Day 9: Zangiata Complex

In 12th and 13th century Tashkent there lived a well respected Sufi mystic, Sheikh Ay-hoja Zangi-Ata, literally "Dark Father" owing to his dark complexion, who was revered by the local people, and subsequently by 14th century Uzbek national hero, Amir Timur.  Having hailed from abroad, likely from a noble family in Saudi Arabia, Zangiata spent … Continue reading Day 9: Zangiata Complex

Day 27: Amir Timur Museum

If Amir Timur Square is a ring, the State Museum of the History of the Timurids is a precious stone decorating it, or so said the first President of Uzbekistan, Islam Karimov, when he dedicated the museum in 1996.  After independence, Uzbekistan needed a national hero.  President Karimov was a fan of Amir Timur from early … Continue reading Day 27: Amir Timur Museum

Day 49: Kok-Gumbaz

Our supr-of-the-moment decision to take a side trip to Shakhrisabz turned out to be well worth the extra expense of $50 for the whole day.  We met our taxi driver (as I was reminded after erroneously reporting our hotel arranged it) when we arrived at the Samarkand train station.  He was waiting patiently well past the … Continue reading Day 49: Kok-Gumbaz

Day 59: Gur-e-Amir Mausoleum

"Tomb of the King" in Persian, Gur-e-Amir Mausoleum is the final resting place of Uzbek National Hero, Amir Timur.  Located on the former southwestern edge of Samarkand, the Mausoleum of Tamerlane fell into decay along with the rest of the city in the 17th century after Bukhara regained it's former prominence as the more important … Continue reading Day 59: Gur-e-Amir Mausoleum

Day 83: Amir Timur Square

Spread out beneath the shadow of the imposing edifice of the Soviet-era Hotel Uzbekistan, Amir Timur Square is located at the very center of Tashkent.  In the center of the square, in the center of the the capital city, sitting majestically on horseback, is the hero of Uzbekistan, the 14th century Turco-Mongol conqueror, Amir Timur.  … Continue reading Day 83: Amir Timur Square

Day 94: Ak-Saray Palace

In the ancient city of Kesh, just 100km to the south of Samarkand, stand the remains of Timur’s summer palace.  On the ruins of the impressive gateway the phrase “If you challenge our power – look at our buildings!” can still be made out.  The Ak-Saray Palace, ironically, is nothing more than a crumbling ruin … Continue reading Day 94: Ak-Saray Palace