About Uzbekistan

Uzbekistan’s Pilgrimage tourism in the focus of Malaysian media
28 December 2022
Uzbekistan’s Pilgrimage tourism in the focus of Malaysian media

A special issue of the Halal Rest & Rehlah (RR) magazine published a series of articles and materials on the tourism potential of Uzbekistan.

In one of the articles on the development of pilgrimage tourism in Uzbekistan, it is noted that this term covers Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism and Islam. For more than 3 millennia Uzbekistan has been a crossroads of religions and civilizations, where, accordingly, a wide variety of cultural heritage sites, namely Buddhist temples, Christian churches, and Jewish synagogues, have been preserved in the territory of the country. Along with this, 80 percent of cultural attractions in Uzbekistan are associated with the religion of Islam. They belong to the periods of Islamic enlightenment, or Renaissance, in the 9th-12th and 14th-16th centuries.

The article also mentions that the Government of Uzbekistan initiated the construction of the Center of Islamic Civilization in Uzbekistan, which will become the center for all relics, exhibits, valuable manuscripts and publications, paintings and Islamic miniatures. The museum will also exhibit other pieces of art such as calligraphy, textiles, ceramics and more.

The unique architecture and material heritage that have survived to this day were also described in the article as a real tourist "magnet" in Uzbekistan. Some of these attractions are located in Samarkand, Bukhara, Khiva and the Ferghana Valley.

Another article introduces readers to the beauty and magnificence of Bukhara and Samarkand cities. In particular, it tells about the possibilities of Umrah + tour packages, as well as the participation of the Uzbek delegation in the 3rd World Islamic Tourism Conference (WITC) in Malaysia. It is reported that the visit became fruitful - the Conference was marked by the signing of a Memorandum of Cooperation between the Malaysian Association of Tour Operators and Travel Agencies (MATTA) and the Uzbek side.

The publication offers pilgrims making Umrah in Saudi Arabia a good opportunity to get acquainted with the legendary cities of Uzbekistan - Bukhara and Samarkand.

The strengthening of cooperation between Uzbekistan and the Islamic Tourism Center of Malaysia is reported in the following material, which is devoted to the prospects for cooperation between the two countries in the field of tourism.

The source informs that the relevant agreements were reached during the recent visit of the Malaysian delegation, which took place on November 1-7, 2022 to participate in the International Ziyorat Tourism Week in several regions of the country.

“Uzbekistan is developing standards of requirements for tourism services and Muslim hospitality. Prayer halls and ablution rooms were organized at international airports, railway stations and hotels. This year, at the global summit "Halal in Travel Awards", dedicated to the restoration and development of the tourism market of the Muslim world in Singapore, the city of Samarkand won the nomination "Best developing Muslim city of the year," the article says.

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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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