What to see in Uzbekistan
Bukhara is another jewel in the crown of Uzbekistan, bursting with 140 amazingly well-preserved architectural monuments. Lovers of design and architecture are spoilt for choice when visiting the city. Lovers of history will be captivated by the history of the place, stretching back at least 2000 years. It is thought to be one of the world’s greatest surviving examples of a medieval Islamic city.
What sets Bukhara apart from the other prominent silk road cities is its atmosphere; authentic tea houses, full with chattering locals conversing in Persian or Uzbek, can be found scattered throughout the city and the warm aroma of freshly baked bread fills the narrow lanes and alleys, ensuring the city radiates a real ‘old-world’ feel. Once a center for Persian scholars between the 8th and 10th centuries, nowadays it is famed for its numerous artisan workshops, where dedicated craftspeople continue the careful work of their ancestors.
The city is compact enough to admire on foot, but the sheer volume of must-see sights can be overwhelming so it’s recommended to spend a little more time here to truly take in the beauty of Bukhara. The Kalon Minaret, situated within the Po-i-Kalyan Mosque complex, is one of the cities more prominent sites and showcases incredibly intricate brick-work, crafted into complicated and beautiful patterns. Despite the destruction of most of the city during the Mongol invasion, Ghengis Khan was so impressed with the minaret that he ordered that it be spared. Other fascinating sights in Bukhara include the Ismail Samari Mausoleum, a Samarid burial vault, the Ark Fortress, now a museum and the Char Minor an enchanting 4 column mosque.