The Classic Uzbekistan trip starts and ends in Tashkent. It is an explorer tour that takes 12 days taking you through Samarkand, Tashkent and Khiva in Uzbekistan. Classic Uzbekistan is a guided small group trip that includes accommodation in hotels, transport, meals and others.
Day 01: Arrive Tashkent
Xush kelibsiz! Welcome to Uzbekistan. The largest city in Central Asia with a population of over 2 million, Tashkent is a mix of Russian and Uzbek style, an indication of the fact that for many years it was a key city of the Soviet Republic. Your adventure begins with an important welcome meeting at airport & transfer to hotel. Overnight at hotel.
Day 02: Tashkent
Take the day to explore Tashkent with your group leader and fellow travellers. Pass by Amir Temur Square and then visit the Khast Imam complex – one of the most well-known images of Uzbekistan, which houses Barak Khan Madrassah, Kaffal Shashi mausoleum, the Quran Library and Mosque. A highlight of today is the Chorsu Bazaar – one of the largest and oldest markets in Central Asia. Wandering through this giant marketplace is a great way to see locals going about their daily lives. After wandering through the stalls, explore some of the rich cultural history of Uzbekistan with a visit to the 16th-century Kulkedash Medressa – an Islamic school that sits beside the 15th-century Juma (Friday) Mosque. You’ll also pass the elaborate Navoi Theatre, built with unique character and a stunning fountain in its forecourt.
Day 03: Nukus
After breakfast, transfer to the airport and take a morning flight bound for Nukus. Nukus is the capital of the autonomous region of Karakalpakstan, which takes up the entirety of the northwest of Uzbekistan. Once arrived, head 15 kilometres out of town to visit Mizdar Khan and Yusup Ishan necropolis. These acted as holy sites and are cemeteries for Zoroastrians – followers of an ancient religion dating all the way back to the fourth century BC. Here you’ll also find the remains of the Gyaur-Kala Fortress. Mizdar Khan town was once an important centre for handicrafts and trade, so keep an eye out for any remnants of its creative past. Later on, return to the Nukus and check into your hotel. In the afternoon, head with your group leader on a guided tour through the renowned Karakalpakstan State Museum of Art. This museum is a unique museum which houses the second most valuable Russian avant garde art collection, all collected by Igor Savitsky. Igor collected and moved the pieces to probably one of the poorest areas in the former Soviet Union – items that were faced with the fate of being destroyed by the authorities in the 1950s and 1960s. Here, you’ll also see historical relics and archeological objects that are closely related to the Karakalpakstan, and wider Central Asian cultures.
Day 04: Khiva
This morning, travel by bus to Khiva (approximately 4 hours). Khiva is beautifully preserved town and perfect for exploring on foot, with impressive walls that mark the inner boundaries of the old city – Itchan Kala. Upon entering its gates, you will see the towering turquoise Kalta Minor Minaret and the Mohammed Rahim Khan and Muhammad Amin Khan medressas. Visit the Kuhna Ark, which was the main fortress, and look over the city from the hill of the Ak-Sheikh Baba observation platform, once used as a patrol tower of the citadel. Finish at Pakhlavan Makhmud complex, the most remarkable architecture memorial complex in Khiva with its majolica tiles. You’ll feel a true sense of history here – perhaps even some you mightn’t have heard of before, and that’s the exciting bit. Uncovering lost tales of people and places far removed from the boring old encyclopaedias, this is real history.
Day 05: Khiva
Continue your historical escapade in Khiva and head to the 17th-century Djuma Mosque – a cathedral mosque with a roof that lies on 212 wooden-fretted columns, giving the structure unique acoustics and streams of lighting. Continue to the Islom Hoja Minaret and Medressa, as well the Tosh-Hovli Palace – a 19th century summer palace of Mohammed Rahim Khan II set in orchards and surrounded by walled gardens. With some free time this afternoon, why not walk up the inner city walls to get another perspective over the city, or get a couple of your travel pals together to enjoy a drink and the sunset over the ancient town.
Day 06: Bukhara
Refuel with some breakfast, then board a morning train bound for Bukhara (approximately 6 hours). Do not fear – your group leader will have organised some lunch for you on the train, but you might like to pick up some other snacks for your trip today if you get peckish. As today is a longer travel day, kick back and relax once you’ve arrived at your hotel. Later on in the evening, your group leader can take you for a short stroll in and around the Lyab-i Hauz ensemble – one of the few remaining central ponds in the heart of Bukhara’s Old Town.
Day 07: Bukhara
Bukhara is widely regarded as Central Asia’s holiest city, being part of the ancient Silk Road and listed as a World Heritage site. With more than 100 officially preserved monuments, there is a lot to see, and you’ll have the next couple of days to check out the rich tapestry of history on offer. Much of the monuments date back over 1000 years, and their meticulous restoration of mosaics and stone ornaments have ensured the magic of this old city isn’t lost. Today, begin with a visit to the fifth century Ark Fortress, which acts as the ancient heart of the city, as well as exploring the Poikalon, comprising of the Kalon Minaret and Mosque, and the Mir-i-Arab Medressa. Take a step onto the Great Silk Road with a visit to Bukhara’s trading domes which still stand since the Shaybanides dynasty, and discover the bazaars beneath alive with a buzz of activity. Tonight, gather together with your group in town and enjoy dinner with a traditional folk music and dance show.
Day 08: Samarkand
Have another day to get under the skin of Bukhara, taking another guided city tour with your small group. You’ll see the Ulugbek and Abdul Aziz Khan medressas, the Magoki-Attori Mosque and the grand four-pointed Chor Minor Minaret – try saying any of those names after a few glasses of the local brew. In the afternoon, take a train to Samarkand (approximately 1.5 hours), arriving in the early evening for a chilled-out night.
Day 09: Samarkand
Samarkand is a city that evokes the romance and history of the Silk Road like no other. This morning, take a visit to the Gur-e-Amir Mausoleum – the final resting place of the mighty 14th-century ruler Timur and his sons and grandsons. Continue to the Shah-i-Zinda complex – the so-called ‘Town of the Dead’ necropolis – with more than 20 beautifully decorated unique buildings. Nearby is the Ulugbek Observatory, built in the 1420s by the Timurid astronomer of the same name. Stop in the Afrasiab Museum, which houses a seventh century fresco of the Sogdian King Varkhouman. Also, be sure to stand in the middle of the iconic Registan Square today with the three medressas – Ulugbek, Sher Dor and Tilla-Kari – towering over you. This is probably the most recognisable sight in Central Asia. Finish your day with a classic Uzbek experience – join a local family for a cooking demonstration on the traditional meal known as plov. This dish is cooked over an open flame in a traditional cauldron and is made up of meat, onions, carrots, rice, raisins, berries and chickpeas.
Day 10: Amankutan Valley/Samarkand
Drive to the nearby Zarafshan Mountain Range this morning (approximately 1 hour each way), admiring the Tahta-Karacha mountain pass and stopping for some photos at the snaking roads. Continue into the Amankutan Valley where you’ll join your leader for a short hike, taking around an hour. Refuel with a home-cooked lunch in a local house nearby, where you can get acquainted with the daily life of your hosts and learn the traditional methods of cooking bread. Afterwards, return to Samarkand for a relaxing afternoon.
Day 11: Tashkent
This morning, you’ll have some more time to check out what you’ve missed in Samarkand, perhaps heading to the Bibi Khanum Mosque or the Siab Bazaar. In the afternoon, head back on the train to Tashkent (approximately 3 hours). Tonight, why not get together with your group leader and travel pals for a celebratory dinner, sharing stories and some beers to celebrate the memories you’ve made in Uzbekistan.
Day 12: Depart Tashkent
With no activities planned for today, you are free to depart at any time of the day. Hotel check-out time is usually around 12 pm, however if you have later onward connections, you will be able to store your luggage at the hotel reception during the day.
|Tashkent||02||Royal Residence Tashkent|
|Nukus||01||Hotel Royal Nukus|
|Bukhara||02||Malika Bukhara Hotel|
|Samarkand||03||Hotel DiliMah Premium Luxury|
|Tashkent||01||Royal Residence Tashkent|
– Meeting and assistance by our representative.
– Welcome with fresh flower garlands.
– 11 Nights accommodation
– Daily Breakfast, Lunch and Dinners.
– Local English-speaking guide
– All transfers, sightseeing, excursions as per the program by private vehicle.
– Entrance Fees as per program
– Transport, Parking, Gasoline & Toll ways.
– All present government taxes.
– International Airfare.
– Tips, gratuities, Portage, laundry, telephone calls, table drinks, camera/ video camera charges, or any other expenses of a personal nature.
– Visa fees, personal insurance.
– Any item not specified under cost includes.
– Accommodation in good hotels.
– Check-in / out time is 12 noon at most of the hotels.
– Extension to other places is also possible with a minimal extra cost.
– Additional nights are available at each place with minimal supplement.
– A visa is required and must be obtained prior to your departure from your Country.
– If quoted hotel is not available, we will provide one of a similar category and standard.
– Small deviations in the tour program are sometimes necessary, depending on weather, road conditions, flight schedules and room availability.
– In case the government changes presently applicable taxes, increase in airlines prices, fuel surcharge our rates will need to be adjusted accordingly.
– Sometimes, there is no relevance between the distance and time of travelling, as it depends upon the condition of the roads and congestion of the traffic.
– While every effort will be made to maintain the itinerary, in view of local strikes etc that are beyond our control all schedule and itineraries are subject to last moment changes.
– Clients must be fully insured, as the company cannot accept liability for loss or damage to client’s property, medical emergencies or any other loss suffered by them whilst on tour.
– In Case of issuing Domestic or International air tickets, SGV is not responsible for any refund if the flight is delayed or cancelled, as it is the responsibility of airline.