Day 16: Kyr Kyz Fortress

Across the Turkic world the legend of the kirk-kiz is associated with any number of places.  The Kyr Kyz fortress in Termez is one of these, but the legend is just that... a legend.  The common theme with all of these local legends involve the so-called "forty virgins" depending on the version of the story … Continue reading Day 16: Kyr Kyz Fortress

Day 20: Palace of Arts – Turkistan

Located between Independence Square and the Monument of Courage, directly across the street from Tashkent's Crying Mother Monument, the Palace of Arts "Turkiston" is another of the Uzbek capital city's most imposing Soviet era monuments visitors will find hard to miss. Construction started in the final days of the USSR, but was derailed by lack of … Continue reading Day 20: Palace of Arts – Turkistan

Day 28: Tash-Hovli Palace

The Kuhna-Ark, which is located near the western gate of Khiva's Itchan Kala, served as the primary palace of the Khans for the better part of 400 years.  Built primarily as a fortress, the Ark was more purpose built for military use rather than as a lavish residence. Rather than have his residence in a … Continue reading Day 28: Tash-Hovli Palace

Day 73: Emir’s Summer Palace

When the mid 19th century Emir of Bukhara Nasrullah Khan decided to have a new palace built for himself, architects hung mutton carcass at points all around the city.  The last mutton carcass to spoil indicated the location with the coolest temperatures.  This is where the Emir chose to build his new summer residence. Two … Continue reading Day 73: Emir’s Summer Palace

Day 76: Istiqlol Palace

Probably one of the finest examples of Soviet architecture in Tashkent, the impressive facade of the concert hall "Palace of Friendship of Peoples" dominates the large public square as you come up the stairs from the Bunyodkor metro station.  Both the metro station and the square were formerly of the same name as the palace, … Continue reading Day 76: Istiqlol Palace

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

Day 58: Het Loo Palace, Apeldoorn 

   Tuesday found me with another free and husband-less day to fill, so I decided that I would stick closer to our hotel and check out the Het Loo palace, which is just around the corner. I was very glad to have access to this attraction and as I went through the exhibits and grounds, … Continue reading Day 58: Het Loo Palace, Apeldoorn 

Day 97: Palazzo Reale a Torino, an all-day event!

Ciao a tutti. We are continuing our weekend trip here in Torino, or Turin, as English-speakers call it. Turin is a bit off-the-beaten path to first-time Italy travelers, despite being a very large Italian city, mainly because it is not one of "the big 3"(Venice, Florence, Rome) visited on large-group tours. You may have heard … Continue reading Day 97: Palazzo Reale a Torino, an all-day event!