, Nofin, Hurdak, Marguzor, Hazorchashma. The difference in level between the upper and lower lake is 692 meters.
Transfer to Penjikent to visit:
- Ancient Penjikent - the ruins of the old Sogdian town founded in the 5th century and abandoned in the 8th century by Arabs. The ruins were once a citadel with a couple of Zoroastrian fire temples, the foundation of the houses.
- The Sarazm Important Bird Area (UNESCO World Heritage) lies downstream of the city on the tugay-vegetated floodplain of the river.
Transfer to the hotel.
Resting time in the evening. Overnight in a hotel.
- Located in the northern foothills of the Turkistan mountain range, 78 km southwest from Khudjand , Istaravshan is one of the most ancient cities of Tajikistan (more than 2500 years) ancient name Cyropolis founded by Cyrus the Great in 544 BC as a boarding fort of Achaemenid Empire.
During the Soviet era, the city was known as Ura-Tyube.
Breakfast at the hotel. 09:00 Start Khujand sightseeing tour.
Khujand, the second-largest city and one of the oldest cities in Tajikistan, was the furthest point Alexander the Great reached in Central Asia, so the city was named Alexandria Eschate (Alexandria the Furthest). Sightseeing tour on arrival:
- Pushkin square with Kamoli Khudjandi Square;
- Timur Malik’s fortress and Sugd museum;
- Muslihiddin memorial complex;
- Panjshanbe bazaar (the name Panjshanbe comes from the Persian language meaning “Thursday”). Panjshanbe is one of the oldest markets in Tajikistan.
- Arbob palace.
Afternoon border crossing BP Oybek to Uzbekistan (takes about 30 min-1 hr), meet the driver at Uzbekistan side of the border. Transfer to Tashkent (appr. 2 hrs drive).
Resting time in the evening. Overnight at the hotel.
09:00 Meet the guide and driver at the hotel's lobby.
Start sightseeing tour of Tashkent (5 hrs) visiting old and new parts of the city:
- Amir Timur Square, founded in 1882 and originally called Konstantinovsky Square, was renamed on August 31, 1994, after the Amir Timur to honor the cultural and historical contribution of the great conqueror.
- Theater Square with the Opera House: State Academic Theater of Uzbekistan named after Alisher Navoi built in 1947 is one of the best opera theaters in the world that performs both classical and national repertoires.
- Independence Square, the main square of Uzbekistan reflects the past, present, and future of the country. There are fountains standing for the life energy of Uzbek people, the Cabinet and the Senate, the “Eternal flame" in honor of soldiers who died during the Second World War. - Earthquake Memorial, the composition is devoted to the tragic date of the earthquake in Tashkent on April 26, 1966, and is erected in the approximate place of the earthquake epicenter. Residents still come to the monument to honor those people who took a part in the reconstruction of Tashkent.
- Khast Imam Square – a religious center of the city consisting of the Barakkhan madrasah; Kaffal Shashi Mausoleum and the library of Islamic Literature with the Holy Koran Book of the VII century (original Quran Othman). Khast Imam is one of the most significant spiritual centers in Central Asia and attracts pilgrims and visitors all over the world.
- Chorsu bazaar – the ancient bazaar of Tashkent. “Chorsu” means “four water”, symbolically meaning the conjunction of four major parts of the old city in the bazaar where people come for trades. The bazaar beautiful blue dome, built in traditional style after the Tashkent earthquake, is often depicted in postcards and international magazines and became one of the major sights of interest both for locals and guests – one can see oriental tiled bazaar from different souvenir shops with ceramics, handicraft works, carpets and jewelry, the whole pavilion full of delirious fruits to the finest textiles and colorful fabrics.
- Tashkent Metro (the first line was launched in 1977) with beautiful train stations each decorated in thematic style with traditional ornaments and special lightning.
Transfer to Tashkent International Airport. The evening departure flight from Tashkent.