Overview

Flight - 1 night
Tashkent - 1 night
Khiva - 2 nights
Bukhara - 3 nights
Samarkand - 3 nights
Tashkent - 1 night

THE GOLDEN ROAD TO SAMARKAND

Experience Uzbekistan’s Silk Road cities, from metropolitan Tashkent to Old Khiva’s towers and cupolas, across the Kyzylkum Desert to beautiful Bukhara, and into exotic Samarkand

Start in Tashkent, at once a multi-ethnic metropolis, commercial hub, farmers’ market town and exporter of textiles; in short, Uzbekistan in microcosm. Khiva’s afficionados wax lyrical about the UNESCO listed ‘old town’, where 300 houses and monuments huddle within fortress walls. Travel from Khiva to Bukhara into the timeless, tranquil landscape of the Kyzylkum Desert; its red sand ridges punctuated with small oasis settlements. Bukhara’s entire medieval masterpiece forms its core, complete with labyrinthine lanes, azure onion domes and bastions of the Ark Fortress. At the crossroads of cultures and trade routes, Samarkand reflects exotic architectural styles, where monuments hem huge squares, intricately paved alleys run between mosaicked façades, and silks and spices spill scent and colour through the city’s bazaar.

Key Features

Cultural Tour
Jules Verne Sightseeing
3 UNESCO Heritage Sites
No Single Supplement
Solo Group Departures
Local Expert Guides

Special Event

Dinner in a Local Home

Learn to cook the traditional Uzbek dish ‘Pilov’ in a local home in Samarkand. Meet with the family who live here to learn about daily life. A popular dish throughout Central Asia with variations in diff erent regions ‘Pilov’ usually combines rice with onion and carrots, plus mutton, beef or lamb cooked slowly in layers.

Day 1 Overnight flight from London Heathrow to Tashkent.

Day 2 Early morning transfer to your hotel. Afternoon city tour of the Navoi Theatre, Chorsu market and Independence Square. Optional ballet, opera or theatre performance at the Navoi Theatre (£18). Overnight at the 4-star Hampton by Hilton Tashkent. (B, D)

Day 3 Fly to Urgench and transfer to your hotel in Khiva. Afternoon walking tour of the city includes Old Khiva’s city walls, the Kunya Ark, minarets, a mausoleum and Tash-Khauli Palace. Two nights at the 3-star Asia Khiva Hotel or similar. (B, D)

Day 4 Day at leisure in Khiva, perhaps stroll in the atmospheric Old Town; or take an optional tour of its ancient fortresses (bookable locally, approx. $50). (B, D)

Day 5 Travel by road to Bukhara (8 ½ hrs, including barbecue lunch stop) across the Kyzylkum (‘Red Sand’) Desert. Three nights at the 3-star Devon Begi Hotel or similar. (B, L)

Day 6 Walking tour of the madrasahs, Maghoki Arrar Mosque, and tea houses of Lyabi-Khauz Square; and through the Trading Domes to Poi Kalyan Square and the Mir-i-Arab madrasah. A short drive in the afternoon takes you to Ismail Samani Mausoleum, stroll to Prophet Job’s Well and Bukhara’s old citadel, the Ark Fortress. (B, D)

Day 7 Morning tour to the 19th-century Emir’s Palace, continuing to Char Minar. Afternoon free to explore medieval Bukhara, perhaps finding the 15th-century Silk Road caravanserai courtyard. (B, D)

Day 8 Travel by road (5 hrs) to Samarkand. Afternoon tour of Bibi-Khanym Mosque and the three madrasahs which frame Registan Square, an amazing ensemble of ornately tiled arches, domes, and pillars. Three nights at the 3-star Asia-Samarkand or Grand Samarkand Superior. (B, D)

Day 9 Morning tour to Gur Emir mausoleum (Tamerlane’s tomb), the Ulug Beg Observatory – the work of his grandson, and the Shah-i-Zinda (Living King) complex. Afternoon free. Evening Special Event dinner. (B, D)

Day 10 An intriguing introduction to local speciality products, with morning visits to see the Khujum factory’s hand-crafting of silk carpets, and the Meros workshop’s mulberry tree paper-making. Afternoon free. (B, D)

Day 11 Morning at leisure or take an optional tour to the palaces of Shakhirsabz, the birthplace of Tamerlane (bookable locally, approx. $50). Afternoon transfer to board the high-speed Afrosiyob train to Tashkent. Overnight at the Hampton by Hilton Tashkent. (B, D)

Day 12 Return flight (arriving later the same day). (B)

  • Key
  • B - Breakfast
  • L - Lunch
  • D - Dinner

Notes

Lyabi-Khauz Square (Day 6) & Shah-I-Zinda (Day 9) monuments involve many steps.
Travel between the cities by road, whilst being a classic way to experience the country, involves some long journeys with only limited opportunities for comfort breaks.
The order of sightseeing tours may vary in accordance with local conditions.

Notes

Hotels in Uzbekistan are simple and unpretentious but well-located with a restaurant, bar and air-conditioned rooms with private facilities and satellite TV. From time to time, there may be water and electricity shortages and, on occasion, alternative hotels may be used. WiFi (free) is available at all hotels on the tour, although can be intermittent depending on local conditions. Food is based on fresh local produce and is nutritious but can be repetitive.

2023

Fridays
per person in a twin/double room
Uzbekistan Airways from Heathrow

Date Price
April 7 £2595
April 21 £2545
May 12 £2595
May 19 £2545
June 9 £2545
June 30 £2595
August 11 £2495
September 8 £2595
September 22 £2545
October 6 £2545
October 20 £2595
November 3 £2495

2024

Click here for 2024 departures

No Single Supplement

(limited dates/availability)

Solo Group Departure

30 June & 3 November 2023
15 March & 1 November 2024

Supplements per person

Single Supplement

NO SINGLE SUPPLEMENT
(limited availability)
Jun 9 & Aug 11

Solo Group Departures
(No Single Supplement)
Jun 30 & Nov 3

Single supplement £425

Optional Excursions

Optional ballet, opera or theatre performance at the Navoi Theatre £18

Extension Options

Extension - Ferghana Valley
3 nights £625
Single supplement £90

Extra nights – Tashkent
Hampton by Hilton
£70 (per night)
Single supplement £55

Privately Guided

Add £895 per person

Tour Only

Save £550 
Arrival or departure transfer add £16

Price Includes
Air travel and taxes, transfers, 10 nights' accommodation, half board, itinerary as described, services of guides and local representatives. If our specially negotiated airfares are unavailable at the time of booking, a supplement may apply.

Not Included
Travel insurance, visa procurement, optional excursions, overseas airport taxes, tipping, any government taxes or compulsory charges introduced after publication.

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The Golden Road to Samarkand

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