TASHKENT

Tashkent will be very likely the first city you’ll arrive in when you travel to Uzbekistan. What are the best places to visit in Tashkent? 
Some people say Uzbekistan’s modern capital Tashkent lives a bit in the shadows of the more attractive-looking Silk Road cities Samarkand, Bukhara and Khiva. But Tashkent is a really nice destination to visit and spend some time if you know where to go.
The city can be seen as an introduction to the stunning Islamic architecture – probably the reason why you’re going to travel to Uzbekistan – as it has some beautiful historical sites. It’s also a very modern city with many parks and fountains, beautiful statues, nice cafes, and great restaurants.
Tashkent is a fantastic base from which to explore the rest of Uzbekistan.  It’s very easy to take buses or trains from Tashkent to all the other interesting destinations around the country.
Like much the rest of Uzbekistan, it’s boiling hot in the summer and can be quite chilly in winters. The best months to visit Tashkent with the most comfortable weather are April, May, September, and October. Shoulder months such as March and November can be good months to opt for to get fewer crowds and a bit more of a bargain, though plan to bundle up, especially in evenings.

 
Kukeldash Madrasah
The Kukeldash Madrasah is the largest madrasah and one of the most famous historical places in Tashkent. 
While Kukeldash is not as impressive at the three madrasahs surrounding Registan Square in Samarkand, the building still is a beautiful example of Islamic architecture and worth a quick visit.
Built in 1570 by Governor Dervish Khan, known as Kukeldash, which means “milk brother” of khan, it is as originally a Muslim school. In the 18th century the madrassah was arranged as a caravanserai for merchants. In the 19th century, madrassah served as a fortress of Kokand khans. Until 1865 madrassah Kukeldash served as a place of public execution.
Kukeldash Madrassah, Tashkent Madrassah have repeatedly fallen into ruins. Tumbled by an earthquake in 1866 and 1886, the portal was then restored. Madrassah was renovated in 1950-1960-1977 years. Today Kukeldash functions again as a spiritual institution.
You can enter the courtyard of the madrasah where you’ll find a small wood carving workshop. 
To the north-east of the Kukeldash madrassah, there is preserved a monument of an earlier time, construction of which is connected with the name of Khoja Ahrar. It’s Dzuma Mosque. The Dzuma Mosque is right next to the Kukeldash Madrasah and worth a quick stop to admire the architecture.
 
 
Chorsu Bazaar
You can visit bazaars the world over and the Chorsu Bazaar in Tashkent is definitely up to world market standards (if such a thing exists). 
The Chorsu Bazaar is Tashkent’s biggest market where locals can buy anything from raw food products, fresh fruits and veggies, honey and spices to clothing, jewelry, beauty products and more. You can just find everything here!
The central part of the bazaar is covered by an impressive blue dome, but you’ll also find many outdoor food, textile and household stalls in the surrounding streets and alleys that covered by market. It seems like this market just goes on forever!
Even if you don’t want to buy anything, the Chorsu Bazaar is an ideal place to do some people watching and observe the cultural blend Tashkent is famous for. 
We suggest doing some souvenir shopping here, as the prices are cheaper than in the tourist towns of Samarkand and Bukhara. Prices can of course be haggled and you can get things a low as 50% of the original price.

Khast Imam Square
The Hazrat Imam Complex, also known as the Hast-Imam Ensemble or Khast Imam, is the religious heart of Tashkent. It’s the perfect place to start your Tashkent sightseeing trip. This collection of mosques and madrasas in the centre of the city and  is home to what is supposed to be the worlds oldest Qur’an.
It is a small museum where the text is kept is certainly worth checking out it is just a tiny portion of this huge complex.
While you walk around the complex, you’ll see some beautiful architectural monuments, such as the Barak Khan Madrasah, the Tilla Sheikh Mosque and the mausoleum of Saint Abu Bakr Kaffal Shashi. 
The surrounding narrow alleyways are a perfect place for a wander and get a glimpse of old Tashkent.
As one of the more popular Tashkent tourist attractions, Khast Imam’s traditional Islamic architecture is stunning to behold. Its grandiose beauty impresses everyone! Try to visit early to avoid the massive tour bus groups.

Applied Art Museum
When you are on your trail to search for the best museums in Uzbekistan, you cannot miss the Museum of Applied Arts in Tashkent. What will amaze you here is the works of applied arts, which emphasizes on ancient traditions related to schools. Along with these, encounter the works created by the traditional craftsmen’s method and also the work of modern art overwhelmed with colorful monuments. Visit the shops inside the museums to purchase antique artworks of the Uzbek Masters.
 
 

Independence Square
Independence Square, also known as Memorial Square, is a popular gathering place for the residents of Tashkent. It’s located right in the center of Tashkent. 
This square used to be known as Lenin Square during the Soviet Union but upon declaration of independence in 1991, it was re-named to Mustakillik Maydoni, which translates to Independence Square in English.
It’s used for large gatherings and performances on festive days, like Uzbekistan Independence Day (1st of September) and New Year (1st of January). 
Independence Square has some of the most beautiful fountains of the city and a number of significant monuments.
Among them 16 marble columns joined by a bridge and sculptures of storks on top of it that symbolize peace, the Independence
The square is a great place to plop down for a rest between sites in Tashkent and a great place to meet friendly locals. Situated around the square are the Senate Building, Romanov Palace, Crying Mother Monument, and the 1966 Earthquake Memorial.

Alisher Navoi Opera and Ballet Theater
Tashkent’s Alisher Navoi Opera and Ballet Theatre is one of the most elegant buildings in the city. It was designed by Alexey Shchusev (the same architect responsible for Lenin’s Tomb in Red Square, Moscow), and was built by Japanese prisoners of war in the mid-1940s. Recently restored, the chandeliers and murals are back to their original glory, and the national ballet and opera companies put on world-class performances. The cheapest tickets cost just a few dollars.
The Navoi Theatre is the best place to catch a ballet show in Tashkent and is a must see!
 

Tashkent Metro
Another top thing to do in Tashkent is to ride its metro. It’s the perfect activity to do in the early afternoon during the summer when it’s scorching hot outside as the metro has air-conditioning. 
Tashkent has some of the most beautiful metro stations in the world. Visiting Tashkent’s subway will be one of the most memorable highlights of your time in the city!
Tashkent metro system is famed for being grand. Almost every metro station in Tashkent is fascinating. They all have their own unique architectural features and artistic elements. These stations look more like art museums or fancy hotel lobbies and each one is centered around a different theme. 
Tashkent Metro is not only a cheap and fast way to zip between the sites of the city, but it’s also a sight to behold all itself.
 
 
 
 


Broadway Boulevard (Sailgokh Street)
Sailgokh Street is a pedestrian street that unites the two most important squares of Tashkent: Amir Timur Square and Independence Square. 
The street is known as Broadway Boulevard is a very popular place for the locals to enjoy time with their friends and families.
You can find all kinds of food, souvenir, and art stalls on this boulevard, along with street artists and carnival games for kids. 
It’s particularly nice to walk there during the early evening when Broadway Boulevard is illuminated by all kinds of lights.

See the City by Night
Uzbekistan like to show off, whether it’s with high speed trains, lavish decoration or gigantic buildings the country are into displays of wealth and grandeur. Tashkent at night is no exception. The entire city seems to come alive with light from the rainbow lit underpasses or the huge Uzbek flag lighting the side of a building you can find all kinds of light displays and flashing masterpieces on any night of the week.
 
 
 

Best Day Trip from Tashkent – Chimgan Canyon
Located 1 hour or so north of Tashkent is the Chimgan canyon, home to hiking, rafting and skiing amongst other things.
Not necessarily the things that first come to mind when you think of Uzbekistan, there are plenty of hiking trails as well as options for an overnight stay.
To get here you can either take a marshrutka or a private taxi. Naturally public transport will be cheaper but you may not be able to get there without changing.


Sheikh Zaynuddin Bobo mausoleum
It is unfortunate that tourist routes do not always go through this place. This is exactly what Tashkent should be proud of. Sheikh Zaynuddin Bobo mausoleum is the oldest building of the capital of Uzbekistan, built at the beginning of the 11th century and two hundred years later serving as a cell of the Sufi saint, one of the patrons of Tashkent - Zaynuddin-bobo ...
Arriving from Baghdad, the heir to the mystical order of Suchrovardia, the young Sheikh Zaynuddin settled at the gates of Kukcha in the suburbs of Kuhi Arifon, which means Hill of the Sages, and spent the rest of his life until 95 years in the underground cell in unceasing prayers for the welfare of others. Only occasionally did he come out to work miracles and give wise instructions. The Zaynuddin Bobo mausoleum was subsequently raised over his cell and tomb, which today has become one of the largest religious centers in Uzbekistan. In the 90s of the XX century, during the restoration of the mausoleum, archaeologists drew their attention to the amazing arrangement of the saint's underground shelter, which turned out to be an observatory for observing the movement of celestial bodies without the help of astronomical instruments.

 

 

 


Yunus Khan Mausoleum
Yunus Khan Mausoleum is the famous mausoleum of Tashkent, which is located near the mausoleum of Sheikhantakhur. This is one of the two monumental buildings of Tashkent of the XV century, preserved up to this day. The mausoleum was raised after the death of Sheikh Yunus Khan, between 1487 - 1502, by his son Ahmad.
The Yunus-Khan Mausoleum is one of the few monuments of the 15th century that has been preserved in Tashkent and has almost no analogues in Central Asia, as it is built in the shape of a T-shaped khanaki, a pilgrimage monastery with two-storey dwelling cells. The mausoleum of Yunus Khan, a rather massive structure with a double dome and a portal, it amazes visitors with its size. The entrance is decorated with a high lancet arch. Outside, the mausoleum is decorated in a strict ascetic style: the facade is decorated only with a wooden lattice, calligraphic Arabic script and girih ornament. A wooden carved entrance door was moved to the mausoleum of Yunus Khan in the 30s of the XX century from a dismantled quarter mosque.
The interior is decorated with stone columns, and under the arch, you can see mukarnas - a folded arch in the form of stalactites. The hall of the mausoleum is opened on three sides by apertures, and its outer dome is mounted on a cylindrical drum. The domed ceiling of the main hall is designed in the form of intersecting arches and sails. The Yunus-Khan Mausoleum is full of mysteries: between the door-leaves “chang” - an ancient oriental instrument was ingeniously built, thus making the doors musical. In addition, the grave itself was not found in the burial place, its true location remains a mystery to this day.
 
 

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