My heart is in Uzbekistan
I miss Uzbekistan since my last trip there. I'll be back soon, my love!
Have you watched the YouTube channel HAVAS guruhi? It is an Uzbeki band of two sisters and a brother who sing songs from Bollywood films, which are very popular in that country. The Havas guruhi band has also performed for rock singer Baadshah, Karan Johar and the music director Shekhar Ravjiani on the singing reality show Indian Idol? Uzbekistan is a Central Asian nation and former Soviet republic, which was once ruled by Hindu and Buddhist rulers before it became Muslim.
So their ties are very old as well as very much alive.
I found Uzbekis to be very friendly with Indians and feel a cultural connect with Indian music, dance, and films. Raj Kapoor songs are a big hit with the older generation, while the newer generation follows the new stars. Once they learn that you are Indian, there is an instant connection with most people.
Uzbekistan is green, pollution-free, and well-planned. It has a number of spots worth visiting for their natural as well as architectural beauty. There are ancient bazaars in Tashkent where you can shop, and there is a stunning Gur-Emir Mausoleum that is surprisingly unknown to the world outside. You can also take a trip to the breathtakingly beautiful desert of Samarkand. You may take in the beauty of the Ark Citadel or soak your skin in the refreshing waters of a hammam in the old quarters of Bukhara.
With over 140 fantastic edifices as old as history, Bukhara is among the most prominent of cities on the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. No wonder it is called the City of Museums as every step of this city records an exciting period in human history. I particularly enjoyed the Ismail Samani Mausoleum, which is among the oldest buildings associated with Islam. From my experience, the Taqi-Telpak Furushon, which is a bazaar of cap makers and Taqi-Zaragon, the bazaar of jewelers are must-visits.
Uzbeki food has great variety and is mostly non-vegetarian with naan-type bread and a variety of curries. Vegetarian and continental fare can, however, be arranged. Uzbeks are family-oriented, welcoming and gracious. They also know how to treat guests. Uzbekistan is also extremely pocket-friendly, which makes a luxury trip possible easily.
Make this trip before the country becomes a rage among international tourists.