EN12MU – Muynak and Classic Uzbekistan – 12 days / 11 nights

Day Tour Description
Route Istanbul – Tashkent – Nukus – Muynak – Nukus – Khiva – Bukhara – Nurata – Samarkand – Tashkent – Istanbul
Day 1 – SAT 

Istanbul – Tashkent

Depart for Tashkent from Istanbul via Turkish Airlines flight: TK370 SAT ISTTAS 1835 0110+1.
Day 2 – SUN 

Tashkent

Arrival at 01h10m and transfer to the hotel.

Accommodation and rest.

Breakfast in hotel. Free lunch.

Today explore Tashkent: the Museum of Decorative and Applied Art. One of the most interesting museums in Tashkent is the Museum of Decorative Arts with an extensive collection of ceramics, carved wood, textiles, carpets, metalwork, and other handicrafts.Khast Imam Ensemble with Barak Khan Madrasa, Kaffal Shashi Mausoleum, Tilla Sheikh Mosque a sacred Koran dating from the seventh century.

Free dinner.

Overnight in the hotel.

Day 3 – MON 

Tashkent – Nukus – Muynak – Nukus

Early check-out, transfer to the airport, departure to Nukus via UzAirways flight HY1001MON TASNCU 0710 0945.

Breakfast in the city.

Visit Savitsky Art Museum.

Drive to Muynak by Jeeps.

Once a bustling fishing community and Uzbekistan’s only port city with tens of thousands of residents, Muynak is now a shadow of its former self, dozens of kilometers from the rapidly receding shoreline of the Aral Sea. Fishing had always been part of the economy of the region, and Muynak became a center of industrial fishing and canning. However, overfishing the shallow sea in the past made it very susceptible to economic collapse as the Aral Sea has dried up.

Muynak’s major “tourist attractions” are the armada of rusting hulks that once made up the proud fishing fleet during the Soviet era, and a one-room museum devoted to Muynak’s heritage as a center of the fishing industry. Poisonous dust storms kicked up by strong winds across the dried and polluted seabed give rise to a multitude of chronic and acute illnesses among the few residents who have chosen to remain, most of them ethnic Karakalpaks, and weather unmoderated by the sea now buffets the town with hotter-than-normal summers and colder-than-normal winters.

Lunch: lunch boxes.

Back to Nukus, check-in in hotel.

Dinner in local restaurant.

Day 4 – TUE 

Nukus – Toprak Kala – Ayaz Kala – Khiva

Breakfast in the hotel.

Drive to Toprak Kala on Jeep.

Toprak Kala is an excavated town dating back to the 1st to 5th cent. AD and is considered as the most important monument on Chorezm from the Kushan time. It’s ground plan is 500m x 300m and it was surrounded by a wall made of bricks, 10 to 15 m high. The King’s Palace in the north western part of the town was built on an elevated base rising about 15 m above the rest of the town. Three monumental towers, 25 m high, still exist. In front of the palace was the temple area with the holy fire. The town was divided by streets into several districts with blocks of dwellings with 150 to 200 rooms. The Kings’s Hall covered an area of 280 squqre meters. The wall paintings and monumental clay sculptures were the works of a school of arts which could develop a particular Chorezmian style under the influence of Graceo-Bactrian art. The rooms of the palace had colourful wall paintings. The fortress is considered as the palace of the shah of Chorezm. In the ruins of Toprak Kala a great number of Kushan and Chorezm coins dating from the 2nd to the 5th cent. and small copper discs with portraits of the rules of Chorezm and written documents on wooden plates or on skins, the most ancient documents in this area, were found.Drive to Ayaz Kala.Ayaz Kala is located on the western side of the Sultan-Uiz-Dagh Mountains. The site consists of three fortresses which were built from the 4th cent. BC to the 7th cent. AD. The fortresses were part of a series of forts located at the edge of the Kizilkum Desert, which provided defence against raids by nomads and the Saca of the Syr-Darya delta.

Transfer to Khiva.

Lunch: lunch boxes.

Dinner in the hotel.

Overnight in the hotel.

Day 5 – WED 

Khiva

Breakfast in the hotel.

Civilization has existed in this oasis area for at least four millennia, and possibly for six. The historic center of Khiva has been preserved in its entirety, and for that reason it is a UNESCO World Heritage site. To enter Khiva is to traverse into medieval times. This walled city dates from the 10th century and is in essence an outdoor historical, architectural and cultural museum. This was the capital for the khans of Khiva, and the major  monuments from the 10th to the 19th centuries are intact. These include the Ichan-Qala gates and wall, as well as the Khuna Ark. It is worth noting that the great 9th-century mathematician al-Khwarizmi (Latinized as Algoritmi) was born in Khiva. He is as famous in the Middle East as Euclid is in the West. It is to Algoritmi that we owe algorithms (the mathematical foundation of internet search) and to some degree algebra, from his book Al-Jebr.

Free lunch.

Dinner in the hotel.

Overnight in the hotel.

Day 6 – THU 

Khiva – Urgench – Bukhara

Breakfast in the hotel.

Transfer to Urgench for the Urgench – Bukhara flight: THU HY1052 UGCBHK 0935 1035.

Arrival and accommodation in the hotel.

Visit Bukhara: Lyabi-Khauz Ensemble, including Nadir-Divan-Beghi Madrasah, Kukeldash Madrasah and Nadir-Divan-Beghi khanaka; Magok-Attor Mosque; Trade Dome Toki-Sarafon and Toki-Tilpak Furushon; Chor Minor.

Dinner in local restaurant.

Overnight in the hotel.

Day 7 – FRI  Bukhara Breakfast in the hotel.

Visit Bukhara: Poi-Kalian Ensemble with Kalon Minaret, Kalon Mosque and Miri-Arab madrasah; Trade Dome Toki-Zargaron; Ulugbek Madrasah and Abdulaziz Khan Madrasah, the Dome of Abdulla Khan.

Dinner in a local restaurant.

Overnight in the hotel.

Day 8 – SAT 

Bukhara

Breakfast in the hotel.

Visits’ continuation: the Ark Citadel, Bolo-Khaouz Mosque, Ismail Samani Mausoleum, Chashma-Ayub Mausoleum, Job source, covered bazaar.

Free lunch.

Take a short drive outside Bukhara to the Sitorai Makhi Khosa, popularly known as the Emir’s Summer Palace. Explore the grounds, living quarters, and three separate museums within the grounds: the Museum of Applied Arts, Museum of National Costume, and Museum of Needlework.

Return to Bukhara, and stroll through the local market and the back alleys of the city.

Dinner in a local restaurant.

Overnight in the hotel.

Day 9 – SUN 

Bukhara – Nurata – Samarkand

Breakfast in the hotel.

Embark on a drive to Samarkand through Nurata.

Visit little village near to Nurata, surrounded by green hills, having tea with villagers.

Depart to Samarkand. Arrival and accommodation to hotel.

Dinner in a local restaurant.

Overnight in the hotel.

Day 10 – MON 

Samarkand

Breakfast in the hotel.

Visit Samarkand: Gur Amir Mausoleum, the beautifully tiled resting place of Tamerlane and his sons; Registan Square.

Free lunch.

In the afternoon we visit Bibi Khanum Mosque and market Siab.

Dinner in a local restaurant.

Overnight in the hotel.

Day 11 – TUE 

Samarkand – Tashkent

Breakfast in the hotel.Visits’ continuation: the Shakhi Zinda Necropolis where it is believed that the cousin of the Prophet Mohammed, Qusam ibn Abbas, is entombed. Ulughbeg Observatory, named for one of the world’s greatest astronomers.Free lunch.Visit silk carpets factory and silk paper factory.

Dinner in a local restaurant.

Transfer to the Railway station and road to Tashkent via express train Afrosiab (Train 761: Samarkand – Tashkent, 17:00 – 19:10 (Direct, non-stop, 02h10m)).

Arrival and accommodation in the hotel.

Dinner in the hotel.

Overnight in the hotel.

Day 12 – WED 

Tashkent – Istanbul

Early breakfast (coffee and croissants).

Transfer to the airport for morning flight from Tashkent to Istanbul via Turkish Airlines flight: TK369 WED TASIST 0810 1130.

 

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