Day 68: Hazroti Imom Mosque

The Hast Imam ensemble may be one of the most important religious sites in the Islamic world, but you won't hear much about it outside of Uzbekistan.  Hosting the oldest known copy of the Quran, and a strand of hair from the Prophet Muhammad, Hast Imam is the heart of muslim Tashkent.  This sprawling architectural complex, … Continue reading Day 68: Hazroti Imom Mosque

Day 72: Kalon Mosque

The Kalon Mosque is the anchor for the religious complex Po-i-Kalyan in Bukhara, together with the iconic Kalon Minaret and the Mir-i Arab Madrassah.  As the primary cathedral mosque of Bukhara, the present day Kalon Mosque dates from the early 16th century, about the year 1514, but incorporates into its construction characteristic brickwork from the … Continue reading Day 72: Kalon Mosque

Day 80: Kalta Minor Minaret

Located within the central citadel of the Ichan-Kala in Khiva, the Kalta Minor Minaret is most famous probably because it was never finished.  This colorful stump of a minaret was intended to be the most spectacular in the world, but instead the unfinished structure serves as a symbolic reminder not to start something you can't … Continue reading Day 80: Kalta Minor Minaret

Day 98: Juma Mosque

One of the most special places in all of Uzbekistan has to be the 18th century Juma Mosque, located within the ancient Ichan Kala,  the walled inner old-town of the city of Khiva.  Inside this amazing architectural wonder you will find 212 hand-carved wooden columns supporting the mosque's roof, some dating from the original 10th century … Continue reading Day 98: Juma Mosque

Khast Imam Complex – Tashkent

It's hard to find "old" Tashkent, but seeking it out is certainly worth the effort. 50 years ago, an earthquake damaged the city, and opportunistic Soviet planners used the seismic event (described in various magnitudes depending on the source) as an excuse to bulldoze the old town and build a social modernist utopia. Today, wide avenues and … Continue reading Khast Imam Complex – Tashkent

Legend of the Bibi-Khanym Mosque

For a bit of a romantic twist in the history of Samarkand, we visited the massive 14th century Bibi-Khanym Mosque. The monument is best known today for an illicit affair that supposedly took place between Timur's Queen, and the mosque's architect. Legend says that while Timur was away during his military campaign to India, his favorite wife, Queen Saray Mulk Khanum, ordered … Continue reading Legend of the Bibi-Khanym Mosque