Amazing Ancient Cities (Uz-6)10 Days | Tashkent, Khiva, Bukhara, Nurata, Samarkand

Tour map

Explore five ancient cities of Uzbekistan on this 10-day tour of Tashkent, Khiva, Bukhara, Nurata, and Samarkand. Learn about the history of trade along the Silk Road and about the rise and fall of powerful empires; experience the rich and fascinating Uzbek culture and traditions; and taste the delicious local cuisine. In addition to visiting many famous historical monuments and admiring impressive architecture, the itinerary includes: riding a camel through the vast Kyzylkum Desert, enjoying supper by the fire while listening to a Kazakh akyn (folk singer), staying overnight in a yurt, participating in a pottery master-class, and other activities that showcase Uzbek culture and nature.

Tour itinerary:

Day 1: Tashkent – Arrival
 
Arrive in Tashkent. You will be met by Advantour driver and transferred to the hotel. Check in to the hotel at noon. Meet your guide to start sightseeing in the capital of Uzbekistan, the biggest city in Central Asia. Visit Old City part of Tashkent with Khast-Imam Complex where the world famous Quran of Caliph Uthman has been preserved. Explore Chorsu Bazaar. Then take a ride on Tashkent Metro to city center to walk through Amir Timur Square, Independence Square and Applied Arts Museum. Overnight at the hotel.
Duration of sightseeing tour: 4-5 hours
Day 2: Tashkent – Urgench – Khiva
 
Early morning transfer to local airport for flight to Urgench (1093 km, 1 h 40 min). Arrive in Urgench, transfer to the hotel in Khiva (30 km, 35 min). Later proceed for guided walking sightseeing tour. Spend a day in Itchan-Kala Fortress, a UNESCO World Heritage site. 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 3: Khiva – Bukhara
 
In the morning depart Khiva and drive to Bukhara (480 km, 7-8 h*). Today we will have an overland transfer from Khiva to Bukhara through Kyzylkum desert**. Caravans on the Great Silk Road carrying porcelain and spices used the same route for hundreds of years. Arrive in Bukhara late in the afternoon, check in to the hotel. Time for rest and overnight at the hotel.
**Since there is only one cafe on the way, you might want to consider preparing a packed lunch before this trip.
**Some parts of the road are not in the best condition.
Day 4: 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, Ismail Samani and Chashma-Ayub mausoleums. Overnight at the hotel.
Duration of sightseeing tour: 6-7 hours
Day 5: Bukhara
 
Start the day with a visit to Sitorai Mokhi-Khosa – the summer residence of Bukhara’s last emir, unique site combining Oriental and Russian architecture. Continue to the Mausoleum of Bakhouddin Naqshbandi and Chor-Bakr Necropolis. Enjoy free time in the afternoon. Overnight at the hotel.
Duration of sightseeing tour: 3-4 hours
Day 6: Bukhara – Nurata – Safari Yurt Camp
 
In the morning depart Bukhara and drive to yurt camp located in Kyzylkum desert (230 km, 4 h*). On the way we will have a few stops: Gijduvan pottery masters workshop, Nurata local mosque with a holy spring water, and Nurata pass to see petroglyphs. Arrive in Safari Yurt Camp, accommodation in yurt. Camel riding and free time. After dinner sit around the camp fire and enjoy Kazakh akin singing folk songs. Overnight in the yurt.
Meals: dinner**
*The drive on vans and buses is on average an hour longer.
**Though meals are included, based on the experience and tips of our guests, we advise to take some food in advance, as there are no shops around yurts.
Day 7: Yurt camp – Samarkand
 
In the morning visit desert Aydarkul Lake. Free time on the lake. 

Extras to do in the area:

Option 1. Camel ride to Aydarkul Lake through the desert (8.5 km, 3 h). Enjoy your time on the lake and have lunch. In the afternoon depart to Samarkand.
Cost: $30 per person for a camel and cameleer service.

Option 2. Take a short camel ride to a nearby village Dungalak (1.5 km, 30 min). Participate in baking traditional bread “non”. Take a short walk in the village to see life of locals and return to the camp.
Cost: $20 per person for a camel and cameleer service. 

In the afternoon depart the yurt camp and drive to Samarkand (270 km, 5 h). Arrival in Samarkand, check in to the hotel. Free time. Overnight at the hotel.
Meals: breakfast, lunch or picnic

Day 8: Samarkand
 
Meet your guide and driver at the hotel lobby to start city tour. Visit spectacular Registan Square, remains of Bibi-Khanum Mosque, Siab Bazaar, Ulugbek Observatory, Shakhi-Zinda Necropolis and Gur-Emir Mausoleum, the final resting place of the Turco-Mongol emperor, Timur. Overnight at the hotel.
Duration of sightseeing tour: 6-7 hours
Day 9: Samarkand – Tashkent
 
Check-out from the hotel till noon. Continue sightseeing: visit Afrasiab Museum and the Tomb of Saint Daniel. Then drive to Konigil village to explore traditional way of making Samarkand paper from mulberry. Enjoy free time with car and driver at your disposal after sightseeing tour. Late in the afternoon transfer to railway station to take the high-speed Afrosiyob train departing to Tashkent (journey time 2 h 10 min). Transfer to the hotel for overnight.
Duration of sightseeing tour: 3-4 hours
Day 10: Tashkent – Departure
 
Check-out from the hotel at noon. Free time until transfer to Tashkent International Airport. Departure. End of the tour.
  • All transfers 1-2 pax by sedan type car; 3-7 pax by minivan type car; 8-13 pax by 30 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;
  • Entrance tickets to sights as per itinerary;
  • Economy class ticket for flight Tashkent-Urgench;
  • Business/Economy-class ticket for train Samarkand-Tashkent as per option (on rare occasions when the high-speed train is unavailable, we will replace it with the most-comfortable class of regular train);
  • 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:

Economy Option
Comfort Option
Tashkent - 2 nights
Grand Mir, Sharq, Grand Capital, Bek, NavruzMiran, Wyndham Tashkent, Grand Mir, City Palace
Khiva - 1 night
Malika Kheivak, Orient Star, Malika Khiva, Qosha Darvoza, Old KhivaAsia Khiva, Bek Khiva
Bukhara - 3 nights
Amulet, Minzifa, As-Salom, K.Komil, Fatima, Bibikhanum, Basilic, KavsarOmar Khayam, Devon-Begi, Zargaron Plaza, Asia Bukhara, Minorai-Kalon
Aydarkul - 1 night
Oxus AdventureYurt Camp, Safari Yurt Camp, Aidar Yurt Camp (in a shared yurt)Oxus AdventureYurt Camp, Safari Yurt Camp, Aidar Yurt Camp (in a shared yurt)
Samarkand - 2 nights
Platan, Meros, Orient, Malika Prime, Rabat, City, Billuri Sitora, Arba, Jahongir, Caravan SerailSultan, Grand Samarkand Superior A, Grand Samarkand Superior B, Platan, Malika Prime, Asia Samarkand

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