The Legacy Routes – Uzbekistan
A small group tour led by Vesna Petkovic
Friday 15th to Tuesday 26th September, 2017
You will be accompanied by Vesna Petkovic. Vesna is a founder and the leader of Pro Art & Co, a non-profit company, and an educator, multidisciplinary expert, in the fields of culture, heritage and environment, working mainly in Europe and Central Asia. Vesna is creating and delivering informal educational projects, gives talks, presentations and organising visits to heritage sites around Europe and the Silk Road. She travelled throughout Uzbekistan and she is familiar with the region’s history. Her recent project was the Legacy of the Silk Road, which brought Indus Experience and Pro Art together in this mind stimulating and inspiring journey.
London • Tashkent • Ferghana • Khiva • Bukhara • Samarkand • Tashkent • London
(Meals: B-Breakfast, L-Lunch, D-Dinner)
Departure from London or home country for Tashkent. 09.35 (pm)
Arrive Tashkent Islam Karimov International Airport – HY202 – 08.15 (am) meeting, assistance and transfer to Hotel Wyndham or similar - Lunch at hotel restaurant. After lunch, we will take the orientation tour of Tashkent, passing through some important parts of the city with Buddhist, Christian and Islamic traditions. Welcome dinner at a traditional Uzbek restaurant. (L,D)
Tashkent – Kokand-Margilan- Ferghana - We will leave Tashkent by train for Margilan at 08:05 (am) to arrive at 13:05 (pm). On arrival, we proceed to Margilan, a small town of craftsmen, to Ishan Hoja madrassah, a UNESCO World Heritage site, a specially created site for the Atlas Bairam Silk Festival, where the fair of applied arts of Uzbekistan will be presented. We will see about 120 leading master craftsmen of traditional textile and clothing design, artisans, art scientists, art specialists in the field of traditional crafts, who take part in the festival. The program of the event includes folk festivities, performances of folklore musical groups, performances of darvoz rope walkers, kurash competitions - a kind of wrestling, plov (traditional rice and lamb dish free to taste) competition and puppet show (old-style story telling).
We shall visit the silk weaving masters from the famous Yadgorlik Silk Factory –demonstrating the whole process of silk-making using traditional methods, from cocoon to the hand looms, from weaving to dying, turning beautiful patterns of khan-atlas, shokhi and bekasam silk designs. We will also see block printing and carpet weaving. Lunch at the madrassah festival site. We will then proceed to Ferghana. On arrival transfer to Hotel Asia Ferghana. (B,L,D)
Ferghana –Tashkent. We will start our Ferghana valley tour with a visit of Khodoyar Khan’s fort, residence of the last Khan of the once-powerful Khanate that ruled as far as Yarkand. We will then depart for Rishton to visit the workshop house of the master potter Rustam Usmanov. We shall have lunch at his camp and visit his workshop and the small pottery museum. After lunch we will drive back to Tashkent. Overnight at Wyndham Hotel. (B,L,D)
Tashkent/Urgench – HY1057 – 18.40/20.20 (pm) - Urgench/Khiva – 32 km We will spend the day visiting the Old City – Hast Imam Complex – Barak Khana seminary – seat of Mufti of Tashkent, Tilla Shaikh archives to see some rare Islamic manuscripts and the prize of the collection, the rare copy of the Uthman Koran (7th c.) written on deer skin by the third Caliph of Islam. Later, we will proceed to the busy Chorsu Bazaar. We will then walk to Kukeldesh Madrassah, once overlooking the caravan road and four rivulets that gave name to the place ‘Chorsu’. We will then proceed to Independence square – the Mustaqlik Square. After lunch at a local restaurant, we will visit the History Museum. After the visits, we will transfer to the airport for a flight to Urgench – on arrival we shall depart for Khiva. Arrival and transfer to Hotel Asia - Dinner and overnight (B,L,D)
Khiva- Khorezm – full day walking tour of Khiva –the city-museum famous for its scholars and architecture and the seat of the famous Mamun academy. We will start the visit with an introduction to Ichan Kala, Kalta Minor, Kunya Arg, Madrassah Rakhimkhon, attend workshops for development of local handicrafts, then proceed to Pakhlavan Makhmud’s mausoleum to see the wonderful tile work, before visiting the Islam Khodja minaret and museum. We’ll then have lunch at the local madrassah restaurant, before continuing our walking tour taking in the Friday (Djuma) Mosque, Madrassah Alikuli Khan, and Tashauli harem quarters of the last Khan of Khiva. We expect we will have time for exploring the walled city, then walk back to the hotel for dinner and stay overnight. (B,L,D)
Khiva/Bukhara – 460 km. In the morning, we will depart for Bukhara via the Kyzilkum desert. En route, we will make short stops at the sight of Amur Darya (ancient, gold, Oxus river) and have a picnic lunch. On arrival to Bukhara, we will transfer to Hotel Zargaron Plaza, which is the best hotel in town. We will then take a short drive to Lyabikhauz (by the pond), take some short walks around, then return to the hotel for dinner, and stay overnight. (B,L,D)
Full day sightseeing tour of Bukhara We will start our tour of Bukhara, the sacred city, with a busy morning: Lyabikhauz, madrassah Nadirkhon Devanbegi, walk through to smaller cupola, Mohgaki Attari mosque, Tipak Frushan (the hat sellers’ street), Tim Abdullah, madrassahs Azizi Khan and Ulugbek. Walk through Taqi Zargaron to Poi-Kalon complex and the famous Kalon minaret and Mosque – the oldest mosque which was devastated during the Mongol invasion in 1225 AD and is a wonderful example of brick architecture of 9th - 10th century, and to see the active Miri Arab Madrassa. After lunch at a local restaurant, we will continue our tour. Visit Arg Fortress – the home and administrative quarters of the emirs of Bukhara. From there we will visit the infamous Zindan (prison) where Stoddart and Connolly were interned before being beheaded in front of the fort. Visit old Balakhauz mosque, Ismail Samanid mausoleum and Chasma Ayub (Job’s spring) Dinner will be at the house of Sufi Miniaturist Devlat – see his works and join his family for the dinner – we will walk through the oldest part of the Jewish quarters of Bukhara – before retiring back to the hotel and staying overnight. (B,L,D)
Bukhara/Samarkand – Train – 15.21/16.55 (pm). Morning excursion to Sitora-i-Mokhikhosa – the summer residence of the last emir of Bukhara, followed by a visit to the house workshop of master potter Alisher. Princess Diana and Prince Charles had also visited his workshop. After lunch at his workshop we will make a short visit of the Sufi Shrine of Abudul Khaliq Gijduvani. We will then return to Bukhara and proceed to Kazan, the railway station outside Bukhara, to see the beautiful building of the old railway station built during the Czarist period since the emir objected to a train station within Bukhara, considering its sacred nature. He did not allow the construction, as he was advised by Bukhara’s clergy that a steam engine is Satan’s Wagon!! We will then take the fast train to Samarkand and on arrival transfer to Hotel Grand Samarkand, for dinner and stay overnight. (B,L,D)
Full day sightseeing tour – we shall start our visit at the famous Gur Emir mausoleum of Tamerlane, continue to Registan Square to see the three beautiful madrassahs – Shir Dor, Tilla Kari and Ulugbek’s. A short walk to Bibi Khanum’s mosque, the favorite wife of Tamerlane, who built a massive structure to commemorate his victories. We will then proceed to the famous Silk Road bazaar of Siyob – this is an opportunity for interesting interactions with local folks. After lunch at a local Uzbek house belonging to a minature artist, we will visit Shah-i- Zinda necropolis, the royal cemetery – the best example of Central Asian tile and mosaic work. We will then visit the Afrosiab Museum (artefacts from the Sogdian and ancient civilizations) – see the wall scraping from nearby site and beautiful murals and to visit the world’s famous Ulugbek’s Observatory. Dinner at a local restaurant – stay overnight (B,L,D)
We will make excursion to Shahrisabz, the birthplace of Tamerlane, then visit Ak Saray palace ruins, Dorus Tilavat seminary, Kok Gumbaz mosque, Dorus Saidat, Tamerlane’s crypt and the Friday Mosque. We will take lunch at a local house and afterwards return to Samarkand with some free time to explore the city, before dinner at a local restaurant and overnight stay. (B,L,D)
Samarkand/Tashkent – 330 km Tashkent/London – HY201 – 16.20 (pm) Arrival to London 08.00 (pm). Morning departure for Tashkent by road with short stops to see the melon market as we drive through the green fields. On arrival, direct transfer to Tashkent airport – we will proceed to Jum Airport restaurant for lunch. Later transfer to your departure lounge Assistance on departure. (B,L)
There will be a pre and post tour union of the group, dates will be advised to the participants a month before departure.
- How to Book this Tour
- Travel Insurance
International and domestic flights
Uzbekistan Visa fee
- All accommodation arrangements with private facilities.
- Meal Plan: All Meals
Transfers & sightseeing by best air-conditioned coach (cars for Farghana/Tashket and Samarkand/Tashkent leg)
Entrance fee at museums and sites
Portages at airports and hotels
Train fare Tashkent/Ferghana.
Services of an accompanied experienced English speaking Guide
- Services of Vesna Petkovic - Trip Scholar
- Mineral water when on board the coach.
Full ATOL & ABTA bonding.
Cost does not include:
Travel Insurance. You can obtain a comprehensive travel insurance from Travel & General click here
Any expense of a personal nature
- Tips and Gratuities
- To book this tour , please compete the booking form, sign and e-mail it to us. A non-refundable deposit of £500.00 per person is needed at the time of booking. Balance payments will be due 8 weeks before departure. You can make the deposit payment by debit card or electronic transfers to our bank. Credit card payment will be charge at 2% extra. Our Bank details are on the booking form. Bookings are confirmed on first come first served basis. When the tour is full we will take about 5 additional names on the waiting list to replace their booking with any cancellations etc.
- If you wish to join the tour and fly from any country other than United Kingdom please contact us for land only arrangements.
It is essential to have adequate insurance in place before your departure. This should be appropriate for your age, health and destination you are visiting.
- It includes comprehensive medical and repatriation cover.
- It provides cover for your whole trip (whether one day or over a year).
- It covers you for all activities.
- Disclose pre-existing medical conditions.
- Take your policy number and the 24-hour emergency contact numbers with you.
- If you are making multiple trips we recommend that you take a yearly travel insurance policy.
If you have any question about your cover, please check with your insurer.
For a comprehensive travel insurance quote - please click here