Sherdor Madrassah facade with blue, yellow and green tiles, wall with tall arches and windows
A Crossroads of Cultures

Uzbekistan Vacations

Historical Gem

Uzbekistan formed a crossroads along the Silk Road that brought together people from across Asia. A number of ancient monuments remain intact in the medieval city of Bukhara, which is believed to be over 2000 years old. Samarkand, with its 14th-century Bibi-Khanym mosque complex and spectacular mausoleums, has a mystical charm, while the capital city, Tashkent, has modern architecture, vast monuments, and sparse Soviet-era buildings. Khiva is home to the fortress town Ichan-Kala and sites that speak of its importance as a trading post on the Silk Road.

The country's diverse landscape of deserts, forests, waterfalls, and mountains attracts outdoor adventurers. The Tian Shan mountain range draws climbers and hikers from all over the world. Its ski resorts are packed in the winter, and the same trails are used for walking and horse riding in summer. The Aral Sea's dried-out bed and rusted ships make it a unique attraction even as efforts are on to restore its sea ecosystem.

At a Glance
CurrencyUzbekistani Som (UZS)
Places To Go

Handcrafted Journeys to our Most Popular Places in Uzbekistan.

Sunset over the famous Kalyan Poi Kalon Minaret, Poi Kalan or Po-i-Kalyan and Mir Arab Madrasah in the center of the old town of Bukhara
Samarkand Registan Square with Sher-Dor, Ulugh Beg and Tilya-Kori Madrasahs under colorful moody sunset twilight cloudscape
Aerial view of the Chorsu market in Tashkent, Uzbekistan
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Uzbekistan: Site of Ancient Silk Road

From sandy deserts, oases, and the snowcapped Tian Shan range to wholesome cuisine, ornate architecture, and massive bazaars, Uzbekistan is a gem in Central Asia.

Majestic ancient historic city walls of the old town of Khiva under beautiful colorful sunset twilight. Ancient City Walls Khiva, Itchan Kala, Khiva - Chiva - Хива, Xorazm Region, Uzbekistan

The Culture

Uzbek is the majority language of Uzbekistan. Tajik is the minority language. Russian is widely spoken and understood. Islam is the predominant religion, with most Uzbeks being Sunni Muslims.

Prior to Soviet rule in the country, gender roles were strictly defined, with males expected to work outside the home and women managing the household and children. Women also supplemented the household income by weaving, spinning, and embroidering. During Soviet rule, men and women both enjoyed the right to education and work. Present-day Uzbekistan is male-dominated, but women occupy a significant portion of the workforce.

Arranged marriages are the norm, especially in rural areas. Many generations live under the same roof. Nuclear families are more common in urban areas.

Modern Uzbek literature is rich in folklore, constituting heroes fighting against enslavers. Literature flourished under the epoch of Amir Timur, and was marked by secular works. Alisher Navoi is the most representative figure of Uzbek literature. He is the founder of the Uzbek language and author of the world-famous works Chordevon and Khamsa.

Uzbekistan has a rich cultural heritage of arts and crafts, including engraving, carpet making, jewelry making, embroidery, silk spinning, ceramics, and more. Each region has its own specialty, such as gold embroidery in Bukhara and skullcaps and knives in Chust. In Tashkent, wood carvings, leather clothes, and tyubiteyka hats, are popular souvenirs. Samarkand is known for its silk carpets while Bukhara's specialties include ceramics, handmade bird scissors, wood carvings, and decorative embroidered textiles.

As most Uzbeks are Muslims, festivals associated with the religion are celebrated across the country. The Zoroastrian holiday of Navrus is also observed. Uzbeks celebrate New Year on January 1 by decorating a New Year tree and exchanging gifts. Other secular festivals include Independence Day on September 1 and Victory Day on May 9. 

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