ROUTE: Tashkent – Charvak reservoir (SPA hotel) – Urgench (Khiva) – Bukhara – yurt camp (Lake Aydarkul) – Samarkand – Tashkent
14 days / 13 nights
We invite you to an unforgettable journey through the most picturesque and unique country of Central Asia – Uzbekistan
Mountains of Uzbekistan have become a favorite place for many adventure lover. In the Chimgan tract, which is in the western spurs of the Tien Shan ridge, just an hour’s drive from Tashkent you will get the opportunity to see the beautiful scenery, breathe the fresh mountain air, make trip on foot or ride a horse to have a look to picturesque mountainous corners with rivulets, waterfalls, swim in the warm and affectionate waters of the Charvak reservoir. There are many entertainments that can be loved by anyone. Many families come here to relax. A cool summer, mild winter make the surroundings of Chimgan a wonderful resting place. There are children’s camps, climate resorts and rest homes. The height of the residence in Chimgan is 1600 m. Apart from the mountains you will have a chance to travel around whole Uzbekistan. You will be able to see a historical monuments of some cities of Uzbekistan such as Khiva, Bukhara and Samarkand. You will also have a chance to swim in the beautiful and clean lake Aydarkul
KHAREZM – KHIVA
The city museum or “the open air museum” is located in the territory of the Kyzyl-Kum desert near the Amu Darya river. According to one of the legends the name city get from a well “khivak” which was dug by the son of Noah whose name was Sim . Throughout centuries, Khiva repeatedly experienced periods of decline and recovery, until it reached the peak of development in the XIX century. Ichan-kala is an “inner city” (26 hectares), which was formed around the citadel. It is surrounded by powerful fortress walls (height -10 m, length – 2200 m), which are an example of medieval fortifications. Almost all architectural objects of the exhibition were built within the walls of Ichan-kala, which constitute the historically formed image of the city of the XVII-XIX centuries.
Bukhara had repeatedly won, collapsed, lost its international significance as the center of spiritual culture in the East. But each time Bukhoro-i-Sharif (the “noble Bukhara”) was restored again, its economy, science and art were reborn, new buildings were built. After the domination of the Tajik Samanid dynasty (IX-XIV), Bukhara probably reached its peak in the second half of the XVI century. By the XVI century the city was the capital of the independent Bukhara khanate, and by the middle of the XVIII century it was the capital of the emirate. The central part of the “old” city is an integral architectural ensemble. In Bukhara and its environs there are more than 500 architectural monuments of different times and epochs.
Lake AYDARKUL – Yurt camp
Lake Aydarkul is an oasis in the desert, a wonderful blue expanse, lying on the gold frame of the desert sand Kyzyl-Kum. Its fate is interesting. For a long time it lay all alone. The water was quite salty, as evidenced by its name – Tuzkan (uz.”tuz”-solt). Lifeless were the shores of this doomed to a slow drying of the lake. However, in the spring of 1969 as a result of unusually high floods on the Syrdarya River the of water it flooded into Arnasay spill and headed west into the depths of sand filled the vast salt-marsh depression Aydar and united with the waters of the lake Tuzkan, turned it into a part of a huge body of water stretching for the Southern outskirts of the Kyzylkum desert for almost 200 km. The waters of the Syr Darya breathed new life into a dying lake. Its surface was increased many times, water has become fresher, turned green shore, there are many fish and waterfowl. On the winding banks of new reservoirs, many shallows and lagoons. Among the bluish expanse seen small golden island – a large sand dunes were surrounded by water. Their shores were covered with sedge, a lot of birds settled on them. On some of islets you can see colonies of large white birds – pelicans. The ponds are rich in fish.There are carp, asp, pike perch, pike. Lake Aydarkul is an oasis in the desert, a wonderful blue expanse, lying in the golden frame of the sands.
SAMARKAND – the Pearl of the East
Samarkand is more than 2700 years old. “Pearl of the East” – the so-called chroniclers and poets of the past. The city witnessed many historical events. Its walls were opposed to the armies of Alexander the Great (the end of the IV century BC), to the forces of the Arab Caliphate (VIII century), but the city was destroyed to the ground by the hordes of Genghis Khan ( XIII century) and could not be restored to its original location. In the XIV-XV centuries. Samarkand becomes the capital of a huge empire of formidable Amir Timur (Tamerlane), who dreamed of making it the capital of the world. Now it is the second largest city in the Republic of Uzbekistan, where “gray antiquity” and modernity peacefully side by side.
SHAKHRISABZ- Green city
100 km from Samarkand is the city of Shakhrisabz (“Green City”) – the birthplace of Amir Timur (Tamerlane). In the XIV-XV centuries. It was the main city of the Kesh region, ancestral lands of the Turkic-Mongolian tribe “barlas”, to which the formidable Tamerlane belonged. Under Timur, Shakhrisabz was experiencing an unprecedented heyday and was built up by luxurious monumental buildings. Since the XVI century the city had been gradually declining. At the beginning of the XIX century it was the residence of the local bek. Now it is a modern city with 25 centuries of the past. The way to the city lies along the picturesque foothills and spurs of the Zeravshan range (Pamir-Alai mountain system). Then there is a climb along the serpentine road to the pass Takhta-Karacha (1675 m). From the height of the pass you can see a bluish-green spot of the oasis in the upper reaches of the Kashkadarya River, where Shakhrisabz is located.
TASHKENT is the capital of Uzbekistan
It is located between the western foot of the Tien Shan mountain system and the Syr Darya river. This is a modern metropolis, which is the focus of political and economic life of the Republic of Uzbekistan. The first mention of Tashkent (referred to at that time as Shash) dates back to the II century BC. Wars and natural disasters destroyed many historical monuments of different epochs. After a devastating earthquake in 1966, the city almost completely was ruined and then rebuilt. New buildings, decorated with mosaics and stucco decorations in the national Uzbek style, make Tashkent an attractive and interesting city.
- This route is valid from April 1 to October 1 (seasonal operation of the yurt camp);
- The maximum number of people in a group is 18
For the active part of the route, you must have:
- Comfortable shoes with thickened soles.
- Headgear to protect against direct sunlight.
- Swimming suits.
- Sunburn and mosquito repellent.
- Warm clothes for evening time.
The programs for staying on the route of the 1st and last days depend on the time of arrival to the place where the tour starts and the time of departure from the final destination, therefore, they may change.
What’s included in the tour
- TOUR COST INCLUDES
- AIR & FILE TICKETS FOR INTERNAL FLIGHTS
- MOTOR TRANSPORT
- GUIDE SERVICES
- ACCOMMODATION IN B & B HOTELS
- LUNCHES AND DINNERSYES INPUT TICKETS FOR THE PROGRAM
Arrival at the international airport of Tashkent. You will be met by a representative of our organization and will accompany you to the hotel, located in the Chimgan mountains (spurs of the Tien-Shan Ridge) on the coast of the Charvak reservoir. Transfer by car to the hotel complex “Charos Deluxe Resort and Spa” (80km 1,5 hours).
DAY 2 & 3
The unforgettable hikes in mountains, horse walks, and also swimming in warm, tender waters of the Charvak sea are waiting for you . You will have an opportunity to actively participate in cooking national dishes of Uzbekistan on an open fire, as well as exclusive evenings of national folklore music and dances, famous for its unique grace and plasticity. The pristine beauty of mountain landscapes and flowering nature will indelibly impress , and pure mountain air will help you quickly get acclimatized and gain strength before traveling through the ancient and majestic cities of Uzbekistan.
Early transfer to the Tashkent airport of local airlines for the Tashkent-Urgench flight.
Arrival to the international airport of Urgench and transfer to Khiva (35km).
Accommodation and breakfast in the hotel upon arrival. After that you will go on an exciting walking tour of the architectural monuments of Ichan-Kala. You will see madrassah Muhammad Amin Khan with unfinished minaret (tower for calling for prayer), that’s why it is called Kalta Minor ( “Unfinished minaret”). Its height is 26 m; complex Kunya Ark (fortress-palace), but in the opposite side is madrassah (Muslim spiritual school) of Muhammad Rahim Khan. Next, you will pass the only surviving monument of the XIV century – the mausoleum of Sayid Alauddin. From it to the left until the end of the narrow streets you will follow along the madrassah Kari Khan is now the repair shops and stores. Again, turn left and go down the steps to the madrasah Shirgazi Khan, on the opposite side , you will see the mausoleum Pakhlavan-Mahmoud. Directly on the direction of travel – a slender minaret of Islam-Hodge beautifully decorated with colored tiles, and near – madrassa and a mosque – it is the whole ensemble, which is located in front of the building of European architecture, built for Islam-Khoja new approached school. Next, go to the main street of Ichan-Kala, where the cathedral is located right Juma mosque with a minaret and, following further yourself in the market square. To the right is a building of Ak-mosque, behind which there are public baths, and the left – madrassas Qutlugh Mudad-INAC with the underground storage of water – Sardoba. On the other hand there is another ensemble of buildings Alla Kuli Khan: madrassah with richly decorated portal, team (indoor shopping arcade) and a caravanserai. On the opposite side of the street – Palace Tash-Hawley with rich decoration of the walls (tiles, painting). Your tour can interrupt only for lunch and dinner from the Uzbek city of Khorezm dishes in the restaurant.
After breakfast in the hotel you travel by car to Bukhara (450km). Ecological tour of Uzbekistan continues. You will pass through the Kyzyl-Kum desert. Accommodation at the hotel upon arrival. You will have late luch in one of the restaurants of the city . During free time you can take a walk along the streets of the “old city”, where you will be able to see souvenir shops with goods for every taste. Dinner at the restaurant of the city.
Breakfast at the hotel.
Tour of the architectural monuments of the X-XIX centuries (main part of the display objects is concentrated in the “old part” of the city, which is a pedestrian zone and is dotted with narrow medieval streets). The first display object – it is the core of the ancient Bukhara – Ark Fortress (I-XIX centuries). 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). You will be able to see ensemble Bolo Haouz Mosque (XVIII, XX centuries), the mausoleum – a dynastic tomb of the Samanids (late start IX- X), XIV century architectural structure – mazar (shrine) – Chashma-Ayub, erected over the well of the legendary (Chashma) Prophet Ayub (Job). If the previous objects , which embedded in the modern Bukhara building, the central part of the “old” city is a holistic architectural ensemble of XVI-XVII centuries: a complex of buildings Poi Kalyan ( “Beneath the Great”), grouped around the highest minaret Bukhara – Kalon (tower convocation to prayer). It was built in 1127 its height – 47m, inside – 105 steps leading to the top; 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-XII. Reconstruction and updates were made in 1514; in front of the mosque is a building of Mir-Arab, erected influential Sheikh (head of a religious order) in the 1535-36 years. Old part of Bukhara is famous not only because of the mausoleums or mosques but also due to the well preserved indoor shopping arcades – tims and very distinctive domed market buildings . In Doomed market buildings you can find dome of jewelers – Taki-Zargaron which belongs to XV century or – merchants dome hats – Tilpak-Furushon XVI dome changed – Taki-Sarafon and Tim Abdulla intended for sale silk.Walking down to the narrow streets of Bukhara, you will be taken to one of the largest reservoirs of the medieval city – Lyabi-House, built in 1620. For centuries, the territory on which the Lyabi- House, with the adjacent buildings that served as a place of recreation and leisure for the residents of Bukhara. This tradition has survived until present day. The excursion tour can be interrupted (if you wish, at any time) for lunch and dinner in city restaurants.
Breakfast at the hotel.
Departure to the suburban residence of the last Bukhara emirs – Sitora-i-Mahi-Khasa (late XIX-1918). The old palace, erected by Bukhara masters, who studied Russian architecture in St. Petersburg and Yalta, is a mixture of European and Bukhara styles. The new palace is a whole complex of buildings (also of mixed Eastern and European styles): the gate arch, the harem, the greenhouse, the covered gallery and the main building. The interiors of the White Hall and the reception room are most interesting in this palace. The walls and ceilings are decorated with the richest carvings and ganch paintings (gypsum) in the traditions of Bukhara architectural and decorative school. To the undoubted sights of Mahasa (so lovingly called its Bukharans) it is necessary to include carved gates with wrought copper nails and handles decorated with thin chasing. The palaces are located in a beautiful park with a variety of ornamental and fruit trees, lawns, a huge pond. At one time, part of the territory was occupied by a zoological garden, where gazelles, pheasants and peacocks roamed the grass, the latter are freely walking now. Saying goodbye to Bukhara, you will make a move to a yurt camp in the Kyzyl-Kum desert near the Aidarkul Lake (180 km). Accommodation in Kazakh yurts (felt tents) upon arrival. Dinner. Free time. You can go to the lake (5km from the location). Dinner. Rest by the fire. Overnight.
Breakfast at the hotel
You can go on vacation to the lake, or you can try to ride a camel in the vicinity of the camp. After lunch the journey will continue by auto-transfer to Samarkand (210km). Accommodation at the hotel upon arrival. Dinner at the restaurant of the city.
Breakfast at the hotel.
Breakfast at the hotel and our excursion tour to the architectural monuments of Samarkand XII-XX centuries continues: magnificent mosque Bibi Khanum Mosque, built by order of Timur (Tamerlane) in 1404. It was the tallest structure and lavishly decorated in the East at that time; the central area of the “old” city – the “heart” of Samarkand – Registan ensemble ( “sandy place”). Initially, there were shopping arcade, located caravanserais, bathhouses, trading pavilions, benches small artisans. The 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 became a major science center of the East. At that time, Ulugbek decided to build the madrasah (Muslim spiritual school) in the market square of Registan. In the XVII century in the opposite side of Ulugbek madrassah military leader Yalantush Bahadur gave the order to build another madrassah Sher-Dor – “having tigers” (1619-1636). 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” (1646-1660), which was erected 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; Timurid dynastic tomb – Gur Emir (1404-1405 additional extension – the XV-XVII centuries). Initially the mausoleum was built due to the death grandson Muhammad-Sultan, who was to become the ruler of Maverannahr after Timur’s death. However in 1405 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, it became known as Gur-Emir – “tomb of the Emir.” . Gur Emir may draws attention because of 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 gravestones. Central – from a single piece of black and green jade – is installed over the grave of Timur. The excursion program will be interrupted only for lunch in one of the restaurants of the city, and for dinner you are expected in the Uzbek national house where you will taste Uzbek Uzbek cuisine, the most delicious and varied in Uzbekistan.
Breakfast at the hotel.
After having a breakfast at the hotel a guide and you will go by car to the hometown of Amir Timur (Tamerlane) – Shakhrisabz (about 100 km). You will drive through the picturesque countryside of the foothills and spurs of the Zeravshan Range (Pamir Alai mountain system). Climb the serpentine road to the pass Davenport Karachi (1675m). It offers a magnificent view of the great valley, lying in a frame of the mountains and is known as the Kitab-Shahrisabz koy. From the height of the pass you will see a blue-green oasis spot in the upper reaches of Kashkadarya river. Unforgettable impression! Going down from the mountains into the valley, you will soon arrive at the Shakhrisabz, known in III-I BC under the name – Kesh. Only in the XIV century he began to wear the current title. It was the patrimony of the Turko-Mongol tribe, “Barlas”, which belonged to the great Tamerlane. The most imposing structure at the time was the summer palace Ak-Saray – “White Palace” (1380-1404), built by order of Timur. From grand palace there were only two pylons (foundations) of the entrance portal, supported by lateral towers. Above the arch, according to the chronicles, it was written saying terrible Timur: “If you doubt our greatness, look at our facilities.” To the south of the Ak-Saray is cult-memorial complex Dorut Tilyavat (the end of the XIV century – 1st half of the XV century) and to the east – Dorus Siadat (1379 / 80-1404). After seeing the historical sights of Shakhrisabz, you go for lunch in national Uzbek house where you will be offered to try Uzbek food. After receiving a lot of impressions from the tour and dine, you will return to Samarkand by the same route. After having a rest in the hotel, you go to dinner at one of the restaurants in town.
Breakfast at the hotel.
Continuation of the tour of historical sites will begin with a visit to the Museum of the founding of the city, on the territory of the ancient hillfort Afrasiab, where you will see the world-famous original wall painting (VIIc) of one of the palaces found during archaeological excavations. You will get acquainted with a large exposition of artifacts (from VIII BC up to XIII century), found by expeditions of archeologists in the site of the ancient settlement. The city-fortress Afrasiab – the ancestor of Samarkand, ceased to exist in the XIII century after the invasion of Genghis Khan hordes and the inhabitants moved to the south-west of it, to the territory of present Samarkand. Your excursion program in Samarkand ends with a visit to the Ulugbek Memorial Museum (grandson of Tamerlane) and an examination of the remains of the observatory built by his order in 1428-29, which was not equal in the entire Muslim East at that time. Ulugbek was not only the ruler of a huge country, but also a great scientist of his time, an outstanding astronomer. A lot of data obtained at the Samarkand Observatory, scientists of Europe enjoyed until the XVII century. In the museum you will see exhibits telling about the “Astronomical Academy of the East” and its remarkable creator. Next to the museum there is the grave of the Russian archaeologist V.L. Vyatkin, who first discovered the traces of the observatory in 1908. Lunch in one of the restaurants of the city. Next, you go to a suburb of Samarkand, where there is a place called Kan-i Gil. Through it runs the brook Ab-i Rahmat (“Blessed waters”). This place is known since XIV century. Here, court feasts and folk festivals were arranged, tents and tents were broken. Currently, this area is built up by private sector houses. Here, on the bank of the Ab-i Rahmat stream, there is 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 the silk paper produced on them replaced the papyrus paper in Europe already in the 14th century. Enthusiasts revived the ancient technology of artisan making paper from the bark of the mulberry tree and now it is a place of pilgrimage for tourists coming to Samarkand. Masters will show you the entire process of work, after which you will have the opportunity to purchase your favorite products from silk paper. This is a wonderful souvenir for memory – typically Samarkand. You will have time until dinner in one of the city’s restaurants, during which you can walk around the city on your own.
Breakfast at the hotel.
Departure by road to the mountain village (village) – 35 km on the road. You will get a breath of fresh air of the foothills, get acquainted with the rural Uzbek way of life, customs, family traditions, participate in the preparation of pilaf and shurpa (Uzbek national soup), and then you will eat yourself with the cooked dishes. Departure to Samarkand. Dinner at one of the city’s restaurants.
Breakfast at the hotel.
Visiting the largest Samarkand bazaar “Siab”, which occupies the territory of 7 hectares and is on this place from the 9th c. There is no dictionary in the world that can describe the diversity and abundance of the eastern bazaar. It is necessary to verify this on your own. After lunch in the modern national Uzbek house, where you will be offered dishes of Uzbek Samarkand food, transfer to the railway station in order to set off for the electric journey to the capital of our Motherland – Tashkent (traveling time is 2h.10min.). Transfer to the hotel by car and accommodation. Dinner at one of the city’s restaurants.
Breakfast at the hotel.
Departure by car for a sightseeing tour around Tashkent with access to the display sites (3-4 hours). Your ecological tour of Uzbekistan is over at lunch in the restaurant of the city. Transfer to the international Tashkent airport, where we say goodbye to you and hope to see you again on hospitable Uzbek land on the tourist routes “AL SAMARKAND”!
Ирина Давидовна / Россия, 48 лет
Тур – Сказка Востока 2016
Хочу поделиться впечатлениями и написать отзыв о своей поездке в Узбекистан. Ну, во-первых никогда не думала, что здесь так много туристов из разных стран и на памятниках старины было не протолкнуться, но все грандиозно и здорово интересно. Но начну сначала. Прилетели мы с подругой в Ургенч (так была составлена программа самаркандской тур-фирмы, даже порекомендовали рейс из Москвы), нас встретили, перевезли в Хиву, разместили в маленьком и уютном отеле, накормили ужином и пожелали «спокойной ночи». Утром после завтрака гид пригласил нас на экскурсию во «внутренний город». Мама, дорогая, мы думали, что там потеряемся – это не объяснить словами! Нам повезло с гидом: ненавязчиво, информативно, с перерывами на кофеек, на обед, не заметили как день прошел (экскурсия-то пешеходная) и пора ужинать и спать. На следующий день выехали в Бухару (аж 6 часов по пустыне). Но наш гид Наталья Михайловна — Наташа) так интересно рассказывала в пути и об истории края, и о пустыне, и о быте здешнего народа и отвечала на все наши вопросы, что мы и не заметили, как въехали в Бухару. Да, уж действительно средневековый город. Жили мы в маленькой гостинице с европейскими услугами, но с восточным колоритом. Питались в разных ресторанах, но меню нигде не повторялось. Благодаря Наташе, нам стало известно, что в Узбекистане рестораны специализируются на каком-то одном блюде национальной кухни, т.е. в меню есть много других блюд, но только местные жители знают, где вкуснее готовят именно это блюдо (например, плов или манты). Дальше по маршруту нас ждал юртовый лагерь в пустыне. Представляете, вокруг желто-серый песок, на улице жара и мы, честно говоря, подумали – зачем нас сюда завезли и вдруг в лобовое стекло авто видим большое голубое пятно – это оказалось то самое озеро, к которому ехали. Потом, конечно и накупались, и на верблюдах накатались и у костра насиделись. В общем, классно провели время (кстати, хорошо, что мы послушали туроператора Ирину и захватили с собой крем от загара и от комаров, спасибо). На следующий день после обеда выехали в Самарканд. За 2 дня мы успели осмотреть все памятники по программе, побывать на бумажной фабричке (это класс!), на дегустации (два класса!!), поесть почти все блюда самаркандской кухни (три класса!!!), посетить базар – это вообще вне конкуренции. Хорошо загоревшие, с кучей сувениров и впечатлений вернулись домой. Мы влюбились в Узбекистан. Спасибо тур-фирме за грамотно и подробно составленную программу на маршрут как мы просили, за профессионализм сопровождающего гида и водителя. Такое впечатление, что они никогда не уставали. Мы с подругой решили, что и на следующий год обратимся в фирму «Аль-Самарканд» и поедем на другой маршрут.