About Uzbekistan

Uzbek costume
07 July 2017
Uzbek costume

raditional costume in Central Asia remains an important component of cultural, ethnic and religious identity, although younger people ape western fashions.

The most striking piece of male attire is the long, striped, wrap-around cloak called  chapanor khalat in Russian, tied around the waist by a turma sash. Massi slippers are worn over kavish soft boots so that only the overshoes need be taken off when entering a mosque or private house. The characteristic black-and-white Uzbek doppe/doppillar skullcaps (tubyeiteka in Russian), embroidered with stylized floral motifs, are worn almost universally to provide a religious as well as ethnic marker, while multi-coloured 'carpet' Tajik scullcaps are worn widely in Samarkand and Shakhrisabz. Both styles originally served as support for the traditional 40 folds of a white or blue chalma turban, but are worn today in their own right. In winter, skullcaps are generally swapped for warmer karakul fleeced tilpaks. In Khorezm, wild and woolly Turkomen dreadlock chormas bristle with past infamy, while white, felt Kyrgyz kalpaks speckle the fringes of the Ferghana Valley. Muslim headgear is universally rimless to avoid impeding daily prayer. Belts for gala dresses were normally very smart, made of velvet or embroidered, with silver figured metal plates and buckles. Everyday shirts are tied with long sashes.

Traditional Uzbek women’s suit consists of plain khan-atlas tunic-dress and wide trousers. Holiday garments were made of satin fabric richly embroidered with golden thread. Women’s headdress consists of three Chapanelements: a skull-cap, kerchief and turban. An essential part of traditional holiday garments of Uzbek women are gold and silver jewellery: earrings, bracelets, necklaces. Surkhandarya women most of all prefer the colors of red nuance as a symbol of well-being. The embroidery pattern was chosen not by chance, it always had magic or practical function. One could judge about the owner’s social status by the patterns, though sometimes they bear other meanings. For instance, repeating geometrical pattern on the braiding was a something like an amulet Clothing of black or dark blue colors was not popular in any region of Uzbekistan due to a superstition. Sogdian patterns have preserved the traces of Zoroastrian influence. The colors in this region were chosen on the basis of the position in society. For example, prevailing blue and violet nuances in a woman’s dress showed her husband’s pride of place, while greenish motifs were frequently used by peasants and craftsmen. Women's dress centres around the mass-produced, but vibrant, tie-dyed ikat silks of the Ferghana Valley where time-honoured, handmade silks are also being revived. Kuljak knee-length dresses are worn either alone or with ishton trousers, while violently embroidered skullcaps are reserved for unmarried girls. Married women generally wear coloured headscarves. Only in rural areas will you see older women wearing the traditional chetvan robe with arms tied behind the back. In parts of the Ferghana Valley Iranian-style chador dresses and veils (paranja) are returning with the rising Islamic tide.

The footwear consisted of baskhi (ichigi – nice heelless step-in boots with a soft sole), and high boots made of rough leather or rubber. It was very handy and warm footwear which is quite popular even today.

Women and Men’s national headwear. Tubeteikas (Skull-caps) - Headdress is one of the main elements in the traditional Uzbek clothing. The national headwear in many countries of Central Asia, including Uzbekistan is a tubeteika (skull-cap). Tubeteika is derived from the Turkic word “tube'”, which means “top, peak”. Tubeteika is worn by everybody: men, women, and children. Only elder women do not wear tubeteikas.

Today it is uncommon to meet a man in the tubeteika in large cities, mainly it is an important element of holiday garments at family parties and religious celebrations. The common form of the Uzbek tubeteika is tetrahedral and slightly conical. Traditional men’s tubeteika is black and embroidered with a inwrought white pattern in a form of four “paprikas” and 16 miniature arches. An everyday tubeteika, “kalampir”, is one of the simplest and widely used cap, it’s importance must not be underestimated. This tubeteika is an essential attribute for some events even in the environment of a country-wide influence of the European culture. There are smart tubeteikas enriched with bright and colorful embroideries and patterns for special festival occasions.

In traditionally nomadic areas, wealth was worn in the saddle and on the hoof and Kazakh, Karakalpak and Turkomen carpets, saddlery, koshma felts, coral amulets and women's silver jewellery are particularly fine. Embroidery is also a long established art in Central Asia; witness the male-dominated profession of Bukharan gold embroidery or local variations of suzane embroidered designs. The most popular form of suzane, derived from the Persian word for needle, are beautiful wall hangings.

Uzbek dance

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Makhalla (Uzbek quarter)

Makhalla (Uzbek quarter) is a keeper of Uzbek traditions. It is an entire system of relations between inhabitants of one quarter, which has existed in Uzbekistan over centuries and which has influenced on the development of Uzbek traditions and life style. In some way, it is the form of community, united on a small area.

07 July 2017
Uzbek wedding

Nikokh-Tui, wedding, is the most solemn and large Uzbek ceremony. Wedding ceremony traditionally is of great importance in the life of Uzbeks and celebrating as an important event. 

07 July 2017
Khatna-kilish (circumcision party)

Khatna-kilish is another ancient Uzbek rite, consecrated by Islam (sunnat tuyi). This rite is solemnized in relation to boys at the age of 3, 5, 7, 9, years old and in certain cases at the age of 11-12 years old. Preparations for this rite begin since the birth of a boy: members of the family sew quilts, covers, garments.

07 July 2017
Did you know?

Uzbekistan is one of only two countries in the world to be ‘double landlocked’ (landlocked and totally surrounded by other landlocked countries). Liechtenstein is double landlocked by 2 countries whilst Uzbekistan is surrounded by 5!

Did you know that Uzbekistan lies in the very heart of Eurasia, the coordinates for Uzbekistan are 41.0000° N, 69.0000°

Uzbekistan is home to the Muruntan gold mine, one of the largest open pit gold mines in the world! The country has 4th largest reserves of gold in the world after South Africa, USA and Russia

Uzbekistan is the world capital of melons. They have in excess of 150 different varieties, which form a staple part of the local diet, served fresh in the summer and eaten dried through the winter.

It is Uzbek tradition that the most respected guest be seated farthest from the house’s entrance.

Tashkent’s metro features chandeliers, marble pillars and ceilings, granite, and engraved metal. It has been called one of the most beautiful train stations in the world.

The Uzbek master chef is able to cook in just one caldron enough plov to serve a thousand men.

When you are a host to someone, it is your duty to fill their cups with for the whole time they are with you.  What you must not do, however, is to fill their cup more than half-full.  If you do that as a mistake, say it is a mistake immediately.  Doing it means you want them to leave.  Wow!  Amazing, right?

To Uzbeks, respect means a whole lot.  For this reason they love it if, even as foreigners, you endeavour to add the respectful suffix opa after a woman's name; and aka after a man's.  Example: Linda-opa and David-aka.  You could also use hon and jon respectively.

Having been an historic crossroads for centuries as part of various ancient empires, Uzbekistan’s food is very eclectic. It has its roots in Iranian, Arab, Indian, Russian and Chinese cuisine.

Though identified with the Persia, the Zoroastrism probably originated in Bactria or Sogdiana. Many distinguished scholars share an opinion that Zoroastrianism had originated in the ancient Khorezm. Indeed, today in the world there were found 63 Zoroastrian monuments, including those in Iran, India, Afghanistan and Pakistan. Thirty-eight of them are in Uzbekistan, whereas 17 of these monuments are located in Khorezm.

One of Islam's most sacred relics - the world's oldest Koran that was compiled in Medina by Othman, the third caliph or Muslim leader, is kept in Tashkent. It was completed in the year 651, only 19 years after Muhammad's death. 

Tashkent is the only megapolis in the world where public transport is totally comprised of Mercedes buses. And due to low urban air polution it is one of the few cities where one can still see the stars in the sky.

You would be surprised to know that modern TV was born in Tashkent. No joke! The picture of moving objects was transmitted by radio first time in the world in Tashkent on 26 of July 1928 by inventors B.P. Grabovsky and I.F. Belansky.

Uzbekistan is the only country in the world all of whose neighbours have their names ending in STAN. This is also the only country in Central Asia that borders all of the countries of this region

Uzbeks are the third populous Turkik ethnicity in the world after Turks and Azeris (leaving both in Azerbaijan and Iran)

Did you know that there was silk money in Khiva? Super interesting right? Of course, but the best part of having silk money was that it could be sewn into your clothing.

Famous Islamic physician Ibn Sina (Avicenna in the Latin world) who was born near Bukhara was the one of the first people to advocate using women’s hair as suture material – about 1400 years ago.

Uzbekistan has a long and bloody history. The most notorious leader of Uzbekistan was Timur (or Tamerlane) who claimed descent from Genghis Khan. His military campaigns have been credited for wiping out some 5% of the world’s population at the time.

If you have thought that some of the Islamic architecture in Uzbekistan resembles that from Northern India, then that is because Timur’s great great great Grandson, Babur Beg, was the founder of the Moghul Empire that ruled much of India for almost four centuries! Babur’s great great Grandson was Shah Jahan, who built the Taj Mahal.

Exchange rates
100 RUR
14395.59 UZS
100 USD
814635.14 UZS
100 EUR
998986.55 UZS
100 GBP
1134705.33 UZS
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