Uzbekistan is a delightful country which contains many cultural and historical treasures. This is the land of the great Khanates and Sultanates, the kingdoms that controlled the towns of the Silk Road such as Khiva, Bukhara and Samarkand.
The Uzbek capital is Tashkent, which started life as a little oasis at the hills of the Golestan mountains several thousand years ago and has grown into the colossal city that it is today. The city has a myriad of statues, museums and art galleries to explore.
Uzbekistan is most famous for its incredible historical cities. Samarkand was once home of the mighty warlord Timur, and home of the great Registan Square, where beautiful madrassas are loaded down with ornate majolica and azure mosaics. Bukhara perfectly captures the atmosphere of Central Asia before the Russian domination, and has many spectacular buildings such as the Ark Fortress, the Ismail Samanid Mausoleum and the Kalyan Minaret (Death Tower).
The third of the main UNESCO sites is Khiva and is the best preserved Khanate. Its long and bloody history is fascinating, and the walls that used to provide sanctuary for the travellers on the Silk Road are as intact as the old town inside.
Uzbekistan is covered mostly by the arid Kyzyl Kum desert in the central regions and by striking mountain ranges in the north. The music in Uzbekistan is similar to Persian classical music, and makes use of lutes, drums and jingles to create poetic love songs. This soundtrack adds to the endless reasons as to why Uzbekistan is an awe-inspiring country to visit.