About Uzbekistan

The first direct charter flight from Israel to Uzbekistan’s Samarkand takes place today
03 May 2023
The first direct charter flight from Israel to Uzbekistan’s Samarkand takes place today

The first charter flight ever between Uzbekistan and Israel was launched today. The charter flight on the Tel Aviv-Samarkand route is the first one in the history of air communication between Uzbekistan and Israel.

The flight is operated by Qanot Sharq, a private airline. The liner with 150 passengers on board departed at 10:10 am in Tel Aviv time (12.10 in Tashkent) and will arrive in Samarkand at 17:00 local time today, on 3 May 2023.

Qanot Sharq private airline company started operating in the market back in 1998. Since the beginning of its history, the airline has been progressively developing and has carried out hundreds of successful air cargo and passenger flights so far.

Today, the Qanot Sharq Airline is the owner of four aircraft that operate not only domestic but also international flights.

The official opening ceremony of the first charter flight between Uzbekistan and Israel was attended by the Ambassador of Uzbekistan to Israel Feruza Mahmudova, and representatives of Israeli officials, the country's public and business circles.

As a part of the tourism reforms being implemented in the country in recent years, Uzbekistan has introduced a visa-free regime for Israeli citizens for up to 30 days since February 2018. As a result of easing the visa procedures to travel to Uzbekistan, about 12 thousand Israeli tourists visited our country last year.

We would like to remind you that a total of 93 countries can travel to Uzbekistan visa-free today, while over 50 countries can visit Uzbekistan with an electronic visa / e-visa. The countries that are able to visit Uzbekistan without obtaining a visa cover all EU member states and UK citizens. The current relaxation of travel to Uzbekistan has brought significant results to the tourist flow to Uzbekistan in recent years, with visitor numbers peaking at 6.7 million in 2019, right before the outbreak of the pandemic. In 2023 our country expects to outgrow the pre-pandemic numbers of international tourists visiting Uzbekistan, reaching approximately 7 million visitors.

Uzbekistan’s visa-free regime and the launch of new international flight routes have indeed been working effectively to attract more tourists to visit Uzbekistan’s travel spots, such as Samarkand, Bukhara, Shakhrisabz, Khiva and of course the capital of Uzbekistan, modern Tashkent. 

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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
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