The architecture of the Tashkent Metro is one of the most beautiful in the world, and it is a traditional destination for tourists and guests...
For a thousand years, the Silk Route, the greatest land based trading highway the world has seen, wound its way from China, through Central Asia to Europe. Today, it is the independent states of Uzbekistan & Kyrgyzstan that contains some of the most interesting sites and this trip is designed to visit the great cities that survive from this legendary era. Discover the highlights of Uzbekistan & Kyrgyzstan on this 18-days tour. Starting in Tashkent we then travel to Urgench, Khiva, Bukhara & Samarkand, we will proceed then to Bishkek and drive to Issyk Kul Lake, surrounded by the celestial mountains.
Highlights include the walled city of Khiva, where we discover a maze of twisted alleyways, medieval mosques and tombs. Following the old caravan route south, we see the fine Islamic architecture of Bukhara and Samarkand. Along the way we will experience the nomadic lifestyle and stay in a traditional felt yurt. You wuill visit the Issyk Kul Lake, that is the second largest alpine lake in the world (1608 m. above sea level). The lake is called "the pearl of Central Asia". You will meet a local eagle-hunter and a family that will show you the way of how national woolen felt carpets are produced. You even can create your own carpet together with them. You will be endlessly awed by the stunning landscapes of the “Switzerland of Central Asia” and will see the breathtaking views of the high mountains, picturesque passes, and nomadic way of life that make Kyrgyzstan an irresistible travel destination.
- Tashkent - Wander through Tashkent's bazaar for a wonderful insight into daily life and mingle with the locals in the lively Chorsu market
- Khiva - Visit to the most romantic city on the Silk Road, a UNESCO protected site and perhaps the most perfectly preserved of all the Silk Road cities
- Bukhara - Admire Islamic architecture, browse bustling bazaars and take tea adjacent to the beautiful pool of Lyab-i-Khauz
- Samarkand - Discover the cultural gem of the Silk Road and visit the awe-inspiring restored madrassas standing on three sides of Registan Square
- Yurt stay - Sample nomadic life with an overnight in a traditional felt tent
- Issyk Kul Lake - Drive around the second largest alpine lake in the world
- Kumis - try to drink Kumos, a national drink made from fermented mare’s milk, and it is mildly alcoholic
- Kochkor village - you will meet a family that will show you the way of how national woolen felt carpets are produced. You even can create your own carpet together with them
- Tue Ashuu pass - you will see panoramic views of Tue Ashuu pass, which is more than 3000 meters high! This road is considered to be one of the most beautiful in Kyrgyzstan
Arrive in Tashkent, welcome at the airport and transfer to the hotel.
Afternoon sightseeing tour of Tashkent: Abdul Kasim Madrassah, Khast Imam Complex – a religious center of the city consisting of the Barakkhan Madrasah, Kaffal Shashi Mausoleum and the library of Islamic Literature with the Holy Koran Book of the VII century. Explore traditional Chor-Su Bazaar.
Visiting modern part of Tashkent by metro: Amir Timur Square, Applied Art Museum, Earthquake Memorial, Independence Square. Overnight in Tashkent.
Breakfast in the hotel. Transfer to the airport for morning flight to Urgench. Arrive Urgench, transfer to Khiva. Starting city tour – inner town of Ichan Kala (XIV-XX CC) with Muhamad Amin Khan Madrassah, Kalta Minor Minaret, Kunya Ark, Muhamad Rahim Khan Madrassah, Juma Mosque and Minaret, Tash Hauli Palace, Islam Khodja Minaret and Madrassah, Shirgazi Khan Madrassah, Pahlavan Mahmud Mausoleum. Overnight in Khiva.
Breakfast at the hotel. Drive outside Khiva to visit the archaeological monuments of Ancient Khorezm.
In written sources of the Arab conquest period, Khorezm is called a country of "tens of thousands of fortresses". This region is a real gem for archaeologists. In fact, today in the Khorezm region archaeologists have found dozens of ancient cities, ruins of former powerful castles and royal palaces.
The most famous of them are Toprak Kala, Kyzyl Kala, Ayaz Kala (“Kala” is translated as a fortress.) Even today, the colossal sizes of the ruins impress with its magnificence and power.
Drive back to Khiva. Overnight at the hotel.
Breakfast at the hotel. Drive to Bukhara through Kyzylkum Desert (7-8 hours). Stop at Amudarya River bank. Lunch in a local café. Arrive in Bukhara, free time. Overnight at the hotel.
Breakfast at the hotel. Sightseeing in Bukhara – one of the most important stops on the Silk Road. City tour with visits to the Ark Fortress (I-XX CC), Bolo Hauz Mosque (XVIII C), Samanids Mausoleum (IX-X CC), Chashma-Ayub Mausoleum (XII-XVI CC). PM tour on foot along the old town of Bukhara from Poi-Kalyan complex with Kalyan Minaret (XII C) through orient bazaars with three trade domes of Toki Zargaron (XV C), Toki Sarrafon (XVI C), Toki Telpak Furushon (XVI C), Ulugbek Madrassah (XV C), Abdulazizkhan Madrassah (XVII C), Lyabi Hauz complex (XVI -XVII CC), surrounded by ancient mulberry trees, restaurants and cafes. Overnight at the hotel.
Breakfast at the hotel. Today we drive outside Bukhara for sightseeing:Sitorai Mokhi Khosa – summer residence of the last Emir of Bukhara, Baghautdin Nakhshbandi Mausoleum – a center of Sufism.
Drive to Samarkand. Overnight at the hotel.
Breakfast at the hotel. We will start sightseeing from Registan Square (which means “desert” in Persian) and three madrassahs (religious study centers) surrounding the square: Ulughbek Madrassah, Sher-Dor Madrassah, and Tillya-Kari Madrassah – covered with gold. Visit to Gur Emir Mausoleum (tomb of Tamerlane), Shakhi Zinda Necropolis, Ulugbek Observatory.
Continue sightseeing with Bibi Khanym Mosque – built by Amir Timur (Tamerlane) in XV century and Siyab Bazaar. Overnight at the hotel.
Breakfast at the hotel. Check-out hotel. Continue sightseeing in Samarkand: Excavation of an ancient city and museum of Afrosiab, and Tombstone of Saint Daniyar. The prophet Daniyar (Daniel) is revered by three world religions: Christianity, Judaism and Islam, and mausoleum is still a pilgrimage place for the followers of all three Abrahamic religions. Visit to the Silk Carpets factory ‘Khujum’, where you can observe the whole process of weaving silk carpets based on hand made technology.
Transfer to the railway station for “Afrosiyob” train. Arrive in Tashkent, transfer to the hotel. Overnight at the hotel.
Breakfast at the hotel. Check-out at 12:00. Transfer to the airport for flight Tashkent-Bishkek. Meeting in Bishkek airport, transfer to the hotel. Overnight at the hotel.
Breakfast at the hotel. Drive to Issyk Kul Lake, surrounded by the celestial mountains. It’s the second largest alpine lake in the world (1608 m. above sea level). The lake is called "the pearl of Central Asia". Due to the salty water, Lake Issyk Kul possesses curative qualities. On route to the lake you will visit Burana Tower (XI century minaret) and an open air museum of Balbals (stone warriors). Free time. Overnight at the hotel.
Breakfast at the hotel. Drive to Karakol city. On the way, we will take a short break to give you the opportunity to visit ancient stone inscriptions (dating back to 800 B.C.). These petroglyphs were made more than 2 000 years ago by shamans. Then we continue our way along the northern shore of the lake to the town of Karakol. You will visit Dungan mosque, built in a Chinese style without using a single metal nail. The mosque will be followed by a visit to an old wooden Orthodox Church. Overnight at the guesthouse.
Breakfast at the hotel. Today we will drive to Jeti Oguz gorge. It’s famous for its red rock formations that are called the Seven Bulls – Jeti Oguz. You will see Broken Heart Mountain also. There are yurts in the gorge and people can offer you Kumis to drink. It is a national drink made from fermented mare’s milk, and it is mildly alcoholic. Overnight in nomadic felt dwellings, yurts.
Breakfast. Today we will drive to Kochkor village along the southern shore of Issyk Kul Lake. This is a great chance to see the whole lake from all sights. On the way, we will stop at Barskaun gorge and have a walk to a mountain waterfall. Then we will have a break in Bokonbaeva village, where we meet a local eagle-hunter. He hunts hares and foxes with the help of eagles (traditional way of nomads hunting). At the Kochkor village you will meet a family that will show you the way of how national woolen felt carpets are produced. You even can create your own carpet together with them. Overnight in a homestay.
After breakfast, we will drive along high mountains to Tash Rabat Caravanserai through beautiful Kichi Naryn gorge. The high mountains, picturesque passes, and nomadic way of life make Kyrgyzstan an irresistible travel destination. Views of this mountain road are breathtaking. You will drive over mountain pass named Jalpak Bel at an elevation of more than 3000 meters. Tash Rabat is located at the very heart of Tian Shan Mountains, on the Great Silk Road (Stone Castle from the XIV century). The building is unique, built of stone blocks inside a mountain at an elevation of 3200 m above sea level. In total there are 31 rooms in the mountain. The walls are 1m thick. There are also underground prison cells formerly used to incarcerate thieves in ancient times. Overnight in yurts.
After breakfast we start our drive to the second largest lake in Kyrgyzstan – Son Kul Lake. This lake is surrounded by mountains and it is the highest alpine lake in Kyrgyzstan, situated at an altitude of 3013 meters above sea level. Kyrgyz nomads started to come to this wonderful area with their families for rest and relaxation. Herders of the Naryn region come to the lake to use it as a pastureland. After our arrival, you will be free to explore and enjoy the virgin nature of the lake and its surroundings. Dinner and overnight is in nomadic collapsible dwellings - yurts.
After breakfast, you will have free time at Son Kul Lake, to explore nature on your own. You can ride along the lake on a horse, or just relax and soak in the calm atmosphere of the lake side wilderness. Also you will have time to communicate with nomads and have a glimpse into their way of life. Then we will drive to the village of Kyzyl Oi located in the gorge. The drive to Kyzyl Oi traverses over one of the most beautiful passes, along the top of a mountain. This is a very remote village. Overnight in a homestay.
After meeting with locals, we will drive to the capital of Kyrgyzstan – Bishkek city. The road to the city goes through the southern part of Kyrgyzstan. During your transfer be prepared for amazing views of impressive mountains and gorges. Today you will see panoramic views of Tue Ashuu pass, which is more than 3000 meters high! This road is considered to be one of the most beautiful in Kyrgyzstan. Overnight at the hotel.
Transfer to airport. End of the tour.
I would like to thank you for organising a wonderful tour of Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan . The arrangements all worked perfectly, the transfers, the tours, and the travel between cities. The best part of the trip, and what made it so good, was the quality of the guides in each destination. They were all friendly, helpful and knowledgeable. I would like to single out for particular praise Firuz in Bukhara for his encyclopedic knowledge, and Naim in Samarkand, equally for his knowledge and for his helpfulness above and beyond what might be expected, including finding me a dentist!
The tour in Kyrgyzstan was as good. The guide and driver from Ak-Sai travel, Nurga and Anatoly, really made the tour special. I cannot praise them enough, particularly when we realised we did not have enough warm clothes for the trip to Song Kul and Nurga accompanied us to the mall to buy some more!
The highlight of our Uzbekistan tour was Samarkand , particularly the Registan and its evening sound and light show.
The most spectacular of all the sights in Kyrgyzstan was the eagle hunter, a really wonderful experience. I would unreservedly recommend Uzbek Travel and Ak-Sai travel to anybody interested in touring in Central Asia .
Regards Nigel Goddard
3 star hotels
4-5 star hotels
|1||$upon request||$upon request|
3 star hotels
5 star hotels
|N of nights|
|Tashkent||Uzbekistan, Shodlik Palace||2|
|Khiva||Euro Asia, Old Khiva||1|
|Bukhara||Omar Khayyam, Devon Begi||3|
|Samarkand||Grand Samarkand, Diyora||2|
Hotels will be booked based on availability
- Visa invitation letter;
- Transport service on comfortable tourist class vehicle (a certain type of vehicle is provided depending on the group size);
- Economy class ticket for flight Tashkent-Urgench;
- Double/twin & Single sharing accommodation in the hotels with full breakfast;
- English speaking guide accompanying you during the entire itinerary;
- Sightseeing with a local English speaking guide in each city;
- Economy class ticket for train Samarkand-Tashkent;
- Aydar Yurt Camp and homestay (Full board);
- Entrance tickets to the museums, mausoleums and other sights ;
- FREE HUGS.
- Consular fees for Uzbekistan tourist visa;
- Fees for the use of cameras and videos in the monuments and tourist sites;
- Fees for extra service (folklore performance, meetings, tickets for a theatre and visits to museums which are not specified in the program);
- Alcohol drinks;
- Lunches, Dinners;
- Personal items.