9 Reasons to Travel to Uzbekistan
Uzbekistan is an intriguing central Asian country that became independent with the break-up of the Soviet Union in 1991. Its beautiful architecture and natural landscapes are responsible for making this country one of the trendiest tourist destinations at the present time.
Since its independence, major health reforms have been undertaken to reinforce Uzbekistan’s healthcare system. If you are planning for a unique central Asia travel experience, we highly recommend you consider this fascinating country. Do not forget to get travel insurance coverage in Uzbekistan because healthcare in Uzbekistan can be difficult to access by tourists because of the language and specific local hospitals rules.
But why visit Uzbekistan? Here they go a few good reasons:
1. Experience the Magic of Samarkand
Samarkand is without doubt one of the signature cities in Uzbekistan. Its rich history evokes tales from the “Thousand and one nights” literature. There was a time in which Samarkand was one of the greatest cities in Asia as an important path on the Silk Road which stretched from the Mediterranean to China. Turks, Mongols, Persian and Russian remnants make Samarkand’s culture a fascinating mix. Some of Samarkand’s majestic attractions really worth to visit are the Registan, Bibi-Khanym mosque and Gur-e-Amir.
2. Visit Tashkent, its Modern – Soviet Style Capital
Tashkent is the capital and largest city of Uzbekistan. Apart from this, Tashkent was also one of the biggest Soviet settlements in Asia; no wonder then, that the city still has a Russian feel; combining classic Soviet architecture and austere buildings with blue-tiled Persian style facades. Not just that, Tashkent is also a lively urban city with lots of things going on. One of the most characteristic things of this city is its subway, finely ornamented; each station representing a completely different scene and style.
3. Travel the Ancient Silk Road
Uzbekistan is automatically associated with the Silk Road; belonging to this country are 3 of the most iconic Silk Road transit cities: Samarkand, Khiva and Bukhara. Uzbekistan was, in the medieval era, one of the main countries traversed by the ancient caravans on the way to China. The historic routes are maintained in today’s Uzbekistan and still attract the curiosity of tourists. Indeed, the Silk Road legacy continues to have a strong influence on tourism in the region.
4. Explore the Nuratau Montains
Nuratau Montains attract many tourists thanks to their green landscapes, beautiful Aydar lake and natural rock monuments. In Nuratau reserve you’ll find unique flora and wildlife species including the local Severtsov sheep. It’s also a great place for birdwatching and silk worm raising. There are beautiful villages spread around the mountains such us Sentyab, Hayat, Mosrum or Asraf; really worth a visit. The Petroglyph site of Sarmysh, not far from Nuratau montains is an excellent touring choice, too.
5. Ride a Camel Across the Kyzylkum Desert
In contrast to the green montains, Uzbekistan also offers 3 amazing deserts: Kyzylkum (the largets and best known), Aralkum and Ustyurt. Where there is a desert, there are always camels around; so one of the typical activities in these places is to have a camel ride and enjoy spectacular orange sunsets reflecting on the sandy dessert’s dunes. During the treks, tourists will revive many of the routes made by ancient caravans.
6. Enjoy a Night in a Yurt Camp
Some desert areas are popular with tourists because of their yurt camps. The yurts are Mongolian style round tents beautifully decorated with traditional ornaments and hand-made carpets. A night in a yurt camp could be a fantastic way to relax next to a campfire and watch unbelievable starry skies, while enjoying the typical Uzbek foods and local ancient music (akyns).
7. Walk around Bukhara, Central Asia Holiest City
With its buildings dating centuries back, Bukhara’s streets are full of history and radiate the ancient Samanids’ culture. Numerous medressas and minarets dot the city which was considered an important intellectual centre of the Islamic world in the past. Bukhara also hosts a sovereign fortress and vestiges of an old Persian market complex. A few famous mausoleums and mosques and its historical city centre make of Bukhara an interesting spot to visit.
8. Sightsee the Aral Sea
The Aral Sea, placed in between Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan, was once the fourth largest lake in the world, but it’s been shrinking since 1960; after the feeding rivers were diverted. The dry side of the Aral Sea is nowadays a vast desolate land; with sunken ships, ruins and abandoned fishermen cottages. However, the Aral Sea is still one of the main attractions in Uzbekistan.
9. Delight Yourself in the Uzbek Cuisine
Uzbek signature dish is Palov; a delicious course made of rice, meat, onions, carrots and certain berries. Do not forget to have a try of Shurpa either; the traditional Uzbek soup. Breads and Noodles are typical in the culinary Turkic cuisines as it is the Uzbek one; and mutton is probably the most popular meat type. In terms of drinks, Samarkand wines and vodka are worth experiencing too.
Travel Insurance Uzbekistan
Uzbekistan has recently facilitated its visa application process in order to foster tourism. Wondering how to get your visa for Uzbekistan? Please take a look at this website to get a better understanding on how to apply for a visa to Uzbekistan.
As mention before, it’s also important to get a medical cover in Uzbekistan before travelling. If something happened during your trip you’ll have easy access to local hospitals and health treatment as well as full coverage against other contingencies such as flight delays or luggage loss. If you’d like to have further information, do not hesitate in requesting a travel quote.