About Uzbekistan

07 July 2017

The traditional community unit in Uzbekistan is known as the mahalla — a neighborhood from several to several dozen households. The Uzbek mahalla has a long history and is the focal point for family and religious holidays. As a rule, each community has its own small mosque, teahouse, and bazaar. In the Soviet period, mosques were converted into libraries or local administrative units. After Independence the mahalla was institutionalized but lost most of its democratic power as an independent, self-governing body. Now it performs local administrative functions on behalf of the government as a territorial association of families fostering cooperation and mutual assistance.

Neighbors are the second-most important people for Uzbeks after their family. Traditionally, you spend all your life in the same community, growing up with the same people and sharing with them your food, joys, and sorrows. Such communal organization implies establishment of close relations with all the neighbors, regularly reinforced by reciprocal visits, exchanges of gifts on certain occasions, and communal charity work known as hashar.

This flexible and resilient communal network requires compliance with the rules established in the neighborhood, ensured by families who voluntarily give up certain rights to privacy in exchange for communal support. If you wear the same clothes as everyone else, drive the same kind of car, participate in all the traditional events, respect your neighbors, obey your parents, and don’t mix with people considered strange, you can be sure that when you need to borrow some rice, or a ladder, or when you need someone to look after your son while you are at work, your neighbors will be there to help you.

This collectivist lifestyle strongly contrasts with the individualism of the more socially mobile and self-sufficient urban Russians. In the larger cities, especially in new residential areas with apartment blocks, the traditional mahalla structure has merged with the Soviet-style administration and a certain cultural compromise has been reached. The social openness of the Uzbeks has also greatly influenced the local Russians, who often find it difficult to adapt to the more cold and reserved attitudes between neighbors when they move to Russia proper.

More news about Uzbekistan
Samarkand, Bukhara and Khiva. What is more interesting?

What city you you should visit if you travel to Uzbekistan only for a short period of time. Samarkand, Bukhara and Khiva: which one is more interesting to take a tour? Check our detailed report and make your own choice

13 December 2017
Tashkent metro - beautiful and impressing

A comprehensive guide to Tashkent Metro. History and photos of every station. Take a photo tour to Tashkent metro

05 December 2017
Cooperation proposal

Looking for the reliable travel partner in Uzbekistan? Why not approach our company that has over 15 years on the market, have a great expertise in organizing both group and individual tours and we are pretty much sure we can beat any prices that you already have.

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.

Uzbekistan was once a rum producig country. There is still a real arboretum in Denau (city near Termez on the border with Afghanistan), grown from a selection station that studied the prospects of plant growing in the unusual for the Soviet Union subtropical climate of Surkhandarya region: only here in the whole of the USSR sugar cane was grown and even rum was produced!

Uzbekistan has been ranked one of the safest countries in the world, according to a new global poll. The annual Gallup Global Law and Order asked if people felt safe walking at night and whether they had been victims of crime. The survey placed Uzbekistan 5th out of 135 countries, while the UK was 21st and the US 35th. Top five safest countries:

  • Singapore
  • Norway
  • Iceland
  • Finland
  • Uzbekistan
Exchange rates
100 RUR
14449.76 UZS
100 USD
1262518.91 UZS
100 EUR
1359374.21 UZS
100 GBP
1594055.66 UZS
Weather in cities