Uzbekistan Travel Guide
Uzbekistan Travel: General Information
Uzbekistan, many will say, is the ultimate tourism destination…and truly so. Every year this Central Asian country receives tourists in hordes – while some are lured by its over 7000 years of rich history, others visit Uzbekistan to view its architectural treasure trove; some find its natural beauty irresistible, others cannot ignore the magnetism of the adventure-sports. For some, Uzbekistan essentially means religious pilgrimage, but for others it is purely medical tourism.
As for you, you can go visiting the nation’s UNESCO World Heritage sights like the city of Samarkand, go rock climbing or skiing in the highlands of Chimgan, roam about in the red desert lands of the Kyzylkum Desert to catch a glimpse of the rare fauna, go round the bazaars collecting Uzbek pottery, silks and other artifacts created by local artisans even as you taste the famous Uzbek cuisine. Lap it all up and Uzbekistan will promise you more in the form of its pleasant weather, warm hospitality, clean ambiance and security.
Uzbekistan Travel: Key Facts
Capital City: Tashkent
Area: 447,400 sq km
Population: 27.7 million
Monetary Unit: Uzbekistan som (UZS)
Official Language: Uzbek
International Dialing Code: 998
Uzbekistan Travel: Popular Tourist Destinations
Tashkent: Tashkent, the capital city of Uzbekistan, may lack the appeal of the Great Silk Road cities but it very well represents modern Uzbekistan. The chief attractions in the national capital are its many museums and memorials like Fine Arts Museum of Uzbekistan, History Museum, Earthquake Monument, etc. Among Tashkent’s other must-see sights are the Alisher Navoi Opera and Ballet Theatre, Palace of Prince Romanov and the open-air bazaar, named, Chorsu Bazaar.
Samarkand: Samarkand, the second largest city after Tashkent, was conferred the unique honor of being a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2001. The star-attraction of Samarkand is certainly the Registan, but you should make it a point to visit the whole city for its numerous architectural/cultural wonders.
Bukhara: Bukhara, like Samarkand, is full of magnificent mosques, madrassahs, palaces and mausoleums that mesmerize you with their tall minarets, arresting blue mosaic tiles and turquoise domes. The historic city center is a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Khiva: Khiva, yet another ancient city, must find a place in your itinerary. Home of the very famous Ichon Qala (or the Old Town), Khiva was the first Uzbek-city to be enlisted as a World Heritage Site.
Apart from these, Shakhrizabs, Termez and Kokand are other Uzbek-cities that you would definitely like to visit.
Uzbekistan Travel: Economy and Infrastructure
Uzbekistan is one of the fast growing economies of the world but a considerable section of its population is still below the poverty line. Traditionally an agricultural society, Uzbekistan has seen immense growth of the industrial and service sectors post independence.
The Central Asian country is rich in resources – besides oil and natural gas deposits, coal, copper, gold, lead, zinc, etc. are also mined here. Uzbekistan’s exports range from its natural resources to its agricultural and industrial produces. Chief imports include chemicals, foodstuffs, machinery and metals. Uzbekistan’s main trading partners are China, Kazakhstan, Russia, South Korea and Turkey.
Speaking of infrastructure, there is a definite need to bring about improvements both in communication and transportation. Uzbekistan has more than 20 Hydroelectric Power Plants.
Uzbekistan Travel: Culture
Uzbekistan essentially has a multi-ethnic culture and society. Uzbeks comprise about 75% of the entire population; minority groups like Karakalpaks, Kazaks, Russians, Tajiks and Tatars constitute the remaining 25% of the populace. The inhabitants, including many of the minority groups, follow Islam. The influence of Persian culture is much too apparent in the music, art and architecture of the land. Coming to sports, Uzbekistan has been the birthplace of Kurash, the Uzbek-form of wrestling.
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