Tour of Zoroastrian and Buddhist cultural Heritage of Uzbekistan12 Days | Tashkent, Termez, Nukus, Khiva, Bukhara, Samarkand

Tour map

A complete 12-day tour will introduce you to a Zoroastrian and Buddhist cultural heritage of Uzbekistan. Many scientists consider Central Asia, especially Khorezm as a birthplace of the Zoroastrianism and its prophet Zaratustra. Buddhism also played a vital role in the ideology of the Ancient Termez (southern Uzbekistan) for 7 centuries long: from the 1st till 7th century A.D.

During the tour you will visit ancient cities and the most beloved touristic spots of Uzbekistan. You will discover a beautiful world of avant-garde art collection in Nukus and yurt camp in the desert Kyzylkum up to the Gur-Emir Mausoleum in Samarkand and ancient fortress Itchan-Kala in Khiva.

Tour itinerary:

Day 1: Arrival in Tashkent
 
Arrive in Tashkent. You will be met by our driver and transferred to the hotel. Check in to the hotel at noon. Guided tour in Tashkent: visit History Museum to explore vast collection of artifacts related to Zoroastrian and Buddhist period in Uzbekistan. Continue to archaeological site of Ming Urik, visit Old City part of Tashkent with Chorsu bazaar, Independence SquareAmir Timur Square in center of Tashkent.
Overnight at the hotel.
Duration of sightseeing tour: 5 hours
Day 2: Tashkent – Termez
 
Transfer to local airport for morning flight to Termez (661 km, 2 h.). Upon arrival you will be met by driver and guide. Start sightseeing in ancient Buddhist center and one of the oldest cities in Central Asia – Termez. Visit Kokildor-Ota Khanaka, Fortress Kyrk-Kyz – a summer residence of Samani rulers, Sultan Saodat Ensemble, and Zurmala Tower – Buddha''s stupa. Continue to Buddhist archaeological sites of Kara-Tepe*, Fayaz-Tepe and Mausoleum of Al-Hakim at-Termezi.
Free time in the evening. Overnight at the hotel.
Duration of sightseeing tour: 4-5 hours
*Visit to Kara-Tepe is subject to approval by the State Border Committee.
Day 3: Termez – Tashkent
 
Check-out from the hotel till noon. Continue guided tour in Termez. Drive north-east to see Kampyr-Tepe – Greco-Bactrian Kingdom fortress (35 km, 1 h.). Then visit Jarkurgan Minaret (30 km, 50 min.). Drive back to Termez, on the way enjoy views of Surkhan oasis and Friendship Bridge, which connects Uzbekistan and Afghanistan. Visit Archaeology Museum to explore exhibits discovered on the territory of Termez and its surroundings. In the evening transfer to the airport for flight to Tashkent. Upon arrival in Tashkent transfer to the hotel. Overnight at the hotel.
Duration of sightseeing tour: 6-7 hours
Day 4: Tashkent – Nukus – Ayaz-Kala
 
Transfer to local airport for flight to Nukus (1255 km, 2 h. 45 min.). Arrival in Nukus, transfer to the Savitsky Karakalpakstan Art Museum. The museum hosts the world''s second largest collection of Russian avant-garde art and exposition of Karakalpak applied arts items. Have a short drive around center of Nukus: see statue of Karakalpak poet Berdakh, Nukus City Hall, and Drama Theatre. In the afternoon drive to Ayaz-Kala Yurt Camp via Chilpyk – hill of silence or Zoroastrian dakhma. Arrive in Ayaz-Kala Yurt Camp, dinner and overnight in the yurt camp.
Meals: dinner.
Day 5: Ayaz-Kala – Gaur-Kala – Koykirilgan-Kala – Toprak-Kala – Khiva
 
From Ayaz-Kala Yurt Camp visit a few of the larger fortresses: Gyaur-Kala – meaning infidel fortress, Koi-Krylgan-Kala, and the fortress of Toprak-Kala – residence of ancient Khorezm rulers. Late in the afternoon drive to Khiva. Arrive in Khiva, check in to the hotel. Overnight at the hotel.
Meals: breakfast, lunch.
Day 6: Khiva
 
Spend a day in UNESCO World Heritage site Itchan-Kala Fortress. Visit Mukhammad Aminkhan Madrasah, Mukhammad Rahimkhan Madrasah, Kalta-Minor, Kunya-Ark, Juma Mosque, Tash-Khovli Palace, Pakhlavan Makhmud Mausoleum, Minaret of Islam-Khoja. Free time in the afternoon. Overnight at the hotel.
Duration of sightseeing tour: 5 hours
Day 7: Khiva – Bukhara
 
In the morning depart Khiva and drive to Bukhara (480 km, 7-8 h.*). The Great Silk Road once routed through Bukhara and Khiva ran through the Kyzylkum Desert, as the present road does nowadays**.
Stop en-route to enjoy views of Amudarya river and the desert. Arrive in Bukhara late in the afternoon, check in to the hotel. Time for rest and overnight at the hotel.
*we advise preparing lunch-boxes for this trip.
**some parts of the road are presently being renovated.
Day 8: Bukhara
 
Enjoy a walking sightseeing tour with a guide in Old City. Visit Lyabi-Khauz Ensemble, Magoki-Attori Mosque, Chor-Minor Madrasah, trade domes, Kalyan Minaret, Kalyan Mosque and Miri-Arab Madrasah, Ulugbek and Abdulazizkhan madrasahs, Ark Fortress, Bolo-Khauz Mosque, Chor-Minor Madrasah, Ismail Samani and Chashma-Ayub mausoleums. Overnight at the hotel.
Duration of sightseeing tour: 6-7 hours
Day 9: Bukhara – Samarkand
 
Continue sightseeing tour with a guide. Drive out of the city to Sitorai Mokhi-Khosa – summer residence of Bukhara’s last emir. Head to Mausoleum of Bakhouddin Naqshbandi. In the afternoon depart to Samarkand (280 km, 4 h.). Stop on the way at Caravanserai Rabat-i-Malik dating back to 11th century. Arrive in Samarkand late in the afternoon, check in to hotel. Overnight at the hotel.
Duration of sightseeing tour: 2-3 hours
Day 10: Samarkand
 
Visit Gur-Emir Mausoleum, famous Registan Square, and Bibi Khanum Mosque. Continue to Afrasiab Museum & archaeological site – a hilly area of 212 hectares surrounded by a moat. Archaeologists presently conduct excavations on the site. The Afrasiab Museum displays the model of ancient city and fortress walls, pottery, weaponry, coinage, altars and most of all the mural painting of the 7th century.
Overnight at the hotel.
Duration of sightseeing tour: 5-6 hours
Day 11: Samarkand – Tashkent
 
Continue sightseeing in Samarkand, visit Ulugbek Observatory and Shakhi-Zinda Necropolis. Then drive to Konigil village to explore traditional way of making world famous Samarkand paper from mulberry. Enjoy free time with car and driver at your disposal after sightseeing tour. At 16:00 transfer to railway station to take the fast-speed Afrasiab train departing to Tashkent at 17:00 (300 km). Scheduled arrival time is 19:10. Pick-up and transfer to hotel in Tashkent. Overnight at the hotel.
Duration of sightseeing tour: 3-4 hours
Day 12: Tashkent – departure
 
Check out from the hotel till noon. Transfer to the airport. End of the tour.
  • All transfers 1-2 pax by sedan type car; 3-7 pax by minivan type car; 8-13 pax by 20 seat bus, 14 pax and more by 40-50 seat bus; 
  • Accommodation based on double/twin room sharing, breakfasts included; 
  • Sightseeing tour program in each city with local guides (except for city tour in Nukus and trip to fortresses of Ancient Khorezm); 
  • Entrance tickets to sights as per itinerary;
  • Economy class ticket for flight Tashkent-Termez-Tashkent;
  • Economy class ticket for flight Tashkent-Nukus;
  • Business/Economy-class ticket for train Samarkand-Tashkent as per option;
  • Visa support for Uzbekistan tourist visa;
  • Starting 8 persons English speaking tour leader from Advantour;
  • Starting 10 persons +1 person travels free of charge accommodated in single room.
  • Tour leader to accompany the travellers for the whole period of the tour;
  • Full board (lunches and dinners);
  • Hotel charges for additional services;
  • Consular fees for Uzbekistan tourist visa;
  • Travel insurance.

Accommodation:

Comfort Option
Economy Option
Tashkent - 3 nights
Wyndham Tashkent, Ramada, City Palace Shodlik, Le Grande Plaza, Uzbekistan
Termez - 1 night
Meridian Meridian
Ayaz-Kala - 1 night
Ayaz-Kala yurt camp Ayaz-Kala yurt camp
Khiva - 2 nights
Asia Khiva Malika Kheivak, Orient Star, Malika Khiva, Old Khiva
Bukhara - 2 nights
Omar Khayam, Devon-Begi, Zargaron Plaza, Minorai-Kalon, Asia Bukhara Amulet, Minzifa, K.Komil, Kukeldash, Zargaron, Siyavush
Samarkand - 2 nights
Grand Samarkand Superior, Grand Samarkand, Sultan, Platan, Malika Prime, Asia Samarkand City, Platan, Billuri Sitora, Jahongir, Caravan Serail, Malika Classic