Day 1: Istanbul, Turkey. Arrival in Istanbul Ataturk Airport at 9:05 AM. The tour representative and guide will meet you at the Istanbul Airport and you will have a half day tour around Istanbul: Hippodrome, the former center of sprotiye and political activities of Constantinople. You will be able to see the Obelisk from Egypt, Serpentine Column from Delphi and fountain Willhelm II. Then you will visit Rustempasa Mosque, one of the biggest mosques of Istanbul from the XVIII century. Lunch. Continue sightseeing with Golden Horn which divides the European Side of Istanbul into two parts. Return to the airport. Departure from Istanbul Airport to Tashkent 6:35 PM.
Day 2: Tashkent. Arrival in Tashkent 1:10 AM. Meet at the airport. Transfer to the Hotel. Accommodation. Breakfast. Tashkent sightseeing tour: Kukeldash Madrassah, Kaffal Shashi Mausoleum, Barak Khan Madrassah, Mosque on Khast Imam Street. Afternoon visit the colorful Oriental Bazaar “Chorsu”, circular indoor-outdoor marketplace and Mustakillik Square (Independence Square).
Day 3: Tashkent-Samarkand. Drive to Samarkand (300 km), the city is more than 2750 years old. Stopping near the "gate" of Amur Temur where two mountain ranges meet. Opportunity to photograph two great mountain ranges of Uzbekistan and see the ancient river stream. Arrival. Accommodation in hotel. Lunch. Sightseeing tour: Registan Square, the main attraction of Samarkand and an impressive place for holding the world’s finest old and modern music festivals and holidays.
Day 4: Samarkand. Visit to Hebrew Prophet Daniel’s Tomb which is next to a pleasant ancient and contains a burial chamber around 18 meters long, the Jewish Quarter, and synagogue, located in the old section of Samarkand. Samarkand bazaar. Lunch. Continue sightseeing., Shahi Zinda Ensemble – ancient necropolis, Bibi Khanum Complex (the complex was build in honor of the wife of Amur Temur in the fourteenth century), Guri Emir Mausoleum. Dinner.
Day 5: Samarkand – Shakhrisabz - Samarkand. Drive to Shakhrisabz. Sightseeing tour: Ak -Sarai Palace, Kok - Gumbaz Mosque, Dorus-Siadat, Djekhangir Mausoleum, Timur’s Vault. Lunch in ancient Shahrisabz. Drive back to Samarkand. Visit the local church of the XIXth century in Samarkand.
Day 6: Samarkand – Bukhara. Drive to Bukhara through Malikchul desert and Zerafshan river (300 km). Stop in ancient Karavan Serai Gate and Gijduvan Ceramic center. Lunch in the National house of Narzullayev. Arrival in Bukhara. Accommodation at hotel. To be met by the sound of music (from the karnay, a local musical instrument) and the local precious drink chay and local sweets. Walk to the ancient part of Bukhara. Dinner in Grand Bukhara.
Day 7: Bukhara. Labi Khaus Complex ("the complex around the pond"), Nadir Divan Begi Khanaka (old hotel for merchants). Visit an ancient Chaykhana, the sculpture of Khodga Nasriddin in bronze made by local Jewish sculptor Yaakov Shapiro, Synagogue, Jewish Quarter, school and kindergarten.
The sightseeing continues with trade domes (XVI c) of money changers, hat sellers, silk, carpets, puppets and jewelry, Magoki Attari site which was originally a Zoroastrian temple, Abdulazizkhan Madreseh with its sandali (old version of house heating), Poi-Kalon Ensemble with the greatest minaret of Central Asia. Lunch. Visit the Ark (winter residence of local rulers from the first century), Bolo Khaus Complex, Ismail Samoniy Mosque. Dinner and Folklore show featuring local dancers, singers and fashion stars in Nadir Devan Begi Medreseh.
Day 8: Bukhara - Urgench (Khiva). Early breakfast. Departure to Khiva through Kizilkum desert which was the main Silk Road that connected East with West, stop at the yurts full of camels, to have picnic in local Chaykhana (tea-house), stop in Amu Darya (Oxus River), one of the biggest rivers of Central Asia. Dinner.
Day 9: Khiva. Transfer to Khiva, the fairy-tale city of the Silk Road. Excursion to Ichan Kala (old city) surrounded by high walls of air-dried bricks. Ata – Darvaza, Kalta Minar (small tower). Lunch at the national restaurant. Continue the sightseeing tour: Medreseh Mohammad Aminkhan, Kunya Ark (old fortress), Pahlavan Mahmud Mausoleum, Medreseh Khodja Islam with minaret (tower), Tash Hauli Palace ( with view of the palace's harem-women's quarter), Caravanserai (traditional inn for travelling merchants), Juma mosque with 200 wooden pillars. Dinner panoramic view of Khiva in moonlight. Transfer back to the hotel.
Day 10: Urgench – Tashkent. Breakfast. Flight to Tashkent. Arrival in Tashkent. Sightseeing: Earthquake Memorial, Applied and Decorative Art Museum, Amur Temur Park. Handicarft center of Tashkent. Free time for shopping. Farewell Dinner.
Day 11: Tashkent – Istanbul. Early transfer to an International Airport of Tashkent. Departure from Tashkent to Istanbul 3:00 AM. Arrival in Istanbul Ataturk Airport 6:20 AM. Meet at the Airport. Transfer to the hotel. Breakfast. Istanbul sightseeing tour: Blue Mosque, most famed masterpieces of Ottoman religious architecture. Standing right across the Blue Mosque is the Basilica of Saint Sophia that was built by Justinian the Great during 6th century. Lunch. After lunch continue with a visit to the home of the Ottoman Sultans, the Topkapi Palace, the Grand Covered Bazaar, the largest covered mall with 4,000 shops, enclosed under hundreds of domes and arches Jewish center. Dinner.
Day 12: Istanbul. After breakfast visit the Suleymaniye Mosque, a masterpiece of the famous architect Sinan, whose buildings (such as mosques, baths, caravanserais, bridges, etc.) are still in use after 500 years! Spice Bazaar from the 17th Century; where you will enjoy the aromas and colors of exotic spices and herbs, and food items like the famous Turkish Delight. Lunch. Afternooon sightseeing. Drive across the Bosphorus Bridge to the Asiatic side of the city. Drive up to Camlica Hill to see a beautiful view of the city and enjoy a cup of apple tea as you admire the seven hills of Istanbul. Then, visit the charming Beylerbeyi Palace from 1865, which was the summer palace of the Ottoman Sultans. Dinner.
Day 13: Istanbul, Turkey - New York, USA. Departure from Istanbul Ataturk Airport.
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Asia Uzbekistan Turkey Local Culture Cultural Journey Sightseeing
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