Top 5: things to experience in Uzbekistan
Among the lesser-visited places of the world, Uzbekistan is one of the final frontiers left. A former soviet nation, located in the dry stretches of land in Central Asia, it has an array of enchanting places and cities for travellers who love to explore the rich culture, history and heritage. The people here are called ‘Uzbeks’.
Read on as Desi Tripper Alifiya Padghawala transports us into the world of Aladdin.
Samarkand, a city that offers a fascinating arsenal of Islamic architecture and historical sites. It is located along the Silk Road, an ancient trade route that linked China to the Mediterranean. During your travel here, you are in for some magnificent mosques, madrasas and mausoleums such as the Registan Mosque, Bibi-Khanum Mosque, Shakhi-Zinda compound and Ulugh-Beg’s Observatory. A melting pot of cultures, this city will certainly be a highlight for your travel!
Pro tip: Visit these structures at Sunrise or Sunset, the sight of them at the golden hour will leave you spellbound!
2. Uzbek cuisine
If you are a Foodie Tripper, then you are in luck! Home to some of the most eclectic dishes, The Plov is the national dish here. Dumplings are also a trending dish. They are prepared with a variety of stuffings and shapes. Manti, Samsa and Guzlama are among the popular ones. Uzbek food is certainly heavy on meat, and almost every dish uses it. Some of the popular dishes are Shashlik, Shurpa (a type of soup) and Lagman. Yoqimli Ishtaha! (Bon Appétit.)
3. UNESCO Heritage sites
Owing to the rich culture and architecture, Uzbekistan is a proud home to not one but 5 UNESCO listed Heritage sites. They are Itchan Kala, Historic Centre of Bukhara, Historic Centre of Shakhrisyabz, Samarkand and the Western Tien-Shan Mountains.
4. Tashkent, the Capital city of Uzbekistan
After the city was devastated due to the 1966 earthquake, it was rebuilt in Soviet-style, with markets, plazas, monuments and statues. A cosmopolitan and well-developed city, it is the economic and political centre and reflects a mélange of the modern era and Soviet architecture. Travellers must definitely visit the Amir Timur Museum, Yunus Khan Mausoleum and Kukeldash Madrasah. The city is also one of the most popular destinations for shopaholics. It houses some of the most superlative bazaars like the Chorsu Bazaar, Karavan Bazaar and Yangiobad Flea Market. A legacy left by the Russians during the Soviet era, Russian vodka and Karaoke bars are a popular tradition here.
5. The cities of Khiva and Bukhara
Like Tashkent and Samarkand, these cities are also located along the Silk route. Bukhara is an authentic city with a marvellous architectural legacy and buildings spanning thousands of years in history. Known as Central Asia’s holiest city, it is full of madrasas and minarets, a royal fortress called The Ark and a vast market complex. Some of the must-visit sites are the Poi-Kalyan, Bolo Khauz mosque, the Ark fortress as well as the Lyab-i-Hauz complex. Khiva is a quiet and less inhabited city, popular for its long history of barbaric cruelty and slavery. Wandering through its city gates, it’s not hard to feel like you are stepping into another era. For instance, a clustered array of mosques, minarets and buildings gives one a sense of how much of a hustling-bustling town it must have been in history. Visit Juma Mosque, Islom-Hoja Minaret, Isfandiyar Palace And The Bazaar.
In conclusion,we hope you find this blog helpful. If you would like to know more about the country of Uzbekistan, let us know in the comments below. Happy Tripping!
If you enjoyed reading this, do check out our blog on Top 5: Spots for a Culture Tripper in Istanbul.