A trip to ancient cities of Uzbekistan and Tajikistan is the best tour for those who are interested in the culture and history of Central Asia. Enjoy your visit to such famous cities as Panjakent, Khujand, Istaravshan and the main cities of Uzbekistan.
07:30 Departure for Bukhara by tourist train “Afrosiab”/” Sharq”.
11:19 Arrival in Bukhara.
Come out of the terminal and meet the guide and driver at the meeting zone.
Transfer to the historical centre .
Start sightseeing program in Bukhara mostly walking (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;
- Ulughbek and Abdulazizkhan Madrassas or so called Kosh (pare) madrassas opposite each other with 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 imagination of visitors;
- 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.
- Samanids mausoleum;
Resting time in the evening. Overnight at the hotel.
Excursion tour in Shakhrisabz includes visiting ( 2 ,5 hrs)
- Ak Saray Palace (“White Palace”), the ruins of the summer palace of Tamerlane. The palace was constructed and decorated by deported from conquered Khorezm skillful builders, masters and artisans. Some parts of the gate tower survived to the present day.
- Mausoleum of Dorus-Saodat ("The Place of Power", XIV century) contains the tomb of Eldest and favourite Tamerlane’s son Jahongir.
- Visit Kok Gumbaz, so-called “House of Meditation.
- Mausoleum Gumbazi-Seyidon of XVI century where the descendants of Ulugbek are buried.
Continue to Samarkand. Arrival in Samarkand. Hotel check in.
Gur Emir Mausoleum – a burial vault of Timur the Great and his descendants is decorated with gold ornaments and is considered as one of the most significant sights of the world;
- famous Registan Square – heart of Samarkand and real masterpiece of Central Asian medieval architecture, consists of three grandiose buildings: Ulughbek Madrassa, Madrassa Sherdor and Madrassa Tilla Kori;
- Bibi Khanim Mosque – the biggest medieval building in the city was one of the most magnificent mosques in the Islamic world in 15 Century;
- Shahi Zinda Necropolis – unique complex of Mausoleums formed by standing on both sides of the cenotaph (an imaginary grave) of the Muslim saint Abbas ibn- Kussam;
- Ulugbek’s Observatory – the finest astronomical centers in medieval world was built by order of Ulugbek, an outstanding scholar and astronomer;
08:00 Transfer to border Jartepa. Border crossing (it usually takes 30 min- 1 hr).
Meet the guide and driver at 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 dammed origin, beside 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 - 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, foundation of the houses.
- The Sarazm Important BirdArea (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 guesthouse near lakes.
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.
Overview Sightseeing in Istaravshan visiting:
- Mazori Sharif mausoleum,
- Kog Gumbaz madrasa (16 century)
- Kuhi Mug, the ruins of ancient fortress.
Continue to Khujand , the second largest city and one of the oldest cities in Tajikistan, 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 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).
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 in August 31, 1994 after of the Amir Temur to honor the cultural and historical contribution of the great conqueror. Monument of Amir Timur (Tamerlane) is a bronze figure sitting on a horse and famous motto of the commander, engraved in four languages: “Justice is force”. Around the Square there are the State Museum of History of Timurids, Uzbekistan hotel, Forum Palace and famous chimes.
- Tashkent chimes, one of major symbols of Tashkent, were brought from defeated Koenisberg in 1945 by Sergeant Eisenstein as a gift to the native city. The chimes were installed on 9 May 1947 as a sign of the great victory and eternal glory of patriots who fought and died in World War II.
- Theatre Square with the Opera House: State Academic Bolshoi Theatre of Uzbekistan named after Alisher Navoi builit in 1947 is one of the best opera theatre of the world performs both classical and national repertoires, The theatre building survived undamaged after the strong earthquake in 1966 and impresses the visitors not only with monumental facade but also with exquisite decorative interior in national design of foyer. In front of the building there are fountains reminding the cotton bolls in shapes, the fountains are colored lit at night.
- Independence Square , the main square of Uzbekistan reflects the past, present and future of the country. There are fountains standing for life energy of Uzbek people, the Cabinet and the Senate, the “Eternal flame" in honor of soldiers who died during the Second World War, arch " Good and noble aspiration" crowned with birds of happiness and prosperity, road "Ok Yul" (“Good way”) leading to Independence Monument and a monument to Happy Mother that symbolize the hope for a great future. One can often see the newlyweds who start a family and independent life walking through the arch of “Good and noble aspirations”, laying flowers at the monument of Happy mother and “Eternal flame”.
- Earthquake Memorial, the composition is devoted to the tragic date of earthquake in Tashkent on April 26, 1966 and is erected in the approximate place of 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 the pilgrims and visitors all over the world.
Transfer to the hotel.
Resting time in the evening. Overnight at the hotel.
E-visa to Uzbekistan and Tajikistan ( if required);
Meals (lunches and dinners);
Photo/video fees ( professional camera);
Uzbekistan: Transport and guide service for free time and after the standard city tours (can be added by request);
Personal /travel insurance; charges in hotels for additional services; tips and gratuities, portage; other services not specified under “Tour price includes”.
Check-in 14.00, checkout time 11.00. No early check in, late check out are included, unless indicated.
• Please note that the drivers do not speak English or can speak only basic English.
• All the changes in the basic itinerary, timing for transfers depending the international flights departure/arrival time are to be discussed and pre-agreed with Tour Operator
• Train tickets are booked/bought as per the actual schedule and train tickets availability. Please note that the train trip/s MIGHT be replaced for transfer/s by car depending on train tickets availability and trains schedule.