Central Asia has always been a cultural and intellectual crossroads. Discover 2500 years of history as you travel through Uzbekistan – minarets soar towards the sky, bazaars bustle with commerce and blue-tiled madrasahs sparkle in the sunlight. The Uzbeks are hospitable, gregarious, generous and universally kind so it may well be the people that leave the most lasting impression!
Tashkent A fascinating ancient city which sees an interesting mix of modern office buildings, hotels and parks alongside crumbling Soviet-style apartment blocks. Visit the Barak Khan Madrasah, the world’s oldest Uthman Quran (8th century).
Samarkand A majestic city which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site with monuments of ancient architecture, a heritage of scientists and arts schools and artisans’ workshops. Visit the Bibi-Khanym Mosque, one of the most impressive historic mosques in Central Asia. Immerse yourself in the colours, scents and sounds of the Siab bazaar with an abundance of produce and handicrafts.
Bukhara A living museum city and UNESCO World Heritage Site, with 140 monuments dotted about the city. Explore the former capital of the powerful Emirate of Bukhara, the most complete example of a medieval city in Central Asia. The centre is an architectural preserve, full of madrasahs, minarets, a massive royal fortress and the remnants of a market complex.
Khiva Once an important trade hub situated along the Great Silk Road, it is now a sleepy town which is split into the old and new town. The old town is a labyrinth of narrow mud-walled alleyways and stunning blue mosaics.
Kunya Urgench Located in the north-east of Uzbekistan and a treasured destination which attracts visitors with stunning ruins and beautiful architecture, with well-preserved monuments and buildings dating back to the 11th century.
The best time to go is during April – June with clear skies, sunshine and cool air creating perfect conditions. July can be extremely hot. In September – October the days will remain warm.
Currency Uzbek sum
Language The main language and the only official language is Uzbek.
Why we love it You will come away with many unique travel experiences! It sits along the rich ancient highway called the Silk Road so Uzbekistan is home to a number of ancient and medieval monuments. The great cities of Samarkand, Bukhara, and Shakhrisabz are all UNESCO World Heritage sites.
Weather The best time to go is during April – June with clear skies, sunshine and cool air creating perfect conditions. July can be extremely hot. In September – October the days will remain warm.
Social customs & quirks There are a number of customs that travellers need to be aware of when in Uzbekistan. The traditional Uzbek bread called lipioshka should never be placed upside down or on the ground, even if wrapped in paper or plastic. Women should always wear modest clothes, never shorts, in public places. Displaying wealth such as jewellery is generally frowned upon.
Festivals & events The biggest and most culturally significant event is the Boysun Bahori, or the Boysun Spring Festival. Held in mountainous Boysun in Surkhandarya Province, this festival dates back to pre-Islam times and features costumes, songs, dance performances and storytelling. This event is so immersed in history and culture that UNESCO has named the Boysun cultural space as a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.
Health* Please contact your General Practitioner for advice regarding the recommended vaccination programme for travellers to this region. The only compulsory health requirement is a Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate if coming from, or travelling through, an infected area. Malaria precautions should be taken.
Notes *Please be aware that Health information is subject to change at any time and you should always double check these requirements at the time of booking and before travel.